Tuesday, January 25, 2011

2 in One Month

Wow, I'm on a roll, right?  2 blog posts in the same month!

Okay, let's play catchup.  First off, I am trying to get caught up on all your blogs.  Usually I'm able to knock off 10-12 posts or more while at work on slow nights, but I'm precepting a student nurse who will graduate in March and feel I ought to at least  pretend  to work.  She's doing so well, though, she should be finished with me in a couple more weeks.

What else? Well, Workers' Comp is still "investigating" my arm re-inury, but in the meantime they've sent me to one of their docs.  Xrays show no fractures, so it seems I have strained my rotator cuff and my deltoid muscle.  I'm on Celebrex ($130.00 for a 30-day supply!), Flexeril as needed (knocks me for a loop!), physical therapy, and a 40# lifting restriction with no overhead work.  This means Christmas may extend into February.

Yep, the tree's still up. I don't turn the lights on anymore, though.

The PT scheduler, knowing I work nights, tried to be helpful and made my appointments for 8am Mon-Wed-Fri.  People, I don't see the sunrise unless I've worked all night. This getting up at 6:15 to be showered and dressed and at someplace by 8am is killing me! It's not by accident that I work night shift.

Appointments are ruling my life these days:
     Last Tues. I had a repeat mammogram and ultrasound at 10:45 (just fluid cysts again), met with the home medical folks at 1pm to get a new C-PAP mask, and saw the WC doc at 2:45. 

     Today I had PT at 8am, saw my ENT doc at 9:30 and endured the yearly GYN exam at 10:30. 

     Fri. I will have PT at 8:00, get a bone density scan at 9:30am and try for a hair appointment by noon.

     Next Tues. I only have 2 appointments (so far): dental cleaning and a WC follow-up Whatever will I do with myself the rest of the day? 

No sewing or quilting yet this month.  I tend to hunch my shoulders when machine sewing, so that doesn't work, and the forward motion of rotary cutting is one that causes difficulty. I need to dig around and find some handwork to take with me to all these appointments. 

In the meantime, I ordered a Kumiloom starter kit and additional book.  Have you ever heard of kumihimo?  I hadn't til a couple of months ago when someone in blogland mentioned it (can't remember who.)  The starter kit had a few strands of yarn in it, and easy as it looked, my braid was still a little lumpy.  Guess the tension wasn't even.

Anyway, look at some of these examples:


Examples of braids

I wish you could get a closer look, but that's a fish with bubbles coming out of his mouth--so cute!

How clever is this one?

Not your average friendship bracelets, wouldn't you say?  Apparently some of the art quilters are using this in their work, too, especially with the beading.   I have a lot of beads left from when I used to bead earrings many moons ago, and other sizes that I've added over the years.  I love beads, but really haven't used them in quilting except for that one daisy wallhanging.  I can see myself playing with them again, but doubt I'll ever aspire to this level:

In the true traditional form, you should be on your knees in front of the maru dai, and lifting each thread with the open fingers and hands--not between the thumb and finger.  Very graceful and oriental, but I don't do knees. Or grace.

But I can see how it would be very meditational to work on one of these.

One thing the month has brought, however, has been a LOT of reading.  So far I've read the entire Hunger Games trilogy: The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay(Yeah, I know they're considered young adult fiction, but I liked them. The author really knows how to grab your attention and not let go.)

I've also just finished Sundays at Tiffany's, by James Patterson, author of the Alex Cross novels and the Women's Murder Club mysteries.  It was fluff, a quick read with an interesting premise, but not much thought or substance to it.  No matter. Getting interrupted to go from one waiting room to another requires light reading.

Just to let you know that I do read non-fiction, one of the books I'm currently reading is Handbook to Practical Disaster Preparedness.  No, I am not a Rush Limbaugh fan.  Nor do I want to learn how to skin a squirrel with a pocketknife or eat pine bark.  However, we've had a rash of snowstorms the last couple of years, and I thought it might just be a good idea to figure out a preparedness plan, what to stock, etc., especially since I've had to leave Jack here alone while I spent a couple of days sleeping at the hospital or hotel. If I can have everything together and easily accessible for him, I won't worry as much when I'm gone.  This book encourages you to look at your own situation, what emergencies are likely to occur, and any special needs  you may have, such as small children, pets or disabled adults.  This guy's writing style is  conversational, easy to read, and, well, practical.

Last, but certainly not least, is the $376 plumbing bill today.  Sheesh.  Yesterday I spent several hours trying to plunge and then snake a plugged commode, and the only result was more arm pain.  I felt somewhat validated today when the plumber didn't have any success, either.  So we have a new toilet in the master bath, and a new floater thingy in the guest bedroom's toilet.  I'd post a picture, but really doubt you'd want me to.  Suffice it to say the commode is taller, which is easier for Jack, and it's low-flow. That's not what I would have chosen, but between that and fixing the slow leak, we should see the water bill go down considerably next month.

This has been an expensive month!  If this keeps up and if WC denies my claim, I may meet our annual deductible of $3500.00 all by myself in the first 32 days of the year.

More snow and sleet in the forecast for tomorrow, but no accumulation is "expected".  Doesn't mean it won't happen, though.  But at least we don't have the same problems as this guy:

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Snow Day

Can the month be 1/3 gone already??  I had bigger plans for January than this.

Christmas is still in force here at the Scraps household.  Tree's still up, inside and outside lights are still up (but not on!) and there are still gifts in their boxes, waiting for someone to play with them. Seems all I've done is work and lie around in bed or on the sofa. The sinus infection left me so congested, I couldn't use my C-PAP for 9 days, so sleeping was a distant memory, and I think that's why it's taken so long to get over this virus thing.

But Friday night I found the right combination of meds and got my first night's sleep in over a week and wow, what a difference!  The bathrooms are now cleaned, groceries were bought, the sewing room was put back together, Mount Washmore has almost been conquered and there was even some cooking done! 

And then it snowed.

And it snowed some more. 

And I shoveled.  And shoveled. Then the snowplow came and re-deposited snow onto my driveway.
I have a love/hate relationship with the snowplow.

Thurs. night I was put on call, which was great for me, since I was so tired, but they called Fri., Sat, and Sun. to ask me to work.  I felt really guilty saying no, but I had worked sick for 3 shifts, and was exhausted and the house was a mess.  When I got up Mon. morning, I was so glad I'd said no.  There was no way I'd have made it home until 3pm when the snowplows finally got to my road, and I have to work Tues. and Wed. nights as it is. 

Tandi amused herself by attempting to prune the rosebushes for me.

But after sticking with me through repeated shovelings, even Tandi was losing her enthusiasm for the snow.
So was I.

Then my little Halloween helpers came by and spent some time re-posing Napoleon Bone-apart.

Napoleon sported a Santa hat for Christmas; now he just serves to remind me where the edge of the driveway is.

Maybe on my next offday, I can get the cars taken care of, and on the one after that, take down Christmas, and THEN maybe I'll get to sew.