Heat therapy or retail therapy?

It didn't take me long to break my promise of featuring items from the Andalucia eBay launch every day. But see, I have an excuse. I'm suffering from what I can only describe as carpal tunnel syndrome... or at least that's what I think it might be. I haven't actually been to the doctor (and I'll explain why in a bit) but I have this shooting pain that starts in the area between my thumb and index finger and shoots all the way up my arm almost to my elbow. It aches badly even as I type this but I just felt like I needed to do something productive after spending an entire day slouching on the couch with my hand slathered in IcyHot, wrapped in gauze and stuffed under a heating pad (I don't even know if these are the correct things to do but they seem to help!)

I haven't used a computer mouse in months. Since I got my new Wacom Tablet I've used the stylus exclusively and I used to brag to others that this was more ergonomically friendly than a mouse because you hold it just like you would a pencil or pen. Well, I've had this pain now for 3 whole days and it's only getting worse. I even switched back to a mouse, after Jon's insistence, but it's not feeling any better. Mom thinks it's my body telling me I work too hard... whateva!

To add insult to injury, the frigid temperatures in this frozen tundra we live in aren't helping my physical (or mental) condition at all! My kids have been out of school for 3 days now and it's driving us all batty. We haven't left the house since Tuesday and I've been living in my PJs this whole time. You know, sometimes a girl just needs to put on a pretty outfit and some make-up to feel ... well... girly.

Today (3rd day in the bunker, a.k.a. home) the kids were fighting and screaming so I had the brilliant idea (NOT!) to go outside and make snow angels & stuff. It took us 20 minutes to get into our snow gear! We layered up big time. I made sure my bad hand was nicely wrapped up. Well, as soon as we walked out the back door our noses turned beet red. We didn't even last 3 minutes before Sydney started crying because she was too cold. We ran back inside and soaked our hands in lukewarm water. I checked the temps and it was 0° with a windchill factor of -14°. All you Minnesotans are probably thinking Wimps!, but this Florida mama and her Florida baby chicks think these are inhuman conditions to live in. brrrrrr...


So, if you're experiencing sub-zero temps like we are, the best cure in my book is some good ol' retail therapy of the online variety (well, unless your shopping fingers are malfunctioning at the moment like mine).

Check out these cool items for women & the home I found while browsing the Andalucia launch on eBay:

Easter baskets (or cute purse or home decor) by *ladesigns*

Ribbon Key Fobs (many styles to choose from) by girlygirl*bowtique:

Custom Camera Bag by priddy*creations:

Original painting by sweetimaginations:

Mommy & Me aprons by one*boy*one*girl*boutique:

Decoupage Mommy Jeans by surfermomkelly:

Sewing Machine Cover by nanabobana!:

Incognito wallet by grahamcrafters:

Oh, and yes, I did list a couple of pillows (didn't wanna miss out on all the fun):


WOW, that was painful! OK, now I really gotta go rest my hand. If any of you know of any home remedies for carpal tunnel syndrome, please share with me. I'm going back under the heat for now...


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Oh Patty! I feel your pain...literally! I think I too have carpal tunnel...from excess computer use of course! I have numbness that starts in my fingers & goes up to almost my elbow, not as much pain as just annoying numbness & tingling, grrrr! It happens almost every single morning (as I type, type away every single day!), & it doesn't go away until noonish?! I haven't seen a doc either, but am assuming that it is carpal tunnel. I sure hope your hand feels better soon sweetie! At least you have all of those gorgeous Andalucia listings to browse through while in your pj's! We are getting down to 12 degrees here in "Hotlanta" tonight, we haven't been this cold in 5 years...brrrr! Send some of your snow down here, but only for a day, as my girls will be fighting too, if it lasts much longer than that, lol! Take care!

  3. I had to delete my first comment (same as above) just had to make sure to spell "carpal tunnel" correctly! Ugh, I need some sleep, lol!!



  4. I would ice, the nerve and surrounding area gets inflamed and icing will reduce the inflammation, heat will make it worse. I had carpal tunnel from doing nails for ten years and I would stretch my hand, ice and take ibuprofen to reduce swelling.

  5. Anonymous9:48 PM

    I had or thought I had carpal tunnel and I went to my Chiropractor. Totally helped. Now if I feel it coming on, I get my wrist and elbow adjusted and I am good to go. Oh and they also used a tool called grastin which stripped the muscle causing the tightness. Chiropractors are great!!!

  6. I recommend icing as well. I had it a few years ago (legal secretary/paralegal for 10 years and did nothing but type). I ended up buying an ergonomically correct keyboard and have not had the problem since then.

    I hope it gets better. I know how painful it can be!


  7. Anonymous9:50 PM

    One more side note: Doctors will want you to get on meds and get surgery. I wanted neither, so that is why I tried a Chiropractor. It is always worth a shot.

  8. Patty, I had carpal tunnel and went to the acupuncturist, he did wonders. I went for 2 treatments, and didn't have any problems for a year. Then my wrist started bothering me again, so I went back for 2 more treatments,,,,and NOW I have not had any problmes for almost 2 years! I highly reccommend it..my insurance didn't pay for it, but it was worth not having surgery.
    P.S. Thanks for sharing all the GROOVY things being made with your fabric,,,,it must make you smile! I totally GET your snow....I live in south eastern Idaho, altitude 4800...we have snow, ice, WIND and I can hardly wait until I am "Old enough" to go south for the winters! Love your blog!

  9. ice, motrin and stretching out that wrist.

  10. Patty I hope your hand feels better. The cold weather was one of the reason we moved to Florida. Hubby and I hate the cold weather. It is now 50 outside and I think that is too cold. Yes I'm a Wimp.

  11. If it is numb and also shooting pain it could actually be something pinched in your neck or back... I had this happen recently with the numbness and pain in my toes (the culprit was actually my neck). Just an idea, and a good excuse to go get a massage, a good one can work miracles!

  12. Patty, I feel your pain...the wrist pain could be any number of things but it takes so long to heal because you are always using it. I saw a doctor and had surgery, meds,etc and can't say that was the best decision. I like the idea of seeing a chiropractor. I think that makes good sense. Kids and cold weather... I SO feel your pain. Mine have been home since Wednesday last week and are out Monday and Tuesaday for the holiday and inservice. It's like Christmas vacation all over again! And yesterday, windchill had us at -27'. I paid them to do housework. Kept busy all day and then I let them shop online at American girl and make wish lists! All girls at any age love retail therapy!! Hope your wrist heals soon...

  13. I would skip the ICYHOT/heating pad and try a quality wrist brace instead... one that will keep your wrist straight but allow your fingers to move naturally.

  14. I really feel for you, too! After 6 years of owning and operating a frozen yogurt shop and swirling that yogurt into cups, I could no longer stand the pain and had carpal tunnel surgery done - unfortunately that was what I had to do but it worked! Good luck, Patty!

    luvnstitches, nancy

  15. I feel for you, Patty! After 6 years of owning and operating a frozen yogurt shop and swirling frozen yogurt into cups I finally had to do something about my carpal tunnel, too. I had the surgery - not fun but it worked!

    luvnstitches, nancy

  16. I want to thank everyone who has shared their experiences and suggestions to alleviate carpal tunnel syndrome. I am so sorry so many of you have experienced it too. It is definitely a debilitating condition. I have read everything about icing the area, so all of you are correct about that. However, when I ice it, it seems to hurt more and my hands feel totally numb but when I apply heat, it alleviates the pain and I can work. Hmmm... this leads me to believe that it may not be carpal tunnel after all... it could be like an early onset of arthritis (it DOES run in my family) or maybe just a pinched nerve/tendon? I don't know. I will definitely try to see a doc next week.

    Also, thanks to all of you who suggested seeing a chiropractor. My sister and brother-in-law are both chiropractors but unfortunately they live in FL so I can't seek their help right now. If the pain persists, I'll probably see a local chiro here.

    Thanks again to all who commented! :)


  17. Hi Patty, I'm sending you warm wishes from sunny Florida ;)
    First, Thank You for showing off my Mommy & Me apron set. The Andalucia fabric is simply gorgeous!
    As for the carpal tunnel, try a wrist brace to ease the pain and when you do need to use a mouse make sure your mouse pad has a rest for your wrist.
    Take Care & Stay Warm,

  18. Anonymous6:41 PM

    one more comment, I had what sounded like the same thing but was told I had tendonitis, I went through lots of different therapy and wrist brace and the thing that helped me was a cortisone shot about 3 1/2 months ago and the pain was gone almost imediatly even canceled the second shot that was scheduled.

  19. Hi Patty!
    I'm so sorry to hear of your pain. I have the same pain in my right wrist/arm and it was getting to the point that it was keeping me awake at night. So I went to the doctor and she said it is NOT carpal tunnel -- it's basically tendonitis (sp?). The tendons are irritated and inflamed and that's what is causing the pain. If you have carpal tunnel the main sensation would be numbness due to the lack of circulation. She gave me some anti-inflammatory pills - and I just took a half a pill for about two weeks and it did the trick. Now I just have to make sure I don't stay on the computer for too long -- I mix up my work to make sure I'm not doing the same task continually for a long time.
    Wishing you well!!

  20. everything is beautiful!
    14 below?~ You could have gotten frostbite!

  21. Oh, Patty! You poor thing! Sounds like you've got a bad case of tendonitis. I feel your pain, as I've had it loads of times and do have carpal tunnel, too.

    Get thyself a brace for your hand and wrist. You can get them at the drugstore. Brace your wrist during the day and leave it off at night. Keep applying ice (15 mins on, max) at regular intervals throughtuot the day, and take Ibuprofen for pain and swelling.

    You can also try massage and acupuncture. Works wonders!

    PS: Jeepers! I'm Canadian and I can't believe how freezing it looks where you are. *shiver*

  22. Patty I had this same thing last year. It is painful. I just let it rest the best I could for awhile and then I bought a wrist brace to use when I knew I would be doing a lot of cutting or typing. It did help.Give it a try.
    Hope it heals quickly.

  23. Ooh, ouch. I get those same pains when I get the jones to do a hardcore knitting marathon. That and when I play a little too much Guitar Hero. ;)

  24. LOL on the weather! I have been in the fridgid temps as well. You think living in Alaska for 3 years I would be fine with it. No once you leave and get use to midwest temps again this below zero thing doesn't fly.
    Well stay warm and hope the wrist is doing better.


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