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Monday, January 31, 2005

Room With A View

David's almost got the new room upstairs completed, he's down to odds and ends. I put up two of the old photos so you could see the big difference. We've decided eventually when we find the furniture it'll have a day bed in it and will be used as an extra family type room. The cats find it very intriguing and spend time investigating it, trying to act mysterious and so forth. The other morning when got up the water pressure was crap-o-la,  the shower was like a gentle drizzle.In the winter there are two things I hate to do without, water and heat - just the thought of it is miserable. But just as suddenly it started, the pressure returned much to my relief. When we went out later we discovered the reason was a large burst pipe down the road, of course I was without my camera! - the frozen waters flooding the woods and (eek!) someone's vacation home were quite spectacular. We're supposed to get some nice weather this weekend - I'll be working so I don't care. David heard on the weather it will be in the 40's and he's clutching to that particular weather report like it's Nostrudamas's predictions. Considering they change the report more often than Cher changes looks I'll be hiding when the fallout hits! I worked a twelve hour last night, from what I can tell they just offered 12 hour shifts to get more nurses to sign on so twice a week they try to think of things for me to do for 4 hours. Last night I got sent up to the 4th floor to help out and I don't mind it. It's actually fun to be the "helper", you don't have any true responsibility and everyone's happy to see you coming. Like other places I've worked no one seems to like to put in IV's so I did that - I enjoy it. I had a patient with dementia who asked if I minded if he called me "beautiful woman" - as far as I'm concerned when dealing with that population they can call me whatever they want as long as they don't whap me. Then he informed me his wife was MY SAME AGE, then just as cheerfully declared the aide passing by was his girlfriend and I was to keep an eye on her - amusing the aide to no end. The supervisor also stopped by to tell me I was taking a post op patient on ICU and during all this I was putting in the IV, sometimes I think being a nurse pushes the limits of multi-tasking. The last picture I posted was my new pink suede boots that I got for $14 - yes,they are a strange color but they're warm and waterproof so I guess I can put up with the color (they were originally $80).I'm sure the drastic drop in price had less to do with the quality and more to do with the strange color!

Friday, January 28, 2005

Butt Mom!!.....

Things I have discovered about Pennsylvania:

"Minus 7" is not a math problem. It is a tempeture

"Hat hair" isn't necessarily a bad thing at times.

There are some days when you don't really care if you have hat hair or not.

When the roads ice, downhill is WAY scarier than uphill.

Jackson's been to school on time for two days now with no delays which is a record at this point in time. Work's been going pretty good, in the past week I've worked on 3 different floors - my shoes and I have yet to be on the same floors at the same time. Everyone leaves thier shoes at work and I do mean everyone! They have shoe racks on all the floors just for this and with the cold weather it makes sense. I bought a pair of shearling lined suede boots which I'm never without at this point. I've been floating the hospital all week but I don't mind as it gives me an opportunity to meet everyone and really, so far everyone has been so nice! There's the usual bit of gossip here and there of course, but none of it especially mean which is encouraging. A lot of the patients are from outlying areas so it's giving me quite a bird's eye view on the area. Oh, and my digital camera recovered from it's injury, it just started working on it's own again and I'm glad about that. I was not looking foward to spending $150 (and up) for a new one. I'm very careful with it now!



Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Portrait Of A Bad Cat

That bad cat Vincent broke my digital camera last night! I'd been using it and left it on the coffee table and when I got up this morning it was lying on the floor with the batteries popped out. When I take a picture all I get is black with streaks of color. I contacted Kodak and that could be caused by someone (or some cat!!) dropping it. Sigh, so we're in the market for a new one I suppose. And I'm also having problems with EZPass, can you believe it? David lost his credit card a few months ago so we had to cancel and get new ones which changed the account. I hadn't used my EZPass until last month so I get a letter saying my credit card won't allow them to charge it so my pass is invalid. I filled out the paperwork thinking things were OK and THEN I get a letter from the credit card co. telling me they can't allow it. Seems my new address on the my bank checks (physical address) don't jive with the new address on my credit card account so they won't allow me to use it. I can't remember my PIN # for the pass or my old credit card account number so I can't do anything over the phone - it's trouble all around. David is doing battle with Waste Management again, we keep getting this bill for $64 that we don't owe - we thought it had been cleared up since we'd spoken to them in March of last year and they'd said we didn't owe it. Then we get told they sent a bill to our old address in July(??) and since we didn't answer they gave it to a collection agency. Since it's now January that makes no sense at all. It's still snowing, Jackson had the whole day off today as a change of pace from having two hours off. Jackson said the delays work because what they do is shorten up all the classes so they get the full day in. I'm off to work tonight but off for the weekend!

Monday, January 24, 2005

Is It Cold Enough For Ya!

The tempetures have been holding pretty steady in the 1 to 3 degree range. I just LOVE shouting after David, "SO, IS IT COLD ENOUGH FOR YA?" because he makes a very not nice face when I say that. We have tons of icicles hanging off the back of the house which is nifty and adds a tiny element of danger. We got about a foot of snow from that last storm, not too bad considering what other people got.  Work has been going pretty good, I was floated up to the med-surg floor last night and got to meet some more people. And I get paid on Wednesday so there is that. I'm still knitting that poncho, but am making some progress on it. Things have been pretty slow the past few days, Jackson still heads out to school ten-ish almost every morning. The roads are kept plowed but they tend to ice up over night which is why the constant delays for school. Animals are fine, Vincent has not attempted any more treks outside since last week, he prefers to sit on the little table in front of the window and watch the world go by where he's warm and dry.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

How Cold Is Cold?

I suspected the temps had dropped when I went out to clean the windows of my car and the Windex froze on contact. My suspcions grew when I noticed my uncanny ability to walk on top of the snow without breaking it. We don't have to call the dogs in anymore as they do thier business about 10 feet away from the deck and are at the back door almost before they left! It was minus six again when we got up this am but it's warmed up to about  - 2 degrees now. I'm a bit worried about driving to work tonight as the snow is supposed to start falling late afternoon and I'm working the 11-7. I got a schedule for work and they do a fairly decent job of it. My weekends are Fridays and Saturdays so I've got real weekends off. I'm relieved to be back on an every other weekend off work schedule. Being off every weekend gets a bit tiring since it leaves me free to chauffer Mr. Jackson around and I don't seen to be able to get anything more than that done. We've spotted him talking to another kid on his bus so he is making friends despite all his claims of Lone-Wolfness and so forth. Adam's also fine, out to sea again which is not sitting well with him. He's been seeing a girl and from what we know she goes to college and he hasn't been hanging around the bars so I think we can safely put her in the "nice" girl column of life. All the animals are fine of course, this morning they're all piled around the woodstove. We just wade past them once in awhile to throw another log on - if one of them died you'd never know it since they don't move at all. David been keeping busy finishing his room upstairs and he's slated to start an addition in March so he's been keeping busy with that. I'm still knitting that poncho - I'm on the 2nd half - and managed to find a skein of yarn that matches the burgandy. I bought a ton of yarn on clearance but the downside is if I run short I can't just go buy another skein since most of it has been discontinued. My only other altenative's the internet, I did find the exact yarn I needed but it would've cost about $9 to buy it. That would've negated any savings from buying it onsale, not to mention havingt to wait for it. And we all know how patient I am!!

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Winter has finally arrived in true form in our neck of the woods. We got another 4 or 5 inches with more predicted over the weekend. It's a lot like Syrucuse here weather wise, it's not only that you get snow, it's that it never melts between bouts so it just continuly piles up. Jackson has another 2 hour delay this morning so he'll be heading off to school around 10 or so. The cats are content to stay in, Vincent got very brave the other day and went outside for a good two and a half minutes.  He was fun to watch in any case, he was walking on the deck with exaggerated steps in an effort not to touch the snow, he looked like he was swimming. I made him come in the house and he was more than happy to oblige. The other two don't even look at the door, ever since Claw almost got eaten she's shown no desire to go out and Mr. Lee's not allowed in any case. I've got work tonight and tomorrow and then after that I don't know - I'll probably get my permenent schedule by friday. Either that or I'm off for the winter!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Snow-body Snows The Trouble I've Seen.

Since it snows here all the way through May (or so!) I'm afraid that gives me free license to use the word "snow" in a variety of ways. This morning the tempeture was six below, but warmed up to a balmly 1 degree as I left for work. Work has been going fairly well, there are a large amount of nurses from NY there, one I  work with grew up in Center Moriches and my preceptor last night grew up in Queens. I'll be off orientation by Friday and will have a schedule by then. Jackson's school got dismissed early which I suspected it would - when I got up at noon the snow was coming down fairly well. I waited for him to call, he didn't so I got in the shower which would be when he called. He had to endure at least 30 minutes of true hardship and even managed to walk about 600 feet before I came and got him. This was due more to talking than snow, but he made the most out of what he considers a distressing situation. All of which was cured with two boxes of girlscout cookies when we got home (yes, it's that time of the year again!). I was a little annoyed that while he was at the bus stop he shared his cell phone so the other kids could call home for rides and then none of the parents offered him a ride home! They're predicting a full foot of snow for Sunday - don't tell David, I want it to be a surprise, LOL!!

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Hmmm. I Suspect A Cold Front.....

.....and a cold backside to boot! Weather report has predicted Monday it will be 2. Degrees that is. We're going to Roman and Anya's for dinner. They're originally from Russia and have invited us over for a barbeque which should be interesting since it's a big 17 degrees outside. I forgot to mention we met the people that bought the house next door, they have 3 boys - 8, 12, and 15 so I guess I can stop cringing since they're older. They're from Staten Island and Irene works for human resources for a home health agency!! They came to bring thier furniture right after it snowed so David packed down thier driveway for them with his truck and then helped bring in thier stuff. Jackson and I went to the movies today to see Phantom of The Opera which he's been chanting about for a few weeks. It was GREAT, the theater was full which for a Sunday afternoon is saying alot about a movie. We're going to buy the soundtrack tomorrow. David continues to work on his room upstairs, today he's putting a closet in.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Forces Beyond Our Control Are At Work Here

The weather has been wild to say the least. Thursday was in the 50's with rain which led to melting - that would've been A-OK if it was spring. It is not spring. I had to drive to work that night and the fog was unreal - I got to work by following the center line of the road, in some parts it was so bad I couldn't even see that. I was so afraid of losing the road and accidently getting lost. If I had, I would've had to stay there til morning since I don't know the area well enough to find my way back and one wrong turn and you could end up in Canada.  Friday was the high 30's which furthered the melting into flooding AND it started snowing- freezing raining. David turned around and brought Jackson home since the roads were nasty and flooded and he figured there wasn't any school. He figured wrong so Jackson got another free day courtesy of Dad. We then got snow-snow and it was off to work again last night, but the roads were all cleared by then. I've got to say they're pretty good about road maintenance around here. This morning I had a new problem because the temps had dropped back down into the teens and due to all the melting  snow and ice MY ENTIRE CAR WAS FROZEN SHUT. I couldn't even get it unlocked! I did manage to get the back window open and with a bit of tugging got the door open too. So I threw in my backpack and went over the seats - I was off today and was NOT spending it in the parking lot of Wayne Memorial. I put the heat on high and by the time I got home the driver's side was unlocked. David continues on the bedroom upstairs, he's put in two big windows and I'm not sure why since he is married to a Vampire - big windows and I don't get along in the daytime. Between that and  the french doors, not to mention the already-there floor to ceiling window we'll be going broke buying black-out shades. I also got David to cut the back of my hair today, I cut the parts I could reach but not the parts I can't see since that would probably not be a good idea. My hair is so flat and thin I hate to spend time and money on something that takes two minutes at home. So I once again got my hair done in Chez-Kitchen - cheap and convinent and always open. Jackson's busy tending the fire today with Vincent supervising. That aspect if VERY important to the cat!

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Bermuda, Bahamas, Come On Pretty Momma....

David insists on cranking the woodstove at all times lately (possibly related to the last heating bill.....) so the downstairs family room has a tropical atmosphere, you almost expect to see palm trees waving by the workshop. I worked on the PCU unit last night (Progressive Care Unit) - it was very OK. You have to give out your own meds but you only have 6 patients so it's a good trade off. One of the nurses I work with had pictures of her Florida vacation and I thought it was a group shot with Mickey Mouse - but it was just her and her TEN kids, holy toledo Batman! AND she's due in July - since I had trouble dealing with two children almost 7 years apart you just know it boggles my mind. And she works full time! I'm thinking of starting a knitting club here in the hideout, I posted on the hideout website and got a few responses so I'm going to be looking into that next week when things are a bit more settled. This morning was a bit of a rush from work, I'm playing catch-up with job requirements and finally got all my "pre-employment" done. Got my physical in the ER, the doctor down there's very nice but I got a little surprise when she told me she heard a click which is a mitral valve prolapse. That's one of the valves in your heart doesn't shut right, but it's a fairly common and benign condition. I did look it up on the internet and came across a holistic "doctor" website that claimed people with MVP are "wired differently" and are prone to over-reaction to any stress - wow. I have no idea who he might be talking about, I myself NEVER over react. He also claimed they're also more prone to diarherra which I have to say might not be a good thing if you're going to be over reacting to stuff. All my time might now have to be taken up shrieking and pooping. It might be wise not to surprise me. The weather has turned warmer so everything's melting into a sloppy mess right now. I wouldn't mind but I know the temp will drop and we'll have car/ice sculptures again. I finally bought ice skates so maybe I'll get to use them. And school was cancelled again today. Oh well, Aloha from Lake Ariel!

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

They cancelled school again today, the weather was right and it's STILL snowing. It's supposed to turn to rain tonight so I hope the roads dont get too bad as I'm working the 11 to 7 am. Last night was my first on the nightshift and I was relieved to find it was stocked with it's usual cast of characters (including me!) all of whom have personality quirks. It was fun but on the other hand my preceptor and I only had one patient that was fairly stable so it wasn't hard. I finally got a picture of Vincent carrying his toy ball, we found him doing this last week and did a double take when he walked by. If the ball lands somewhere he doesn't like he picks it up and carries it to a better spot, it's very odd to see a cat walking around with a ball in his mouth though.  I found some old pictures of the loft area and posted them so you could see the difference of the past few months. David has been going great guns and has been installing the window overlooking the hourse pasture. He's got all the major stuff done and I figure we have the rest of the winter to finish it. The snow continues to fall, they had predicted 2 -4 inches but I'm thinking it might end up being more.

Saturday, January 8, 2005

And I thought we were in the "sun belt"......

We finally got some snow - 5 inches followed by freezing rain - there's nothing more exciting than driving to work without the benefit of brakes. I especially loved it when the tail-gater attempted to pass me and fishtailed right away which convinced them to stay away. Work has been going well (so far). Small town hospitals can have the best toys since they get  alot more government grants and community funding. They have a calendar of on going in house classes and will accomodate your schedule to them.  I had a patient die on me this week and that lead to Fun And Games in the morgue. We brought the body down but hadn't put the bed up and got the body stuck hanging off the bed. The door opened a crack and it was a guy in a flannel shirt and baseball cap. Turned out he was from the funeral home coming for another body and was happy to help. We found an outlet to raise the bed so we trudled over (everyone hanging on)and there was a sound at the door. You know how it is - you go in the morgue EVERYONE goes in the morgue. But not this time - someone on the other side had locked the deadbolt and the other nurse was pulling at the door so it was REALLY locked. Good thing the supervisor waited before walking away - she thought someone had left it open. So then she came in followed by the director of the funeral home who was wondering what was taking so long......we had quite a crowd going. We got everyone squared away and managed to get  back to the floor before end of shift. The hospital is very small town and when the other nurses read the paper they know all the suspects and victims and can pretty much tell you if they've always been trouble. Jackson's been home most of the week, they cancelled school on Wednesday and Thursday and then 2 our delay on Friday so he considers this a Sucessful Week In School. Animals are all fine of course, David's been using the woodstove alot and we've noticed that Vincent doesn't move a muscle until the last ember has died out. That 2nd picture is exactly how he stays for hour, Outside no longer exists for him. I think he's  sucessfully Made The World Go Away!

Wednesday, January 5, 2005

Cats, cats and more cats!

Mr. Lee has recently started waking us up around 4 am - ish again. We try to ignore her but having a small cat marching up and down your body while meowing is pretty hard. Since I've got to be up early anyhow this week it's not a big deal I suppose. Orientation was the usual - not as bad as others but by 9 am I was wiggling in my seat and clock watching. Today is 8 hours of IV talk and then back on the floor for the rest of the week. The weather is going to change today, we are under a winter storm watch which Jackson has been encouraging - he gloats everytime we watch the weather and feels it's a done deal. They delay school for every little bit of snow we've had so far so he's busy plotting and planning his free time. The people that bought the house next door were out for a couple days last week but we didn't see them, just saw the car in the driveway and lights on. I think they have small children so hopefully they will be just weekenders! I'm a bit more tolerant of small children as long as they're quiet and stay away from me. David continues to work on his loft project, I'll take pictures in a couple days - the sheetrock is up and the doors are in. We are having a bit of an arguement since that area has large windows and a slider and I cannot sleep during the day if the room is going to be lit up like JFK.

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

A Boy And His Cat

The Gestapo called on Saturday morning, they had stopped some strange polish guy at the gate. I told them to go ahead and frisk him, but they were NOT amused - the whole thing was stupid. They see Ray all the time but rules are rules. David told Ray he was lucky they didn't do a cavity search or set the dogs on him. Despite the excitemtn at the gate we had a VERY nice weekend as the temps were in the high 40's to 50's. We went to the indoor flea market, Ray found it very interesting. He also got a good deal on picture frames at AC Moores, they were having a 40% off sale on  them. He does a lot of watercolors so he's always looking for frames. When we go to Dickson City David heads off to Home Depot and we head off to the arts and crafts store. David's been busy building on the loft, it's coming along very fast - he's trying to get as much done before I go on nights which hopefully should be soon. I had my first day of orientation on the floor yesterday - my preceptor was overwhelmed so I just started doing stuff the best I could. I did an admission, called a doctor for verification, transcribed orders and put orders in the computer with no guidance. The preceptor started getting testy with me because she couldn't find the labs in the chart I'd put together - that would be because she had them in her folder, sheesh!! I'll be glad to go back on nights, this day stuff is for the birds. I've got to go to hospital orientation today, IV stuff tomorrow, back on the floor on Thursday. They're calling for bad weather on Wednesday but up in the 50's on Sunday - this weather is crazy

Saturday, January 1, 2005

Happy New Year!

I don't know about you, but I'm glad that's over! I've lived in 3 states, had 4 jobs, acquired a cat, was threatened with a lawsuit, gained some weight and lost some money, all in the space of a year. I get tired just looking at that little list. The only thing I have control over is my weight so I guess  a diet would be in order. The cat is out of control 24/7 so there's no point in even talking about that! Vincent had a wonderful holiday involving the tree, he whapped all the ornaments off of it. We imagined he was a hockey player in a former life as we laid in bed listening to our decorations exploding against the walls (HE SHOOTS AND SCORES!). David decided to take it down yesterday after we walked by  and the entire tree was shaking like an earthquake. Mr. Lee even has a new activity - Bothering Vincent which is a sucessful venture in her book. She's been busy playing on the new loft area, it's an endless source of facsination for her. Jackson desparately needs to get back to school, he beat Fable yesterday by playing it for 6 to 8 hours straight a day and is starting to look like Smeagol. David sent off the last of things Adam forgot - he's doing fine by the way and I think he feels much better about life in general after his trip home. Ray's coming out today, the weather here has been in the 40's and 50's so David invited him out. It's a much easier ride for him than when we lived on LI and with the weather so nice he can come visit later in the year. It'll be fun to celebrate the New Year with him and HOPEFULLY, we can stay in one place!! Happy New Year!