7 Quick Takes: Halloween Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Halloween Take #1. My conspiracy theorist costume.

My costume.

— 2 —

Halloween Take #2. Here is a close-up picture of some of my conspiracy theories.

A close-up of my costume.

— 3 —

Halloween #3. Even my prince of darkness got in on the action! (And yes, he is planning to kill me while I sleep.)

Minion and me.

— 4 —

Halloween Take #4. I made my dad a pumpkin pi(e).

The pumpkin pi(e) I made for my dad.

— 5 —

An explanation. Three years ago, one of my baristas did an aluminum foil hat for Halloween and I had been wanting to try it. I also put ~30 labels all over my body with the names of various conspiracies. The aluminum foil hat was actually super easy and it fit over my bun. I didn’t wear it all day because it was really hot, but it did the trick.

— 6 —

Coffee Take #1.

Yeah, this is totally me...

— 7 —

Prayer request. Please keep the Witte family in prayer as they bury little Preston today. They were one of our amazing church families in Minnesota, and my heart breaks for them. Also, please wear blue for him today if you can.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: Things on My Mind Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Why do cats pick the most inconvenient place to sleep? Currently, my prince of darkness is curled up on my feet, which is not the most comfortable place to have him. CATS!

— 2 —

My post-op appointment on Tuesday. My lovely Ukrainian OB/GYN showed me pictures of my insides at my appointment on Tuesday. Apparently, my adhesions were more serious than they expected and they were also taken aback by the vascularity they found, so my surgery took longer than expected. It was strange to see pictures of my ovaries–I expected them to look a bit different. In any case, he was happy with the progress of my healing and took the time to answer my questions. He has a very dry sense of humor, and it was good to see it come out. If I need any further treatment, I will request him specifically.

— 3 —

My students. I have several students who are receiving Accounting help from me and one who is getting general computer help. My mind is pondering ways to help them as well as the predicament one is in. (I just sent that student a “pep talk”.)

— 4 —

My CPAP mask. My old one was irritating me, so I decided to try a new one. I think it might grow on me after I get through this first adjustment period.

— 5 —

My crocheting. I made a fatal mistake in a crocheting project and had to frog the whole thing… twice. I’m on try #3 and it just might work out for me. I need to just do that at home and bring my nephew’s baby/big boy blankie when I work with students as that one is more brainless crocheting.

— 6 —

Daniel’s 22q clinic appointment. It’s a “clinic” appointment, so we’re going to be there for HOURS while specialists come in and out of the room.

— 7 —

Local elections. We have an unqualified outsider seeking to unseat our mayor… who was qualified BEFORE she was elected, has gone back to school and achieved MORE qualifications in her two terms as mayor, and who is supported by the town police and firefighters. I’ve lived in Mount Vernon for longer than our mayor’s challenger and *I* am more qualified for the office than she is, so I can’t understand why she is bothering to run.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: Recovery Edition

7 Quick Takes

My hysterical hysterectomy was on Tuesday. Here are the deets on recovery.

— 1 —

The surgery itself. There were no complications other than me having to have four incisions instead of three. (We’re talking incisions that are maybe an inch long, so this is minor.) They had to fix some adhesions, and my uterus apparently developed a new blood supply in the last 10 years, but it had to come out anyway so that wasn’t a big deal. My surgeon was happy with the outcome.

— 2 —

Anesthesia. Upon finding out that I was electing to stay overnight, my anesthesiologist offered to put in a morphine block that would keep me pain-free for the first day but would make me a little bit itchy. I took him up on it, and was more than a “little bit” itchy. I wanted to sleep in a vat of Benadryl gel because it was so bad. God bless Lindsay, my night nurse, because she was coming up with new and creative ways to help me deal with this. Still, my anesthesiologist was fabulous and had a fabulous bedside manner.

— 3 —

Why I love my church. A woman from my church asked what she could do to help, and I asked if she could sit with me while I was waiting for surgery because Mom was supposed to be getting Daniel off to school at that point. Even when my surgery got moved 2 1/2 hours later, she offered to stay with me and another woman joined her. They kept my mom and me calm, prayed with me, anointed me with anointing oil, and made small talk to keep me relaxed. What they didn’t know was how terrified I was that I wasn’t going to wake up from surgery… because we’ve had that happen in my family in the last five years, and part of that was because all of Daniel’s stuff depends on me. They’ve checked in with me every day since, either in person or by text, and one of them has even helped me negotiate all the pain conversations with my surgeon’s nurses.

Another woman (who sings alto in the choir with me) brought over a gallon of chicken soup and some Asian pears today. The soup is helping to settle my stomach.

My priest checked on me intermittently on Tuesday, and he finally got me awake on Wednesday morning, so I got more anointing oil on me (which is the best smell in the world) and the laying on of hands for prayer.

— 4 —

The pain. The morphine wore off around 4 p.m. yesterday, and my mom arrived home with my Toradol and Tramadol at that point. Toradol works well with the pain. Tramadol made me feel dippy, but it did nothing to help the pain. This culminated in me having a screaming panic attack at 2 a.m. because I was vomiting from the leftover anesthesia in my system (because I removed the Scopolamine patch from behind my ear too early) and having pain that was a 6 or 7 out of 10 on the pain scale. (God bless my parents because I was inconsolable for a while.) I didn’t know that I could have added acetaminophen to the Tramadol, so it was 8 hours of misery. I’ve been meticulous as all get out about taking my Toradol at EXACTLY six-hour increments today. My surgeon’s nurses and I had a conversation over the messaging system their office uses about my pain, and I have permission to take acetaminophen with my Toradol along with some Ativan for anxiety if I need it.

— 5 —

My nurses. My nurses at my local hospital were amazing. My pre-op team got my IV in painlessly. (They do a small injection of lidocaine first, which helps a lot.) They also made sure I was comfortable and fetched me a lot of cranberry juice and ice chips on Tuesday and Wednesday because it was the only thing I really wanted that I was allowed to have (I was on liquids on Tuesday night).

— 6 —

My mom. Mom has taken over all of Daniel’s care this week, and she has completely rocked it. She learned all of my jobs last week, and I went into surgery breathing a little easier knowing that she could take care of Daniel. Since I’ve been home, I’ve tweaked things a bit and done a couple of things that she hadn’t learned how to do by feel yet, but she has enforced me resting… which is important because I have to be doing something.

— 7 —

My surgeon. He is a very formal Ukrainian gentleman, but his bedside manner was excellent. He did all of my care on Wednesday morning including removing the catheter and packing that I had in me. (It was uncomfortable, but that couldn’t be helped.) As he was talking to me both before surgery and after, he was holding my hand, which was good in keeping calm when I was either scared or really uncomfortable.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: TGIAF Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

The dangers of negativity. Apparently, I’m not the only one who finds perpetually negative people to be a cancer?

To a degree, being happy is a choice. I don’t believe depression can magically be cured by happy thoughts, but you can choose to find happiness in really difficult circumstances.

— 2 —

An interesting protest. Some Catholic protesters in the Russell Senate Building formed a cross with their bodies while protesting the draconian immigration situation. A friend found some other pictures of the protesters being arrested which included some Dominican nuns.

— 3 —

OCD princess learns about the BUJO lifestyle. I want to start a bullet journal, but I’m having a heck of a time figuring out how to start and what to do because I’m OCD as all get out. So… I’m reading a book on it.

— 4 —

NFP Week, yo! It’s NFP Week, so I’m betting there will be a boatload of posts on how WONDERFUL it is (not!). Here’s the first one posted.

By the way, my Fitbit app has accurately predicted my period’s start date two months in a row. Woo.

— 5 —

Camp NaNoWriMo update. I abandoned my novel at 30,000 words after it stalled out because I had letters to write. No regrets. None at all.

— 6 —

Just why… A friend of mine got these for her kids. She regrets it. Apparently, the envelope stank to high heaven. Just.. why do these things exist in the first place?!?!?!?

— 7 —

Minion update. Baby Blackpaw had his yearly vet visit on Tuesday. He was quiet in the car with the exception of giving me his order at Starbucks. (No, I did not buy him coffee. He steals mine.) He purred like a jet engine for his vet tech and vet until they trimmed his claws, at which point he started growling and hissing and meowing. He was doing all of this while trying to snort up the Cheez Whiz they put on the mat to distract him, so it sounded like he was saying “omnomnomnom!”

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: June 24, 2019

For Today… June 24, 2019

Simple Woman's Daybook

Looking out my window… sunny and in the high 60’s.

I am thinking… about Homer, my parents’ cat who we had to let go a year ago today.

I am thankful… for my nephew Braden’s first birthday today. I saw the little beast yesterday and got smiles. I am a very happy Auntie Jen!

One of my favorite things… quiet. I rarely get it with Daniel out of school for the summer (with the exception of ESY).

I am wearing… charcoal shirt and jeans capris.

I am creating… plot points for my Camp NaNoWriMo piece.

I am reading… Inspired by Rachel Held Evans. I’m finding it hard to read since Rachel died, because I don’t want to be done with her writing.

I am hoping… there’s something fun for me in the mailbox. **UPDATE** It was just a yarn catalog, my car insurance bill, and my AAA magazine.

In my kitchen… whatever is in the freezer.

In the school room… Daniel is out for the next two weeks until ESY starts.

Post Script… the Classic Editor plugin I use to keep the editor that existed on WordPress before they rolled out “Gutenberg”.

Shared Quote… “It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people.” – Neil Gaiman, Good Omens

A moment from my day…

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

7 Quick Takes: Dispatches from Snowmaggedon Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Understatement of the year. So, it’s been kinda snowy here…

Winter finally came.

— 2 —

Super Bowl Sunday. It started snowing the morning of Super Bowl Sunday and didn’t stop until the next day. I blame Tom Brady. (Everything is his fault.)

— 3 —

Snow days. It was forecasted to be a very warm and dry winter (as El Nino is up here), so everybody understocked all the ice melt stuff. As a result, none of the towns and cities were prepared to deal with all the snow and street clearing that needed to happen. Monday following the Super Bowl was a snow day for both Daniel and me. Tuesday brought a 2-hour delay for the kid and another snow day for me because the college was having so much of a problem clearing the parking lots and walkways.

— 4 —

Freezing things off. A large problem is that it was so cold so that instead of melting away as it usually does here, it stayed around. My dad was shoveling like heck and trying to source some ice melt or something to keep the driveway and steps clear. Unfortunately, there was almost none to be found in western Washington, and Amazon wasn’t going to be able to deliver until Monday. Thankfully, my uncle had 100lbs of it sitting at my grandma’s house because she hadn’t wanted it used on her driveway.

— 5 —

Snow panther. Minion thought watching the snow was AWESOME and wanted to go play in it. He would try to sneak out at every opportunity. I finally put him in a snowbank during one of his trips out and covered him with snow, thinking that he might get cold and not want to go out again. Instead, the little demon thought it was the BEST DAY EVER and has continued to do it since.

Cats!

— 6 —

More snow days. It started snowing again this Monday, and campus closed early. We got another two inches on top of the six that we already had. They announced a snow day for Daniel on Monday night and called me at 5:30 am on Tuesday to let me know that the college would be closed. I blame the L.A. Rams.

— 7 —

Melting. It’s been above freezing for a couple days, and all our snow on Monday night was wet so much of it is melted now. It meant that Tuesday and Wednesday were like walking and driving through a gigantic Slurpee. I blame the Dodgers.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: CPAP FAQ, Ranting at the School Nurse, and Other Merriment

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Ranting at the school nurse. Lest this be added to the “reasons not to homeschool send your kids to public school EVER” list by my current troll reader, I enjoy a really good relationship with Daniel’s school overall, and this problem wouldn’t exist if the school district hadn’t cut the funding for school nurses to the point that they are covering 3 schools on average. (Teachers at this school nurse’s other campuses and at Daniel’s elementary school has explained that this individual is “special.”)

School Nurse,

For some odd reason, you couldn’t be bothered to actually get my young prince’s individual health plan written/signed in SEPTEMBER, so I now have to remind you again that the only information you need on his G-tube is DON’T [EXPLETIVE] TOUCH IT, per the request of the General Surgery nurses at Seattle Children’s Hospital because they don’t want the integrity of the stoma compromised. That sucker is being held in place by a water-filled balloon UNDER HIS SKIN, and it is not coming out without that bubble being drained or someone pulling pretty darn hard on it with needle-nosed pliers.

If it does for some odd reason fall out, CALL ME DIRECTLY ON MY CELL PHONE AT 867-5309 (not at the first random number you see) as my sweet babu will probably be in a buttload of pain (again, that thing is NOT falling out on its own) and there will probably be damage to the stoma that requires an ER visit to Seattle Children’s. If you can’t reach me, call my parents (whose numbers you have) and they will get in touch with me PDQ. Again, DON’T [EXPLETIVE] TOUCH MY CHILD’S G-TUBE OR YOU WILL BE IN DEEP FECES.

Snuggles,
jen

— 2 —

The back storyregarding the above take. Dumb@$$ School Nurse (“DSN” for short) decided to call the first number their eyes came upon, and it was my parents’ landline. (I live with them, so it’s the back-up number. However, EVERY piece of school paperwork contains the words “call Jen on her cell phone at 867-5309“, and DSN seems to be the only person who has ever ignored that.) Thankfully, I happened to be home, but DSN managed to get my dad first… who was not amused by some random person calling and asking seemingly personal information about my kid. DSN finally explained WHY he was calling, and Dad called me to the phone.

When I picked it up, DSN apologized for “upsetting my husband”.

I rolled my eyes and told him, in a voice dripping with saccharine, that the gruff gentleman who answered the phone was my FATHER, and that he was not amused to get a call from a strange person asking seemingly personal information about his grandson. When I got off the phone (after giving him a bunch of information that he ALREADY HAS in various documents and emails), I told Dad that DSN thought he was my husband. Thankfully, Dad found some humor in THAT, even if I was spitting fire at DSN’s idiocy.

/stomps off to fix the student health plan for my critter AGAIN

— 3 —

CPAP Take #1. Kelly (our hostess with the mostest) asked to see a selfie of me with the CPAP mask on, and I’m obliging because I live to make Kelly happy. 😀

CPAP selfie!

— 4 —

CPAP Take #2. Kelly asked to see my mask, so here it is along with the strapping on it that holds it to my face. (The white things in the bottom corners are the things that fasten the mask to the strapping, and they attach to the mask magnetically.) My nose rests on the top of the mask on top of a hole that allows me to breathe through it. Otherwise, I breathe through my mouth. I opted for the full-face mask instead of the nasal pillows (similar to a nasal cannula but with a fatter base) because I couldn’t breathe well with them in. (They force air into your nose, which works well if you’re a nose breather… which I am not.)

Not shown in the second picture (because I’m dangling the mask from) it is the clear tubing that feeds the hot air into the mask, so I took the third picture to show the mask tubing and how everything is connected. The whitish stuff attached to the mask is rubbery and flexible tubing, and it goes on top of my head. The greyish tubing is a little firmer and what brings the heated moist air pressure into the mask framework. Most masks have the greying tubing coming out of the front. Mine comes out of the tubing on the top of my head.(I apologize for the quality of the pics — I’m taking them on my webcam in not-great light because it’s late at night.) I sleep on my side usually with the greyish tubing trailing behind me. If I’m on my back, it comes out the top of the rubbery thing and trails off my pillow and to my right where my machine is.

CPAP Mask
CPAP Strapping
CPAP Mask Framework

— 5 —

CPAP Take #3. Kelly asked about my machine, so here are some pictures of it. (Our email conversations are FUN! We also both believe in educating people on scary health issues, so I’m happy to answer questions.) Mine is made by ResMed and adjusts the pressure going into my mask automatically. It also has a modem in it which sends data to a website that my doctor, my home health person, and probably the Illuminati can see. The rule is that I have to be using my CPAP for at least 4 hours a day in order for insurance to continue to pay for it (it’s usually 8 hours for me and up to 12 if I go back to sleep once Daniel is off to school).

Here are the front and back. (I blacked out any personally-identifying information.) The clear thing at the right side is a removable reservoir where I put distilled water to make the air moist. I clean it out and refill it every 2-3 days. The tubing that brings the air to my mask attaches in the back.

The front of the machine.
The back of the machine.

— 6 —

CPAP Take #4. Kelly asked what it feels like to have it on. It was a little weird at first, and I’m really glad they had me try out face masks in the hospital before they attached all the wires to me during my alien abduction sleep study so that I would know which one felt most comfortable for me. When I put it on, I breathe into it to start it (provided it’s plugged in) and it feels warm and moist around my face. It’s been good because using it forces me to breathe deeply, and that deep breathing helps me get sleepy quicker. I tend to sleep better and deeper, which helps with the daytime sleepiness.

It doesn’t make an annoying sound — it’s designed to be white noise. And yes, my little ball of black fury has investigated it and rolled his panther cub eyes because Mama bats him back from it every time he tries to eat the tubing. #housepantherproblems #meanmama #mustbiteallthethings

— 7 —

The Superb Owl. (Yes, that spelling was intentional.) I honestly don’t know who to root for this weekend. I can’t root for the Lambs Rams because they’re from LA, and I hate on southern California teams as a moral rule. I can’t root for the Patriots because I take great joy in seeing Tom Brady lose. (The 49’ers of the 1980’s and early 1990’s are the best football team in history, y’all. C/S.)

I’ll probably just go on SuperBowl.Com and watch the commercials or something. I mean, isn’t the Superb Owl is just fabulous commercials with annoying interludes of football and obnoxious Halftime entertainment? #stateyourunpopularopinion

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.