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Brenda has been writing since grade school. She attended journalism school where she majored in professional writing. She loves to decorate, garden, read and spend time with her Yorkies.

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Taking Small Steps

Yesterday at PT was a successful hour and a half. I even walked some without my boot! I was able to raise up on my toes and hold it for a bit. Andrew said he was now seeing a bit of progress.

I hobbled out in my boot, taking the steps down to the sidewalk sideways one foot at a time as I've learned to do, feeling like I'd achieved something of great magnitude. Something that I would not have even taken note of a few years ago. Another lifetime ago.

I'm not having much luck with coffee pots these days. First my mini Keurig just stopped working, though I cleaned it and did all the trouble shooting. 

Then months ago I was in Tuesday Morning and found a Cuisinart coffee maker, which was what I had been accustomed to using for years, at a clearance price. And bought it. 

A month ago it stopped making hot coffee. I could turn on the hot water in the sink and let it run a bit, then immediately put it in the coffee maker. And as soon as it was done, pour my cup. Still tepid. Tepid coffee is just no fun to drink. And I don't like the way microwaved coffee tastes.

So I took my old Cuisinart that I'd had in Texas out of the closet and tried it again. It kept spilling coffee as you poured it into a mug, coming out the sides. Tried it again. Still no hot coffee. 

Last night I ordered a $41 Melitta from Walmart with my normal monthly purchases. Never used a Melitta. Any of you have any experience with it? Tell me in the comments what your favorite coffee maker is. I'll take note of that in case this one doesn't work out. 

Today, as you go about doing what you do, be thankful that you can walk. Unless that is a problem that you too have. Be thankful that you can walk up steps without going sideways. One foot down, then next foot down to meet it. Holding on to a rail.

That you can do the things we all take for granted. Be thankful for the nature around you, and the gifts that nature gives us with each consecutive season and each day. Fall leaves that turn red and gold and then carpet the ground. 

A sunset. A night sky sprinkled with stars. A full moon.

Be aware. Don't rush through life like you're afraid you'll miss a train. I used to be like that. Not anymore. I stop, look, listen. And say thank you for all of it.

Brenda Pruitt
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  1. Brenda it was very heartening to read you could walk a bit and raise to your toes without your boot. Hard work with the reward of strengthening. So positive. You are so right, take nothing for granted and celebrate what you can do.

    I use a Melitta cone (1 cup size) drip coffee (I make 1/2 coffee, 1/2 skim (heated) with cinnamon stirred in. Drip coffee. No machine (tried many and keep going back to very simple). Boil water, microwave milk, cone with filter and fine coffee grounds set on cup holding hot milk. Add the water, shake on some cinnamon. My treat.

  2. I'm so glad to hear that you were able to walk without your boot on for a little bit! Progress is happening! I think you're seeing a better therapist this time. I once had a Cuisinart coffee maker for years until it quit working. The power switch wouldn't work to make the coffee start brewing. We then got a Keurig and have been using it ever since. I think we got it last Christmas. So far so good. Ya know, I always had good luck with the classic Mr. Coffee makers in the past too. They aren't expensive and always worked. I hope your new brand maker works for you. I've never tried that brand before. I don't take feeling good and walking normally (without pain) for granted since my son and I both suffer from arthritic problems. He unfortunately has it much worse and can't walk normally. He has trouble with stairs too. Mine flares up every now and then, so at least I get a break. I'm always thankful for my "good days"!

  3. I use the 1 cup Melitta cone also. I boil water in an electric kettle and make my 1 cup a day. I usually drink tea during the rest of the day, but need my one cup of coffee first.I am so happy that you are making progress with your ankle.

  4. Brenda I am so happy to hear your are walking a bit without the boot, I pray your progress keeps improving. Did you happen to register your Keurig? I have had success with Keurig when I had issues with my brewer, they were very helpful and replaced mine with a brand new one. I know it is awful being without that morning cup of coffee.

  5. I'm so happy for you Brenda, I know it is baby steps but you really are making progress!

    It is so fitting that you did this post today about being thankful. I just finished reading about a man who contracted polio as a child and has been living in an iron lung for 60 years. He has managed to obtain a law degree and practices family law in spite of his condition. The picture showed him lying in the iron lung but that wasn't what was amazing, it was the huge SMILE on his face.

    It really made me stop and think of how blessed I am so thank you for the reminder to stop and enjoy every minute.

    As far as coffee makers go I shun all of the new models and opt for an antique so to speak. Mine is called Farberware Superfast Fully Automatic, It's a percolator as opposed to a drip coffee maker and let me tell you, I've done the taste test and it is soooo superior to any coffee maker I've tried. You can find them on Ebay.

    1. Percolator in our house too. We still have our drip coffee maker, but it's sitting abandoned downstairs.

    2. I don't have one at the moment, but I agree-a percolator makes the best coffee!

    3. Percolator in our house as well. It's a must have according to hubby and I have to agree: he makes the best coffee I've ever tasted.

  6. You know how I feel about rushing through life. It does not leave you feeling serene. I am so happy that you are able to take baby steps. Keep up the PT. It is what got my knees working after surgery. I was so grateful for the therapists I had. I am a tea drinker so I'm afraid I can't advise you on a good coffee maker. Hope your new one works. xo Laura

  7. I am so happy you are getting good results from your surgery! I have had 8 knee surgeries and spent two and half years in a wheelchair. We even moved closer to family and built a handi-cap accessible house. Then I found a doctor that tried something different and it worked. I still have a lot of pain and somedays are worse than others. But I too, am grateful just to be able to move across the room! Keep up the good therapy! xxDazee

  8. So happy for you that PT is going well, that you are seeing progress and you're doing better. You have a wonderful attitude about all of this and I enjoy your posts so much.
    I have health issues that cause lots of mobile problems for me some days. It's been a growing and good thing for me. I've come to appreciate the smaller things and the simple things in my life. Even on the days that I have to remain in bed or seated most of the time, there's so much I am grateful for.
    Life can be really hard sometimes but I've just taken the belief that if I awake each morning and am still breathing well then there's still a purpose for my life and I want to make the best of each day I'm given enjoying every second as best I can.
    As for the coffee pot, have you ever tried a French Press or a Chemex? I am an avid coffee drinker and have tried just about every coffee pot available on the market I believe. Just a few months ago I threw out my Kuerig after it broke and went to using the French Press or Chemex each day.
    The coffee tastes so much better to me and not ever bitter. There's a joy I get each morning waiting for the kettle to boil, smelling the coffee as it sits in the press or the filter of the Chemex. Such joy!
    I hope you have a beautiful day Brenda!

  9. I'm so happy for you that your ankle is making good progress! Yay!
    We have a Cuisinart now, but it's only a year old so no problems yet. The coffeemaker before it was a Bunn and it was a good one. I really only bought the Cuisinart because it takes up less space on my kitchen counter. The Bunn was several years old and still worked fine, just too big.

  10. I'm so glad that your PT went well!! I do understand how we take for granted everyday things. I've had some knee problems here lately and can relate to the steps and holding on and one step at a time! Also getting down on the floor with Tiger is fun but getting back up, not so much! I am using my Keruig but one of my daughters uses a French Press and the other uses a Melitta pour over (I think its what Claudia is now using). Good luck with finding something you like. Appliances just aren't made to last anymore are they.

  11. I'm so glad that you are seeing improvement. Yes, you're right, we take so much for granted. Life has a way of getting away from us and we think back and realize how much we missed. My mama used to say, "Stop wishing your life away." Growing up it was "I wish I was a teenager," "I wish I could drive and get out of this house," "I'll be glad when I get married." On and on the list went. Thank you for causing me to think and stop and count my blessings. Love reading your writing.

  12. Hi Brenda and I'm glad to know you're making some progress! I walk like that sometimes down steps because I have arthritis in my knee. You be careful and it's okay to take it slowly! Good luck with your coffee maker. I don't drink coffee but Mr. Precious does. He wants a Keurig and I'm not sure he's going to like waiting for each cup of coffee. Good luck with the new pot.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

    1. Shelia, we use a Keurig at work, and it's actually very fast ... well, at least I think so! :O) Bess

  13. You sound much more optimistic about your recovery! You've been in my thoughts and am relieved things are going better. Keep it up!

  14. Brenda, what comes to mind is trite but true: Way to go, and way to be! Great post. Bess

  15. DH uses a stainless steel stove top percolator. It is easy to clean, and doesn't take any longer than a electric drip pot. Besides we have lots of calcium in our water and the insides of those drip pots get disgusting. That doesn't help you much without a stove, but maybe you should just get a hot plate.
    I have one fallen arch which affected my left knee. For about 4 years I was lame, and kept getting worse, of course I didn't see a doctor about it. I went up and down stairs one at a time, I couldn't sit in a chair with my knee bend, but couldn't lay flat in my bed either. Driving was an ordeal. I had seen those Strutz arch supports and decided to try one. In a matter of hours I knew that was what was wrong. I have worn them now for almost 3 years. It took a long time to get my strength back. About a year ago I was wearing my Fat Baby cowboy boots, went to the basement, and came running back up the stairs. I didn't realize I had done it until I got to the top of the stairs, I was do excited. I started laughing and yelling to my husband.
    The moral of this story is keep doing the therapy, even after the PT is done. It may take a long time, but you are making progress. I am so happy for you.

  16. I remember reading about your cleaning your Keurig. I've had one for over 2 years and have never taken it apart and cleaned it. I used distilled water only, that''s the closest I get to "cleaning" it. Still works perfectly..Another trouble free way is to boil water and pour it over coffee placed into a Melitta Red Ready Joe Filter cone. It's my standby for when I really want a strong cup of coffee, you make it as strong or as weak as you like that way.
    Congrats on the great PT progress!

  17. I had Melitta coffee makers while I lived in Europe. I never had a problem with them, and I am picky about appliances. I don't know if the American version of Melitta is the same. I do use the Melitta coffee sometimes and that is what I used in Europe. Hope you find a good coffee pot. I go down stairs the same way and I hold onto the railing. Stairs and I don't get along anyway, but with bad knees, let's say I really avoid them:) Glad you had a productive day at therapy. Just don't over do.

  18. So glad that you are making progress with pt!!! That is great news!!
    I have some idea of what you are going through, as I broke my ankle in Jan, and I have a plate and screws. My husband calls me a cyborg. :D I can get around pretty well, but in the morning when my ankle is stiff, I walk like a zombie shuffling along.

  19. Glad to hear you are finally seeing some progress with your PT. Hopefully you will continue to improve and eventually get out of that darn boot. I strained my back muscles a few weeks ago so I can relate somewhat to being unable to walk normally. I can't put any weight on my left foot and I have to go to a massage therapist since this isn't resolving on its own. I realize this is small compared to your issues, but I've learned not to take walking for granted. Sorry to hear your coffeemaker is no longer working. Perhaps you can contact Keurig customer service for a replacement. I've never used a Melitta, but I'm sure they are fine coffeemakers. I'm the only coffee drinker at home, so I still use my little Mr. Coffee since I like traditional coffee, preferably with freshly ground beans. Wishing you continued progress with your physical therapy!

  20. YAY I'm so happy to hear your making progress in PT!! I love that little jar filled with snow and miniature cute!

  21. you go girl! i have,as of yet, not had the courage to stand on my toes, after a "dancer's fracture" two years ago and a long booted season as well ... so glad you are progressing! you will not just need good coffee after this, but also a super good massage or chiro ... favoring one side and boot walking, side-stepping take their toll on a body, and you deserve this pampering as you continue this journey to full, sure footed-ness ... hang in there. hope your new coffee maker is everything you dreamed of and more.

  22. So glad that you are doing better! Step by step, my friend.

    We do take things for granted all the time, don't we? This fact hits us sometimes after an accident or heartbreak or a health scare, at which point we take a personal vow, with only ourselves as witnesses, as we silently pledge to acknowledge and appreciate each and every day, and what it offers - conversations with faraway relatives, a tête-à-tête with a friend, food, shelter, warmth, and protection from the elements. Nature, which is, literally, everywhere, somehow gets snubbed by this new attitude of gratitude, and I wonder, is it because we assume that it will always be there?

    I have very clear memories of my first conscious appreciation of trees and flowers and bodies of water. I began to notice the beauty of nature's protagonists while walking to school and home again, 4 times a day! The weeping willows made such an impression on me, and I considered them to be the grandparents of all trees, as their long, thin, wavy branches unhurriedly swayed to and fro in the autumn breeze, looking lanky, old, and frail, like a grandma who had spent her entire life collecting olives from the ground, her back hunched over from the hard, tedious labour, her frail frame brittle and weak.

    These days, the first thing I do each morning is to open the windows and the shutters revealing a hilly countryside, rich in vineyards and fruit groves, valleys and mountains, and our own little garden, part vegetable patch, part herbs, flowers, and grass. And I feel blessed to be part of its story.


  23. stop and listen to the coffee brew...that's what I say! actually don't drink coffee, just hot tea so I am afraid I would not be any help with recommendations. good luck with your new one though.

  24. I'm so happy to hear about your PT visit and that progress is coming along..
    Not sure Ive ever mentioned I have bursitis in my right hip joint.. some times worse than others BUT it always makes me remember how very lucky I am to be able to walk.. slower- yep, limp a bit, yep but thats ok too.. I have legs and I can walk and I am very grateful for that.

    thinking of ya.. stay cozy~!

  25. Brenda, I'm so glad you are up and at 'em. I've been going to physical therapy for a strained calf muscle. My problems are nothing compared to yours and yet I'm shocked at how hard pt is. They really know how to get to the nitty gritty and it's hard work! Hang in there girl.

  26. looooove your pics!!!!! angie

  27. So glad to hear you had a good day at PT! I use an old, and I mean old (at least 20 years old) Bunn coffee maker. It belonged to my parents and I took it when they passed away. I love it! Not to mention it has a lifetime warranty so if any parts go bad, Bunn will send the replacement parts, free of charge. If those parts don't fix the problem, Bunn will sell you a brand new one for abut 1/2 of the cost of a new coffee maker. I've only had to get replacement parts, one time. The poor thing just keeps going! I also use an electric percolator that is older than the Bunn! It was made by Salad Master and makes the best coffee. I don't use it often because I practically run to the coffee pot every morning and don't think I could wait for the percolator to do it's thing! The second pot or for special times, I use the percolator. Oh! I almost forgot about the little aluminum stove top percolator we use in the camper!

    Grace & Peace.

  28. Just a thought...did you call Keurig? When this happened to us they sent us a brand new one,at no charge. We were very pleased! Good luck!

  29. I am happy to hear you are making progress at PT, Brenda! You really do learn to appreciate the little and the big things when you are laid up!
    We have a Cuisinart Grind and Brew...grinds the beans, then brews the coffee. We have used it daily for several years without any problems. Hope you find the right coffeemaker for you!

  30. As always a beautiful post. A gentle reminder to slow down, count our blessings and enjoy the beauty of our world. I am glad you are progressing with PT. I just went through it with my shoulder. Boy, I don't take anything for granted anymore. In just seconds your life can change. I hope you continue on the journey to recover from your injury. Hugs, Karie

  31. I am so happy for you, Brenda! I know what huge progress that is for you with PT. And like I've told you, having gone through PT several times myself for various ailments, I know what a long, slow, painful process it is. And how good it feels when you see your own progress. Funny enough, this afternoon when I bundled up and took a walk around my neighborhood, I was thinking how grateful I was that I was able to do so without any problems. As you know, I currently have lymphedema in my arm - and that will never go away because it can't be cured, only managed - but I still try to look for some of the bright things in my life. As for coffee makers, I gave up on them awhile ago. I tried several different brands too, and none ever lasted long. Nor did they make what I consider GOOD coffee. I swear by my French press.

  32. How wonderful that things are going well with this PT Team! :)

    I don't think that they make appliances to last like they used to. I just use a little Mr. Coffee...I don't like strong coffee and that and whatever Folgers is on sale works for me. I did have a Keurig that was a Christmas gift but I only used it for the samples, and I think that I ordered teas for it once. At some point in the summer I gave it to the DIL to use down there on weekends because I wasn't using it enough to warrant the space it took up. No space here in my kitchen! :)

    I hope that your Melitta works well and lasts forever.

  33. Brenda,
    Hurray for small steps! I know exactly how it feels...last year at this time I was dealing with a broken knee, crutches, a bulky brace and unable to do much! I still have to take stairs slow but thank God I can go up them normally! I, too, no longer take things for granted. Hang in there and celebrate the progress you make no matter how small it seems.
    As for coffee pots, I use a good old Mr. Coffee...they have one with a stainless carafe and removable water container. Pretty nice. Good luck with the one you ordered! I hope it works.

  34. Glad you're PT is going well. I love my Hamilton Beach Brew Station coffee maker. There's no carafe to wash and the coffee is very hot. That's why I originally bought it based on the reviews. I live alone and used to have the 12 cup one but then I noticed they have a 6 cup and it's perfect. The 6 cup is only $25 on Amazon and I'll never have another kind.

  35. Like you said, baby steps. You'll get there Brenda, and you're on your way.

    I use a tassimo. No complaints.

  36. So happy your PT is going well. Sounds like you have a good team working with you who really care about you! We've been using Bunn coffee makers for at least 30 years. We are only on our third one...and we brew at least one pot a day! We had a Mr. Coffee...didn't last. So you can guess what I recommend! My suggestion is read a lot of reviews, which I know you do. Good luck Brenda! ;)

  37. My experience with appliances is that the ones with all the bells & whistles don't last, so I keep it simple. My favorite coffee maker is my little four cup Mr. Coffee. No timer, nothing fancy, it just makes a good cup of coffee.

  38. I have a coffee pot I got from Wal-Mart sometime ago that makes the coffee into a thermal pot and we love it but I also have an old fashioned peculator that I use in the motorhome as we sometimes do dry camping (no hook ups) and I actually prefer the coffee it makes!

  39. Such good news about your PT and you are walking on it. That is a long PT session, too. You must be exhausted by the time you get back home. So glad you tried Judy's doctor. We actually use a Mr. Coffee, but we make strong coffee in it. My daughter loves her French Press, and indeed, the coffee from there is wonderful.

  40. Glad you are progressing since your surgery. I have a Mr Coffee 12 cup coffee maker and a Brew n Go one cup by Black and Decker. I also have a 4 cup Mr Coffee maker at my daughters for when I visit there. All of these serve me well. I like the one cup size for either coffee or tea through the day. The water gets very hot and it has it's own take along mug. I wish you luck with your new coffeepot.

  41. This is encouraging progress! Keep up the good work. I was in a boot for most of last year. Now I understand the simple joy of a walk or taking stairs one by one, because I will never forget crawling to go to the bathroom and not being able to walk normally, take a shower or fix something to eat because I could not bear the pain of getting up. . I will always go down steps one by one hanging onto the rail. The consequences are to high not to be super careful. I will never do many things I did before in life, because the risk to a foot is not worth it. Be very careful with your progress, take it slow, however frustrating. I know you will have life without the boot again and without pain.

    My Brother uses the same Melitta coffee style every day and he likes the simplicity of it. I have a old 12 cup Cuisinart that has lasted me about 10 years . No rhyme or reason why these darn appliances choose not to work sometimes.
    I switched to tea only and bought a electric kettle. it simplified my life and my kitchen counter. Its also much cheaper!

    I appreciate every step, every day without pain and those with pain, every day that I can get out of bed, be alive and experience this life. I lost 12 relatives in a row and recently my Mom and Brother and 19 year old cat so I can honestly say that I see each day of life is a gift.

  42. Sounds like you have a good therapist, a good motivator. Sounds like things are getting better and you will be walking again without that boot.

    About that Melitta: is this the one with a cone that you pour boiling water through? It makes the best coffee, IMHO. I used it for years (I drink decaf) but then my husband discovered it makes better coffee, and he conscripted it. I now use our old reliable Braun electric drip pot. It makes good coffee, too.

  43. I feel like we have been on this foot/leg journey with you from the beginning, that makes me love you and pray.. And yes, I appreciate all of my limbs! Congrats on the progress!

    I am the queen of coffee maker, vacuum cleaners and toaster disasters. Do you send in the warranties? I'm sure you do, smart girl. We use Bunn...have for 15 years. The water refills in the canister where it stays warm til your next pot. it take literally 3 minutes to make a 12 cup pot of coffee, and I'm the type who needs a few sips immediately!! Good luck.

    Jane xxx

  44. Hi Brenda, so glad to hear you are making progress with your footnand PT is going well. I know it is a good feeling to regain some strength walking. I broke my ankle in 2006 and it was a long summer that year, but the good news I did not need surgery however I too walked with a boot for awhile till it was stronger. After healing, for a long time I felt like I was going to fall again. It took a long time to get over that and all I did was step off the porch and went down.
    Yes we have so much to be thankful for. Everyday the little things make all the difference.

    Good luck on the coffee pot. I had the Kcup coffee maker and half the time it didn't work right. Went back to the Cuisinart and happy with it. I don't know anything about the one you ordered. Hope you have good luck with it and a great cup of coffee!

    Love your darling little jar with the tree scene.
    Have a nice weekend.

  45. My favorite way of making coffee is with a percolator. We had a 60's-era GE percolator that was wonderful, but it eventually wore out. We got a new percolator (don't remember the brand) but it wouldn't get very hot. So right now (until we find another vintage percolator) we are using a little four-cup Mr. Coffee from the 90's. We also have a French press, and what I call a cowboy coffee pot -- the kind you use over a campfire or on top of the stove. My husband likes to make some powerful brew in it every now and then. We also have a little $10 one-cup-at-a-time drip maker we got at a dollar store that makes a pretty decent cup. We got it for when we were moving and had to stay a few nights in budget motels, and you can't be sure there will be a coffee maker in the room.

  46. I'm glad you're making progress and I'll remember to be thankful today when I walk. I wanted a melitta coffee maker myself, but it was a tad expensive for my wallet in the end of the year! I'm going to let you try it to see if I'm missing anything by not buying it!


I always enjoy reading your comments and having you join the conversation here at Cozy Little House. It is like having a gathering of friends sitting in my cozy apartment. Enjoying coffee and dessert, chatting and having a good time. I appreciate each and every one of you!

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