Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year!

Just a quick note to say Happy New Year to all my vast number of followers! *smile* I have to work the Eve and the Day itself, but then have a few days off. Will hopefully be back with something interesting by then. Take care everyone! A little fun isn't worth an extended stay in the hospital!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Adam Lambert - Better Than I Know Myself (Audio)

Thought I'd share this new song from Adam Lambert. I think this is supposed to be the first single from his new album that releases in March 2012. Yes, I like music that isn't necessarily in accordance with my age!

Christmas Memories

DH and I did our weekly shopping at Wally World yesterday. As we were wandering through the 'seasonal items'/'toilet paper' aisle (weird combo, I know), I noticed that there sure is a lot of 'stuff' out there for parents to put in their kids stockings. There was almost as much candy as at Easter or Halloween! Then there were the little games, toys, and other treats for the little monsters. And here I thought it was just the excitement of tearing into paper and boxes that made kids hyper on Christmas. No, it's all the junk they find in their stockings!

At the risk of turning into one of those old people that are continually reminiscing about how things were when they were young, I thought I'd share a bit about how things were when I was young! Keep in mind that it was the late 60's or early 70's that comprise most of my childhood memories. But maybe that will be entertaining for some of you younger whippersnappers. (where are my dentures, anyway?)

My parents formative years were also the depression years. My dad's family lived in rural Arkansas, and he was (I think) the oldest boy of a total of 9 children. So their family didn't have a whole lot of money to begin with. You can imagine, then, that I grew up under folks who didn't have much when they were children, and so weren't the type to squander money or spoil their children!

In our Christmas stocking each year, we'd find an orange, maybe an apple, some nuts, and maybe a candy cane. Once I think I remember receiving some McDonald's gift certificates, which were amazing. I don't remember ever going to McDonald's or other fast food places as a child. It seems like there must have been other stuff in our stockings, but for the life of me, I can't remember what. Socks, maybe?
I guess you would describe my parents as people who gave gifts of things you needed; not necessarily things you wanted. This is not to say that we didn't get some fun things, but our Christmases were not about toys or the newest fads that came along.

One thing we ALWAYS got for Christmas was a new pair of pajamas, and usually a new pair of slippers as well. There were things like underwear, a sweater, and maybe a dress for us girls. We did get some games: Tinker Toys, Yahtzee, Monopoly, and Life to name a few. (The Tinker Toys were actually made of wood back then, and Monopoly had metal game pieces) As I got older, books were always towards the top of my Christmas list. I remember we were always warned that just because we put it on our list didn't mean we were going to get it! Mom was always VERY practical! Someone in my family, though, has a picture of my sister and I in front of a Christmas tree. One of us is holding a gun and another a stuffed skunk, if I remember right. I still find it hard to believe that one of us (had to have been one of my brothers) had been given a gun of some sort. Mom was very non-violent and was very much the type to say things about not pointing things at other people because "you could put someone's eye out"!

Christmas was a pretty exciting holiday; probably for all kids. Once, I must have been told by my parents that we weren't to get up too early; I remember going into my brother's room, waking one of them up and asking if it was time to go downstairs yet! We used to go to my grandparent's house to pick them up for church every Sunday. I remember one year I was sure I saw reindeer prints on their roof. They were probably more likely just bird prints, but I was SURE that this proved Santa Claus was real and had been to their house!

As we grow older Christmas changes, of course. DH put up our Christmas tree this year for the first time since we moved here six years ago. Don't know why we haven't bothered till now. Probably because I often have to work Christmas, and we don't make a big deal about gifts. It's kind of hard to buy a surprise gift for DH when he looks at the bank account on line every day, you know? We'll be going to my inlaws house this Christmas. They always put on a spread of waaay to much food for just the four of us! But then we get leftovers, too...bwahahaha!

In any case, I hope you've enjoyed my little entry about my Christmas memories. Tell me some of yours!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Oh, Those High School Days!

A couple of posts ago, I mentioned high school in passing so I thought I'd go back to that and tell you what my high school was like. It was probably a fairly unique experience, so maybe you'll get a laugh out of it.

I went to a very small Catholic high school. My graduating class was all of 72 (yes, seventy-two) students. At the time I went there, it was nearing the bottom of a long slide into death...I bet the whole school (7th thru 12th grades) didn't have more than 300 students. The school actually IS still alive and churning out grads, but only because it was taken over by a larger, obviously more successful organization.

The school was so small that not only did the teachers and principal know everyone by name, they also knew your family history, older brothers and sisters, younger brothers and sisters, pets, and sins you brought up in confession. (okay, I'm joking about that; they really didn't know your pets.)

You know how every class/school has cliques? Jocks, stoners, band geeks, brainiacs, etc? We didn't have so many cliques, mainly because we were too small to have so many things to do. We did have sports teams (football & basketball; there may have been track and softball.) Obviously I didn't belong to the "jock" group! Back in the day there was no money for most extra-curricular activities, so we didn't have a music department, let alone a band. (No band geeks or glee kids) There was no drama department. (When my older brother and sister went there, there was I think one play per year. By the time I got there, even that much had petered out) I think we actually did have a couple of stoners, although the worst drugs we knew of back then were beer and marijuana. Maybe that's just me; obviously I wasn't a stoner, either!

Even the teachers were characters. Seeing as it was a catholic school, there were a few catholic nuns still teaching at that time. Biology was taught by Sr. Pius, who was about as round as she was tall. Math classes were taught by Sr Mercia, who would say a prayer before each class. There was also a man (Mr. Nolan) who taught history (I think) who was famous at our house because he was the first person (as far as we knew) to ever predict that California was going to fall into the ocean. (Obviously THAT prediction hasn't come to pass yet!)

You know, looking back my school wasn't very exciting at all. Compared to the city's public high school that looked like a maximum security prison, our school was pretty tame! We got a pretty good education, didn't learn a lot of bad habits, and a good number of us went on to college. I still can't believe that it's been 30+ years since I graduated. In many ways, I'd hate to go back to that age again, but in others it would be nice to get to redo things that I screwed up the first time!

I hope this hasn't been too boring for you. This entry didn't turn out to be quite as entertaining as I thought it would! Oh well, I'll keep trying! I may never be an author after all since I couldn't even make high school more fun!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Hi All

No real post today. Just wanted to let everyone know (all 4 of you, lol) that I've survived another week of work. I think I slept 24 hours out of 36 this time. DH doesn't understand how I can sleep so much, but I think I'm making up for all the sleep I don't get on the days when I work. I drive an hour each way to and from work, then it takes me a couple of hours to wind down enough to sleep when I get home. And that's even with the help of Benadryl to get to sleep in the first place! So if I'm lucky, I get to sleep by 11 am, then have to get up again at 4pm in order to have time to bathe and eat something before I leave the house again at 5:15pm. Have you ever tried to eat dinner within an hour of waking up? Not easy for me!

Anyway, enough whining for now. I'll try to come up with some kind of interesting, amusing, or otherwise readable post for tomorrow!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Can Anybody Help Me?

Okay, yes, I one can help me. Old joke, but somebody was going to say it, so I thought I'd say it first. So there! *sticking my tongue out at you*

I've been doing this blogging thing for a few months now, and I've looked at quite a few blogs done by other people. One thing I've noticed is that nearly all of them look a lot more professional than mine! This could be related to a number of different things. First of all, I'm not trying to sell or promote anything. I'm not trying to make money off this blog, so I don't really have to impress or appear businesslike. Another reason is that I'm old. I don't like to admit that to just anyone, you know! When I was in high school, technology meant using an electric typewriter. I could do another whole post on my high school but, I digress. We didn't have classes in web design, html, dos, or any of that other 'techie' type stuff. Another problem is that I'm a nurse. As my DH has come to find since he started working in a hospital, medical/nursing type folks are generally NOT computer/electronically savvy people. Need someone to stop some bleeding or give an enema, I'm your guy (or girl. whatever). Need someone to hopelessly mess up a computer program; just call a nurse or doctor over the age of 30.

When I do something on the computer, I want it to be simple, one or two steps, and DONE. I don't know anything about writing code. Cutting and pasting is about the extent of my computer knowledge. (Unless you need something purchased. I CAN do that really well!) The point that I'm circling around (and around, and around) is that I need HELP!! I've seen several doohickeys (isn't that a techie word?) on several blogs...I think they're called 'badges'. Like a little emblem, right? And underneath this nifty little badge is a line that says something like "grab a badge" or "get a follow button" or similar. My question is HOW do I do this?? Is it like cut and paste, or different? How do I get it from another place to here, and then when I do, how do I tell it where to go on my screen (template?) and stay there? I feel like I'm trying to herd cats. sheesh.

Oh, you young folks are so lucky...sigh...(Lord, don't let me start talking about how I walked 5 miles to school in the winter...) ahem...anyway...
I know, I should just ask my lovely technically GENIUS DH to do some of this stuff for me, but I'd like to know how to do it myself, you know? If I can be responsible for someone's LIFE at work, I ought to be able to do more than buy things and email people! I've mastered Facebook and Twitter (unless all those tweets have been going to siberia...hmmm....)

After this post, there will probably be absolutely no question whatsoever that I am, undoubtedly, an old, straight, white woman. No one else under the age of 40 would be having these problems, right? LMAO. The reason I say that is because recently on blogs, web sites, and twitter there has been some controversy recently about whether or not people are being honest about who they are. This is actually kind of funny, because that's been happening since the beginning of the computer age! Hello!?! Remember chat rooms, where you could be anyone, anywhere, or be a completely different person? So now we know I am absolutely who I say I am. As much as I might like to be, I'm NOT a 25 year old Victoria's Secret model. I'm a going-on-fifty year old woman who lives in her pajamas (except when I play a nurse at work), who is hopelessly computer-stupid when it comes to real life. But I DO know how to work a mean Kindle!

Oh, and I did figure out how to put a cow mooing as my phone's ring tone last week!

New Definition of Homophobia

As a public service, I'm providing this new, improved, definition of homophobia. I give authorship to the tweeter @coyotetoo, and was then re-tweeted by author Chris Owen (@chris_owen).

Homophobia: The fear that gay men will treat you the way you treat women.

Isn't that just SO accurate?? 'Nuff said.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Can Teddy Bears Fly?

I ran across this video on you tube after getting seeing a forwarded tweet. Evidently, this has become popular with some of the NHL teams in order to donate the bears to charity.

Bear (bad pun, I know) with the first 15-20 seconds of video. The good stuff comes after that!

Monday, December 5, 2011

David Garrett - Child`s Anthem - London 01.12.11

Hey, I figured out how to do it! Can you believe it? LOL

Let's Get This Party Started!

DH is going off to SanFran today to some computer class which lasts all week, thus the title above! *Just kidding, dear!*

But seriously, now it's all up to me to remember to feed the dog (and walk it), pick up the mail, and all those other chores that DH has spoiled me into not having to do. And I REALLY appreciate it!!

To get today off to a great start, said dog just about knocked me over in the hall this morning, he was so excited to see me(or, maybe it was just the fact that he was happy he wasn't alone. *hmm*). Saturday, DH left early in he morning to take his mom to an appointment. DOG, (now to be known as GD, goofy dog) whined and cried at the door for at least an HOUR, before going outside to bark at the front gate. Needless to say, he was upset that DH wasn't spending their special weekend time together! I had to finally get out of bed to drag GD back inside the house before he annoyed the entire neighborhood! (You know, GD could also stand for G*D D**M dog, couldn't it?) GD actually is a nice dog, considering he's a pit bull. Not vicious, just big and slobbery. Oh, and he farts, too.

I talked DH into attending a concert with me in January! I was SHOCKED! This is not to say that we're a couple of sticks-in-the-mud, but we're not exactly social. For instance, we've lived in this house for going on six years, and we've never had anyone over for dinner! But anyway, we'll be going to see a performer named David Garrett. Go check him out on You Tube! (If I knew more about this blogging stuff, I'd post a video myself. Anyone out there that knows how to do this....HELP!)
He's a gentleman that is trained in classical violin, but manages to makeover classical pieces into rock, and plays rock music with a full orchestra! All while wearing long hair, jeans, and army boots. Assuming I can get someone at work to trade shifts with me, we'll be doing an actual date night with dinner and a show included! I'll try to remember to post again in January about the date night AND the show to let you know how it was.

Hmmm, #FunFactAboutMe is trending on twitter...My favorite ice cream in the world is Chocolate Caramel Crunch from Baskin Robbins! Which, I haven't had in years, because there aren't any BRs around here! *she sobs*

What can you tell me about you??

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Hi, :) I'm Jonah

Click the title above or the link below to view a video that was tweeted to me by several different people in the last few days. Please watch it and remember that people with smiling faces are not always happy.

The Sensual World of Stephani Hecht: Hi, :) I'm Jonah:

Saturday, December 3, 2011

European Vacation

Okay, now to the post I was planning on before I got sidetracked by that lovely scientific study I referenced below.....

In the summer of 2009 I took a river cruise from Amsterdam to Vienna. I'm not getting paid anything to say this (obviously) but I took the cruise through a company called Grand Circle Travel. They do a number of European trips of all kinds, but I liked the idea of a cruise because most everything is included. I should mention that this caters mainly to the 'over 50' crowd, (which I'm NOT yet) but it was still a lot of fun. Some of those older folks can really party! LOL, just kidding!

I took this picture somewhere in Germany (I really need to make notes on the pictures as I'm taking them). You'll notice there is a hand on the right hand side of the picture. Here's the situation in it's entirety:

I'm pretty sure that's Dad's hand in the first picture, but it was such a cute setting, I couldn't help but take the pictures. In my experience, I've always found that ducks, geese, chickens, and birds in general are pretty aggressive, so I was surprised to see these get so close. But I guess food in the hand....
Yes, that was a really bad joke!

What the F**k??

As I muddle my way through learning how to do this blogging stuff, I attempt another experiment in this post.

If you click on the title above, you will jump to a story about a supposed 'study' in Saudi Arabia that links women drivers with prostitution, pornography, homosexuality, and divorce. Oh, and the increasing loss of virgins in that country.

As I said, "WHAT THE F**K???

Assuming that this story is not a joke, the only conclusion a person can come to after reading this is that a large number of people in Saudi Arabia are amazingly ignorant. But perhaps it is a case of the power of religion that has (or is) attempting to subvert the minds of its believers.

I don't want to get into any deep philosophical or political discussions here, mainly because the last thing I am is well acquainted with either philosophy or politics. I can't help but think I'm glad I don't live in Saudi or in some other country in which religion has a strangle hold over the citizens. The US isn't perfect by any means, but at least we're not being told ridiculous sh*t like this!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Home Again

I'm back home again today after the last 5 or 6 days spent at the old homestead. It was great to see everyone, but in a way it sucked because of the reason. (my mom died unexpectedly).

Anyway, after getting off to a lousy start, the trip ended pretty uneventfully. I was to leave here Friday midday, but 1st flight was canceled due to high winds. Plus, there was a wildfire in the area, leading to a large amount of smoke in the air. Then I was rescheduled to leave late afternoon, which would have gotten me into Detroit at 6am Saturday morning. That flight was then also canceled, which led to me finally getting to Detroit 24 hours after originally planned. (Sorry if I'm repeating myself; I can't remember if I posted this before or not! Old age :+( )

I haven't had the best of luck when it comes to air travel in the last few years. It seems that whenever I go somewhere, I get delayed, miss connections, get rescheduled, or end up having to spend many hours somewhere I don't want to be. Surprisingly enough, today's flights actually went off as planned! I even had enough time to have a Cinnabon while in the Salt Lake airport! (Cinnamon rolls are just about my ULTIMATE indulgence food!)

For anyone who cares, it seems that Black Friday is a good day to travel by air. The airports were not any more crowded than a typical day (in my experience). I would NOT want to be traveling on Sunday, however. I suspect that day will be the definition of crazy!

As a good example of my bad luck while traveling, about 10 or 12 years ago, I flew to Detroit between Christmas and New Years to visit family. (I know, what was I thinking?) Over New Years Eve and New Years Day, pretty much all of the upper midwest had a huge snowstorm, which dumped at least a foot or two of snow everywhere. If I remember right, I was supposed to leave Detroit mid-morning of Jan 2 (Sat). It should have been a sign that it was not going to turn out well when it took well over an hour to get to the airport. This was before 9/11 when people were still able to see you off at the gate; mom and dad sat there waiting with me through flight delays, gate changes, plane changes, crew delays, etc, etc, etc. Finally about 3 or 4 pm, I sent them home hoping that they at least would be able to get home before it was too late to see where they were driving.

About this time, flights were beginning to stack up because gates were full and there were no places for incoming planes to park. After multiple delays, we were eventually herded onto a plane and told we'd be leaving 'momentarily'. Three hours later we were finally allowed off the plane and told we would need to be ready to re-board immediately when the flight was ready to depart. Needless to say, it never did depart and my night was spent (along with many thousands of others) on the cement floors of Detroit Metro Airport!

This was not a good way to see man's humanity to man! All of the airline personnel wanted to get home to their own families, so eventually the airport emptied of all 'official' people. And, gee, not too many of them showed up for work the next day! There was perhaps one gate agent for every 10 or 15 gates, with thousands of upset people trying to get to wherever they called home. This was now a Sunday, and another 12 or 15 hours went by with not a single plane leaving the ground. Eventually I gave up and begged mom and dad to come pick me up get me away from the torture chamber that the airport had become. Did you know that when an airport is occupied by tens of thousands of people the restaurants run out of food? Most baggage checked had already been loaded onto planes, and many people with children were left without diapers, formula, and other vital items. Not to mention the fact that a few more thousand people were still in the planes that were stranded out on the runways with no way to get to the terminal itself!

To make a long story short, I finally left Detroit the following Wednesday. Thanks to some anonymous airline staffer, I was upgraded to first class (my first and only time) and thoroughly enjoyed my flight to Portland Oregon amid the quiet clink of china and the screaming baby-less seats that are actually big enough to be comfortable in!

Thus is the story of the FIRST, THE ORIGINAL, Runway Sunday! An experience that made me swear to never again visit Detroit during the winter! It may not QUITE be winter yet, but perhaps my jinx of Detroit and Winter has finally been broken.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Good Eats!

My dad, brother, sister-in-law and I went out to lunch today to one of my brother's favorite places, Pete's Coney Island. I don't know if the 'Coney Island' is something native to the east coast or not, but we don't have them in Nevada that I'm aware of. Basically a Coney is a chili dog with mustard and onions. If I remember right, there's a couple of Coney Island restaurants in Detroit that have a big rivalry. One dresses their dogs differently than the other does. In any case, this started me thinking about some regional food differences.

For about 12 years I lived in Grand Rapids, which is in western Michigan. A common food in a Mexican restaurant there is what they call a 'wet burrito'. This is a typical burrito covered with something like enchilada sauce or gravy. (Yeah, gravy doesn't sound right, does it?) Other places I've lived, they've looked at me like I'm crazy when I mention a 'wet burrito'.

I'm sure everyone knows this, but many ethnic foods we have in the US are very different than what people actually eat in the original countries. I certainly found that out when I went to China in 2008. I didn't see a single thing that looked like chow mein or lo mein! Pizza in Italy isn't much like pizza in the US, either. Mainly because they use fewer, but fresher, ingredients than we do.

I went to Costa Rica earlier this year, and found that I really enjoyed their food. I don't know if there is a typical 'tourist menu, but every meal had black beans (including breakfast) some kind of shredded lettuce, and mainly chicken for the meat (although not a whole lot. I think the beans are their primary source of protein and carbohydrate) The fruit there is amazing. Perfectly ripe pineapple, bananas, strawberries, cantalope, and another I can't remember the name of. (Another sign of my age. *sigh*)

I've always wanted to go to India, but the food is a major concern of mine. I've never been able to tolerate spicy foods, and I think Indian foods tends to be on the spicy side. I could be wrong, though, because I've never eaten it! One of these times I'll have to get brave and try an Indian restaurant!

I think I got a little off course with this post, but that's typical for me. This gives you a little bit of an idea about how my mind works! I definitely have some 'flight of ideas' going on!

I hope everyone has a good Thanksgiving! I'll be with the relatives trying to survive the chaos! *teasing*

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


I haven't posted lately due to a death in the family. For those of you reading this who may not be family members, my mom died unexpectedly this past friday. Although it was a terrible reason to be together, all of my family came together for the first time in more than a year.Some families get together much more often, but due to where we all live, we're almost never together in one place at one time. One person or another is absent for one reason or another. Distance, work, family obligations, etc. But this time all the brothers, sisters, grandchildren and great grandchildren were together in one house. We had family from as far away as Seattle, myself from Nevada, an aunt and uncle from Houston, and multiple family members from Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, and Wisconsin.

Last night, 25+ members of our family (blood related or informally adopted) went out to eat at a local restaurant together. For a small place, they were amazingly organized and the food was great!

In any case, it was nice to spend time with family, remembering things from the past, things that were said and done by Mom. In most of my memories, my mother was pretty strict and serious. It was interesting to hear other people remember times with her. Many of them had different experiences with her that often showed different sides to her than what I knew. For a lot of my life, especially those lovely teenage years, it seemed like my mom and I were constantly butting up one another. Now, of course, I've gotten old enough to realize how much of what she said or did was really for my own good. Hopefully, after all the screw-ups I've had in my life, my mother did end up feeling like I was finally getting my act together. It's about time, now that I'm almost 50, right? *sigh*

At least I had been to visit in August, so I have some recent, good memories. Due to the suddenness of her death, I wasn't able to see her before she passed. Thanks to my sisters and their organization, though, I have some great old photos of my mom and dad.

For the rest of you out there, go visit your families! You never know when your visit might be the last time you see them.

And, once again, forgive any typos. I'm typing on my little notepad again!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Lack of Inspiration

I got an unplanned night off from work, so I've been sitting here thinking about what kind of post to do. I considered talking about the Joe Paterno mess in Pennsylvania, and decided that it didn't even deserve commenting on. Mainly because I suspect I haven't seen all the news reports, but residents of an institution of higher learning rioting because JP got fired amongst the sexual abuse scandal among his coaching staff? Come on people! Isn't the fact that children were victimized for years mean more than football team? Ok, well I guess I commented on that, didn't I? I guess you know what my feelings are. LOL

I also considered commenting on the furor that is being raised among authors and fans of a certain genre of books. It seems that this author had misrepresented his/her sex, which in and of itself, doesn't sound bad, does it? A lot of authors use pen names, right? It turns out that this author supposedly has made derogatory and supposedly 'bullying' type comments over the years to other authors. The author claimed to have had experiences and relationships over the years that were determined to have been false based on who he/she really is instead of who she claimed to be. That's clear as mud, isn't it? *grins* My taste in books is rather different from most, and I figured this whole hoo-haa wouldn't be of any interest to you anyway! Once again, I managed to comment on something I wasn't going to comment on. *sigh*

I also considered a more holiday-related post, but I think I'll save that until closer to the holidays. For lack of any further inspiration, I'll post a few more photos from my China trip in 2008. This first photo is of a peacock. I'm not sure if it's actually albino, or a breed that is just white, but I'd never seen any white peacocks before. It's pretty cool, isn't it?

This next picture was taken at the Emperor's Summer Palace in Beijing. This, of course, is only a small portion of the palace and grounds, but it shows some of their architecture and how beautiful it was there. Evidently the Empress and her ladies would go to the Summer Palace during hot weather to escape the confines of The Forbidden City. Back then, of course, the Summer Palace was quite a ways away from and outside of Beijing. Now, it's within the city itself.

Last, but not least, is a photo taken at a tea plantation. I'm not a tea drinker, but it was interesting to see how tea is grown and processed. I guess it never occurred to me to think about how it 'became' tea. As you can see, it's beautiful countryside, and a lot of tea can be grown in hilly areas, so it's a big crop.

On that note, I'll close for now and try to come up with something more interesting for my next post. It's becoming clear to me that my life really isn't very interesting! If you have any suggestions (all 6 of you followers or whoever is lurking around out there) let me know!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Good Book

No, this post isn't about THE good book, it's about A good book. Actually a series of 3 books by Thomas Sherry. The first book is called Deep Winter. The series is about a family and their friends living in Spokane, WA. It's one of those "end of the world" type books; not post-apocalyptic really, just how people survive after a major disaster(s).

The original disaster in the book is a volcanic eruption of Mt Rainier, followed by a very large earthquake (8+ on the richter scale). Eventually, the Spokane area (and the entire US)is involved in a collapse of the US financial system, a world-wide flu pandemic (twice), a nuclear war, secession of most of the eastern US, and a Civil War. I'm sure all that sounds crazy, but somehow the author manages to make all of this seem possible.

The author goes into a great amount of detail; sometimes more than really necessary, but I suppose different things are interesting to different people. For instance, when rebuilding their house all kinds of detail is given regarding supplies, sizes of shingles, nails, etc, etc, etc. Someone who is really interested in building might be into all that detail, but it all kind of went over my head.

Anyway, it is just a very interesting series of books, because so many of the things in the books COULD actually happen. It gives you a lot to think about in regards to the financial system, preparing for disasters of one kind or another, and what you might need in the future. The books are also a little scary because these things COULD happen, and 99% of the world would be very unprepared. I know we would be! Just one thing like the power grid failing can cause a cascade of events that would change the world completely!

I read a LOT of different kinds of books. A lot of romance, I will admit. But I've also been reading a lot of zombie and post-apocalyptic stories lately as well. Laugh if you'd like...I admit I have some strange reading habits. But I don't go out to the bars, I don't go the casinos (of which there are a LOT here!), and I don't spend much on clothes!

By the way, I read these books on Kindle. I'm not sure if they are available in print or not.

Here's another photo from my China trip in 2008. I thought this photo turned out pretty well for a very amateur photographer!

Have a great day. Not sure when I'll post again as I'll be starting my long week at work on Thursday. Will have to see if I can come up with any really interesting or funny ideas!

Monday, November 7, 2011

You Know You're Getting Old When.... Part Deux

...The music you listened to in high school is now playing on the 'oldies' station.

...You're using Tylenol for arthritis pain instead of hangover pain.

...You're glad you won't ever have to go back to the dating phase.

...You realize you have Dunlop's Disease, wherein your belly dun lop over your belt.

And Last But Not Least:

...You have a lot more in common with your mother-in-law than you used to.

An interesting trend on Twitter today...#Doctors Better Than Conrad Murray.
Hmmm....Jack Kervorkian? (Only if you have a terminal disease) Marcus Welby? (How many of you are old enough to know who that is?) Doctor Seuss? (One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish) Doctor Doolittle? (You'll need a big barn) Hawkeye Pierce? (Where's the martini glasses?) Dr No? (Where's Sean Connery when you need him?)

Another trend is #Things I Can't Live Without.
Nacho Cheese Doritos (What else do you snack on at 4am?) Books (I should have put that one at number one) Caramel Apples (I see a trend here....mostly food) Friends (except we haven't had anyone over to our house in the 5 years we've lived here. Oh Well) Travel (and on that note, here's today's picture)

This is a bus in Beijing. Just kidding. :-) This truck happened to pass us on our way to see the Great Wall, and I thought it was pretty funny.

Have a great day, and I'll see you when I come up with another idea!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Lessons of Glee

As you've probably figured out, I work night shift. Because of this, I see very little television; usually just snippets while I'm at work. When I'm home, I tend to spend my time reading. Recently, though, my husband got us set up with something called Roku. I don't know how it all works, but somehow we're able to get television and movies from NetFlix, Amazon, etc.

Last night I actually turned it on and started watching old episodes of the TV series "Glee".I know it's been on for several years now. I have seen re-caps of it on the YouTube channel of Buck Hollywood. I didn't know what all the fuss was about; I though it was just a teeny-bopper show. (LOL, isn't that a 1960's word?)

Sure, the musical numbers are a bit cheesy. I don't know if the actors are actually singers as well, it's possible the voices are supplied by others. One thing I did notice, though, is that the overall theme of the show seems to be acceptance. Acceptance of who you are and acceptance of others, especially if they are different from you. I'm sure all of you remember how high school was. This must be a universal thing; I doubt that my high school was any different than yours. There were "the popular kids", "the athletes", "the stoners", "the loners", etc. I went to a very small Catholic school, but if we were larger, I'm sure we would have had "the band kids" and "the theater kids" as well.

Every episode of Glee seems to bring in a new group of kids, and shows them learning how to accept one another, even against prejudice and fear. The kids are learning that although they may have different interests,backgrounds, and families they are still basically the same. Everyone has fears about fitting in, about being accepted, and about learning to love themselves.

The last episode I watched last night was especially poignant to me. There is one character, Kurt, who fulfills most of the stereotypical ideas of a gay kid. He dresses in a bit of a flamboyant style, he loves to sing and dance, he has lots of girl friends, etc. He also has a father who is the stereotypical tough guy. He wants Kurt to be a real guy's guy; play football, not dance around in a unitard lipsyncing to Lady Gaga. One of Kurt's friends inadvertently blurts out that Kurt has joined the football team, so Dad is thrilled and wants to go to Kurt's first game. This puts Kurt in the position of having to actually try to get on the team to fulfill his father's expectations.

To make a long story short, Kurt does manage to get on the team and eventually finds the acceptance (although grudging) of the jocks. Kurt goes home that night and 'comes out' to his father as gay. Surprisingly enough, Kurt's dad says he's known that Kurt is gay since he was three years old.(All he wanted for his birthday was 'sensible heels'!) Exceeding all of Kurt's expectations, his dad is accepting and tells Kurt that he loves him no matter what his orientation is.

I thought this was a wonderful example of how life should be for all the teenagers (and even adults) who are having trouble accepting who they are. I suppose that's naive of me, but there you are. There are probably millions of people out there who live lies because they are afraid they won't be accepted by those closest to them. And certainly there are lots of examples of kids or adults who take their own lives because of this. Jamey Rodemeyer is the most recent example.

This show has long since been shown on national TV. I hope that there were a few families who watched the show together and were able to find acceptance in their own lives.

You all have probably also picked up that I have strong feelings about suicide, from my own experiences. I've never had anyone close to me go through this, and I hope I never do. But I also hope that if there's anyone out there struggling with feelings of fear, worthlessness, or despair that they find someone close to them they CAN talk to. The loss of one person is the loss of something precious, and the loss of great potential. Can you imagine how our world might be without just one person?

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Pimp Your Blog

Okay, I know I don't have too many followers, but you have to start somewhere!

I have to pimp this blog, This is a very interesting blog by my niece,Christie Ellis. Yes, it's okay to publish her name, as she does so in her own blog. She doesn't know I'm pimping her blog, however. :)

Anyway, it's an interesting foodie blog, with healthy recipes and information. Why am I pimping her blog, as I'm neither healthy nor a cook? Some of you out there may be both, of course!

So if you get a chance, take a look at her blog. It's new, it's interesting (even for someone like me, who is worthless in the kitchen), and it looks a whole lot more professional than mine! Seriously though, it looks like she's got some great ideas for food that's healthy AND fun.

And while you're at it, maybe you can tell someone about my blog? I'm just a pretty normal person in a small town in Nevada talking about odd and interesting things in my life and in the world. Maybe I can hit TEN followers!

Thanks for all you do!

If you'd like me to pimp your blog, just give me a shout out. I might be good for one new follower; myself if no one else!

Friday, November 4, 2011


Hey, I have SIX followers! Unfortunately at least two of them are me and DH, but at least I'm not talking to myself any more! Thanks to one and all of you!!

The Kardashian Effect or How to Ruin the Sanctity of Marriage All By Yourself

The big news on Twitter, blogs, and probably everywhere else this week (while I've been working!) has been the news that Kim Kardashian has filed for divorce after a whole 72 days of marriage. Evidently she (and her family) has been crying for privacy "in these trying times". All this from someone who, along with her sisters, has become one of the biggest media-whores of the last year or two. Oh, and lest we forget, the mother (Kris Jenner, I think) has a new book out (such a coincidence that it is released the SAME week as Kim's divorce news!). (Poor Bruce Jenner; once an olympic champion, now just a bad reality show daddy)

I think I've written before that I don't understand how people like this become so well known for actually having done little to nothing of merit. People spend millions of dollars, hours (if not days) of time, and god knows what else, following the ridiculous escapades of people like this. In fact, I probably shouldn't even be writing about this, because I'm giving them their own 15 minutes of fame for no reason either! I really don't know what this woman and her family are all about; I spend my time either working, reading, or sleeping. Right, DH?
But I have to agree with one of my favorite YouTubers, Buck Hollywood (What the Buck)(Michael Buckley) who is completely fed up with people like this who throw themselves into the public eye, make MILLIONS of dollars off them, then cry like babies that they want privacy when they do something ELSE stupid to make even more money!Of course, all this controversy does is allow them more time and money for doing NOTHING REDEEMING with their lives!!

But I guess that's typical (or maybe, usual would be a better word) for folks who suddenly achieve a certain level of fame. They must want to be famous, because they pursue things like singing, music, acting, NFL, NBA, golfing, etc etc etc, but once they become well-known they start whining about how they don't want to be anyone's role model, poster child, or political activist. HELLO!?!?!!!! That's what happens when you put yourself out there for BILLIONS of people to see, talk, gossip, laugh, and make fun of! How can you become angry with the effects of something you did to yourself?

I suppose you really can't know ahead of time what the effects of fame will be. And once you have it (fame) you can't give it back. Celebrities, for the most part, seem to handle things well. I won't mention people like Lindsay Lohan, Britney Spears, Charlie Sheen, and the afore-mentioned family Kardashian. Or, gee, Tiger Woods, OJ Simpson (now a resident of the Nevada Dept of Corrections, lol), the dog-fighting football guy, the multitude of sport stars accused of rape, the many rock stars who destroy hotel rooms, and the hundreds of temperamental actors!

What was the point of this post? Oh, yeah, the effect of celebrity. Having never been a celebrity and probably never will be one in the future, maybe I'm a bit too critical. But what do they expect? What do you guys think?

P.S. How was your Halloween? I had to work, DH stayed home and turned off the lights so he wouldn't have to answer the door, and now we'll be eating candy till NEXT Halloween!

P.P.S. Oh Yeah, and people say that same-sex marriage will ruin the sanctity of marriage? I think Kim K. is doing a good job of that all by herself!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

You Know You're Getting Old When....

...You start thinking about retirement, how soon you can take it (years, months,
weeks, days) and what you'll do when it's upon you.

...You color your hair to cover the gray, not because it's fun!

...You start calling popular music "noise".

...You begin to appreciate and understand all the things your parents said and did
for you when you when a teenager.

...You recognize less than five people featured in an issue of People magazine.

...You no longer think it's fun to go out to the bars and get drunk.

...You wonder "What the hell was I thinking?" when you remember the years you were
going out to the bars.

...You begin to look forward to menopause rather than dreading it.

...You realize you are closer to your death than your birth.

...You begin to wonder how you'll pay for your child's marriage instead of
their schooling.

...You notice your health care provider is young enough to be your child (or
grandchild) YIKES!

...One of your coworkers is pregnant and you think "I'm glad it's her and not me"!

...You realize you could become a grandparent at any time now but you pray it
won't happen for years.

In case you're wondering, I've been thinking a lot lately about how old I am! It seems only yesterday I was still young!

Big thanks to DH for fixing my laptop so I could get online again!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

An Apology

I was just reading over some of these posts, and have found numerous spelling and grammar errors. I'd like to blame this on this notepad computer I'm working on, but truthfully it's more my editing ability. I've recently been reading what I think are some self published books on Kindle. (Mainly because they're cheaper. DH isn't too happy with my Amazon/Kindle addiction) A lot of these writers are pretty good, but the editing of some of these books leave a lot to be desired. Obviously I should take my own advice (which I commented on someone else's blog today) to not throw stones in my own little glass house.

So bear with me until I figure out how to work this notepad better, or get better at typing with two fingers. I better not try to publish any books myself until I get this down!

Oh, and by the way, I'm due to go back to work to morrow night for my 7 day stretch, so I may not have time to post again for a week. Not that there are hundreds of folks out there waiting with bated breath for my next installment!

Technology Today; Positive or Negative?

As DH and some of you out there may know, I'm not particularly tech savvy. I know enough to muddle through this blog, use email, surf the net, and order things online, but that's about it. DH, of course, is a tech genius, writing his own code (whatever that is) for his web site and others, seems to be able to do all sorts of sneaky things online, and has two degrees in electronics thanks to the US Air Force. DH has also learned through his job in a hospital that nurses and doctors are about as dumb about computers as a box of rocks. If I go to him with a question or a problem, I have to have him "dumb down" his explanation to about a first grade level.

So that's my question today: Is technology today really worth it? There are some things that I couldn't do without. I LOVE my Kindle e-reader and wouldn't leave home without it. How else can you carry around hundreds of books in the palm of your hand? (I have 800 and counting on mine currently) I also really like my android phone, now that I can actually do more with it than just talk on it. I keep up with the Facebook stuff a lot better than I did when I had to get on the computer to do it, and I've become obsessed with Twitter.

BUT...we recently switched from satellite internet to cable internet. (I think that's what happened, but I could certainly be wrong) Now for some reason when I go to get online with my laptop I get some weird messages preventing me from getting to Google. But if I use my tablet (which I'm using now) I can get right on. What's up with that? Okay, logic says it's probably a problem with the laptop, right. The problem with the tablet, though, is that the keyboard is right on the screen, so it's not easy to type on. ( in other words I'm back to the two finger style of typing) And with the tablet you can't be as precise with cursor placement as you can with a mouse. So for instance, if I find a spelling error at the top of this page, it's really hard to go back and fix it. Maybe this is a problem with the operating system more than anything. This tablet doesn't run on windows, it's android. See my frustration?

In any case, I'm sure when DH reads this he'll have an appropriate detailed explanation for these issues, most of which I won't understand. *sigh* What's a computer-retarded nurse to do?
By the way, does anyone else think that computer companies are crazy like foxes because as soon as you buy a piece of electronics, they become obsolete within a year when the "next best thing" comes out? I'm on my second Kindle since they originally come out (maybe 3 years ago?) and the Kindle Fire releases in November. It's now going to have s color screen for TV, movies, magazines, and books. I've started to lust over it, but DH is also talking about a different kind of tablet with a REAL keyboard you can use with Bluetooth.

Never fear. Even though I've thrown out all these fancy words, I still don't really have a clue when it comes to this kind of stuff. I can only hope that my hospital will someday get a computerized charting system so I don't have to triple chart everything when I get a new patient admission. It's still hard to believe that the little 40 bed hospital I worked for before this was more advanced than my current employer. I guess you can never win!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Buckingham Palace to become a hotel?

Buckingham Palace to become a hotel?

Wouldn't this be fun? I'd love to stay in a palace!

What's New With You?

Let's see; what day is today...It's Tuesday, isn't it? That's kind of funny because part of what I do at work is assessing my patients. One of the main things is to find out if they're oriented. I.e. do they know where they are, what day it is, who they are, etc. Half the time I'm not even sure what day it is, and I'm trying to find out if they know! This happens if you work nights. You're never really sure what day it is, and if you're trying to pass something on to another nurse, it's hard to remember what day it happened on! Oh joy *sigh*.

It's also a challenge to keep up with relationships. I work nights and DH works days. On the days we both work, we see each other for about an hour per day. He leaves for his job at about 5:30 am and I get home about 8:00 am. Then he gets home about 4:15 pm, and I leave for work at 5:15 pm!
But maybe that's one thing that holds the relationship together. We don't see much of each other so there's no time to fight! Sometimes we talk more in texting than we do in real life!

It's getting on towards Halloween. I have to work Halloween night so it will be up to DH to pass out candy. Somehow I suspect the light will remain off and we'll have a lot of candy for ourselves! Besides I think our dog would probably scare off all the trick or treaters. Mainly he just likes to lick you, but at 70 pounds he is a bit intimidating, especially to little kids!
Speaking of Halloween, I put a link to a video on my Facebook just a little while ago. It's a great light show for Halloween. Go check it out. I think you'll enjoy it!

There was an interesting link on Twitter today. According to the Wall Street Journal, something like 86% of working Americans are obese and/or have some type of chronic medical condition that causes them to lose time from work, be less productive while at work, plus cost billions of healthcare dollars. It was interesting to see it in print, but I have to say I'm not surprised. The majority of patients I have seen in the hospital in the last 10 years are I'll due primarily due to some type of self-inflicteddisorder. Lung disease from smoking, liver disease from drugs or alcohol, multiple side effects from obesity, etc. This is not to say that I or any nurses are blameless. There are a whole lot of obese nurses, a lot of respiratory therapists that smoke, etc. It's the usual "Do as I say, not as I do" kind of thing. I've often thought, though, that the most effective way to keep young kids from smoking or drinking would be to show them someone in the last stages of lung or liver disease. It's not pretty, believe me!

Anyway, I certainly don't mean to be so preachy....

So to end today's post, let me share with you a picture.

This is another photo I took in China in May 2008. It's funny how you can take literally hundreds of pictures, and you get probably less than 10 really good shots. This is one of mine!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

My Trip To China

In very early May 2008, I spent about 10 days in China. I'm sure you're wondering why on earth would a person go to China? Well, it was more of a fluke than anything. I was browsing various travel sites on the web that I had seen in the magazine "Budget Travel". I was basically trying to find a trip to go on that wouldn't cost me an arm and a leg. I also knew that I wanted to go on a group tour, since I'm not THAT brave to try and go to a foreign country completely by myself! Anyway, I ran across a company based in Seattle called China Spree. I knew absolutely nothing about them, but they seemed to have overwhelmingly positive reviews from people who had taken their trips. They included airfare, hotels, full-time guides, and ALL meals in the cost of their trips. So after finding a relatively short ten day trip, I took the plunge and booked a trip. This was before the 2008 Summer Olympics, which took place in Beijing. At the time, I knew NOTHING about China, and I was basically only going because the trip was affordable! (Yep, since marrying DH, I've become amazingly thrifty with my money. Hard to believe, but true.)

It was a grueling 13 hour trip to Beijing, but somehow I managed to get a row of 3 seats all to myself. Anyone who has traveled in the last 15 years knows how rare that is! However, I was kind enough to agree to share my three seats with a nice gentleman who was traveling with several other people and was a bit more cramped.
Arriving in Beijing was pretty overwhelming for someone who has lived most of the last 15 years or so in very small towns. Beijing as a population of about 12 or 13 MILLION people. I don't know that they have any air quality standards, because the sky there was literally brown.

Oops! That's not Beijing! *giggle* Let's try that again.

Now, if I did that right, you see how brown the sky is in Beijing. Not all of Beijing is as poor looking as this, however. This is one of the very old neighborhoods called "hutongs". Most of Beijing is very modern, high rise skyscrapers. The other main parts of Beijing are Soviet-era cement buildings that are pretty ugly. I don't think I took any pictures of them, because believe me, they are not much to look at.

Just as a side note: Another good think about the company I took the tour through is that they cater to very small groups. I think our group had 18 people total. This is very unusual for group travel. Most companies drag around groups of 40 or more.

I will admit that while in China I did a very American tourist-type thing. I went to McDonald's! Hey, you have to see how cultures are different, right? The menu in China is mainly centered on fish and chicken, but they did have Big Macs if I remember correctly. It's also very difficult to find diet soda in China; I think I had one diet soda the whole time I was there. And if you like ice in your soda, don't plan on getting it. It just isn't served that way there!

The highlight of the trip, though, was the visit to the Great Wall. There are portions of the wall all over China, in varying degrees of upkeep. Of course the sections near large cities are very well restored for visiting tourists.(Especially at that time, just before the Olympics) Here is a (the only) picture of me that was taken on the entire trip.

I can't stand to see myself in photos; sue me. *sigh*

Rather than turn into that annoying relative or friend who bores you with their 500 photos of their vacation, I'm going to stop there. Suffice it to say, visiting China was a once-a-lifetime experience. I'd recommend it to anyone. It's also one of those things that would be next to impossible to arrange on you own; I strongly advise you to go through a tour company. The language barrier alone makes a tour company worth their weight in gold (or yuan, as the case may be). It may take you a few days to get used to the food. Chinese food in China is NOTHING like Chinese food here in the states. But I guarantee that even with the stress of the travel, the changes in culture, the squat toilets (thankfully not in the tourist hotels), and even the food, you'll be glad you visited China!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Can't We All Just Get Along?

I know that sometimes the internet can give us a false sense of knowing other people; people can reinvent themselves with no one the wiser. Even before I started writing this blog, I read blogs by other people, including some with which I have very little in common with. (I suspect the grammar of that last sentence is very wrong *sigh*) I find it fascinating to get a little peek into another person's life, seeing what they are experiencing, how they handle it, etc. I wish I had had something similar when I was in my late teens and early twenties. Perhaps I wouldn't have felt so strange and alone at times.

But that isn't what I'm meaning to talk about. One of the blogs I read frequently was written by a young man 19 years old who is just finding his way in his adult life, dealing with his first (and hopefully long-lasting) love, living on his own, exploring what he wants to do with his life. Recently he had evidently been having problems dealing with members on another online community which is SUPPOSED to be dedicated to people interested in books and reading. He didn't go into any details, but by reading between the lines I got the impression that these people were not being kind to him. He had started counseling and while this may not have been completely related to this other group of people, it appeared to be at least pertially related. Today I went to his blog and found that he posted his "last post", again referring to the people from this other site. No further details were given, but I can't help feeling sad and also a bit worried about him.

What has our society come to that we feel free to be mean to, or even blatently attack people whom we don't know? I don't know about you, but I was raised according to the "If you can't say anything nice, then don't say anything at all" school of thought. (Thanks Mom and Dad) Maybe I take this to the extreme; DH frequently says I should speak up for myself more often. Has the anonymity of the internet given us permission to say and do all the nasty, rude things we are too afraid to say in our real life? Has the freedom of reinventing ourselves allowed us to forget decent politeness and kindness? I certainly don't have any answers, but I wish I knew who some of the people are who have been so unkind to thus young man such that he feels that he can no longer be himself, or share his life safely with others. It's strange to me, because all of the comments on his blog were overwhelmingly positive. The people who read his blog seemed to genuinely like him and found his blog funny, thoughtful, heart-warming, and loving.

I think we have to go back and look at our values and morals. Maybe I don't stand up for myself as much as I should, but at least I don't feel I have the right to tear someone else down to make myself feel better.

Thorny, you may never see this, but we'll miss you. I hope someday you'll come back and try again.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

To Every Thing There is a Season

Most of you who are reading this are now experiencing the changing of the seasons. Here in Nevada, we basically only have 2 seasons. Brown & Hot or Brown & Cold. About the only time we have any green is early in the spring when the desert is just starting to come back to life again. Before too long everything is back to it's normal brown sagebrush and dirt.

I have to admit I've often said I don't care to ever go back to live in Michigan because of the 6 month winters. But I've found that I actually do miss having an actual Fall. I remember the changing colors, the smell of burning leaves, crispy cold temperatures in the mornings, the smell of fresh school supplies, and of course the excitement coming up to Halloween. (I've heard that the sense of smell is the strongest for 'sense memory'. Hmmm)One of my very favorite parts of fall was the huge caramel apples I could buy at an orchard near Grand Rapids. They only sold them during September & October, and possibly into November before Thanksgiving. Here you can only get caramel apples if you make your own, or if you go to the Rocky Mountain Candy Shop and pay $5.00 apiece for them! Of course not only do they have your 'regular' caramel apples with and without peanuts, you can get apples covered with M & Ms, cookie crumbs, chocolate chips, and all kinds of stuff.
But anyway, I better quit while I'm ahead; I'm giving myself a craving!

About a week ago (Oct 5, to be exact) I came out of work at about 7:15 in the morning and looked up to see fresh snow on the hills west of Reno! I can see getting some snow around Halloween, but at the BEGINNING of October? I was pretty upset about that! The next day I saw a photo posted on Twitter from someone in Colorado at about 7000 feet elevation, and they had what looked like a good six inches of snow on the ground! I better stop my complaining; things could be a lot worse.

On the positive side of the Nevada winter, generally we don't get a lot of snow. (As I keep my fingers crossed that I haven't jinxed us...) Most of the snow seems to fall in the Sierra Nevada Range to the West of Reno, and it's mostly depleted by the time it gets to us. (We live about 40 miles east of Reno) Occasionally we get a few inches of snow, but it generally melts within a day or two. We'll continue to hope we have a mild winter again this fall since both DH and myself drive back and forth to Reno for work.

A more interesting note; I hope to go on a short cruise in January. I'm surprised to see how affordable cruises are, even including airfare. Of course all your meals on the ship are included as well, so that saves quite a bit of money also. Alcohol isn't included, but I rarely if ever drink anyway. If anyone is interested in coming along with me, let me know. DH is not interested in going; "I couldn't take that much time off work!" (a week). It must be great to love your job so much that you don't want to be away from it that long! Actually, I think it's more of not wanting to see how much work piles up while he's gone! For those of you who don't know, DH is retired from the Air Force, and has had his fill of waiting in lines, crowding into airplanes and being surrounded by strangers all the time. But that's okay; he doesn't care if I want to go places so we're both happy!

I know this hasn't been a terrifically interesting blog, but I guess that just goes to show that life isn't always full of fascinating or funny things to pass along. But I wanted to get one more entry in before I head back to work for my next stretch of working six of the next seven days! While you're sleeping, think of me busily at work pushing drugs (:-) and answering the ubiquitous (oooh, big word!) call lights!

By the way, I was shocked to hear at work the other night that the Lions and Tigers are actually doing well this year! (Oh My!) Is the Silverdome still there, or have they torn it down yet? How about the old Tiger Stadium? The last time I was back in Pontiac, it was sad to see just how poorly Pontiac and the surrounding area is doing. It's beginning to look like a ghost town.

Take care all, and I'll try to come up with a more interesting blog for next time!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

10 Secrets Your Nurse WILL Tell You!

I got the most recent Readers Digest yesterday, and the cover story is "50 Things Your Nurse Won't Tell You". I'm sure I can't re-write the story here, but it was actually pretty accurate. So since no one from Readers Digest called to get my take on the subject, I thought I'd share my secrets with you.

1. Yes, this shot IS going to hurt. I'm going to jab you with a sharp metal object, what do YOU think? (Sorry, DH. I had to use it! *hee hee*)

2. When you go to the ER, your nurse might very well be thinking " Hi, I'm your nurse. What stupid fucking thing did YOU do to yourself today?"

3. When you push your call bell and the person who answers asks what you need, they're NOT trying to get into your business. They're just trying to find out who is the best person to send in to help you. You don't necessarily need the nurse to pour you some water or get you a snack.

4. Speaking of snacks...this is a HOSPITAL. Not Denny's or your local Holiday Inn. It's not our job to feed your family or find accommodations for your husband and two kids. THEY need to go home, and YOU need to get better.

5. And by the way, no it's NOT appropriate to have your girlfriend stay the night with you in YOUR bed. *eewwww* (if you're feeling up to that, you shouldn't be in the hospital anyway!)

6. We realize that being in the hospital is scary and it's nice to have a friendly face available or to speak with the doctor with you. Sometimes that's a good idea. BUT...keep in mind that the staff still needs to work and in order to help you, we have to be able to reach you. That's why visiting hours were invented.

7. If you're a frequent visitor to your local hospital because of your liking for drugs or alcohol, we WILL take care of you. But the more often you visit for these same self-inflicted illnesses without attempting any changes in your lifestyle, the less likely we are to have any sympathy for you.

8. We know it's no fun being sick in the hospital. However, WE didn't force you to come here. If you're angry at your wife for making you come to the hospital or angry at the doctor for admitting you, PLEASE don't take it out on the staff. We just work here. However ill-advised (STUPID) it may be, you DO have the right to refuse to be admitted. If you're going to be rude and abusive, we'd just as soon you stayed home and annoyed your wife. (No offense, but this type of patient usually IS a guy)

9. If it takes longer than 5 minutes for the nurse to come to your room when you call, it's not because they're all sitting at the desk having coffee. Chances are, your nurse has 5, 6, or more other patients besides you. If there are any nurse aides, THEY probably have 10-15 patients to care for. Try to be a PATIENT patient. We're running as fast as we can!

10. Remember those magic words 'please' and 'thank you'. They'll get you a lot further when it comes time for pain medicine, fresh ice water, or a clean gown.

Seriously, though, for the most part I enjoy my job. I know everyone expects a lot these days because of the high cost of health insurance, drugs, and limited benefits. The average hospital staff, however, has no control over any of those things. We're just trying to work within the system to help you get better the best that we can. Believe me, we don't like hearing the horror stories of how hospital stays go wrong any more than you do. The LAST thing any person working in health care wants is to be involved in a situation occurs in which a person is injured or, god forbid, dies.

One last thought..."'s our job to SAVE your ass, not KISS it!"

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Why I Love Modern Pharmacology

When I wrote the little blurb about myself (over there to your right) I make a comment about how
modern pharmacology keeps me smiling. I thought I'd take a minute to explain that comment.

About 17 years ago, I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder. At the time, I was going through some major stress in my life. As women try to do, I was taking everything on myself and thinking I should be able to "fix" everything even if it wasn't even my problem. It got to yhr point where I was about one step from making what is called "a permanent solution to a temporary problem. When you're this sunk into a black hole, it's REALLY hard to pull yourself back out of it. A lot of people find this hard to understand. You get a lot of comments like " Just think positive", "Don't worry so much", and "Think about all the blessings in your life". What people don't understand, though, is that the person with depression can't help worrying, can't think positive, and doesn't see blessings in their life. I remember my mind going around in circles worrying about EVERYTHING, thinking that everything that was happening was my fault, and that if only I could do something different everything would be better.

I think that's where the idea that depression is a chemical imbalance of the brain comes in. The depressed person is LITERALLY unable to see anything in a positive light. And, of course, there's the feeling that everything going on is your fault, everyone in your life would just be better off without you. Luckily, I was able to spend a few days in the hospital and start getting my head on straight, as well as starting on some good drugs!

For quite a while even after you're feeling better you have to deal with the continued feeling of "I should be able to handle this" and some shame for having to take drugs in order to feel better about yourself. It took me five or six years to get past those feelings. I finally came to the conclusion that I have to think of depression the same as any chronic illness. If I had diabetes or high blood pressure I would have to take medicine for the rest of my life, so what's so bad about taking pills for depression?

Now I DO feel grateful for my entire life. I don't take on everyone's problems, and I do feel like I can handle almost everything that comes along. Even though I've had to change medications several times ( sometimes they seem to become less effective over time) I'm grateful that there are pills available to help me feel better. (And so is DH, believe me!) Sometimes I worry that when these pills lose their effectiveness, "what will I do if there's no more pills out there?, but in general I just try not to think about that. No need to start worrying about something that may not happen for a while, if ever.

So this little blog entry is not to make anyone worry about my mental health. I really am doing great right now. I just wanted to try and explain some of what a person goes through when they're suffering with depression. I know it's hard not to try and reassure a person that "things will get better", but the best thing you can do is just be there for them. Try to stay in touch and let them know that they are not alone. And if you think they are getting to the point that they might take that permanent solution to a temporary problem, do your best to encourage them to seek help. Let them know how much you love them, and how much you'd miss them if they took that drastic step. Don't be shy about bringing up that scary subject. You might find they are hoping someone will bring it up, because they're too scared to admit they need help.

In closing, let me just say that I'm more grateful than I can express for all my family and friends out there. You were there for me when I desperarely needed help. You may not even think you did anything, but believe me, you DID!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Happy Birthdays

I forgot to mention it before, but happy birthday to Mom and Pat. Sorry I can't be there (to share the cake and ice cream with you!) Yep, I'm still me. LOL!

Why Do I Travel?

When I travel (which is only about once a year because that's all I can afford) I always go on group tours, and usually I go alone. (Lest you get the wrong impression, I go alone because after 20+ years in the Air Force DH just isn't interested in traveling). People always seem to be amazed that I go by myself, but I'm not really alone, which is the reasoning behind the tour travel.

Anyway, I travel for a couple of reasons. I've always been fascinated with seeing new places, and even as far back as high school I had a wish to go to Paris. I haven't been there yet, but hopefully someday. I also find it fascinating to see places and countries that have been around so much longer than the US. Places like The Forbidden City in China, Sienna in Italy, or the beauty of Vienna Austria. How cool is that?? It's exciting to see places I've seen in movies, like Venice and Rome. Every place I go, I take a picture of the road or path where I'm walking. What could be be more emotional to think Julius Caesar walking on the same cobblestones by the colliseum in Rome, or an emperor walking on the same bricks in the Forbidden City?

Of course, travel is a learning experience, as well. I've been fortunate that the group leaders of each group I've been with has been an amazing well of information. History, customs, artists, architects.And how else would I get to have the pleasure of visiting a school in a small village in Costa Rica, watching the kids sing songs and dance?

I feel I'm so lucky to be able to travel like I am. Even though I may have to work overtime for a year in order to afford a trip, it all seems worth it when I get to see a new country and meet new people. A lot of people aren't able to have the opportunity to travel, but if you are, take advantage of it. I don't think you'll regret it!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Why I support gay marriage - Eureka Street

Why I support gay marriage - Eureka Street

This article was forwarded to me on Twitter and I thought it brings up some interesting points. See what you think. Food for thought.

Where Do Stories Come From?

As you've probably figured out by now, I read a lot. A lot, as in, several books every day, a lot. If books were fattening, I'd be that 1000 pound woman the fire department has to cut out of her house to get her to the hospital.

Not only have I always been a reader, I've always had a secret wish to be a writer. What better job could a person have than to be able to come up with stories that entertain, fascinate, or educate other people. The thing that really stumps me, though, is how authors come up with the ideas for the stories they write. When I've read interviews with authors, they seem to say that a book or story just starts with an idea that they have. Like it just appears in their brain. I'm sure I'm making things sound too simplistic. How did Tolkien come up with the ideas for The Hobbitt and The Lord of the rings? What kind of a mind do you have to have to come up with things like hobbitts, elves, magic rings, demons, and middle earth? When I think of minds like that, I think there's no way I could ever be an author.

For now I guess I better stick with what I know, which for now includes this blog. I'm not sure if anyone is actually reading it, but it helps me get some thoughts out. Maybe one day it will lead to some magical other world, and I'll become as entertaining as Tolkien. Or not. *snort* :-)

I have a lot of admiration for writers, though. Even some of the other blogs I've read are amazing. For people who are not professionals, and some who are much younger than me, some of the folks out in the blogosphere are really talented. So for now, I'll keep reading and hope that someday I can at least make someone laugh, even if I can't take them to a magical land far, far, away. If not, I can always threaten them with an enema tube! MUAHAHAHA!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Does Blogger Have Spellcheck?

Obviously I'm still getting the hang of this blog/gging thing and the way this works. In the last post, I meant to say WIFE, not WOFE. WOFE looks a little too much like WOOF, and since I'm also a WIFE I didn't want anyone to think WIFEs were dogs (WOOFs, get it?) *sigh* I'll never be a celebrity for my comedy.


Have you ever thought about celebrity (or celebrities)? It seems logical to me that 'celebrity is formed from the word 'celebrate'. Therefore 'to celebrate' means to make a person a celebrity, right?

Who are our celebrities today? Movie or television stars, sports players, musicians, and sometimes people who haven't actually DONE anything but get their name out there. (What, exactly, has Paris Hilton done to be 'celebrated?) I like my share of movie stars and musicians just like anyone else; don't get me wrong. But maybe there are other, unknown, people that are more deserving of the title of celebrity. How about a soldier who saves even one of his fellow soldiers, putting his own life on the line while doing it? What about the person who stops to help you out when your car stalls at a traffic light during rush hour? How about the friend who drives you home after you've had too much to drink after work on Friday night?

I think anyone can be a hero. Bring your wofe a flower; put a note with a smiley face into your kid's lunch bag; buy a cup of coffee for the homeless guy sitting on the corner. Anyone can perform a Random Act of Kindness (RAK), whether it's big or small. You can do these RAKs anonymously if you want. Wouldn't it be fun to know you made some's day just a little bit brighter?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

A Win and a Lose

A couple of interesting things happened. The first (which had Twitter all a twitter) was the end in of DADT. For those of you not aware, this is the ruling "Don't Ask Don't Tell", which forbade gays and lesbians from serving openly in the US Armed forces. As of 12:01 am on September 19th, this rule has been abolished. In my opinion, this ruling goes a long way towards the eventual ending of discrimination based on sexual orientation. I can imagine there are a lot of differing opinions out there, so to quote Forrest Gump, "That's all I have to say about that."

At the other end of the spectrum, 14 year old Jamey Rodemeyer committed suicide. Jamey was cyber bullied due to his sexual orientation. Some of you may know that I have a long history of depression myself, so this sort of news is especially difficult to hear. Sexual orientation aside, no human being deserves the abuse this young man endured. Yes, teenage years are difficult, and "kids will be kids" but this is just plain unacceptable in my opinion. There are no "quick fixes" for this problem, but it makes you wonder what sort of values are being taught in the homes of the kids who think it is cool or even okay to treat another human in this way. If you're able to volunteer time or money, consider giving to your community mental health organization, or to your local Boys and Girls Club. The Boys and Girls Clubs of America provide education & career programs, character & leadership programs, health and life skills, and many other programs for kids in all walks of life.

Okay, I'll get off my soapbox now,,,:-)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Miscellaneous Meandering

It's been a few days because I'm in the middle of my work cycle right now. I think hospitals probably have the strangest scheduling options of any industry, I swear. Some have self scheduling where you can make your days different each week if you want to. Some have semi-set scheduling where you can occasionally make changes. We have set schedules where always work the same days and you can't make changes unless you trade with someone BEFORE the schedule is finalized, which is usually 5 to 6 weeks ahead of time. Then of course, some hospitals work 10 hour shifts and some work 12 hour shifts. Very few work 8 hour shifts any more. Mine does 12 hour shifts.

So anyway, I work Thurs, fri, sat; have Sunday off, then work Mon, Tues, wed. THEN I'm off till the following Thursday again. Today is Monday, and the only reason I'm not working tonight is that our census (the number of patients we have) is low. Too many people were scheduled for the number of patients, so I asked to be cancelled. I have an extra day off in the middle of my working days!

I work about an hour from where I live, so I don't get a lot of time to sleep during my work cycle. I get home around 8 or 8:30 am (did I mention I work nights?) try to get to sleep by 10 or 10:30 am, then have to get up at 4pm in order to show, eat, and leave for work by 5:15. My sleep time is 5 or 6 hours if I'm lucky. The day I have off in the middle of the cycle is dedicated to sleeping; usually 18 out of 24 hours.

This actually is a good schedule. I love that I have a whole week off between schedules. I'm able to take short trips without using vacation time, thereby saving up vacation time for when I take a real vacation (like going out of the country). I work overtime in order to take my longer luxury vacations. Only problem being that overtime has been in short supply recently, so I probably won't be going anywhere until 2012 at least. I shouldn't complain, though. I don't know how people with families manage to work 12 hour shifts, let alone if they're single parents.

Enough about work. As you may or may not know, I live in Nevada. The big news here is all about the terrible accident last week at the Reno Air Races. I have to admit I didn't even know it had happened until I went into work that night. It's a terrible tragedy, and I can't imagine being that poor pilot or his family who were there in the audience that day. I can't even describe the feeling I get when I think about the terror that pilot must have been feeling before he crashed.

We've had a lot of sudden deaths here in Nevada. Just ten days ago there was a shooting (or shootings, actually) in an IHOP restaurant in Carson City Nevada. ( Did you know Carson City is the capital of Nevada? Most people think it's Las Vegas!) Another very sad day. Can you imagine going out to breakfast, minding your own business, and suddenly being confronted by an angry man with an automatic weapon? I'm not an NRA member, but it makes you think about gun control. But I suppose people who want a gun are going to get one, one way or another. It's sad, though, that it's the innocent people who get hurt when someone's angry.

Enough of my wanderings for now. My thought for the day: give a hug to those you care about. You never know when you might lose them.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Blog is a Blog is a Blog

Just now I was browsing through some other blogs on this site, and it's interesting the variety of things people post about. Some blog about their families, their hobbies, their lives and experiences. I think all age groups are represented, except possibly the very young and very old. But what we all seem to have in common is the desire to look at our lives and determine our meaning to ourselves and others.

Especially as we get older we are trying to figure out what we've done with our lives and how we've affected other people. Over the last thirty years or so, I've done a lot of thinking along those lines, and I still haven't come up with too many answers. What I DO know, however, is that I feel more calm and happy than I did. Although I don't feel as old as the calendar says I am, I'm not sure I'd want to go back to my teens or twenties.

However, that's not really where I wanted to take this post. One thing I've noticed about some blogs is that we often have similar experiences even though we may not have much in common right now. I just read some entries on a blog that is written by two 18 and 19 year old guys (I should say MEN) who are just starting their college years. They and I probably more different; they are young, I'm mature (at least as far as age goes), they're gay, I'm straight and married; they live completely on the opposite side of the country from me. But their fears, concerns, and worries are the same ones I had some 30-odd years ago! It's nice to know that some things never change, and that I wasn't as weird as I thought I was back then.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Books, Books, Books or Why I Have No Life!

My main hobby is reading. Anything and everything I can get my hands on. Just ask my DH, who pays the bill from Amazon every month! Seriously, though, you have to admit that reading is a pretty harmless hobby when compared to gambling or hitting the bars every weekend. Every time DH complains that we are single-handedly keeping Amazon in business, I remind him about the ex-wife who gambled away all his money while he was in Korea in the air force. I also can't forget to remind him that I could go out shopping for new clothes every week if he'd prefer!

I think books are a great way to escape; to different places, different lives, and different experiences. Then when I go back to work, the real world brings me back to earth with a really big THUD! I'm a nurse, and there's nothing better than cleaning up bodily fluids to remind you that you're not living in a land with werewolves, vampires, or studly men with "shafts" the size of a zucchini!

However, I digress...I just want to thank all you authors out there for sharing your talent with the world and providing endless hours of laughter, tears, heaving bosoms, and roaring climaxes! (climax...climaxes...climaxii? hmmm)

Excuse me now while I go back to the land of fictional heros and heroines. I have 48 hours until I'm scheduled to crash land on earth again.

Monday, September 12, 2011

How Much is That Doggy in the Window?

Okay, what's with dogs and barking? Why do dogs bark, anyway? I was sitting in the bathtub this morning, and all of a sudden the dog starts barking. Nobody's come to the door, I don't hear anything unusual, and the dog is just barking like crazy!

Keep in mind, this is a 70 pound pit bull, so it's not just a little yip or two; it's full-body, bass-deep WOOFING with a bit of a howl at the end! I'm sure if anybody's reading this, you'll tell me it's a territorial thing, right? I don't think he has to worry about his territory, because anyone hearing this barking wouldn't get anywhere close to the house. I know, that's the point of the barking. Hmmm...if they really knew the dog he wouldn't scare anyone. He sounds ferocious but he's really just a big puppy in disguise.

He's a rescue dog; we got him from the SPCA in March of this year. The LAST thing we were looking for was a pit bull having heard all the horror stories about dog fighting, attacks on children, etc. However, when we saw him in the kennel, he was just impossible to resist! He's one of those dogs that smiles, you know? I'll have too see if DH the computer genius can upload a picture for me. Now that he's getting better about jumping on people, he's just a doll-baby! He'd sooner lick you to death than bite you.

Anyway, he's settled down now. My thought for the day is: support your nearest animal shelter, humane society, or SPCA. Even if you can't adopt a dog or cat, consider dropping off a bag of food or some toys. Consider donating an hour or two a week. I bet extra hands are always needed for feeding, walking, or grooming. Animals don't care if you're black, white, straight, or gay. They love you for just being there with a pat or a treat. You've never lived until you've been loved on by an animal!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

What's It All About, Alfie?

I hate to admit how many times I've started over on this post, simply because I'm trying to figure out how this all works, but onward we go...

Contrary to what the above title might indicate, I'm not quite that old!  For those of you young whippersnappers out there, that is a song title from the 60's which I believe was sung by Dionne Warwick. (I know...who's that you ask? Look it up on google!)

What's this blog going to be about? I want to try and share my love of travel, both in the literal sense and the not so literal. I love to travel the world, and in my advancing age I've become lucky enough to begin seeing some of the world I only dreamed about in the past. I hope to share some of those adventures with you they come along.

I've also always been a huge fan of books and reading. I have a great admiration for authors and their ability to find the perfect words to describe a person, place, or emotion. I'm sure I won't come close to their level of talent, but we'll see what happens.

Music is also a great way to get a look at how others think and where they are in their lives each day. We all see the world from different perspectives, which I think we often forget in this crazy world. I know that I have often been surprised when I look at the world through another person's glasses.

I hope you'll stick with me while I figure out this strange and exotic world of blogging. I'd love to hear from you, whether you have advice, tips, criticism or just wat to share your experiences. All are welcome who enter here.