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Saturday, January 30, 2010

Inside Is The Place To Be

Vincent has been charmingly occupying the top of the microwave - he has a clear view of the Great Outdoors, yet none of the discomfort actually going outside might bring. He has done a few trials runs but on the whole prefers to stay in until May or so. Pearl doesn't care and will stay out in the freezing temps until one of you dies - and it will be you as she's so busy crazy running she never gets cold. I am more tired of the dark than anything else. Since I get up super early I have time in the morning to read a bit, I unearthed my book light a couple of weeks ago. That way when Miss Pants is busy doing her Squirrel Patrol I can sit on the stone wall and read (I'm reading Stephen King presently) - but even that gets a bit tiresome as I have to adjust that tiny circle of light constantly as it doesn't quite cover both pages. But it works and that's all that matters. I have to get over to the drug store today sometime - I've been having a reaction to the Murphy's Oil Soap - my hands are still red, itchy and blistered after a week - Dermarest helps a lot but I ran out of it last night. I'm still trying to get the charts done for the audit, even that has become a forced march because the office continues to be crazy busy - I keep telling myself two more weeks. I'm going into the office to do half a day today - I don't want to, but I will as it will make it easier next week. I just can't do it while the phones are ringing and I'm dealing with this, that and everything else that comes down the pike. Another week like last week and I might ask Vincent to push over so I can sit on the microwave and watch the Great Outdoors from my safe and quiet perch.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Breakfast At Tiffanys

We did watch Breakfast At Tiffany's the other day - I didn't watch it because it was a classic, or it had Audrey Hepburn - and it had surprisingly little to do with Tiffany's. I watched because it was made in 1961 which would be the year I was born. It was hilarious watching Holly Golightly who was a kept woman - sort of. There was no actual sex for either of the main characters, but it was inferred throughout the movie. We did not like the part where she put the cat out of the taxi (can you ride around NYC taxi with a loose cat??), not to mention anyone that has had a colonoscopy will not associate GoLightly with a NY socialite. Although I suppose both will keep you on your toes! This of course has gotten me musing - I will be 49 in April this year - 20 years ago I would have considered that old, now I've moved my sights up to what I consider old. I'm guessing when I'm 80 I'll be glad I'm not old like all those ninety year olds. The thing I always loved about my very geriatric patients were when they would talk about their pasts - being raised in mountain family, coal mining camps - and I then came to the conclusion - I am getting to that age. Because I can remember Nixon, the first president to be impeached, Title Nine, landing on the moon. A TV with 3 channels and an antenna you had to spin outside while someone sat in yelling A LITTLE MORE, A LITTLE MORE, THAT'S..... TURN IT BACK. The first video game system that we played endlessly (Pong) and though we were so space age. We did have a rotory phone and the microwave was the size of a small washer - did you know this year the microwave has been around for 60 years? I can't believe it either. I can still remember my Aunt Karen wowing us with her first microwaved Thanksgiving Turkey, cooked but ghosty white. Of course there were the other things that were not so good - the Vietnam war, Agent Orange, DDT but I suppose every generation takes the good with the bad. And I guess movie wise, the film was grainy, the outfits were overdone and the acting was certainly no where near real - but I have to say I enjoyed it. The idea of being in NY and doing whatever you want, not to mention that enormous black hat with the trailing yellow ribbon - it made you kind of wish the still made movies like that.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Now For The Second Half.

You might have noticed at some point that when I put up pictures of the house, it's only one floor. The upstairs was far worse than the downstairs - after we got rid of the carpet downstairs and David washed down the walls - there really wasn't an odor at all. And aside from being outdated, it was in pretty good condition overall. I wonder if the previous occupant didn't stay downstairs and let the cats have the upper level - if you had to heat with a kerosene heater you can shut off a livable area down there and given the black soot that came off the ceiling, I might be right. This weekend I took a bucket of hot water with Murphy's Oil Soap and had at the paneling. I just wish I'd taken a before picture - it took a couple of buckets and a lot of elbow grease but the paneling perked up immediately and after I got that layer of dirt and soot off of it - it looks probably like it did the day it went up. We're going to keep it, it's REAL wood, not the plastic or pressed paneling. I threw out a black trash bag of junk and vacuumed, all of the flotsam is still here and there, plus the exercise equipment but you can walk around down there now. The other half where the bar was David has put up a door and taken down the walls in there, reconfiguring the entire area, that will have to wait until spring. We kept the second small bedroom and that will eventually be another guest bedroom - the main reason we're keeping it if for resale value of course, a 3 bedroom is much more saleable than a 2 bedroom, even if that 3rd bedroom is more suitable to hamster than a human. Work has hit high gear, we're having our first internal audit - as of the end of February I will be there a year - so everyone is hysterical and running around. The charts a disaster, we're VERY short staffed but I'm just getting through this part of the program before sitting down and figuring out whether I'm really a good manager or if I'd like to go back and be a visit nurse. Because we've been short staffed I've had to start doing patients again - and I miss it. I didn't realize how much I missed it until I had a group to manage and I feel comfortable again. I know part of it is in times of stress we head back to our comfort zone, where we know what we're doing and have confidence in it. So I'm putting that on the back burner for now and just getting through this part of week.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

January Rain. Eww.

We're experiencing a warm spell - in the 40's - it's a little unnerving. First off the mud from all the melt off is a bit much, everything is sloppy wet. But I think the killer part is your head starts thinking It's Spring! You breath deep when you go out the front door, start thinking about cleaning up the yard, maybe opening a window and letting that fresh air in. But we all know in a day or so, the temps will plummet, the mud will freeze solid and the driveway will resume being a sheet of ice again. But I plan on enjoying it until it breaks - spring is not so far away anymore, is it? I'm trying to get back on my diet, it's so hard to stop eating crap! We keep saying we'll stop and then someone brings home doughnuts or cookies and here we go again. I was good last night, but I did have cake at work so that kind of negated the whole thing. But I've started exercising in the morning again so that's a start. I'm 2/3 of the way through the shawl I'm knitting. I try to work on it every evening, at least a couple of rows. I got a pass for the clubhouse so I can use the pool on the weekends, now I just need to find the time to go!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Changing Of The Guard

My CRV has been starting to fail for awhile now - between the high mileage and the suspicious sounds the transmission has been making, it was time for a newer model. We'd started hunting around a few weeks ago, even though I'm sure I would've gotten a couple more months, I didn't want to wait until something blew and I HAD to buy right then and there. You get a better deal if you retain ability to walk off the car lot if there's no good deal being offered. So David went sifting through the used cars, you name it - he looked at it. We always buy a couple years used, cars depreciate so fast it's just not worth the extra money. I think I bought a new car once, that was enough for me - I drive like crazy so when I had to trade it in a year or so later, I wasn't even in Blue Book Range for a trade in. I got another CRV - given the fact I bought mine used and I put 170,000 hard miles on it, drive over hill and dale with only minor repairs, well, I just couldn't find anything I liked better. At the moment I've taken it out a couple of times, I have to do visits this weekend (what else is new??) which leads me to the next issue. I'm the only one that can do pediatrics and it's like being teased - I miss doing visits and I really miss the kids. Which is kind of odd because everyone knows I don't like kids. But I enjoy peds, go figure that one out. So I am once again sitting back and contemplating, with Vincent the Cat peering at me as if he's trying to help me figure it out. He's actually trying to figure out if there will be anymore cat treats in the offering today, but it's pretty much the same concerned face, so I'll do my own interpretation. Sometimes I just don't know if I'm cut out for management, sometimes I know I am. I guess it just depends on the day and how tired I am.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The End Of Vacation

That's right - last day and then it's back to work tomorrow. This has been a very nice, low key vacation, just the way I like it. I went off by myself yesterday and took advantage of the winter clearances, just poking about. David is finally on the mend, he had a horrible sinus infection that traveled to his ear and jaw - the antibiotics are finally kicking in and today was the first day in a week he feels better. The weather remains bitterly cold but it is winter -and I do have to start looking for a new car. My car has been revving between gears and David spoke to our mechanic who confirmed the transmission is indeed going. He advised that we not even think about replacing it - he said lowball estimate would be over $2000 and since the car has well over 200,000 miles it just isn't worth it. Stinkin thing. But we have a little time so this weekend I'll start looking and David is going to talk to the guy at Enterprise - I was surprised too. We had rented a car for me to drive to Janet's and when we returned it David was chatting with the rep - and he told David they sell the used rental cars after they get so many miles on them. They have a warranty and are a good price so David is looking into that too. Harry called and said they've shown the house this week, he didn't hear anymore than that, but it's promising that the market is (hopefully!) picking up for us. Having a renter takes a load off of us, aside from the rental money just having someone in the house and it not sitting empty is a relief, but I would really rather just be done with the whole thing.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Week In Review.

The train thing worked out exceptionally well - we'll be employing it again. Not only is there a train station near Ray, there's a train station near Aunt Janet who just had knee surgery and Aunt Diane who did not have knee surgery and has been stuck for the laundry for the past few weeks. Speaking of which we also had a moment of silence when Navy boy was discussing his wardrobe. Now, to back up a little, I've always believed children resemble their parents because it's hard to strangle someone who looks just like you. At the start we had called Adam on Monday to see when he was coming in. He told us Tuesday BUT then went on to tell us: he still had no debit card and no access to the Internet at that time. So he was with a friend and he was going to the bank, withdrawing cash and giving it to friend #2 to deposit in his account. Then was heading to friend #1's place and they would find a reservation on perhaps a train, perhaps a donkey - whatever was available. THEN they would call friend #2 with the details and he would pay for and make the reservation and then call Adam back. The fact that it was Monday mid morning and none of this had actually gone further than a discussion bothered no one but the aforementioned parent. David cut to the chase and used some of Adam's Christmas money up here and our debit card and Voila! a ticket was had. Now we were discussing this over dinner and Adam was telling us he had slept over the friend's house on Monday as he lives near the train station, but hadn't wanted to go back to the base to pack. SO they ran across the street to the local thrift shop, Adam purchased enough clothing for the week and a suitcase for $25 AND THAT'S WHAT HE WORE FOR THE WEEK. I'm not kidding and I'm still laughing - I wish I had a camera for the look on our faces when he relayed THAT story. He even got a pair of sneakers for $2, no one was brave enough to visit the underpants and sock question. I have to admit I've never considered getting an entire wardrobe out of the Salvation Army Store to save myself a trip just because I didn't feel like it. And this is also why we have children - because they will forever keep you open to new ideas and options, no matter how bizarre they may be.

Friday, January 8, 2010

La Boy

A good time was had by all in New Jersey as you can see by the pictures. The train thing certainly has it's advantages. We made the reservation for the return trip from Parkesburg which is where Aunt Janet and Aunt Diane live, he's not able to visit everyone with his short stay, but at least with the train thing we can arrange to go see some people. The only thing that's worrying of course is the weather this time of year, it snowed a bit last night and I see they are talking snow again tomorrow, but it's not predicted a lot. I'm renting a car, it's not a very long trip but with the age of my car, the weather and David being sick we decided it was better to bite the bullet and rent than face my possibly breaking down and being stuck a hundred miles away. Adam and I had a good time yesterday, we went out to eat breakfast and then hit the stores. We bought some DVDs and watched Coraline after dinner - I was a little shocked as it is supposed to appropriate for children but it's a pretty dark movie. Especially the part about pulling out your eyes and sewing in buttons. We also heard from Jackson - he's still in port but not for long I think. He's been having dental issues, he seems to have inherited my teeth so he sees a lot of the dentist these days. Adam dodged that bullet - 26 years old and has never had a cavity. But overall, everyone seems to be doing well. Vincent the cat has become a House Cat these days, he went out a few days ago, huddled by the side of the house and then shot back in as soon as the door opened. He had to sit in the cabinet for a little while to get over it and that was the end of that, I think until April it's litter pans and the couch for him.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Last Train To Pennsyltucky

Adam is currently hanging out in NJ with David and Ray - he's here but not for as long as I'd like. But I'll take what I can get. He took the train this time, getting a flight on such short notice proved too difficult and too expensive and really - since you now have to arrive at the airport hours early it really wasn't that much of a time difference. The closest train station also turned out to be right next to Ray so that was a very good thing. David left yesterday morning and visited, they picked Adam up at 5 and they headed straight out to dinner. Work is finally a breather, the holidays are over and I'm on vacation after today. We have an ad for more employees and I had time to do something other than run for once. And my stuff from Knitpicks finally came - whoo hoo!! There was a delay in weather, then there was the wrong address, etc - and we all know how patient I am. But it came last night so I had something to play with. Pearl was bad - when David's not here her idea of protecting the house is Random Barking - by 11 I was a bit murderous to say the least. She finally quit it after I made it clear her life WAS in danger, not to mention there was a free pillow (I'll just flip it before David gets home - he'll never know). As you can see I'm currently knitting another shawl, I seem to be stuck on shawls and socks. I think I'll be doing a sweater next. I have to get back to exercising and not eating crap - David and I have been just awful lately, one of us is as bad as the other. We're like a pair of ten year olds with money, if one of us doesn't buy crap the other one does. And it's so easy to fall right back into it, isn't it? Crap is fun, easy and always available. You don't have to do anything to it, it requires no prep, no heat, all you have to do is pull off the wrapper and you're good to go. But we have to stop - I finally got on the scale yesterday and I haven't gained back all of the weight, but I'm well on my way.