Wednesday, October 29, 2008

San Diego-Day 3

Today was my whirlwind tour of San Diego. Sorry Rebecky, but LaJolla was not in the cards for this trip. I started on the tour at 2:15 and got back to the hotel at 10pm . . . The tour was great, and here are some highlights. I have to say that I am sooo mad at my camera. We have rechargeable batteries--three of them to be exact and all three were charged before I left. None of them worked for more than a few pictures, and I had to buy regular batteries which the camera just ate up quickly. Not good for mass picture taking. Oh well. Maybe someone will get us a new one for Christmas. Here's a photo of a coast guard ship from the ferry to Coronado.

A neat picture of a ship on the bay. Nice photo if I say so myself.

There's a thing called Urban Trees, where there are sculptures such as these along the road that borders the bay. This was an awesome one . . .

Cactus garden in Balboa park. There were some FUNKY cacti in this place. The views were fantastic . . .wanted to stay longer, but I didn't have much time to gallivant while on the tour.

Also in Balboa Park--there were lots of globes that were decorated with earth saving themes . . .I liked this one best. They lined on of the walkways, and also surrounded the fountain.

Balboa Park--beautiful and so not enough time to see everything . . .

This morning started with me accompanying my co-worker and her partner to the courthouse so they could be married. It was amazing to see them, and the other couples who had come to be joined in marriage. I am amazed to hear the commercials here in California that are in opposition of same sex marriage--some are down right mean. I also heard someone in Philly donated $900,000 to California to help the fight to ban same sex marriage. I know there are all sorts on many different sides of this issue, but I have to say, for a brief moment today I felt like there was hope that I, and others like me, could feel the experience the same things that other people get to experience.

Sigh . . .ok, I need to go to bed as my presentation is tomorrow at 8am. Wish me luck!

(ps--this is so not checked for grammar and spelling, so please forgive me. I am BEAT!)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

San Diego--Day 2 in pictures

OK, so these aren't in the order of my day, but I am tired and it will have to do. Here's a shot of some of the shops that I went to today. I skipped out early on a session and went to check it out. It looked like a little village of shops. This pictures doesn't do it justice, but it was cute. I got a gift for DP and a cute pirate shirt for Little Tyke.

This is a shot of only HALF of the HUGE convention center. My day started at 6:30 am for the social work business meeting. This was held in a hotel to the right of the center.

Near the Seaport Village where I went shopping-there was a park and you could see the boats going by and this was just a neat shot. A little fuzzy, but good. Great walking areas here--though the grass is funny. I haven't figured out why it is weird, but it is. Sort of like a mix between astroturf and real grass . . .is it a California thing?

What's this? I died and went to heaven . . .oh no. This is just the pool area at the hotel my stuff was in today. CAN YOU BELIEVE IT--look how freaking cool it was. It went most of the way around this restaurant on a hill. Very nice . . .

Another picture from the park I was walking in by the water.

The sight right outside of my hotel. Look at those trees. The grassy area must be an informal dog park area. Lots of dogs, and poop bag stations.

Tomorrow I am going to see my co-worker get married, then I will go to lunch, and then off for the trolley tour. I am excited. I had dinner with my boss, her daughter and friend, another nurse from Philly, and someone else I can't remember. We watched the Phillies game until it was rained out. Fun times. Then I headed to the rooftop pool and hot tub. Now, I am beat. Till tomorrow . . .

Sunday, October 26, 2008

San Diego--Day 1

My day started off really early this morning--I was at the airport by 6am. It was early and I didn't want to get coffee cause I wasn't sure if my butt would fit in the potty on the plane. (It fit fine, so next time I am getting the jumbo size!)

They told me to go to gate C25, which I dutifully did after getting a bagel sandwich that I would leisurely enjoy when I got to the gate with plenty of time to spare. Well, I get to said gate and the destination says Minneapolis . . .Uh, I am going to San Diego. She says they told me the wrong gate . . .really I needed to be at A23 (my SEAT number was C25?), which was seriously about 2 miles away. At this point I am hot because I had on long pants and long sleeve shirt and fleece. I start to strip, and high tail it to my gate. I stop to go to the bathroom, and realize I am sweating like a pig. Damn it.

I get to the gate and they are boarding. I open my sandwich to eat before I get on the plane, and realize the food is cold, AND they made it on a cheddar jalapeno bagel--which if you know me, you know I can't have spicy food. I eat the egg out of it, and the bottom of the bagel and trash the rest.

I get on the plane, all the way four rows from the back, and I get there and there is no more room in the overhead thing. Lady tells me to go toward the front. I turn around and there are a ton of people behind me. I can't move, no one will help. I stand there looking like I might cry. Finally the bag gets stowed 10 rows up, and I take my seat.

I am sitting next to two very interesting folks, and we end up chatting at the end. We watched Cinderella Man--which I wouldn't have normally chosen, but it was good. Indian man next to me is veterinarian headed to LaJolla for the USDA conference, and girl next to him is from Scranton and going to same conference as me. Just returned from two years in the peace corps. Good talk all around. We land and I get to cab very unceremoniously.

Get to hotel and I am not quite dried off from morning sweat, and now I have new sweat because it is 84 in SD today, and I am still in long sleeve pants and shirt. They don't have a room ready for me yet, cause it is only 11am here . . and I have been awake for hours, I am sweaty, and I need new clothes on. I take my stuff to the potty and put shorts and shirt on. I feel slightly better, but still wish I could change in room. They will call me when it is ready.

I go across street to convention center and the place is bigger than our airport I think. HUGE-there are like 12,000 people at this conference, and this is nothing compared to what it will look like tomorrow. I go to the opening session and they call to say room is ready. I go back, unpack, talk to DP--HI!!!, and then go back for new member session and check out co-workers poster presentation. The exhibit hall is HUGE and has a ton of stuff in it and I can't process that right now. Maybe tomorrow.

Somewhere along the way I go to a little cafe and have diner--by myself. A nice panini, salad, and diet soda. I haven't ever been to a real restaurant by myself, and I am working my way up to it. Even though I have some co-workers here, I don't know them all that well, and none have been overly excited about contacting me to hang out. I saw one and her partner while I was eating, and they stopped and chatted for a few minutes. They are getting married on Tuesday here in CA and they are excited. We are all supposed to go watch, but I don't know about how I feel about that--nor do I know how I would get there.

So much to take in. The trees I have never seen before, the beautiful area I am staying in, the people running around with fake blood on them for the Zombie Walk?? I want to get to the water some time, and there is a cute little shopping center near the bay which I may be able to take the little trolley to. The same little trolley does a little historic tour which I might try and catch at some point.

All of this after some sleep . . .it is after midnight in my head, and I need to sleep. Till tomorrow.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Hey good looking, what'cha got cooking?

Some folks have inquired about the recipes I have made, and so I thought I would post the recipes so far that we have made. All three have been great, and they all came from The book . . . . ???
Stay tuned . . .


DP says I can't post the recipes due to something like copyright infringement . . .so I don't know what to do. What's so bad about some jail time . . .can I post the recipes if I give them a pseudonym and not list the book . . .don't people share recipes all the time?

Addie's Corner-Episode 6

Well, looks like the little fellow is NOT going back to where he came from, and so I have had to learn to live with him. Seems I now have to share EVERYTHING with him--good thing I poop my brains out and need special food--since that means at least I don't have to share that with him. He is on my bed, in my kennel, with my people . . .what is up with that?

He sleeps funny, too. You see this picture--he is always upside down and spread eagle. Does he not have ANY modesty? This was a picture of him on the makeshift bed he made on the floor in the mom's room. Right after that the mom's thought he was really cute and said he could sleep on a big boy bed. Now I even have to share the end of the bed with him since he sleeps in the bedroom now. Oh well, since there's no heat on yet, he makes for some good warmth!

Sometimes when I need a break from the little whippersnapper, I go into the crate. I still seem to think I can fit in there-and even if I can't I will squeeze myself in there for some peace and quiet. Though sometimes my solitude is infiltrated . . .

However, at the end of the day, after all is said and done, and after he has stolen my people, eaten my sticks, played with my friends, laid on my bed, drank my water, played with my toys, jumped, humped, and thumped on me . . .

He ain't heavy . . .he's my brother and I love him very much.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Medical Update

Hey there folks. I am not sure if I talked at all about my headaches on this blog, but the last few months I have been getting these horrible headaches, and nothing has really touched it. It was getting to the point where sometimes I would wake up in the middle of the night with a splitting headache. One night I even cried and cried it hurt so much.

Well, it finally got to the point where I took myself to the doctor. She thought it might be a sinus infection gone wrong, and so she prescribed and antibiotic and muc*nex. Days later it wasn't better and I was sure I had a brain tumor. They told me to get and MRI and luck was on my side and I got in the same day to have the MRI. I guess when you say you need a brain MRI they feel it is important.

I went and actually had a headache during the test which I thought was a bonus. They did the test normal, and then shot me up with something to make my head glow. The test is done and they said they would call back in 24-48 hours. I get a call this morning and they tell me that my sinuses under my eyes, and somewhere else are completely blocked up, and one that is blocked up has fluid all stuck in it. No wonder I have headaches and am dizzy--especially when I lay down. During the worst headaches, the only thing that relieved them a tiny bit was sleeping sitting up. The doc told me to call the ENT right away and see if I could get an appointment.

Here's the kicker--I had surgery in 2003 for my sinuses--fixed a deviated septum and enlarged my sinuses which couldn't drain. Here's the other thing--you all know how much I despise George W--well, that sinus surgery was so awful I wouldn't even wish this on him. I had to wear a nose bra for days afterward since you can't blow your nose, and you have to have a dedicated DP who will stick q-tips up your nose to pull out goobers. And this was only having been together for a few months. So, nose bra, no blowing of my nose, and weekly trips to get vacuumed out.

Yes, you heard me right. Once a week for about a month I had to go get a long thing stuck up my nose and they vacuumed out my sinuses. It made me want to vomit every time, and I think once I passed out. I can't remember because that was so traumatic I have blocked it from my mind. Imagine you are vacuuming on the floor--you know the slurping noise it makes, and then something stops it up and the whirring stops--that's what it sounded like in my head and the stopping was only when it located a big goober that needed to be extracted from the deep depths of my head.

I can't tell you how much I am not looking forward to a second round of this. How do your sinuses even get blocked beyond repair?

I have to say, I am glad it wasn't a brain tumor, and glad that the pain wasn't all in my head--I mean it IS all in my head, but you know what I mean. The ENT was able to get me in the day after I get back from San Diego. What fun to look forward to.

I will keep you posted.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Grab a cup of something and settle in-

Hi. How are you all doing? I am ok. I went to the doctor today to see what is up with these crazy headaches I have been getting on on off for the last two months. Also some weird heart racing. No big deal. I get there and they take my BP and is it high--usually is at first. Doc comes in, talks to me for a bit, takes it again, and it is higher. She pokes around and thinks I have a sinus infection which may be causing the headaches. I have a long history of sinus issues and so this is not a far cry from what could be happening. She listed to the ticker and declares that fine as well. Obviously she is concerned about increased BP, so she prescribed antibiotics for the infection, and tells me to come back in three weeks and we will talk more about headaches if they are still there and check on BP. She also took blood--lots of blood. I am supposed to have my BP taken three times between now and the time I go back, and I am not sure how I am going to do that short of going to her office, which is a about 35 minutes away. I really like this doc and have stayed with her through various moves-much like the mechanic, I don't want to switch. I went to a cardiologist a year ago after my mom's open heart surgery to check on BP, but as soon as he took me off the birth control, it was better than normal. I am not on BC now, so I am unsure as to what could be causing this. I am sure worrying about what's causing it is causing it to go higher. Probably the brain tumor that is growing in my head as we speak and will soon burst out of my eyeballs.

Then this evening I talk to my brother. My brother who moved to TX over Easter and who I haven't seen since. Well, he is having a hard time. My SIL was diagnosed with bi-polar I guess like two years ago now, and it is not being managed very well. She had been hospitalized a few times, and then they decided together they would move to TX where she could take another lawyer job, make a shitload of money, and live the slower paced life. Well, needless to say the shit hath come very close to the fan, and my brother is stressed and has threatened to take Little Tyke away and leave. Which I am sure is not helping the situation, but he doesn't know what to do. I have told him what to do, of course, and he isn't listening and it is making me mad. He seems to think he can just reason with her and try and bully her into treatment, and I keep telling him it will not work. He asks me what to do, and I tell him to seek out a couples therapist that can help them determine together how to manage this. He has been supportive all along, but he is getting impatient. He revealed to me tonight that he has been seeing a therapist privately before they left for TX, though he paid in cash so as to not have anything on record in case he needed to deal with custody issues. Now that he is a stay at home daddy, he doesn't have the cash he had before to do this. She is seeing a psychiatrist once every three months--and they have her on so many meds that I can't imagine how they are monitoring it every three months. Her therapist has told her that she doesn't need to be going to therapy so much, and so she doesn't go. I think she is far from being able to manage this on her own.

My relationship with my brother has been so complicated. This man that I care about so deeply now is the same kid who did horrible things to me as a child, and who I nearly destroyed myself over. When I hear him talk, I hear how scared and vulnerable he is, and how he wants someone to help him make sense of things---it makes me sad (can I feel sad? can it be ok to feel sad for him, who did THAT?). Of course I want to be there for him, but I struggle as well with the feelings that come up. I hear him on the phone with Little Tyke, and he sounds like such a great father, and you can tell he is trying so hard. I want this to be easier for him, I want him to listen to me to get support for himself (why won't he listen--is this how it was when I didn't listen to people . . .). I want her to feel ok about herself. She is a brilliant, high powered lawyer who is freaking out right now and can't get out of bed because the TX bar application specifically asks if she has bi-polar disorder. She is worried that she will not be admitted to the bar and will lose her job over this. I can't blame her . . .I don't think that is even legal, but what do I know.

I know that is sucks to think of their relationship struggling so much. They have been together since high school, and he sacrificed a lot for her to put her through school. I hope they can find a way through this in a way that is honorable for all. I hope that Little Tyke is spared any harm from her inability to be near him and love him as he should be loved. I know they are all trying--it is hard to sit back and not have the words or the ability to help.

I will see them in about two weeks, and I am very excited. Little Tyke talked to me today on the phone about our plans to go trick or treating, and he instructed me on what I was to say when I got to the doors. He also told me about the dog that bit him in the face, and how he had to get stitches. He said is burned a little, but he was a big boy--all 4.75 years of him.

I miss them . . .I am sad for them.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Explanation needed . . .

Someone P L E A S E explain to me HOW on GOD'S green earth Sarah Palin is an expert on autism . . and how she knows so much about autism . . .Does he NOT know that the child that Sarah Palin has has DOWN SYNDROME????

OMgoodness . . . McCain just makes me angry on so many freaking levels . . .

Ok, I need to calm myself down before bed.

I did sign up to drive folks to the polls today. Goodness knows I need to do something . . .

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Seven things you might not know about me . . .

So Lynilu had tagged me on this last week sometime, and well, I am slow . . .but here goes . . .enjoy!

7 interesting things you might not know about me...

1.) I almost died when I was a baby. Had something wrong with my liver and they took most of it out when I was 5 weeks old I think.

2.) Because of said surgery, I had several blood transfusions and was tested for HIV for years after and I never knew why I had to be tested so much.
This was before they tested blood for HIV . . .

3.) I played the trumpet in high school and was in the marching band, jazz band, and concert band. I would occasionally be known to play a tuba or two as well.

4.) I sleep with a very large U shaped pillow in my bed to help me sleep due to my herniated disc problems . . .have such a hard time sleeping without it when I travel.

5.) I have journaled for years and years and have a ton of journals stored up, and when I was 19, a therapist I was seeing for therapy (who I ended up dating) encouraged me to "let them go". So now I don't have the journals from those early years, and I regret this often.

My parents had people round the clock in the hospital with me when I was born since I was in a very bad neighborhood and was the only white child in the nursery.

7.) I used to not shave my legs cause I thought I was making some kind of feminist statement . . .now I think that overly hairy legs is kinda icky. I have been harassing SOMEONE about this for weeks now to no avail . . .

8.) A bonus-->when I was heavily into drugs in high school, I ran a weed ring through the drive through window at the McDonald's I worked at--that is until I got caught and fired . . . but I made some killer money and also knew how to make a bowl using a courtesy cup, tin foil, and a straw! Who said I wasn't smart!

There you go. Hope it was entertaining!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Ridiculously Cute . . . .

I couldn't resist . . .I promise I will write soon. Lynilu has tagged me and I will get to that in the next few days . . .but in the meantime, check out these pictures. The one photo shows Riley with his new friend Bergey from puppy training class. We had a play date at our house on Sunday and it was fun!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

National Public Radio

We know and love it as NPR, and for years I thought it was only for old people who had nothing better to do with their time but sit around and listen to their radios at the kitchen table.

Boy was I wrong. I was turned onto NPR a while back when I saw a TV show talking about Wait Wait, Don't Tell Me. It is a weekly news quiz show that is funny enough to make me question if I have actually peed myself. I often wondered what people were listening to in their cars to make them laugh out loud, and I can safely say that this must be on the dial for some of them. I don't actually dial into NPR, though I do have it as a preset just to say I have it, but seems BBC news is always on when I tune in, so I listen to the podcasts.

I have also enjoyed Car Talk, where people call in and talk to these guys about car troubles--could be a woman who wants to know if it is ok to date a man who lives in a van, or suggestions on how you can butter up your mechanic--which you know I am all about!

Then there is Story Corp, not to be listened to en mass on the way to work, as you will find yourself crying, snotty nosed, and without tissues. Here they share interviews of people who have like 3 minutes in a booth to talk to or interview someone on something. Often times parents and kids talking about days gone by, or how old aunt sally met uncle homer in 1912 in the middle of a blizzard. You know, real tearjerker kind of things. Not all are that way, there are some funny ones like the woman whose mother bought her an inflatable bra in the 1920's and things went horribly wrong in the airplane and she was taken into custody after her boobs grew ever so large and then exploded--sounding like a gun. Again, too funny.

Who knew NPR could be so enlightening, fun, and laugh out loud hysterical! Take a listen and let me know what you think!! I am getting smarter by the week, and you can, too!!!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

What a crock!

DP and I decided this week that we should make something in the crock pot. So we got out our cookbook-entitled "Not your mothers slow cooker cook book". We perused some good ones, and settled on some meatloaf and potato thing. Seemed easy enough and thus we have dinner cooking as we speak.

Thing is, it is weird, as a person who sorta has some OCD issues, to leave a heated thing on cooking in the house all day long. Something seems very wrong with that.

Secondly, I have been home for a few hours now smelling this yummy yummy dinner, and all I can think about is food . . .I want to eat NOW!! We have another 2 hours for crying out loud. I will never make it-or I will simply eat so much other stuff that I won't be hungry for yummy dinner. I am also seriously procrastinating on finishing my paper which is due tomorrow, people. GRRRRRR

I also can never resist the urge to go open the top and look in. I know this lets out a ton of steam that has been building for hours, but I need to interact with it somehow--I can't believe it doesn't need me . . . to do ANYTHING.

That's just a crock if you ask me!

Monday, October 06, 2008

Can't help myself

Look what I found on my desk this morning when I got to work--HOW FUNNY!!!