Thursday, February 28, 2008

Life in Progress

I don't have anything earthshattering to write, but thought I would post an update on things in general.
1. The diet is going well. I am ALMOST at 30lbs at 3 weeks. Pretty fabulous actually. And I'm feeling good and it's not be too hard. I just use a lot of cognitive coping.
2.Had to do another overnight shift last night and thought I was doing another one tonight. Turns out someone else is and that is a big relief. I was a bit short in the sleep department. I don't think I was ever meant to be the total night shift person. Evenings is actually ok. I worked 3 to 11 for about 4 years when I was first a nurse, so it's somewhat familiar.
3. We've had family in town over the last month. Very unusual for us as we have't had any around for a really long time. Kind of novel and fun. Had lunch today with my cousin Donald and his wife Patricia from Topeka, Kansas. My Uncle Ronald was here a few weeks ago. He came out to propose to someone!
4. The diet is also good for my pocketbook. It's amazing how much less I spend when I really can't eat much of anything or anywhere.
5. I'm slowly becoming more and more functional on my new Blackberry! It's very fun, I looked up the address of the Heard Museum on the Internet for my cousin today.
6. I'm doing really well in my life drawing class. I had one of the best drawings in class last Monday. Pretty Awesome for me! And this teacher is much more lenient in the grading scale than last semester. I think I might even get an A by the end of class!
7. There are some awfully cute boys on American Idol! Has anybody else noticed that?

Friday, February 22, 2008

All Night Long

I started not feeling very well last night at work. Not sick sick, just tired and had a little crud in the back of my throat. Then Thursday morning, I woke up a little hoarse and I just felt like I had no energy. My whole night sleep pattern was disrupted, because of various work meetings causing me to go in early ect, so I attributed some of it to that. So I started work about 10:30 am on Thursday. I punched out for about an hour to take care of the dogs and then came back into work. I was supposed to leave at 10pm so I could be up early Friday to man a booth at the trauma conference.
Well...when Victoria came in to work with me in the evening, she was quite a bit sicker than I was. She had a sore throat and sounded and looked miserable. She didn't feel like she could call in because there really wasn't anyone to cover. At 10pm I finally convinced her that she should go home and that I would stay. She was very tearful and grateful. There really wasn't a lot of choices because there wasn't anyone else to work. So now it 4am and I've been at work since 10:30AM yesterday. My relief comes in at 6am. I have to give report so will then get out at 6:30. Then I need to rush home and get the stuff for the booth. I'm going to take that to where the conference is and hand it over to my unsuspecting coworker Honey. She will have to try and do the booth around her other obligations there. I should finally get home near 9am. I hope I can go to sleep in the middle of the day like that. I will have been at work almost 24 hours straight. I did that once before, it was actually 26 hours straight. I got sick right after.
Anyway, I'm going a little nuts. I didn't come prepared to be here this long. I've got periodic down time, so I thought I'd write this little entry. Hopefully, I'll get straightened out some point this weekend.....

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Cryyyying Over You

You know those getting to know you lists that folks forward to you over the internet? Things like what is your favorit color, movie, etc. I know one I have gotten several times has said, When did you last cry? The friends who have sent me their answers often said "This morning" or "Last night". I was shocked by that.
Today I got an email from a grade school classmate that said she had cried twice today.
I don't know if I am unusual or if it's because I don't have anybody around to really upset me, but I rarely cry. At least not because of emotional upset. I mean I might get a little teary over a movie or something, but I don't think that really counts. If things are really awful at work I might cry. I used to cry over my friend Geoff pretty often, but not too often now. Probably because he lives in Chicago.
I'd like to think I'm just pretty emotionally stable. At least that's how I feel. So what do you all think?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Okay, we'll know I really need to lose weight. When I was last at my internist's office, the nurse practitioner there referred me to this medical weight loss program. I was very excited. I think I just needed someone to point me in the right direction.
So.. lots of preparation, medical tests ect, later, I finally got started a week ago. It's very strict and structured, but I'm doing so well! That is part of what makes people successful on this diet, is the speed and amount of weight you lose. I have lost 16lbs in the first week. I'm sure it won't always be that fast, but it's a great motivator!
I've been giving away all kinds of food out of my house. I can barely eat anything and I figure a lot of what I have will be too old by the time I'm done. She says that in 14 months, I should be at my goal weight, 140 to 155lbs! Amazing. I haven't weighed that much since sometime in grade school. I still have food to give away if anybody wants some...canned goods, etc.
I'm planning on seeing this through to the end. And I'm so excited because I started thinking of some of the things I could do if I was at that weight. No limits! How exciting that would be. So it's a 60 week diet, with one week down and 59 to go!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Play date or a date?

I've just recently started taking my three dogs to the dog park regularly. It is an interesting place and there are all kinds of rules. As soon as you walk in there is a disclaimer on the gate that basically says if you or your dog are hurt here the city is not to blame. So ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK!
5 feet further in and there is a big sign with all the rules posted. I have discovered that some people are sticklers for the rules and others, not so much.
One rule, that I think is a no brainer, is that no dogs in heat are allowed. Of course there isn't anyone doing a little female check as they come in and so it's an honor system. Last week when I took my 2 neutered males and one spayed female, there was a yorkie there. There weren't any other dogs at the time. She came running up and greeted us as soon as we came in. I sat on bench near the lady who was her owner and we started chatting.
She told me that when she had shown up, there were 3 other yorkies there. For some reason they didn't get along with her dog and there was a lot of growling and dominance play. I gave her my best dog whisperer imitation and talked about packs, etc. Then it came out that her dog was in heat. I told her she really shouldn't have her here, that it can cause all kind of aggresive and erratic behavior. Besides not all dogs (hers for example) are neutered and she could end up pregnant. She didn't seem overly concerned.
Her dog seemed really interested in my dog, Dobbie. He was a stud dog for four years before I got him and had him neutered. She kept following him around and pestered him and pestered him. Pretty soon he got really interested in her and kept trying to make babies. It was embarrassing and rather annoying. The lady said "At least he knows how to do it."
People walking by kept laughing at them, as I kept saying "Dobbie No!" How do you tell him no when it's perfectly instictual and they are off leash running around.
Finally the lady got tired of it and took her home. I was very relieved.
When we went home, Tess and Winston looked like they had a regular play day at the dog park. I couldn't help thinking that Dobbie looked a little smug like he had been on a date!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Deb Maxwell and Destiny

Old Friend

Over 20 years ago, I met Deb Eberle. She was a traveling nurse working with me at Maricopa Medical Center when I was a new grad. We became pretty good friends. I was fascinated with how adventorous she was. She went on a very rough trip to Africa. Was almost arrested in Chad when their vehicle broke down in the middle of the desert. She traded a bar a soap for a hand made bow and arrow with some pygmy's.
She was the nurse at Glacier National Park one summer and washed tour buses on the side to make extra money. After the summer was over, she rode her bike from Glacier to Seattle and then all the way down the Pacific Coast and across to Phoenix. I was in awe of her.
When she left here she went on a medical mission to the Dominican Republic for 12 years. While she was there she met and married her husband and became Deb Maxwell. They adopted a 4 yr old boy from there and then at age 44, she became pregnant and she had Destiny.
I hadn't seen her in 22yrs, but we had exchanged Christmas Cards. I went to see here while in Florida. It's amazing how little she has changed after all these years! Fun to see her!

Bird Watching

Okay, I saw some pretty fabulous birds in Florida too. Some photos for your viewing pleasure:

A Common Egret. It wasn't very common to me. And especially beautiful in flight.

An Anhinga, drying it's wings. They don't have the protective coating that ducks and such have, so they dive in the water for fish and then sit and dry their wings. I saw them just like this all over sunbathing to get dry. It was kind of fun to see them.

This is an Ibis. They were often in groups and walked on top of the water lillies and such, kind of fun.

Flamingos are native to Florida. Pretty cool having birds like this native to where you live, huh?

Here is a common Egret "surfing" on an alligator.

Comorants nesting in a tree. They dive in the water to fish too. They are often called snake birds because when they swim all you see are their heads and necks. In China, people train these birds to fish for them. I saw it on Survivor once too. The put a collar around their neck so they can't swallow the fish and pull it out of them. Gross huh? But ingenious.

Here was some kind of stork. Isn't he funny sitting on his "knees" like that?

And a Peacock. they are always just amazingingly beautiful birds.


I'm finally getting time to work on my blog. I've been busy... but I've got a couple of entries I want to do. First, Gators! I was just in Florida for a week and I was fascinated by the ecosystem and wildlife. I didn't bother with the amusement parks even though I stayed right next to one.

I went to Gatorland and it was very interesting although sometimes creepy. I was ready about someone who had a gator phobia. I don't but then I don't have to get in water where some might be. If I did, I probably would too.

They are the most prehistoric, evil looking critters. They said at Gator land that they have a brain the size of a peanut. I don't know, but this guys were a little sluggish because it had been cold. Interesting to look at, but I didn't want to get too close.

There were little tiny baby gators. They didn't look any nicer than the big gators. I wouldn't want anything to do with these guys either. In the wild, 60% of Baby gators are killed by other gators or animals before the get very big. So I guess that's why they have so many babies. So "farmed" gators aren't eaten by wild animals and so they get "harvested" for other things. They were selling gator tail and gator ribs. I tried the tail. It was breaded and deep fried. It didn't taste like much but tough meat. I just tried about 3 bites. I thought since it was on the menu that other people would have tried it, but the waitress and my friend from there, both thought it was "gross". So...

There were LOTS of adolescent gators. I saw lots of adolescent gator heads that had been "harvested" and were for sale. I have to admit, while I'm not a fan of this practice, I did buy one for my nephew because my sister asked me to.

So then there was the gator wrestling show. They pick a kid out of the audience to choose a gator out to the pond for the guy to "wrestle". Then he pulls him out of the tank by his tail and shows us his mouth, closed and open, etc. He flips him over and puts him into a "sleep" and then wakes him up by tickling him. Interesting. He said the whole gator wrestling thing was from when the "crackers" were farming cows and gators would hide in the watering holes. He said the rancher would tell the hands to get the gators out of the holes.

A couple of days later, I went on a river tour to see manatees. We also saw "wild" alligators. They were really hard to see and even scarier to me because of that. There were quite a few of them and you would just see some eyes and then farther back, some "tire treads" sticking out of the water. I sure don't want to go swimming in Florida!