Saturday, January 16, 2010

Day 142: January 16, 2010

Quote of the Day: "Sleeping alone, except under doctor's orders, does much harm. Children will tell you how lonely it is sleeping alone. If possible, you should always sleep with someone you love. You both recharge your mutual batteries free of charge. "-Marlene Dietrich

All I can say about today is that I finished the office.  It's funny, it doesn't really look any different than when I started working on it, when you just glance in there.  All my paints are still suspended from their board. All my school books are still on the shelves.  The computer, laptop and printer are where they belong.  The biggest change is that everything is now organized, the cabinets are a lot emptier, and there is much less clutter in the closet.  True, it may look like there's more in the closet now - because there is.  The file cabinet that was underneath my desk is now in there, as are my canvases and all the other things which are boxed up. So when school starts up next week, I am READY FOR IT. Finally. Well, at least my office is. I still have to power-clean the rest of the house and take down Christmas stuff between now and Wednesday, otherwise I will have to start school and THEN work on it all. And heaven knows I don't want to do THAT!

The kitties seem to finally be mostly back to normal, amazingly. Tiger and Mika are now both curled up together on my bed. I have no idea where Tiny the troublemaker is right now, but since I haven't heard any roaring, screaming, or hissing since early this morning I assume that the trouble should be over.  I know he has been walking around LOOKING for Tiger, I just don't think he has been bothering with attacking him.  Besides that, he seems to be a happy camper. He's sure being clingy still... they all are! I can't wait until Ron can come home and help give these guys a little attention, so that I don't ALWAYS have to be the one that does it.

I think I'm going to go ahead and go to bed early tonight, since I have so much to do tomorrow. I have plans not only to try and clean the house and tear down Christmas stuff, I'll also be meeting Laurie and we're going to be going to Office Depot to pick up a journal for our Mental Health Nursing class, and some minor school supplies. I have looked a little bit at some of the required work for the semester that comes in the course manual, and can't decide if it looks like it will be an extremely easy semester, or if looks are deceiving and even though there is minimal homework in there it will be the super-tough kind.  It doesn't have any instructions on what you're supposed to do with it, so I'm assuming they'll let us know in class whether it will take an hour, a day, or a week to do. Sigh.  I wish they gave instructions at the beginning of the nursing program. You know, like those really great "What to Expect When You're Expecting" books I read when I was pregnant.  Step-by-step, organized, and simple. Let us be PREPARED to learn, and you'd be amazed what people can do. I ALWAYS do better when I know what is expected of me.

But enough ranting for one night, my exhaustion is showing.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Day 141: Evening Post

Okay, since I totally blew it and had to write yesterday's blog this morning, I still have to write tonight's. So....

Things are running pretty crazy here right now. I've been in my office all day trying to sort through the junk and put away all the things from prior semesters to get ready for this semester, and MAN, WHAT A MESS!!!!  As you can see, in typical Carmen fashion, I had to tear everything out in order to put it back where it goes.  Sigh. One of these days you'd think I'd learn that the best way to do things is to plan ahead and KEEP things organized! Believe it or not, though, there IS a system to the way I'm doing things.  I have different piles set up for different things, like piles of "Ron needs to go through", piles of "House stuff", piles of "School stuff"... you get the idea. I'm hoping that I can get a lot of this gone through and taken care of by the end of tomorrow. You know, like shredding all my old Wells Fargo employee stuff. And the cell phone statements from 2004, which I'm not sure why I still had. I did most of that today. I had a shred pile built up that was about a foot high, and I wasn't even through yet! UGH!!! I didn't realize that I had become such a pack rat again... I thought I had that old habit under control, but I guess I didn't. So at the end of the night tonight I am left with about half of what you see in these pictures taken care of, with hopes of NOT waking up in the morning and being overwhelmed with the things that are left. You know how it is when you take care of all the things that you can pigeonhole, categorize and group, and then you sit there looking at the rest of it thinking to yourself that you have no idea what to do with all the stuff that's left? That's where I'm at right now. That's why I'm quitting for the night, before I pull out ALL my hair.

3-ring binders actually make up a lot of the mess.... well, that, and the miscellanoes piles have gotten close enough that they look like one giant pile.


I really do k now what every single pile is. Wouldn't you?


To me, it's organized... to the casual observer, it's chaos in the making!

How funny is it that the one clean place in the whole room is the closet?

Still haven't moved my desktop back into the office now that the heater is fixed, because I've been waiting to get the office cleaned out. It'll probably be back in its home tomorrow.

Too cute to pass up..... wish I could hold MY foot and look comfortable sleeping!!!

Day 141: January 15, 2010

Quote of the Day: "I never think of the future - it comes soon enough." -Albert Einstein

I completely blew it yesterday on writing the blog. I know it, I admit it. And the really horrible part of that is that yesterday was our 15 year wedding anniversary!  I did get to tell Ron happy anniversary through email, over Yahoo messenger, and also on the phone, but that's beside the point.  I had this big plan to put "Happy Anniversary" on here in big, bold letters. I was going to take a trip down memory lane with everyone. Instead, things were so crazy yesterday that it didn't get done.

Tiger came home from the vet's office yesterday. It was so sweet, because the vet's assistant carried him out to me where I was waiting in the office, and I had just started taking him out of her hands when I said hello to him, and as soon as he heard my voice he started purring like crazy. I couldn't even leave the parking lot for an extra minute because he had to meet-and-greet me and give me forehead rubs.  He purred the whole time.  Ever since he got home he has been pretty much his same old self, with the exception of the fact that both the other cats are hissing and growling at him now, I guess because of the strange smells.  Tiny has actually been initiating fights with him, which had been going on since a little before Tiger got sick, but had stopped  when Tiger started to not feel good and did nothing but lay there.  I have read up on it, and having two male cats in the house usually ends up with fighting, not so much if they are fixed, but it will still happen.  And the vet told me that I have to keep his environment as stress-free as possible, because stress can lead to his bladder problems. Great... tell me that repeatedly fighting isn't stressful? I honestly think I'm going to have to get rid of Tiny if he keeps it up.  We'll see... when Mika stops hissing at Tiger I'll know that the vet smell has worn off of him, and if Tiny is still attacking him at that point, it's off to the animal shelter for him.

Last night, I went with my friend Sherrie to a craft group and made a Valentine's Day block.  It turned out okay, and was pretty cute. I'll actually be able to keep it up year-round, if I have a room with pink and brown in it. Or if I just feel like leaving it up even in  a room that it doesn't match.  It was a lot of fun, though, and I really wish that I could go to more of them, but since school starts up next week I know I'll be pressed for time to do anything.  I'm glad that I had fun with it, though.  But the problem is that I was so tired by the time I got home, and busy trying to separate the cats and feed the cats, that I forgot all about the blogging. 

Hopefully this doesn't start happening more often now that I'm about to start school and get super-busy again.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Day 139: January 13th, 2010

Quote of the Day:  "Absence diminishes little passions and increases great ones, as the wind extinguishes candles and fans a fire." ~Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld, translated from French

I HAVE HEAT!!!!!!! Finally, the guy came this afternoon around 4 and fixed the heater. I was up in the attic with him while he did it, and if you've never seen what old heater coils look like, you'll have no idea what I am talking about when I say NO WONDER WE HAVEN'T HAD REAL GOOD HEAT!!!! The coils, which are essentially little springs, were deteriorating into dust they had been so burned up. One was completely disintegrated into small little pieces, and the other two were only a tad behind them.  Maybe having this fixed will not only allow the house to get warmer more efficiently, but also lower the electric bills because the heater won't be trying quite so hard to cool the house.  The guy did say that our unit is only supposed to heat and cool up to a 2000 square foot house, though. I'm not sure how accurate that is, but if he's correct we have a serious problem, because we're pushing three thousand square feet. THAT could be a problem as well. Maybe we should work on figuring out how to close off the bathrooms, and the office, and see if that will help any with the temps in the house?  Nah. Why bother. Too bad we didn't have that money that Cody spent on the cell phone bills, though, because he said that the home warranty people would pay to replace the unit and we would only have to pay whatever the cost is for bringing it up to present-day code.... which would only be around a thousand dollars. DANGIT!!!  Sigh. Oh, well. Lord knows it's going to break again, either the heat or the AC one...  this is the fourth time we've had it worked on since we bought the house... two years ago.  Cody and I are just happy as clams tonight, because we get to finally sleep in our own beds. HALLELUJAH!!!

I got to watch my show last night, finally. One of my absolute favorite love-to-hate characters is now deceased, and his wife was keeping him in the freezer! UGH!!! Not that I blame her for wanting to keep dear hubby around a little longer, but... eeew! How could you??? All in all, though, I suppose I should have watched the last few episodes of last season first, before watching this time, because I went through half the show trying to remember who did what and why this and that were happening, and all that. I had a hard time getting into it, but I'm sure a lot of that is sleep deprivation mixed with freezing my butt off for a week. Sigh. Maybe I'll have better luck on Sunday when I watch the next episode. I sure hope so, because I'd hate for it to go bad now, after three years straight of watching it.

Tiger is doing well at the vet's office.  She said that his urine is looking much better now, and she took the catheter out today.  She has to keep him overnight again just to make sure that he is able to urinate, and then he should come home tomorrow with his medications and the food she wants me to give him short-term.  I sure hope she has a list ready of all the can-and-cant's for us to feed him, because I don't want him to go through this again. We'll see what she recommends, though.  Oh, yeah... I asked her if she ran a BUN and Creatinine on him but she didn't because of the cost and she knew we were having a hard time of it right now.  She did, however, do a stick test and said it was within normal limits, so it looks like his kidneys weren't hurt too badly if at all. Still, better safe than sorry... looks like our spoiled kitties will be even more spoiled once we start feeding them the canned foods. Sigh... I really hate the way that stuff smells, too.  Not only going in, but also on the way out!!!!


Updated House Images

It took forever to load all these pictures onto here, so I just left it uploading images overnight and got up this morning to finish the post.  I don't think I'll be putting any more images onto here, unless it's of the exterior because it IS very time consuming and Ron only wants images of the kitchen, master bath, and the living room. So, without further ado, here they are:

Here is the updated kitchen: I added a stone backsplash and did just a few small modifications, mostly to the island and the breakfast bar.

Looking into the kitchen from the living room.

The view of the kitchen from the breakfast nook.

The kitchen as if just entering it from the living room or the garage.

The master bedroom: I figured out how to do recessed ceilings on the program!

The view when entering the bedroom.

From the far corner, looking at the entry to the master bathroom.

A cutout view that shows the master closet. You enter the closet from the bathroom.

The master bathroom!

As seen when entering from the bedroom.  The black tile walls behind the tub are the walk-in shower.

The view when leaving the shower from the right-hand side, looking toward the toilet closet.

What you see when standing in the shower.  There is a sheet of glass in between the two pillars to protect the rest of the bathroom from the shower water.

The view when leaving the shower from the left-hand side, looking toward the master closet.

Another view of walking out of the shower on the right-hand side.

A cutout view of the master bathroom from the backyard.

A close-up of the shower area.

Well, that's it... hope they make sense to you! :)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Day 138: January 12, 2010

Quote of the Day: "Love is sharing all the wonderful things life has to offer with the person you care most about." – author unknown

I had to go to Vernon today to pick up my books for this semester, and I have to say that I was looking forward to it. If only just because it means that I'm one step closer to graduating!  Laurie and I were going to carpool together to save on gas, like we do during class times, so I met her at Kohl's to pick her up.  While I was there, wearing my "skinny jeans" that are now saggy on me, I thought "Why not see what size I am now?" So I picked out some jeans and went to the dressing room, where I proceeded to get a really great rush. I AM NOW A SIZE 5 IN JUNIORS!!!! I was like, "okay... maybe their sizing is different than it used to be. Let me try on some of the women's sizes in a different brand."  And guess what? I tried on a size 3 in women's... and it fit!!!! HOLY COW! I wanted to jump and scream right there in the middle of the store, but I didn't... I'm much too refined for that. I just walked around with this big, dumb goofy look on my face the whole rest of the time.

I called the vet this morning, and Tiger is doing much better today.  She said that he is more alert and drank some water, and that they were getting ready to give him some food and see how he does with it.  She also said that his urine is getting clearer, which is a good sign. I think I may be able to bring him home tomorrow if he's still doing as well tomorrow. HOORAY! Another reason to be happy about today. However, I am super, super tired today after all this not sleeping well the past five days, so it's hard to actually get excited about much of anything.  I think I'm giong to get the pictures ready of the house and upload them on here, then spend some time putting Ron's frisbee golf pictures into an album.  And after that, my show starts, so I'll be happily entertained after that!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Day 137: January 11, 2010

Quote of the Day: "We will either find a way or make one." - Hannibal

Tiger made it to the vet's office okay, but he is now hospitalized for the next two days so that the vet can insert a catheter to drain his bladder, which was completely blocked with crystallized minerals, otherwise known as bladder stones.  She said that the urine she was able to drain was full of blood, and that it is not a good sign because it indicates kidney damage. She's just not sure how bad the damage is, and told me to call in tomorrow and check up on him. She didn't sound very optimistic about it, but I got to thinking, and blood in his urine could also be caused by the crystals digging into his bladder wall, too. Only time will tell. I'm just glad because he made it through the night last night, and is now at the vet's office where he is being treated with something to help him with his pain. My poor baby!!!! Please, God, please help him recover and get through this and be back to his normal, happy-go-lucky self again!

Here's a picture I forgot to put on the blog the other night, yet ANOTHER time I caught the three of them all snuggled up... the group mentality thing at work. I'm almost having a mental flashback of a scene from "Without A Paddle"

Today has gone by so fast that I don't even know what happened to it. One minute I was waking up, and the next minute it's time to do the blog. I can't even remember what all I did today, which mostly means that I sat at the computer engrossed in my housebuilding.  I've been so busy making changes to it that I forgot to make more high-res screenshots, so here are the two I do have. I'm hoping to do a bunch tomorrow, because I think I figured out a way to get it to work faster. We'll see.

Another kitchen picture, but it's already outdated because I've made some changes... will post the new pictures when I can.  This is taken from the viewpoint where you have just walked through the door from the garage, or got up from the couch to go get a snack. This room will be VERY different in the next pictures, and I think MUCH BETTER!

Here is a cutaway view of the breakfast nook just off the kitchen. This is as if you were standing outside the house looking in. The kitchen is to the right.  Through the doorway is the living room area, and the back patio.

Once again, here's Tiny in front of his new favorite spot... anywhere the space heater is!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Day 136: January 10, 2010

Quote of the Day:  
"Ever absent, ever near; Still I see thee, still I hear;
Yet I cannot reach thee, dear!"  ~Francis Kazinczy

Hey, what do ya know... today is computer code!  01-10-10.  You know, the way all computer data is transferred using just zeros and ones. I know, just a weird random thought for the day's end. I can't help it, so I am just going to blame it on sleep deprivation. Can I do that? I don't see why not.

Today has been a really up and down sort of day.  Woke up to the freezing cold, bad.  Got to get the house cleaned up a little bit, good.  Sgt Guillory and his wife stopped by to drop off a Christmas present from the squadron, good.  Had just finished mopping the floor by the front entry with vinegar, bad.  Got a lot of very detailed work done on the kitchen in the houseplans, good.  But the most important and horrible occurrence of the day is Tiger, my favorite and most precious kitty. 

He is very, very sick, and that is the worst thing of the entire day. Even worse than having people come over and the house reeking of vinegar (which I find mortifying) and not having heat during the coldest part of the year.  I have been noticing that he has been taking more and more frequent trips to the litterbox over the last week or two, and have chalked it up to him "marking his territory" or something. No big deal, right? Well, last night when I went to change the litterbox I noticed all these little tiny spots of pinkish-orange urine on the tile in front of it.  Okay, so at that point I knew that one of the kitties was sick, but not WHICH kitty. Well, this morning Tiger is walking around real slow, in pain, crying out, growling, and the only time he can get any decent amount of pee out is when he lays down on his side on the tile and tries to pee.

I called the vet and left a message to have her contact me, but she never did answer me back. So I'm going to call up there first thing in the morning and take him in.  The poor thing can barely stand to move, and even though he is the most sweetest, most loveable cat I've ever seen in my entire life, he now growls when you try to pick him up. He is completely the opposite of his usual self. Poor little guy hasn't eaten or drank anything all day long that I've seen. And anyone who knows this cat, they know how rare an occurrence that is. Usually he's bullying the other cats away from the food dish and eating as often as five or six times a day. He's not a fat-cat-approaching-Garfield-status for nothing.  That boy LOVES to eat!  I am sooooo upset that he is in pain and there is nothing I can do about it!!!

Tomorrow morning can't come nearly fast enough for me, so that I can take him in to the vet and get him looked at. Maybe she can give him something to stop the pain. My heart is breaking just watching him go through this!  And all while having no heat, adding insult to injury. I'm trying to keep him comfortable, but I really doubt that anything is helping him at this point. All I can do is lay there and pet him and pray that he makes it through this. And you can tell that I'm upset about it, because tonight was the SEASON PREMIERE of my favorite show EVER, the show I've never missed an episode of... and I forgot all about it until after it was over! Come on 7am!!!

Day 135: January 9th, 2010

Quote of the Day:  [A] final comfort that is small, but not cold: The heart is the only broken instrument that works. ~T.E. Kalem

Man, I just can't get used to this! It's 2010! That's twenty-ten!

OHMYGOSHCANITHAVEBEENTHATLONG? Really?  And I just barely started to get used to writing '09 on paperwork and checks. Sigh... I guess I'll get used to it again, but hopefully a lot faster than I did last year. Or the year before. Although, I have to admit, a couple months ago I accidentally wrote '08.  I mean, seriously... does Alzheimer's hit in your thirties? Or is this an entirely different type of dementia?  I wonder if that is considered a handicap.

The guy came and looked at the heater today. It turns out that all the heat strips have gone bad.  And my worst fears have come true, because he doesn't have the part and has to order it. On Monday, because he didn't show up until three-thirty and the manufacturer closes at 11 on Saturdays.  He says he's going to try and order it to ship overnight, but that means the absolute soonest it can be fixed is Tuesday. HE says, anyways. If it's coming overnight, it will still be the afternoon before it's delivered, which probably means he'll come out and fix it on Wednesday. Sigh.  I ran out of firewood around 2pm, and turned on the little electric spaceheater we have. The room was 68 when I ran out of firewood, but now it's at 63 degrees in here, and it's supposed to get down to 14 tonight for a low.  Not a chance of the heater keeping up, not when the rest of the house is fricking freezing. I just hope the pipes don't freeze up. THAT would be so typical of my luck ever since Ron left!  But let's think for a second.... The air conditioner lost a condenser, the water heater caught on fire, various kid problems, and now the heater goes down... What else is there LEFT but the plumbing that could possibly have issues? Oh, wait... maybe I'd better not tempt fate and ask that question.

I did take the time to do my weight loss pictures this morning, which was no picnic at ALL with the house this cold.  I was pretty happy with my results so far, and am very happy that I have almost reached my goal.  And I have a whole two months before the love of my life is due to come home again! WOOHOO!!!!  Plenty of time to get all my muscles firmed up, right? If I do it right, anyways.  I'm going to have to sit down and write up a workout plan so that I can get started on it.  No sense putting it off, just in case I might need that extra time.  And it's going to get really hectic once school starts, too, so I'll have to really try hard to find the time, and fit it in around the monstrous study sessions we have to have.  And for the past two semesters we only had one class and a clinical to study for. THIS semester, we have TWO clinical days a week, and three classes! And then at the end of the semester, we'll have an additional clinical day, making THREE clinical days a week. Plus the extra studying for the HESI exam, the test we have to pass in order to graduate.  They've been pounding THAT one into our heads since the first day of the very first semester: NO pass, NO graduate. 

I'm going to be a busy, busy girl... I just hope I can keep my head above water!  I'm really glad that no one warned me about how bad nursing school really is BEFORE I was accepted, or I might have never even gotten started. I'd still just be doing some boring, dead-end job somewhere for poor man's wages. Not that I have a job right now, but at least after May I'll have the potential to GET a good job.  That's what's keeping me going through all this, the fact that there's an end in sight, and now it's within reach.