Saturday, May 31, 2008

Much needed sleep

I had the most wonderful, much needed sleep last night. I napped from 630p-9pm then slept from 1030p til 1020am. It was wonderful. My bedroom is wonderful. The room darkening shades and drapes are wonderful. The only not so wonderful thing is that its raining out. :( I was hoping to go for a walk or something but I'm not doing it in the rain. I'm thinking about doing one of my WATP DVDs before I get ready for work.

I also broke my cell last night. I dropped it on the kitchen floor and it broke in half. So now I have to trek out to a Verizon store for a new one. Of course doing that on a Saturday should be a breeze. Ha, yeah right. I might just wait til tomorrow. I think I may end up leaving for work a little earlier than normal being that its thundering and raining out now. I don't want to end up late for work because I get stuck behind people that can't drive in the rain.

I'm thinking about taking some group classes at the gym. I'm really intimidated by that though. There is a step class and a "body pump" class that I'm thinking about but I am honestly scared to go. No idea why, just scared.

Ok, I better get moving...its already noon and I want to leave by 115. Ugh, wish I didn't have to work today!! Hopefully it will be a quiet shift. I've got some reading to do.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Tried something new

We tried a new recipe today. Its wasn't half bad. I'm not going to say it was on my top 10 by any means, but it was pretty good. It could definitely curb any Chinese food craving without a problem and for much less points than eating out or ordering in. Its from the Weight Watchers Spring 2008 five ingredient 15 minute cookbook which I found at Walmart.

Mongolian Beef
5 points, 4 svgs (1 cup svg)
prep: 7 min
cook: 8 min

1 Tbsp dark sesame oil
2 tea minced garlic
4 green onions, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 (1lb) flank steak, trimmed and cut crosswise into thin strips
1/4 c water
2 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
4 tea cornstarch
2 tea crushed red pepper flakes
2 tea brown sugar
toasted sesame seeds (optional)

Heat oil in large non-stick skillet over med-hi heat
Add garlic & green onions and cook, stirring frequently, 1 minute
Add beef and cook 5 minutes or til beef is browned, stirring frequently
While beef cooks combine water and next 4 ingredients in small bowl
Pour mixture over beef
Cook 1-2 minutes or til sauce is thickened and beef is cooked through
Garnish with sesame seeds

We needed to add a little soy sauce but it was pretty good. We had it with Thai rice noodles, which I had for the first time tonight. They were pretty good. That made everything take a little bit longer because you have to soak them for 35 minutes before adding to the recipe, but it was worth it. I'm starting to be quite the little rice eater which is VERY new for me. So, total, our supper was 9 points. Fruit and Cool Whip for dessert later and maybe a chocolate chip cookie...the new WW ones aren't too bad.

How is that comfortable?

We had a nice night yesterday. Tim and Aimee came, we BBQ'd which was delicious and then we went to a bar to people watch. And there were plenty of people to watch. Holy hell, who dresses some of these girls? Crazy. I'd put some pictures up but this is a family like blog and I think the pictures would be offensive. The shorts were shorter than short and the skirts, well I think they don't even qualify as skirts. I don't see how its even comfortable. But, it gave the four of us something to talk about for a few hours.

WW friendly? Not so much. Well today it is, I'm journaling everything. But going to the bar killed me. Not that I drank too much but I had enough that at 2am I was ready to start "late night eating." Nothing I can do about it now. I'm just moving on and journaling away today. Maybe before Brian leaves for OT tonight I'll make something from my new cookbook. I'll let you know if its anything worth trying. We're watching Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations and he's in Sicily. Now I want to go to Little Italy tonight. Not so WW friendly but very yummy.

As for right now, its time for a nap. Brian's working OT tonight and 24 hours tomorrow so he'll be napping for a bit this afternoon. I don't work til 3pm tomorrow but I'll take advantage of a cuddly nap with a nice breeze from outside snuggled up with my boy. Maybe I'll be well rested for a trip to the gym later.

I started this post with a purpose but I've become distracted and I can't remember what it was supposed to be about. Sometimes I wonder how my mind can wander so much.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

help w/ points value

I need some help finding a points value. I've been awake for like a million hours and was craving a tuna sub from Subway. Being that on top of being awake for a million hours, I fasted because I needed to have bloodwork drawn. So, I felt that I was entitled to have a high points tuna sub. But, I did try to be good. I didn't get any chips or anything and I had them put the normal amount of tuna on just 3" of bun. Its not a lot of "saving" of calories/points, but I figure its better than eating all the bun. Anyway, I'm trying to figure out how many points the tuna is worth. I went to WW.com and Subway.com but its hard to find actual nutritional info for just the tuna. I tried to subtract the NI for the bun, but if you read the "components" of a tuna sub it has cheese included which I didn't have. Ugh, all this rambling. Sorry, I'm very tired. So, anyway, if anyone knows how much or an estimate of points for Subway tuna I'd greatly appreciate knowing it.

Last night confirmed that I don't like working at Medic 25. I love Kerper but not that unit. And the guy I worked for should owe me another day of work just on principle. He got to work a nice easy shift at a slow unit where he slept through the night while I got to run 21 calls, all no where near our firehouse, and eight of those being after midnight. I needed to nap just to drive home. Haven't had one of those nights in a while. And hope I won't again for a while. It was fun working with Kerper though. I miss him as a partner. Downfall...we eat very well together. I did NOT have a good WW day. Part of that was because we attempted to get supper around 6pm. We ended up eating around 11pm and even then, we still needed 4 tries to actually complete our food. I have a hard time with work and eating. I'm okay if I can get my 3 meals in...I don't have to snack which means more points can go towards meals. That being the case I don't usually carry snacks around anymore. But, then we get nights like last night where there was a 5 hour gap in the supper time and well, we found ourselves eating Gen Tso chicken. I got steamed rice instead of fried. And I didn't eat all of the meal. I'm doing better with decisions, I guess. They aren't totally on plan, but they are better than I would do if I didn't think at all.

And with that, I'm off to la-la land for a few hours. Tim and Aimee should be here around 6pm. I hope I'm awake enough. :)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

New snack

I was in Super Wal-Mart this weekend and found my new favorite snack. They are Uncle Wally's Smart Portion muffins. I bought the blueberry and they are wonderful. And, better yet, they are only 1 point a piece. They taste very non-diety and compliment a bowl of cereal very well in the am if you are used to having something sweet or bakery like. I think they are ten times better than Weight Watchers muffins. The website has listed where you can buy them. The only stores I recognize are Weis and Super Wal-Mart. Anyone else try any other flavors?

I'm going to be busy at 1230 on Tuesday's

I'm down 1.2 lbs since last week! I guess a little hard work pays off. I'm not going to lie and say I was on plan like I should be but it shows that I was better than I have been recently. This is just what I needed to stay motivated. On top of that, I found a new meeting. It is farther away than my current one but I feel it may be worth the drive. First off, they only meet once a week, so if I miss it I can't go there til the following Tuesday. Secondly, the members are awesome. The crowd is a little older than me, but not as old as some that I've been with lately. Sorry. Hanging out with a bunch of 80 year old women just wasn't working. This ladies now are probably late 30s to 60ish. I can do that. And funny....alot of them come as "pairs" so they are already chit chatty with each other. Today some lady was talking about how excited she was that she finally fit in a pair of capris that she hasn't been able to get in, only to fall down a hill and bust her butt. She hurt herself but she was more upset that she tore her pants and now she won't be able to wear them. All that weight loss work to not be able to wear them. Other meetings I've been at no one would tell a story---everyone seemed in a rush to get out of there. So, needless to say, I'm pretty happy. Oh, and the meetings are at 1230 on Tuesday. Its late enough that I can't sleep through it and early enough that I can attach some errands to it.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Honey, I'm home!!

Finally. It felt like it was never going to get here. I was never so happy to see Bastard Cat in all my life. The ride back sucked but I think that was because I was anxious to finally get here.

So, tomorrow's the big weigh in. One part of me is anxious and the other is worried. I'm hoping I did well but seriously, I'm not so sure I did. I started the week off well, but with my limited meal choices it was hard to be good. I made the best choice out of the food I was offered and I ate so much less than I normally would, but I'm not sure it was good enough for a change in the scale. I guess we'll see tomorrow.

I bought a new cookbook at Walmart over the weekend and I can't wait to use it. Its in the magazine section---I can't remember the name but its something like "5 ingredients" or something.

I'm so looking forward to this week. Brian's working tomorrow but I'm not. That means a day of winding down for me. Wednesday I get to work with Kerper (Yeah!) at Medic 25 (boo!). I'm looking forward to that. He's my old partner and we have a blast together. I haven' t worked a full shift with him since last July. Thursday, my best friend from college, Tim, and his wife, Aimee, are coming to stay the night. Then except for Saturday's shift at work, the week is free. Hopefully we'll get started on the bedroom floors here eventually.

I'm a hottie tottie.

Yep, that's me. I mean who wouldn't be stalking me? A farmers tan and a swollen eye is a rare catch these days.

I woke up with a swollen left eye. I think its a bugbite in that little, little, piece of skin between the corner of the eye and the bridge of the nose. It sucks. I hope if it is a bugbite it doesn't go through my normal bugbite phases which include turning purple almost like a hicky. That would be a tough one to explain.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

The party is over.

It went well, I think. Everyone seemed to have a good time, especially the kids. Well, lets start at the beginning.

Yesterday, I met Brian and the kids, and my sister and Jimi at the Coal Mine Tour in Scranton. The kids seemed to really like it. Then later that night we went to dinner with my parents and Jimi's dad and one of Jimi's friends that accidently showed up a day early. Hopefully I'll have some pictures to post later this week.

Today, we got the kids ready early and then took them to the playground for a while before the party. The party went well, like I said. The kids had a blast. Last summer my parents got rid of their above ground pool so there ended up being a huge mud circle where it once lived. I think every "digger dozer" toy in the neighborhood ended up in the mud. They built a "street" to the neighbors yard. The kids looked like mud people. Ugh, it was a mess, but they had fun. I'll have pics of that too.

Oh, then there was my tan/burn. I swear I was outside for like 2 hours and then I ended up with a serious case of farmers tan. I was so embarrassed. Everyone was making fun of me. Guess there will be no tank tops for me for a while.

I didn't do well with points. I ate less than I normally would, so I'm okay with that, but as far as where I will be on the scale, its hard to tell. Plus, by the end of the night, I had a few drinks, so that didn't help. Oh well. Its okay. It was a special event and I was good a lot of other days this week. Tomorrow I can get back to normal. I will be home and things will be normal. There will be no people tempting me with donuts and pizza. The immediate stress around here will be gone. Ok, so tomorrow is back to normal and I can't wait. More than anything, I'm glad I don't have to share a bedroom with two kids. Found out the hard way Bella talks (yells) in her sleep.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

I can't wait for them to get here.

I can't wait til Brian and the kids get here. I can't wait. I can't wait. I can't wait. I already ate breakfast (got up early to make sure I don't give in to a bad breakfast) and I'm getting ready to run some errands before we meet them. We are going on the coal mine tour and then later tonight we may take the kids to the drive-in movie. Its just something that we don't think the kids would ever do. Plus its Indiana Jones which I don't really like, but they'll love.

So, as for the drama on the home front, it continues. I talked to Holly today and we've narrowed it down that it feels like when you are trying to make friends with the "mean girls." The ones that talk to you when there's no one else around, but the rest of the time they stare straight ahead and don't even acknowledge your talking. The conversation ends as soon as you are done talking. Its pretty one sided, like talking to yourself, although that wasn't the intention. I'm at the point where I'm done trying. That's pretty consistent....2 days in to the visit. For Christmas we stayed at a hotel to avoid all of that. Now, I'm wishing I did the same this visit as well. But, if we stayed someplace else the kids wouldn't get to use our old sleeping bags from when we used to stay at Nana & Pop's...Smurfs and My Little Pony.

Grampy's about the same, maybe a little better. They are waiting for a bed so they can transfer him out of ICU. I didn't go to the hospital yesterday but they say he was cranky yesterday. At least he was with it enough to get cranky.

OK, so I'm excited they are coming, frustrated and upset about all the other stuff and I vow to make today a good day. Yesterday was a little bit not good points wise. I'm not going to lie, I didn't count them, but today I am. I'm going to have a good day. That's that.

I'd like to formally congratulate Christy on pooping yesterday. Ha :) Poor girl.

Friday, May 23, 2008

I wish it was a relaxing trip.

So, I'm thinking that someone I defended in an argument recently may have knowingly lied to me before I took their back. Really, I'm not losing sleep over it because at this point I could care less, but its the principle behind it. I think by now we've all learned my views on lying, or stretching the truth, or trying to protect others or whatever you want to call it. The lesson for today: just don't lie and life will be much easier. The truth comes out anyway. That's how we find out its a lie.

Being home is kind of stressful. I don't think it should be, but it is. My family and I have some serious communication problems. Things are always taken out of context, stories twisted til they don't really resemble the original conversation, or it seems that things turn into a competition even if its not intended that way. I feel very out of place here most of the time. I don't have a whole lot to my life except work, Brian and his kids. I have a cat who doesn't say much. I don't have too many interesting hobbies. I'm not enthralled in living in Baltimore so I don't have interesting stories as to what I did last weekend. Last year we ended up having a heated argument amongst the family about me vs. them and how I come off as being "better" than them or too good and disrespectful. I, of course, disagree with all of it. I have a strong, sarcastic personality, I will give them that. But, I never feel that I'm too good to be visiting. Its been said I'm now a "city" girl. I live where I live because my dad made me go to school there. I didn't even want to go to University of Maryland, I wanted to go to Wilkes University to play basketball. I finally got up enough guts to tell him where I wanted to go and he wouldn't talk to me for days. After a while, I lied and told him I was okay with UMD because it was just easier for me. I stayed down there after meeting Marshall and by the time we divorced I already had my job so I wasn't about to up and leave that. I don't have a lot to offer to their conversations because I'm not into Harley's. Not because I'm too good for them. I'm just scared of them because I've seen plenty of people who have wrecked their bikes. I think they're interesting, but they are just not for me. Apparently, at that time, I caused anxiety to my entire family. I'm still not exactly sure how but I do. Its been almost year since that argument and I'm still not over it. I saw first hand how conversations I've had and relationships that I thought improved were not as I thought they really went/were.
Its very upsetting to me. I walk on eggshells now trying to make sure I don't say the wrong thing. I wonder if as soon as I walk away they start talking about me like they do other family members or as I've found out they've done in the past. I'm very accepting of my family and honestly supportive of their decisions no matter if I agree with them or not. I try to look at things from various perspectives and understand where they are coming from. I just don't feel its mutual. And the worst is that "feeling" doesn't make our "normal" problems any better. It just makes the tension worse. Anyone who knows me for any real length of time knows how much it upsets me. No matter how much I try to play off it doesn't matter, I know I'm really lying to myself. This is something that's coming up in my counseling. As my new counselor put it, I'm ready to deal and move on with my past. As for the here and now, I really can't wait for Brian and the kids to get here tomorrow. I really do miss them.
The good side of it is with all of this I'm not using food as a comfort. Today wasn't my greatest day but it wasn't my worst by any means. I'm really quite impressed at how well I've done so far. I even went out to supper tonight with my dad, sister and her fiance. And I didn't order pizza!

I was half good...

and half bad. But I'm being better than I usually am on a trip to PA. After all the talk about how I wasn't doing breakfast with everyone in the morning and only eating Cheerios, my mom came in this morning to wake me up to eat. I don't think in 27 years she's ever done that. But Jimi made breakfast so I think that may have had something to do with it. I fought with myself a little about what I was going to eat. I told them I wasn't being rude but I couldn't eat all that they had to offer. I got myself a bowl of Cheerios with milk and a banana. I traded in the big dinner plate for a salad plate and took maybe only 1/4 cup of scrambled eggs (which were delicious---cheese in them) and a half a biscuit with maybe two tablespoons of sausage gravy (homemade, also super delicious). I didn't eat all of the cereal, but I did eat all the banana so I got some fruit in today. I so wanted more, but instead of sitting around the table I got up and started washing dishes. I nibbled on a tiny piece of a donut and then at lunch I had 1/2 piece of pizza and a 1/4-1/2 serving of the supper leftovers. I know if I add up my points I'm probably a little bit up there, but its hard to say. I find it so hard to estimate sometimes.

Now I'm in a sticky situation because my dad wants us to go to a local restaurant for supper. Its so freakin' good. I don't think there's a single healthy thing in the place. OK, maybe there is but that defeats going there. I just found myself telling my mom to eat without me because I might be busy, but I don't think that is true. I am afraid to go there and ruin a few days of good work. I know whats on the menu for the party on Sunday and I think I may have to skip breakfast and lunch and still maybe go buy some of my own hot dogs or something so I can eat within reason and know the points value. This is about the time I start to have a "this is too hard" breakdown and I go back to my old ways. But I really don't want to do that. And my "stay in the weight range for work" motivation really is working. I'm impressed.

I am waiting to hear back if Laura wants to go out for the afternoon but I don't think that's going to work out. So, I think I'm going to nap because I'm lazy and then head out shopping for a bit. I have nothing to shop for but it will get me walking. I'd go for a walk outside but its way too windy. There are just some weather conditions I refuse to go out in unless I'm getting paid to (honestly) and that includes wind, rain, and ice. Unfortunately I don't think anyone is paying me to walk in the wind today. Good day for the windmills though. We have a windmill farm up here that has 47, 300 foot windmills that produce energy for 19,000 homes. Kinda neat, especially when you see them all lined up on the horizon.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Temptation

Ok, so it started with the plan for breakfast tomorrow. I walked away from a dozen of delicious looking Dunkin' Donuts. And now my dad ordered pizza even when I told him I'm trying to be good. On top of that I just had a converstation with my sister that makes me now really want to eat something. Convenient, pizza is on the way. Ugh, I don't like this.

I made it.

I'm here. On the way I stopped and visited with Grampy. He's doing well. I should say better. He's lucid and talking. He's on dopamine which is helping to keep his pressure up and off the pacer. His heart rate is still kinda low but he's compensating well. As long as he stays alert and has a blood pressure, then they are going to keep the pacer off. His EKG is a little crazy to look at but like I said, really it doesn't matter as long as his body is handling it well. Actually I'm kinda impressed the doctors are treating the patient and not the monitor as we were taught in medic school. He seemed pretty happy to see us (I went with Mom).


WW today: I had Cheerios before leaving and stopped at Subway for a sub and some soup. Mom offered to make supper or take us out so I decided to just make it for her. I figured she could use a break plus that ensured I ate something within a fairly low points range. I made gnocchi with sausage and spinach. I am pretty sure I'm a little over today so I'm trying hard to not add anything else to my menu. Leigh's fiancee is on his way here. I'm worried about that. Not that I'm afraid of him but I'm afraid of him in the morning. He apparently is all about breakfast. He makes a big southern breakfast. I like big breakfasts. Yummy big delicious breakfasts. High high point breakfasts. So we'll see how tomorrow goes. I bought Cheerios and hopefully it will be a successful day. Probably not but you never know.

As for now, its time for the season finale of Grey's. My other mild addiction.

Missed my ride.

I missed the 5am ride outta here. Actually I slept through it. Woke up around 730 to realize I still had to pack. I spent so much time ironing and getting other stuff done last night I didn't feel like packing. I guess its alright. I'm packing through rush hour. Hopefully by the time I get on the Beltway it won't be too bad.

The problem with packing is I need to do it for temperatures from 35-80 degrees. Tonight its supposed to be in the 30s, high of 50, but Monday its supposed to be 77-80. I have no idea what I put in my bag.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Finally, some better news.

Oh, post #50 for the day....or at least it feels that way. Well, at least its good news. My uncle called this afternoon saying he and my mom went to the hospital to see Grampy and he was up waving them in the room. That's a big change from yesterday when he couldn't stay awake and when he was up he couldn't talk. His mental status is much improved and all he wanted to do is watch the Yankees. He produced urine finally. 600 cc's so thats pretty significant since they put 800 in. He's off the pacer for now. His rate is still on the low side, but at least he's doing things on his own. The doctor said his cardiac enzymes came back and it ended up that he had a mild heart attack. Everything goes back to his heart. They initially thought maybe he got sick, then dehydrated and then his heart went, but it looks like its the other way around. I kinda suspected that was the case with an infection on top. They seem to have narrowed the infection down to his urine. Although he's doing better, the doctors warned my mom and uncle that his heart is now back to the same old 89 year old heart that caused all this in the first place. Grampy is either on the mend or he's back to three days ago where he was Mr. Perky Talkative and the next day he was unresponsive with a rate of 20. The intensivist wanted to move him to a regular telemetry floor but his PCP vetoed that, which I'm happy about. Doctors are always so quick to downgrade people. He's spending at least one more night in the ICU then maybe tomorrow he'll get moved. Its still very much a wait and see prognosis. But, obviously, we're all very excited to hear that he's doing better this evening.

I went to the crotch doctor today (as my mom called it--OB/GYN to everyone else). She had a bunch of nothing to say. She's sending me for my lab work to figure out why I don't get periods. She thought about putting me back on the pill but I had such problems with it I don't feel its worth it. The doctor kinda makes it seem that since I'm not trying to get preggo its not a big deal. I'm sure its not to her but for the last 10 years of my life have been a bit crazy with hormones and bleeding and such yuck. Since finding out my ex-husband is having a baby in a few months, my doctor told me the reason we didn't get pregnant when we were trying was because of me. What a downer, even though I pretty much already knew it. Sucks when nature doesn't work. So she said if Brian and I ever planned on kids she said I'd automatically have to go to a fertility clinic and Brian would need some work done being that he's "fixed". Granted, this all is wayyyyy down the road if it ever happens, but I told the doctor I'd be scared to end up with a bunch of babies. And on top of that, its expensive if insurance doesn't cover it. I told her I can't handle more than twins and I'd be afraid to end up like Kate from Jon and Kate + 8. She started laughing. I thought it was because I told her my fear. She told me no, she thinks I look like Kate. She suggested adoption which we've talked about as well. No matter how much I'd like to know what a "little Sarah" (boy version of course) looks like, if I'm going to invest that much money into it and guarantee I only get one kid we'd have to look into adopting. Plus there's a million kids out there that deserve good homes. Like I said, its a long ways off if it ever even happens. As for now I still have screwed up ovaries and hormones and we may never know why.

BTW, WW sucks. Yes, I stayed on plan today but dammit! I want some Chinese food. My 3 point egg roll just isn't cutting it. I want grease and syrupy General Tso sauce and fried pieces of some sort of animal I'm sure isn't chicken, and maybe a doughy dumpling, too. I have 2 points left for the day and I'm trying very hard to figure out what to do with them. I'm pretty sure House of China can only offer me a fortune cookie for that much, and that will probably push me over anyway.

When it rains it pours.

I was talking to my friend Karen about my grandfather and she asked if I heard about Kim. Kim? Nope, should I have? Kim's a girl we went to elementary and high school with. We weren't close by any means but being that our graduating class was only something like 65 kids, well, by shear numbers you knew everyone. Well, anyway, I caught up with this girl, Kim, on myspace a few months back. We exchanged a few messages and got all caught up on what we've been doing for the past 10 years. She has I think three kids now, one of which being a baby only a few months old. A few weeks back, I read on her page she was really sick. I got a message from her saying she has asthma really bad and her roommate came home to find her not breathing and well, dead. The medics revived her and she ended up intubated at the hospital for two weeks or something. I talked to her about how significant that was and how just the simple fact that she needed to be intubated increases her chances of it happening again. She said she didn't realize that and she wished they could get her asthma under control. I told her about finding a pulmonary doc and some medicines I knew that I know have helped others quit smoking. A smoking asthmatic isn't a good mix. She seemed genuinely grateful and I was actually impressed how two people who really weren't friends in high school were looking out for each other. I think I even mentioned her "case" to an asthmatic I treated at work the other day and how important it was to keep up with breathing treatments, etc.

Then there's the conversation with Karen. So, what I didn't hear about Kim before talking to Karen was that she died a few days ago. Totally blindsided me. Now, like Brian told me, for all we know she got hit by a car, but then I found out today they think it was her asthma or at least something medical. For some reason I took it personally. Not personally like I could have done something to save her because I know thats unrealistic, but its just so ironic that just a week ago she was telling me she got more info out of me than her doc about how serious her condition has become. Part of me finds that hard to believe but then again, I've met quite a few docs that I know only passed with a C or D and they got the same "Dr." before their last name on the white coat. I really deep down hope it wasn't her asthma that killed her. Unless she was blowing smoke up my ass she seemed like she "grew up" and was ready to take control of her condition. She's 28 and leaves behind I think its three kids. Sad.

As for everything going on my end....my trip north has been postponed til early tomorrow am. I talked with my mom and since I don't know when my doc appt will be over, its a lot less stressful for to get everything together tonight and leave early tomorrow am before rush hour. Like she and my sister said, by the time I get to their house tonight, there's not going to be anything to do except go to bed. I'm going to take their advice, run all my errands today, get a good night sleep with Bastard Cat and head out early in the AM.

Surprisingly, with everything going on around here I am NOT stress eating. I got the new 3 month journal from my WW meeting yesterday and I love it. Its really just a different shape but God, it makes all the difference to me. I also bought the point calculator. Love it! Does the same thing as the points slider but its cooler. Actually it stores your points for the day so it does keep me on track when I conveniently (accidentally on purpose) forget how many points I have left for the day. Like Brian said, all I need is one good week to get me right back on track. Once I see that good loss after honestly hard work it will keep me going. I'm not even nervous about going to PA where I normally over eat deliciousness. I think I'll stop at the store on the way up and find some snacks/meals I know I can stick to. And maybe I'll have some say in the menu for Sunday's party and I can make some stuff that's good for me.

Thanks for sticking with the blog and reading all the other stuff that's been going on. I know most of its not WW based, but it really is a stress buster. Instead of eating, I'm typing these days and actually projecting my emotions elsewhere. Its really become a useful tool. And to be honest, I don't care if anyone reads it...its more for me. But its nice to know I've got some nice "stalkers" out there that every once in a while throw their two cents in. :)

I'm packing my bags

I'm headed up north. Grampy's doing a little better, I guess. His vitals are up. Its still very much a waiting game. I found someone to work for me Friday so I'm going to head up today and stay til Monday or Tuesday. The family decided not to cancel Leigh's engagement party, so I'm going more to help out with getting that all ready so my mom can spend time with her dad. My uncle got Grampy's DNR in order so if/when Grampy's heart stops we don't have to worry about them reviving him and us then have to decide when its time to take him off life support. I talked to mom and dad today and everyone seems to be doing pretty well.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Update.

I talked to my sister and my uncle. Grampy has stayed the same. I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad. Both are telling me to stay in Maryland. I have mixed feelings about that but I'm staying put for now. At this point, my uncle feels Grampy will either die in an hour or respond to the fluids and antibiotics and pull through and end up living in an nursing home. Either way, both are undesireable. Like I said in my previous post, I want him to live because no one wants to see a family member die, but at the same time, Grampy won't do well living in a nursing home. The family agrees.

So, this afternoon I talked to my sister. First off, I have to say it was probably one of the longest and most sincere conversations I've ever had with her. We don't really get along and its not because I don't want to. Our relationship is just hard and I don't know why. Anyway, it was nice talking to her. I found out she feels the same way I do about the whole situation and seems to be on the same page about understanding just how sick Grampy is. We don't think my mom "gets" how sick he is. Or, maybe she doesn't want to, which is understandable. I remember hearing a story about when she found out I was in my accident and at the time in grave condition. She just sat on the bed and rocked back and forth saying "this is a bad dream and I'm going to wake up." I've never been in a situation before, I guess, where someone in my immediate family was about to die. Or, maybe I respond differently. I guess thats it. I watched my dad fall through 2 1/2 floors of a house to the basement during a house fire and I was cool as could be. Actually, probably the second thing I told someone (after, "someone help him") was "my Mom is going to kill us." And, I remember my sister being sick in college and me wanting to help her but didn't know how.

Whatever the case, I think my mom is in denial. She has taken care of my Grampy for a long time. At the age of 16, she watched her mom battle and ultimately die of cancer. Grampy didn't need taking care of like bathing and feeding but she checked on him everyday. And he returned the favor....we lived with him for a year or so while my parents house was being built. They obviously have a very close bond. My sister, uncle, and I see just how sick Grampy is and are prepared for the phonecall. I'm not sure if my mom is there yet.

That leads me to a question or a rant or something. Everyone responds differently to stress. Some get hyper, some shut down, some run away....while my mom feels she needs to be there all the time with my grandfather, my uncle says he can't. I see both sides of the fence. Like I said I talked to my uncle on the phone today. I haven't talked to him on the phone, well, maybe ever. I could hear the concern in his voice. I heard him upset. I heard him talk in circles. He's not a compassionate guy. He's actually very stubborn, like myself. I get the feeling that although he "knows" his dad is going to die, he doesn't know how to accept it. He said he went to the hospital this afternoon and then told me he was going golfing tonight. I already heard this story from my sister and how upset the family is because he's "self-centered." Before talking to him, I could see where my family was coming from. That was til I heard his side. He said, "Sarah, I'm going golfing because I don't know what else to do. I need some sort of release from all this," and he was sincere. After getting off the phone I told Brian it was probably good he was going golfing. My uncle stepped up recently and took care of my Grampy more than he has in years. And now he's second guessing decisions. I think he deserves a break. So does my mom, dad, aunt and sister. It looks like shit that he's golfing while he's dad is in ICU, but at the same time, no one would question if my mom went home and crocheted til her fingers fell off or if someone else ends up at a bar shit-faced tonight. Everyone's got their way of dealing with stress. Hell, you'd probably find me sitting with a beer, a shot and a pizza. I don't know if there's a "right" way to deal with everything. Or, maybe an overall acceptable way.

I guess my point is its very typical for my family to jump to conclusions. Maybe its easy for me to see the other side of things because I haven't taken care of my grandfather and I live hours away. But at this point, I'm really scared for my mom or dad to call and start bitching about my uncle. One part of me wants to defend him and the other wants to bite their tongue. It seems in my family at times, its hard to defend yourself or others when other family members already have very strong feelings in their head. I know I've been through that a time or two over the past few years. I know when I was "my uncle" and was getting talked about for decisions I made all I wanted was someone to defend me. Now, at this point, I want to defend him, but I don't know if its a fight worth fighting.

Grampy

While at WI this morning (up .8 lbs, BTW) my mom left me a voicemail saying my grandfather is in ICU. A few months ago, my uncle walked in on my grandfather in his shorts and saw that he had some serious swelling going on. Apparently, my grandfather was like that for weeks and felt it was okay not to tell anyone. My uncle (who is also a medic) took him to the doctor, who in return, admitted him to the local hospital with right sided heart failure. They got some of the fluid off him and he was like a new man. Since then, my mom said he started losing some weight, but was doing better. At least he was "trying" to live. Before the heart failure diagnosis he refused to eat and overall had failure to thrive. (Sidenote, he's 89, still lives by himself, walks everywhere, good overall health except for Type II Diabetes.) Between my parents and sister and my uncle and his family, Grampy was getting checked on every day. I guess yesterday my mom went to drop off supper for him and saw that he was throwing up and had diarrhea. Mom cleaned everything and then offered to take Grampy to the hospital, which he refused. He told her he just didn't feel right. This is when it sucks to have some medical knowledge. I worst case scenario stuff, so where everyone else is thinking a stomach flu, I'm thinking something cardiac. (Everyone reading this, if you start puking it does not mean you have heart issues!!) I guess he made himself comfy and a few hours later they tried rousing him for a drink. He was unresponsive so they called 911. Apparently his heart rate was 20 so they started pacing him in his apartment. From the little bit of the story I got from my mom, it sounds like it worked, which is good. He got an indwelling pacer inserted in the ER and then spent the night in the ICU. The doctor says he feels its a combination of cardiac stuff and some underlying infection because his WBC is 23000. Today he's in kidney failure--he hasn't produced any urine. I guess he's more alert...a little more talkative, but they don't still don't know his underlying issue.

My mom told me to stay in MD (they're all in NE PA) until they hear otherwise but I have a feeling we may go up on our own anyway. I tried to get in touch with my uncle to find out more medical information. I hate that part of things....I'm trying to find some medical information out to know how well he really is doing and I'm afraid it comes off as I don't care, which obviously isn't the case.

I, of course, pray that my Grampy comes out of this with flying colors. At the same time, I know if he does, he's no longer going to be living on his own like he has for the past 34 years. Some people, like Brian's grandmother after her stroke, used that as a motivation to get better. I pray that if he ends up in a nursing home setting he thinks the same way.

Please keep him in your thoughts.

Monday, May 19, 2008

And another....

Must be the week for starting blogs. Laura's got one now too. She and her husband are flipping a house, so she's blogging their progress. Hopefully she's better at posting pics than I am about our house projects.

First off, work rocks today! I actually enjoy being here. The call volume has significantly decreased which I needed. And it must be working because we had a critical patient which things weren't going exactly smooth...and I kept my cool. I didn't want to smother anyone. Although I did want to take the combo pads off the patient and stick them to the sides of the providers face. (Maybe Holly & Christy will be the only ones that understand that.)

I packed my food for the day. I ate my lunch and as usual, opted out of the supper part of it. I'm just not that into pork chops to re-eat them. Today is pizza Monday and I had will power!! Yes, I still got pizza, but while my partner ordered Ledo's pizza w/ bacon and cheesecake, I had him drop me off at Food Lion. I got a box of Melba Snacks for a snack (1 point for a pretty good crunch), a Lean Cuisine pizza (which I'm finding out is really quite good if you don't overcook them) and a WW ice cream cup for dessert. I had a few too many points for breakfast today. My breakfast accidently came with potato rounds and I didn't have enough will power to throw them out. :( But still I'm only 4 points over for the day. I'm very happy about that. Ledo's would have definitely been a bad decision for me. Tomorrow's my weigh in (at some point) so we'll see how it goes. I'm lacking in the water intack department today but I'm hoping I can increase it a little before the nights over. I just hate having to pee on the way to a call.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

And then the next day sucked.

Just talkin' about the weather. Ugh, today's weather sucked. I know why it acted like it did outside today. Because we were going to take Taylor to the Air Show at Andrews Air Force Base. I wanted to go so bad. Every year I want to go but, I'm either working or its raining. Some year, I may actually take up the offer to work the OT for the event. Not a bad gig to get paid to work an event you'd pay to get into.

So, today was a good lazy day. Maybe a little too lazy. Although, we did get to the gym. I didn't workout like I really wanted to. I tried. I just couldn't. Ever have one of those days? I was on the treadmill for 5 minutes and I really wasn't putting any effort into it. I persuaded Taylor to play basketball with me but even that didn't work. If basketballs not going to get me moving around, nothing will. I ended up lifting for about 30 minutes, so I guess that's better than nothing. After Taylor got picked up we were super lazy. We napped through a thunderstorm. It was wonderful. We didn't even need the sound machine. Mother nature lulled us to sleep.

This weeks goals:
  • Cook more food. I don't think we ate out that much, but I didn't have enough stuff for the week. There wasn't enough leftovers. I need to have more portion control, 'already know the points value' meals ready and waiting for me.
  • Exercise
  • Drink more water :(
  • Weigh in and maybe stay for the meeting. I'm notorious for rolling out after my weigh in. Maybe I could use the meeting for a little extra "umph" for the week.
  • Make a plan for next weekend. Remember, its Leigh and Jimi's engagement party at my parents. Mom's already requesting every crock pot in PA to be there, so that only means bad (but, oh, so delicious food) will be there.

Tomorrow's my first day at my new assignment. I'm looking forward to it. I'm sure I'll be bored to pieces, but that is a good thing. I'm already getting my meals ready and my "activities" for the day which include sudoku, study material for the Lt. exam, and my Valerie Bertinelli book. By the way, if you haven't read it, you should. I'm not a huge Valerie fan, but it really hits home when she talks about using eating as a coping mechanism. We all know she lost her weight on Jenny Craig, but the weight went on the same why it did for all of us.

I've also become mildly obsessed with Post Secret. It started out as some sort of project for this guy in Maryland where he asked people to mail him postcards with a secret on it. From a little project it turned into books and exhibition tour. I just got done reading (I guess its more browsing) two of the books and look forward to the other two as well. Some of the cards are stupid, some are funny, some make you realize there are people out there just like you and others make you look at your life and realize how good you have it.

That's it for now. I'm off to hang out in my bedroom and watch a little TV. Did I mention I love it? I promise, next week, pictures. All the curtains will be hung and hopefully flooring will be put it. I know, you just can't wait. The suspense is killing you!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

I just got one thing to say...

it's freakin' beautiful out. Its amazing how a nice day outside can make you feel like a million bucks. That and knowing you aren't super disgruntled anymore. Yippee! :) Now, I just wish I had a clothesline to hang my towels and sheets out on. That's a wonderful smell.

Oh, we've got one more blogger these days. My SIL Holly caved.

Friday, May 16, 2008

I got someone else addicted.

So, Amy got me hooked on blogging. Now Christy is. Its part of her recovery therapy after back surgery.

I swallowed my pride.

I feel like a hundred million pounds have been lifted off me. That's a lotta pounds, let me tell you. After my day/night from hell the other day I had a 24 hour shift to work through. Not surprisingly, I didn't sleep all that well on hell night. 5am came way too early yesterday. But, I tried to have an optimistic view on things. I tried to "make" myself have a good day at work. Ha, but that's like trying to "make" yourself love someone you despise.

Prior to a year ago I loved coming to work. Absolutely loved it. It was almost a stress reliever. I had great partners. It didn't matter how busy it was--I loved coming to work. At times I couldn't believe I got paid (sometimes even time and a half) to do it. Lately, they can't pay me enough to be there. Now, before every shift when I pull in the parking lot, I turn off my car, look straight ahead, then down at the clock, then say out loud, "you can still call out sick." How sad. I went from "I can't believe they pay me to do this" to "you can still call out sick."

Ask anyone I work with--I'm a shit magnet. For a good two to three years, if there was a bad or twisted, messed up call, I was probably on it. It was called my "black cloud." It was to the point that after Chuck retired and he saw something bad on the news he'd call me and say, "I saw an accident on the news and there was a black cloud in the sky...." and 90% of the time I was on the call. Lots of people say, "that's your job" which is true to an extent. We're trained and paid to see things no one else wants to see or deal with. But everyone gets "their call." The one that sticks in your head and doesn't go away. Or there's the series of similar calls that finally get the best of you. It got to the point that people thought it was funny. If there was a bad call that went out somewhere in the county, people would say "is Sarah working there today?"

It started six months into my career when I ran a police officer that was shot and killed. He was still alive when we got on the scene, which by the way, was very unsafe. On anything like a shooting, stabbing, domestic, anything unsafe, we typically wait til the scene is secured by police to ensure our safety. This time we didn't. My partner and I were friends with the police in that district and we made the decision we were going in to help him before the scene was safe. Dumb move if you ask me now, but at the time it seemed to make sense. I'd hope they'd do the same for me if I was in some shitty situation. I can honestly say I've never even seen a gun up close before let alone have one pointed at me. Actually make that about 10 of them with super-stressed police fingers on the other side of the trigger. Anytime we were outside of our unit we had police escort us with guns drawn -- at that point no one really knew who the shooter was. It ended up that not only did we treat the officer, who later in the shift we found out died, we treated the man who ended up being convicted and jailed for killing him.

Christy and I ran a beautiful little two or three year old girl who was on the verge of coding on us (about to stop breathing/heart stop). It was suspected that she was sexually abused and she had raging infections throughout her body. Her parents acted like there was nothing wrong with her and if I remember correctly, mom didn't even come to the hospital and dad tried to leave the hospital while they were working on her. There's another girl I worked with that every time we worked together we had a kid die. That same partner and I worked together on Christmas Eve together a few years back. I was working OT from 7p-7a prior to my 24 hour shift on Christmas day. In that 36 hours, I had 5 people die. A 21 month old girl, a 50 something year old nurse, and a 19 year old guy all on Xmas Eve and then two elderly people on Xmas Day. That's when I started to "need a break." My trend continued with a major multi-car accident on a major highway. That's one of those calls you get to and you have no idea where to even start. Two people died in that and I think we had a total of 15 patients.

I requested a shift change so Brian and I could be on the same shift. At the same time I asked for a break from a busy unit. They assigned me to a slower unit for a month. That was the worse month ever. The guy I worked with said he'll never work with me again because of the calls we had....really messed up car accidents where you're trying to get someone out of a car for over an hour only to know when the pressure is moved off them they're going to die right in front of you. Or the little year old girl that died after her family member was all cracked out and drunk, drove on the wrong side of the road and hit another car head on. Not only that, four other people were critically injured.

We were talking at work yesterday, most of the time its not the "stuff" we see. You have to understand we kinda have issues to do what we do to begin with. Blood, poop, guts, brains, insides...that doesn't gross me out. Dentures, feet, yucky skin does. A bad call isn't usually what you see (although sometimes it is). It's usually what you hear. What patients tell you. It sucks to be the last person someone talks to before they die. To have them look you in the eyes and say "I'm going to die" or "tell my kids I love them and be good." Its the day care provider who's psychotic because the baby she took perfect care of just died for no reason. The kid who looks at you like "can't you do something more to help me?" when in reality they're thinking they want their mommy. The guy that killed his family member but doesn't even question their condition because they're more concerned about themselves or running away from the police. Sometimes its not even about a patient. Once my partner and I had to treat their family member. It started off as a non-serious call but quickly deteriorated. Its hard to walk that fine line of treating a patient and being family. Its even harder to sit there and not be able to make your partner feel better. There's only so many times you can say "I'm sorry" or "are you okay?" or "do you need anything?"

After all of that, I asked for a break. I needed to get away. Not time off, but just to go to a station where the odds were lower that I'd run these calls. Instead I was sent somewhere busy to train someone. And then train another after the first finished. I have no patience. I hated coming to work. I brought all that anxiety and frustration home with me. I resented Brian because he liked his position as a supervisor at work. (We work together if I never mentioned that before. He's a Lt.) I was mad that I switched shifts "for Brian"to one who didn't "take care" of their own as much as the one I left. There were more empty promises on this shift. Then, not only that, I had to work in an area that I didn't ideally like. Our county is broken up in two sections, the north and south side. I was assigned to the busiest unit with Christy on the south side of the county. When I became friends with Brian he refused to even work OT on the south side. I loved it there. I always said I could work the remainder of my career there. Well, when I changed shifts, Brian became the south side Lt. That meant he couldn't be me supervisor since we were dating. That meant I had to go north. I again was resentful that not only did he love his position, but he got to work where I wanted to work. I felt like I had a lot of sticks and all the ends were shitty.

Then there was a partner issue. Its one thing to run shitty calls with someone you trust with your life. My former partners Chuck, Christy and Mike are some of my closest friends. I'm not ashamed to let them see me cry or know how I'm feeling, and trust me I rarely held back. Christy and Mike knew not to talk to me when I was tired. Both would pull over when they knew I needed a bolus of Diet Pepsi (fountain, no ice, please.) If we had a bad call after midnight when I was partners for Chuck we met the police at Dunkin' Donuts (its the only place open, I swear) and had milk--chocolate for Chuck, strawberry for me. Work was tolerable. It wasn't until the last year or so that I realized how important it is to have a good partner when working in an environment like I do. I need to have that trust that someone will have my back and fight for me if something bad is about to happen or if we're about to run the shittiest call out there. I'm sure its the same way with any job where you co-work with someone....but having someone that you mesh well with makes the job 10x easier and more enjoyable. Over the last year, I had none of that. I barely trusted people with patients let alone think that someone would watch out for me. We didn't have any "thing" like milk after midnight or whatever. There was nothing to make a bad call "better." Quite honestly I let people get to me and make me feel like I was bad at my job or had a bad attitude (after 11pm I do, but that's usually sleep deprivation and a need for Diet Pepsi--fountain, no ice.)

Finally, yesterday, I had it. I decided to look out for myself and I officially asked for a transfer. And I got it. I kinda had to swallow my pride, because I really never thought I wanted to be assigned where I'm going because its stereotypically the "lazy" place to work but I think I need it. If I want to get back to enjoying my job, I have to do it. If I want to have a good relationship with Brian I have to accept that I pray that I get a good partner again somewhere down the road. But just in case I don't, I'm using it as motivation to study for the Lt. promotional exam. I don't really know if I want to be an officer but more so I don't want to look back and wonder "could I be an officer now?" Even if I fail the exam, at least I can't question it.

And hopefully, my black cloud will float over someone else's head. Actually after rereading all this, I think I want to rent or read Bringing out the Dead. I saw it years ago but it meant nothing to me. It was just a movie. I think it will have a whole new meaning.

I'm still doing well on my WW. My motivation seems to be working. I have barely been snacking. I ran the other day and find I almost like to do it. It kinda scares me. :) Hopefully the WI next week will be successful. And hopefully with my new work change, my stress eating will go down significantly.

Oh, bedroom update: I love it. Love, love, love it. The curtains are hung and look good. I still need to accessorize, but at least I have something to work with. Ironically, we are getting rid of everything that we originally started off with, but that's okay. We really like how the room is coming together. Brian said he'll put the flooring in next week. I can't wait til its all done! :)

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Day & Night from Hell

If I could erase today, I would. It started off bad from the moment of waking. I should have just stayed in bed. But, I didn't. I had some issues this morning which resulted in a fight with Brian. Conveniently, I had a counseling appointment which I went to where I pretty much told my counselor I'm getting nothing out of them, except being $130 poorer every week. I don't think he liked that very much, but whatever. One good thing is I went to JCPenney's after and found curtains I really like. I returned the others and bought the new ones and I think they'll look fabulous. Hopefully, Friday they'll get hung.

Brian left the house around 530 to work OT. I decided after supper to go to the gym. I got all ready to go, walked out to the car and realized I had no keys. I called Brian (who has the spare set) and we decided instead of him coming home, to call a locksmith. He called them for me and the guy was supposed to be there in an hour. I decided to run around the block a little since I had nothing better to do and when I got back to the house, I, well, broke into my own house. I called Brian, who then called the locksmith to cancel. Mr Locksmith apparently wasn't happy and wanted us to pay a fee for coming out even though he never got there. Brian didn't agree, they had a pissing match and they hung up. Well, this person started calling and calling and calling and eventually came to the house knocking on the door. I was really freaked out because it brought up memories from years ago. I had a guy who stalked me (and about 50 other women) but he's ultimately in jail now. So I'm alone with someone repeatedly calling. I basically locked myself in the basement (although I don't have a door, so no lock either.) Luckily two of my friends and my ex-husband who was leaving a local hospital after visiting his newly born nephew (Congrats Sarah, Sam & baby Simon) came by to stay with me until Brian came home from work. The police had to get involved--nothing major--basically a courtesy call saying stop calling. When all was said and done I had over 18 calls from this person. How nuts? I can't imagine doing that, but I guess not everyone thinks like me. I'm very grateful to have friends that I can count on. Unfortunately for them, the couple I spoke of have been there for me thru quite a few bad things over the past year. I owe them lots. And it speaks highly of my ex to still come and protect me when things got bad. He told me he would beat the guy with his flip-flop. (Inside joke. He said he'd never wear flip flops while we were together and now he's sporting them all the time.) And I'm pretty sure Brian feels the same way about all of them as well. I'm here safe and sound now with Brian and Baxter. I know Bastard woulda had my back. Unfortunately he was pretty lazy and didn't move his fat butt off the couch for most of the events. All I wanted to do was go to the gym and go to sleep early, but its now 1030pm and I'm finally off to bed. Oh, for this day to be over. I pray tomorrow's better. Although I have to be at work for 24 hrs. Ugh.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Chinese Food for Christmas

The bedroom looks awesome. After all the paint samples and wasted quarts/pints of paint, we finally found a color we really like. The room looks a million times better. I can't wait til the flooring is in too. I think we're really going to enjoy it.

I'm not techno-savvy enough to figure out how to put a video from the internet up here, but if you get a chance, check out this video on YouTube. I saw something about it on the local news a little bit ago. The kid that directed this video is a senior from Towson University and entered the video into a contest MTV sponsored. He made it to the top ten so now everyone can vote so he can win. Anyway, the video/song is called "Chinese Food on Christmas" and if you are .Jewish or are friends with anyone who is its a must see. I find it very funny, as did Brian, who's Jewish.

I weighed in today. I lost 1.8 pounds. Not bad for not trying. I figured since I'm really doing this now I better get a "set" weigh in day and have a starting weight so I can track my progress. I haven't weighed in since the end of April. Tonight we're dining on rotisserie chicken, snow peas and salad, and Smart Taste pasta with a little spray butter and red-fat Parmesan cheese sprinkled on it.

Thats it for now.
We never ended up planning our trip to San Diego last night. We ended up at a Japanese Steakhouse with our friends Missy & Nick. It was a lot of fun. We love to go out with other couples but don't get to very often. Unfortunately a lot of the people we know work shift work as well and that doesn't usually leave a lot of days that mesh to make plans.

As for San Diego, our plan is to meet Brian's brother, Rick, his wife, Holly, and their kids, Sydney and Ryan, out there then head to Lego Land, the zoo and possibly the Wild Animal Park. It is still up in the air whether or not we'll head to Tucson, where they live. I don't know how much time we are going to have.

I'm really hoping we do the Wild Animal Park. One of the guys that lives at Station 12 told me he grew up in San Diego and visiting Wild Animal Park is a must. He made it sound like I get to touch wild animals. I can't wait. I just told Christy yesterday that I keep telling Brian I want a penguin, a seal, a sea lion and a fuzzy bear to live with us. I think the penguin, seal, and sea lion can live in the bathtub and the bear can curl up with us in bed as long as he manicures his claws.
Everyone else seems pretty excited about Lego Land. I think it will be cool to see what they have built, but I'm not a huge Lego person so I'm more interested in animals.

It should be fun. Brian's kids get along really well with Sydney so it should be fun. We're still trying to figure out if Taylor can go with us. Its a little harder to pull her out of school as compared to the younger ones. I know Brian's pretty excited about it. He said we almost sound like a "normal" family doing vacations with other family members. And, like I mentioned in a prior post, I absolutely love San Diego so no matter where we go I'll be happy. I have a feeling, though, after going with kids I'm going to want to go back without them sometime (hint, hint....I hope Brian has a running list of "ideas" for me for the future!).

Today, Brian's fixing (re-fixing) the drywall in the bedroom and starting to paint. I made a few good purchases at Penney's last night so I'm getting excited about how the room is coming together. I hope it turns out like it looks in my head. We bought a TV for the bedroom on sale at Best Buy. Its the same 32" flat screen that is in the basement, only for $300 cheaper than it was this time last year (dammit!). It was an open box with everything in it. We are happy with the one we have in the basement, so we decided to get it. Brian's going to mount it to the wall and he's talking about framing it. He tells me he doesn't know what he's doing (which means he does) so I'm hopeful it will look good. We have two guys coming today to work up a plan/quotes for our deck/patio. Hopefully it will be a little cheaper than the first. Our house plans are coming together and pretty reasonable price wise so far. Hopefully that will continue.

We found out yesterday my sister, Leigh, and her fiance, Jimi, are having an engagement party at my parents over Memorial Day weekend. We're taking the kids up with us. They've met some of my family but they've never gone to PA with us before. I think they'll like it. Something different for them and they get to meet my family that will never come down to MD like my Grampy. We think while there, we will take them the Coal Mine Tour in Scranton. I grew up in Northeast PA which used to be a big coal mining area. Well, my particular town, Forest City, was initially used for lumber, hence the "forest" in its name. That brought in the railroad which was utilized to haul out lumber, and eventually coal. Immigrants from Europe came over to mine and thats how basically all of NEPA came to. And of course, they brought their wonderful food like
pierogi , kielbasa, and halushki. By the way, if you by any chance are familiar and mild to moderately addicted to these foods, Brian and I highly suggest attending Pierogi Fest in Indiana, just outside of Chicago. We went last summer and it was a blast. Brian has grown quite fond of pierogis since we started dating, as you can tell.

I'd be lying if I said I didn't really go to Chicago to try the pizza. This was at Giordano's....good but definitely no floppy slice.

K, I've procrastinated enough. I've got to get ready for quote #1 to come at noon. I'm hoping its less than $9500.

Monday, May 12, 2008

The morning after...

My SIL Amy left me a comment on my last post and after thinking about it, I wasn't really even pissed anymore. (Not at her post, but at the events that took place at work yesterday and the stupid one pound.) I wrote back to her (and I'm only writing this because I don't usually read peoples comments unless I'm leaving one...) that seriously, they pay me lots and lots of money to stay within a weight range. Its really the least I can do. So, I'm back to counting points. (I still hate those stupid points) but I'm journaling. And Brian and I are going to the gym. But first, we're painting the bedroom. Yippee! Its going to be dark brown with the possibility of an accent wall, but we'll see how it goes. And while I'm waiting for him to come home I'm on a search for new recipes, particularly crockpot ones. I'll let you know if I try something new.

Tonights project is to look into planning our trip to San Diego with Brian's brother, wife & kids in Sept. Its going to be awesome. I'm very excited. My trip to San Diego in high school was the ONLY trip in my life that I didn't want to come home from. I'll try to post some of our plans later.

motivation

It just took me 2 hours to get home from work, thanks to the monsoon outside. I hate the rain, especially driving in it. But, holy hell, this was nuts. As my needle headed towards "E" I decided I was going to get off 95 and get some gas, a Diet Pepsi and maybe a snack. I swear I was so close to the exit I could spit and reach it but someone else decided to wreck their car and close all four lanes of 95 North. Ugh, I was aggravated. Not because I was afraid of running out of gas, but well, I just wanted to get home. Plus I had to pee. I didn't realize I had to pee til I started to think about the possibility of me sitting there for hours. Once I realized 95 turned into a parking lot I had plenty of time to sit and do nothing. I read the remainder of my People magazine. After that I just thought. I've got plenty to think about these days. Seems I always do. But anyway, I was trying to think back as to what my motivation was to be so vigilant when I lost 70 pounds or so my first go round on WW. I came up with nothing. I have no idea. Something must have done it because I went to every meeting, I never ever gained. It was wonderful. I had all the will power in the world. I know it wasn't something like a wedding or a big event or even sadly just to be healthier. I'm half wondering if I found my motivation again. Hear me out....

So, every year we're supposed to get PPA's (evaluations) for work. I got a call from my Lt. this evening saying they didn't accept my PPA because I was over the weight limit for my height and that wasn't satisfactory. What?! I was one pound over. He changed it saying I could have peed and lost the weight, which I agree with but the problem I have with it is the weight he had on my PPA was what I weighed at my yearly work physical. That was in the fall or early winter. I weight at least 10 pounds more now. When I got hired there, I knew it was a physical job and I have in writing what I'm supposed to be weigh according to my height. There's a reason they have that paper in our packet. I guess it worked out that I was only 1 pound over for the evaluation and that was a "workable" number, but to be honest, I'm not good with lying. I'm not really good with fudging the numbers. Especially, now, knowing that I'm almost 10 pounds over what I should be.

I never know what next years officer is going to be like. They might be a stickler for the rules and I really can't argue something that's written in black and white. It would be a shame to work my behind off and be a good employee only to have a not so great evaluation because I was over my weight limit, even if by only one pound.

So, we'll see how that goes. I've been really good today. I even stopped on my way home and finally got my Diet Pepsi and instead of getting something super junky, I got a bag of hard pretzels thinking they are that much harder to chew. I only ate one in the time I could have easily chowed down a bag of chips or candy.

We have a lot of projects to do this week. But I'm definitely going back to cooking. I'm so much more on plan that way. We are splurging and going to a Japanese Steakhouse at some point. Brian always wants to go there and I am usually not in the mood for it. This week, I promised, we could go there for supper.

Oh, its a day late, but Happy Mother's Day to all the mommys out there!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

I should have kept a running tab of how many times I type "I'm doing WW this week" or "todays a bad day." Ugh. They've all been bad days lately. I'm sitting here trying to figure out why. I mean I know I have issues with stress eating and all. Hell, it happened tonight. We went to a retirement dinner tonight and a very touchy subject came up and I could say nothing. All I wanted to do (besides change the subject as quickly as possible, which even if it did, it would still stuck in my head) is run either to my right and get a drink from the bar or to my left and shovel some BBQ meatball appetizers (oh so yummy) in my face. I couldn't change the subject very easily because, well, I wasn't even in the conversation. I was just standing there. I couldn't have my way at the bar because I had to be at work at 11p and alcohol and driving medic units is frowned upon. And then there were the meatballs. The oh so yummy meatballs. Well, here's almost exactly how my thinking went....oh so tasty, they'll make me feel good. But, I'll have to wait in line. And then people will talk bad about taking a mountain of meatballs. Plus, there's lots of drunk people staggering around (firemen can drink) so someone will accidently bump into me and the top of my meatball mountain will roll off my plate and down my white pants and then my meal "will be complete." (Christy & Brian will understand that one....) So, instead I stood there and listened probably with a fake smile on my face to the conversation that I hate oh so much.

Now its hours later, and even though I know I'm not hungry, I'm still pissed for some reason. And to make that "pissiness" go away something delicious would make me feel better. A nice floppy piece of Ratsie's pizza. (I'm working in College Park tonight. Talking about cravings....all the deliciousness I used to eat here when I went to UMD....) Its like my craving hasn't been met so my body's mad at me. I know thats not true. Its all in my head, but its like a bad habit, you know?

I can't blame all my eating on stress. I like to eat. I love food. And when something is delicious I can't get enough. Now, don't let me fool you into thinking I'm a bottomless pit. I just eat well more than a normal serving. I just amaze myself at how everyday I can start off by saying "today's the day" and maybe even type it in a blog and then by 3pm I'm back to my old ways. I'm having a rough time these days buttoning up my big girl work pants. I have all the motivation or reasons in the world to get back down to where I was even a few months ago. But I can't seem to get it thru my head when its time to make those big decisions. I have good intentions, but its just not working. So frustrating. Anyone else have these problems? I know I probably think too much about it, but if you are reading this and don't have issues with weight you probably get tired of reading the same post in different formats week after week after week. Most of you don't know me when I was "fat Sarah." You've probably never even seen a picture of me at 240 lbs and think I'm exaggerating. Probably the only one that reads this that knows I used to be that big is my ex-husband. But I obsess about it because I'm petrified of going back to that. So, my question to you, is how do you make good choices? I can't remember how to. I don't remember how I had so much motivation, so much will power that I could order a side salad from McDonalds instead of chicken nuggets and fries. I remember doing it though. I just don't remember how. I've tried tricking myself or reasoning, but when the time comes lately I find myself doing exactly what I don't want to be doing.

And sweets? Don't even get me started. Freakin' Brian and Christy. Got me addicted to cookies. And Amy on cake. Damn you! :)

K, gotta call. oh poop :(

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

itchy scratchy watery.....:(

I feel like a commercial for Benadryl. I hate allergies. I never used to have them until high school and then whammo! they hit me. I can't complain too much because over the past few years it hasn't been too horrible. I expect every morning I'll be stuffy and drippy and then I move on with my day. Somedays my ear hurts, others I need to actually take some medicine but today allergies went to my eyes and they weren't very nice. Meano allergies. I felt sinusey (I'm just making up words left and right here...) last night at the gym, but didn't think much of it. I figured some sleep would do me good. 445am came and I still felt crappy but I didn't want to call out of work. I got there this morning and wasn't exactly pleasant. I just didn't feel good. I felt all out of it. So, after I kinda screwed up on a call, well, not really screw up but didn't really give it my all on the call (hey that rhymes!) because I was more focused on how I didn't feel good, I figured it was best for me to take a sick day. I feel really guilty about sick days. I don't want to be looked at as someone who abuses them. I've taken a few over the past few years, but they were all legit. Nothing like calling out sick while I'm sipping some foo-foo drink on an island or anything. So just as I started feeling guilty for asking to go home, the tears started. Stupid watery itchy eyes. Then I knew it was a sign from God (or pollen) that it was time to go home, take some Benadryl and nap for a few hours.

I left work around 130pm and decided to stop by Patient First to get a new allergy medicine. They are my PCP but I'm seriously thinking about changing that. First off even though it says all over my chart they are my primary care provider, the doc (who was really a PA but called himself Dr) told me to follow up with my PCP to get a name of an allergist. Um, duh. I have a new script for a new allergy med out there which I'm thinking will make me sleepy. Exactly what I don't want. But I wasn't going to sit there and argue with the PA about it. I'll take it and see how it works and try to schedule something with an ENT or allergist. Now, how to find one without randomly picking a name out of a book, I don't know.

I'd just like to know the cause of the stupid stuff. It used to be dust mites and mold and no pollen. Maybe now its pollen. Maybe I need to dust the house better. (ha, or maybe just dust it in general.) But that will be a project for tomorrow, because right now I'm headed towards a Benadryl induced nap.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Oy.

$18K. Yep that was our quote for the deck. Last time, the guy gave us a rough estimate of $7K. We weren't expecting 18K. That's a car. At least I can't wreck it and it hopefully will appreciate in value, or at least the house would. He could tell by our faces we didn't like that number. He snipped $ as much as he could and then we made a minor design change which brought the quote to $9500. That's better. More than we expected, but better. The problem is we love the design. Its like he teased us. You could have all this everyday for only $9500. But me being me (sometimes that's not a bad thing--especially when it comes to impulse buys and spending $$) I have to think it over for a very long time. Okay maybe not that long but long enough to now pretend I'm on that landscape design show on HGTV or whatever channel where three designers compete for the job. Now, I just have to find two more designers and have them fight over me. Oh to have three men fight over me. Stop. I'm getting off track. I'm supposed to be typing about decks. Dammit why did it have to look so good? Who knows, maybe we'll decide on using them as our builders, but I don't want to think I could have had something equally good for much less.

On another note, did I mention we love Craig's List? Oh, we do. We're still on a lucky roll with it. A lady is here now buying our lawn mower for $200. And today while Christy-sitting we bought a much friendly lawn mower for our postage stamp yard off her. Brian basically sold the contents of his apartment to a girl who just got her first apartment. How easy was that? Very convenient.
Speaking of Craig's List, we're off to pick up Bella's new used bike. She outgrew last years Barbie version so she's getting an upgrade for $10. Fancy shmancy if you ask me. And she won't know the difference. Plus we get to sell her old one to another loving bike wanting girl.

I dont have a title.

Did I mention I love my gym? I mean really love it. Never thought those words would be coming outta this mouth, did ya? Well, they did. I spent almost an hour and a half there last night. I ran on the treadmill for....get this...1.5 miles. Thats a big deal for me. I never used to last longer than 4 minutes running on one and I did 1.5 miles. I was very excited for myself. I still don't have a whole lot of endurance so I got tired and had to stop, but I'm sure with time that will get better. Then I played basketball for a bit. Ok, not really play, but I shot around for a good 20 minutes. I tried to get in a pick up game but guys aren't all the quick to pick a girl. Too bad for them. I saw some of the boys play and I was better than a lot of them. Give it time, they'll eventually give in. They used to do that when I went to Univ. of MD. I used to go to the rec center to play and there was always a full court and an open court play. I used to shoot around until finally around 930 at night they'd start to run out of players. Guys would walk past me go out in the hallway and yell "anyone wanna play?" I'd let them find no one then I'd chirp in. After about two games, they'd be mad when I'd leave. Funny how that works.

So anyway, after basketball, I used the machines and lifted for a while. I was pretty impressed at how much I can do with my legs. I was doing a leg press and pressed 245 lbs. Too bad I could probably only do like 30 pounds using my upper body. It will all come with time. I'm finding I'm not as obsessed with the scale as I have been recently. Just with a few workouts, clothes are fitting a little better and my legs are toning up. I'm very okay with that.

Today Brian and I Christy-sat. Its kinda like babysitting but for big people named Christy. She was my partner at Medic 29 a few years back. She had back surgery last week and needs someone to watch for a week or two till she's back on feet. Or can sit down to pee on her own. Talk about bonding. :) Ha. J/k. She surprisingly looked better, well, I shouldn't say look...she looked like I expected her to, but after being on bedrest for this long and knowing she's going to be like that for a while, I pictured her to be more sad or something, but she seemed to be in pretty good spirits. Hopefully she'll have a speedy recovery. And if anyone knows of any good blogs or myspace pages for her to stalk, put them in my comments. I'm sure she'd appreciate stalking some new people. Ha!

Now we're waiting for the deck guy to come with his proposal. I'm very much looking forward to it. Well, not so much the dishing out a bunch of $ part, but the deck part. Christy moved into a new house last year and today was the first time I ever saw it. She has a really awesome deck off the back. I guess its a screened in sunroom/deck. Whatever it is, it was very nice to sit and each lunch on it. Ok, deck guy is here, so I'll have an update later. yippee!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

I want more days like this

I think its so interesting how some days I'm ravenous for any and all food, while others I could care less if I ate at all. Today, I had some Golden Grahams w/ milk for breakfast, a 4 point sandwich with light chips for lunch, a banana as a snack, a WW oatmeal 1 pt bar on the way to a call and just now at 945pm ate supper because I felt I should. And even that was only a Lean Cuisine for 7 pts. I really could have done without it. Whats the deal? Why can't I have more "non-hungry" days?

I'm listening to this audio self-help book that my counselor suggested. Personally, I think the eight CD's could be combined into one, but anyway, the gist of it is our thoughts make us what we are. If we are depressed or negative most of the time we make ourselves that way by thinking it. Like me, I could dwell on my big butt. Oh, how could anyone love me and my behind? But while I dwell on making it smaller, I sleep next to someone every night who very much likes it. There's a process in this audio book that is supposed to teach you to basically flip negative views into positive. I get the impression that the mind is a mean and nasty thing sometimes. I'm not going to counseling for my big butt, but it was a good example. And it seems so obvious. The more bad stuff you think about yourself or you think others think of you, even if they might not even think it, brings you down and can spiral you into depression, seclusion, addiction, etc. I think we've all got a little of that going on. I just found it interesting. I'm actually trying to learn how to take negative events that have happened to me in the past and turn them around to positive thoughts so hopefully they'll get out of my head. Hopefully it will work. If not, the book has definitely given me a different insight to other parts of my life.

After the spa/gym

The gym was awesome. The facial was awesomer. So good in fact I now get the right to make up new words like awesomer. I did the facial first. I think it was supposed to be quiet and relaxing but the girl doing it talked the whole time. I was okay with it. I talked back. Our families both grew up in NE PA so we talked about that, we talked about our jobs, and vacations...I'm jealous she went to Italy twice (she's Sicilian). She loves pizza like I do and she told me in Sicily you order pizza by weight. You tell them how big a slice you want. Apparently the food in Italy is good like here but ten times better because its all fresh ingredients. Now I want to go to Italy. Rome is her favorite place on Earth. I think I might like it. So, needless to say, I'll go back to her. She was obviously very knowledgeable in her field and you could tell she enjoyed her work (that and she said it at least 100 times). When it came time to buy products she wasn't pushy. Actually she told me the "must haves" and said we'd work other products in if I liked it and could actually maintain the washing/moisturizing first. Plus the bill was great. Facial, products and tip was $150. Still alot of money, but considering what that $150 covered, it was significantly less than other places. And I got a free parting gift of a body moisturizer which I'm guessing retails for at least $30. This is my first time using salon quality face products. I hate to say it but there really is a big difference. I told Brian last night the way my face and skin feels really makes me feel better overall. I hate feeling slimy. The moisturizer I bought is a gel that feels sticky like aloe vera gel when you put it on but after it dries skin feels so soft and taut. Like the good way your skin feels when you've been at the beach or something...after you clean up from laying out. I think you can tell I like it. She suggested I try the mineral makeup thats become so popular since most of it is light and has SPF in it. I tried it once before and I wasn't able to get the color to match and it made such a mess. She said they're supposed to come out with a new self contained foundation (so you don't have to tap it out of the top of the container and make a mess) and sell it at the spa. Anyone have any luck with that kind of makeup? I know one of my biggest complaints was the concealer. I get dark circles under my eyes and I didn't feel like it provided good coverage. Ok, getting back on track...

We worked out afterwards. Brian and I will definitely be going to the gym quite a bit. I was kinda rushed, it felt like, but I think the next time I go will be a little better. I didn't like the one machine, although really neat. It was a stepper, elliptical, and something else all in one. You can make it whatever kinda workout you want based on your stride. It hurt me. I'm just not ready for it. That machine had a cable TV in it. Definitely makes the workout fly by. I ended up on the treadmill for a while before playing basketball. I was so excited to shoot around. I lifted a little afterwards and then showered to come home. I was going to go today before work, but I'm sore now. I don't want to overdo it and not be able to walk at 230am when I'm on a call. Maybe I'll try to go tomorrow after my nap.

I didn't weigh in today. I didn't want to be disappointed. I really am in such a good mood since the spa and the gym that I didn't want it to be crushed to smithereens because I didn't lose. This morning I weighed myself on my bathroom scale and its the same as last week. :(

Thursday, May 1, 2008

We'll be buff in no time

How excited am I? Pretty damn excited. Brian and I drove up to Bel Air to look at the gym. Initially it was just going to be me joining (if I liked it) but by the end of the tour the whole family is a member. It was awesome. I can honestly say I can't wait to go. Its huge. It is laid out so well that even during the busy time (while we were there) you'd never even know it. It has a cardio section with TVs in the equipment. It has a weight area. It has two basketball courts, 5 pools (a few of which are under a dome that comes down in the summer, a spa, multiple locker rooms, a few "class" rooms, a little cafe (serving Starbucks--I think that is why Brian joined) and then there is the kids area that I wish I was under 11 so I can go play in it. Its awesome. They have a "tree" the kids can climb which was made by the same people that built the Life tree in Disney. There is a rock climbing wall and a bunch of class stuff for them to do.

Their trainers aren't just trainers because they completed a 24 hour class and got a piece of paper. They are rated (and charge more) based on their education, most of which have some sort of rehabilitation training. You are assigned a trainer based on your needs, not by who has an opening at 9am. Same goes with their classes. I'm interested in group class but intimidated, so they have a girl that sits down with you and decides which classes are best suited for you. Then she introduces you to the instructor and some of the students. Its like being in elementary school.

I mentioned they have a spa. Of course, with an opening tomorrow afternoon at 1pm for a facial so my other one has been cancelled. This place offers members pricing so its almost $30 cheaper at the gym. Not only that, the gym is close to just about every store you can think of so we can easily fit the gym into our errands.

So, needless to say, I'm pretty excited. I'm even more excited because the more I work out the less I have to worry about WW. That is worth it in itself.

Pamper me

I decided to start with the facial before going to a doctor. I figure its more relaxing. :) Plus if I don't like it I or don't get results I want I can do the doc thing later. I've decided on the Spa on the Avenue--close to home and I've heard some good stuff about it. I'm also on my way to Bel Air Athletic Club (tonight or tomorrow) to see if I like their gym. I'm hoping I find a place soon that I actually want to workout at.

WW: :( boo. Well, I shouldn't boo yet. Maybe I should throw away the bathroom scale. I've been so good this week, up until last night, and the scales not really budging. I'm not going to claim I've been an angel over the past few months with my eating and working out because I've been far from it, but I think I want to make sure that there is nothing medical going on either. This may be TMI but its really no secret I have female issues. Last May I had to leave work because of a 2.5 inch ovarian cyst (my first). Periods are either non-stop or non-existant and no birth control over the past year has worked to regulate it. I was told to remain on the pill to control the cysts, but around New Years my doc took me off them to see if my body would "jump start" back to normal. It hasn't. Not having periods has been wonderful, but I've noticed quite a few other side effects along with the reoccuring cysts (which are a pain, no pun intended). Now I'm wondering if this weight gain or it being hard to lose may all be tied together. Like I said, I'm not trying to get off the hook and say I've given it my all, but I want to be sure its not a symptom of something else. So, along with all my other "healthy me" stuff I'm going to do a follow up with the OB/GYN and make sure everything is okay in there.