Posts Below
3/14/2017 - The Mad Drummer (Music)
2/5/2017 - A simple Schematron demo for PHP 5.6.28 and Saxon/C 1.0.2 (Software)
2/3/2017 - How to get the Schematron Testing Framework (stf) to run in Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2 (Software)
1/12/2017 - VUE: How to detach images from bubbles (also known as nodes) (Software)
1/8/2017 - GNU Emacs: Using helm-unicode; changing the font and font size only for helm-unicode; etc. (Emacs Lisp)
1/8/2017 - My slightly modified VUE: Visual Understanding Environment (Software)
12/19/2016 - Links: Music generated (or partly generated) by software (Music)
11/26/2016 - The renovated Puppy Linux Setup Kit will probably require PHP and PHP-GTK (Programming)
11/17/2016 - Always check ingredients lists, since you never know when a food company might add sucralose, or who knows what else (Food)
10/8/2016 - My nice, now "organized" room :-) (Journal)
9/21/2016 - Link: "It's Impossible to See all the Dots on this Optical Illusion at Once" (Science)
9/19/2016 - How to make Saxon/C into a PHP extension for PHP 5.6.13 in Lucid Puppy Linux 5.2.8 (Puppy Linux)
9/1/2016 - The death of Star Trek actor Anton Yelchin was possibly a result of software-controlled car parts (Software)
8/26/2016 - Link: Free eBook Giveaway from Hay House Publishing (Books)
8/25/2016 - Zippable pillow protectors: better than plastic bags for organizing things (Self-Help)
8/14/2016 - Oxalates and their interference with the absorption of nutrients (Health)
8/10/2016 - Link: "A Palace Was Unearthed Where Legend Places King Arthur's Birthplace" (History)
8/7/2016 - Sandstorm (Software)
8/2/2016 - Still trying to quit tea; hoping quitting will reduce my headaches (Health)
7/29/2016 - DemExit (Activism)

Welcome to Astroblahhh.Com. This site, consisting of both blog and non-blog pages, features a gradually growing assortment of miscellaneous things on a variety of topics. I, the author of most of the stuff on this site, usually go by the name Apollia on the internet.

This blog was generated by the WordsPlatz blog software, which I wrote from scratch.


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The Mad Drummer
Tuesday, March 14th, 2017
23:02:45 GMT

Music


On YouTube, I recently found one of the best drummers in the world. :-)

His website: TheMadDrummer.com


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A simple Schematron demo for PHP 5.6.28 and Saxon/C 1.0.2
Sunday, February 5th, 2017
04:38:05 GMT

Software

Today, I figured out how to use the XML-validation language Schematron with PHP 5.6.28 and the XSLT processor Saxon/C 1.0.2.

And since examples of using Schematron with PHP plus Saxon/C currently seem to be quite rare on the web - possibly even nonexistent, except for my own - I put together this GitHub repo:

Simple-Schematron-Demo-for-PHP-5.6.28-and-Saxon-C-1.0.2


I only authored the PHP script and the "README.md" file. The included Schematron schema and XML files are my slightly modified versions of things from the the official Schematron repo.

Everything else is unmodified stuff from the official Schematron repo.


Now that I can use Schematron, I'm guessing I'm probably going to have a much easier time with all of my current and future XSLT projects.

Soon, I'll be able to be far more sure I'm generating valid VUE: Visual Understanding Environment concept maps with tools other than VUE itself. (Here's my slightly modified version of VUE.)

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How to get the Schematron Testing Framework (stf) to run in Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2
Friday, February 3rd, 2017
22:56:21 GMT

Software

The operating system with which I accomplished the below was Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2.


I've been messing around with XML and XSLT lately, since I want to use XSLT to do some clever things with VUE: Visual Understanding Environment concept maps. (Here's my slightly modified version of VUE.)

So, I've been trying to figure how to use the XML-validation language Schematron, so I'll have a way to validate concept map files I generate or modify with XSLT instead of VUE.

In addition to Schematron, I also stumbled across some Java software called the Schematron Testing Framework (stf), which I'm not yet sure I'm going to need, but, figured out how to run anyway just in case I ever do need it.


It took me a while, but I finally figured out I needed to download some other Java software, and edit the "properties.xml" file included with the Schematron Testing Framework (stf) to tell it where to find that other software in my system.

Here's my entire "properties.xml" file:


In addition to the Schematron Testing Framework (stf) itself, I had to download the following three Java programs. I lazily downloaded binaries instead of compiling anything from scratch. (Possibly other versions than the ones I used would work.)


  1. Saxon-HE 9.7.0.14. You can get the "saxon9he.jar" file you need simply by unzipping "SaxonHE9-7-0-14J.zip".

    Quoted from the official web page about libre, open-source editions of Saxon:

    "Saxon-HE (Home Edition) is the open-source version of the Saxon XSLT and XQuery processor."


  2. XML Calabash 1.1.15-97. The "xmlcalabash-1.1.15-97.jar" file is an installer, which you can run either by double-clicking on it, or opening a console at its folder, and using this command:

    Quoted from the official XML Calabash web page:

    "XML Calabash is an implementation of XProc: An XML Pipeline Language."


  3. xml-commons-resolver-1.2.zip - Another file you can just unzip and don't have to install in any special place. The file you need for the Schematron Testing Framework (stf) is "resolver.jar".

    Here's the official Apache xml-commons web page.


I also used:


With everything installed and the "properties.xml" properly configured, all I had to do to run Schematron Testing Framework (stf) was go to stf's "example" folder, open a console there, and type:


That resulted in this output:


To confirm that Schematron Testing Framework (stf) was really reading the example XML files "foo-1.xml" and "foo-2.xml", I edited them, which, as expected, changed the output of the "ant" command a bit:


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VUE: How to detach images from bubbles (also known as nodes)
Thursday, January 12th, 2017
02:12:57 GMT

Software

Last edited Jan. 12, 2016, at 2:37 AM EST.


This blog post applies to both the official version 3.3.0 of the concept mapping software VUE: Visual Understanding Environment, and my own slightly modified version. I haven't tried this in other versions.


I've been a delighted user of VUE since perhaps 2010. But it was not until the past several days that I finally stumbled across a way to detach images from nodes! (Or, as I prefer to call nodes - bubbles.)

These instructions work for me using VUE in either Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2 or Lucid Puppy Linux 5.2.8 version 004. Haven't tried this in Windows or on a Mac.


Here's how to detach an image from a single bubble:

  1. Drag and drop an image onto your VUE map.

  2. Right-click the bubble containing the image and choose Remove Resource (keep image).

  3. At this point, the image is still not detachable. To make it detachable, copy and paste the bubble.

  4. Unless I'm mistaken - in the original bubble, the image will still be stuck no matter what you do. But with any pasted new copy of that bubble, you can click on the image and drag it out!


If you want to detach images from many bubbles:

  1. Select all the bubbles you want to detach images from.

  2. Go to the Content menu and select Remove Resources (keep images). (Have to do that instead of right-clicking, because oddly, the "Remove Resource (keep images)" item in the right-click menu disappears when you have more than one bubble selected.)

  3. Copy and paste all the bubbles.

  4. Again, unless I'm mistaken, the images are only detachable from the pasted copies, not the original bubbles.

    You can select multiple images to drag out by clicking one image, then pressing the Shift key on your keyboard when you click the other images. Once you've selected all the images you want, click one of your selected images, then drag all of them as a group to wherever you want.


If you put an image back into a bubble, it can get stuck again, but you can just repeat the above process to make another detached, bubble-free copy. Or use the undo feature.

Happily, detaching the images makes it possible to more easily resize the images, the same way you resize a bubble. (Click on the image to select it, which makes white boxes appear at the corners and edges, which you can click on and drag to resize the image.)


I don't know if there's a maximum size for images, but, you can definitely resize them to be larger than their full size.

And using VUE's Layers feature, you can actually use images as backgrounds for anything on higher layers!


To work with layers, go to the Windows menu and choose Layers, or press Ctrl-5.

Using just the controls in that small window, you can create new layers, lock and unlock layers, show or hide certain layers, move whatever bubbles, images, etc. you want to other layers, reorder layers, duplicate layers, merge layers, and remove layers. And perhaps do other things I don't know about.

The rename-layer feature in VUE 3.3.0 - and in my own slightly modified version of VUE - currently doesn't work in Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2 and Lucid Puppy Linux 5.2.8 version 004, and also in a MacOS. No idea how to fix that yet, but I might try to figure it out.

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GNU Emacs: Using helm-unicode; changing the font and font size only for helm-unicode; etc.
Sunday, January 8th, 2017
23:37:45 GMT

Emacs Lisp

I recently figured out that in GNU Emacs, I was using the helm-unicode extension wrong.

After installing that, I mistakenly assumed that the key sequence Ctrl-x 8 Return (or, C-x 8 RET for short) was automatically now using helm-unicode. Then I was confused that the list of Unicode characters only had names and not the actual characters.

Finally, I figured out that C-x 8 RET was only running the command (insert-char), not (helm-unicode). (To find out what command is assigned to a key sequence or keychord, you can type C-h k, then after the prompt "Describe key (or click menu item):" appears in the minibuffer, type the key, key chord or key sequence you're curious about.)


To make C-x 8 RET run (helm-unicode) instead, I had to run this command (and I also added it to my GNU Emacs preferences):




Another useful thing to add is this code to make the font larger only for helm-unicode searches. It's code I slightly modified, most of which I originally found on this page:

If you don't have the "Symbola" Unicode font, you can change "Symbola" to another font name. Or, you can download Symbola from this page:

Unicode Fonts for Ancient Scripts
http://users.teilar.gr/~g1951d/




Also, here's some code I found somewhere which will make GNU Emacs display Unicode in any buffer:

The problem with using that code is, it can sometimes make GNU Emacs very slow - for example, if you do the key sequence C-h h to look at the "HELLO" file included with GNU Emacs, which shows translations of the word "hello" in many different languages.




If you want to output the entire Unicode character list as browseable, editable text in a buffer, try this. A slightly modified version of code I found on this page:

I suggest pasting that code into your *scratch* buffer. Then, put your cursor (or "point" as it's called in GNU Emacs jargon) at the end of the "print-elements-of-list" function definition and do the key sequence C-x C-e.

Then, to actually output the list into whatever buffer you're running this in, put your cursor at the end of the last line and do the key sequence C-u C-x C-e.

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My slightly modified VUE: Visual Understanding Environment
Sunday, January 8th, 2017
05:04:12 GMT

Software

I slightly modified the wonderful concept mapping software VUE: Visual Understanding Environment to work better for me in Puppy Linux.

My modified source code is available from here:

GitHub.com/Apollia/VUE


My top goals were:

  1. To make it possible in Puppy Linux to successfully open files and web pages by clicking resource buttons attached to VUE nodes (or as I prefer to call them, bubbles).

    If I recall correctly, that already worked in Windows XP, but it mostly didn't work right for me in any edition of Puppy Linux I tried VUE in - namely, Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2 and Lucid Puppy Linux 5.2.8 version 004. (Except I was always able to open other VUE map files.)


    So, I fixed that, in a crude but effective-enough way. And now I can not only open other VUE maps, but do things like launch other programs and scripts, and visit web pages, just by clicking currently inconveniently tiny buttons in VUE.

    Reminds me a little of HyperCard.


  2. To make VUE visually blend in better with my preferred dark desktop theme.


I don't feel like writing in 100% thorough detail about how to compile the source code, but, one way to compile it is by using Apache Ant. (I used v1.10, and in the past, version 1.9.6 also worked for me.)

Once you have Ant installed, you can run the command "ant all" in the "VUE2/src" folder, which after about 20 seconds results in a runnable "VUE.jar" file which you can find at the path "VUE2/src/build/VUE.jar".

And you can run VUE.jar by opening a console in the "VUE2/src/build" folder and typing:

java -jar VUE.jar


It's also possible to build and run VUE using the Eclipse Java EE IDE for Web Developers Neon.2 Release (4.6.2), and probably other versions.

Eclipse also has debugging features I mostly haven't figured out how to use yet, and the useful ability to generate Javadoc pages like these.


This old forum post on how to put VUE into an Eclipse project was helpful, though I didn't follow all of those instructions. I told Eclipse to base the project on the Ant build file at VUE2/src/build.xml, and that worked fine.

Eclipse still listed a bunch of errors even after I excluded these folders using Eclipse's Resource Filters feature:

src/java15
src/oki/old
src/maclib
src/old
src/build

But, Eclipse still was able to build VUE anyway.

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Links: Music generated (or partly generated) by software
Monday, December 19th, 2016
13:42:00 GMT

Music

Here's an interesting article I found today:

Deep-Learning Machine Listens to Bach, Then Writes Its Own Music in the Same Style
(Dec. 14, 2016 from TechnologyReview.com)


And here's an impressive example of that music on YouTube:

DeepBach: harmonization in the style of Bach generated using deep learning




I was hoping there was source code available for that software, so, I googled for "bach source code deep learning". Didn't find the above project's source code, but, I found this:

BachBot.com

BachBot is a free (as in freedom), libre, open source project with a code repository on GitHub.

I tried the BachBot Challenge and got only 40% correct the first time, but 100% the second time, when I started listening more carefully for anything particularly un-Bach-like, such as off-key-sounding notes.




Another interesting page:

Analyzing Six Deep Learning Tools for Music Generation
(Oct. 5, 2016 from AsimovInstitute.org)




I especially enjoyed the examples from Flow-Machines.com.

Two of those tracks are also on SoundCloud, which I'm assuming might have better audio quality than YouTube.

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The renovated Puppy Linux Setup Kit will probably require PHP and PHP-GTK
Saturday, November 26th, 2016
05:59:24 GMT

Programming

While trying to figure out the best way to do some new things with my Puppy Linux Setup Kit, I finally found out that various Unix-related systems (including GNU/Linux) are excessively flexible about what characters are allowed in file names.

Here's a detailed essay I found on that topic, from dwheeler.com:

Fixing Unix/Linux/POSIX Filenames:
Control Characters (such as Newline), Leading Dashes, and Other Problems


So, that means using shell commands like "find", "xargs", etc. is much trickier and more inconvenient than I thought.

Quite annoyingly, newline characters can be in file names. So, there's no guarantee that each line of output from "find" will contain a complete file path. I also had trouble with trying to make "xargs" deal with paths containing single quotes. And the above essay describes numerous even worse problems.

These problems make me less reluctant to make the Puppy Linux Setup Kit require PHP and PHP-GTK, partly just so I can hopefully avoid a lot of the quirks of Bash programming.


I still like Bash programming much more than I used to, and I like being able to make some simple GUIs (graphical user interfaces) using only stuff that's already included by default with Puppy Linux, such as GtkDialog, which can be used to make a nice variety of GUI elements.

And I still think it was worthwhile to spend a few months struggling with Bash programming, since I learned a lot from that.

But I still have such a tremendously easier time with PHP than Bash scripts that I doubt I'll ever be fully comfortable with the latter, at this rate.

I'll probably still use Bash for simple things, but will probably use PHP for more complicated things.

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Always check ingredients lists, since you never know when a food company might add sucralose, or who knows what else
Thursday, November 17th, 2016
08:26:39 GMT

Food

I'm so tired of suddenly finding that things like sucralose have been added to food products I used to like.

It happened to me before, and it just happened to me again several hours ago.


As part of my effort to reduce my sugar consumption, I tried what I mistakenly thought was the totally unsweetened version of one of my favorite cereals, a healthy-sounding high-fiber cereal which I guess I won't name.

To my surprise, it tasted sweet. So, I checked the ingredients, and to my horror, I saw that it contained sucralose.


That gave me quite a fright, since I had already eaten a spoonful or two. I tried (but failed) to make myself throw up.

Then I checked the ingredients of the version of that cereal I usually ate (which I already was aware was slightly sweetened), and was horrified to find that contained sucralose too!

I don't know if it always had sucralose or if that's a recent addition, but, I'm really upset about that and will never eat that cereal again unless the sucralose is removed, and maybe not even then.

I'll always be wary of all that company's products from now on. And other companies too. Going to check the ingredient lists of everything far more carefully in the future, even things I regularly eat, since too often, the ingredients get changed for the worse for no good reason.


Anyway, I already ate many boxfuls of that cereal (including at least 1 boxful which definitely had sucralose), and don't know for sure whether or not that had any bad effects on me, so that made me less panicked about eating just a spoonful or two of the less sweetened version of that cereal.

At least I didn't eat that cereal every day - maybe a box every few weeks - and only started eating it several months ago, in summer 2016. I have had a variety of health issues (or nuisances) lately, but I'm not sure any are related to sucralose, since they all have other possible causes, and I haven't had most of the symptoms listed on this page or this page. And overall I think I've been improving and will probably be OK.

But I still don't ever want to risk eating sucralose, and I'm so upset that food companies unnecessarily put things like that into their products.

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My nice, now "organized" room :-)
Saturday, October 8th, 2016
12:06:06 GMT

Journal

I've been doing much better since quitting caffeine and my electric blanket, which I believe was interfering with my sleep quality even more than caffeine alone was.

So, I was finally able to make my very cluttered room a lot nicer to live in.


My phone's camera takes unrealistically dark, dull-looking pictures, so I edited these pictures' brightness, contrast, saturation and gamma (whatever that is) in mtPaint to make these pictures look closer to (or better than) how my room really looks.

Look how clean and organized it is!!!!! ;-D


Larger Size

Original Picture without brightness, contrast, saturation, and gamma adjusted with mtPaint

This is the best it has ever been.

That's the especially cluttery corner, next to my big window, which features my low-cost alternative to curtains - taped together pieces of scrap paper.

Part of my office chair is visible at the lower left, and the red thing next to that is part of my standing desk.


Here's the other side of the room:


Larger Size

Original Picture without brightness, contrast, saturation, and gamma adjusted with mtPaint

My standing desk still needs to be decluttered. But the rest - well, it's hard to see how I could improve on that. ;-D

Quoted from another blog post:

The wide painting isn't by me, and I don't know who painted it. Astonishingly, it was only $2 - two dollars - from a local live auction!

The smaller, more colorful picture is a Thomas Kinkade print called The Garden of Prayer, and if I recall correctly, it also was just $2 - two dollars. Found it at a local thrift store.


Here's the stuff at the top of that shelf:


Larger Size

Original Picture without brightness, contrast, saturation, and gamma adjusted with mtPaint

The shiny silvery blue metallic map of the world was from a local live auction in 2013, and it came with with a second map of the world which is in the second-nicest corner of my room. Both of them together only cost $8 (eight dollars) total, if I recall correctly.

I think the small vase on the right is made of very tarnished copper. It's quite heavy for its size. It might have been from a Goodwill thrift store or some other thrift store, and was probably under $4 (four dollars). I intended to someday clean it and probably sell it, but I still haven't gotten around to that.

The baskety vase was probably from a Goodwill thrift store and probably less than $3 (three dollars).

In the center is a greeting card or postcard.


Here's the second-nicest corner of my room:


Larger Size

Original Picture without brightness, contrast, saturation, and gamma adjusted with mtPaint

Actually, maybe this is the nicest corner of my room, because of those 3 lovely little works of art.

I originally bought those world maps with the intention of selling them, but, I ended up keeping them, since I usually am too busy with other things to try to sell things.

The blue/purple/etc. carnival glass was around $24 (twenty-four dollars) from a local antique store in January 2003, and that's the most I ever paid for something to decorate my room.

The pastel flowery vase was from a Goodwill thrift store, and was maybe something like $2 (two dollars).


Most of the rest of that shelf:



Larger Size

Original Picture without brightness, contrast, saturation, and gamma adjusted with mtPaint


And part of my 3rd and final shelf:


Larger Size

Original Picture without brightness, contrast, saturation, and gamma adjusted with mtPaint

The picture is part of a 1994 or 1993 Dinotopia calendar, and the red thing holding it up there is a screwdriver.


Finally, junk isn't constantly getting in my way anymore. I can easily open my mini-refrigerator, and roll my office chair around part of my room! I can actually walk between my bed and door!

Now I have room to bellydance without having to stand on my bed!

And, I finally know where my towel is.

Now, the world will be my oyster. :-D


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Link: "It's Impossible to See all the Dots on this Optical Illusion at Once"
Wednesday, September 21st, 2016
06:27:32 GMT

Science

Quite cool:

It's Impossible to See all the Dots on this Optical Illusion at Once
Sept. 12, 2016 from PopularMechanics.com


A more detailed article:

Here's why you can't see all 12 black dots in this crazy optical illusion
Sept. 13, 2016, from ScienceAlert.com


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How to make Saxon/C into a PHP extension for PHP 5.6.13 in Lucid Puppy Linux 5.2.8
Monday, September 19th, 2016
19:15:31 GMT

Puppy Linux

I wanted to be able to use XSLT 2.0 with PHP (my favorite programming language), so I figured out how to compile Saxon/C into a PHP extension.

According to Saxon/C's official home page, Saxon/C provides "XML document processing for the C/C++/PHP platforms", and "In particular, Saxon/C provides processing in XSLT, XQuery and XPath, and Schema validation".


I ran into a few problems trying to make Saxon/C into a PHP extension on my Lucid Puppy Linux 5.2.8 version 004 system, but, fortunately, I was able to solve them.

I still didn't figure out how to make all of the Saxon/C example PHP scripts work, but, 3 out of 4 work fine for me.




To compile software from scratch in Puppy Linux, it's often necessary (or convenient) to use the DevX file of development tools for your Puppy Linux.

My page of Some Puppy Linux Basics explains more about DevX files, and if you need the DevX for Lucid Puppy 5.2.8, it's available at this link:

http://distro.ibiblio.org/puppylinux/puppy-5.2.8/

If you're using a different version of Puppy than Lucid Puppy 5.2.8, that DevX probably won't work, so you should instead download the DevX released for your Puppy.

Also, if you're not using Lucid Puppy 5.2.8, please bear in mind that the instructions in this blog post might not all apply or work for you, since different Puppy Linux distros, and probably even different versions of the same Puppy distro, can differ quite substantially from each other.

And here's how to load SFS files.




Here's a list of required other software. Perhaps slightly different versions would also work, but these are exactly what I used.




The below instructions assume you already have PHP 5.6.13 and Java 1.8.0_51 installed.

Here's how I made Saxon/C into a PHP extension.


  1. Unzip the file "libsaxon-HEC-setup-v1.0.2.zip" to whatever folder you want.

  2. Open a terminal window in that folder, and type this command:

    ./libsaxon-HEC-setup-v1.0.2


    That program will then give you a prompt that looks something like this:

    Enter destination path[/root/00-ApWorkspace/Saxonica/Saxon-HEC1.0.2]:

    You can press Enter on your keyboard to accept the default path, or type in a different path. If all goes well, a list of files that are being installed will be printed, and in the end, it will say:

    Saxon-HEC 1.0.2 has been successfully installed on your computer.


  3. Next, open the Saxonica folder, then the Saxon-HEC1.0.2 folder.

    There's a "readme.md" file you can read if you want.

    There's also a "php-library-module" folder, containing "saxon.so", an already-built PHP extension. It might work if you happen to be using the version of PHP the Saxon/C home page says that extension was built for - PHP 5.5.9. But, I tried it with PHP 5.6.13, and it didn't work for me.


  4. Open the Saxon.C.API folder, then open a terminal window in that folder, and type these commands. (The "phpize" command will only work if you have PHP installed):

    phpize

    ./configure --enable-saxon


  5. Here's where I had to diverge from the instructions in the "readme.md" file.

    Originally, running "make" didn't succeed for me because I had Java installed in an unconventional place, and "make" needed two Java-related files which "make" couldn't find: "jni.h" and "jni_md.h" (and probably others as well).

    "make" also needed a file from somewhere in the Saxon-HEC1.0.2 folder.


    So, to let "make" know where to find those files, I had to edit the "Makefile" in a text editor.

    In "Makefile", find line 31, which looks like this:

    CPPFLAGS = -DHAVE_CONFIG_H

    Change that to something like this (but customize it with the paths where you have Java, and where you put the Saxon-HEC1.0.2 folder):

    CPPFLAGS = -DHAVE_CONFIG_H -I/root/apbin/Java/v8u51/include/ -I/root/apbin/Java/v8u51/include/linux/ -I/root/00-ApWorkspace/Saxonica/Saxon-HEC1.0.2/


  6. Added Dec. 20, 2016, 12:50 AM EST. (Sorry, I forgot to mention this step before!) Next, to make it so the "make" command will succeed, you must put a symlink inside the /usr/lib/ folder, pointing to the "libsaxonhec.so" file in the "Saxonica/Saxon-HEC1.0.2/" folder.

    Otherwise, without that symlink, "make" will eventually fail with this error:


  7. Next, in a terminal window opened at the Saxon.C.API folder, type this command:

    make

    After "make" succeeds, the compiled "saxon.so" PHP extension will be in the "modules" folder.


  8. Open the "modules" folder. Then, go to wherever your folder of PHP extensions is, and copy "saxon.so" into that folder.

    For me, that folder was:

    /usr/local/lib/php/extensions


  9. Then, to enable the saxon.so extension in PHP, edit your "php.ini" file. You might have multiple php.ini files - I have one at /etc/php.ini and one at /usr/local/lib/php.ini.

    In the extensions section of your "php.ini" file, put a line like this:

    extension=saxon.so


  10. I also had to create a symlink at /usr/lib/rt/ pointing to the "rt" folder in the "Saxon-HEC1.0.2" folder, since otherwise, errors happened, sometimes with PHP, and sometimes with the Hiawatha web server (which sometimes gave me an Internal Server Error).

    In my system, the "rt" folder was in this folder, but it will probably be elsewhere on your system:

    /root/00-ApWorkspace/Saxonica/Saxon-HEC1.0.2


  11. To make sure the extension was installed successfully, you can have PHP run the phpinfo(); command to print a list of installed PHP extensions and other info.

    You can even run the phpinfo(); command from a terminal window with this command line:

    php -r "phpinfo();"


There are example PHP scripts in the folder Saxon-HEC1.0.2/samples/php. "xpathExamples.php", "xqueryExamples.php", and "xsltExamples.php" worked fine for me, but "validatorExamples.php" had an error which I don't yet know how to fix.

Also, I think I ran into Bug #2677 - Saxon/C PHP API getErrorMessage does not report useful error.

However, more detailed error messages are readable in my Hiawatha web server logs, which, on my system, are located at:

/usr/local/var/log/hiawatha/error.log


I made this little PHP script called display_last_5_lines_of_hiawatha_error_log.php to make that log easier to read in my web browser:


Additions, March 12, 2017, 5:36 PM/6:14 PM EDT. While trying to use the Saxon/C PHP extension in Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2, I had trouble making it work in the Hiawatha web server, even after doing all of the above.

Even with /usr/lib64/libsaxonhec.so (another other paths) symlinked to my system's location for libsaxonhec.so (/root/apbin/Saxon-HEC/Saxonica/Saxon-HEC1.0.2/libsaxonhec.so), I kept getting Internal Server Errors, and Hiawatha's log said, "Unable to load /usr/lib64/libsaxonhec." and "Error: : No such file or directory".

I think this might be related to Bug #2907 - php saxon.so is looking for libsaxonhec.so without so extension in both /usr/lib64 and /usr/lib and failing.


Fortunately, that bug page helped me figure out a workaround. In every PHP script which needs to run Saxon/C, I can put this line (which you'll probably need to customize with the path to where libsaxonhec.so is on your system):

Then, Saxon/C works fine for me.


Another workaround is to add this to Hiawatha's config file (which, on my system, is at /usr/local/etc/hiawatha/hiawatha.conf):

Then, I don't even need to add anything to my PHP scripts for them to just work.


Yet another workaround is to not even use a web server (which I usually prefer anyway, at least on any of my internet-connected computers). Then, you can either set the SAXONC_HOME environment variable before you run PHP, or, you can set it from inside your PHP script using the PHP line above.

I made a couple scripts to make it easier to view PHP script output in your web browser without having to use a web server:

https://github.com/Apollia/Without-web-server-run-PHP-script-and-view-output-in-web-browser

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The death of Star Trek actor Anton Yelchin was possibly a result of software-controlled car parts
Thursday, September 1st, 2016
12:14:21 GMT

Software

I was very saddened to find out today that the actor Anton Yelchin, who played Chekov in the recent Star Trek movies, died possibly because of the software-controlled "e-shift transmission" in his Jeep Grand Cherokee, which was involved in a recall. He was only 27.

So, I updated this blog post again:

The "Internet of Things" and "Pervasive Computing": Some of the Worst Ideas Ever


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Link: Free eBook Giveaway from Hay House Publishing
Friday, August 26th, 2016
22:51:48 GMT

Books

I heard about this free (as in price) eBook giveaway from an e-newsletter from Hay House Publishing:

Free eBook Giveaway - Hay House

I particularly like the fact that the books are provided in a variety of formats. My favorite of the formats provided is EPUB format, which I can read in my web browser with the EPUBReader add-on for the Firefox web browser. (That add-on also works in the Pale Moon web browser, which I prefer over Firefox.)

Then, using the Stylish add-on for Firefox (or Pale Moon), I can easily change the text's color to anything I want, and give the text a dark background, which makes it far more pleasant for me to read.

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Zippable pillow protectors: better than plastic bags for organizing things
Thursday, August 25th, 2016
11:54:46 GMT

Self-Help

For most of my life, I used plastic bags and cardboard boxes of various sizes (usually overly large, heavy, and difficult to move when full of junk) to "organize" things in a mostly inadequate, chaotic way.

But, recently, I finally thought of a great new innovation - putting things inside zippable pillow protectors. I prefer pillow protectors because ordinary pillowcases often don't have zippers. And sometimes ordinary pillowcases are so nice and soft you might be reluctant to use them for storage.

Compared to noisy, unsightly plastic shopping bags or garbage bags which easily get torn and often have no built-in way to completely close them - zippable pillow protectors are quieter, nicer to look at, easily closeable, and tend not to rip.


I don't have a closet, and I don't have space in my room for a clothes rack, so, now I keep different categories of clothes in different zippable pillow protectors, which makes them much easier to find than having them in numerous cardboard boxes or a giant mixed up pile.

I haven't yet thought of or found a good way to label them, but will update this post if I do.

(Addition, Sept. 22, 2016, 10:00 PM EDT. Using safety pins, I attach small rectangular papers labeled with the bag's contents. Each bag gets two labels - both near the middle of the zippered edge, on both the front and back of the bag. I should maybe use something a bit sturdier than plain paper, since plain paper might rip easily.)


It turns out both plastic bags and pillow protectors are bad for any non-rugged dressy types of shoes, since those can easily get crushed and creased. (I was always so oblivious to fashion that I didn't realize that until this year!) And I guess any clothes you don't want getting rumpled might be better off hanging somewhere instead of crammed into a bag.

But, for most of my clothes and my more rugged shoes, pillow protectors are perfectly fine. As for my more fragile shoes, I'll just stick those in small cardboard boxes.

I want to get a lot more zippable pillow protectors to hold many other categories of stuff, like plastic bags, boring junk mail I don't feel like going through yet, old receipts, other old papers I don't really care about but don't want to just throw away, and whatever else.

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Oxalates and their interference with the absorption of nutrients
Sunday, August 14th, 2016
01:39:27 GMT

Health

(Here's my site's disclaimer again, since this blog post is about health-related topics, and I'm not a health care professional, just a layperson who sometimes takes an interest in health and nutrition.)


Since earlier this year or late last year, and also on occasion even as far back as 2006, I've sometimes had jaw aches, mostly on the right side. Fortunately, that has been scarcely bothersome at all compared to my headaches.

However, earlier this year, sometimes I mistook that jaw pain for possible toothaches in my top and bottom backmost right teeth - except usually the ache felt more spread out rather than localized to my teeth. (I was similarly confused by some sore spots on my gums which were quite probably from gum disease - but I think that's probably a problem separate from my jaw pain, since my gum issues mostly went away months ago thanks to Vitamin C.)

When I saw the dentist in February, I found out the only cavities I had were on the opposite side of my mouth, and they were all so small I didn't even need to be numbed to get them filled.

I almost couldn't believe there was nothing wrong with my right backmost top and bottom teeth. But, the pain wasn't consistent, and it seemed like drinking enough liquids and taking magnesium helped. (Taking magnesium, Vitamin C, and drinking more liquids were all ideas I found and tried on my own - none of those were suggested to me by the dentist.)


However, my jaw aches have been more of a problem lately, especially the past few weeks. Usually the effects of magnesium on me had been far more noticeable - in addition to seeming to probably reduce my jaw pain and rid me of some annoying twitches near my right eye, it made me feel calmer and better able to sleep, and it sometimes made me feel very tired if I took it anytime I wasn't well-rested.

But lately, I've been feeling like magnesium hasn't been working as well for me.

So, that made me wonder if somehow some new factor in my nutrition (or life) was making me extra deficient in magnesium.


A while back, when reading about chicory (one of the main ingredients in Teeccino, an excellent "herbal coffee"), I ran across this page which said chicory is high in oxalates and not recommended for people with arthritis or who are prone to kidney stones.

So, I started reading about oxalates, and found this page which quoted some unknown other source which said:

“oxalates strongly bind to minerals and vice versa (e.g., calcium, magnesium, zinc and potassium), and reduces the absorption of your minerals as they both come out via your urine.”

And the Antinutrient page on Wikipedia also mentions oxalates.


I also somehow ran across stuff related to Vitamin C and oxalates, such as this page, which says "vitamin C can be metabolized to oxalate".

That interested me because I had started taking two 500 mg Vitamin C's per day back in April, since it seems to tremendously help with my possible gum disease.

But, I think it wasn't until the past few weeks that magnesium started to seem significantly less effective for me.

Maybe some of my ailments are side effects of quitting caffeine. It's hard to judge since I didn't carefully log exactly what things happened when.


But, my current top theory is that maybe all the extra oxalates I've likely been getting lately from Teeccino and (to a lesser extent) from Vitamin C have maybe been interfering with my magnesium absorption.

Though I've also read that even just being extra stressed out can contribute to magnesium deficiency, and that could definitely also be a factor for me.

(Addition, Aug. 15, 2016, 5:08 AM EDT. This blog post I found describes a slow recovery from caffeine withdrawal which took up to 5 months! So, I now think it's very possible that caffeine withdrawal is a bigger factor in my ailments than I realized before.

Here's a blog post by me where I've been adding updates on my efforts to quit caffeine, or at least reduce how much I consume.)


Anyway, since Teeccino lacks caffeine and thus isn't addictive, it will be easy for me to experiment at some point with temporarily abstaining from Teeccino.

And also, now that I've sampled the majority of Teeccino flavors, I'll be less likely to drink more than one mugful per day. A lot of why I drank so much was simply to try all the new (to me) flavors as soon as possible.

But, I quite like Teeccino, so for now, I'd like to keep drinking it daily, and find a good way to adjust my diet to compensate for the possibly higher amounts of oxalates I've been consuming.


This aforementioned page says near the top that "High doses of vitamin B6 may decrease oxalate production".

So, perhaps having more Vitamin B6 might help me. For years, off and on, I have been taking Nature Made Stress B (which also contains Vitamin C and zinc). But I often have neglected to take it, since it tends to upset my stomach unless I eat something soon before (or soon after) taking it. I usually don't eat a large breakfast, so I can't just take Stress B first thing in my "morning" (or whatever equates to morning for me, due to my severe sleep issues).

I'll just have to do a better job of remembering to take Stress B after I eat enough food.


I already tried taking extra magnesium. A few weeks ago I started taking Nature Made magnesium citrate (except, unlike that page, my bottle just says "Softgels" instead of "Liquid Softgels").

I got magnesium citrate because I read in various places that some forms of magnesium are better-absorbed than others.

But I was surprised at how little effect magnesium citrate seemed to have on me compared to magnesium oxide. It's reputed to be better-absorbed than magnesium oxide, and (until lately), even just 1 Nature Made magnesium oxide seemed to have very noticeable effects on me, sometimes making me feel very tired about 2 hours after taking it (unless I'm well-rested enough that it just makes me feel more relaxed and calm).

However, I started taking magnesium citrate around the same time I started drinking Teeccino, so, maybe that's why the magnesium citrate seemingly doesn't have very noticeable effects on me.


I also tried extra Nature Made magnesium oxide. At times, it seemed to do surprisingly little for me - at one point, I tried taking 3 at once, and didn't feel much difference. Though at another point, I tried taking 2 at once, and a few hours later, it seemed to make me feel crappy (literally).

So, I think maybe I'd rather get extra magnesium from my diet instead of supplements, or at least just avoid taking more than 1 magnesium oxide at a time.

I've continued to take 1 serving of Nature Made magnesium citrate daily (in my "morning", usually). But, judging by my jaw aches, I suspect I need even more magnesium than that.


Perhaps another good approach might be to consume additional amounts of other nutrients that oxalates are reputed to interfere with the absorption of.

This page suggests consuming more calcium.


And this page says:

"When you're taking magnesium, you need to consider calcium, vitamin D3 and vitamin K2 as well, since these all work synergistically with one another. "

Unfortunately, judging by this other page, Vitamin K2 sounds like it might be a nutrient which might be hard to get directly in a purely vegetarian diet. (Reminds me of the difficulties with getting some forms of Omega 3 in purely vegetarian ways.)

However, this page points out various things suggesting that it might be possible for the body to convert Vitamin K1 into Vitamin K2.

I hope that's possible, since I'm pretty fond of kale (which has a lot of Vitamin K), and I could (and probably should) eat kale more frequently.

(Additions, Aug. 14/15, 9:41 PM/12:46 AM EDT. There seems to be conflicting info on the web about whether kale is high in oxalates or not. Here's a page that says it's low in oxalates. I tried to find the Harvard data that page referred to, and found something, though I don't know whether or not that's what that page was talking about. But the file "Oxalate Content of Foods.xls" says kale is low oxalate, with 2 mg of oxalates.)

I also am fond of gouda cheese, but it's kind of expensive, and I still feel guilty about not being 100% vegetarian.


I wish I could have figured out the perfect cure(s) for my various ailments before posting this. But, oh, well.

Magnesium not having such a strong effect on me as it used to was just such an unusual difference for me that it seemed worth investigating and writing about, even though I'm not a health care professional nor anyone else who is officially licensed to come up with theories about any of these topics.

As more details come to light, I might update this post in the future.

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Link: "A Palace Was Unearthed Where Legend Places King Arthur's Birthplace"
Wednesday, August 10th, 2016
17:32:57 GMT

History

Found via the Smithsonian Magazine email newsletter:

A Palace Was Unearthed Where Legend Places King Arthur's Birthplace
(Aug. 5, 2016)

I always liked King Arthur stories, so, I thought this was cool.

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Sandstorm
Sunday, August 7th, 2016
05:05:19 GMT

Software

I recently heard about a very impressive project called Sandstorm which makes installing web apps (like WordPress or MediaWiki, and many others) as easy as installing phone apps.

Sandstorm Demo

One reason I'm so pleased to have run across this is because I had been idly wondering for years if there might be good ways to make my and others' web apps easy to install other than using a combination of my Puppy Linux Setup Kit and Astroblahhh GLMP-GTK, plus VirtualBox to make them hopefully more secure.


I don't have the expertise to judge Sandstorm's technical and security merits, but, from the perspective of a user, I find Sandstorm very pleasant and easy to use.

And, as the author of some amateurish (yet still useful at least to me) web apps (and other things), I'm definitely interested in someday seeing if I can easily convert Astroblahhh Desktop and/or the WordsPlatz blogging software and/or the Eryss astrology software and/or other and/or not yet created things into Sandstorm packages.


To my surprise, I was able to successfully do all the steps in Sandstorm's packaging tutorial while using Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2!

I don't feel up to writing a complete set of instructions on how to install everything in Lighthouse 64, and it would probably be better for me to just add scripts to my Puppy Linux Setup Kit to automate most everything.

But, here are a few notes.



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Still trying to quit tea; hoping quitting will reduce my headaches
Tuesday, August 2nd, 2016
12:03:28 GMT

Health

(Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 6:12 PM EDT. Since I've added so much to this post since I first posted it, I decided I ought to add a link to my site's disclaimer, and also point out yet again that I'm not a health care professional, just a layperson who sometimes takes an interest in health and nutrition.

I'm 35 years old, never attended college (partly for financial reasons, and partly because of my severe sleep issues and shyness), and I have a GED instead of a normal high school diploma.

So, please don't blindly assume I know what I'm talking about, and please don't blindly assume that my ideas or personal health habits necessarily have any merit.

This blog post is a personal diary of how things have been going for me in the process of trying to free myself from caffeine, and my thoughts and speculations on the possible causes of my headaches and other ailments, and different things I've tried, or which I'm considering trying, to alleviate my ailments.

I hope it's interesting, but none of it is intended as health advice. Please be careful, please use common sense, and please don't blindly mimic me. It's quite possible that some of the things I tried, or will try, are, or will be, quite stupid. If you need health advice, please consult a health care professional.

End of addition.)


Quitting caffeine has been getting tougher for me. I'm aware quitting it abruptly can lead to nasty withdrawal symptoms.

But, in my eagerness to be done with tea forever, I guess I rushed too quickly through the gradual-decrease phase and tried too soon to stop drinking it completely.

Result: headaches.


I was hoping approximately 12 ounces of tea per day wouldn't be that hard to get unaddicted from if I really tried, but, darn.

I guess I better keep quitting gradually instead of abruptly. Fortunately, simply drinking tea makes me feel better pretty quickly.

However, I no longer like the taste of tea as much as I used to, since Teeccino (which is "herbal coffee" with no caffeine) tastes so much better to me in comparison. So, I'm going to try to mixing my tea with Teeccino. (I wasn't mixing the two before because I wanted to see what pure Teeccino tasted like, and I was hoping I could quit tea sooner and less gradually.)

(Addition, 4:03 PM EDT. It turns out they both taste better separate, at least the way I tried to mix them. Maybe with effort the mix could be improved, but I don't feel like making the effort, since I doubt the mix will ever taste better than pure Teeccino.)


For many months, I had been noticing a craving to have more than just a single 12 ounce mug of tea per day. Not immediately after my first (and usually only) cup - but instead, annoyingly late in my "day", approaching my bedtime (which could be literally any time of day or night, due to my severe sleep issues).

I nearly always resisted the urge. But, maybe that craving was an indication I was even more addicted than I realized?


Even when I wasn't actively trying to quit tea, I got headaches on occasion. But, because I seldom went much longer than a day without having tea, I usually assumed those headaches weren't caffeine-related. But perhaps a lot of those headaches actually were from insufficient caffeine?

So, maybe at least some of my problems with occasional "random" headaches will finally go away once I get free of caffeine addiction.


Additions, 7:22 PM/7:46 PM. Here's an article from Smithsonian Magazine about what caffeine does to your brain.

Today it seems I mistakenly drank too little tea to totally get rid of my headache. I'm so annoyed by this I think I might go ahead and just immediately quit completely, so I can hopefully get through this withdrawal nonsense as quickly as possible.

So, I'm probably going to be particularly boring and useless for a while, since I'm going to continue mostly avoiding stressful things, and probably mostly read a lot and binge-watch Netflix and YouTube.


Addition, 8:50 PM EDT. Just found out from this page that my former usual daily tea only contains about 40 mg of caffeine per cup.

That sounds like a tiny amount. But, maybe it isn't tiny for me, since I'm only 5'4" and maybe 120 lbs. (Just guessing since I don't have a scale.) In any case, tea definitely has had very noticeable effects on how alert I am and how well I'm able to concentrate, and also tends to improve my mood.

But, the good effects don't last long enough for my liking, and I'm tired of feeling overly tired without caffeine, waking up feeling insufficiently rested, and especially tired of the possibility that perhaps a lot of my headaches are related to not drinking enough caffeine at the "right" time, whenever that is - which might be particularly hard for me to figure out due to my messed up circadian rhythms.

Hopefully the withdrawal won't last too long because I already had been working on gradually decreasing my tea intake. At the moment I'm feeling mostly OK, just tired now, probably partly because the last time I slept, I only slept about 4 hours because of a headache.


Addition, Aug. 4, 2016, 1:08 AM EDT. Spinning in my office chair and making myself dizzy distracts a bit from my headaches!


Additions, Aug. 4, 2016, 6:18/6:35 PM EDT. No headache since maybe 1:30 AM. But, I've been pretty tired (even after a long sleep), anxious, and foggy-minded.

I guess I probably am hypersensitive to caffeine, though at least I'm not so hypersensitive that I experience nothing but negative effects from caffeine. But I think roughly 12 ounces of tea per day must have been at least a little too much for me. But maybe if I simply drink less per day, that will work for me, hopefully with all good effects and no bad effects?

I got a new, larger mug earlier this year. Didn't realize that might cause me trouble. But even the previous amount I was drinking might have been too much, if caffeine withdrawal was a significant factor in a lot of the headaches I've gotten over the years.


Addition, Aug. 4, 2016, 7:30 PM EDT. I figured out that my supposedly 12 ounce mug might actually hold more than 12 ounces, since I was able to pour 2 nearly full cups of water into it from an 8.5 ounce styrofoam cup. I don't have a measuring cup, so I can't measure it more exactly, but, it now looks like maybe I had been drinking close to 16 ounces of tea per day.

Trying to quit tea has been such an annoying disruption to my life and ability to get anything done that I've decided to resume drinking tea, but from an 8.5 ounce styrofoam cup instead. I just had some and already feel a bit better.


Additions, Aug. 4/5, 2016, 7:50 PM/12:51 AM EDT. I still don't want to be stuck drinking tea for the rest of my life, so, my next caffeine reduction strategy will be to add a small amount of this Mount Hagen organic instant coffee (or this cheaper pack of 2) to my Teeccino.

I tried that coffee a few years ago and liked it a lot, so I'm guessing the flavor will probably blend well with Teeccino.


Addition, Aug. 7, 2016, 6:10 AM EDT. No headaches lately, and I got the coffee, and it's good in (or out of) Teeccino. Maybe I'm doing better overall with less caffeine, but, it's hard to tell at the moment, since yesterday, I had to wake up unusually early (for me), and didn't go back to sleep yet, so I'm quite tired now. I still feel like I want to take a long vacation from everything stressful.

Here's the most interesting article I've seen recently about caffeine and its effects:

Coffee Time: How caffeine shifts our circadian clocks.
(Sept. 17, 2015, from Slate.com)

Quotes:

"The way caffeine works on cells in the body might be different than how it works on the brain."

[...]

"jet lag isn’t just the fact that your brain is in another time zone—it’s that your liver might be in a different time zone than your brain.”


Addition, Aug. 8, 2016, 3:51 PM EDT. I don't feel perfect yet, and I still feel like I could go back to sleep again soon, but, upon waking up today, I think I felt better-rested than I had for several months. No headaches, and I feel overall calmer.

I got my new mug (which I thought was 12 ounces but actually was larger) back in February, so I guess I had been at least slightly overdosing on caffeine since around then.


Additions, Aug. 9, 2016, 3:46 AM EDT, etc. I wish I had gone back to sleep, but I didn't. I thought I felt better-rested than usual, but that feeling didn't last long.

I don't know if still having a little caffeine is helping, or making things worse. I think now that I'm so close to having no caffeine, I'll just go without it completely for a while.

I guess another possible contributor to my various ailments might be Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), but, for now, I don't want to get into the details of why I think that. I'd rather focus on positive things.


Addition, Aug. 10, 2016, 1:21 PM EDT. Got a headache last night, and gave in and drank some coffee, which didn't fully get rid of it. but I'm OK now. It is definitely nice to feel like sleep is doing me more good than it had been.


Addition, Aug. 11, 2016, 6:07 PM EDT. No headaches, and my old vigor has been coming back after probably months of absence. Even though I had to get up overly early for something today and am thus tired, I still have felt better than I had in a long time.

So, maybe I finally really will try bellydancing and a standing desk sometime.

It seems like I'm OK as long as I don't have too much caffeine. So, yesterday evening and today, mostly just for flavor's sake, I put a small amount of coffee - probably less than a teaspoon - in my Teeccino.


Addition, Aug. 13, 2016, 9:46 PM EDT. Had to wake up too early for various reasons on Aug. 12th, so wasn't doing as well yesterday. Slept longer today but am not as energetic as I was on Aug. 11. (Perhaps that energy came from the small amount of caffeine I might have had that day.)

Still, no headaches. And, no caffeine since Aug. 12th or possibly Aug. 11th. I got my Teeccino Boutique Sampler on Aug. 11th, so I mostly avoided putting coffee in them since I wanted to see how they tasted without it.

Another symptom I neglected to mention, which has been a problem for maybe years now, is that I often wake up very thirsty, and this often wakes me up repeatedly while I'm trying to sleep.

And I've had some jaw pain from time to time. My current top theory on that is, maybe it's from magnesium deficiency caused by consuming too many oxalates. (Oxalates are antinutrients found in many common foods.) So I wrote a new blog post on those topics:

Oxalates and their interference with the absorption of nutrients


Addition, Aug. 14, 2016, 1:02 AM EDT. Oops, getting absentminded. Judging by what I wrote above on Aug. 11th, I definitely added a bit of coffee to one of my Teeccinos that day. So, actually, I've been caffeine-free since Aug. 12th, not the 11th.

Additions, 1:30 AM EDT, etc. Don't know when I'll feel normal again (without resorting to caffeine). But, even though I've felt tired, I still feel less tired and better-rested compared to the past several months. But I think I better keep avoiding stressful things and instead do less challenging things like reading books and watching videos.

Despite my tiredness, I've still been learning a lot from The Art of Unix Programming by Eric S. Raymond. I wish I had read that years ago.

Addition, Aug. 14. 2016, 7:20 PM EDT. Decided to probably continue adding small amounts of coffee to my Teeccino, since I like the taste, and even a small amount of caffeine seems to make me feel better and more capable of getting useful things done.


Addition, Aug. 15, 2016, 4:55 AM EDT. I found a blog post by someone who reported experiencing caffeine withdrawal symptoms for up to 5 months!

I'm actually comforted to know it can take that long, because I was worried that I should be much more recovered by now, and worried that maybe my various remaining ailments were caused more by other things than by caffeine withdrawal.

So, that helps rid me of some anxiety. I also read that muscle aches can be a symptom of caffeine withdrawal, so, that could at least partly explain my jaw aches.

That blog post's description of Month 5 gives me something to look forward to.

However, I'm going to probably slightly increase my daily coffee dosage, because I think I need a bit more to minimize my withdrawal symptoms.


Addition, Aug. 18, 2016, 9:07 PM EDT. My jaw aches have been fluctuating between being mostly gone, and still being slightly there. Perhaps magnesium, kale, ground flaxseed (warning), and/or Nature Made Stress B helped.

The past couple days, I had to wake up too early for various reasons, so, I'm probably tired just because of that. But also, I think even the small amount of coffee I had - maybe about a teaspoon - probably made me stay awake longer than I otherwise might have.

So, I'm going to try having an even more minimal and less frequent amount of coffee, like, less than a teaspoon and not daily. My main goal is just to minimize caffeine withdrawal symptoms.

I think I need more sleep, so I don't expect to accomplish much of anything in the very near future. But, in the past few days, I made some progress with XSLT and VUE: Visual Understanding Environment. Which is actually getting me interested in learning more about functional programming in general.


Additions, Aug. 24, 2016, 3:03 AM EDT, etc. Aug. 23rd was the first day my jaw started feeling mostly back to normal! Still been tired, but that's partly because of having to wake up too early. But even so, I've still been feeling more well-rested than I did before trying to quit caffeine.

And I've even made surprisingly good progress with XSLT, though I still find it pretty confusing. But I finally did manage to extract node label data from a VUE: Visual Understanding Environment concept map!


And, I think I want to learn more about one of the most mystifying programming languages I've ever encountered - Haskell. Things that take many lines of code in other languages can be squeezed into much fewer lines of code in Haskell. Much fewer, but much more indecipherable, at least for me so far.

So, I hope to read Learn You a Haskell for Great Good! and Real World Haskell at some point. I sure hope I have the brains to learn this stuff. :-)

I guess this is a particularly good time for me to study Haskell, because if it turns out to be hopelessly difficult, I can blame my caffeine withdrawal symptoms, tiredness, etc. And if I actually do get somewhere with Haskell, I'll feel particularly pleased with myself for being able to do that despite my caffeine withdrawal symptoms, tiredness, etc. :-)


I still have been having less than a teaspoon of coffee daily, but hopefully will start skipping days soon.

I think more often than not, throughout my life, ever since I was a child, I have been regularly consuming some amount of caffeine, either in the form of caffeinated soda, tea, or more rarely, coffee.

I wonder if I was always more sensitive to caffeine than I realized? Maybe this is yet another possible cause of my severe sleep issues.

Of course, I always knew better than to drink caffeine too near bedtime. (Even as a child, I was aware that was a bad idea, thanks to being told by my relatives.) But maybe I always was so caffeine-sensitive that the sleep-disrupting effects persisted longer for me than they do for many people?

I very much doubt that completely quitting caffeine would completely cure my my severe sleep issues, since I think there were probably times in my life when I wasn't drinking caffeine regularly and I still had sleep problems. But, I'll just see what happens, I guess.


Addition, Aug. 24, 2016, 6:36 AM EDT. One difference in my life yesterday compared to all the other days I've been decreasing caffeine is that I got a lot more exercise than usual. Had to walk around a lot.

And, also, I finally tried my $10 (ten dollar) used bike for the first time since I was given it a few months ago. I hadn't ridden a bike since I was maybe 9 or something, but, it seems science was right - I hadn't forgotten how to ride.

And I even managed to avoid falling off at all, even despite zipping around a corner at slightly worryingly high speed, due to not realizing that the brakes were controlled not by pedaling in reverse, but by squeezing some things attached to the handlebars.

Should have made sure I knew how the brakes worked before I started going a bit fast, but, oops. :-) Going uphill and into some grass also helped slow me down.

Anyway, I just found it interesting that my increased exercise coincided with my jaw aches being quite reduced. Though I don't know whether or not exercise actually had anything to do with that, since correlation does not necessarily imply causation.


Addition, Aug. 26, 2016, 2:39 AM EDT. Had no caffeine from the evening of Aug. 23rd to the evening of Aug. 25th. But, it seems like I need to keep having it to avoid getting in a bad mood. So I guess I'll keep having it daily, but keep gradually decreasing the amount.

Still have been getting jaw aches. Haven't gotten anything interesting done. I actually fell asleep at an unusually early time in my sleep/wake "cycle", though only for a few hours. I think maybe I fell asleep because I've been eating dried sour/tart cherries, which are reputed to contain a lot of melatonin - even more melatonin than walnuts, which themselves sometimes seem to have a pretty strong effect on me, and sometimes seem to make me sleepy in less than an hour (unless I'm already quite well-rested at the time I eat them). (Addition, March 20, 2017, 11:57 AM. However, I wonder if dried sour/tart cherries have a different amount of melatonin than non-dried ones?)

Earlier this evening, all my relatives (all of whom also ate those dried sour/tart cherries) also went to sleep earlier than usual, even though one had also taken a nap during the day.

I had two small handfuls of dried sour/tart cherries a few hours ago, and have been on the verge of sleep for a long time since then, though I've been successfully resisting it so far. However, I think maybe I better avoid eating those except when I really want to feel sleepy.


Addition, Sept. 4, 2016, 11:01 PM EDT. I tried decreasing my caffeine probably too soon again - a small amount of coffee every 2 days. Now I've got a bad headache, and also a cold-like symptom - a slightly cloggy nose. I wonder if it actually is a cold.

I really wish I could just quit caffeine completely and immediately, but, that doesn't seem like a good or feasible idea with these horrible headaches and inability to get much of anything done. At least my jaw aches have been pretty much gone since a few days ago.

Next, I'm going to get some small measuring spoons so I can measure more precisely how much coffee I'm having.


Addition, Sept. 5, 2016, 3:34 AM EDT. Had a small amount of coffee in my Teeccino several hours ago, and have been feeling better since then. I was afraid it might not help since I had a similar amount around maybe 6 AM on Sept. 4 and actually felt worse several hours after that. But, I guess now, maybe I've accumulated enough caffeine in my system to reduce my withdrawal symptoms.

Anyway, hopefully just measuring the coffee more carefully, and having it daily, but continuing to decrease the amounts, will help.

I haven't been totally unable to do anything lately. Until yesterday, I think I was mostly feeling OK, which I guess tricked me into thinking I was less caffeine-dependent than I actually still am.

Been glancing at lots of different legally-available ebooks via my local library website Clevnet. But, I actually borrowed then returned so many different ebooks in such a short period of time that Clevnet automatically restricted me from borrowing anything else for 7 days! (Addition, Sept. 7, 2016, 9:07 AM EDT. Seems it was only 5 days, since now I can borrow books again!) I mistakenly thought the only restriction was that you could only borrow 20 books at the same time. I don't even know where I could have found out (without accidentally reaching the limit) that borrowing and quickly returning 100 books (or whatever number I borrowed) isn't allowed.

I guess in the future, I better use the Sample feature more, instead of briefly borrowing entire books just to see if I actually want to read them.

Fortunately, I still have 15 already-borrowed books to look at. Probably the most useful ones I have are:


Addition, Sept. 9, 2016, 4:27 PM EDT. Today, I received these measuring spoons, with these sizes: "1/64, 1/32, 1/16, 1/8, 1/4, 1/3, 1/2, 3/4, 1 teaspoon, 1 Tablespoon, 1-1/2 Tablespoon and 2"

So, today, I had 1/8th of a teaspoon of coffee in my Teeccino. Looking forward to decreasing the amount of coffee, because I've been feeling too tired again lately.

And I just got these books (among many others) today on Clevnet:


Addition, Sept. 10, 2016, 8:21 AM EDT. Been reading Adrenal Fatigue For Dummies, and that has gotten me interested in getting a blood pressure monitor, especially since this one only costs $19.99.

I've only had a very small amount of dizziness lately - just for a minute or so while I was sitting (or partway lying) on my bed several days ago or something. But maybe back in April, I remember once I felt dizzy and faint when I stood up, though that quickly passed.

Dizziness has definitely not been a frequent symptom of mine, so I'm not particularly worried about it - just curious. I've never known what my blood pressure is since I never had a way to measure it myself.


The book also suggests taking your temperature. This interests me not only because of my possible adrenal fatigue, but also because I think I've sometimes read on the Niteowl mailing list that your temperature and your circadian rhythms are related.

So, I wonder if maybe frequently taking my temperature will give me some sort of insight into my possible Non-24-hour Sleep-Wake Disorder.


I feel vaguely tired and wish I could go back to sleep, but, despite briefly trying, I wasn't able to fall asleep again after sleeping from around 8:20 PM to 4:10 AM.

But, I feel like I'm able to concentrate pretty well (even though I haven't had any coffee yet), and I managed to finish reading XSLT For Dummies. I feel like I learned a lot and am well-equipped to proceed with the little XSLT project I began days before finding XSLT For Dummies.

I don't feel very physically energetic, but I feel eager to read a lot more and quite possibly get back to my XSLT and Perl coding.


Additions, 8:40/8:43 AM EDT. Yesterday I found out that there are two new Star Trek Continues episodes that I haven't watched yet! One from May 28th, and one from Sept. 3rd.


Addition, Sept. 11, 2016, 9:29 AM EDT. Yesterday evening I had a slight headache, perhaps since I had only 1/16th of a teaspoon of coffee yesterday, but that's gone now. My jaw aches have been recurring a bit, but, hopefully they'll go away as I continue to decrease caffeine.


Being reminded yesterday of the connection between temperature and circadian rhythms made me wonder (again) if perhaps my electric blanket has been causing me problems.

Despite the hot weather, I still have been using my electric blanket all year, since I keep my room pretty cold with air conditioning.

So, since someone just happened to give me some new non-electric blankets recently, I decided to use just them. Today, I woke up around 5 AM since I finally got cold, but, I just put on an extra blanket and went back to sleep for another few hours. And I might have stayed asleep even longer, except my nice, big, heavy old keyboard (which is so old it has a PS/2 plug instead of a USB plug) fell off my bed and woke me up.

So, I slept from about 8 PM to 8 AM today! I haven't been keeping a spreadsheet of my sleep lately, because I haven't yet figured out how to make a Gantt chart (or whatever else I need, whatever it's called) using Gnumeric. So, I mostly don't have nice charts of my sleep patterns yet. (Ooh, maybe this is another thing XML and XSLT might be useful for?)


Anyway, though - I think most of the time for months, I've usually only been able to sleep a maximum of 6-8 hours and often less, which has seemed weird for me, because I used to be able to sleep longer, and it often seemed like I needed to sleep an extra amount of time (like maybe 12 to 15 hours) to make up for getting too little sleep in the recent past.

Probably the longest I ever slept was about 25 hours. I don't remember the exact circumstances or when exactly that happened, just that it was probably sometime in the past 10 years. But, I think probably I was just recovering from having been awake far too long for some reason(s) soon before that. It probably sounds unhealthy to sleep so long, but if I recall correctly, I felt much better after I did that, and I quickly and without trying got back to my "normal" (for me) schedule after that.


So far today, I haven't even had any coffee yet, but, I think I do feel more rested than usual. This seems like a pretty promising result, so, I think in addition to caffeine, I'm going to quit my electric blanket that I've been addicted to, too. :-) Should have tried that sooner.


Addition, Sept. 11, 2016, 1:02 PM EDT. This has been my most high-energy day in a long time! I hadn't even gotten out of bed yet when I wrote the preceding paragraphs.

But after getting out of bed, my increased energy was really noticeable. I actually feel largely back to what used to be normal for me (when adequately rested) - having so much energy I almost don't know what to do with it!

I have more of a spring in my step, and have been cheerfully zooming up and down stairs, and fidgeting a lot more. :-) Doing physical things seems much more effortless now, rather than a chore that I need willpower to force myself to do. And learning to bellydance seems a lot more feasible now. :-) (I actually scarcely tried bellydancing ever since I first mentioned it, and also scarcely tried my standing desk, which is covered with junk now, along with my office chair, since I usually hadn't had the energy to clean my room.)


Because of what I read in Adrenal Fatigue For Dummies yesterday, I was thinking I should try to avoid sugar more. And I was going to start that today - but I felt so much better today that I let myself have an unusually large number of chocolate fudge Pirouettes - about 12. And I still feel fine.

And now I'm having 1/16th of a teaspoon of coffee in my still not-yet-finished pumpkin spice Teeccino.

I'm so relieved. I feel reborn, or like I've youthened about 10 or 15 years. Hopefully this will last. :-)


Addition, Sept. 12, 2016, 8:37 AM EDT. Slept between almost 1 AM and almost 8 AM. I have a slight headache now, probably from too little caffeine, which I think is what woke me up.

Yesterday, I had a pretty good day, but started to feel more tired around 6:20 PM. Still, yesterday was very encouraging, and I think I still feel overall better than usual today.

But, the mental fogginess I seem to get when low on caffeine has been coming back despite my greatly increased physical energy. So, maybe I'll try a little more than 1/16th of a teaspoon of coffee. But, I think maybe I'd rather not have any coffee right now because I think I might like to go back to sleep soon.


Addition, Sept. 12, 2016, 11:36 AM EDT. Stayed awake. 1/16th + 1/32nd of a teaspoon of coffee wasn't enough to get rid of my headache, so I just took an Advil.

I think I'm going to just keep decreasing caffeine (or maybe quit it entirely), and use painkillers to deal with the headaches, since this has dragged on long enough.


Addition, 8:34 PM EDT. Without my headache, I definitely feel much better, just more foggy-minded than yesterday, and like I want to go to sleep again, but I still feel physically energetic. I suspect my sleep is more restorative now that I quit my electric blanket.

Yesterday was the most dramatic improvement I've had for months, and it coincided with me ceasing to use my electric blanket.

I'm sure reducing caffeine has helped me too, but I'm really surprised and delighted at what a difference quitting my electric blanket may have made.


Addition, Sept. 13, 2016, 1:17 PM EDT. Slept pretty well from around 2:20 AM to 9:50 AM. No headache, and I still have plenty of energy, though maybe not as much as when I had a little coffee and some chocolate fudge Pirouettes.

I suspect now that my problem probably wasn't adrenal fatigue (or maybe I had a bit of that before, but have recovered from it a lot). I think now my main problem was probably chronically poor sleep, primarily due to my electric blanket, and probably also because of formerly having too much caffeine, partly because of not realizing I had a 17 ounce mug instead of a 12 ounce mug.

And since quitting my electric blanket seemed to make such a profound difference so quickly, I now think caffeine was probably much less of a problem than my electric blanket - even though decreasing caffeine definitely seemed to help too, just not as much.

But, even though caffeine was quite possibly less of a problem for me than I thought, I'm still not eager to resume drinking tea or larger amounts of coffee. I'd rather totally do without caffeine for a while. Maybe I'll resume it someday, or use it just on occasion when I actually have a reason to forcibly keep myself awake.

But, since I'm not even sure if I ever did without caffeine longer than a few weeks or maybe months ever since the year 2000, I'm quite curious to see how life seems without caffeine.


Now that I feel so much better, I'm partway grateful for the very upsetting misfortune that happened to me earlier this year.

Before that happened, I already hadn't been at my best for quite a while, but, I wasn't feeling bad enough to seriously consider giving up caffeine or my electric blanket, and, while I was a bit worried, I rather cynically assumed maybe my tiredness was just an unavoidable part of getting older. (Or that maybe I was getting diabetes, or who knows what.)

But, after that misfortune happened, I was so upset and stressed out that it caused my tiredness to get much worse. So, that motivated me to look for solutions, got me even more interested in nutrition and exercise, and made me more eager than ever before to quit caffeine and even my electric blanket.

If that misfortune hadn't happened, it might have taken a lot longer for me to do all that, and I might have continued gradually getting more and more unhealthy and exhausted.

So... at least that misfortune had a silver lining in the end. It's still sad, but, that's life, I guess. Those were some really sour lemons, but at least this is some great lemonade, which might have changed the entire course of my life for the better, since now I have a lot more energy and ability to work on my numerous projects and goals.


Addition, Sept. 14, 2016, 1:10 PM EDT. Slept from around 1 AM to around 10:05 AM. Yesterday I sometimes felt like I was verging on a headache, but I've been fine today so far. A bit foggy-minded, but still plenty of energy.

The thing that currently most tempts me to drink a bit of coffee is, the hope of getting rid of the slight foggy-mindedness, so I can more easily proceed with my XSLT and Perl project that I've scarcely returned to working on yet.

But compared to a headache, this is scarcely an obstruction at all. I still managed to quickly brainstorm some probably good ideas for someone who asked for my feedback on something. I just feel a bit weird, and am a little forgetful.


Addition, 3:40 PM EDT. Just found this article: Vitamin C: Stress Buster

Good thing I've been taking at least two 500 mg Vitamin C's per day since last April, since judging by that article, it's possible I would have been worse off otherwise.

Lately it has seemed like I need even more Vitamin C than just 1000 mg soon after I wake up, because the lower left sore spot on my gums has been coming back. So, I'm going to take at least one 500 mg Vitamin C later in my day as well, in addition to my usual Nature Made Stress B.

Maybe I need extra Vitamin C due to caffeine withdrawal?


Thanks to my increased energy, I got a bit more creative than usual with cooking - microwaved some potatoes, then added butter, milk, and salt, and mashed it all up to make mashed potatoes. It was fairly good, though it seemed to be lacking something. Tried extra butter, which helped, and also some black pepper and nutmeg, which also helped, but I'm not sure yet what will make it perfect.

But, after eating that, I got tired. Actually, even before that, I was feeling a bit tired. I'm guessing this is probably related to having no caffeine at all ever since the morning of Sept. 12th. Still, I'm doing much better than I was before quitting my electric blanket. Even when sleepy, doing physical things now still seems much easier than it did before quitting my electric blanket.

Since I have no job or any other pressing reason to stay awake, I might just go to sleep sometime in the next few hours. Except I'd kind of like to read or something, so, that might or might not keep me awake.


Addition, Sept. 14, 2016, 7:55 PM EDT. Stayed awake to read. And decided to have 1/64th of a teaspoon of coffee, since if caffeine withdrawal is so hard on me as to necessitate an increase in my Vitamin C, I think I'd rather just keep easing off of caffeine instead of completely stopping it immediately. And I feel like I'm on the verge of a headache, and would really like to get some useful stuff done.


Addition, Sept. 15, 2016, 11:43 AM EDT. I'm not sure if it was Vitamin C or the 1/64th teaspoon of coffee that made me feel a bit better last night, but something worked.

Went to sleep around 11:40 PM, and today I felt like I slept so long and well that I was surprised to see it was only 8:59 AM instead of 2 PM when I woke up. Still lots of energy.


Addition, 7:36 PM EDT. Had 1/64th of a teaspoon of coffee in the morning, and another 1/64th around 6 PM since I was feeling some craving for caffeine. Tomorrow I'll probably just have 1/32nd of a teaspoon soon after I wake up, in the hope that I'll avoid craving it at any time approaching bedtime.

Haven't needed to take extra Vitamin C beyond my usual two 500 mg Vitamin C's when I wake up, since the sore spot on my gum has been OK ever since my first 1/64th of a teaspoon of coffee today, though it was bothering me a little before I had that coffee.

My energy lasted a while, and I didn't feel foggy-minded until getting tired around maybe 6:30 PM. Still, didn't get much done today. I watched TV, vacuumed a room (which is something I do rarely), and read a little. And worked a little on my XSLT project - made some notes and some hopefully good design decisions, but didn't actually write code today.


Addition, Sept. 16, 2016, 1:40 PM EDT. Netflix kept me awake, so, I slept between around 2 AM and 10 AM. Slept pretty well, and still have a lot of energy, though sometimes it has seemed like I get a bit tired after eating. Actually, I'm starting to feel a bit tired right now.

But everything seems better than before I quit my electric blanket. Even just thinking seems easier than it has in a long time. So, I've been making progress with XSLT.

As planned, had 1/32nd of a teaspoon of coffee in my Teeccino this morning.

My sleep schedule has been interestingly close to normal-seeming for the past several days, since I've been sleeping at night and awake during the day. I'll be quite surprised if that lasts.

I wish I had some nice sleep charts like these for recent months so I could get more of an overview of what has been going on with me.


Additions, Sept. 16, 2016, 7:10 PM EDT, etc. Had a nap sometime between 3:32 PM (the most recent time in my web browser history before waking) and 6:30 PM. Didn't intend or plan to, but, I had no reason to stop myself when it turned out I seemed to need a nap.

Before quitting my electric blanket, I seldom was even able to fall asleep for a nap, despite frequently feeling tired enough to do so. So, I think this is probably progress too.

My lack of sleepiness definitely hasn't been lasting all day (even though physical activity still seems much easier than it used to while sleepy), and if Netflix hadn't kept me awake last night, I might've been able to fall asleep any time from around 6:30 PM onward yesterday. But it makes sense that it might take longer than less than a week of good sleep for me to recover from the fatigue (or whatever) caused primarily by my electric blanket which I got back in Nov. 2014, and my mistakenly oversized tea mug which I got in Feb. 2016, which was 17 ounces instead of 12 ounces.

And also to recover from caffeine withdrawal, which (according to this aforementioned blog post) can take 5 months for some people. And I suspect that includes me, since even though I never drank a huge amount of caffeine, I think it affected me a lot more than it should have, since I now think I am probably much more caffeine sensitive than I originally realized.

1/64th of a teaspoon is such a tiny-looking amount of coffee, and yet I think I've felt a difference even just from that. Unless it's just a placebo effect - but, even if that's all it is, fine, since I'm definitely feeling better in any case.


Additions, Sept. 17, 2016, 2:30/2:42 AM EDT. Getting sleepy again. Been watching Marco Polo on Netflix. I know hardly anything about the real Marco Polo or that part of history (though the show makes me curious to learn more).

But it's a good reminder that I definitely prefer the part of history I'm now living in. I'd probably rather live in the future (assuming things get better and more like Star Trek someday), but, at least the present seems a lot better in a lot of ways than probably most of the past.

That show reminds me of some of my notions about my past lives. I kind of hope reincarnation doesn't exist, because life can be pretty depressing at times. But, believing that I might have future lives at least gives me even more motivation than I already had to try to improve the world. And to improve myself - since who knows, maybe it's possible to carry talents into future lives.

I'm well-aware that reincarnation might not exist at all, but, daydreaming about future lives (and what I can do in the present to improve them) is a lot more fun than thinking about things in the nearer future, like turning 40, 50, and so on.


Addition, Sept. 17, 2016, 3:57 PM EDT. Slept between around 6:20 AM and 12:40 PM. Had only 1/64th of a teaspoon of coffee today. Still feeling great, even without extra Vitamin C.

Today, instead of taking Nature Made magnesium citrate in my "morning" as I usually have been lately, I decided to try taking it closer to the end of my day.

Since magnesium can make me tired, skipping my "morning" magnesium might be why I haven't gotten at all tired yet.

Not much else to add, since my life is pretty boring. :-) I still am having trouble making myself do boring things like clean my room and finish my little XSLT project, but that's nothing new.


Addition, Sept. 17, 2016, 11:27 PM EDT. Today was my best day so far. Didn't get sleepy all day until around 11 PM. Though I definitely wasn't doing anything very physically tiring or even intellectually challenging today - I watched Netflix most of the day, read a little, and listened a little to an audio book.

I'm so relieved and grateful that I actually have been recovering from my fatigue! I'll never sleep with an electric blanket again.


Addition, Sept. 18, 2016, 4:09 PM EDT. Slept from around 3:40 AM to 10:30 AM, then from around 11 AM to 1:30 PM. Still lots of energy.

And I'm in an especially good mood now because I managed to get Saxon/C to work with PHP 5.6.13!

So, now I can use XSLT 2.0 with my favorite programming language, PHP!


Addition, Sept. 20, 2016, 2:04 PM EDT. Slept from around 5 AM to 12:45 PM on Sept. 19th, and 3 AM to 10 AM today. Still have had lots of energy. And, since I've read so many good things about Vitamin D, I've resumed trying to take it.

I already tried Vitamin D in the past, but, I always stopped quickly before, because it seemed like it made me feel jittery. But that could be because I wasn't aware that it might be best to have it in combination with other nutrients.

This page says:

"When you're taking magnesium, you need to consider calcium, vitamin D3 and vitamin K2 as well, since these all work synergistically with one another."

I'm pretty sure I'm not getting enough Vitamin K2 from my food, but, hopefully I'm getting a lot of Vitamin K1 from all the kale I now eat, and, maybe my body is converting that to Vitamin K2, if this page is correct.

Since Sept. 18th onward, I've been taking 5 Nature Made Vitamin D3 2000 IU per day, and definitely felt more jittery in the hours afterward, until taking extra magnesium. Yesterday, I took 2 Nature Made magnesium citrates with my Vitamin D, and for hours after that still felt so jittery that I took 2 more magnesium citrates, which seemed to make it easier for me to fall asleep.


Of course, at the moment, part of my jitteriness might simply be caffeine withdrawal, since I'm reluctant to even continue with 1/32nd of a teaspoon of coffee per day. On the 18th, I had 1/32nd, but on the 19th and today, I had 1/64th.

On the 19th I got a slight headache, a lot of jitteriness (especially after the Vitamin D), and felt almost like I was starting to get a stuffy nose, but, that went away by today, even before I had any coffee. Still doing pretty well overall, but, I think I'm getting a bit of foggy-mindedness from lack of caffeine, so maybe I'll have another 1/64th teaspoon of coffee.

It's not obvious to me yet what good Vitamin D is doing me (which is another reason I never stuck with taking it), but, I'm just going to keep taking it for a while and see what happens.


Addition, Sept. 20, 2016, 5:21 PM EDT. Had another 1/64th of a teaspoon of coffee. Soooo jittery! But I blame the Vitamin D, not the coffee, since before, I was perfectly fine with 1/64th of a teaspoon of coffee.

Next time I take Vitamin D, I'm going to take 2 magnesiums instead of just one. Just took a 2nd magnesium now. Might take even more than that if necessary.

Also, I'm switching to Nature Made magnesium oxide, since (if I'm not mistaken), it's cheaper, and it seems maybe about as effective for me as the Nature Made magnesium citrate, which I'm running out of. I might also decrease the amount of Vitamin D.

Or, perhaps I should just go out in the sun for 10-20 minutes sometime between 10 AM and 2 PM, as the book Vitamin D: The Sunshine Vitamin suggests. (Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 3:57 AM. Now I'm not sure that's safe, so I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.)


Addition, Sept. 20, 2016, 9:32 PM EDT. Having a 3rd magnesium, since the 2nd magnesium helped, but not enough to stop me from thinking I might be better off giving up on Vitamin D supplements (except sunshine) until I've recovered more from fatigue and caffeine withdrawal.

Addition, 11:38 PM EDT. Already feeling better. But, I think I will take Vitamin D (except sunlight) less frequently and maybe in smaller amounts.

Addition, 11:58 PM EDT. Found this interesting forum discussion about allergic reactions to Vitamin D. Looks like a lot of people seem to react much worse to Vitamin D than I just did.

But, since I don't know of any definite way(s) Vitamin D has benefited me so far, and taking it definitely didn't seem to make me feel better than I felt before taking it, I'm tempted to just stop it entirely for now (except for sunlight).


Additions, Sept. 21, 2016, 2:05/2:14 PM EDT. Slept between around 5 AM and 1:18 PM. Just like the other days, the jitteriness from Vitamin D(?) completely wore off (or quite probably the magnesium eased it) by the time I woke up, and I feel fine again. Still lots of energy.

And I even woke up in time to get some sun. But, I only did that for about 10 minutes since it was boring, hot (at least in the sun), and too bright to comfortably read. And I might easily get sunburned.

I guess sitting in direct sunlight might become more pleasant to do as the weather gets cooler, but, Vitamin D: The Sunshine Vitamin said:

"In Boston, Massachusetts, at roughly 42 degrees north, sun exposure is not sufficient for vitamin D production from November through February."

And here in Hubbard, Ohio, I'm at about 41 degrees north.

(Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:00 AM. I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.)


Another interesting thing that book mentioned was:

"The vitamin D formed in this way does not immediately travel through the skin into the bloodstream. This process takes up to forty-eight hours. Showering and scrubbing your skin within forty-eight hours of exposure could conceivably wash away the vitamin D on the skin's surface and prevent absorption into the bloodstream. This may be why so many people are vitamin D deficient despite hours of sun exposure. They may actually be wiping away the vitamin D long before it can be absorbed."

That problem won't affect me so much, because I rarely take showers because I rarely have to go out anywhere, and it saves money not to use so much water and heat, since my family keeps the heat turned off until someone actually needs to take a shower.

We've done this ever since 2005 when we couldn't afford to pay our gas bill for about 3 months in the spring or summer. Most of us got accustomed to usually only having cold water. (As for me, I just didn't take a shower for 3 months. :-D ) So, that company was really stupid for shutting us off, because the result of that was, we found we liked using less hot water and paying them less money. :-)

Fortunately, wasting less energy and water is probably better for the planet somehow.


Additions, Sept. 22, 2016, 3:09 AM/3:14 EDT. Had mostly a good day, except I started to get a headache around 6:20 PM. It temporarily went away after I had another 1/64th of a teaspoon of coffee, but, the headache came back around 12:40 AM.

I don't want to have more caffeine so late in my day, so, I just had an Advil.

I wish I could figure out the perfect amount of coffee to have for me to avoid headaches (and all other symptoms) and keep making progress quitting caffeine. I don't want to be stuck having to have even just 1/64th of a teaspoon of coffee per day.

Maybe a spreadsheet and some graphs would help me figure this out.


I sure hope quitting caffeine will cure most of my headache problems. It probably won't cure them all, since I'm sure many of my past headaches were probably related to insufficient nutrition, and others were likely from PMS, etc.

The symptoms of my monthly cycle - mainly the cramps - are so unpleasant it's similar to having an illness every month. But, fortunately, it's seldom bad enough after the first day for me to need painkillers after the first day, and usually the painkillers get rid of all the pain. I find it interesting how consistent and reliable that pattern has been ever since I was a teenager - in contrast with the mess my sleep so-called schedule has usually been for my whole life. The timing of the start of my cycle can be delayed a lot if I'm stressed out, but, once it gets started, the way it happens is very reliable - the first day is the worst, then it's much less bad after that.

Anyway, if quitting caffeine doesn't turn out to be a sufficient cure for most of my headaches, maybe I might as well keep having a tiny amount of caffeine, since maybe it actually helps more than it harms.


The one Advil I had isn't seeming effective enough - I'm still a bit headachy, and getting a vaguely stuffy nose, and am almost having nausea. So, I guess I'll just have another 1/64th of a teaspoon of coffee. Headaches and nausea interfere with my sleep more than caffeine does, I think.

It almost seems like a cold, but I strongly suspect it's just caffeine withdrawal and will probably go away when I have enough coffee.


I managed to clean my room a bit. Didn't do as much with XSLT as I did on 9/20 and early 9/21, but XSLT is a lot more fun to play with now that I can use it with PHP, my favorite programming language.

XSLT has been quite difficult to figure out, but, I love how it can accomplish so much with such relatively compact scripts. I'm increasingly fond of it and XML.


Addition, Sept. 22, 2016, 3:55 AM EDT. Already been feeling better for a while. Either the 1/64th teaspoon of coffee worked, or it took much, much longer than usual for the Advil to start working. Despite the coffee, I still feel tired enough to sleep.


Additions, Sept. 22, 2016, 10:27 PM/10:44 PM EDT. Slept sometime between around 5 AM to 1:30 PM. Still lots of energy, verging on too much. :-)

I skipped sunlight today. (Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:01 AM. Which may have been a good thing. I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.) Forgot to take any magnesium, so I've been a little jittery, but not as much as I was when I took Vitamin D. To try to calm down a bit, I took 2 Nature Made magnesium citrates (which is a single serving of the kind I have, which aren't liquid softgels). Despite that, I still have been a bit jittery, but I didn't take any more, since I didn't want to possibly make myself tired.

Felt close to a headache, maybe starting around 6:30 PM, so I had 1/64th teaspoon of coffee around then, and have felt fine since then.

I've divided my time between cleaning my overcrowded mess of a room, and struggling to figure out how to do something in XSLT which I assumed would be much easier than it actually is.

None of that is very exciting to do or to write about. But, it's so nice to actually really feel like doing things again. I was still capable of getting things done before solving my fatigue (particularly if I did them soon after waking up), but, it took a lot more effort.


Addition, Sept. 23, 2016, 4:01 PM EDT. Slept between maybe 6:20 AM and 1:15 PM. Got a bit of sun between about 1:36 PM and 1:44 PM, but not much, since direct sun is way too hot very quickly, and it felt like it might be very easy to get sunburned. Too bad I don't own a bikini - then I could probably spend even less time sunning. (Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:03 AM. I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.)


I guess my top goal for today should be to clean my room sufficiently so I can use my box fan again to block noise, so dog barking won't wake me up anymore, as it did today. (But at least our dog waking me up made it possible for me to get some sun at an appropriate time of day.) (Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:03 AM. Maybe not as appropriate as I thought. I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.)

And also, so I'll finally have enough space again to work on learning to bellydance, without having to stand on my bed.

But I might just go back to sleep again for a while.


Before I went to sleep this morning, I spent hours reading Dark Deception: Discover the Truth About the Benefits of Sunlight Exposure by Dr. Joseph Mercola, which is available from my local library's website, Clevnet. (So far, I only skimmed the other Vitamin D books I got from there.)

I really like that book, and I'm now quite convinced that doing something about my probable Vitamin D deficiency is worthwhile.

I particularly like the fact that Vitamin D might reduce symptoms of PMS, and also can help with dental problems. And tons of other things.


Additions, Sept. 23/24, 2016, 11:25 PM/9:15 AM EDT. Went back to sleep from around 6:20 PM to 10:15 PM, perhaps partly because of PMS (which sometimes can make me extra-tired. And the unpleasantness that follows PMS makes me even more tired). And maybe partly because I'm now trying to get by with as little caffeine as possible. I haven't had any coffee since Sept. 22nd, but plan on maybe having 1/64th of a teaspoon if I feel a headache starting.

Maybe I'm getting accustomed to lower amounts of caffeine, since I don't feel like I have as much foggy-mindedness now. I have a slight craving for coffee, but other than that, my most noticeable symptom has been a very slightly stuffy nose. And the sometimes recurring sore spot on my gums has been OK (actually absent) too.


I think I've been eating much better lately because I have so much more energy that I've actually felt like making food. Also, perhaps my appetite is better as a result of reducing caffeine. I've heard that caffeine can suppress your appetite, though there's conflicting info on the web about that, such as claims that caffeine only suppresses your appetite for a brief time.

But, if I'm somewhat hypersensitive to caffeine, then, maybe even the "brief" appetite suppressing effects last longer for me than the average person?

For many years, I often have had trouble with a poor appetite, and often ended up neglecting to eat for unwisely long periods of time. And at times I could scarcely stand to eat anything except yogurt, fruit, some kinds of vegetables, soup, milk, and/or juice (vegetable or fruit), since even the thought of other, more substantial foods was nauseating.

I often have had much more difficulty than the rest of my family making myself eat whatever food is around. And I wasn't just being "precious" or a "diva" or "picky". I think maybe in some ways I'm just a lot more hypersensitive and fragile than average, though fortunately some of that's reduced when I get adequate sleep.


Addition, Sept. 24, 2016, 9:52 AM EDT. Been awake all night. Hours ago, I felt almost like I was starting to get a headache, but that went away quickly on its own. So, still no caffeine yet. But I'm definitely feeling more foggy-minded and out of it, and definitely am craving some caffeine.

Definitely not in the best mood - I haven't even looked at any XSLT today but I still feel overwhelmed by it, and the mountain of other things I want to do which are likely to take a long time and be very difficult, especially if this foggy, out of it feeling doesn't go away soon.

Oh, well. I'll probably feel better once I make some progress. Even just finishing cleaning my room will probably make me feel better. Didn't attempt that yet, either. But, I still have lots of physical energy. Just didn't feel like doing much of anything besides reading the web.

Anyway, hopefully the longer I can tough this caffeine withdrawal out, the quicker I can fully rid myself of caffeine addiction. And hopefully Vitamin D will help too somehow. At the moment, one of the only reasons I'm staying awake is just so I can get about 10-20 minutes of sun sometime between 10 AM-2 PM.

I found a comforting blog post which says the author's migraines were reduced by 80 or 90 percent perhaps 2 months after giving up caffeine.


Addition, Sept. 24, 2016, 2:28 PM EDT. It was too cloudy to sunbathe earlier, so I got about 20 minutes of sun between about 1:05 and 1:25 PM, with some interruptions when I got up to check what time it was. It's nicer in cooler weather - 69° today. I sure wish sunburn, melanoma, and so on didn't even exist, since sunbathing can actually be pretty nice. (Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:06 AM. I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.)

I found this web page a bit discouraging, since it says:

"How to Engineer a Successful Day of Sunbathing

[...]

So, what does your day look like?

You awake after the greatest sleep of your life, having gone to bed at the appropriate time. This is essential for successful, safe sunbathing, since our ability to repair UV-derived damage depends on a well-functioning circadian rhythm. If you didn’t sleep well or are running on a chronic sleep deficit, you may want to hold off on the sunbathing until you get your sleep in order as your skin won’t recover as well."

So, maybe I shouldn't keep myself awake just to sunbathe. In fact, maybe I shouldn't sunbathe at all (even though, ever since quitting my electric blanket, I have been well-rested lately, despite my perpetually and possibly incurably messed up circadian rhythms). Maybe I'd be better off just taking Vitamin D supplements instead.

But, hopefully it's OK as long as I don't get sunburned. (Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:06 AM. I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.)

Despite the fact that bright light is supposed to influence your circadian rhythms by waking you up, I still feel tired enough to probably go to sleep pretty soon. So, I probably will - but maybe not, who knows.


Addition, Sept. 25, 2016, 4:12 AM EDT. Slept unintentionally briefly between about 3:30 PM and 7:39 PM. Our dog woke me up. But, I actually felt (and still feel) pretty good - I haven't been craving caffeine, I don't feel so foggy-minded, and I was more excited than I maybe should be to try to read pages like this:

XQuery 1.0 and XPath 2.0 Formal Semantics (Second Edition)

I almost dove into that, but, my family was going to watch Marco Polo on Netflix, so I joined them.

Now I'm sleepy again. But I'm feeling very encouraged by feeling so much better, not getting headaches, and not craving caffeine. Didn't expect to feel so much better so soon. Maybe Vitamin D from the sun is actually having good effects on me and my mood, without making me jittery, unlike the Vitamin D supplements. (Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:08 AM. Not sure now how much Vitamin D I actually got from sunbathing at this time of year! And I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.) Or maybe even the supplements helped/are still helping too, in addition to temporarily making me jittery until I boosted my magnesium.

Didn't get sunburned. (I wore no sunscreen, since in addition to often containing harmful chemicals, sunscreen can block the UVB light which causes your skin to produce Vitamin D.) Will soon receive a bikini and beach towel. (Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:09 AM. I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.)


Addition, Sept. 25, 2016, 1:48 PM EDT. Slept from around 5:30 AM to 12:18 PM. Better dreams than I've had in a long time. Only did a little sunbathing today, between 1:12 PM and 1:18 PM. (Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:09 AM. I'm quitting sunbathing until spring 2017. Explanation here.) Still lots of physical energy, but I feel like I could go back to sleep already. Still feeling pretty good overall.


Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 1:10 AM EDT. Slept a bit from around 7 PM to 8:12 PM, and only got up so soon because I wanted to watch the most recent episode of Marco Polo on Netflix with my family.

Started out feeling quite tired, but that went away. But now, I've got a bit of a headache, though not a bad headache so far. So, it looks like my caffeine withdrawal (or PMS?) hasn't been miraculously totally cured by Vitamin D. But, I'm glad to know that such good days are possible for me even while totally doing without caffeine. And who knows, maybe the Vitamin D did have something to do with that.


On Sept. 25 I read part of a website that no longer exists and is only in Archive.org - CaffeineAndMigraine.com, which was mentioned in a blog comment I saw somewhere.

Very interesting site, with a lot of impressive scientific-looking stuff I'm not particularly qualified to understand, about things like adenosine, etc. I was pleased to see that someone who seems to understand science, biology, and medicine far better than I do had much the same theory as me - that perhaps many headaches are actually caused by caffeine, which is too often overlooked as a possible cause.

I greatly look forward to seeing if quitting caffeine really will leave me headache-free (or mostly headache free). I don't think I ever quit long enough before to find out if that really would cure me. Even if it takes 2 months to greatly reduce my headaches, or 5 months to be rid all symptoms of caffeine withdrawal, I'm really determined to stick with not having any more caffeine. Especially now that I know really good days are probably possible in the quite near future.


Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 3:43 AM EDT. Just found out that I actually probably shouldn't sunbathe at this time of year. This article explains why:

Little Sunshine Mistakes that Can Give You Cancer Instead of Vitamin D
March 26, 2012 from Mercola.com

Quote:

"So how do you know if you have entered into the summer season and into the time of year, for your location, where enough UVB is actually able to penetrate the atmosphere to allow for vitamin D production in your skin?

It should be noted that this represents a very small portion of the total radiation from the sun that reaches the earth's surface. Much is filtered out by our atmosphere. So due to the physics and wavelength of UVB rays it will only penetrate the atmosphere when the sun is above an angle of about 50° from the horizon. When the sun is lower than 50°, the ozone layer reflects the UVB-rays but let through the longer UVA-rays."


That article also points out this very useful page:

Sun or Moon Altitude/Azimuth Table

See that article for info on how to use that page.


I mistakenly thought noon would probably be the best time of day to sunbathe - but, to my surprise, that website shows that recently, the sun actually had a higher altitude here in Hubbard, Ohio at times later than noon.

So, luckily, I actually just happened to sunbathe at some of the least-bad times of day available here in Hubbard, Ohio in the past several days. But none of those times were ideal, because when I sunbathed, the sun was always lower than 50° altitude - it ranged from 48.7° to a low of 47.6°.

Oh, well. I'm giving up sunbathing until spring 2017. (Addition, Jan. 14, 2017, 7:20 AM EST. Actually, I probably won't resume it in spring 2017, or probably ever. I just don't like the scary stuff I read about things like photo-aging, DNA damage, and melanoma. And Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels seem to work fine for me.)

At least I'll soon be the proud owner of a beach towel.


Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 6:19 AM EDT. Some pages claim that 45 degrees solar elevation angle, rather than 50 degrees, is the point at which the amount of UVB light you can get from the sun is too low to produce Vitamin D. Here's an example.

And here's a magazine article I found on Academia.edu. The mention of 45 degrees is, amusingly enough, found on page 45 of the magazine.

So, maybe my time sunbathing wasn't wasted. But, I'm starting to feel rather put off by reading about things like photo-aging, DNA damage, and so on. Maybe I better just take Vitamin D supplements instead.


Additions, Sept. 26, 2016, 4:08/4:18/4:26 PM EDT. Slept well between maybe 7:30 AM and 2:13 PM. The headache wasn't too bad, so I didn't even take an Advil. Not sure what time it went away, but it didn't interfere with my sleep. I don't feel foggy-minded or out of it so far - feeling pretty good again. On second thought, maybe I do feel a bit spacy. But, lots of energy again.

Just found this interesting page:

Caffeine and Migraine
From AmericanMigraineFoundation.org

A couple quotes I found particularly interesting:

"Caffeine affects the activity of a naturally occurring and necessary brain substance called adenosine. Adenosine levels in the blood go up during migraine attacks. Furthermore, adenosine when injected into a vein can trigger migraine attacks."

[...]

"Carefully controlled studies show that caffeine doses as low as about 10mg can be reliably noticed by particularly sensitive people. These studies also show that more than 30 percent of people can feel the effects of 18mg or less."

I even feel a noticeable amount of extra alertness from a single chocolate bar, and that's not supposed to have much caffeine at all. (Google says 9 mg of caffeine for 1.5 ounces of milk chocolate.)

So, I've been avoiding chocolate too.


Here's another interesting (though jargony) page I'm sure I'm not fully understanding:

Adenosine and migraine
Feb. 1998 from ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

Quote:

"2) activation of A2 receptors by adenosine causes a dose-dependent serotonin uptake by platelets. This inhibition of uptake could participate in the rapid elimination of serotonin in migraine sufferers."

I wonder if that means somehow increasing my serotonin might help reduce my headaches?

(Addition, Sept. 26, 2016, 5:10 PM EDT. Found a page with some answers:

Quotes:

"You might think that having low levels of Serotonin in your body could put you at risk of a Serotonin migraine and that the solution is to take more Serotonin - this is not the case. The following is what may happen if a person develops, 'Serotonin syndrome,' by having levels of Serotonin that are too high."

[,,,]

"Unfortunately, if a person's Serotonin levels are too low, they may also experience Serotonin migraine. It is important to pay attention to how much you take and the side effects. There are also easy ways to naturally stimulate the production of Serotonin. Regular exercise, relaxation, walking while the sun is out, spending time with a pet, or simply enjoying yourself are all ways to stimulate Serotonin production. All of these are also stimulate natural pain killers called, 'endorphins.'"

I knew (and still know) little about serotonin, so, I didn't know it was possible to get too much. I'll try to avoid that.

Personally, I am scarcely at all inclined to try to increase serotonin in any way besides natural ways, such as food that contains serotonin or which causes your body to naturally produce serotonin. Except I am willing to take Vitamin D supplements rather than getting Vitamin D via the sun.

This article about Vitamin D mentions that Vitamin D can help increase the production of serotonin.


Addition, 5:46 PM EDT. I should add that I am wary of Vitamin D in supplement form, because I have read about the possibility of overdosing on Vitamin D in supplement form.

Also, I could be wrong, but I'm getting the impression from what I'm reading on the web that Serotonin Syndrome might usually be associated with pharmaceutical medications which tamper with your serotonin levels.

The only medication I ever take is an occasional Advil (ibuprofen) painkiller (and I even try to avoid that). So, I could be wrong, but, I suspect I'm not at much risk of Serotonin Syndrome.

But, since use of pharmaceutical medications is worryingly widespread, I guess a lot of people might be at risk?


On the Wikipedia page about Serotonin Syndrome, the Causes section only contains one thing I sometimes eat in very small amounts - nutmeg. I put it in pumpkin pie and sometimes my mashed potatoes.

End of additions.)


From what I read, it sounds like adenosine has a lot to do with sleep.

Adenosine in sleep and wakefulness.
April 1999 from ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

"The inhibitory neuromodulator, adenosine, is a promising candidate for a sleep-inducing factor: its concentration is higher during wakefulness than during sleep, it accumulates in the brain during prolonged wakefulness, and local perfusions as well as systemic administration of adenosine and its agonists induce sleep and decrease wakefulness."

[...]

"When the activity of the wakefulness-active cells decreases sufficiently sleep is initiated. During sleep the extracellular adenosine concentrations decrease, and thus the inhibition of the wakefulness-active cells also decreases allowing the initiation of a new wakefulness period."

Over the years, I haven't carefully logged my headaches and their circumstances, but, I sometimes have had the impression that I tend to get headaches more often when I get tired, and that if I can manage to go to sleep despite them, my headaches tend to go away. (Though sometimes they came back within maybe a few hours after waking - but before, perhaps that had to do with my poor sleep quality from my electric blanket and perhaps also from caffeine.)

So, if adenosine contributes to migraines, and sleeping reduces adenosine, I guess that maybe might explain why sleeping sometimes seems to help my headaches?


And, if I understand correctly from this aforementioned article from Smithsonian Magazine, caffeine fits into (and blocks) adenosine receptors, and leads to there being a lot of unused adenosine floating around in your brain.

Quote:

"and all the surplus adenosine floating around in the brain cues the adrenal glands to secrete adrenaline, another stimulant."

So, who knows, maybe excessive caffeine actually did give me a bit of adrenal fatigue for a while. (And stress made it worse, but above all, I think the worst thing for me was the poor sleep quality which I believe primarily resulted somehow from my electric blanket.)


And the same article says caffeine blocking your adenosine receptors causes your brain to grow more adenosine receptors. Which is fortunately supposed to be reversible.

Quote:

"To kick the thing, you only need to get through about 7-12 days of symptoms without drinking any caffeine. During that period, your brain will naturally decrease the number of adenosine receptors on each cell, responding to the sudden lack of caffeine ingestion. If you can make it that long without a cup of joe or a spot of tea, the levels of adenosine receptors in your brain reset to their baseline levels, and your addiction will be broken."

I do believe it might take longer than that for some people, judging by what I've read by some people on the web. And a woman I know who gave up caffeine said it took months to feel normal again. (Meanwhile, a guy I know who gave up caffeine said he had no withdrawal symptoms whatsoever. But that's the guy who almost always seems to do amazingly well with amounts of sleep that would have been totally insufficient for me.)


I wonder if maybe a lot of the ideas on the CaffeineAndMigraine.com site actually are right?

If I understand that site correctly, the basic theory is that, since caffeine increases people's sensitivity to adenosine, caffeine thereby makes people more headache-prone or migraine-prone. (Sorry if I got that, or anything else, wrong somehow.)

I don't agree with absolutely everything that was on the CaffeineAndMigraine.com site, but, I sure hope some scientists are investigating those ideas, since, from my layperson's perspective, I find many of them quite interesting and plausible-seeming.


Addition, Sept. 27, 2016, 3:54 AM EDT. Had another very good day, though I didn't get much done - probably the most productive thing I did was update this blog post.

Lots of energy until I got rather tired around maybe 1:30 AM. Around maybe 3 AM, I started to feel almost on the verge of a headache, but, that feeling keeps fluctuating, so hopefully I'll avoid an actual headache. I suspect if I went to sleep around when I started feeling tired, I might have avoided that entirely. Probably ought to go to sleep soon.

Didn't clean my room more at all yet. And I still didn't do anything more with XSLT. I might be so stuck I might have to resort to posting questions on the internet. But, I'm probably first going to try reading things like the aforementioned XQuery 1.0 and XPath 2.0 Formal Semantics (Second Edition) and related pages. But not right now.


Addition, Sept. 28, 2016, 12:30 AM EDT. On Sept. 27th, slept between around 5:20 AM to 1:46 PM. I briefly woke up with a stuffy nose, though only on the left side. Went back to sleep and it was gone by the time I woke up. I think I forgot to mention that my jaw aches returned a bit on Sept. 26th and possibly other days, and I think I have that slightly now too, but it hasn't been bothering me very much.

No headaches so far. Have felt a bit tired, premenstrual, and increasingly spacy the longer I'm awake. But still lots more energy than before quitting my electric blanket. Also haven't been craving caffeine.

Today, I took five Nature Made Vitamin D3 2000 IU and two Nature Made magnesium oxide at the same time, then ate a bit of kale (for Vitamin K). Instead of just getting jittery, I first got more tired, then a bit jittery and more alert, but not as strongly jittery as the times when I took Vitamin D without much magnesium at about the same time. My mood has varied between anxious and good, but some of what I was feeling might have just been from caffeine withdrawal. Next time I take that much Vitamin D, I'll take 3 magnesiums.


Remembered I have a SitePoint Premium membership that will expire in December, so I spent a lot of time on there today, and also spent some time reading Clevnet books.

Definitely haven't had a difficult time concentrating today, even while jittery or spacy.


Addition, Sept. 29, 2016, 2:22 AM EDT. Slept between around 5:30 AM and 12:54 PM. It seemed like I had a sort of difficult time falling asleep, so maybe I should have taken yet another magnesium.

But, slept well enough, with better dreams than in the past. No headaches. I felt like I might be close to a headache for a few minutes sometime in the afternoon, but the feeling passed surprisingly quickly. Slight jaw aches.

And, a typical symptom (for me) of PMS - vague and unpainful lower abdomen sensations I call "preliminary cramps". (It's definitely not from bellydancing, because I still have scarcely even tried that yet.)


Still lots of physical energy, and I haven't felt foggy-minded, out of it, or very spacy, but for most of my day have felt vaguely tired (though not quite able to fall asleep), which could be just PMS or caffeine withdrawal, or both.

Also, it seems like I might need more Vitamin C, since my lower left gum sore spot has been coming back a little. (Even before quitting caffeine, that has seemed typical for me when having PMS and the unpleasantness that follows PMS.)

Hopefully my tiredness, etc. will improve a lot after my impending time of the month is over.

I wonder why PMS (and what follows) is so debilitating, and if sufficient Vitamin D might really make it less bad. Perhaps Vitamin D already is helping.


It's still much easier to get things done than it used to be before quitting my electric blanket. And I feel like I have a lot more time to get things done, since now my energy lasts longer, and it doesn't fluctuate as much.

In the past, I had the easiest time getting things done soon after waking, and soon after tea. After my tea wore off, I usually continued with whatever I was working on anyway without having more tea, but it was noticeably more difficult. And anytime I got a headache, I was pretty much useless.

It's really nice not having to deal with all the ups and downs from caffeine. And it's so comforting to know that even if I do get a headache, it might not be very bad, judging by the last headache I got days ago.


Despite today being better than possibly most days for almost the past 2 years before quitting my electric blanket (and caffeine) - today was a day when I was well-suited to mindless cleaning, since I didn't really feel like studying anything today or coding. So, I made some progress cleaning my room.

The highlights of my day were watching part of a Thor movie on TV, and Impractical Jokers.


Addition, Sept. 29, 2016, 5:10 AM EDT. Sometime after writing the previous addition, I ate some roasted walnuts - still one of the best-tasting things I've ever eaten in my life, which sometimes seem to have an interesting effect on me - I sometimes get sleepy after eating them, which I believe might have to do with the melatonin walnuts are reputed to contain.

Been getting quite tired, but, the reminder of melatonin gave me the idea of doing a Google search for "melatonin adenosine" (without quotes), just to see how those two things might relate to each other. So, I've been staying awake to read.

I found this page very interesting:

New Details About How Melatonin Triggers Sleep
Oct. 14, 2015 from HuffingtonPost.com

Quotes:

"They first exposed both the normal zebrafish larvae and the genetically-mutated zebrafish larvae to a regular pattern of day and night--14 hours of light and 10 hours of darkness. This established the larvae with circadian clocks that operated in sync with the light and darkness. Then they moved both types of fish larvae to an environment of complete darkness. The fish that produced melatonin naturally maintained their normal circadian cycle of sleep and wakefulness, even in the absence of routine light exposure.

But the genetically-mutated zebrafish, which were incapable of producing any melatonin, lost all circadian pattern or rhythmicity to their sleep. Without melatonin, the fish larvae could not maintain circadian cycles of sleep and wakefulness. This was a surprise to researchers, and strongly suggests that melatonin is not just useful and helpful to circadian sleep-wake cycles, but essential to them."

[...]

"Researchers gave both normal zebrafish larvae and the melatonin-deficient larvae doses of a drug that stimulated adenosine. The two groups of fish reacted in very different ways. The adenosine had no effect on the normal zebrafish larvae. But among the melatonin-deficient fish larvae, researchers observed significant changes to their sleep. The genetically-mutated fish larvae began sleeping normally, in patterns like the fish that were able to produce melatonin.

This phase of their experiment suggests that one function of melatonin may be to help trigger the adenosine build up in the brain that in turn leads to feeling the need for sleep.

These findings also suggest that melatonin may be a bridge between the two powerful systems that govern sleep: the circadian system and the homeostatic sleep system. We know these two systems both exert influence over sleep, and together create our basic 24-hour cycle of a long, consolidated period of sleep followed by an extended period of wakefulness. But science has yet to establish or uncover a direct, concrete link between these two systems. This research offers a lot of new detail about how melatonin actually may work on behalf of sleep, as well as the first evidence of a direct connection between our two sleep systems."


Also found this other page which explained the "homestatic sleep system" in a bit more detail:

The Science Behind Why We Sleep
Oct. 24, 2013 from HubPages.com

Quote:

"The homeostatic sleep drive process regulates the drive to sleep based on the amount of time we're awake and how much energy we're expending. The chemical adenosine binds to adenosine receptors during waking hours. The more you do and the longer you're awake, the more adenosine you accumulate, making you feel tired. It's your body's way of saying you've done enough, and it's time to quit. While you sleep, this chemical is broken down and adenosine levels decrease. Therefore, scientists feel that adenosine is the way the body keeps track of how much sleep you've gotten, and how much sleep you need. If you don't get enough sleep, the adenosine in your body is still remaining when you wake up, making you feel groggy. The next night you may sleep longer to rid your body of the extra accumulation of adenosine."

I feel a bit silly for not having known already about the "homeostatic sleep system". But, I guess I just have been so preoccupied with things other than my severe sleep issues, and so convinced they're probably incurable, that I just never read in sufficient detail about sleep to stumble across (or notice) that term before.


I wonder if I'm similar to those abovementioned abnormal melatonin-deficient zebrafish. Except I don't think my body is totally incapable of generating melatonin, since I do tend to get more alert in response to light and more drowsy in response to darkness or dim light - just not enough to be able to reliably make myself go to sleep just by turning the lights off. So, I'm definitely not exactly like those zebrafish.

But in any case, maybe unwittingly tampering with my adenosine and adenosine receptors by consuming caffeine might have caused even more chaos in my sleep patterns than my messed up circadian rhythms alone made me prone to.

But I don't really know exactly what causes my sleep issues or if it's anything to do with being melatonin-deficient, so, I'm just speculating/thinking aloud here.


Definitely glad I'm no longer accidentally tampering with my adenosine via caffeine.

I sure hope eating foods with lots of melatonin can't mess me up somehow, because walnuts are my favorite nut. Not that I eat them constantly - they're too expensive for me to do that, and besides, I don't have to eat a large amount of them to satisfy me (or for them to possibly make me sleepy).

I tend to avoid eating them until I'm about ready to go to sleep, though if I recall correctly, they don't seem to make me tired when I'm well-rested. And they definitely don't seem to make it impossible for me to resist going to sleep, though perhaps they would if I was absolutely exhausted before eating them.

And neither do dried sour/tart cherries, which I read have a lot more melatonin than walnuts. But I almost wish they had less melatonin, so I'd feel more comfortable eating them more often.


Addition, Sept. 29, 2016, 5:55 PM EDT. Slept between around 6:30 AM and 1:56 PM. No headaches, and I feel like I'm a lot more energetic and alert than yesterday. Might have slept better today. Maybe I didn't sleep as well the other day because I still had some magnesium deficiency from the Vitamin D I took the other day.

Around maybe 11:30 PM on Sept. 28 and 6 AM on Sept. 29th, took 2 Nature Made magnesium citrates (a total of 4), partly because my jaw aches started to get worse soon before I went to sleep. And now I'm out of magnesium citrate, so, I'm going to be using only Nature Made magnesium oxide from now on, unless/until I try some other kinds of magnesium.

Definitely not eager to try to take Vitamin D daily, because even just one makes me feel jittery. But, if I understand correctly, Vitamin D accumulates in your system rather than passing through it quickly. (This page says "Vitamin D accumulates in fat tissues where it is stored for a few months.") So, I don't think I need to take it daily.

Haven't accomplished much yet today, but, I guess I'll just try to finish cleaning my room. Then, my cat will be able to visit me again.


Addition, Sept. 30, 2016, 12:59 AM EDT. Still not tired at all yet! No headaches, either. Made a lot of progress cleaning my room. It was almost like an unwinnable game of real-life Sokoban that has dragged on for years. Except now, I've almost won. :-)

I'm basically a hoarder, so, I have lots of stuff (or junk) in lots of boxes. (I should probably sell at least some of it.)

As of today, most of the boxes are now in good out of the way positions. About all that remains is for me to sort various loose junk, formerly plastic-bagged junk, and clothes into various zippable pillow protectors. Then, I'll toss those newly-filled bags in the newly-uncluttered corner.


One of the best things I did was box up a bunch of books to make room on a shelf so I could have another place to set things down, so hopefully now my standing desk won't acquire as much junk anymore.

I was quite pleased to find my 3.5mm to RCA cord which lets me plug my laptop's audio into my stereo. So, now I can listen to Clevnet audio books while I clean.

Perhaps I'll be done cleaning in another day or two.


Additions, Sept. 30, 2016, 7:12 AM/7:52 AM EDT. Started getting tired around maybe 2:15 AM, but stayed up anyway. Didn't do any more cleaning, just browsed the web.

Anyway, I was just reflecting on how it was not only unfortunate but possibly also fortunate that over the past almost 2 years, I mysteriously (until I recently figured out why) got increasingly fatigued, primarily because of starting to use an electric blanket in Nov. 2014, and accidentally increasing my caffeine dosage since Feb. 2016 because my new tea mug was larger than I knew.

If I hadn't resumed using an electric blanket (I also had used one years before that until it broke, but I forgot what years), nor accidentally increased my caffeine dosage, then, it's possible that I might have gotten my life together a lot more in 2015-2016, because I would have had a lot more energy to do it. Though I would likely have still been plagued by caffeine-related symptoms such as headaches, and ups and downs instead of a far more pleasant steady amount of energy, since I probably never would have had sufficient reason to quit caffeine.

But overall, perhaps that might have been a quite good outcome, especially if I somehow succeeded in figuring out how to make an adequate living.

But would it have really been the best outcome? I'm not so sure, because in all the downtime I had, I learned a lot, and came up with some pretty good ideas which I might never have thought of if I had been overly busy with trying to make a living, which very easily could have been a thoroughly time-wasting, hamster-wheel-like pursuit, and I'm not at all sure I ever would have succeeded or thrived.

I don't know if I ever will anyway, but, I feel far better-equipped to do so now than I did back in Nov. 2014. These last 2 years didn't go totally to waste, since I was far from totally stifled in all that time - otherwise I would have tried to do more about my fatigue much sooner. But my decline had been (usually) so subtle and gradual that I originally misattributed it to getting older, or possibly getting diabetes or something.


Addition, Sept. 30, 2016, 8:49 PM EDT. Slept between around 9:15 AM to 2:13 PM. Was up for a little while, but felt like I needed to sleep more, so, I started trying to go back to sleep around 2:50 PM. It took a while, but I think I fell asleep maybe around 3:30 PM, and woke up at 6:08 PM. Feeling rested enough now. And, no headaches.

I wonder if my sleep patterns are becoming a bit more regular than before quitting caffeine. Someday, I need to make some more sleep charts.

My main goal for now is to keep cleaning my room and hopefully get it all done. The only problem is that I might need even more zippable pillow protectors. Which isn't insurmountable - if necessary, I can just toss the remaining junk back in the pile in the corner, similar to how it used to be, but somewhat more organized.

Or I could just use more boxes, which at least are sturdier and less annoying than plastic bags. But for clothes and other light objects like junk mail, I prefer zippable pillow protectors, since they hold more than the now mostly small boxes I have, and I don't have to hold them upright (or tape them shut) to keep things from falling out of them.


Additions, Oct. 1, 2016, 6:30 AM/6:43 AM EDT. Still lots of energy, and been awake all night. And I made some progress cleaning my room. So much progress I'm willing to post a picture. :-)

This is the nicest corner. I edited the brightness, contrast, saturation, and gamma in mtPaint because the original picture was so dark and didn't really look as nice as it actually looks. However, the below actually looks even nicer than it looks in the real world.


Larger Size

Original Picture without brightness, contrast, saturation, and gamma adjusted with mtPaint

Clearly, I should pursue a career in interior decorating. (Just kidding.)

The wide painting isn't by me, and I don't know who painted it. Astonishingly, it was only $2 - two dollars - from a local live auction!

The smaller, more colorful picture is a Thomas Kinkade print called The Garden of Prayer, and if I recall correctly, it also was just $2 - two dollars. Found it at a local thrift store.

I've only bought a few things like that in my entire life, since I usually didn't have much money, and I don't really have too much physical space for merely decorative things. Most of the others are in the second nicest corner of my room, which I forgot to take a picture of.

I guess most of my excessive stuff is books bought for usually extremely low prices (or given to me). Too many books and only 3 shelves, so most of the books are now in boxes.


It's definitely a lot nicer in here than it used to be. But I still need a lot more zippable pillow protectors to put the remainder of my unsorted clothes mountain inside. (I never took much interest in clothes, but some people just love giving me clothes.)

Unfortunately, my room is now even less cat-proof than it was. I just have too much junk in precarious stacks, since it turns out the only way I can keep this much stuff in my room without it being intolerable is to try to maximize my use of vertical space.

So, since I'm not yet ready to sell off a lot of stuff, and can't afford to move someplace where I'd have more space, I'm giving up for now on the idea of making it possible again for my cat to visit me in here.


Starting to get sleepy now. Perhaps it will take another day or so for me to finish cleaning, or to get so impatient that I'll just put the rest of the junk back in the other corner.


Additions, Oct. 1, 2016, 8:50/8:59 PM EDT. Slept between about maybe 9:45 AM and 3:25 PM. Still was tired, but had trouble falling asleep again until sometime after 4:16 PM, then slept until 6:05 PM. Also was a bit headachy at times, but it wasn't that bad and didn't last very long. I think I had a bit more energy before eating, but, have mostly just wanted to go back to sleep, which is probably from PMS.

So, I mostly haven't done anything with the junk mountain between my bed and door, even though I now have several more zippable pillow protectors. Maybe I'll just go back to sleep, since even with both my lamps on to make my room as bright as possible, I still feel tired.

I'm not too worried that this might be my old fatigue coming back, because this tiredness is a very typical PMS symptom for me. Also, I still feel better and more energetic than I did before quitting my electric blanket.


Additions, Oct. 2, 2016, 5:30 PM/5:46 PM EDT. Didn't sleep until sometime after 11:14 AM today, then slept until about 4:31 PM. Stayed up on Oct. 1 to watch TV with my family. Then I got a headache, but nonetheless returned to XSLT, which kept me awake even more than my headaches did.

Because of the headaches, that was probably my most difficult day since completely stopping caffeine, but I still think it's probably more due to PMS than caffeine withdrawal. But it wasn't that bad - surprisingly, despite my headaches, I made a lot of progress with XSLT.

5 hours of sleep tends not to be enough for me, but, XSLT might keep me awake again. Also, I still need to clean up all this junk in my room.

No headache yet, and also not feeling that tired yet.

Addition, 5:49 PM. On second thought, I probably could go back to sleep at any time. But making progress with something as difficult as XSLT is exciting.


Addition, Oct. 3, 2016, 3:09 AM EDT. It was impossible to continue to ignore my room's chaos, so, I stayed up and cleaned my room some more, since I wasn't tired enough for my tiredness to stop me.

There were numerous other times in all these years when my room was tolerable, but it was never this well-organized before. Recovering from fatigue certainly hasn't "cured" my hoarding (which I don't consider much of a problem anyway, compared to my lack of space and lack of enough money).

But at least my hoarding is much more manageable now that I have the energy and inclination to deal with all this junk.

No headaches so far, but, too tired to continue cleaning, so, maybe I'll get it done in another day or two.


Addition, Oct. 4, 2016, 2:51 AM EDT. On Oct. 3rd, slept from sometime after 9:51 AM to 3:24 PM. Was woken up by cramps, and my time of the month starting. Was feeling bad at first (and later after my first Advil wore off), but have been mostly fine thanks to Advil.

Been varying between a bit tired and very tired, but, at times, I have been plenty more energetic than I'd expect to feel at my time of the month - especially the 1st day, which reliably tends to be worse than the other days. And, no headaches.

But, I mostly haven't felt like doing much of anything besides watching TV and reading books, or going back to sleep. Probably should have gone back to sleep, but there were too many things I wanted to read and watch.

This wasn't as difficult as my headachy day, but at times it was the closest I've felt to being back to my old fatigue. Which is quite typical for my time of the month, so, I doubt it's my old fatigue coming back, and I look forward to probably recovering soon.


Additions, Oct. 5, 2016, 12:14 AM/12:20 AM EDT. On Oct. 4th, slept from sometime after 10:37 AM to around 6:32 PM. Still no headaches, and a lot of my energy came back. Took an Advil to deal with cramps, so now I'm pain-free.

But, I'm still not in the mood to do much of anything, and going back to sleep doesn't seem out of the question either. Read a bit, wrote a bit, but didn't accomplish much at all today.

I took 2 Nature Made magnesium oxides before sleep, which I think helped me sleep longer and better than the other days (when I neglected to take any magnesium, and didn't have walnuts either).

Definitely feeling better than yesterday, but, as usual, I'll be very glad when this monthly nonsense is over.


Addition, Oct. 5, 2016, 9:49 AM EDT. Slept a bit sometime between around 2 AM and 4:17 AM, and probably could have slept longer, but I needed another Advil for my cramps.

Even such a short nap helped with my tiredness and mood. Still have only felt like reading rather than putting away my small mountain of still-disorganized junk, but I'm sure I'll get around to that eventually.

Maybe I'll nap some more. During my time of the month, I sometimes wish I could just sleep for about 5 days straight until it's over. :-)


This is the first period I've had since quitting my electric blanket. I was hoping it wouldn't be so tiring, but, it still is even despite recovering so much from my fatigue.

I'm so glad I don't have a job and/or school, because those would definitely be harder to do now, even if I didn't also have severe sleep issues.

Hopefully someday the USA will have menstrual leave in some sensibly-implemented form. Or better yet, hopefully someday people won't need to have jobs or money to be able to have pleasant lives. Maybe technology will make that possible someday. A Star Trek-style replicator would be so wonderful and could end world poverty, hunger, etc.


Addition, Oct. 5, 2016, 11:41 PM EDT. Slept between sometime after 2:50 PM and 11:10 PM. Woke up briefly sometime during the day - was achy and my left nostril so clogged that I felt like I had a cold. Don't know if that could be caffeine withdrawal or really a cold, but in any case, I took 2 Vitamin C's in case that might help, and went back to sleep. The aches and congestion are gone now.

Still feeling rather tired after all that sleep. I sure hope this all goes away when my period is over, since I am getting afraid of my old fatigue coming back. But for now I'll just assume that my period is to blame. And maybe my caffeine withdrawal is worsening? I don't think I've had any since Sept. 22nd. But I haven't craved caffeine ever since the last time I mentioned not craving it (early Sept. 28).

Addition, Oct. 6, 2016, 12:11 AM EDT. I also have that very bothersome foggy-minded, out of it feeling I haven't had in a while. But, I think I might have the energy to finish cleaning my room today. Not having to climb over a small junk mountain to get in and out of my room (or bed), and having an easier time finding stuff, will definitely reduce some stress, save some time, and improve my life.

Addition, 12:54 AM EDT. Definitely not as tired as my old fatigue. But maybe sleeping even longer would be a good idea. Still not really in the mood to clean.


Addition, 3:43 AM EDT. Feeling much better after eating. Sometimes I seem to get more tired after eating, but this time, I got less tired. Maybe I just need to eat better. Probably, because when I get too tired, I sometimes get pretty lazy about preparing food. For example, I think all I ate yesterday was some cereal, goldfish crackers, walnuts, and my usual vitamins.

But, fortunately, today, I remembered we have corn on the cob, which is surprisingly quick and easy to make using the microwave. To make it, all I had to do was peel off the husk, wash the corn, put it on a plate, microwave it for a minute or so, put butter and salt on it, then eat it. Quite good.


Addition, Oct. 6, 2016, 1:17 PM EDT. It took all the rest of the night and morning, but, finally, my room is sufficiently well-organized for now (in my opinion). It's more practical now because things are mostly out of the way and theoretically more easily located than before, but it's still messy and boxy enough to feel like home. I'm surrounded by cardboard skyscrapers - and, loving it. :-)

Ran out of both zippable pillow protectors and patience, and kept losing already-labeled zippered pillow protectors in the mess, so I mostly stopped trying to sort things and just divided the junk into bags of clothes and non-clothes. Still didn't put all that stuff in the corner yet, but now I can actually walk between my door and bed.

And I can once again sit (and spin) in my office chair, and even travel a bit around my room in it.

Now, with that pretty much done, I can return to more important things, like bellydancing and XSLT.

Very sleepy now (but not until I started writing this). But no headaches (though a few hours ago I felt like I got close), and my aforementioned foggy-minded, out-of-it feeling went away a long time ago.


Additions, Oct. 7, 2016, 3:14 PM/3:18 PM/3:39 PM EDT. On Oct. 6th, slept sometime between 2:19 PM and 7:54 PM. Meant to go back to sleep, but ended up staying awake. Didn't do much, just browsed the web. Felt fine, except for some slight jaw aches.

Today, slept sometime between 6:10 AM and 1:12 PM. Other than an odd cramp in my neck, I feel fine. (Except a bit tired because dog barking woke me up earlier than I naturally would have woken up.) And my time of the month is almost over.

I think I'm convinced now that probably my fatigue is resolved (or well on its way to resolving), and not likely to recur (except slightly around my time of the month). And I'm not sure how much caffeine withdrawal is affecting me anymore. So, I don't know if I have much more to add to this blog post. I guess I might still add to it a bit, but probably less frequently.

I'm going to just keep taking it easy and avoiding unnecessary stress.


Additions, Oct. 8, 2016, 8:10 AM/9:15 AM EDT. Slept sometime between 6:19 PM and 12:27 AM. Definitely feeling back to normal now. Been wide awake and energetic all night (and morning, so far). And I took some more pictures of my room.

Not much else to say, I guess. My next top goal is to finish the XSLT project I've been working on from time to time since August. That will help pave the way for many of my other projects.


Addition, Oct. 11, 2016, 4:40 PM EDT. On Oct. 8th-9th, slept sometime between 6:56 PM and 1:53 AM. On Oct. 9th, slept sometime between 7:30 AM and 10:53 AM. On Oct. 10th, slept sometime between 2:52 AM and 4:17 AM, and 9:01 AM and 10:35 AM. On Oct. 10th-11th, slept sometime between 9:09 PM and 4:15 AM. And on Oct. 11th (today), just took a nap sometime between 2:04 PM and 3:20 PM.

I often haven't been sleeping as well as I should, but, I've still been doing much better compared to before quitting my electric blanket (and compared to my time of the month). Even when insufficiently rested, I have usually had much more energy than before.

Maybe Nature Made magnesium citrate (which I ran out of) actually does work better for me than Nature Made magnesium oxide to make me more relaxed and able to sleep better. Or maybe I just need more magnesium than I used to for some reason.

Have avoided headaches, though at times I got close. I've sometimes been having the problem of sometimes repeatedly waking up very thirsty.

But, I think I have a better appetite now that I quit caffeine, even though I still need to eat better. And it's also helpful that, thanks to cleaning and rearranging my room, I can once again run my box fan to block noise while I sleep.


I think I better keep avoiding stressful things for a while, though. So, that means my websites are likely to be even more boring than usual for a while, because even posting blog posts can be too stressful for me.

And I've still mostly been avoiding my public email and mostly haven't been maintaining my forums. So, sorry if anyone wrote and is awaiting a reply or something.

I just still don't feel up to dealing with a lot of stuff, other than my software projects.


Addition, Oct. 12, 2016, 6:15 AM EDT. Got some more Nature Made magnesium citrate, and slept sometime between 7:30 PM and 2:51 AM. I woke up thirsty a few times again, but, slept better, and am definitely feeling better now. So, guess I'll just keep taking magnesium citrate.

Still going to keep avoiding stress for a while. But fortunately for my software projects - though I often find programming difficult (especially XSLT), I don't find it stressful. Compared to stressful things I'd rather avoid, programming is relaxing. It's also a lot more satisfying than leisure activities that accomplish little beyond momentarily amusing me, and which don't give me so much hope for a better future.


Addition, Oct. 13, 2016, 5:28 PM EDT. On Oct. 12th-13th, slept sometime between 9:05 PM and 2:49 AM. On Oct. 13th, slept sometime between 4:57 AM and 8:54 AM.

Been sort of tired (but still not as bad as before quitting my electric blanket). But, I think maybe that's largely related to my poor eating habits - habitually neglecting to eat enough (especially if nothing available appeals much to me), and usually avoiding going to the trouble to prepare any food that is too time-consuming or elaborate to make.

I think maybe caffeine used to veil the true impact of my poor eating habits, by making me artificially feel energetic despite eating poorly. So, now that I'm not having any caffeine, now I'm more easily able to observe fluctuations in my energy levels from eating or not eating.

I think I was doing better before I ran out of goldfish crackers. Going to get more soon.

I sure wish I had a robot chef, but I'd want one which is free (as in freedom), libre, and open source.


Addition, Oct. 14, 2016, 4:29 PM EDT. Today, slept sometime between 2:25 AM and 8:16 AM. Felt a lot more energetic, but nonetheless went back to sleep from sometime between 10 AM to 4:08 PM. Still feeling like I could sleep longer, so maybe I will. Haven't eaten anything yet today.


Addition, Oct. 15, 2016, 10:58 PM EDT. Still no headaches, though I've sometimes gotten close. Yesterday, ended up staying awake since I got invited to a movie.

Yesterday, I didn't constantly feel bad, but I had moments where I felt nauseated, and I was often tired and sometimes had that foggy-minded, out of it feeling again. Sometimes I wondered if I was fighting off a cold, or if I still had caffeine withdrawal, or something else. Or just poor nutrition in general.

I think the best I felt yesterday was a little while after I first woke up around 8:16 AM, after I drank some water.

I keep waking up very thirsty and sometimes with a slightly stuffy nose. And it sometimes seems like I need extra Vitamin C later in my day to make the sore spot on my lower left gum go away.


Today has been much better, even though I only slept sometime between 8:51 AM and 2:07 PM, and have been sort of tired since maybe around 6 PM. I think eating better yesterday resulted in me waking up feeling much better today.

I think I also do better when I don't skip Teeccino. I was running low on honey for a while, so I drank Teeccino less frequently to try to avoid running out of honey. But today I got more honey, so I was able to return to my daily routine of having one mug of pumpkin spice Teeccino soon after I wake up.

And, now I have goldfish crackers again. I find it comforting to have them around, since, unlike many foods, they're not something I have to struggle to make myself eat. I actually have been craving them and their saltiness. So, maybe now I'll sleep better as a result of not going for so many hours eating hardly anything.


An annoying symptom I hadn't mentioned before, but have had off and on for maybe months (and maybe even since before quitting caffeine) is feeling too often like I have to urinate. But it's not a constant symptom - it comes and goes, and I think it tends to get worse when my nutrition is poor. It also seems to sometimes get worse toward the end of my day.

Quite possibly one reason I wake up so thirsty is because of not drinking that much before sleep because I don't want my sleep interfered with by needing to go to the bathroom. But then my sleep gets interfered with by thirst. :-/


I wonder if maybe I have some kind of possibly adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance issues. Here's another interesting article on that topic.

So, maybe that's part of why I crave salty goldfish crackers so much and why I seem to feel significantly better after eating them.


Haven't gotten very much done lately. Did a little bit with my XSLT project. But mostly I've been lost in Clevnet books or Sitepoint Premium, or random web browsing.

I sure hope I'm really recovering from my fatigue. Maybe sometime I should really start bellydancing or otherwise exercising.


Addition, Oct. 16, 2016, 9:54 AM EDT. Slept sometime between 12:39 AM and 8:11 AM. I didn't even have magnesium or walnuts before sleep, but somehow felt sleepier and like I was going to sleep better, and I think I did.

It seems like I have more pleasant dreams when I sleep better. I almost never have flying dreams, and when I do, they're usually scary (and not really flying), like a car flying off a cliff. But today, I dreamed I and a few classmates were flying by holding onto ropes (or sitting in seats hanging by ropes) hanging off of a giant bird. I was a bit scared the first time, but the second time, I was totally calm and just enjoyed the beautiful scenery far below (castles and greenery), even though I had no way to control where the bird was taking us. But it was somehow a perfectly safe and reliable method of transportation for our school.

I had a very gentle landing at the edge of a forest, and it might not even have been necessary for me to grab onto a tree branch to make sure it was a gentle landing. Then, to my nastier classmates' amusement, I accidentally stepped in a massive pile of dinosaur droppings, and consequently had to go clothes shopping, but fortunately, there was a Goodwill thrift store nearby and I had enough money to buy whatever I wanted.

I also had another nice dream today before that, but don't want to go into detail. Nice but not perfect, similar to the other dream.

I still woke up thirsty at times, and also either too hot or too cold. But so far I feel pretty good.


Addition, Oct. 17, 2016, 1:35 AM EDT. Had a mostly quite good day. I think I started to get a bit tired around maybe 4:50 PM when I was watching a documentary on Netflix, and increasingly tired after that. But, there were days when I got tired much sooner than about 9 hours after waking, so this is definitely progress. I think those 9 hours might have been the most energetic I've been since my time of the month ended.

I think quite possibly I really have had the problem of adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance, since I felt (and slept) so much better so soon after resuming eating my current favorite salty snack, goldfish crackers. And also haven't had the frequent urination problem.

Still, didn't get much done - mostly just talked with relatives and watched TV together, and cooked a shared meal of microwaved mashed potatoes, since I had the energy to do so. And, in the evening, had to fix a glitch with my websites, which kept me awake a bit longer than I otherwise might have stayed awake.

I have a bit of a headache now, perhaps partly because of staying up. And maybe partly because I might need to drink more liquids in general. And perhaps partly because I might actually be getting an actual cold. Not sure, though.

But today, my nose got slightly stuffy while I was watching TV, which was unusual since lately I usually have only had that problem at times when sleeping. So, I took 2 more Vitamin C's a few hours ago in case that might help.

I guess I better keep taking it easy and avoiding stress.


Additions, Oct. 17, 2016, 10:57 AM/11:12 AM EDT. Slept sometime between 3:26 AM and 8:30 AM. Wanted to sleep longer, but, have been vaguely headachy, with a slightly stuffy nose, and woke up thirsty again, so I took 2 more Vitamin C's and tried to go back to sleep, but couldn't.

I think this probably is a cold rather than merely caffeine withdrawal symptoms. So, I guess I probably ought to go back to sleep whenever I feel capable of doing so. Interestingly, I feel like I have quite a bit of energy, despite this possible cold. Energy-wise, at the moment, I'm definitely still doing better than I was before quitting my electric blanket.

But I feel out of sorts, my gum's sore spot has been acting up a lot lately (which I suspect means I need even more Vitamin C), and the worst part is the headache, though I don't think it's as bad as a lot of my former headaches.


To help deal with my possible adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance, I'm going to try an idea suggested in this article, even though I'm not sure if I have a "severe" case of adrenal fatigue. Quote:

"In severe cases, I have recommended adrenal fatigue patients keep a glass of salted water (salted to taste) by their bedsides to drink first thing in the morning before rising. Doing this appears to greatly improve their ability to function in the morning."

For all this time, I've been drinking plain water when I wake up during my "night" or in my "morning", even though for my entire life, I usually found plain water to be one of the least appealing of all beverages (though it's more tolerable if it's ice cold), and I doubt I ever even got close to drinking 8 glasses of water a day. (But this NYTimes.com article says the idea that people need to drink 8 glasses of water a day is a myth. So, in that case, it's likely good I never made much of an effort to drink so much.)

Never thought of adding a little salt to my water, but I definitely like that idea and will try that soon.


Addition, Oct. 17, 2016, 4:35 PM EDT. Still haven't gone back to sleep yet. My headache has decreased, and I think eating yogurt and a tomato (not mixed together :-) ) particularly helped. My slightly stuffy nose also has decreased (except I think now my nose is running a bit, which is preferable in my opinion), and my gum's sore spot has gone away again, so probably the extra Vitamin C is helping.

I added a couple small raw garlic cloves to the mashed potatoes I'm eating as I write this, since someone I know has recounted various stories of garlic being amazingly good for quickly getting rid of various infections and illnesses, and I've also read various good things about garlic on the web, like this article.

I should probably start eating garlic more often. I just need to more frequently eat food which garlic tastes good in, since it would be pretty unpleasant to eat by itself. Pasta would be especially good.

Ooh, that reminds me of this idea I forgot about - Oatmeal: A Decent Substitute for Pasta.


Addition, Oct. 18, 2016, 2:22 AM EDT. Slept sometime between 6:40 PM and maybe 1 AM, though didn't give up on trying to go back to sleep until 1:38 AM.

Slept better this time. Didn't wake up as thirsty, and no stuffy or runny nose. I do think slightly salted water is better for me. For me, it only takes a tiny amount of salt to change the taste. I'm not sure exactly how much water I had in my glass, but, I put in only 2/64ths of a teaspoon of salt, then ended up diluting it with slightly more water to make it less salty.

Yesterday, feasted upon another great salty snack - croutons. I meant to eat them on a salad, but I ended up eating a bunch of them straight out of the bag. They always were one of my favorite parts of a salad. Rather than embellishing a salad with croutons, I probably ought to embellish my croutons with salad.

Feeling pretty good now, but I'm going to keep taking extra Vitamin C and try to work some more raw garlic cloves into my food, and won't hesitate to go back to sleep if I feel like it.


Addition, Oct. 18, 2016, 1:43 PM EDT. I felt pretty energetic, but didn't do much last night besides look at Clevnet books. I actually didn't even eat anything - just had two 500 mg Vitamin C's and one 500mg Ovega 3. I'm probably going to quit taking Ovega 3 if the price doesn't go back down, and already wanted to quit taking Ovega 3 because it contains carrageenan.

Just not sure yet what other Omega 3 I should switch to. I wish salmon (which is high in Omega 3) was a fruit or vegetable. I miss salmon and other fish so much sometimes. Even though I wish I could be vegetarian, I'd be extremely tempted to eat fish if I wasn't afraid of mercury and other pollution.


Slept sometime between 9:18 AM and 12:36 PM, but felt like I slept much longer. Didn't wake up as thirsty as I frequently had been, and I just overall feel much better than I did during the bad parts of Oct. 17th. So far, I no longer feel like I have a cold.

I wonder if maybe my second-worst problem after my electric blanket was my possible adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance? I'm so glad I stumbled across that idea, since now I have more specific ways to try to make myself feel better than my former somewhat vague (though sensible enough) solution, "eat more often and more nutritiously". Ways such as eating salty food, drinking slightly salted water, and eating foods containing potassium. So far, that really seems to help me.

Maybe it would also be good for me to regularly take more than just two 500 mg Vitamin C's per day, and eat raw garlic cloves more frequently.


Addition, Oct. 19, 2016, 2:07 AM EDT. Finally started getting tired much later than I expected, around maybe 11 PM. Had a very good day. Didn't get much done - just read books and watched TV. But, if I reliably continue to feel fine, clear-minded, adequately rested, and unheadachy, it will probably be much easier for me to get things done in the future.


Addition, Oct. 20, 2016, 1:54 AM EDT. On Oct. 19th, slept sometime between 2:40 AM and 9:58 AM. I woke up a bunch of times, but, still wasn't as thirsty as I used to be. Had a lot of energy all day and didn't start getting tired until sometime after 12 AM.

I'm amazed at how much better I'm doing, since I looked up how long recovery from adrenal fatigue can take and it ranged from less than 6 months to 18 months - a year and a half.

But, I guess fixing my possibly adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance, and eating better in general, may have done wonders for my sleep quality. And/or, I fought off my mild possible cold.

At the moment, I don't feel like it's going to take 6 months for me to recover from adrenal fatigue, and/or whatever remains of my caffeine withdrawal. Still, I doubt it's a good idea to push myself too hard, so, I'm going to keep avoiding stressful things.


Additions, Oct. 21, 2016, 1:12 AM/1:19 AM/1:27 AM EDT. On Oct. 20th, slept sometime between 7:37 AM and 1:33 PM. Still felt a bit tired so wanted to go to back to sleep soon, so ate nothing and had only Ovega 3 and Vitamin C.

Mostly, Clevnet books kept me awake, so I didn't go back to sleep until sometime after 6:19 PM, then slept until about midnight. Woke up a bit thirsty with a slightly stuffy left nostril, which cleared up after drinking some unsalted water. (I recently was too lazy to prepare a glass of salted water.)

I don't think my stuffy nose is always a cold symptom, and I don't really feel like my possible cold is coming back. But, I guess I can't slack off too much anymore with managing my possible adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance (which until recently I didn't even realize would help me so much), and I should maybe try a bit harder to not neglect to eat.

I feel like I could maybe go back to sleep soon, though my energy is still tremendously better than before quitting my electric blanket. And overall lately, I've felt far more clear-minded, instead of foggy-minded and overwhelmed by stuff like XSLT. Even just thinking feels much easier now that I'm not so fatigued. But also, I'm probably just getting more used to XSLT.

Addition, 1:25 AM EDT. At the moment, judging by various typos, I am a bit absentminded. And I definitely feel like going back to sleep.


Additions, Oct. 21, 2016, 3:42 PM/3:58 PM EDT. Ended up staying up, and slept only briefly sometime between 11:56 AM and 1:43 PM. Was mostly reading Clevnet books again.

I didn't make up too well for my recently poor eating habits. I had my usual Ovega 3 and Vitamin C that I pretty consistently take in my "morning". But, I lazily actually only ate a bunch of goldfish crackers! And, at various times, drank water (mostly unsalted) or cow's milk. At least all that definitely seemed to give me more energy and made me more inclined to stay awake.

I now have some slightly salted water ready to drink. Since waking, I've still only been eating goldfish crackers so far. Meant to sleep longer than around one and a half hours, and felt more capable of going to sleep before eating, but now, I think I might stay awake for at least a little while.

I haven't taken Nature Made magnesium citrate since Oct. 17th, and my jaw aches seem to be coming back a bit now, so, I guess I ought to resume taking magnesium, especially since magnesium often seems to make me tired and seems to help my sleep quality. I guess most of the reason I've been neglecting it is because when I get tired, I get less inclined to do even simple things like taking vitamins, and I prefer to take magnesium toward the end of my day because it seems like it can make me tired.


So, life without caffeine is pretty different, I guess. Can't get away as much with my often poor eating habits anymore, since without artificial energy from caffeine, I can more easily perceive the effects of my overly frequent neglect to eat.

Things aren't entirely different, though - it seems caffeine is definitely not the only thing to blame for my disinterest in food. (But I already thought that.) And quitting caffeine also hasn't magically cured my possible Non-24-hour Sleep-Wake Disorder. (No surprise there.)

But it does seem like my headaches are now reduced, and I think the few I got were overall less bad than my former headaches. And I really like having more steady, consistent energy rather than a temporary high from caffeine, then a low partway through my day when the caffeine wears off.

And my good days are now much better than any of my days before quitting my electric blanket and caffeine, and the not-so-good days are also better. So, already (and especially since Sept. 10th/11th, the first night I slept without my electric blanket), it was definitely worth going to all this trouble to quit my electric blanket and caffeine.


Don't know if caffeine withdrawal is still affecting me, but I guess it's possible. But I think overall, most of my fluctuations are probably the result of my poor eating habits and sometimes still not doing enough to fix my possible adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance. (And probably my time of the month will give me trouble again, as it pretty much always has done.)

It's so nice to know that really good, untired days are possible for me when I take better care of myself. (And I don't even have to try very hard to achieve that. Even idly eating goldfish crackers makes a good difference for me, though of course that alone doesn't make for a perfect day.) And even when I'm not having one of those really good days, I still feel overall better than I did before quitting my electric blanket and caffeine.


Addition, Oct. 21, 2016, 9:55 PM EDT. Still didn't go back to sleep, again largely because of Clevnet books.

Had pumpkin spice Teeccino, and even felt like making a package of sweet and sour chicken, despite the fact that it wasn't microwaveable, and had to be cooked for 20 minutes in the oven.

Definitely have been sleepy and not at my best today, but, I still feel like I'm functioning amazingly well compared to the past. In the past, I never noticed food being so energizing to me (though even lately, sometimes it makes me tired, like now).

Previously, eating ordinary non-caffeinated food mainly only had effects on me like reducing hunger, making me feel better both physically and emotionally, sometimes easing headaches, and making it easier for me to sleep whether or not it actually made me tired soon after eating (and it sometimes did). Previously, only caffeine (whether coffee, tea, or chocolate) provided me an energy boost I found noticeable.

So, food sometimes actually making me feel more energized and awake (even if I start out tired) is an interesting and nice change. And I have the impression now that I'm probably going to sleep much better soon.

I wonder if fixing my possibly adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance possibly helps my body generate more melatonin. (Not in the mood to google for info right now.) At the moment, I have the kind of tiredness that I tend to get within about a half hour of eating some walnuts (which are reputed to contain a lot of melatonin). But I didn't eat any walnuts today, and maybe none since Oct. 11th. Didn't even have magnesium yet.

So, I guess I should probably go to sleep soon.


Additions, Oct. 22, 2016, 4:43/4:46 PM EDT. Stayed awake to read again, and slept sometime between 2:06 AM and 12:08 PM. I feel mostly OK, but still a bit tired and was a bit tempted to go back to sleep when I first woke up. Didn't get as thirsty as in the past, and slept OK, but was woken by thirst at various times. And before sleep, had the frequent urination problem, which has gone away now.

Not much else to say, I guess. I don't know if anything really notable will happen or if I'll make any interesting new (or new to me) discoveries worth writing about, so, I might add to this less frequently in the future.

I think now I'm probably on the road to recovery, as long as I keep taking care of my nutrition and my possibly adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance.


Addition, Oct. 27, 2016, 1:20 AM EDT. Nothing much has happened. Still have been woken up at various times by thirst, but overall have been doing fine, though on the days I woke up too early I felt a bit tired.

On Oct. 23rd, slept sometime between 6:45 AM and 3:21 PM, and only woke up that early because of some noise outside which I could hear because I left my box fan off.

On Oct. 24th, slept sometime between 4:13 AM and 1:25 PM, and again because I left my box fan off, I was woken up by our dog barking. That day and the next, I finally gave in and ate some chocolate hazelnut Piroulines someone gave me a few weeks ago because he didn't realize I was trying to avoid chocolate as well as tea and coffee. Only noticed a slight caffeine-like energizing effect which lasted maybe a couple hours, and also a bit of jitteriness. But I don't think eating them caused me any actual problems, which makes me glad, since I definitely don't want to give up chocolate for the rest of my life.

On Oct. 25th, slept sometime between 7:07 AM and 1:57 PM. And on Oct. 26th, slept sometime between 4:54 AM and 11:14 AM, and 1:28 PM and 5:23 PM.

Mostly been continuing to read lots of Clevnet books, and sometimes have been messing with my XSLT project. I was surprised Clevnet had any XSLT books at all, but happily, there's one - the aforementioned XSLT for Dummies, which definitely helped me a lot.

Recently, I was very pleased to find that there's a generously large sample of XSLT 2.0 and XPath 2.0 Programmer's Reference - 279 pages (at least in my web browser) even when using the smallest font size. It looks like a really useful, wonderful book, and I hope Clevnet will acquire it.


In the evening on Oct. 26th, I finally made a real effort to try some bellydancing, with the assistance of a video from Clevnet, the aptly titled Learn Belly Dancing.

I got through about 42 minutes, then got distracted by some books. It's definitely more difficult than it looks, but, reassuringly, the instructor emphasized that a lot of those moves take a lot of practice to get right.

It was surprisingly tiring, but fun enough. It will probably be more fun when I get better at it, and also when I get some appropriate attire, and lose a little weight. Though, for someone who gets hardly any exercise, I still look pretty good.

I think the exercise put me in an overall better mood, and a few hours later, I feel more energetic than before. I even feel like I'm getting more ideas for my various projects, and more motivation to actually implement them. So, I'm definitely interested in continuing to study bellydancing.


Addition, Oct. 27, 2016, 6:15 PM EDT. Slept sometime between 7:21 AM and 2:42 PM. Was woken by thirst, and slightly stuffy nose. Forgot to mention before that I still have been sometimes having that slight congestion (usually only when I wake up), a bit of runniness, and also the same old jaw aches on the right side.

But, I feel energetic and overall good. Today, I made a pot of hard-boiled eggs (mostly so they wouldn't go to waste, since they were past their sell-by date), and two pumpkin pies, since we happened to have all the ingredients.

Soon, I'll be getting a physical copy of XSLT 2.0 and XPath 2.0 Programmer's Reference. Hopefully studying that will make it possible for me to complete my XSLT project, or to build it better than I would have without studying that book.


Addition, Oct. 28, 2016, 7:42 AM EDT. Didn't sleep yet, though I started getting a bit tired around 10 or 11 PM. Didn't bellydance since the last time I mentioned it. Slightly to my surprise, I didn't get achy after the Learn Belly Dancing video, even though I "felt the burn" at times from the exertion.

And, today I feel more flexible and even like it's a bit easier to navigate around some of the still-obstructed (or newly-obstructed) areas of my room.


Even though my weight isn't much of a problem, I recently read a lot of a book called Crack the Fat-Loss Code. I don't think I want to actually try all of the ideas suggested in that book, and think the first week of the plan (very low carbs) might be a particularly bad idea for me while I'm possibly still recovering from adrenal fatigue and caffeine withdrawal. But, I feel like I learned a lot from that book, and like I now have a better idea of how protein, fats, and carbohydrates affect one's metabolism.

Maybe I'll eat more protein (especially before exercise) to try to encourage my body to produce and maintain a bit more muscle, which (if I recall correctly) uses up more calories than other types of cells.

Rather than fiddling with my meal timing and portion sizes, I'd rather just exercise more.


Addition, Oct. 29, 2016, 1:18 AM EDT. On Oct. 28th, slept sometime between 7:55 AM and 2:43 PM, and 3:12 PM and 6:18 PM. Slept sort of poorly and was woken by thirst at various times.

Maybe I need to be really strict about taking all my vitamins - probably shouldn't have skipped magnesium and Nature Made Stress B.

I guess I feel energetic enough, but emotionally, this was at first a pretty bad, sad day, even though nothing happened that was bad enough to really justify such an emotional response. So, maybe it's just PMS.

Hopefully these two books will help:

  1. Happy Hormones: The Natural Treatment Programs for Weight Loss, PMS, Menopause, Fatigue, Irritability, Osteoporosis, Stress, Anxiety, Thyroid Imbalances and More

  2. Is It Me or My Hormones? The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly about PMS, Perimenopause, and all the Crazy Things that Occur with Hormone Imbalance.

Something that already helped was setting up my mirror in preparation to bellydance, and seeing that bellydancing already appears to have done me a bit of good. I'm actually a bit surprised, since it didn't feel like that strenuous of an exercise.

Definitely nice to know that my physique isn't hopelessly at the mercy of my recent goldfish cracker binges. :-)


Addition, Oct. 29, 2016, 3:25 AM EDT. I'm finally using my standing desk, since about an hour ago. Both my Toughbook CF-C1's fit on it. And I can even do stuff with my desktop computer from across the room, thanks to the long cords of my USB keyboard and mouse.

So far, I actually like it. It's really easy to concentrate on reading while standing, fidgeting, sometimes dancing (which is particularly fun with my own music collection), and also doing more mindless exercises like squats. Whenever I get tired of it, I can sit on my office chair, or even my bed.


Addition, Oct. 29, 2016, 5:38 AM EDT. I finally returned to mostly sitting maybe 20 minutes after writing the preceding, largely because I finally got cold and wanted a blanket.

Anyway, in Is It Me or My Hormones?, adrenal-related stuff is mentioned, and I found the author actually wrote another book called Is It Me or My Adrenals?: Your Proven 30-Day Plan for Overcoming Adrenal Fatigue and Feeling Fantastic Again, which isn't available on Clevnet.

It's interesting that this stuff is all connected. And also sad that PMS and related problems are so common, and it sounds like a lot of women have it much worse than I do. Anyway, hopefully this book will have some good solutions. Definitely interested in reading the rest of the book, and also the Happy Hormones book.

It would be so nice to find to a way to cure all or most of my menstrual symptoms. At least I haven't gotten a headache lately.


Additions, Oct. 31, 2016, 3:14 AM/3:33 AM EDT. On Oct. 29th, slept sometime between 12:59 PM and 7:25 PM. Kept waking up thirsty and with a bit of congestion, and also had some jaw aches, all of which soon went away after I got up. Felt energetic enough for a while to try doing the Learn Belly Dancing video again.

But, after maybe a half hour, I started getting a bit tired, cold, and my nose got a bit runny and my gum's sore spot acted up again, so I stopped, and took some additional Vitamin C from time to time. I think maybe I had another mild cold, but I'm feeling better now.

I forgot to mention before that my relatives also had slight cold symptoms too back around when I felt most beleaguered by cold symptoms a couple weeks ago, so I'm now pretty sure what I had back then was a cold rather than caffeine withdrawal symptoms.


There's such a huge variety of books on Clevnet, I got quite distracted from the books on hormones, and also never finished the adrenal fatigue books I mentioned quite a while back.

Definitely still interested in reading them all, particularly the ones about hormones, since menstrual issues have been a problem for me ever since my cycle first began. I'm not even sure how old I was - anywhere from 11 to 13, I guess, so, that's around 22 to 24 years of roughly monthly afflictions. In comparison, adrenal fatigue is a relatively new possible problem for me.

But I'm sure resolving my hormonal issues will probably help my possible adrenal issues, and vice versa, since those books said hormonal issues and adrenal issues are very related.


I can believe it might be possible to greatly reduce my menstrual issues, even though I recall only one month in my life when I had either no cramps, or such insignificant cramps I didn't need a painkiller. I might even have been less tired than usual. I think that happened sometime in the latter half of the 1990's.

Alas, I never was able to figure out what caused that unusually not-so-unpleasant period, so I was never able to replicate that. I think at the time I thought maybe it was somehow related to me recently eating yams (sweet potatoes), but when I tried that again soon before or during other periods, it didn't fix my problems.

My time of the month was never so bad that I felt really inspired to carefully investigate what I could do to alleviate it other than taking painkillers, so I always just tolerated it.

But, now that I'm possibly in the middle of recovering from adrenal fatigue, I'd especially like to learn how to avoid another period-induced slump, if possible.


Other than reading, the most time-consuming thing I did yesterday (and today) was try to build a web browser add-on for Pale Moon (or IceCat, or SeaMonkey, or Firefox) by modifying and adding to a handy example add-on I found on GitHub. My add-on isn't done yet, but hopefully won't take too long to finish. I might try to figure out how to release it on the official Firefox add-ons site.

It definitely feels much easier to think and concentrate lately. I can't wait to get my copy of XSLT 2.0 and XPath 2.0 Programmer's Reference.

Slept better on Oct. 30th, sometime between 2:44 PM and 11:04 PM, and I feel much better than yesterday.


Additions, Nov. 4, 2016, 6:53 AM/7:00 AM/8:19 AM EDT. On Oct. 31st, slept sometime between 5:21 PM and 11:05 PM. Slept well enough, though I probably should have stayed asleep longer. Only had slight congestion when I first woke up. I think PMS, and/or slightly too little sleep, and/or taking magnesium in my morning instead of my evening made me a bit tired that day.

On Nov. 1st/2nd, slept sometime between 7:28 PM and 1:58 AM. Had some slight congestion both before and after sleeping. But, felt well-rested enough, though not really in the mood to exercise. Started to get a bit tired around 8:30 AM, but overall was in a good mood, even though I was feeling more and more menstrual. Didn't get a headache on Nov. 2nd, though I got close.

On Nov. 2nd, slept sometime between 3:55 PM and 11:00 PM. Nov. 3rd was my worst day recently - cramps, a headache, and my gum's sore spot acting up (which Vitamin C and eating better helped with). Probably my cycle is going to start very soon. Also had sometimes been sneezing and coughing, so, maybe I still have a slight cold. Wasn't really in the mood to exercise, but was still a lot more energetic than I was before quitting my electric blanket.

On Nov. 3rd/4th, slept sometime between 9:28 PM and 3:20 AM. Didn't wake up congested, but I was pretty thirsty and have had a slight headache (but no cramps), and haven't felt like doing much of anything today besides reading, trying to go back to sleep, and updating this blog post. So... I'm definitely back in a slump again, though still better off than before quitting my electric blanket.


On Oct. 31st, Nov. 1st, and Nov. 2nd, I had some chocolate hazelnut Piroulines. Not sure if they had any negative effects, since I think my headaches, etc. are most likely related to PMS.

A symptom I hadn't had before (which I first got on Nov. 3rd) was an odd cramp in my back. Taking off my bra helped a lot with that. And avoiding lying on my side while I use my computers. Fortunately, it hasn't come back yet today.


I never got around to returning to the health-related books, because I was so busy with other books, and building my web browser add-on.

Was in a quite bad mood on Nov. 1st when I was stuck struggling to make my web browser add-on work, but by (or on) Nov. 2nd, I got it working well and pretty close to done, which put me in a quite good mood.

Misrecalled the date of my last cycle, and thought my cycle might start later, so, I mistakenly thought I had more time than I actually did to read the books on hormones before my monthly malaise began. Guess I ought to hurry up and read them, though at times (particularly yesterday) I was tempted to rush to release my web browser add-on.


Additions, Nov. 7, 2016, 10:33/10:35 AM EST. On Nov. 4th, took a nap sometime between 10:35 AM and 2:09 PM, and felt much better after that.

On Nov. 5th, slept sometime between 12:03 AM and 4:50 AM. All day felt close to my cycle starting, but, I think maybe it got delayed by stress.

I rarely mind when my cycle gets delayed, even though it's always nice to know I'm not pregnant. But a welcome side effect of a delay is that my worst symptoms like cramps and headaches tend to go away. I didn't feel totally back to normal, but much better. But started to get a bit congested with a slightly runny nose the more tired I got. Not sure if I had (or have) a lingering cold or what. I guess that could be another thing interfering with my cycle.

On Nov. 6th, slept sometime between 1:09 AM EDT and 7:08 AM EST. Was feeling especially menstrual in the hours after I woke up, but that faded. Still wasn't at my best, but still much better than before quitting my electric blanket.


On Nov. 6th-7th, slept sometime between 7:15 PM and 1:22 AM, and 2:18 AM and 6:49 AM. Finally, my cycle started. But I still feel better than I did on Nov. 3rd (the day my cramps and headache were so bad I thought my cycle was about to start). Still needed an Advil for cramps, though.

These past few days, I mostly have just been reading books other than the books I intended to read, browsing the web, and (unusually for me) watching a lot of political TV with my family. Made various notes related to my programming projects but did little actual programming. Also wrote a blog post on political topics, but didn't have the nerve to actually post it. Even just trying to decide whether or not to post it stressed me out so much that that might be part of what delayed my cycle.

So, I finally decided totally against posting it, since if even just thinking about posting it stressed me out that much, it probably would've been way too stressful for me to deal with actually posting it, especially while I'm still recovering from possible adrenal fatigue. Though I've never been really good at dealing with stress even when I didn't have possible adrenal fatigue.

On the other hand, I should probably give myself a bit more credit, because if I couldn't handle stress at all, then, years ago, my chronic sleep deprivation from my severe sleep issues would have prevented me from getting excellent grades in school on tests and in some classes, and I wouldn't have been able to do such a good job at the only job I stayed with long-term (Nov. 2002-Jan. 2004) that my employer said I did the work of 3 people. And I wasn't even taking Vitamin C (the "Stress Buster") back in those days.


Even though it's a bit too late now, I guess I should try to finish reading the aforementioned health-related books, so hopefully next month will be better.

So far, definitely not in the mood to do much of anything today. Just going to take it easy, relax (which doesn't necessarily exclude working on my programming projects, which I find relaxing), and await my recovery from my monthly malaise.

I'm very glad to finally have my physical copy of XSLT 2.0 and XPath 2.0 Programmer's Reference. It's a nice, sturdy hardcover with 1316 pages, and I'm sure it will be tremendously useful when I return to my XSLT project.


Addition, Nov. 12, 2016, 3:14 AM EST. On Nov. 8th, slept sometime between 3:29 AM and 8:26 AM. On Nov. 9th, slept sometime between 7:14 AM and 12:21 PM. On Nov. 10th, slept sometime between 1:51 AM and 8:02 AM. And on Nov. 11th, slept sometime between 2:34 AM and 10:07 AM.

Not much to add. Had headaches at times, which might be related to eating a bit too much chocolate for too many days in a row. Or else related to my monthly malaise. Fortunately, that ended yesterday, which made me feel much better regardless of anything going on in the world.

However, I'm still going to stay off of political topics, not because I have no opinions, but because it would still probably be too stressful for me to say anything.

I think Vitamin C (the "Stress Buster") has been helping me a lot, but, I still don't want to push myself too hard.


Still haven't read the aforementioned books on hormones and adrenal fatigue, but hopefully I'll get around to it before next month.

Lately, got re-interested in compiling PHP, PHP-GTK, etc. for use in Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2. Hopefully that will help me get the increasing disorganization on my laptop under control, by making it possible for me to work on (and use) Astroblahhh Desktop, and return to renovating my Puppy Linux Setup Kit. And then I'll also be able to use Saxon/C (and hence, XSLT 2.0) on my laptop instead of only my desktop computer.

At some point (not sure when) I'll do the last boring things I need to do to make my web browser add-on releasable.


Addition, Nov. 12, 2016, 1:12 PM EST. Slept sometime between 5:24 AM and 12:04 PM. I forgot to mention before that for days, I was still having cold-like symptoms, like occasional congestion when I was tired (and often when waking up or going to sleep), sneezing, coughing, and runniness. Also, have been waking up thirsty a lot (including today).

But today, I woke up without congestion. I momentarily had what felt like a strong menstrual cramp (which seems unusual since I don't usually get cramps very much after the 1st day of my cycle), but perhaps it's only from practicing bellydancing yesterday.

Hadn't been bellydancing that much lately, but I still feel stronger and more flexible than I was before I started, and I definitely enjoy it enough to stick with it a lot more than boring exercises. It's even more fun while wearing amusing outfits like body stockings. :-)

Still been drinking slightly salted water to deal with my possible adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance. Definitely makes water taste better to me. Now, I'm repelled by the taste of water without salt. (Actually, for my whole life, I very seldom really liked plain water.)

I think I'm going to go back to avoiding chocolate, at least for a while, in case that had anything to do with my headaches.

Overall, feeling much better, though I wonder why my mild cold symptoms lingered so long. Forgot to try eating garlic.


Addition, Nov. 13, 2016, 3:58 AM EST. Got another headache, starting sometime before 1:45 AM. Haven't had chocolate since the evening of Nov. 11th, so I think this might be a caffeine withdrawal symptom. It seems like maybe I can handle a little chocolate if I don't have it every day for days in a row, but I guess I had too much.

At first I had some energy, but, at some point this turned into another sluggish day, and I probably should have just gone back to sleep, but mostly didn't. Watched TV, read, listened to an audio book and very briefly fell asleep during it, around 5 to 5:15 PM. Got a bit of congestion again later in the evening.

Glanced at a bunch more hormone books from Clevnet. Too tired to comment much, but, I was amused by the title This Gland Is Your Gland: Your Hormones. :-)


Additions, Nov. 13, 2016, 4:41 PM/4:58 PM EST. Slept sometime between 4:46 AM and 10:52 AM. Tired, with a bit of congestion and runniness, which didn't last long. And, until quite recently, was headachy.

I think I better strictly avoid all chocolate for a long time, since maybe it's overstimulating for my possibly still fatigued adrenals, and I wasn't having so much trouble with headaches until after I started eating chocolate again.

I'll miss it a bit, but, I like avoiding headaches more than I like any of the caffeinated treats I've quit. And non-caffeinated treats such as pumpkin spice Teeccino, pumpkin pie, pumpkin donuts, etc. are a far more than adequate substitute, at least for me.


Addition, Nov. 14, 2016, 3:02 PM EST. Slept sometime between 3:20 AM and 12:08 PM. Feeling much better overall today. Mostly just been reading, but, hopefully I'll be in the mood to return to some of my projects soon.

Addition, Nov. 15, 2016, 2:35 AM EST. Another day spent on books and TV. And an audio book, which I only got because there wasn't an ebook copy available on Clevnet - The Hormone Secret.

I usually prefer to avoid audio books since skimming visually is faster. But, at least Clevnet lets you increase the speed. And it's easier to avoid getting distracted, since I tend to just close my eyes and listen, which makes me less prone to start doing other things, like wandering around the web.

I still didn't get far in the audio book yet, but, I learned a bit, and now think that boosting my testosterone might help me.

Also, interestingly, that audio book mentioned that Vitamin D is a hormone rather than a vitamin. Which reminded me, I haven't taken Vitamin D in a while (probably none since I last mentioned it), so I might try that again too.


Definitely still doing better, but not at my best (even though I'm still better off than I was before quitting my electric blanket). My gum's sore spot has been bothering me more often, and I've been taking Vitamin C more frequently to deal with that, and also since I think it's good for me in general.

I vaguely remember Vitamin D seemed like it might have helped my gum's sore spot too, so that's another reason I'm interested in resuming Vitamin D.


Addition, Nov. 15, 2016, 2:20 PM EST. Slept sometime between 3:32 AM and 9:02 AM, at which point I didn't even get up, just tried to go back to sleep for a long time. Finally did fall asleep sometime after 9:45 AM (the last time I looked at the clock), and woke up again around 12:49 PM. Was woken up by thirst a lot (as usual).

Took my usual "morning" vitamins - one 500mg Ovega 3, two 500mg Rite-Aid Vitamin C.

Also took 5 Nature Made Vitamin D3 2000 IU. Plus two Nature Made magnesium citrate (which add up to 250 mg, since it's 2 capsules per serving), to try to avoid Vitamin D possibly making me jittery.

Also will eat some kale salad for Vitamin K, and keep drinking cow's milk for calcium, since I read before that magnesium, Vitamin D3, Vitamin K2, and calcium "work synergistically with one another".

And will try harder not to forget Nature Made Stress B. The Hormone Secret audio book said Vitamins B, C, and D might all help with testosterone. I definitely feel better and also less headache-prone when I take Nature Made Stress B.

Until listening to The Hormone Secret audio book, I didn't realize testosterone was so beneficial even to women and that women can actually be deficient in it. Too bad it would take several hours for me to get through the rest of the audio book, even playing it at 1.5x speed. It would be about 5 1/2 hours at normal speed. It seems like a good book so I'm actually tempted, but perhaps I should move on to books I can just read instead.


Still feeling a bit sleepy (though still much more energetic than I was before quitting my electric blanket). But perhaps I'll perk up more soon, since I took Vitamin D at 1:30 PM.

I really hope I can figure out how to consistently feel fine. I think eating chocolate at all was a mistake. Maybe even that was part of what delayed my cycle.

Another interesting thing The Hormone Secret audio book mentioned was that women are having hormone problems much younger in life nowadays due to most people's lives being more stressful, and more exposure to chemicals like pesticides (if I recall correctly).

In retrospect, it's pretty clear I've had hormonal problems ever since I was a teenager. I wonder if and how they relate to my severe sleep issues.

Another thing I might try is avoiding or decreasing high-glycemic-index foods including (but not limited to) sugar, since maybe my body will have an easier time generating the appropriate hormones if it's not so busy generating insulin to deal with sugary and/or other high-glycemic-index foods.


Addition, Nov. 15, 2016, 4:41 PM EST. Actually still not feeling jittery. Felt a bit overemotional in the past couple hours, but that has subsided after eating some oatmeal pasta with lots of salt and parmesan, and best of all, garlic. I craved meatballs but we have nothing like that around, so, couldn't eat any. Had milk. Also took Nature Made Stress B.

I feel better than I did earlier, but almost like I could go back to sleep. Maybe I should. Or I guess I might as well continue listening to the (or an) audio book, since doing that while tired is easier than reading.

I guess eating all that chocolate might have worsened (or brought back) my caffeine withdrawal. Won't make that mistake again.

Additions, 5:01 PM/5:03/5:28 PM EST. I think I'm going to give up on most of my already rather minimal efforts to be vegetarian until my health improves. So, maybe I'll even try a non-vegetarian fish oil Omega 3 at some point, if I can find one that I can trust is free of mercury, radiation, and other pollution.

On the other hand, worrying about pollutants might stress me out more than fish oil might help me, so maybe I won't take fish oil.


Additions, 6:25 PM/6:28 PM EST. Seems like the Vitamin D jitters are starting. I guess I better try some other brands of Vitamin D, since if I can find one I'm not allergic(?) to, Vitamin D might be really good for me. (Actually, I think it still does me some good anyway, but it would be much better if it didn't make me jittery.) Or maybe I just need to take even more magnesium anytime I take Vitamin D.

Just took two more Nature Made magnesium citrates. I wonder if having four of those in my "morning" would have kept the Vitamin D jitters away all day?


Addition, Nov. 16, 2016, 12:20 AM EST. Got a bit overemotional again for a little while without sufficient justification, but, I've been doing much better since around 8 PM. I feel physically and emotionally better, more energetic and interested in exercise, my gum's sore spot has subsided again, and I'm also more optimistic.

I wonder if maybe part of my problem lately had been, my body's Vitamin D reserves recently finally started getting low, after perhaps several weeks when they had been adequate (or at least, far better than usual) thanks to the large amounts of Vitamin D I took in September, and perhaps even my sunbathing back in September. (Though I still don't think I want to sunbathe again - explanation here.)

Good thing The Hormone Secret audio book reminded me of Vitamin D. I think Vitamin D really does make an overall good difference for me, and quite possibly is part of why I have the impression that I might have been doing better overall in October than most of November until now.

Too bad taking Nature Made Vitamin D3 2000 IU seems to make me jittery even if I only take 1. So, it's definitely not something I want to take daily. I'll just have to experiment with different brands, amounts, timing (once a week, or even less often?), and amounts of magnesium and other nutrients to have along with the Vitamin D.


Today, I tried to decrease the amount of sugar I typically consume. Was dismayed and surprised to notice that my usual cow's milk actually somehow has 11g of sugars per cup, according to the label. Doesn't even taste sweet to me. But, maybe I'll try some sort of organic milk instead if I can find any, even if it's a bit more expensive.

I tried having unsweetened pumpkin spice Teeccino. Unlike unsweetened tea or coffee, I found it pretty close to drinkable, but ended up putting in about two spoonfuls of raw organic honey without any sucanat. Was definitely still excellent.

Though surprisingly, even my half and half has sugars - one brand I use has 2g of sugars per two tablespoons, and the brand I usually use has 1g of sugars per two tablespoons. Hopefully that's not a lot. In any case, I don't think I can give up half and half. Though actually, I forgot to even try my Teeccino without half and half. Guess I'll try that tomorrow, though I doubt I'll like it.


Didn't get much done - read a little on topics other than health, and watched TV.

But I feel so much better now. I think Vitamin D is helping me get back on track.


Addition, Nov. 16, 2016, 6:41 AM EST. Around 1:28 AM, started to get worse nasal congestion than I ever recently had. I got so nervous about it I wondered if it was asthma (which I've never had before), but, I could still breathe fine through my mouth. It went away after I drank some water (which happened to be unsalted), so I soon stopped worrying about it, even though I still don't know what caused that.

Didn't take any more magnesium, but gradually got calmer, and I think probably the Vitamin D jitters have worn off completely by now. I feel capable of going to sleep soon. The old frequent urination problem has come back, though.

I'm guessing the Vitamin D jitters aren't so good for my adrenals. But, other than that, I think Vitamin D is very helpful to me. Lately, before taking Vitamin D, I had to take Vitamin C much more often than in the past to get rid of my gum's sore spot, but after taking Vitamin D, my gum's sore spot felt better even though I didn't keep taking Vitamin C every several hours today.

So, figuring out how to take Vitamin D without having to go through the ordeal of jitters definitely seems a worthwhile pursuit.


Addition, Nov. 16, 2016, 2:56 PM EST. Slept sometime between 7:26 AM and 12:40 PM. Tried to listen to the rest of The Hormone Secret audio book, but even at 2x speed, I didn't have the patience, so I returned it and used Clevnet's Recommend feature to ask Clevnet to get the ebook version.

Feeling fine now, even though sleeping longer probably would have been better. Maybe magnesium before sleep would've helped me do that.

Now that I feel better, I'd rather focus on other things than health-related stuff, even though I probably ought to read more health-related stuff, and maybe I will. Not really in the mood to write much, so, guess that's all I have to say for now.


Addition, Nov. 16, 2016, 8:58 PM EST. Listened a while to a different audio book (fiction), and fell asleep again sometime between 5:12 PM and 8:32 PM, despite the annoying frequent urination problem which still hasn't completely gone away. Still kind of tired, but no trouble with congestion.

Still not in the mood to write much. I'd rather make more progress with my projects that all this health stuff has often distracted me from.


Addition, Nov. 17, 2016, 4:43 AM EST. Recently posted this new blog post:

Always check ingredients lists, since you never know when a food company might add sucralose, or who knows what else.

Don't know if that cereal I've been eating from time to time since several months ago always had sucralose, or if the sucralose was recently added. But it sure gave me a fright several hours ago when I finally noticed sucralose in the ingredients list.

That fright probably wasn't good for my adrenals. But, at the moment, I feel largely OK, perhaps because after that horrible discovery, I took a lot of extra Vitamin C (the "Stress Buster").

And, even though I probably should have waited until I was more calm and relaxed, I also tried a different brand of Vitamin D3 - Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels. I took just 1, and so far, I haven't felt jittery. So maybe I'm just allergic to something in Nature Made Vitamin D3 2000 IU.


I think all the stress from discovering I was unknowingly eating sucralose has made me tired, and a little headachy. But, I feel like I'll probably recover quickly.


Addition, Nov. 17, 2016, 4:14 PM EST. Slept sometime between 6:22 AM and 11:02 AM. Wanted to go back to sleep, and tried until about 11:32 AM, but couldn't.

But overall, I think I'm doing much better - for a while I felt a lot more energetic today, and maybe the situation with my hormones is improving too, judging by my increased amorous interest. Except now I'm getting a bit sleepy again.

But, I feel more like I did during the good parts of September and October, and I think it might be because of Vitamin D. And I suspect my caffeine withdrawal back in September/October might have been much worse if I hadn't had so much Vitamin D around when I quit caffeine.


Around 2:40 PM, I took one 500mg Ovega 3, two 500mg Rite-Aid Vitamin C, five Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels, and two Nature Made magnesium citrate (250 mg total).

Still haven't gotten any possibly Vitamin D-related jitters so far, but judging by the other day, I guess that might take a while, if it happens at all.

Going to eat more probiotic yogurt to try to undo some of the harm sucralose might have done.

And I'm pleased that Teeccino contains a prebiotic called inulin, according to the Teeccino website.


Addition, Nov. 18, 2016, 5:41 AM EST. Slept sometime between 9:14 PM and 4:15 AM. Before sleep, had a slight headache until after I took Nature Made Stress B.

Didn't get jittery at all yesterday (or today so far) despite taking Vitamin D! So, I guess I'll stick with Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels rather than trying multiple other brands, since that seems to work fine for me.

Wonder what I was sensitive to in Nature Made Vitamin D3 2000 IU. Two people I know who take that said it doesn't make them jittery at all, and one of those people takes it before bed.

Not sure how many Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels I'll take and how often. I definitely don't want to overdose on Vitamin D, but I don't know if there's a way to measure your Vitamin D levels except a blood test, which seems like too much trouble. So, I'll just be cautious.


So far, I feel better than I did yesterday - better-rested and not on the verge of a headache. Nature Made Stress B really seems to do me a lot of good.

I might go back to sleep again, though. Still seems best not to push myself too hard.


I think I'm fine with consuming less actual sugar, but, I don't think I want to strictly avoid all high glycemic foods, because I am pretty fond of mashed potatoes and I feel like they're more good for me than bad.

A substitute I read about, mashed cauliflower, also sounds tasty. Lots of butter, salt, and spices on that sounds really good. And garlic, too.

Mmm, garlic bread. Maybe I can figure out how to make garlic bread using the quinoa flour I got. Still not really in the mood to cook unless it's very easy, though. Would really like to get back to my various programming projects.


Addition, Nov. 18, 2016, 4:54 PM EST. My energy improved a lot for a while after eating. Was watching movies, but became eager to stretch, fidget, and exercise a bit.

Almost returned to compiling PHP, etc., but ended up reading instead. Started to get tired again around maybe 2:45 PM. Happily, my gums haven't been sore even though I only took 2 Vitamin C's today, and 3 Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels.

That annoying foggy-minded spacy feeling I sometimes had before has come back a bit. Also have sometimes been verging on a headache. Maybe all that chocolate I had on and before Nov. 11th made some of my caffeine withdrawal symptoms come back. But, at least I haven't had jaw soreness for a long time now. Not sure what day that stopped.

Perhaps someday I'll try to figure out what amount of chocolate I can eat without ending up with caffeine withdrawal. But it's far too soon for me to experiment with that.

I guess I ought to go to sleep soon, but I think an audio book might keep me awake for a few more hours.


Addition, Nov. 19, 2016, 2:20 PM EST. Stayed awake to watch TV with family, and also to read, and listen to an audio book (which I almost fell asleep during). So, slept sometime between 4:22 AM and 1:35 PM. Woke up thirsty at times (as usual). But haven't had congestion and runniness lately, just a bit of a cough at times yesterday.

Nothing really interesting to add at the moment, but, I definitely feel much better overall, and hope I'll soon feel like returning to my programming projects.


Addition, Nov. 21, 2016, 4:00 AM EST. On Nov. 20th, slept poorly sometime between 5:31 AM and 7:27 AM, since I fell asleep while listening to an audio book. Then I stopped the audio book and went back to sleep again until around 1:54 PM.

Wasn't extraordinarily energetic today since I probably could have slept longer and better. Didn't have as much of that foggy-minded out of it feeling at the start of my day, but have gotten it a bit more as I get more tired.

But, overall, I've felt mostly fine. Finally had a particularly nice dream for the first time in a while. Not going to write about it in detail, but, I think that dream was probably a hint that my testosterone levels are probably improving. :-)


Read, listened to audio books, watched TV with my family. And on Nov. 20th, finally compiled PHP 5.6.28, PHP-GTK, etc. to use in Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2.

Haven't done much with those yet, since after that, I went back to watching TV and reading. But, hopefully that all will make it much easier to renovate my Puppy Linux Setup Kit, among other things. I even got Saxon/C installed, so now I'll be able to work on my XSLT project on my laptop instead of only my desktop.


Additions, Nov. 24, 2016, 12:58 AM/8:25 AM EST. I'm not really in the mood anymore to continue to update this in much detail, since I feel so much better that I'd rather focus more on getting more useful things done.

I still don't feel perfect all the time, of course - still varying amounts of energy, varying moods, varying sleep/wake times, etc.

But no headaches lately! It seems I'm definitely better off avoiding caffeine entirely - even small-seeming amounts of chocolate.


I borrowed/returned too many books on Clevnet again, accidentally causing the site to automatically restrict me from borrowing more books for several days. So, since I now have fewer other books to distract me, I returned to reading The Adrenal Reset Diet.

Seems like a really excellent book, though currently, I don't have the patience to go into detail about all the things I found interesting.


If I understand correctly, the basic idea of the adrenal reset diet is to eat more protein for breakfast, and far less carbs than the average carb-filled breakfast, then increase the amount of carbs in later meals, since more carbs help you wind down for sleep. (Which mirrors my experiences with feeling sleepier after I ate a lot of goldfish crackers.) So, maybe I'll try that.

Just not sure I'm going to write much about it. Writing feels like such a difficult, time-consuming chore sometimes. So is programming, but at the moment, I think my software projects are more likely to do more good, both in my life and hopefully the world.


After not using Astroblahhh Desktop for so long, I've been feeling so overwhelmed by clutter and disorganization.

But, hopefully the stuff I'm doing with XSLT, the VUE: Visual Understanding Environment concept mapping software, PHP, PHP-GTK, my Puppy Linux Setup Kit, and eventually probably the graph database software OrientDB and perhaps Neo4j will help me solve these problems even better than Astroblahhh Desktop ever did so far.

Astroblahhh Desktop already was a tremendous help, but there's still tons of room for improvement.

Not sure exactly what I'll work on next or how long it will take. But, I might (or might not) be more quiet for a while.


Addition, Nov. 24, 2016, 8:25 AM EST. Just thought I'd add that I still am going to probably continue to procrastinate for possibly a long time about even checking a lot of my email and forums.

Even though today I'm feeling physically better than I have in weeks, I still don't think I should do anything too stressful.

Also, Happy Thanksgiving.


Addition, Dec. 9, 2016, 2:31 PM EST. If I recall correctly, on two different days before Dec. 1st, I had a slight headache or almost-headache, nothing too bad.

On Dec. 1st, I had a pretty bad headache, and also slept very poorly because I was too cold. But I also had hot flashes, so, I kept fluctuating between being too hot and too cold.

And the usually dormant sore spot on my lower right gums suddenly got much worse than ever before - even plain cold water made it ache for a while, so much that I was afraid it was a toothache, even though it wasn't unbearable.

Another reason I thought it might be a toothache is because usually, it's my lower left sore spot that acts up, and the one on the lower right hadn't bothered me in quite a while, except for bleeding more than usual lately from flossing. I actually mistakenly thought maybe the gum disease around that spot had been going away, and that maybe it was only bleeding because maybe I accidentally injured that spot through perhaps not-gentle-enough flossing.


Anyway, the ache worried me a lot, so I saw the dentist that day, and it turned out that there's not a cavity - it's officially gingivitis.

I also got an X-ray that day - and it turned out that at the tip of a root-canaled tooth to the right of the sore spot, there's some bacteria which is apparently the remnants of a severe infection many years ago! (Probably was in 2006, since that's when I had a major toothache and got that root canal.)


So, I was given a prescription for penicillin, and told to rinse my mouth with warm salt water and massage upward on the gum.

The dentist also mentioned that he often recommends Vitamin C for gum disease (a remedy I had read about on the internet and tried without asking my dentist), so he was glad to hear it was helping me.


I suspect the combination of being too cold, not sleeping well, probably having PMS (which often seems to cause me to require more Vitamin C to avoid my gums' sore spots flaring up), and being a bit stressed out is what caused that usually dormant sore spot to suddenly flare up.

However, even during the worst flare-up, it didn't bother me constantly - room temperature water was pretty much fine, eating actually didn't bother it much, and only cold water made it ache a while, though not unbearably. Other than that, it felt normal.

I was surprised when that sore spot calmed down again pretty soon, and already wasn't troublesome anymore by the time I got to the dentist, probably because I had taken Vitamin C soon after it started acting up. (Actually, I think on Dec. 1st I forgot to take my "morning" Vitamin C until after I ate something, and that sore spot flared up.)

It flared up again later, but, in addition to taking more Vitamin C, I tried the warm salt water rinse, and that immediately helped. And, instead of brushing my teeth with only water as I had lazily been doing for a while, I resumed using toothpaste more frequently.

I was doing so well that I decided to see if all this alone (without resorting to penicillin) might be adequate to fight off the infection, and surprisingly, I usually felt fine. So I didn't even take penicillin at all before my next dentist appointment on Dec. 8th.


After my Dec. 1st dentist appointment, I read a bit about root canals, and found this worrying page, among others:

Toxic Tooth—How a Root Canal Could Be Making You Sick
(May 31, 2015 from Mercola.com)

This made me wonder if the sore spots from my gum disease all might be related to my root canals. I think I actually only have had two recurrent sore spots, and both are near one or two of my three root canals. My usual sore spot at the lower left is near 2 root canals, and my lower right sore spot is near 1 root canal!

Since my lower left sore spot always bothered me more frequently than my lower right sore spot, that made me wonder if an X-ray might reveal infection near my lower left sore spot too.


So, at my Dec. 8th appointment, I got the typical cleaning you're supposed to get every 6 months, and got my yearly complete X-rays done. No cavities at all.

Unfortunately, it turned out the infection around my lower right sore spot (which usually wasn't sore) was still there, so the dentist recommended that I take the penicillin I hadn't yet started.

Surprisingly to me, there turned out to not be very much infection around my lower left root canals, but it sounded like the dentist thought there was some. I should have asked more questions so I could get more certain about what's going on, but, my social anxiety gets in the way and often prevents me from even thinking of intelligent questions or things to say until it's too late.


Anyway, talking about the particularly bothersome lower right sore spot, the dentist said if that flares up again, the root canal specialist would charge me $1100 (and that wouldn't be covered by Medicaid) to "re-root canal" it, or, it will have to be extracted.

But, from what I've been reading about root canals (like this aforementioned article), I think maybe extracting all of my root canals might be healthiest anyway, and probably healthier than "re-root canaling" them and leaving them in, for $1100 apiece (or $3300 in all for all 3).

If I understand correctly what I've read on the web, root canals can harbor infection, and antibiotics probably can't entirely disinfect them, because the antibiotics can't enter a dead tooth as well as they can a live tooth.

Nonetheless, I started taking my penicillin yesterday (Dec. 8th), and will be eating probiotic yogurt at the same time and afterward, since I read various pages (such as this one) saying that's a good idea.

Hopefully the penicillin will kill the infection that presumably made its way out from my root canals into my gums - but, I don't know if the penicillin will permanently eliminate the problem, since I'm guessing penicillin alone won't be able to completely disinfect my root canaled teeth.


So, perhaps I ought to get all my root canaled teeth extracted. But, since I usually don't have much trouble with my gum's sore spots, and am not sure if my root canals have been causing me other health problems yet, I'll probably just end up leaving them in there for a while longer.

I don't know if my theory that my gingivitis might totally go away if I got all my root canals extracted is correct, but, it's comforting to imagine that the mystery of why I only had those two recurrent sore spots (close to my root canals) instead of gingivitis all over my mouth has possibly been solved, and that perhaps my chronic gingivitis might be curable by getting rid of my root canaled teeth.

I'm now glad that it was financially unfeasible for me to afford a root canal for the tooth I had to have extracted in May 2013. Maybe I would have been better off if I had never gotten any root canals at all, even though having three less teeth probably would have made it more difficult to chew.


Despite my gingivitis flareup, I've been doing pretty well, energy-wise, and even mood-wise. Seems like emphasizing protein in my "morning" (as suggested in The Adrenal Reset Diet) really does help.

Also, on Dec. 1st, I found something which seems quite helpful for my PMS. I had been avoiding eating flaxseed (warning) (ground up with a coffee grinder) for a while because I was afraid the estrogen-like stuff in it might disturb my hormone balance somehow, so I wanted to read more about that and hormones in general before I tried it again.

However, I actually had never before noticed any good or bad effects that I could be sure were related to eating ground flaxseed (warning), and I was in a bit of a reckless mood on Dec. 1st since I was so worried about my teeth, and I also found a web page which says ground flaxseed (warning) can help with PMS - so, I tried ground flaxseed (warning) on Dec. 1st soon before my dentist appointment, and my headache and hot flashes soon went away!

I've been having two (or at least 1) tablespoons of ground flaxseed (warning) most days since then, and have definitely not felt very menstrual at all lately, which is a very good thing.

However, I had only 1 spoonful on Dec. 5th, and skipped ground flaxseed (warning) on Dec. 6th and most of the 7th - then on Dec. 7th, I got in a very sad mood. But I felt much better after I resumed eating ground flaxseed (warning).


On Dec. 1st, I actually risked having a caffeinated Barq's root beer - the medium size from Burger King. Quite tasty, and I actually didn't get a headache nor other problems after that.

Also on Dec. 1st, since I think my room being so cold is part of what brought on my gingivitis flareup, I got another electric blanket (mostly since I couldn't remember where I put the old one's controller), which I intended to only use while awake.

But, today, I did end up sleeping with that new electric blanket. And though I think the warmth did help me sleep, and being warm is probably better for my immune system than frequently being too cold, I suspect the electric blanket might have interfered with my sleep quality to an extent, even though I'm doing OK so far today and feel energetic enough and not tired. But I guess I probably shouldn't keep sleeping with it.

I probably should try to go back to using multiple layers of regular blankets (plus my unplugged electric blanket), a thick robe, sweatpants, socks, and a hat. And maybe gloves too. It's awfully tempting to keep using the electric blanket, though.


Surprisingly, overall, I've felt mostly fine lately. I attribute this largely to the ground flaxseed (warning) possibly helping with my PMS, increased Vitamin C, and I also suspect it's partly because I've been taking 4 Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels multiple times a week. (I'm still wary of taking too much since it's possible to overdose on Vitamin D.) And emphasizing protein in my "morning" meals.

Still mostly haven't returned to reading books on hormones, adrenal fatigue, etc., since I'm more interested in my programming projects and other topics.

So, I'm probably going to continue to only infrequently update this blog post.

Just thought it was particularly interesting that my gingivitis might be caused by my root canals, and that ground flaxseed (warning) seems to do wonders for my PMS. And that my energy levels have been pretty great, too.


Addition, Dec. 15, 2016, 11:28 PM EST. Been doing pretty well, even though (or because?) my time of the month has been delayed, perhaps by the penicillin.

(But if I'm having an early, perhaps stress-induced menopause at the age of 35, that wouldn't be all bad, because then I wouldn't have to worry about pregnancy ever again, around 15 years sooner than I expected!)

I still have had recurrent gingivitis despite the penicillin, but, it has never gotten as bad again as it did on Dec. 1st. And having even more Vitamin C than usual, and eating better than usual, also seems to help.

Haven't had any headaches lately! And was in the mood to resume bellydancing yesterday, which somehow improved my mood even more.

I've mostly been preoccupied with Clevnet books (mostly not on the topic of health), and the wonderful XSLT 2.0 and XPath 2.0 Programmer's Reference, which has already greatly deepened my understanding of XSLT, even though so far I've only gotten to page 122 out of 1316 pages.

Can't wait to finish that, so I can continue making progress with my various programming projects.


Additions, Dec. 17, 2016, 2:26 AM/5:33 AM EST. Haven't had ground flaxseed (warning) since around 2 AM on Dec. 14th, and since at least Dec. 16th, have been feeling increasingly menstrual, so, I think I'm going to resume eating two tablespoons of ground flaxseed (warning) per day.

I really don't mind if that possibly played a part in delaying my cycle, because when my cycle is delayed, I tend to feel much better! I'd probably like to delay it permanently if I could. There are things I like about being a woman, but my cycle is not one of them.


Also have had some congestion and runniness at times.

And starting yesterday (after a few days of my lips being in much better shape than they had been in a long time), I got very dry lips and some lip discoloration, which I've read can be related to hormonal issues, though I'm guessing it's also probably related to the winter weather and the resultant dry air, and likely also from not drinking enough liquids. (I also have long had a tendency to get lip issues as a result of stress. I first noticed that happening to me way back in May 2005, over a year before I got any root canals.)


Took my final penicillin around 9:23 AM on Dec. 16th. I had been taking an increasingly large amount of extra Vitamin C along with my penicillin - at first I only took 2 or 4 500 mg Vitamin C's at a time, but eventually tried as many as 6 at a time along with my penicillin, and also sometimes 4 or 2 Vitamin C's in the hours before my next penicillin dose.

But taking so many vitamins so frequently was a bit annoying (though I can swallow 3 all at once pretty easily). So, on Dec. 15th-16th, I didn't take as much extra I had been. But, judging by my lips (since my gingivitis has been fine), I think I was doing better when I was taking the extra Vitamin C - so, I think I want to continue taking extra Vitamin C.

I read in this article from Mercola.com that the famous Nobel Prize-winning scientist Linus Pauling is said to have taken 12,000 mg per day. (I'd have to take 24 of my current brand of Vitamin C's a day to get that much!)

And I also recently found this long, fascinating page about frequently-administered massive doses of Vitamin C apparently being amazingly good for tons of different ailments, even things as serious as polio, among many other things. I'm not in the mood to deeply research how credible that web page is (or any other that I've mentioned), but, I found it very interesting regardless, so just thought I'd point it out.


Did end up sleeping with my electric blanket yesterday, and the day before, and on some other days before that, and it seemed like I kept waking up much too frequently and didn't sleep as long overall.

So, I'm going to again quit sleeping with it, even though I haven't reached the point of being really fatigued again. My energy levels are still quite good.


Addition, Dec. 17, 2016, 7:53 AM EST. Around 4 AM, started to get tired earlier than usual, around 8 hours after waking.

Could be from not sleeping well enough, or my time of the month (which feels imminent), or both. Maybe also from not emphasizing protein in my "morning" and mostly emphasizing carbs. And Vitamin D3 also seems to give me an energy boost - haven't had Vitamin D3 in a few days.

Starting feeling close to a headache around 4:20 AM, but I think the ground flaxseed (warning) might have started to work, since the almost-headache soon went away. (Not sure when exactly, since I was busy reading.)

I'll be thrilled if ground flaxseed (warning) will even make my actual time of the month (rather than just my PMS) less bad. I wonder if I'll be able to skip Advil for my cramps?

Overall, feeling OK, but might go back to sleep soon. But I don't really want to, because I still am not so tired that I can't concentrate on reading.


Additions, Dec. 17, 2016, 8:14 PM/8:26 PM/8:51 PM EST. Slept sometime between 8:36 AM and 6:54 PM, with my electric blanket unplugged. My time of the month feels pretty close, but still hasn't started yet. I feel all right and pretty energetic.

However, I kept waking up repeatedly very thirsty with very dry lips and dry eyes. Drank a lot of unsalted water (since I didn't have a glass of slightly salted water already prepared), and surprisingly didn't soon end up needing to use the bathroom. So, I probably haven't been drinking enough liquids.

It definitely seems like I've been drinking more water than usual lately, judging by how much faster I've been using up the bottles of water I keep in my room.


Fortunately, I woke up without a trace of gingivitis, judging by my lack of any sensitivity to cold water. I guess maybe I should have been taking tons more Vitamin C my entire life - especially this very stressful year.

But, if I had, maybe I wouldn't have found out about the bacterial infection from the toothache I had in 2006 still living in at least one of my root canaled teeth, and oozing out and possibly causing my gingivitis.

Even if large doses of Vitamin C might enable me to fight off the bacteria from my root canals forever, I still wonder if it might be better to get rid of my root canaled teeth, to give my immune system a break from being constantly besieged.


I actually was doing remarkably well between Dec. 1st and 8th, before I even started penicillin. And probably the penicillin also helped, though maybe not as much or as quickly as I expected, because if I recall correctly, I think it might have worked better and quicker back in 2006.

But I suspect maybe the biggest positive differences were made by greatly increasing my Vitamin C, and eating better and more frequently. (Because before I did that, I still was having a bit of trouble at times with gingivitis despite taking penicillin.) And using toothpaste more frequently instead of often brushing with only water. And I also think Vitamin D3 might have helped too.

Guess I'll see if this lack of gingivitis lasts, and keep taking six 500 mg Vitamin C's at a time at least a couple times a day, possibly more.


Addition, Dec. 19, 2016, 2:02 AM/2:28 AM EST. Still haven't sorted out exactly how much Vitamin C I need and exactly how often to take it. But, I definitely have to take it multiple times throughout the day, since after about 9 hours of no Vitamin C yesterday (or possibly sooner than that), my gum's usual lower left sore spot got a little sensitive to cold.

So, I guess my gingivitis wasn't 100% cured even by penicillin. But, Vitamin C seems to be a reliable enough way for me to control it, especially if I boost my dosage in times of stress, or if I might be getting a cold, or my time of the month. So, for now, I'm not eager to get my root canals extracted anytime soon.


My lips have been getting back to normal. At times I've actually been feeling almost too energetic - in fact, I felt downright anxious until I took enough magnesium.

I actually woke up with an adrenaline rush just from the sound of a vehicle with an unusually loud motor driving by, which scared me awake. So, my adrenals seem to be working. :-)

Besides magnesium, perhaps some other things that might have helped with my anxiety were Activia probiotic yogurt (which I've eaten at various times for months now, and also while I was taking penicillin, and afterward, though maybe not in large enough quantities) and Bigelow probiotic lemon ginger non-caffeinated tea (which I tried for the first time today).

Probably should have been consuming those more frequently, since supposedly anxiety and other problems could be related to the balance of bacteria in your gut, and antibiotics can tremendously interfere with that.

My time of the month still hasn't started. It felt more imminent yesterday than it does today. Didn't eat any ground flaxseed (warning) yesterday, but probably will have some today. Don't know if that will make my time of the month more or less likely to start soon.


Not much else to add, I guess. Been reading or glancing at lots of different Clevnet books, so, I only got to page 142 in XSLT 2.0 and XPath 2.0 Programmer's Reference.

I've been itching to do or make something instead of mostly just reading, and sometimes noting down ideas for my projects. But, I still think I need to learn more before I can make much progress, so, I don't expect to do much in the near future besides reading and experimenting with XSLT, etc.


Addition, Dec. 20, 2016, 3:38 AM/4:23 AM EST. My time of the month is still delayed (though it sometimes feels quite imminent, judging by the unpainful not-quite-cramps in my lower abdomen). So I searched the web a bit on the topic of flax's effects on menstrual cycles, and found this interesting page:

The Seed Rotation Diet: How to Regulate Your Menstrual Cycle with Food

I never noticed any seeds other than flax having an effect on my cycle or PMS, but, that could be because I was never on the lookout for such effects. (For the same reason, I originally didn't even notice flax doing anything for me.)

Fortunately, I like all the seeds mentioned (especially sunflower seeds, though I haven't eaten any lately), so trying that seed rotation diet wouldn't be difficult for me.


This other page says "Regularly eating flaxseeds may help make ovulation more regular."

Not sure I like the sound of that (since maybe I'd rather suppress my ovulation and avoid the nuisance of menstruation), but, eating 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning) per day seems to be making me feel better overall, so, I'm going to just keep doing that for a while regardless.




I also found some pages (including this page and this page) which pointed out that some people can have bad reactions to flax.

Just thought I should point that out, since even though my own experiences with ground flaxseed (warning) have been quite good so far, that doesn't mean it would be good for everyone. (Which probably could be true of many other things I mentioned, too.)

Addition, Jan. 29, 2017, 7:01 PM EST. Today, I found something worrying I wish I had found sooner. When I curiously looked up ground flaxseed (warning) and headaches, I ran across a mention of cyanide here, so I searched for flaxseed (warning) and cyanide, and ran across these other scary pages:

Ground flaxseed and cyanide
From Discuss.Huel.Com

Flax Meal & Cyanide
From Livestrong.com

I don't know if ground flaxseed (warning) has been doing me any harm - I actually thought it was probably helping me, but who knows.

Not sure what to think of this yet, but, just thought I should point it out.


Addition, Jan. 29, 2017, 7:11 PM EST. I had 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning) around 5:06 PM today, and I've been feeling better and less headachy, rather than worse.

So, personally, I don't feel too worried about ground flaxseed (warning), even though I will likely eat less of it in the future.


Additions, Jan. 30, 2017, 1:40 PM/1:48 PM EST. Found a credible-looking page which says "A 1994 study found that, in healthy individuals, daily consumption of as much as 60 grams of raw flaxseed—more than eight tablespoons—was safe."

Q: I recently read that flaxseed contains cyanide. I have been consuming two to three tablespoons of ground flaxseed daily for several years. Should I be concerned? Does this quantity of flaxseed provide a clinically significant amount of cyanide?
From NutritionLetter.Tufts.Edu, Aug. 2011

Another interesting quote:

"Many foods, including not only flax but cashews, almonds, some beans and other plant products, naturally contain very small amounts of cyanide compounds. You’re more likely to ingest these trace amounts of cyanide when such foods are consumed raw, as heat breaks down the compounds. Even when flaxseed is eaten raw, the body has a natural capacity to break down a certain amount of these cyanide compounds."




Additions, Dec. 20, 2016, 4:23 AM/4:27 AM EST. Just found a page which clearly says:

"Flaxseed, on the other hand, might delay the start of your menstrual period."

Sounds great to me. :-D

That same page also says:

'In a University of Rochester study reported in the 1993 issue of the "Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism," women taking flaxseed had a slightly longer luteal phase, the time between ovulation and the start of the next menstrual period.'

I guess I'm probably OK with that too.


Addition, Dec. 22, 2016, 12:14 AM EST. Got a slight headache in the afternoon of Dec. 20, but it went away quite quickly.

Yesterday, I managed to get OrientDB 2.2.13 and PhpOrient 1.2.5 working on my Lucid Puppy Linux 5.2.8 version 004 desktop computer without an internet connection. (I think I might have figured that out before, probably with earlier versions, but if so, I misplaced my notes and had to figure it out again.)

Despite that, and making some progress figuring out how to improve Astroblahhh Desktop, I still had an emotionally rough day, even though I had ground flaxseed (warning). But I probably didn't eat enough food yesterday, so, maybe that's what's wrong.

But maybe delaying my period with ground flaxseed (warning) isn't such a good idea. I don't think I usually have as many emotional issues during my period as I do soon before it, so, maybe I'd be better off not eating ground flaxseed (warning) as often, so my time of the month isn't delayed.

Still been fairly energetic, though not so much yesterday and today. Probably would have slept better if I ate better.


Addition, Dec. 22, 2016, 5:34 AM EST. Finally, my time of the month started, quite a bit late (since I was expecting it around Dec. 7th or 8th).

Didn't try to do anything special to make it happen. I just took my usual "morning" 1 Ovega 3 and (recently usual) six 500mg Vitamin C's.

Then found I was too tired to stay awake despite having slept already for about 7 hours, so I went back to sleep for another couple hours. Woke up with major cramps, and had to rush to the bathroom to put on my biohazard equipment (maxi pads) which I didn't realize I was going to need so soon.


So, maybe it's true that ginger and/or high amounts of Vitamin C, and some other things on that page that I had recently, such as yogurt, eggs, pumpkin (which I had in the form of pumpkin spice Teeccino), and sex, can help induce menstruation.

I got a bit confused about ginger earlier today, due to hastily misreading this web page. But I soon found various other pages (like this one) which pointed out it can induce menstruation. I think maybe I believe that now.

However, I think I vaguely remember trying ginger for that purpose in the past - almost forgot about that. Not sure if it really did much for me - I have the vague recollection that celery seemed to maybe work better for me. But it's possible ginger helped more than I realized.


I didn't even drink very much of that Bigelow probiotic lemon/ginger non-caffeinated herbal tea. I had my first cup the other day (late 18th or early 19th), then neglected to have more (unless I just forgot to write it down) until sometime before 5:30 AM on Dec. 21st.

Might've been interesting to see if ginger is actually good for cramps, but, my cramps were so bad I rushed to take an Advil, since I already know that definitely works well for me. Less than an hour later, I felt fine, and I think my pain might've started decreasing about 20 minutes after I took Advil.


I also ate two spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning), since evidently that wasn't obstructing my time of the month as much as I feared.

Not sure what made me suddenly get worse PMS symptoms recently. Since I mostly avoided headaches, my worst symptom was feeling emotionally awful and anxious even though nothing really bad and actually some good things happened. Don't know if extra ground flaxseed (warning) (beyond the 2 spoonfuls per day I was already eating) would have helped or harmed. Anyway, so far, I feel like it's probably helping me.

I'm so glad that I somehow managed to mostly avoid PMS headaches. And it seems like maybe I had fewer and less severe PMS symptoms in general until very soon before my time of the month started (though it's possible my anxiety around the 18th might also have been related to PMS). I even got less of my usual unpainful non-quite-cramps I usually get beforehand (which I sometimes think of as "preliminary cramps" even though they're so mild I probably shouldn't call them cramps at all).


Don't know if I'm going to try the seed rotation diet, or just keep having ground flaxseed (warning) daily regardless of where I am in my cycle. And I might sometimes eat sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds whenever, just because I like them.

Might go back to sleep again soon, or maybe not. I'm so glad I mostly haven't been this fatigued lately.


Addition, Dec. 22, 2016, 7:20 PM EST. Stayed awake, and didn't get much done today besides reading. But, I actually needed only 1 Advil today since my cramps didn't come back, so, that's definitely an improvement. Didn't have any ginger or ginger tea today, just my usual 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning).


Addition, Dec. 24, 2016, 7:49 AM EST. On Dec. 23rd, was woken up by a headache after sleeping between around 8:25 PM to 1:15 AM. It soon went away, but I kept feeling on the verge of a headache, so I had 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning) around 4:03 AM. Was OK for a while, but I started getting headachy again around 9:52 AM.

I think I usually tend to get headaches before my period rather than during it. But, that one could have been from not eating well enough again, since I started feeling better after eating a microwaveable frozen dinner (chicken fried rice, which I added tomato sauce and parmesan to).


Surprisingly, yesterday, I was doing reasonably well emotionally (compared to my bad days), despite the headaches.

I used to think my PMS-related emotional issues were probably mostly due to being in pain from headaches. But, judging by what happened recently, it seems these are two not-necessarily-related symptoms. I'm quite surprised at how emotionally messed up I recently was before my time of the month, despite not even having a headache. But, at least not having a headache at the same time made it less bad.

So, it seems something, or things (perhaps ground flaxseed (warning)? Or lots more Vitamin C? And/or both? And/or other things?) may have changed my usual patterns for the better.

I guess I should really go back to reading those books about hormones, adrenal fatigue, etc., to see if I can improve my situation even more (since clearly there's still plenty of room for improvement here).


Less than 5 hours of sleep tends not to be enough for me, and sleeping so poorly and relatively briefly, and my jitteriness yesterday (which felt more physical than emotional), made me suspect that I probably have been getting magnesium deficient again. (I also definitely wasn't eating well enough in general, which also tends to worsen my sleep, and can make me overly emotional, and sometimes causes headaches.)

So, sometime before 6 AM on Dec. 23rd, I took 2 Nature Made magnesium citrates, which helped and definitely made me somewhat tired and calmer, but I still felt like I could probably use some more, so, I took 2 more around 1:24 PM.

Then, I slept an especially long time - sometime between 1:30 PM on Dec. 23rd to 4:10 AM on Dec. 24th - and I feel much better overall now. Haven't had such a good long sleep in quite a while, if I recall correctly.

I think maybe I usually haven't been getting enough magnesium lately mostly because I prefer to take magnesium toward the end of my day (since it can make me tired), and the problem is, I tend to get lazy about doing anything (even simple things like taking vitamins) once I get tired.


Recently found this excellent article:

Magnificent Magnesium: The Neglected Mineral We Cannot Live Without
(Sept. 23, 2010 from WestonAPrice.org)

I was particularly intrigued by the parts about "Deaf Smith County, Texas, and the justly famous residents whose teeth refused to succumb to decay".


Addition, Dec. 25, 2016, 7:44 AM EST. Had 2 Nature Made magnesium citrates before sleep, and I feel so much better-rested than usual again that I'm going to try much harder not to skip that anymore. Slept about 10 hours!

But I was only awake for about 13 and a half hours before that. But I felt pretty alert and energetic for most of that time (and now), so, compared to my previous times of the month, I haven't been in so much of a slump.

Skipped ground flaxseed (warning) yesterday, and am still feeling fine.

Still been getting little done besides reading, and pondering what to do next with Astroblahhh Desktop and my Puppy Linux Setup Kit.

Merry Christmas and Merry Grav-Mass. :-)


Additions, Dec. 26, 2016, 9:00 AM/9:33 AM EST. Maybe I shouldn't skip ground flaxseed (warning) and probiotic yogurt, and maybe I need more carbs closer to bedtime. Before sleep, my mood worsened, and I didn't sleep as long or well.

I was still timid and shy even when my mood was better, though, so, it's not like I was feeling perfect before. Anyway, even that imperfect sleep improved my mood, and so did eating.

Starting the day with an emphasis on protein, simply by eating at least 2 hard-boiled eggs in my "morning", definitely seems better for my energy levels than just eating whatever, whenever. That's another thing I should have done yesterday. (Resumed that today.)


Since I ran into a few glitches in the concept mapping software VUE: Visual Understanding Environment, I decided to finally try to learn more about Java programming to see if I can fix those glitches.

I don't want to get too dependent on the Java platform, but, given that I probably don't have the ability to recreate the graph database software OrientDB or Neo4j in some other language or platform, I might be stuck using Java for a while anyway. So I might as well enjoy what there is to enjoy about it and learn what I can.

I've always been apprehensive about Java's reputed security problems, but on the other hand, I always thought it was cool that Java is cross-platform (like one of my favorite platforms, the Z-machine). Java is also used in Android phones. And Java has been around for a pretty long time now, and I assume the Java ecosystem is probably thriving and full of cool already-built stuff to play with and use in your own projects.


I guess I'm also going to have to learn to use the Git version control software. (So far I prefer Mercurial, but Git seems to be more popular overall.) And, since I don't want to have to worry about accidentally sending the wrong files to GitHub, I'm going to have to use Git inside a VirtualBox. (I also prefer running Java inside a VirtualBox, which I hope is safer/more secure somehow.)

Fortunately, even my unrenovated Puppy Linux Setup Kit works well inside VirtualBox, and I have enough RAM to comfortably run even multiple VirtualBoxes if I want. So, this is all pretty feasible, even though I might just end up mostly reading and getting little else done again.


Additions, Dec. 27, 2016, 8;19 AM/8:37 AM/9:55 AM EST. Slept about 6 hours, and sort of want to go back to sleep. Still didn't have more ground flaxseed (warning) yet - and for a probiotic, only had that Bigelow lemon/ginger probiotic tea. But yesterday was still a much better day than the day before that.

Overall, that was probably one of my least unpleasant periods in a long time. Maybe my 2nd least bad period ever, a distant second to the aforementioned unexplained not-so-unpleasant one from when I was a teenager. I had a lot more energy (while it lasted) than I usually do during periods, though I still got tired rather early.

Still didn't get much done besides reading, and still haven't returned to health-related books.

I definitely seem to be improving overall, so, I don't think there's much else to say for now.


Additions, Jan. 4, 2017, 5:17 PM/6:02 PM EST/11:48 PM EST. Got a pretty bad headache yesterday. Not sure if it was related to the 3.25 ounces of chocolate hazelnut Piroulines I ate mostly on Dec. 28th (and some on Dec. 30th).

I think it might have been more related to lapsing into my old bad habit of neglecting to eat well enough due to being more interested in reading or programming than in preparing and eating food. Also, since Dec. 30th until yesterday, I skipped my daily two spoonfuls of flaxseed (warning) ground up with a coffee grinder.

Still mostly been having not-so-fun dreams. The most amusing one lately (today, in fact) was a nightmare in which I looked in the mirror and saw I had 4 extra boobs. :-)


Anyway, that headache was my worst problem lately. Other than that, I've been doing quite well.

And somehow my body has reverted to not having to have as much Vitamin C to avoid my gum's sore spots flaring up. I've been taking a minimum of 6 500 mg Vitamin C's per day, usually taken sometime in my "morning", plus usually one or more large doses later in my day, and/or just before sleep. But on a couple days recently, I only took six 500 mg Vitamin C's in my "morning", and I was fine.

Anyway, even though I could probably get by without taking so much, I think I might not ever go back to my former much smaller amounts, since overall, I've been doing much better, and I think Linus Pauling probably was right about huge amounts of Vitamin C being good.


Been trying to figure out Java programming. Managed to load VUE: Visual Understanding Environment into an Eclipse IDE project. And this old forum post helped by providing a .classpath file containing a list of unnecessary folders which you can configure Eclipse to ignore by using Eclipse's Resource Filters feature:

src/java15
src/oki/old
src/maclib
src/old
src/build

Actually, I probably still didn't set it up totally correctly, since I didn't yet bother to do anything with the rest of the .classpath file. But even so, VUE still compiles.

And I was able to use Eclipse's Javadoc feature to automatically generate informative pages like these, except probably more up to date.

I've been trying to figure out how to make VUE use the GTK "look and feel", so VUE will fit in better with my nice dark GTK desktop theme, unlike the annoying overly bright "Metal" "look and feel" which is a Java default.

I tried changing that a long time ago (maybe sometime in 2015 or even 2014), but somehow it caused VUE to freeze up and become unresponsive. But this time, it somehow mostly worked, except now the main window somehow is stuck in split-screen mode.

I guess I probably need to learn how to use Eclipse's debugging features. There's a variety of things I want to track down and fix (or modify). But even if all I manage to do is make the theme nicer to look at, that will make VUE tremendously more pleasant for me to use.


Additions, Jan. 6, 2017, 4:14 PM/4:28 PM/7:16 PM EST. Recently realized that maybe the reason I was craving tea again several days ago was maybe because of the caffeine I probably got from the chocolate in the chocolate hazelnut Piroulines. Also, I forgot to mention before that I felt like I was verging on a headache at times in the days leading up to my bad headache.

But now (and ever since Jan. 4th), I feel much better, and my craving for tea (which I successfully resisted) also went away.

Not sure yet what the maximum amount of caffeine I can consume without problems is, but I don't recall having any trouble with the medium-size caffeinated Barq's root beer I got from Burger King on Dec. 1st. Didn't even have a craving for tea.

I'm not really eager to continue to risk getting headaches, but it would be nice to know how much chocolate I can eat without problems.


Mostly been reading Clevnet books and didn't get much more done with the concept mapping software VUE: Visual Understanding Environment yet.

But, I decided I'm going to mostly use Mercurial to privately track my changes to VUE and make it easier to edit the source code on multiple computers. Then, when (or if) I'm ready to actually publish some changes, I'll add those changes to Git and GitHub.


Addition, Jan. 12, 2017, 4:33 AM EST. Had a bunch of good days (despite usually not consuming ground flaxseed (warning) and also neglecting to take as much Vitamin C) up until maybe the morning of Jan. 10th, then started feeling menstrual and moody.

But, I felt better after sleeping a while and having more ground flaxseed (warning) and Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels.

As usual when I'm getting premenstrual, my gums started to bother me a bit more again, though that has subsided again now that I've resumed larger amounts of Vitamin C.


I'm not doing as well as I was before the morning of Jan. 10th, but my mood has greatly improved, and I made some good progress with some of my projects later on Jan. 10th, and on Jan. 11th. Today, I'm feeling less on track and less well-focused, but at least I'm mostly not sad now and am feeling more optimistic again.

Still have been continuing (even on my best days) to avoid my public email and forums, though - same as usual, I guess. I don't know how long I'm going to keep feeling that way, but I guess even before I got possible adrenal fatigue, worsened hormonal issues, and/or possible PTSD, I was seldom really eager to deal with such things.


This "morning" (around 7 PM), I couldn't stand the idea of eating mostly just hard-boiled eggs for breakfast again, so, I mashed the eggs up with some mayonnaise, and had a sandwich. I only had one such sandwich, but it definitely seemed to help my energy levels (which already had been remarkably good up until recently), even though I was dubious about having carbs in the form of bread.

Guess I'm going to resume my daily 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning), since I feel like I might need it. Haven't felt like eating sunflower seeds, and I have no pumpkin seeds, so I didn't yet really try the seed rotation diet.


I ran across various pages like this one saying that ginger might boost testosterone. So, a while back, I added ginger to some Teeccino, and it makes the French Roast kind taste even better to me. I didn't like it so much in my usual favorite flavor, Pumpkin Spice, but it was still drinkable.

Not sure whether or not the ginger had any effects on my testosterone, but, I'm guessing it probably didn't hurt, and who knows, maybe it played a part in why I had a bunch of good days.

I think maybe I ought to try eating ginger even more frequently. But, ginger is so spicy-hot it's difficult for me to tolerate large amounts of ginger in my Teeccino, tea, or other food.

So, maybe the best way, or the most fun way, for me to increase my ginger consumption would be to figure out how to make ginger cookies, or something. That would probably be cheaper than buying already-made cookies, and also has a good chance of tasting much better.


Additions, Jan. 12, 2017, 5:15 AM/6:30 AM EST. Forgot to mention that I've increased my good habit of trying to exercise at random times, like when I'm alone in the kitchen waiting for my food to finish cooking, or when I'm watching TV, or using my computer on my standing desk.

I call it exercise since it's not artistic enough for me to call it bellydancing, even though some of the moves are inspired by bellydancing. Anyway, even just those few minutes of exercise here and there definitely seem to be having a good (though subtle) effect on my physique.

I think it might improve my mood, too, though I think longer, more strenuous exercise is probably more effective for that, judging by my results after going through most of the Learn Belly Dancing video routine. I probably should do stuff like that more often, but usually haven't since October.

I also sometimes have been sort of weightlifting, just by repeatedly lifting up my big heavy old box fan (which is still difficult for me). I just want to have a bit more muscle, so I don't have so much trouble lifting heavy objects, and also so I can effortlessly burn more calories. And hopefully it will also help increase my testosterone to whatever amount is healthy for a woman.


Addition, Jan. 12, 2017, 5:48 AM EST. Forgot to mention, no trouble with headaches lately. Still been totally avoiding caffeine in any form, including chocolate.


Additions, Jan. 13, 2017, 10:23 AM EST/2:04 PM EST. Been feeling closer to normal. Still not as energetic as before, but much improved. I love ground flaxseed (warning)!

I'd like to try to eat more sunflower seeds in the near future (even though I haven't really been in the mood for them for months), just because they're a suggested part of the seed rotation diet.

I doubt I'm going to ever strictly follow the seed rotation diet, because I really like ground flaxseed (warning)'s effects on me so far, and it seems like it helps me at any time of month. (Though I should probably mention again that some people have very bad reactions to flax.)

I wonder if the good effects on me are from the high amounts of Omega 3 in ground flaxseed (warning), or the lignans, or both? I'm guessing both.


Addition, Jan. 14, 2017, 3:29 AM EST. Had an unusual amount of trouble falling asleep yesterday - both magnesium and walnuts didn't work, so, I slept from around 6:50 PM (almost 24 hours after my previous wake time of around 7 PM) to about 2 AM. At least I made a lot of good progress with some of my projects - just nothing releasable yet.

And my slightly modified VUE is helping a lot too. It's already my most comfortable and somewhat HyperCard-like way to quickly and easily make my own nice-looking custom graphic user interfaces consisting of pictures or icons, nice backgrounds, text, and inconveniently tiny buttons. Unlike in HyperCard, those buttons can't yet be resized or styled, and aren't scriptable within VUE. But at least they can launch external scripts, programs, and web pages.

I'm also glad I finally figured out how to detach images from VUE bubbles, since now I can decorate my maps more nicely.

Among other things, I made some VUE maps about food (with pictures), to increase my appetite, remind me of what's here without me having to go to the kitchen or refrigerator to look, and to make it easier for me to decide what to eat, cook, or buy. Definitely nicer than relying on my memory, text lists, and/or web browsing for food-related ideas.

It's kind of luxurious, like having my own personal, customizable restaurant menu to choose from. Except I have to cook the food myself, at least until I someday create my own free (as in freedom), libre, open source robot chef. :-) Maybe I really will do that someday.


Addition, Jan. 14, 2017, 6:15 AM EST. I finally updated my Contact page and Request Free/Libre/Open Source Software or Documentation, or Ask Programming Questions page, and also linked the Non24.com and Non24.org contact pages to my Astroblahhh contact page, just to point out my current unavailability.

Hopefully someday I'll feel like dealing with that stuff again, maybe after I finish more of my own projects.


Addition, Jan. 15, 2017, 1:03 AM EST. Had an easier time falling asleep yesterday. Slept sometime between 3:02 PM and 10:49 PM. Lately, my salt cravings returned, and also sometimes the old frequent urination problem, but I'm doing much better now after resuming eating various salty snacks such as goldfish crackers and croutons.

And I finally also had some salty roasted sunflower seeds around 2 PM yesterday. I can't be sure exactly what those did for me, but, I definitely feel better today than much of yesterday.

I felt kind of scattered and anxious for much of yesterday (before sleeping), and continually hungry (probably simply because of mostly grazing on snacks rather than having good-sized meals), but now I feel more relaxed, and it's easier to focus. Feels like the effects of magnesium, so maybe it's from magnesium in the sunflower seeds (since I neglected to take Nature Made magnesium citrate).

And/or, perhaps sunflower seeds (a part of the seed rotation diet) really do have a good effect on hormonal issues. I guess I've just been kind of tired of them because a while back my family got 25 pounds of them, and lately, for a salty snack, I've been preferring goldfish crackers (which we also got 25 pounds of, but I'm still not even close to tired of them).

Anyway, I still like sunflower seeds, and I definitely don't really mind eating a few more of them, particularly if they turn out to reliably make me feel better and ease at least some of my hormonal issues.

Eating sunflower seeds is actually more fun than my usual way of eating ground flaxseed (warning) - which is more reminiscent of taking vitamins, since rather than putting ground flaxseed (warning) in my food, I just shovel two spoonfuls into my mouth and quickly wash it all down with water. :-)


Additions, Jan. 16, 2017, 3:56 AM/4:42 AM EST. Yesterday around 5 AM, I took another five Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels.

Been doing much better since then. I think Vitamin D might possibly be one of the very best things for my overall energy levels and mood that I've tried so far. I just wish I had a more precise idea of how much I need, and when.

For the past few weeks, I hadn't taken very much, and (unless I forgot to note some down), I only took 2 on Dec. 12th, 1 on Jan. 1st, and 5 on Dec. 30th, since I was trying to avoid possibly overdosing on Vitamin D, after having taken 4 or 5 almost every other day for a while around the beginning and middle of December, and varying amounts every several days around the end and middle of November.

I doubt I even got close to overdosing, judging by this page, but, I just figured I might as well err on the side of caution.

I wonder if maybe I had recently ended up somewhat Vitamin D deficient again because of taking it so infrequently. I guess I'll try taking it more frequently again for a while.


Addition, Jan. 17, 2017, 5:59 AM EST. On several days recently, my right eye was itchy and gooey (and sometimes bloodshot when I bothered to look in the mirror). But until yesterday, I was mostly oblivious to it, especially since those issues went away at times.

But yesterday, it got particularly bad, and I got a bit sneezy, slightly congested, and my right nostril ran a little. So, now I think maybe I have pink-eye (conjunctivitis), or a cold which has pink eye as a symptom. That might explain why it seemed like my gums' sore spots were getting more sensitive rather sooner than than I expected. My gums' sore spots getting more sensitive and needing a lot more Vitamin C to control that are premenstrual symptoms I've learned to expect. But it also seems like my gums' sore spots getting more sensitive sometimes is a clue that I'm getting a cold or something.

The day after I just happened to eat a whole raw tomato, my eye's pink-eye symptoms subsided enough that I assumed whatever the problem was (like maybe some small irritant in my eye like an eyelash or something), it was gone now. Then it recurred, so, yesterday, after reading that Vitamin A might be good for things like this, I ate another tomato, and today, though I'm still a bit sneezy, my eye is less gooey, not itchy, and less bloodshot.


It's a pity all my vitamins apparently don't make me totally immune to stuff like this. Oh, well. Not that I was expecting them to. But I'm guessing the vitamins have probably helped me, at least.

I wonder if I should have continued taking Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels instead of skipping them for a day yesterday.


Addition, Jan. 17, 2017, 12:59 PM EST. This morning, soon after writing the preceding, I took five Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels, my usual six 500mg Vitamin C's, my usual one 500mg Ovega 3, one 200 IU Vitamin E (which I've been taking on occasion for a while, but haven't been mentioning since I'm not sure what it's doing for me), a Nature Made Vitamin K2, and two Nature Made magnesium citrates.

A few hours later, I also had my usual 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning), partly because I started to feel close to a headache, and also because I hadn't had any yesterday despite feeling increasingly menstrual. Feeling better now.

My cold and/or pink-eye symptoms have been mostly gone so far today. The thing that most bothers me (but not very much, and only when flossing) is one of my gum's sore spots, which is a bit sensitive to floss. (It's my third sore spot, which was dormant for so long I forgot about it, but which is on the opposite side of the root canaled tooth that my usual lower left sore spot is to the left of. The other two sometimes sore spots are currently fine.)


Started out with very good energy levels today, but, since I didn't have any hard-boiled eggs made, I ended up starting the day by eating a lot of carbs, which I think made me a bit tired. (Or maybe it's the magnesium. But since Vitamin D seems to give me an energy boost, I was hoping the two might balance each other out.) Fortunately, I still had the energy and inclination to make a new batch of hard-boiled eggs, which I'll probably be eating in my "morning" for the next several days.

I'm guessing without all these vitamins, I probably would've gotten a far worse cold (or pink-eye or whatever this is - or was?), and also might have noticed sooner than I was getting it. But all the symptoms were usually so mild and ignorable (or attributable to something else) that it took me a while to even figure it out.

I'm guessing I might have done even better if I were more reliable about having my meals, vitamins, ground flaxseed (warning), and sunflower seeds. I'm usually fairly reliable about anything I regularly do in my "morning", but not as reliable about stuff I try to do later on. I probably ought to start using my Relative Scheduler more often again.


Addition, Jan. 18, 2017, 6:40 AM EST. Seems like my cold and/or pink-eye is already mostly gone. My right eye is only a little bloodshot now at the left side, and you have to look pretty closely to see it.

Not much else to say, I guess. Just been reading, and sometimes working on my Puppy Linux Setup Kit.


Days ago, I tried to compile a ton of stuff so I could try the libre Minecraft-like game Terasology in Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2.

Still didn't get to try it yet, since I needed to upgrade GCC: The GNU Compiler Collection, so I could try to upgrade to a newer graphics driver, which required me to upgrade Cmake so I could build LLVM, which turned out to be so huge I ran out of disk space.

So, in the end, I gave up, but at least now I know it's possible to upgrade to a newer GCC without switching to a whole new Puppy Linux. And now I have a Go compiler and even a Fortran compiler to play with. :-)


Addition, Jan. 18, 2017, 7:23 AM EST. It turns out that I like sandwiches composed of hard boiled eggs + mayonnaise + salt + black pepper enough to keep making them (and more importantly, keep eating them) frequently.

Larger hard-boiled eggs are more convenient, since I don't have to peel as many. And the larger eggs I boiled somehow turned out to be much easier to peel than the smaller ones.


Additions, Jan. 19, 2017, 7:29 AM/7:47 AM EST. Yesterday afternoon, got a slight headache, but it soon went away after I had Nature Made Stress B and some food (including sunflower seeds, in case my headache was related to PMS).

Hours later, I had a small coughing fit because of a tickle in my throat. Went to sleep around 10 PM and first woke around 4:43 AM, with a slightly stuffy nose. I also felt cold, so I actually turned my electric blanket on and went back to sleep for another couple few hours, and woke up feeling better. (But I'm going to keep mostly avoiding using my electric blanket except sometimes while awake, because it probably would interfere too much with my sleep quality.)

I guess my cold briefly came back probably partly because as usual, as I got more tired, I didn't stick to my routine as well and skipped or delayed meals and vitamins. But at least my pink-eye-like symptoms haven't come back so far.


Addition, Jan. 20, 2017, 4:24 AM EST. Had a headache again for a while before I went to sleep sometime after 9:17 PM. Slept only until around 2:21 AM, but my headache is gone now. Should've tried eating more sunflower seeds yesterday, but didn't. My only cold-like symptom is a slightly stuffy left nostril.

I feel like I'm getting into a slump again because of PMS, though ground flaxseed (warning) definitely seems to help for a while. Wonder what would happen if I ate more than two spoonfuls per day. Not sure yet if sunflower seeds help or not, but I didn't eat that many at a time yet. (Too tired of them to eat many of them.)

I guess I should return to those books on hormones, etc. But all I want to do is finish renovating my Puppy Linux Setup Kit. Not that I'm even close to finishing it.

Oh, well. At least my hormones are now wrecking fewer of my days than they used to. But I still wish I was born male instead of female.


Additions, Jan. 20, 2017, 4:39 AM/5:07 AM/5:45 AM EST. Actually, I probably shouldn't assume that being a man would definitely improve my life, since I've read (and probably seen firsthand) that men can have hormonal problems too, such as Irritable Male Syndrome.

Here's another page on that.


Addition, Jan. 20, 2017, 10:41 AM EST. Went to sleep again for a few more hours, and woke up feeling much better, and less unsatisfied with the mixture of advantages and disadvantages my body and gender impose on me.

And also decided to try to at least temporarily reduce my habit of storing notes in NoteCase, because I want to see how storing a lot more of my notes in my slightly modified version of VUE: Visual Understanding Environment turns out.


Additions, Jan. 21, 2017, 6:58 AM/7:24 AM EST. Yesterday, my pink-eye symptoms came back, but in my left eye instead. But my mood was much better, and I also had no headaches, though got close to a headache in the evening.

Still doing mostly well this morning. My right eye seems fine now, and my left eye has some leftover bloodshot and gunk (which I cleaned off), and is not really itchy now, and seems closer to normal today. My mood is very good and I'm still quite energetic, and was yesterday too. My time of the month seems imminent but nonetheless, I feel mostly fine.

I wonder if maybe I'd do best with at least a little Vitamin D daily, instead of having around five at a time every few days. I wonder if my body maybe uses up Vitamin D faster than average because of my besieged immune system, resulting from my chronic gum disease, which was maybe caused by my root canals? (Similar to how my body requires extra Vitamin C around my time of the month and other times of stress, or else one or more of my gums' 3 sometimes recurring sore spots - all next to one of my 3 root canals - get sore.)

Also got some new organic flaxseed (warning)s recently, so, my ground flaxseed (warning) now tastes different and fresher than the ground flaxseed (warning) I made from seeds that have been in my freezer for months. Maybe it's more nutritious and more effective at influencing my hormones for the better, too.

Figured out the biggest remaining obstacle to me using VUE: Visual Understanding Environment for most of my notes is not being able to press F5 to insert the current date and time. So, that's one of the next features I'm going to try to add to my slightly modified version of VUE.


Additions, Jan. 22, 2017, 9:10 AM/9:57 AM EST. Java (the programming language VUE is written in) is very frustrating, and it's even difficult to figure out how to format a date without crashing VUE. I guess I should try working on that outside of VUE, then once I get it working, add it to VUE.

Didn't try taking Vitamin D yesterday, just lots of Vitamin C. My cold is still lingering a bit, though my eyes are doing better. My left eye is less bloodshot, and my right eye has sometimes been a bit gooey, but not constantly.

I wonder if my immune system was stronger back when I was still drinking black tea, which is reputedly good for your immune system. If that's the case, that tempts me more than anything else to go back to drinking tea. (But less than I used to drink, of course.)

I think maybe I did more seldom get colds back when I drank tea. But I still got them on occasion, sometimes quite severe ones (worse than any I've had since quitting tea), so, I guess I shouldn't be that tempted.


Addition, Jan. 22, 2017, 1:37 PM EST. I'm especially glad now I didn't have tea, since I'm getting so tired now I think I should probably go back to sleep. Which might be both PMS and a cold symptom, but probably PMS, since I had pretty good energy before even despite my cold.

Most of my cold symptoms seem to be gone at the moment, and my eyes are mostly back to normal. Took two Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels earlier, among most of my usual other vitamins.

Ended up watching TV instead of struggling with Java programming. I hope I'll be able to get that done soon. I can already press F5 to insert new VUE bubbles, they just don't have the date/time in them yet. And also, I still need to figure out how to append text to an existing bubble's label. It's really close to done, and hopefully I'd finish it today if I weren't so sleepy.


Addition, Jan. 23, 2017, 5:47 PM EST. My cold still seems mostly gone, but, my right eye is a bit bloodshot. My time of the month started maybe around 2:50 PM, but as usual, one Advil eased my cramps.

Today, I managed to add some new improvements to my slightly modified version of VUE: Visual Understanding Environment. Everything other than making F5 insert the current date/time was pretty easy.

I'm looking forward to getting these glass straws because I'm sure they're probably healthier to use (and better for the environment) than plastic straws. Also, they're made in the USA. :-)


Addition, Jan. 25, 2017, 5:07 PM EST. Been doing pretty well, even though I only slept 3 1/2 hours because I was woken up by our dog barking (since my room was too cluttery for me to use my box fan to block noise).

Yesterday evening, had a slight headache and also some moodiness, perhaps because I had my usual 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning) later than I intended. But my timing was still pretty good, I think, because both the headache and moodiness lasted probably less than 20 minutes.

Been having two or three Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels per day, among my usual other vitamins. Seems to work well for me.


I'm very pleased with my my slightly modified version of VUE: Visual Understanding Environment.

I haven't switched to using VUE exclusively for all my notes, but, now I can much more easily find many of my notes, and they're much nicer to look at. And I can also much more easily find other things on my computer, thanks to VUE's ability to launch external programs and scripts.

This is having such a positive effect on my life (and my debilitating tendency to be disorganized) that it's comparable to Astroblahhh Desktop, which I've thought for years ought to have an optional VUE-like interface.

I'm much more comfortable using VUE now than I used to be - both because of my modifications, and because I now feel comfortable enough with XSLT (even though I still haven't finished the XSLT project I was writing about above a while back) that I don't feel at all anymore like my data is (somewhat) locked into VUE's XML format for concept map files, with no immediately plausible, relatively easy way to export or convert my data into useful other textual formats.

XSLT seems strange and verbose at first, but I suspect even using my favorite language, PHP, to try to somehow process XML procedurally and imperatively, without using XSLT (which is considered a declarative, functional programming language) would probably result in far more complicated, verbose scripts and might even require a lot more work and thought.


I'm also now interested in learning even more about Java programming and seeing what else I can do with VUE and other Java software.

And maybe I'll end up exploring my idea of using XSLT to convert portions of VUE maps into runnable source code. Maybe someday (but probably not in the near future) I'll figure out how to make VUE a bit more like Code Bubbles. Or even, a bit more like HyperCard.


I'm still trying to renovate my Puppy Linux Setup Kit, and also Astroblahhh Desktop. Also still been reading or glancing at a lot of Clevnet books.

So, there's plenty to keep me busy for a while.


Additions, Jan. 25, 2017, 6:10 PM/6:25 PM EST. I'm actually fairly satisfied now with my much improved energy levels, my much fewer and usually much milder headaches, and my milder other menstrual or premenstrual symptoms.

So, I'm not sure I'm going to have much that's on topic to add to this particular blog post for a while, unless (or until) I return to the aforementioned books on hormones and/or adrenal fatigue.

Definitely still not eager to return to dealing with anything stressful, so, I'm going to continue mostly focusing on my hobbies - especially reading and programming.


Additions, Jan. 29, 2017, 5:51 PM/6:11 PM EST. Had been doing fairly well (except I gave into the temptation to use my electric blanket for several days and ended up sleeping worse and getting increasingly tired). But I got a bad headache yesterday which came back today.

And today, when I curiously looked up ground flaxseed (warning) and headaches, I ran across a mention of cyanide here, so searched for flaxseed (warning) and cyanide, and ran across these other scary pages:

Ground flaxseed and cyanide
From Discuss.Huel.Com

Flax Meal & Cyanide
From Livestrong.com

However, there are lots of other things that might've caused my headaches, like sleeping poorly, eating poorly, hormonal issues, and/or maybe not taking enough magnesium. (I suspect my increased amounts of Vitamin D maybe are making me require more magnesium than I used to.)

I think I might actually be feeling a bit better after today's 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning), even though that didn't rid me of my headache yesterday. (My headache started before, not after, having ground flaxseed (warning), and my headache is actually what reminded me to try ground flaxseed (warning), since it seemed like ground flaxseed (warning) might have helped me with headaches before.)

Still, I'm soon going to add a warning link next to most every mention of ground flaxseed (warning). I'd be very surprised if ground flaxseed (warning) was doing me harm, since it seemed to me like it has probably been helping me, but who knows. At this point I think I'm most likely going to keep eating it sometimes, but probably not have such heaping spoonfuls anymore. And definitely am not going to have more than 2 spoonfuls a day.


Addition, Jan. 29, 2017, 7:08 PM EST. I had 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning) around 5:06 PM today, and I've been feeling better and less headachy, rather than worse.

So, personally, I don't feel too worried about ground flaxseed (warning), even though I will likely eat less of it in the future.


Addition, Jan. 30, 2017, 3:40 AM EST. Been doing better, though today I felt more tired and out of sorts than I did possibly throughout my entire time of the month. But I didn't feel capable of going back to sleep, so, had to stay awake. (Been awake since around 1 PM yesterday.)

Won't be using my electric blanket, since now it's unplugged.

Up until those headaches, I was making some progress on various projects (despite being more tired than I should have been, probably largely because of sleeping with my electric blanket). Also found I'm quite happy to use my slightly modified version of VUE: Visual Understanding Environment for most note-taking.

But, lost momentum ever since those headaches, my worst headaches in a while. Maybe being more tired than usual made them worse. Probably shouldn't have used my electric blanket. And also shouldn't be lazy about taking enough magnesium (except I think I really need to take it later on in my day, so it won't possibly make me tired in my "morning" and "afternoon").

At least I don't have a headache now, I'm just very tired.


Addition, Jan. 30, 2017, 1:40 PM/1:48 PM EST. Regarding ground flaxseed (warning) - I found a credible-looking page which says "A 1994 study found that, in healthy individuals, daily consumption of as much as 60 grams of raw flaxseed—more than eight tablespoons—was safe."

Q: I recently read that flaxseed contains cyanide. I have been consuming two to three tablespoons of ground flaxseed daily for several years. Should I be concerned? Does this quantity of flaxseed provide a clinically significant amount of cyanide?
From NutritionLetter.Tufts.Edu, Aug. 2011

Another interesting quote:

"Many foods, including not only flax but cashews, almonds, some beans and other plant products, naturally contain very small amounts of cyanide compounds. You’re more likely to ingest these trace amounts of cyanide when such foods are consumed raw, as heat breaks down the compounds. Even when flaxseed is eaten raw, the body has a natural capacity to break down a certain amount of these cyanide compounds."


Additions, Jan. 30, 2017, 2:37 PM/3:10 PM/3:58 PM EST. Slept much better today (and without my electric blanket), so I feel much better today. Might go back to sleep, though, because I only woke up so early (sometime before 11:49 AM) because some noise outside woke me up. So, I'm still a bit tired.

A couple weeks ago someone got me a wonderful faux (fake) fur robe by "Crofts & Barrow" from a thrift store. It's probably the softest, most comfortable thing I've ever owned, and it's so big (at least compared to me - I'm 5'4") I can even use it as a slightly undersized blanket. It's so warm it's sometimes actually too warm to wear.


Additions, Jan. 31, 2017, 1:05 AM EST. Ended up staying awake to update a relative's website, read, and do various other things.

Really relieved I recovered so quickly from the headaches and/or excessive tiredness of the other days.

Not much else to say here for now. Impatient to get things done, but unsure of what to work on next, but not really in the mood to publicly write about all the many possibilities.


Addition, Feb. 8, 2017, 2:05 AM EST. Here's an article about the many excellent benefits of Vitamin E:

Vitamin E Benefits, Foods, and Side Effects

Partly because of reading that, I've been taking Vitamin E more reliably lately.


On. Feb 6th, my cold symptoms and pink-eye-like symptoms recurred. I thought maybe it was from not sleeping well enough, so I decluttered my room again so I could run my box fan to block noise.

Been sleeping much better since then, and my cold and pink-eye symptoms soon went away again, and my gums' usual sometimes-recurring sore spots are absent. (Today, there's just one sensitive spot someplace which mostly hadn't bothered me since 2008, but maybe that was from accidentally flossing too hard.)

For several days sometime before cleaning my room, I switched to 4 Vitamin C's at a time instead of 6, but, I think I do better with 6, so I went back to 6 at a time.


I like my new glass drinking straws, plus the included cleaning brush, which has only been necessary at times when I didn't rinse the straws out soon after using them.


Been doing pretty well overall. Still been having ground flaxseed (warning) sometimes, but not daily, even though it still seems to help me. In any case, I really doubt it's harmful to me, so I might go back to having it more frequently. I don't think I'm having trouble with my hormones at the moment, so I don't need it for that reason at the moment, but, I like the fact that gives me more Omega 3 in my diet.


Speaking of Omega 3 - because Ovega 3's increasingly high price annoyed me (currently $30.99 for 60 capsules), I recently switched to Testa Omega 3 (currently $24.99 for 60 capsules), another vegan Omega 3.


Ovega 3's bottle says it has 500mg of Omega 3, with 270 DHA and 135 EPA.

Testa's box says it has ">450 mg" of Omega 3, with ">250 mg" DHA and ">125 mg" EPA.

Both containers have a footnote about the DHA and EPA quantities, which reads: "Minimum levels. Amounts may be higher than those indicated above."

I don't know how much the amount could vary, but, it looks like probably Ovega 3 is the one with more Omega 3.


I've always found Omega 3's effects on me subtle (maybe because I only take one capsule at a time) and don't really feel a difference if I skip it for a day. (As for ground flaxseed (warning), which does seem to make a quite noticeable difference when I'm menstrual or premenstrual - I still am not sure what in that affects me most, the lignans or the Omega 3. But I'm guessing they probably both help me.)

So, I can't really judge whether Ovega 3 or Testa might be better, since so far it seems like Ovega 3 and Testa's effect on me are about the same. No obvious effects. Though I suspect Omega 3 probably has had good long-term effects on me, or else I wouldn't keep taking it.

Maybe I ought to try taking more, but, sadly, both Ovega 3 and Testa contain carrageenan. If one of them didn't have carrageenan, I'd probably prefer that one, and also would feel more comfortable taking it more often. (Though I'm actually not sure if carrageenan really has any harmful effects on me.)

I really wish the makers of things like this would stop putting carrageenan in them. This annoys me so much that if I were rich, I would buy or start a vegan Omega 3 company just to make Omega 3 capsules exactly the way I want, and free of anything objectionable such as carrageenan. And I'd also make the price as low as I could possibly afford, to make it available to as many people as possible.


Addition, Feb. 14, 2017, 4:39 PM EST. No headaches lately, but my cold and pink-eye symptoms have repeatedly gone away (so completely I thought they were gone for good) and then come back.

I went back to taking 5 Vitamin D's at a time again to try to get rid of my cold, and have mostly been doing much better. Except I made the mistake of taking magnesium in my "morning" yesterday, and ended up tired all day and my cold worsened, but it seems mostly gone again now.


Been having a great Valentine's Day so far. I watched two romantic movies - Sharknado 3 and 4! :-)

And have been reading various books, including one which has an appropriate theme for Valentine's Day - The Psychology of Romantic Love, by Nathaniel Branden.

I've only read up to page 48 so far, but I'm enjoying it. It provides an interesting overview of the historical roots of the concept of romantic love, and how practical and unromantic many past societies were, and how freedom, the increasing equality of women, and even capitalism contributed to the evolution of our modern-day concepts of romantic love.


Addition, Feb. 16, 2017, 2:53 PM EST. Tried a new (to me) form of magnesium - Advanced MAGNESIUM (by InnovixLabs). Highly Bioavailable Bisglycinate + Malate Formula.

I think it really did help me sleep, but I think maybe I'd be better off taking only 1 capsule at a time instead of the suggested 2 per serving, because I woke up about 4 1/2 hours later with diarrhea. But, after a few hours awake (during which I got some useful things done), I managed to go back to sleep for 6 1/2 hours, more than I usually manage after having slept several hours already.

In the future, I'll try taking just 1 capsule before I intend to sleep, since I think 2 might've been a bit too much for me.

It definitely feels like an effective form of magnesium, with the usual positive effects, like making me feel calmer, and more capable of falling asleep.


Unfortunately, my cold and pink-eye symptoms recurred a bit again today. I keep wondering if my immune system was stronger when I was still drinking black tea, which I've read is good for your immune system.

Going to try red tea (rooibos) soon, partly because of its many benefits, and partly because I really like the taste. Happily, it's caffeine-free.


Addition, Feb. 23, 2017, 8:50 PM EST. I tried Celestial Seasonings Safari Spice and Celestial Seasonings Madagascar Vanilla red teas.

The Safari Spice has become one of my favorite herbal teas. The Madagascar Vanilla is OK, but like most vanilla teas I've ever had, it seems kind of bland. Adding some ground Ceylon cinnamon helps, but I'm mostly going to stick with Safari Spice.

(Addition, March 24, 2017, 8:42 PM EDT. Found the Madagascar Vanilla is improved by microwaving it for 5 minutes. I originally only microwaved it for 2 minutes.)


Since I last wrote, my lingering cold (which kept going away completely or almost completely, then repeatedly surprised me by coming back) with pink-eye symptoms got worse than ever before for a day or so. But I think maybe I finally got rid of it. The most recent newsletter of one of my favorite sci-fi/fantasy authors just happened to mention the idea of taking 1 gram of Vitamin C every hour to fight off a cold.

So, since I had never before tried taking Vitamin C quite that aggressively and reliably, I tried it, and it seemed like it really worked!

I didn't get any indigestion from taking so much Vitamin C - I just sometimes got a kind of heartburny feeling very soon after swallowing them, but drinking more water got rid of that quickly.


Other than my cold, I've mostly been doing pretty well. Didn't get any headaches. Started to get some PMS-related issues yesterday and today (bad mood and hot flashes), but as usual, ground flaxseed (warning) seemed to ease that.

Been taking five Walgreens Vitamin D3 Bone Health 2000 IU Softgels daily for a while. I hope that's not too much. I feel like it might be having a very good effect on my mood (even though PMS can still interfere with my mood if I don't eat ground flaxseed (warning) ), and it also seems like my gums haven't been acting up as much ever since I started taking so much Vitamin D, even at times when I'm lazy about taking Vitamin C.


It has already been getting so warm outside at times, like spring. I'm actually tempted to go outside with my laptop.

I'm finally mostly satisfied for now with my modified version of VUE: Visual Understanding Environment.

So, now I have to figure out what to work on next - which, fortunately, is even easier now thanks to VUE, which is now my favorite notetaking tool I've ever used.


Addition, Feb. 24, 2017, 4:41 PM EST. Seems like my pink eye came back slightly. My right eye is a bit bloodshot, gooey, and itchy. So, I guess I have to keep taking tons of Vitamin C, since maybe it wouldn't have come back if I had kept up the huge amounts. Also, my time of the month is approaching, which reliably seems to drive up my need for Vitamin C. (Around then, I have to take more, or else my gums act up.)

I wonder if drinking black tea again would help my immune system. Clearly something has been messing up my immune system lately, because I never used to have colds that lingered like this.


Addition, Feb. 24, 2017, 5:37 PM EST. Having black tea now - not a full mug, just a bit more than halfway full. Don't know if it will help or not, but, just thought I'd try it, since I think my electric blanket was probably much worse for my sleep quality than tea was, so, maybe the tea will somehow help me more than it harms. And perhaps if I only drink a limited amount, maybe I'll be able to avoid headaches. It probably isn't the best thing for my adrenals, but, whatever, I'm just going to try it.


Addition, Feb. 24, 2017, 9:14 PM EST. Caffeine definitely seems to have a mood-improving effect on me, in addition to making me feel more energetic for a while. It also makes me feel less hungry, which is nice, though I guess it might be better to just eat more, rather than suppress my appetite.

Anyway, I still prefer the taste of Teeccino or Celestial Seasonings Safari Spice red tea, so, I don't expect to have trouble refraining from having black tea daily.

Don't know how much black tea I would need to maximize its immune system-boosting effects, but, I suspect my former daily amount (around 16 ounces, and also around 12 or 10 ounces in the more distant past) maybe really was doing my immune system good.

But I'm hoping less than that will help, since I don't really want to go back to drinking that much black tea daily. Don't want to give my adrenals a hard time, and don't want to get headaches. But if I can handle small amounts without problems, I guess, why not drink it?


Someone I know suggested decaffeinated black tea instead. But I was dubious about that because I remember hearing somewhere that some methods of decaffeination might be unhealthy. And I seldom like the taste of most decaffeinated black tea.

But, according to this page, safe methods exist, so, maybe I ought to try black tea decaffeinated with the "carbon dioxide" method that page mentions. Preferably, grown and made in the USA.


Found a page about a research study which (paraphrased) says decaffeinated green tea is good for the immune systems of rainbow trout. :-) Even though I'm not a rainbow trout, I find that encouraging. :-)

Found some very expensive organic green tea grown in the USA (Hawaii), but it doesn't appear to be decaffeinated. Oh, well.


Found this page which says green tea might actually be bad for some people's immune systems. Not sure that applies to me.

This page suggests that out of black, green, or white tea, that white tea is healthiest.

This other page also seems to favor white tea.


Found some incredibly expensive organic white tea grown in Michigan. I wonder how many cups you can make with the smaller, less expensive packages.

I think I tried a Celestial Seasonings white tea a long time ago. It was OK, but I preferred the taste of black tea. Usually didn't like green tea very much either. (Red tea isn't the same plant species, but I like red tea more than white and green tea, too.)

So, hopefully black tea's and red tea's health benefits are good enough.


Addition, Feb. 25, 2017, 2:55 PM EST. I think maybe the tea caused me to stay awake maybe somewhat longer than I otherwise would have. And the longer I was awake, the worse my cold got. And I pretty much gave up on taking so much Vitamin C, since I was tired and just didn't feel like taking vitamins anymore. Drank some orange juice instead.

Then my cold improved when I slept, though I only slept for about 5 hours. And I feel more awake and alert than I usually have at the start of my "morning" lately, so, I suspect the caffeine might still be affecting me to some extent. But it doesn't feel bad - it feels familiar and more "normal". Except maybe I am starting to verge on a headache already. Maybe even a bit more than half of a 17 ounce mug was a bit too much for me.

Not sure if the tea did much for my immune system yet. Maybe I'll have more today already (but probably less than I did yesterday), even though I know the more I have, the more I'm risking headaches and perhaps worsened sleep too. But my so-called schedule never straightened itself out while I did without caffeine, so at least I'm not concerned about it making my schedule more unpredictable.

I think I should probably eat some "breakfast" before I have tea, though, because tea definitely suppresses my appetite. (Yesterday, my appetite started coming back about 4 hours after I had tea.)

Soon after writing the above, had some cottage cheese (spiced up a bit with black pepper), since even when I don't have caffeine, it seems to really help my energy levels in my "morning",


Addition, Feb. 25, 2017, 9:54 PM EST. Ended up having more tea than I originally intended, since I thoughtlessly poured in more half-and-half than I meant to, and didn't want to waste it.

Interestingly, rather than reducing my vague verging-on-a-headache feeling, having more tea actually seemed to increase it a bit. But I still felt mostly OK, energetic, and in a good mood. The headache hasn't gotten really bad so far (and actually went away by the time I finished writing all these paragraphs). But, I feel pretty certain now that a lot of my past headaches were indeed related to caffeine.

Probably should have had ground flaxseed (warning) today for my hormones, just in case that headache was at least partly hormonal, and also because I felt a bit feverish, which either was hot flashes or maybe an actual fever. (Didn't take my temperature.)

Fortunately, my cold symptoms have decreased all the time I've been awake, and my gums have been mostly behaving, even though I only took my usual 6 Vitamin C's in my "morning", then nothing more until about an hour ago, when I took 4 more. I also didn't take my usual "morning" vitamins other than vegan Omega 3 and Vitamin C, just to change up my routine a bit. (Finally took most of them recently, along with my Vitamin C.)


Now that the tea's more obvious effects have mostly worn off, though, I feel like I'm kind of in a slump, which also happened yesterday. Though it's much less of a slump now that my headache has faded. Actually, now, I'm just tired. But in an increasingly good mood, perhaps because my Vitamin D has started to take effect. :-)

I definitely like the tea highs, but sure didn't miss the lows. Of course, since my time of the month is so close, some of this could just be hormonal issues, especially since I neglected to eat ground flaxseed (warning). Also, I should've slept longer.

Might or might not have more tea tomorrow, but will probably try much harder to avoid having so much. Perhaps there's some ideal amount I can have which will give me mostly benefits and few drawbacks.


I do suspect the black tea has maybe already done my immune system some good, as it's reputedly capable of doing. Maybe that partially explains why I used to be able get by taking a lot less Vitamin C for my gums, and why colds seldom troubled me for long (even before I started taking a lot of Vitamin C), even though I've had 3 root canaled teeth in my mouth since 2006.

Maybe I should find a decaffeinated tea I like, made with safe methods, and drink that regularly so I can get some immune system benefits, and avoid problems from caffeine. (Except decaf is reputed to still contain a small amount of caffeine, but I think I can probably handle that.)

Trying white tea again (which might be healthier than green and black teas) also seems like probably a good idea. At least I like the taste more than green tea. And non-decaffeinated white tea is reputed to have less caffeine than other teas.


Addition, Feb. 26, 2017, 2:21 PM EST. Got about 7 hours of sleep. Woke up thirsty and with a faintly clogged left nostril, but I mostly have been fine and my eyes are less bloodshot. Not feeling as alert as yesterday "morning", which could be hormonal, I guess. I feel like I could maybe go back to sleep.

Returned to my usual vitamin routine today. Except I have been skipping magnesium lately, since it seemed like it was making me feel too tired, and I got the impression that when it made me tired, I became more vulnerable to my cold recurring.

Guess I'll probably continue with my usual black tea sometime soon, unless I go back to sleep. No headache today so far.


Additions, Feb. 27, 2017, 4:08 PM/4:25 PM EST. My time of the month started. I feel like I might either have a fever, or else just hot flashes.

Stayed awake yesterday, but didn't have tea, and started to get a headache around maybe 10 PM or 12 AM or something (was too busy to pay attention to the time). That faded and returned throughout the night and morning, though my cold symptoms stayed pretty mild. Around 5:30 AM I tried having a bit more tea to ease the headache, but it only helped a little.

Finally went to sleep around almost 10 AM after taking this magnesium. But, I think I'm going to stop taking that kind at all, because I think it's a lot stronger than I need, even if I only take one (as I did today). In the past, I even have felt strong effects from supposedly "poorly-absorbed" magnesium oxide, So, maybe I'm actually better off with magnesium oxide so I can't absorb too much.


No headache at the moment, but, I feel like one might be close. And, probably partly because of only sleeping 4 hours so far, I felt quite sluggish and tired when I woke up, and woke up with a somewhat clogged right nostril, and also a vaguely dizzy feeling which I've sometimes had in the past several days (I think even sometimes before trying black tea).

But my cold hasn't recurred as badly as it did those days it got the worst, since my eyes aren't gooey and itchy again, or at least not yet. And, I'm already starting to feel better (perhaps partly because my usual "morning" Vitamin C.)

So, other than giving me headaches and interfering with my sleep (which is probably not good for my immune system), I have had the impression that black tea might really be helping my immune system .

I mostly neglected Vitamin C yesterday (which probably wasn't a good idea, but if I had kept taking huge amounts, it would have been harder for me to judge if the tea was helping, or just the huge amounts of Vitamin C).

All I had was my usual six 500 mg of Vitamin C in my "morning", but surprisingly, my gums handled the lack of any more than that later on in my day much better than I expected. There was only one sore spot acting up, the one on the lower left (to the right of my leftmost root canal) that is usually dormant.


Going to resume larger amounts of Vitamin C, and probably keep drinking more orange juice than usual (which I sometimes have had a craving for, though I didn't drink any yesterday).

And, even though it only took about two days for me to get readdicted to black tea to the point of getting worse headaches than I have had in probably months, I guess I'll try to adjust to it and keep having a little sometimes to try to avert the headaches, and see if I can find an amount that still has benefits but doesn't so easily lead to headaches. (An almost full 17 ounce mug was definitely too much for me. I think I used to handle it better, but I guess now my body isn't accustomed to caffeine anymore.)

I hope I can find an acceptable organic tea decaffeinated with the carbon dioxide method, and grown and made in the USA. I guess second best might be an organic, grown and made in the USA, still-caffeinated white tea or green tea. At least white and green tea are thought to usually have less caffeine than black tea, in addition to possibly being healthier overall.


I have a slight headache already, so, I guess I'll see if a bit of tea helps. Interestingly, the headache has been worse than my menstrual cramps so far. Haven't had bad cramps yet, which seems unusual.

Neglected to have ground flaxseed (warning) recently, so my cramps' reduction wasn't from eating that. Perhaps it was from eating carrots yesterday, along with MSG-free Litehouse brand ranch dressing (which has a surprisingly high amount of Omega 3, though I don't know why that's not mentioned on their website. My jar's label says there's "1090 mg ALA Omega 3 per serving", and a serving is 2 tablespoons).

I feel like I might actually be able to do without a painkiller, though I might take one preemptively anyway, just in case.


Addition, Feb. 28, 2017, 4:02 PM EST. Yesterday, stayed awake and took an Advil, since I started to feel like I might need it for cramps. Avoided having any more tea, and was relieved that I didn't feel headachy or close to a headache, even after my Advil probably wore off. Didn't get cramps, either.

And, my cold symptoms were mostly gone. My eyes were and still are a bit bloodshot, though.

Today, I slept from around 5:30 AM to about 3:13 PM, and woke up with a slight headache, but still don't feel like I have a cold. I still feel tired, but that could be from my time of the month.


Definitely not eager to keep growing my caffeine addiction. I was quite surprised I got headaches so soon.

But, on the other hand, I really think tea might really be helping my immune system, and might be a large part of why I did as well as I did in the past, despite having three root canaled teeth in my mouth ever since 2006.

So, compromising a bit and resuming a little tea-drinking seems logical to me, since I think maybe the headaches bother me less than the weirdness (for me) of having a recurrent cold that kept going away then coming back repeatedly for over a month. (Perhaps something similar was going on with me in October and November, too.)

And the idea of going back to drinking a bit of tea to try to help my immune system is definitely less scary than the idea of getting three root canaled teeth extracted, just in the hope that it might make life easier for my besieged immune system. (What if that wouldn't work - what if all I got for going to all that trouble was three less teeth to chew with?)

So, I'm officially not 100% quitting tea anymore, since I now plan on drinking some amount of some kind of tea(s) on occasion. Just not sure exactly how much and how often (except probably not daily), and I'll probably end up trying a variety of different kinds, preferably with less caffeine than the average black tea, and preferably all grown and made in the USA.


Ideally, I'd like to find a decaffeinated white tea grown in the USA, decaffeinated with probably the carbon dioxide method. (A method which I haven't read in detail about, but which I'm just assuming and hoping is safe, since carbon dioxide is everywhere, we breathe it all the time, and it's actually produced by breathing. But I know hardly anything about chemistry, so, please don't blindly assume I have the right ideas here. Even I try to avoid assuming I'm always right.)

Alas, my ideal tea might currently be nonexistent. So, instead, I'm going to try this caffeinated green tea grown in South Carolina. Even though it's caffeinated, at least it will probably contain less caffeine than my formerly usual black tea. And green tea might be healthier than black tea.

Also, I was pleased to read on the Charleston Tea Plantation's Environmental Commitment page:

"We do NOT use any pesticides (herbicides, fungicides and insecticides)!"


So, I guess now that I'm definitely no longer quitting tea (Camellia sinensis), my blog post's title - "Still trying to quit tea; hoping quitting will reduce my headaches" - is now inaccurate.

Perhaps I ought to start a new blog post to add updates to, especially since this one got quite long.


Addition, March 1, 2017, 3:07 AM EST. Soon got too tired to do much of anything, so, since I continued avoiding tea, I managed to sleep sometime between 7:38 PM and 12:21 AM. Feeling much better now.

Might try to avoid more tea until I get some of this caffeinated green tea grown in South Carolina.


Addition, March 3, 2017, 12:35 AM EST. Have felt cold-free even though I avoided all tea (except red tea, which has no caffeine and isn't the same plant species) until around 8 PM earlier this evening, when I finally got to try this caffeinated green tea grown in South Carolina.

I've never tried many green teas, but, I think this is probably the best green tea I've ever had. It has a pretty mild flavor and only mild mintiness. I also brewed a second cup with the same tea bag, and the flavor is even weaker, but I'm still content to drink it.

Happily, it also definitely feels like less caffeine than my usual black tea. It feels like a mostly full 17 ounce mug of this stuff gives me much less of a caffeine jolt than even around half a mug of my formerly usual black tea (PG Tips). I wouldn't even describe it as a jolt, because it just feels mildly stimulating.

So, I'm very happy with this tea. It's too soon for me to know if this probably smaller amount of caffeine might eventually result in headaches, but, so far, I'm fine.


Addition, March 4, 2017, 3:47 AM EST. Slept sometime between 8:18 AM and 4:04 PM, and woke up with a slightly clogged left nostril, but it soon went away.

Before I resumed having tea on March 2, I was wondering if maybe my cold might be close to recurring, since my gums seemed to be acting up a bit more again. So, my cold slightly recurring wasn't totally unexpected, but, I was hoping the tea might totally avert any recurrence. Anyway, who knows, maybe the tea did help stop it from getting any worse than that.

Haven't had any trouble with headaches. My original plan on March 3rd was to avoid drinking more tea for a while, just to see how long it might take for me to get a caffeine withdrawal headache, if I got one at all. But, after waking up with that slight congestion, I decided I'd rather keep trying to suppress my cold, so I eventually had another cup of this caffeinated green tea grown in South Carolina around 11:30 PM on March 3rd.

Also had a cup of red tea, and reused my green tea bag in that. It was still good, but I think I prefer them separate.

Whatever amount of caffeine is in this caffeinated green tea grown in South Carolina feels almost unnoticeable to me, which, for me, is a very good thing. Because of that, perhaps drinking it daily might be feasible for me.


Addition, March 4, 2017, 11:44 PM EST. Found a useful article titled Hack Your Tea - How To Get 5 Times More Out Of A Cup Of Green Tea.

So, today, I tried microwaving my mug for 4 minutes instead of 2. The taste got stronger, and it feels like the caffeine did too, making my last cup of green tea a lot more similar to my last cup of black tea (though probably still not quite that strong). Still tasted great, and hopefully is more healthy, even though I probably got more caffeine out of it than is ideal for me.

Woke up today still feeling tired (and very thirsty again) after sleeping from around 11 AM to 6 PM. (Had woken up tired and very thirsty on other days too, but, mostly blamed my time of the month for the tiredness.) Also had slight congestion again, but that went away quickly.

This last cup of green tea (which I guess I had around maybe 8 PM) gave me a lot more energy than the other two did. Going to spend some time cleaning the most disorganized room in the house, partly in the hope that getting more exercise will give me more energy and hopefully somehow make me less prone to fatigue.

Maybe I should go back to brewing the tea my usual way,so I'll end up with a weaker cup of tea. Anyway, still no headaches.

Hmm, actually, I guess I'm already getting tired again. But, I guess I'll try to get some cleaning done anyway.

I don't like being fatigued again, but, I think I prefer it to having a cold that kept coming back repeatedly for over a month. Other than waking up with a bit of congestion, I've been fine, cold-wise.


Addition, March 5, 2017, 2:41 AM EST. I think I did have too much caffeine, since I've been feeling anxious. So, I'll just make my tea the usual way in the future, and maybe should try to avoid having it daily.

Addition, 6:04 AM EST. Seems like physical activity does make me a bit less tired. I made some reasonable progress moving a junk mountain that was taller than I am. Then, I took what might have been my first shower since 2016. :-)

There's still a ton left to do, but, I look forward to having a useable nearby room where I can keep my bike, which I want to convert into an exercise bike.


Addition, March 5, 2017, 9:37 PM EST. Slept between around 10 AM and 7:30 PM. Almost slept longer, but I had my noise-blocking box fan off and our dog started barking.

I guess I'm doing OK. No congestion. Before I went to sleep, my left eye got a bit gooey, but hopefully that was only because I got a bit of water in it when I took a shower.

Got a headache while I was sleeping. I managed to mostly keep sleeping, and it's mostly gone now, but it sometimes still feels close to restarting.


Feeling more rested today, even though I started out feeling like I wanted to go back to sleep. (But, I just couldn't fall back asleep, despite trying after turning my box fan on.) I took one Nature Made magnesium oxide after I started getting anxious (early on March 5th), and I think it probably helped, without being too overpowering, and might also have helped me sleep better.

Magnesium oxide seems to have a reputation for being relatively poorly absorbed, but I think maybe I absorb the other kinds too well. And I've noticed for many years that usually even just 1 magnesium oxide feels like it has calming effects on me, which can even make me tired if I'm not well-rested enough.


I'm actually wondering if maybe the possible benefits of tea might outweigh the drawbacks. I suspect tea's immune system-boosting effects maybe must be pretty potent, for my cold to still be mostly held at bay even despite me having been tired a lot lately, and even without me taking a gram of Vitamin C every hour.

Another thing tea might've done for me was, it might have helped me effortlessly stay thinner. I haven't gotten fat since quitting tea, but I did gain some weight. Now my 34G bras don't fit as well anymore, wahhh! :-) Why must life be so hard? :-)

So, that's another thing that tempts me to keep drinking green tea, brewed strong instead of weak. Here's an article which says green tea boosts your metabolism.

I never regularly drank green tea, but even just black tea seemed like it made it easier for me to stay thinner (maybe partly because it seemed to suppress my appetite for a while). I never had to work at staying thin before and seldom tried to, though I probably should have exercised more anyway, because exercise is so healthy and seems to make me feel better almost anytime I bother with it.


Addition, March 7, 2017, 4:23 AM EST. Slept sometime between 12:13 PM and 7:15 PM, then sometime between 10:17 PM and 3:41 AM since I still felt tired. Feeling much more rested now than I did when I woke up around 7:15 PM.

Been feeling probably cold-free, but, woke up briefly and unpleasantly around 1:46 PM because my last Nature Made magnesium oxide seemed to have the same result for me as two capsules (a single serving) of this magnesium - diarrhea.

So, maybe that means I'm actually not even close to magnesium deficient, since this article says "too much oral magnesium will result in diarrhea." I only took one 250 mg Nature Made magnesium oxide around 11 AM on March 6th, and one around 2:45 AM on March 5th, then this happened.

So, I guess I'll resume not even bothering with magnesium for a while. Lately, it seems like I need it less, only every once in a while. Didn't even get anxious after my last tea, but took magnesium anyway just in case - a mistake I'll try to avoid in the future.


Had another nearly full mug of green tea around 2:30 AM on March 6th. Still got slightly headachy in the hours after that, but, that went away and I've been fine since then.

I think maybe I'll be better off just getting reaccustomed to tea and caffeine, and being careful to drink it regularly. I'm hoping I'll be able to handle it better now than I did in the past, because I still suspect my electric blanket was even worse for me and my sleep quality than caffeine, and I'm no longer using my electric blanket at all.

Looking forward to trying the full leaf loose version of this excellent caffeinated green tea grown in South Carolina whenever it arrives. (Correction, March 9, 2017, 1:10 PM EST. Despite what the Amazon description said, the leaves are shredded, not full. But, I still look forward to trying it.)


Addition, March 7, 2017, 6:25 AM EST. Seems like the extra sleep really helped. Been feeling much better today. Currently having tea, and thinking over what to work on next.

Another thing I like about microwaving my tea for 4 minutes instead of 2 is, it stays adequately hot for a while even after I put in honey, sucanat, and half-and-half.


Addition, March 7, 2017, 11:54 PM EST. Nothing much to add. No headaches so far. Got increasingly sleepy after about 3 PM, but then only slept from sometime between 6:30 PM and 10:30 PM. Kept waking up very thirsty, as usual. But, still feeling cold-free, and actually felt unusually eager (after so little sleep) to get up and do something.

Maybe once I start exercising more after I get the next room cleaned up, maybe that will somehow improve my sleep. I think I tend to sleep best after I get exhausted.

Definitely no intention (at least for now) of quitting tea again. I think I just feel much better with it than without it. I actually feel happier and more back to normal.


Addition, March 9, 2017, 3:12 AM EST. No headaches so far, and have been feeling fine. March 8th, got a lot more exercise than usual cleaning a room which has almost never been cleaned in nearly 15 years. There's still a mountain of junk, but, it's gradually being sorted and boxed.

After cleaning, I ended up binge-watching Netflix (Luke Cage) and looking at Clevnet books, so that kept me awake despite my sleepiness.

Then, there finally was a power outage for the first time in quite a while, starting maybe around 6:35 PM and ending around 7:04 PM (if I recall correctly). So, since I still haven't gotten around to adequately updating my Puppy Linux Setup Kit, that was more of a nuisance than it otherwise would have been, also because due to the cold weather, I've been using my desktops more than my laptops.

I was too tired to deal with it and just went to sleep maybe around 8 PM, without even plugging my computer stuff back in. Woke up around maybe 1:10 AM or something.

So... I guess one of my top priorities, besides cleaning the next room, ought to be to work on my Puppy Linux Setup Kit, so I can more easily get back useful new things I haven't yet added to my setup kit, like Pale Moon, Saxon/C, Schematron, my modified version of VUE, and updated components of Astroblahhh GLMP-GTK.

Or, I could try to get more sleep. But, not sure I feel tired enough anymore. Or actually, maybe I do.


Addition, March 10, 2017, 4:40 AM EST. Slept sometime between around 6:42 AM and 11:06 AM on March 9th, and 9:52 PM (March 9th) and 3:58 AM (March 10th).

Had tea around 2 PM (March 9th), when I started to feel like I might get a headache if I didn't have tea. Managed to avert that.

Tried the loose version of this excellent caffeinated green tea grown in South Carolina. The only thing disappointing about it was it was made up of shredded leaves rather than full leaves (unlike what the Amazon description said).


I ripped open one of the pre-packaged tea bags from the box I got before so I could measure how much tea was in there, so I could get an idea of how much of the loose tea I should put in my own paper teabags. I accidentally spilled some of the tea bag I ripped open, but using my measuring spoons, it looked like that teabag contained close to (or maybe actually) 1 tablespoon. (I set the unspilled tea aside for later in a ziploc.)

In my own paper teabag, I experimentally put somewhat less than a tablespoon. Probably since I used less than what is in a pre-packaged teabag, it turned out weaker than my usual cups, but other than that, it tasted the same to me.

I like the convenience of the pre-packaged teabags, but, I also like the easier customizability and possibly lower cost of loose tea. Might be fun to mix different loose teas together.


I wish I was sleeping better. But, I think lately maybe it's thirst rather than caffeine that might be interfering most with my sleep.

Maybe I should go back to drinking slightly salted water, not just for a possible adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance, but because it tastes better to me, so maybe I'll be more likely to drink enough water before I sleep to avoid getting so thirsty when I sleep that it wakes me up.


Addition, March 10, 2017, 5:36 AM EST. Overall, though, I feel much better lately. I feel cold-free, and even my libido has improved lately.

I did wake up feeling tired again, but, as usual, that tiredness has already decreased, even without drinking tea. I've only had water (unsalted, actually) and my usual vitamins so far.


Addition, March 11, 2017, 8:42 AM EST. Kept waking up very thirsty, but I managed to sleep longer than usual today, sometime between 8:19 PM and 7:32 AM. (Was awake from around 3 to 3:30 AM noting down some dreams.)

Feeling pretty rested today. No headaches since I last wrote except one when I first woke up thirsty, but it quickly went away when I drank some water.

Was too tired (and thus lazy) before sleep to prepare some slightly salted water, but certainly will today. It's supposed to be good for adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance, which maybe I still have.


Addition, March 11, 2017, 1:46 PM EST. I figured out that to make a mug of the loose version of this excellent caffeinated green tea grown in South Carolina which tastes about as strong to me as the already-bagged version, I need about 1 tablespoon of loose tea, and must microwave my 17 ounce mug for 5 minutes instead of 4 minutes.

I'm guessing this is because my paper teabags have a different shape than the pyramid-shaped teabags used in the already-bagged version.


Addition, March 12, 2017, 11:58 AM EDT. Drank some slightly salted water before sleep, and slept sometime between 4:29 AM and 10:40 AM, maybe without waking much (or at all?) until 10:40 AM, at which point I woke up thirsty, but maybe a bit less thirsty than usual. So, going to stick with drinking slightly salted water, except on those rare occasions when sometimes I like unsalted water more.

Another reason I like loose tea is because if I ever decide to decrease my tea intake again, it'll be easier to do that with loose tea than with pre-packaged tea bags.


Yesterday, I finally switched over to using Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2 on every computer. That will simplify updating my Puppy Linux Setup Kit.


Addition, March 12, 2017, 12:27 PM EDT. Maybe the pre-packaged tea bags are better for me after all, because I had a tougher time brewing as strong a cup when I put the loose tea in a paper teabag, and I had some faint possible cold symptoms earlier, like slight congestion and slightly gooey/itchy eyes.

Also, my energy hasn't been lasting as long as I'd like lately.

I guess I'll go back to pre-packaged tea bags and see if that helps.


Addition, March 12, 2017, 1:20 PM EDT. Yeah, I think I will use the pre-packaged tea bags in the future. It's more convenient, takes less time to brew, and maybe even does taste a bit better.

And I suspect now that maybe my paper teabags weren't letting all the healthy substances (or flavor) in the tea out of the teabag as well as the pre-bagged tea's pyramid-shaped non-paper mesh or net. Not sure what it's made of (maybe nylon?), but whatever it is, it seems to work well.

Addition, 1:26 PM EDT. Just found this worrying article on nylon tea bags. But, I refuse to worry about everything, so, I'm going to keep drinking it anyway.

Addition, 1:33 PM EDT. And here's another worrying article which I probably won't do more than skim until after I'm finished with my tea.

Addition, 1:35 PM EDT. Just noticed my tea box says "The Charleston Tea Plantation is pleased to share the fact that this box, woven mesh pyramid bag, string and tag are made from sustainable (renewable) resources and are 100% biodegradable." OK, that's comforting. :-)


Addition, March 13, 2017, 1:45 PM EDT. Alas, my cold (or whatever it is) came back AGAIN. My right eye has been gooey since yesterday.

Maybe it's because I've been eating too poorly or sleeping too poorly lately (or both).

Oh, well. Anyway, I guess I'll try some more ground flaxseed (warning), because maybe my hormones are acting up and making me overly negative and cynical about my chances of ever recovering from all my ailments. It seemed to help yesterday.


Addition, 3:08 PM EDT. Already feeling better, emotionally and physically. My eye got less gooey within about 15 minutes of writing the above. (Still isn't totally back to normal, though.)

Had green tea, two spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning), and a bowl of cereal.


Addition, 7:02 PM EDT. Wonder if packaged already-ground flaxseed (warning) doesn't work as well. I always preferred grinding my own flaxseeds (warning), but tried a bag of already-ground flaxseed (warning) yesterday and today.

Anyway, today, I felt better for a while, but my mood went to heck again. Almost went to sleep again earlier but had to stay awake for something.

Anyway, I'll see if things improve over the next few days, and if not, maybe I'll quit tea - again. Or at least reduce it a lot, maybe.


Addition, March 14, 2017, 10:31 AM EDT. Feeling better, so, if this keeps up, might as well stick with drinking tea in mostly non-paper tea bags. (But maybe some kinds of paper work OK, since I think my formerly usual black tea might have helped my immune system despite being in paper teabags.)

But, I probably will go back to grinding my own flaxseeds, (warning), since I suspect freshly ground flaxseed (warning) works much better on me than the packaged already-ground flaxseed (warning).


Quite some mood swings yesterday. I was so stressed out, I suddenly began craving to play some old video games. So, since I still have a lot of my old game console stuff, I set some of that up, and indeed, gaming a bit was relaxing.

Before that, had been spending many hours (too many?) trying to design a way to do some sort of visual programming with my modified version of VUE: Visual Understanding Environment, using XSLT to extract data from VUE maps (which are in XML format) and transform it into useable scripts.

I'm hoping that if I get somewhere with that, it might make my future programming much easier. multifiles-apmod.el helps a lot, but I think being able to use VUE to edit code might turn out to be better than even that.


Addition, March 15, 2017, 2:24 PM EDT. Still feeling fine and cold-free today. To my surprise, even since before I had tea today, I've felt alert and like I have a lot of energy for anything I might want to do. When I first woke up, I was tired and wanted to go back to sleep, but, that feeling soon went away, hours before tea.

Today, I tried the plain, non-mint version of this excellent green tea grown in South Carolina. It's good, and tastes pretty similar to the mint version, but, I like the mint version more.

Mostly been playing video games so far today. Hopefully I'll soon feel like returning to cleaning, and doing stuff with XSLT.


Addition, March 15, 2017, 8:08 PM EDT. My mood started to worsen about a half hour after my previous addition - and about 26 hours after my last 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning) - so, I had two more, and soon felt better.

Felt a bit tired after eating some ginger snaps, but that passed, and I managed to clean up some of the mess that has gradually reaccumulated in my room.

I'm amazed at how much better and back to normal I feel overall. I was so worried when my cold recurred, and when I kept feeling tired, and sometimes had trouble sleeping. I was afraid I might never get this much better again, that maybe caffeine was worsening my possible adrenal fatigue again, and wearing me down so much that maybe whatever boost my immune system might have been getting from tea was being negated.

But now, I feel like I'll probably be OK. But, I'm going to continue to be careful, take it easy, and avoid stressful things.


Addition, March 16, 2017, 11:07 AM EDT. Found a couple interesting articles on theanine (which is in green tea and black tea), here and here.

And here's an interesting page about theaflavins, which are found in black tea.

That page mentions, "Either black tea or supplementation also appears to reduce the absorption of fatty acids, cholesterol, and starches from the intestinal tract which can reduce nutrient absorption quantities (and secondary to inhibiting starch absorption, there may be some probiotic effects similar to dietary fiber)."

Maybe that partly explains why I was thinner back in the days when I regularly drank black tea. Not sure I like the idea of reducing nutrient absorption.

Here's another interesting article on theaflavins.

I think I'm going to keep drinking primarily green tea, but I might sometimes drink black tea for variety's sake, and also in case it has any health benefits that green tea doesn't have.


Additions, March 16, 2017, 11:36 AM/12:03 PM EDT. Just noticed in the above two articles about theanine that black tea is thought to contain more theanine than green tea. I guess that might give me a reason to drink more black tea.

(Though the 2nd article says some forms of green tea can have around the same amount as black tea. Quote: "Gyokuro and matcha tea have as much as 46mg per cup".

Wouldn't mind trying gyokuro and matcha if it was grown in the USA, but I'm guessing it probably isn't. Correction - maybe it's available here, but, it's probably too expensive for me. I'm not even going to try that, because I don't want to get hooked on something I can barely afford.)


Fortunately, I like both green and black tea, and I definitely feel like both have good effects on me. Will probably keep drinking green tea more often than black tea, but, I'm glad now I have a reason to try all these black teas grown in South Carolina, instead of just sticking with green tea.

Since green tea reputedly contains less caffeine than black tea, I think I'll mostly stick with green tea for a while for that reason. From what I read, it sounds like theanine might help counteract some of the effects of caffeine - except in my experience, I definitely felt like my formerly usual black tea gave me a stronger caffeine jolt, and I think for now I prefer the milder effect of green tea.

But, some black tea might be nice for me every once in a while. I just hope my adrenals are OK with all this caffeinated tea. Fortunately, I feel fine at the moment.


Addition, March 17, 2017, 4:28 PM EDT. Still feeling mostly fine, though recently I started to feel close to a headache, which I'm guessing might have resulted from me delaying having tea. (That feeling already faded away by the time I finished writing this update.)

Yesterday, I finally got my room adequately cleaned up again. Also made a little progress with the next room.

Got a little irritable yesterday afternoon (before I was finished cleaning), but that went away even without ground flaxseed (warning), perhaps because having my room nice again, and my bed and office chair uncluttered with junk, put me in such a good mood.

Now, with that distracting nuisance out of the way, I can finally more easily return to other things, like XSLT.


Addition, March 18, 2017, 12:57 PM EDT. I got a slight headache yesterday evening but it soon went away. Still doing fine, even though I woke up very thirsty.

Been thinking over how to design at least a very basic visual programming system, and feel like I've been making progress.

That seems like more fun (and potentially more beneficial in the long run) than a lot of other things I could work on. So, even though I probably ought to update my Puppy Linux Setup Kit at least a little, I haven't yet, because I'm itching to be able to update it (and work on many other scripts) using my increasingly unvaguely imagined visual programming system. :-)


Addition, March 19, 2017, 10:53 AM EDT. I guess I'm doing OK, but, my eyes got gooey again yesterday, and I was sneezy, etc. And my eyes are still a bit gooey today.

However, I'm now wondering if this might be related to the red cayenne pepper I spilled quite a while back, not sure when. When I was cleaning my room, I found a lot of it was still under various junk. My eyes actually didn't get at all gooey while cleaning it up, nor afterward until yesterday and today (if I recall correctly), but, while cleaning it, I got very sneezy and my nose ran a lot.

So, not sure that's the cause of my problems, but, perhaps I ought to vacuum in here to try to get rid of whatever trace amounts of cayenne might still be in here.


Addition, March 19, 2017, 5:30 PM EDT. Been too sleepy to vacuum (especially now that my tea's caffeine wore off), but, my eyes aren't gooey anymore, and no other cold-like symptoms.

I probably should have stayed asleep longer, but, wasn't sure I felt capable of going back to sleep, and ended up staying up.

Had lots of energy yesterday - in a single evening, I cleaned a mess that had been piling up for probably almost 15 years. (Not in the next room - that's still a mess.) That day, I microwaved my tea for 5 minutes instead of 4, so, perhaps my tea was more strongly caffeinated that day.

Today, finally returned to doing more with PHP. But I'm getting too sleepy to even do much more of that.


So tired of being tired. And tired of never being able to predict very far in advance how I'm going to feel or how well-rested I'm going to be on any given day (though that's nothing new, due to my severe sleep issues).

I wonder if maybe I'd be better off drinking my formerly usual amount of caffeine. I drank black tea pretty regularly ever since 2000, and functioned well enough a lot of that time. Or, I guess I could keep microwaving my green tea for 5 minutes instead of 4.

I don't know, maybe there's just no true cure for what ails me - just temporary alleviations such as caffeine.


Addition, March 19, 2017, 6:23 PM EDT. I wonder if my circadian rhythm problems really do give me something like chronic jet lag, with various of my body's systems (like digestion, hormones, sleep cycle, etc.) out of sync with each other.

I wonder if sufficient caffeine actually reduces those problems for me? I don't think it's a cure either, but, maybe it actually improved my situation (before I possibly got adrenal fatigue, that is).

I sure hope my roughly 5-month break from most caffeine was enough for me to recover a lot from my possible adrenal fatigue and go back to my old caffeine habits.

Anyway, now I'm feeling more awake again. Seems like eating potato chips (and other carbs) too early in my day really does make me sleepy. And eating cottage cheese in my morning seems to help a lot with my alertness (but I skipped that today).

And I think maybe I do best emotionally (and with other PMS symptoms) when I reliably eat two spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning) per day. (Another thing I skipped today until recently.)


ADdition, March 20, 2017, 5:05 AM EDT. Got pretty sleepy not too long after the last update, since I soon ate some more food with carbs.

And remembered I hadn't had magnesium in a while, so, I tried a capsule of this again - Advanced MAGNESIUM (by InnovixLabs). Highly Bioavailable Bisglycinate + Malate Formula - and I feel like I slept better. Unusually rich and detailed dreams.

I think I still want to sleep more, though. Only got 7 hours so far. (Slept sometime between 9:18 PM and 4:13 AM.) I seldom wake up really feeling like I want to stay awake - at first, at least, I almost always feel like I need more sleep. Sometimes I try, but it seems like my body often just reaches the point where it refuses to sleep anymore, lately around 7 hours after I go to sleep.

But maybe now I am sufficiently magnesiumed up that going back to sleep is more of a possibility. I guess I could even eat something carby (or with melatonin, like walnuts) to try to make myself even more tired.


Even these excellent smoked almonds sometimes have seemed to make me tired lately, though I never noticed them having that effect on me years ago. But, apparently I'm not the only one to ever notice that effect, since almonds are sometimes on lists of foods that reputedly help you sleep, like this list.

And this list, which also mentions walnuts, which have always tended to make me feel sleepier (unless I'm very well-rested before I eat them). Maybe I should try eating before sleep more often, but I tend to get really lazy about doing anything when tired.

Maybe I should start paying more attention to my Relative Scheduler so I don't lose track of time and where I am in my so-called schedule so easily. And probably ought to find (or make) some timer software to make it so I can more harmlessly lose track of time while getting absorbed in tasks like programming, or even just reading.

But for now, I guess I'll just try to go back to sleep again. Still feeling like I want to go back to sleep.


Addition, March 20, 2017, 12:02 PM EST. Had some walnuts and milk before sleep. Kept waking up thirsty, but managed to sleep sometime between 6 AM and 11:33 AM. Now I finally feel like I got enough sleep for once, and didn't immediately feel like going back to sleep after I last woke.

I think maybe I ought to put a bit less salt in my water, in case there was too much. It tasted OK, but I drank unsalted water too in case the slightly salted water might be making my thirst worse instead of better.

I feel so much better. I wonder, though, if maybe my body isn't generating enough melatonin on its own to make me sufficiently tired to sleep, or to sleep well when I do manage to sleep. I've read that older people generate less melatonin than younger people. Here's an interesting article I found about melatonin.

I've never tried over-the-counter melatonin, since I'd rather just eat walnuts. Or dried sour/tart cherries, which are also reputed to contain a lot of melatonin, even more than walnuts. (Except I wonder if there's more or less melatonin in dried sour/tart cherries than in non-dried cherries?)

Anyway, even just walnuts tend to work pretty well on me, so well that despite them being one of my favorite foods, I mostly avoid eating them during my day so they won't possibly make me tired. Then by the time I get tired, I tend to avoid eating them just because I get very lazy about doing anything that involves getting out of bed. So, haven't been eating them much at all for months, partly because I usually forgot I had some.

Definitely in a much better mood today. Very pleased that I managed to sleep a lot longer than I thought I might be able to, and that I woke up feeling like I finally got enough sleep.


Addition, March 20, 2017, 1:54 PM EDT. Still haven't had tea yet, but am still feeling wide awake.

I wonder if caffeine maybe messes even more with my melatonin and circadian rhythms than I realized. There are lots of articles, like this one, which say caffeine delays the circadian cycle and one's nightly melatonin peak. Still not sure whether the effects of tea are more bad than good, or more good than bad, for me.

It would probably be interesting if I could somehow easily get a clear idea of what my circadian-related bodily functions are up to, and whether they really are out of sync (like a jet-lagged person) or not. But, not sure I'm really in the mood right now to research that in depth, because there are too many other things I'd rather work on.

Computer programming is often so annoyingly difficult and time-consuming for me, that if I can make a visual programming system that makes it much faster and easier for me to do programming, it will give me a lot more time to do other things.


Addition, March 20, 2017, 4:03 PM EDT. Still feeling fine - wide awake and not overly hyper after having green tea microwaved for 5 minutes.

Happily, I found some useful timer scripts written in PHP-GTK - one with minutes and seconds and one with minutes, seconds, and hundredths of a second - from one of the best websites I've ever found about PHP-GTK.

I haven't tried these scripts in the already-released Astroblahhh GLMP-GTK or Astroblahhh PH-GTK, but my guess is they would probably work fine, since most PHP-GTK scripts I ever tried from there have worked fine with Astroblahhh GLMP-GTK and Astroblahhh PH-GTK.

And they definitely work fine with my unreleased Astroblahhh GLMP-GTK update which runs in Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2, and uses PHP 5.6.13 and PHP-GTK 2.0.1.


Addition, March 21, 2017, 12:14 AM EDT. Plenty of energy up until I ate a bunch of carbs around 7 PM. (Potato chips and ginger snaps with milk.)

Mostly been tired since then. But, this was still my best day since I don't even know when. Didn't even need ground flaxseed (warning) for my mood today.

I guess next time I wake up tired, maybe I'll just try much harder to go back to sleep, and try eating walnuts for their melatonin again. (Have to be cautious with magnesium, though, since too much gives me diarrhea.) Apparently, enough sleep is all I need to feel much better.


I wonder what happened with my melatonin that made it so I no longer so easily naturally sleep as long as I actually need to. I don't think that possible problem was just from resuming drinking tea, because I think I was already unsatisfied with my energy levels prior to resuming drinking tea.

Anyway, maybe I'd be better off quitting tea again, don't know. Wonder if sufficient melatonin would give me enough of an immune system boost to compensate for my root canaled teeth possibly giving my immune system a hard time. Then maybe I wouldn't need an immune system boost from tea, nor an artificial energy boost from caffeine, since I'd be sleeping better.

One thing I definitely liked about quitting tea was, not having to worry I might get a headache if I don't get up and have tea despite still feeling tired.

So... maybe I'll start decreasing tea again. I don't know if I'll quit it as strictly this time, since I think I might like a cup every once in a while, as long as it's not enough to readdict me.


Addition, March 21, 2017, 8:09 AM EDT. Slept sometime between 12:37 AM and 7:15 AM. Feeling maybe rested enough today, though I woke up thirsty with very dry eyes again. (On second thought, I think I do feel like going back to sleep.)

Had almonds instead of walnuts before sleep. I don't think they're as effective on me for making me sleepy, but, just thought I'd try them. Maybe they helped some.


Thought of searching for "estrogen melatonin" without quotes.

Found various interesting articles, such as this one, this one, and this one

Here's one called 10 Ways to Lower Estrogen Toxic Load. It mentions both flaxseeds (warning) and green tea as being helpful, among many other things.


Maybe I should get some tart cherry juice, which is at the top of this list of melatonin-containing foods. And only drink some when I intend to soon try to go to sleep. And try to avoid drinking too much of it, so I don't get desensitized to melatonin, as I've heard can happen.

I think I'm going to try this organic kind, which numerous Amazon reviewers and commenters say is tremendously cheaper at Walmart.

Definitely still feeling like I should sleep more, so... I guess I'll try now. Maybe I'll try just 1 walnut instead of 5 or whatever I had the other night, and see if that does anything for me. For some reason, it's not hard for me to avoid eating many walnuts - I love them, but somehow I'm satisfied with just a few at a time.


Addition, March 21, 2017, 8:40 AM EDT. Definitely feeling more rested than I did the first time I woke up yesterday, but, still want to sleep more.

Forgot to note down exactly what time I ate a walnut, but, probably soon after the previous update. Might be feeling some effect already, not sure.

Maybe another thing I ought to do is get easily opened and closed light-blocking curtains, since light and darkness definitely do affect me to some extent. I don't mind if I get totally out of sync with the world as long as I'm sleeping well.


Addition, March 21, 2017, 10:54 AM EDT. Stayed awake, since I ended up browsing Amazon for light-blocking curtains.

Anyway, I guess I probably should quit tea again, because maybe it worsened my adrenal fatigue again and is interfering too much with my ability to sleep.

I hope my health wasn't permanently ruined by the emotional shock I got last May/June. :-( But I guess I'd probably be even worse off at this point, if that hadn't gotten me to quit my electric blanket, and tea (for a while).

Addition, 11:12 AM EDT. Plus, I found a lot of beneficial things for my health that I otherwise might not have found if I had continued mostly ignoring my declining health.

Anyway, judging by my probably PMS-related unhappiness at the moment, I probably shouldn't skip ground flaxseed (warning), and maybe I'd even be better off eating more of it.

But, judging by yesterday, it's likely that good-quality sleep would be even better for me. Though caffeine also temporarily alleviates the fatigue. But maybe without any caffeine, I'd have less fatigue to alleviate.


Addition, March 21, 2017, 11:58 AM EDT. Still haven't vacuumed, but, my eyes haven't gotten gooey and no cold-like symptoms today. I've been being more careful not to rub my eyes.

Asked a relative about how I could install some curtains. Also finally put the Redshift screen-tinting software on a Lighthouse 64 Puppy Linux 6.02 Beta 2 computer I use frequently but wasn't already using Redshift on.

Getting sleepier now, so I guess I'll risk skipping tea, and also have a few more walnuts and some extra ground flaxseed (warning), and try again to sleep.


Addition, March 21, 2017, 2:57 PM EDT. Guess I only slept about 2 more hours. But, I think I feel at least a bit better. Wish I wouldn't get so thirsty, though. I get so much more thirsty when I sleep than I do while I'm awake.

Guess I might as well start my day. Won't skip tea entirely, but won't brew it as long, so I can get started reducing caffeine again. Then, I guess I'll see what programming I can finish off, or at the very least, library books.


Addition, March 21, 2017, 4:14 PM EDT. I feel so much happier drinking tea, I'm having a tough time convincing myself to give it up again. Also, I'm awaiting a box of this Earl Grey black tea grown in South Carolina.

And also one of these curtains. I was tempted to pick burgundy or even orange, but I thought that such rich colors might get tiresome after a while, so I picked a milder color - sand.

Anyway, I finally feel able to focus again on other things besides figuring out how to improve my sleep and fall asleep more easily, yay. :-)


Addition, March 22, 2017, 12:57 PM EDT. Yesterday, several hours after tea, returned to being overly tired, but somehow remained in a good enough mood to not mind particularly much.

Kept waking up thirsty, much too frequently. I suspect this might be related to my possibly adrenal fatigue-related electrolyte imbalance maybe getting worse again lately. Except I think lately, I might have been (and might still be) low on potassium more than salt.

Eating some smoked almonds during the night seemed to possibly help. When I got up and googled them to see how much potassium they have, I found they have what looks like a lot. And so do sunflower seeds, but I think the sunflower seeds we have maybe got too old to taste as good to me anymore. Or I'm just tired of them.

Also had a craving for orange juice before sleep (which also has some potassium).


Tried a quite small amount of tart cherry juice before sleep, and its not-so-sweet taste definitely doesn't appeal to me very much. I'm going to try mixing it with grape juice at some point.

I think its melatonin possibly did work on me to make me sleepier. But since I didn't measure how much I had, diluted it with a lot of water (also unmeasured), then only drank a little of the diluted juice, I'm not sure exactly how much I had. Going to avoid drinking very much of it just to try to avoid getting desensitized to melatonin.

I also had another capsule of this Advanced MAGNESIUM (by InnovixLabs). Highly Bioavailable Bisglycinate + Malate Formula, despite feeling wary about diarrhea. Fortunately, didn't get it.


Anyway, I think probably I'll sleep better in general if I eat better, and make sure I get enough potassium.

My eating habits are terrible sometimes. And, because I pretty consistently keep a log of what I eat, I can easily look back and see how terrible they are. Which doesn't always inspire me to eat better, but, sometimes it does. At the very least, my food log preserves a lot of the specific details (which I otherwise would easily forget) about why I feel like crap.

For example, what I had yesterday after I woke up was vitamins, mint green tea (microwaved for 4 minutes), and a lot of Utz brand sour cream/onion-flavored potato chips. Then, early on March 22nd, I had a fair bit of cottage cheese with black pepper (before sleep, instead of the time it makes more sense to have it - after waking, since high-protein foods seem to be good for my energy in my morning), and some orange juice.

Then I had some smoked almonds almost in my sleep. And water - some slightly salted, which I didn't feel was helping, so then I switched to unsalted water.

So, I definitely should have eaten better recently. (And on many days before yesterday, too.)

But, nonetheless, I'm feeling much better and much more well-rested today than yesterday, even though it seemed like I was waking up very thirsty every couple of hours. Slept sometime between 3:59 AM and 11:46 AM.


Didn't get much done yesterday - looked at Clevnet books and watched Netflix with my family (Iron Fist and part of The Monkey King 2).

Today, thanks to feeling well-rested enough, I already feel like I'm going to have a much easier time doing whatever it is I want to do today. (Haven't decided yet, but, I'll probably have an easier time deciding, too, because even just thinking is easier when I'm well-rested enough.)


Addition, March 22, 2017, 8:43 PM EDT. Been getting sleepy again since around 5:40 PM, even despite quite a lot of sunlight from my window earlier.

Earlier, my libido surprisingly returned. (My tiredness had suppressed that before.) Anyway, that led to me ending up so tired I almost went back to sleep already around 2:15 PM. But surprisingly, I started to wake up again instead of falling asleep.

I was surprised to read here that only 1 in 6 women sleep better after sex. I wonder if that's really true? I always thought it takes so much energy that probably it has a sleep-promoting effect on most women (and men)... but maybe I was wrong.

I don't know if I mentioned it before, but that's another thing that can do a lot to help me sleep. (That was the case even when I was younger, more energetic, and probably healthier.) Too bad I often get too tired to go to the trouble or to even think of resorting to that possible help for my sleep problems. Anyway, that was something I neglected to mention before that helped me before my best, most well-rested day recently.

I'm probably going to usually continue to neglect to mention such activities, for false modesty's sake. :-) But, that definitely has such a powerful and beneficial effect on me (particularly if I intend to soon go to sleep) that it seems worth mentioning at least once.


Today, I had sufficient energy for a while after I recovered from that, especially after tea (microwaved for 4 minutes again). Then, I made the mistake of eating potato chips and other carbs too early in my day again instead of cottage cheese. And started to get a bit irritable, so, had 2 big spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning).

Didn't get much done besides reading, and now I'm drowsy again, even despite lots of sunlight earlier from the big window that's in front of me.

Even though my energy didn't last all that long, this was my second-best day recently.

So, hopefully things will continue to improve, even despite PMS and my time of the month approaching.


But, I think I probably ought to keep reducing caffeine, because I definitely suspect I actually hadn't recovered enough from my possible adrenal fatigue to resume regular caffeine. Maybe sporadic, occasional caffeine, but not daily.

Given that a lot of my possible cold symptoms might have just been a reaction to traces of spilled cayenne pepper in my unvacuumed room, maybe I don't need the immune system boost of tea as much as I thought I might.

Didn't expect to end up having so much trouble feeling energetic for more than a few hours every day, and also so much trouble even getting a sufficient amount of good-quality sleep in the first place. And I think my mood swings might have gotten worse lately. And getting so tired I got even more lazy than usual about eating right didn't help either.

So, it seems now like the drawbacks for me of caffeinated tea outweigh the benefits.


Fortunately, I still prefer the taste of non-caffeinated teas and Teeccino, even though this mint green tea grown in South Carolina is probably the best green tea I've ever had, and I'll probably keep drinking it on occasion even after I mostly quit it.

At least I haven't had much trouble with headaches during this experiment. Good thing I mostly experimented with green tea rather than black tea (which is said to have more caffeine).


I still think my electric blanket was even worse for me than caffeine, but, it seems like caffeine was worse for me than I realized.

And I used to be able to handle caffeine much better, but now I apparently can't, so I'm guessing I probably really do have adrenal fatigue. Wonder how long it takes to get better from that. Maybe I'll never be able to drink caffeinated tea regularly ever again? Oh, well.

But, having caffeinated tea occasionally will hopefully be satisfying enough. And maybe someday I will recover sufficiently to have it more frequently.


Additions, March 23, 2017, 11:38 AM/11:54 AM EDT. Slept sometime between around 12:29 AM and 7:15 AM. Woke up less thirsty than usual, and don't recall waking up much before 7:15 AM. Had some very diluted cherry juice before sleep, then some walnuts when that didn't seem effective enough fast enough.

After waking, got over my initial tiredness much quicker than usual, and felt well-rested enough for a while, but, started to get a bit sleepy around 9:50 AM after some vitamins around 9:30 AM, including a new one I started yesterday evening and had again this morning - Full Spectrum VITAMIN K2 (by InnovixLabs). Provides two essential forms of K2 (MK-4 + MK-7).

Then I found a forum discussion about Vitamin K2 which had some quite worrying anecdotes, though also various positive anecdotes, as well as anecdotes with both good and bad-sounding effects.

One woman even described how she grew in height and her face changed shape! :-O


So, even though I'm not sure what to think about all of those anecdotes, and I've been unsure I've had any effects at all (good or bad) from this other kind of Vitamin K2 I've been taking for a while, with only the MK7 form of Vitamin K2... I think I'm going to be more cautious about all Vitamin K2 in the future.

And also have been decreasing my Vitamin D again lately because I don't want to possibly overdose on that.

My energy this morning has increased again after eating some cottage cheese. But, I'm feeling out of sorts, perhaps because of PMS. Lately have sometimes felt a little achy and somewhat weak.


Yesterday evening, I finally got this Earl Grey black tea grown in South Carolina. MOAR CAFFEINE, HA HA HA!!! :-D

Haven't tried it yet, but, I think instead of green tea today, I'll have a partway full mug of that, microwaved for 2 minutes or less, to try to reduce the amount of caffeine I'll get from it.


Addition, March 23, 2017, 2:06 PM EDT. Been feeling tired, but slightly more awake after a small amount of tea. Tried this Earl Grey black tea grown in South Carolina. It was one of the better Earl Greys I've ever had, though not the best.

Out of concern for my adrenals, I discarded most of it, with a slight twinge of regret. But I think I like this mint green tea more.

Maybe I'll try avoiding caffeine for a while until I start to feel like I might get a headache.

Before tea, was very irritable, which is probably partly from tiredness too. I also might need more ground flaxseed (warning) already.

I wonder if there is some sustainable amount of caffeine I can have regularly mostly without bad effects.

Anyway, I sure hope I can get back to normal someday. I should at least have more energy than this.


Addition, March 23, 2017, 2:17 PM EDT. Now I feel a lot more awake, which is interesting, since I drank hardly any of that tea.


Additions, March 23, 2017, 3:10 PM/3:24 PM EDT. Already feeling better, emotionally and energy-wise, and I didn't even have ground flaxseed (warning) or even a meal yet. I guess just not feeling tired makes me feel better. Though I guess maybe tea and/or caffeine might also improve mood in other ways.

I'm glad I discarded most of that mug of Earl Grey black tea, because if so little, microwaved for only 2 minutes (plus a little extra just to warm it up some more after adding half-and-half; can't remember if I had taken the teabag out by then yet or not), has this much effect on me, then all of it probably would have been way too much for me.

Definitely not going to microwave my green tea for 4 or 5 minutes anymore (for the initial heating with the teabag still in). Maybe I'll try 3 minutes. (But not right now - I'm still trying to do without tea for a while until I feel close to a headache.) It would be really nice if I found there is some amount of caffeine I can live with.


Addition, March 23, 2017, 3:44 PM EDT. Seems I'm still very irritable, at least if something irritates me, so, I better have ground flaxseed (warning) and some food right away.


Addition, March 23, 2017, 5:12 PM EDT. Doing better now. Had my usual 2 spoonfuls of ground flaxseed (warning). Then a kale salad for the first time in a while, with MSG-free ranch dressing and croutons. And a tomato, which (as usual) I lazily ate like an apple instead of putting it in my salad.

Had a lot of croutons. Been starting to get drowsier, despite lots of sun from my window, but not as drowsy as I feared I might get.

Been reading a bit. Not sure if I'm up to returning to programming. (That was going OK soon after I woke up, but then I got tired again.)


Anyway, I'm hoping that as the amount of caffeine in my body decreases, my sleep quality will be restored to normal without me having to resort to increasing my melatonin by eating walnuts and/or drinking tart cherry juice.

Wonder how long that will take. This page says:

"Caffeine begins to affect your body very quickly. It reaches a peak level in your blood within 30 to 60 minutes. It has a half-life of 3 to 5 hours. The half-life is the time it takes for your body to eliminate half of the drug. The remaining caffeine can stay in your body for a long time. Effects can last from 8 to 14 hours."

I wonder if it's possible that the effects could last even longer than that for some people.

Anyway, I don't expect to have months of withdrawal symptoms after only having one mug of green tea per day for I think less than a month. Hopefully I'll recover pretty quickly when my sleep improves. I felt pretty great just the other day (March 20th), when I managed to get around 12 hours of sleep. (Which was at first only 7 hours, then about 2 hours awake, then, surprisingly, 5 more hours of sleep.)


Addition, March 23, 2017, 7:14 PM EDT. Now, instead of feeling tired but nonetheless frustratingly incapable of sleeping, I feel tired and capable of sleeping. (Kind of like how walnuts make me feel, but I didn't have any walnuts, nor tart cherry juice.) I'm guessing this is probably because I mostly skipped tea today.

So, that's comforting. As much as I like tea and its pleasant effects on my mood (at least right after I drink it), I still prefer the pleasant effects of good-quality sleep.

Might stay up a while longer to read, eat, and/or watch TV or Netflix with my family, though.


Addition, March 24, 2017, 1:09 PM EDT. Probably slept better today. Slept sometime between 4:02 AM and 10:51 AM. Didn't have any walnuts or tart cherry juice to try to boost my melatonin.

Started to feel more relaxed yesterday, and still feel that way today. Hadn't even realized how unrelaxed I had been until the absence of as much caffeine in my body naturally allowed me to relax more.

Had only Omega 3 and Vitamin C so far today. I sure hope nothing in those makes me tired. Wonder if I can find a brand of Vitamin C without magnesium stearate, since magnesium in general can make me tired, and also, I've run across some worrying articles about that specific form of magnesium. Though other pages claim magnesium stearate is harmless. And I don't know what to believe, and wish I understood enough about biology and chemistry to have a better idea of which pages are actually making sense.

Returned to programming since I feel able to concentrate better again now that I'm not as tired. I feel like I could be better, though, and that maybe I still need to sleep some more. (I felt better when I first woke up.)

No headaches so far, so, I'm going to keep avoiding caffeinated tea.


Addition, March 24, 2017, 2:30 PM EDT. Already almost dozing off again, and cottage cheese didn't help my energy much today.

Could be PMS, could be caffeine withdrawal, etc. Oh, well. I hope someday I'm cured of whatever is wrong with me, because I can scarcely get anything done.


Additions, March 24, 2017, 3:04 PM/3:28 PM EDT. Feeling more awake now for some reason.

Anyway, it wasn't that long ago that I was doing much better overall, so, hopefully I'll get back to normal again somehow.

Guess I'll try increasing my Vitamin C, since it's supposed to be good for adrenal fatigue, and I've been lazy for a while about taking it multiple times throughout my day. I pretty regularly take 3 grams in my morning, then little or nothing later on. Sometimes the only Vitamin C I take later on is Nature Made Stress B (which also contains Vitamin C, and which I've also been lazy about taking lately).

I just hope the magnesium stearate in my Rite-Aid brand Vitamin C isn't actually doing me harm. I've had so much Vitamin C with magnesium stearate, that if magnesium stearate really is bad, I might be in big trouble now. But, it has never felt to me like that brand of Vitamin C has been anything other than good for me, so, I'm not really that worried about it. Still am going to try to find a brand of Vitamin C without magnesium stearate, though.


Additions, March 24, 2017, 5:30 PM/6:16 PM EDT. Dozed off sometime between 3:41 PM and 4:15 PM. Possible would have slept longer, but my noise-blocking box fan was off and our dog started barking.

Anyway, that unintentional nap helped my energy a bit, and improved my mood too.

Still no headache.


Found an interesting Amazon review saying Vitamin K2 makes the author sleepy almost all day.

And another scary forum thread about Vitamin K2.

My last Vitamin K2 was yesterday, and I'm going to avoid it for a while, even though I'm not sure whether or not I had any effects (good or bad) from any brand I've taken. I think I started taking Vitamin K2 in the latter half of December, and took 1 daily most days since then.


I think maybe I'd rather just eat more cheese (like gouda or edam, and perhaps other kinds I haven't tried yet) to get Vitamin K2. (But not brie, which I didn't like.) I've often read that getting nutrients from food is preferable to getting nutrients from supplements and can be safer.


Addition, March 24, 2017, 5:58 PM EDT. I should probably point out, I don't think Vitamin K2 supplements are probably to blame for my increased fatigue.

I think probably I underestimated how bad caffeine would be for me. And caffeine withdrawal isn't great either. And PMS often wipes me out too.


Additions, March 24, 2017, 10:54 AM/11:09 AM EDT. Been feeling hunger more strongly today, maybe because I've been avoiding caffeine. I actually sort of liked not feeling as hungry as often, but, I guess it's probably healthier for me to eat more.

Still been feeling tired, but didn't go back to sleep at all yet, and even actually managed to make some progress with programming. For some reason, PHP programming is so comfortable and relatively pleasant for me, even when I'm not at my best (as long as I'm not too tired). Somehow, things just work as I intend (or expect) a great deal more easily than code I try to write in other languages. Which puts me in a much better mood. :-)

Earlier, found that Celestial Seasonings Madagascar Vanilla non-caffeinated red tea is much improved by microwaving it for 5 minutes instead of just 2.


Addition, March 25, 2017, 2:51 AM EDT. Getting almost too tired to do anything, but, I finally have a reasonably convenient, reasonably well-put-together way of using (or trying to use) any XSLT sheet on any XML or VUE file. Oh, the excitement. :-D

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DemExit
Friday, July 29th, 2016
17:05:30 GMT

Activism

I'm unhappy that the election was rigged against Bernie Sanders, so, I'm going to participate in DemExit by exiting the Democratic Party.

I don't yet know who I'll vote for.

I recently heard that George Washington thought political parties are a bad idea in general.

And I never liked the fact that many people instantly make snap judgments and jump to wild conclusions about people and issues based on a single-word label like "Democrat" or "Republican".

So, maybe I'll just stay out of every party from now on.

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