Sunday, March 27, 2005


Happy Easter Chickadees!
I have not had ANY chocolate yet. I guess I'm trying to keep track of those points. And, somehow I have to make up for the 9 points worth of wine I drank last night while trying to figure out Greg and my taxes. (I could go for a nice long walk, or do some exercise to try to burn off some points, but that would require me getting off this chair that now has my ass permanently imprinted on it.)
I actually DID spend about three hours doing our taxes at work on Friday (the Old-fashioned way, with a pencil and calculator) and was quite impressed with myself and excited at the thought of over $7000.00 in returns between the two of us. Greg was skeptical, to say the least. He says that he never gets much of a return as he works for the Government, and they know EXACTLY how much to take off. I was convinced that not only was he going to get back a whopping $1100 for 2004...but also $1400 for the previous year for which he didn't even BOTHER to file a return! And I was going to get back $5500.00 this year! Yippee!!! Money woes be gone!!! I can go to Vegas and not feel guilty for spending money I don't have! The trailer fees can be paid for, and we can afford the repairs. What a huge sigh of relief...SIGH!
Until I re-did our taxes with a newfangled computer programme 'U-file.' OK, probably not so new, but I figured that I would invest in the programme, and PROVE to Greg that we are soon to be RICH.
OK, so imagine my surprise (disappointment) when the computer, in less that 5 minutes, reported our returns to be less than HALF of what I had figured it out to be! Stupid computer! I was SO sure that the computer was wrong, so I looked over my longhand papers again. Ooops! I neglected to continue one of the schedules on the other side of the paper. Shit!!! On all THREE files too! Shit!!! I HATE it when I'm proved wrong! I got up from the desk, and had a shower to clear my mind and decide on my next plan of action...
I know! I will file as common-law spouses! That ought to rake in some cash...technically we have been living together for a year and we are eligible. So, I re-filed on the computer and half an hour later...VOILA! We are now a whopping $40 richer than the first time the computer spit out our supposed refund. $40!!! Hmpff!!! Hardly worth it. And somehow...Common-law just sounds so...well...common. So, I had more wine.
And today, I'm trying to tackle the points. A bottle of wine is 12 points ( and I KNOW I did NOT drink the whole bottle yesterday.) Truth is, I'm not doing as well as I had hoped with the whole Weight Watcher thing. Wine should have ZERO should fall under the Water category.
I would not have ANY problem ticking off the 6 little boxes under 'Water' ...if I could just drink wine instead.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Rite of Passage

Another quiet morning at work. It's 9:25 and I have read the whole Saturday Star...ok, well I scanned it, only stopping at the stories I found interesting.
The Terri Schiavo story bothers me. There is something about the situation that does not sit easy with me. Having worked with Brain Injured patients for most of my 15 yrs of nursing, I have seen a variety of levels of recovery. Young people (under 16 yrs old) tend to do pretty well. Depending on the type of injury, even some 'older' pts don't do too badly, most suffer personality changes, or physical challanges. But, I can tell you that any patient who has suffered an Anoxic Brain Injury does poorly. CPR is a good thing when started immediately (within a few minutes) but outcome is generally very poor when started late. No oxygen to the brain is a bad thing, brain cells start dying immmediately and they do not regenerate.
What is unfortunate for Terri, is that she was 'successfully' resuscitated after a significant 'down time.' In a 30 yr old woman, I can understand why an attempt was made. As Health Care Providers, we are trained to 'get the heart started again', unfortunately, it is more difficult to 'get the brain started again.' The decision to abide by her wishes should have been realized 15 yrs ago, when family members were told that her situation was dire, that she would likely remain in a vegetative state. She should have been allowed to die with dignity at that time. It is the brave and selfless family that can come to this decision. I understand that there are emotional and religious elements involved that might persuade people to 'keep up the fight' but I tend to think that this is self-serving, that some people believe that ANY sign of life is better than none.
I wonder how many people think to themselves 'hmmm...if I HAD to choose between living life in a vegetative state, or being dead...I'd choose vegetative.' Neither one is a pleasant thought, but I know I would rather be dead, than living in a chronic care facility peeing and crapping in my diapers, my muscles in painful contractures, unable to scratch my nose, unable to feed myself, unable to communicate, unable to voice my opinion. I would hope that my family would recall the times I told them that I never wanted to live like that.
Anyway, the problem I have right now, is that everybody from little children, to senior citizens, to priests, to governors of state and lawmakers is involved. I do not respect what her family is doing, making her life a public forum between those who believe in The Right to Life vs. The Right to Die.
Death, in my opinion, is a Rite of Passage, and a part of Life.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Good Friday

It's Good Friday, and I'm at work. I can't really complain, I only work 1 out of 6 weekends, it's just that my weekend happens to fall on a long weekend. Oh well. I woke up very easily this morning, which is unusual, and because i'm not tired, the day has actually started out ok.
I remember this weekend 2 years ago when the city was quarantined due to SARS. Greg and I had a weekend of family dinners planned, and I was stuck at home on quarantine. It was really a bad time. Greg was a doll though and made sure that I had groceries and enough wine to get through the weekend. Other friends were also great, bringing me chocolate bunnies, movies, magazines, and of It almost seemed like every time I got a phone call, someone would be on the other line telling me to open my door, that they'd left something there for me. I was really lucky, and grateful to have such good friends. But, never, ever would I want to relive that frightening time. We spent weeks not really knowing if we were being adequately protected at work. 7 staff members were infected with SARS, and we were all afraid that we'd also catch it. I came home many nights stressed out and crying. I think, for me, the worst day was when the CDC came up from Atlanta to do testing throughout the ICU. They showed up wearing space suits, and the nurses were all standing around staring at each other with our flimsy little N95 masks, safety goggles and yellow gowns. At the time, it felt like doomsday had arrived.
Well, to make a long story short, the 7 staff members all survived, and no one else from work got sick. But honestly, it was such a disaster and a horrible experience. Imagine picking up a deadly disease while you are busy doing your job, trying to save another's life.
Anyway, that is my little memorial to two years ago. Today, work is much better, and things are pretty much back to normal. The government is making hospital cuts again, soon there will be nursing job shortages, and the cycle will start again. Ontario nurses have been working without a contract now for over a year. While we were the front line in taking care of the sick despite our own fear of becoming ill, the government seems to have forgotten, because the crisis no longer exists.

On a completely different note (and much more upbeat!), I'm heading to Vegas, Baby! Our flights and hotel have been booked for the weekend of April 15. Denine, Leah Ann and I have not been on a vacation together since we were 13 at Camp Edgewood, a Lutheran Bible Camp! I am so looking forward to this trip, it'll be a great kickstart to starting the 40th birthday celebrations (never mind that L's and my birthday aren't until June!)
Well, it's 8:35am, and I think I will now tackle my taxes before the first patient comes rolling out the OR.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

So, I'm thinking that there MUST be times when I am just not sane. Re-reading from the other day, I am honestly wondering 'who the hell wrote in MY blog!' because that just simply is not me. Or, at any rate, is not me any more. Not today, anyway.
Today, life is good. Life is actually, pretty great. Winter is melting away, and we hit 6 degrees Celcius today. Last night I went for a 70 minute walk with my neighbour, Dana. (That's 3 extra points worth of food...or a 6 oz glass of wine)
Dana, is probably one of the sweetest, kindest people I have ever met. She uses words like, gosh, darn, swell fellow... geeez is probably the foulest thing that comes out of her mouth. Her boyfriend, Bernard (spoken in a French accent, so it sounds like Bear-nahr) and her have been together for 20 years. She is about, oh, maybe 37. (Actually it is very hard to tell...she is an old soul) Anyway, we walked along and chitchatted about a bunch of things. She mentioned that her sex-life with Bear-nahr was nonexistant, that they were best friends, how kind he was etc. I listened but didn't really know what to say. It was another one of those moments where for some reason people who I don't even know me very well, tell me stuff. I am often amazed at this. is a hard lesson learned. When I was younger, people would tell me secrets, and without even really considering what I was doing, that would be the first thing I would tell the next person I saw. Maybe it was a way (at the time) to feel important. I don't know. Anyway, I am much better at discriminating at what to tell people, these days...and for the most part, I just keep my big mouth shut. So...we were walking along, and I told her that Greg and My sex life hasn't been all fireworks lately either, but that we were working on how to 'fix' things. (Apparently, that made her feel better as we've only been together 2 years and she's made it to 20.) As we were walking we hit a 'Condom Shop', normally, I would probably just keep on walking by, but I thought "Hm...what a great opportunity for a bit of fun, and oh...what the hell...come on Dana, let's buy something to spice things up!" We walk into the shop, and I swear, Dana stood there like a post, not looking right or left! I actually wanted to laugh, but I didn't. I think it was her first time in a store like that. I bought a harmless little magnet with an spin-arrow on it, on Where to Make Love. Dana decided not to part with her money. But, we both enjoyed the walk and the conversation and agreed we would do it again (minus the condom shop, I'm sure!)
OH! That harmless little magnet with the spin-arrow on it, was spun once to humour me (instructions ignored), and now sticks harmlessly on the fridge...

Friday, March 18, 2005

Surprise Engagement Party

Deep down I think (ok, I KNOW) I have an evil streak.
Thursday night there was a surprise engagement party held for Salena. I did not plan this party, rather another one of Sal's friends did. A friend who I don't particularly like. She has this air of superiority around her that pisses me off everytime out paths cross. I have known her for about 10 years, and my first impression of her has never changed. So, she organized this dinner party at a very nice restaurant and asked me for help inviting guests. Well, unfortunately, the people who I suggested were not able to attend, and at the last minute, I invited another person who was very happy to be there. I called L. the night before the dinner and she lets me know that I've basically 'put her out' as she has the dinner placecards already printed out, and if she'd known that so-and-so wasn't coming, she would have invited another couple. And, basically that I shouldn't have invited this other person, but that it was too late now, the table will just have to be uneven. I, of course, let little things like this get to me, and I lost sleep over it. It never occurred to me that it was a formal dinner.
So we get to the restaurant, and she has these hand-printed placecards set out the table. Very nice, but hardly did I put her out by having to handprint one more. The guys were all ticked off that they couldn't sit where they wanted and everybody ended up playing musical placecards sitting where they wanted, not where L. wanted them to. Anyway, she pissed me off again, when she kept referring to Greg as 'Your Boyfriend' (like she didn't know his name) I reminded her.
Then, at the dinner, she called him Scott. Honestly, I know its petty, but I feel like she did this on purpose to insult me. (ok, maybe she was paying me back for years ago when I erroneously called her boyfriend whom she was with that evening by her other bf's name ...she was two-timing) (But! I seriously was very embarrassed about it, and very apologetic)

I don't know exactly what it is about her, she is very subtle, and yet very pointed, and knows where to dig. (or maybe I am just super-sensitive.) At one point she was outside with the guys and they were making little chitchat about their jobs. This is a woman who has been a nurse for 15 yrs, has been working on her psychology degree for years and has just landed a job a month ago working "As an Investigator for the College of Physicians." Now don't get me wrong, she has worked hard to get to where she is, but it was her derogatory comments about nursing that bugged my ass. And...every single woman at the table was a nurse, she had to one-up everybody by calling herself an 'Investigator.' Which she is, but it is that 'Superior Being' quality that I hate. She was hired because she has a medical background, not because she is a super-sleuth.
So, the night went on, and I was stewing. Finally, I couldn't take it anymore. I HAD to get a dig in at her!
I very sweetly turned to her boyfriend and (making sure L. could hear) told him that he and L. have the MOST beautiful baby girl in the world...that she has the most beautiful eyes and absolutely illegal length eyelashes...she looks just like her dad! (Actually, their daughter really is a beauty)
And, I am a bitch. And, a bit ashamed of myself for letting her get to me.
And, I'm sure she doesn't like me much either, and may be pissed off that Salena is only having one person stand up for her at the wedding, and she already asked me. Today, L. sent me pictures of the party, and one was of her and Sal...the caption under the picture was "Best Friends...a beautiful postcard memory at a perfect engagement party."
Hmmpf. It's like we're 5 yr old's pulling each other's hair, not nearly 40 yr old mature women.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Falling off the Roof

Finally! My computer is up and running again, although verrrrry slowwwwly. I need more memory installed. All week long, I have felt like I was missing something and it drove me crazy!
Not much happened this past week that is even of note. I did lose 2.8 lbs at WW. I'm happy about that. Unfortunately, I foresee that this Wednesday the news will not be as good. But, I figure that even if I lose a little bit, I'll still be heading in the right direction. I have GOT to start exercising! I am such a slug...ugh!
I fell off the roof this weekend. (I got my period) Funny, I think Denine started this phrase when we were teenagers, but we still use do most of our mutual friends. Lately, when I fall off the roof, not only is it more physically painful, but mentally it is a painful reminder of what will likely never happen. It was a hard blow to have the fertility specialist tell me that I was peri-menopausal and had less than a 1% chance of getting pregnant, and then, even IF I did somehow manage to miraculously get pregnant, that I would still have a 50% miscarriage rate to deal with. It's taken me 3 months to kinda sorta come to terms with never having my own children. Let's just say, that at this point I'd be happier to not have to deal with that monthly mess at all. When it comes monthly. The more crueler jokes were those cycles that lasted 50 days. I must have used up 10 pregnancy tests trying to convince myself that maybe, just maybe, the next test would show positive...and, of course, it didn't.
So...when all is said and done, I'd just rather stop falling off the roof. Period.

Monday, March 07, 2005

The weekend went well. We got up to Denise's kind of late, around 6pm, too late to visit the trailer. I was sorry about that because I just wanted a little trailer 'fix' to get me through to the spring. We have major repairs to do this year, but hopefully we'll be able to get started on them in early May.
So, the whole Famdamily was there. Kids running around, tv on, Nan talking about her dead friend. I hid in the kitchen, felt safe there. Nan had brought a Magnum of wine for dinner...I was pretty much the only one drinking helped! Actually, she is very sweet. Her and Dennis (AKA Grandpop) finally won the jackpot at the casino. She made a point of asking him to buy a bottle of red for me (I think she likes me! She really, really likes me!) She also gave me her secret Curry Dip recipe last Thanksgiving with the promise that I never, ever pass it on to anyone. I've never actually made this recipe, but I do have it taped onto the inside of my kitchen cupboard door. The last time she was over, I made a point of showing her where I safely store it so it won't get lost, that I treasure it. (That's right, I'm buttering up the Old Girl!) But she was clearly quite chuffed. And, in a way, I am too. I KNOW she doesn't give out this recipe to Just Anyone.
So yes, I shamelessly drank quite a bit of the red stuff on Saturday night. Just enough to get me tipsy. I did count ALL my points and am still ok for the rest of the week, as long as I don't go crazy. It's really a shame that wine doesn't count as a fruit serving.
Greg and I have had a few conversations about kids this past week. One pertained to adoption, and followed the adoption conversation at work. Apparently, it costs $40K to adopt internationally when all is said and done. This includes adoption fees, legal fees, red tape fees, flights, accommodation, time off work. There are two ways to look at this. One is that its really quite expensive and that we don't have the money for this. The other is that it is the price of a luxury car, and for that price we are giving a child the opportunity for a better life. Greg suggested we adopt dogs, which pretty much ended that conversation.
Saturday night, on the drive home, we talked about it again. I said that I thought maybe I was too old afterall to think about having kids. Imagine being 55 and dealing with a teenager. Adriana had her bf Cory over and they were holed up in her bedroom all evening. Brianne, is 12 going on 22 and she is quite frankly, a moody little bitch. I'll give her the benefit of the doubt and call it hormones, but likely she just doesn't have any manners. Honestly, what a headache. I guess you never know how your kid is going to turn out, and everyone wants to think that their kid is a peach. And damn! They are cute when they are little. It's a hard call.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

I love Saturdays! The sun is shining, there is not a cloud in the sky and maybe, just maybe, the snow will melt...forever. I am really getting tired of winter, it's been a really cold one too with lots of snow. We don't usually get this much. We've had so much, that here in the city it never really turned into that grey and slushy mess.
Wed night Derek, Greg and I went to Massey Hall to see Rain, a tribute band to the Beatles they were excellent! I remember going to see Beatlemania when I was MUCH younger (25 yrs ago!!!) Although I am not the biggest Beatles fan, its amazing that I knew every single song they played, and almost all the words (personally, I enjoy making up my own words as I go along) It was a fun night out, and the first time I've been to Massey Hall that I can remember. It is a beautiful building with high vaulted ceilings and stained glass. Lots of history there too. There is a hallway with cases filled with collages of entertainers counting through the decades. In the 1940's Hitlers nephew was there to talk about "What the German's Really Think" In the 60's Bob Marley, Joni Mitchell, in the 70's Donny and Marie, the Jackson 5, in the 80's INXS and so on...I could have spent hours looking at the cases and pictures.
Salena has had a bad week. Poor Robert had to pull over on the side of the highway as he thought he was having a heart attack. An ambulance was called and he was admitted to the hospital yesterday. Last week he had his gallbladder out, and I guess they missed a gallstone in his common bile duct. Well, it blocked the duct and backed up his pancreas so now he is in absolute pain with pancreatitis. To make matters worse, yesterday his dad had open heart surgery so his mom has been at the hospital all alone. In the middle of all this they are moving in together and are expecting appliances to arrive today. Jeff hasn't finished moving out and is not returning Salena's calls. I really kind of feel sorry for her.
Heading to Fergus today to see Denise, hopefully we'll have time to stop by the trailer.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005


Oh My God! Ugh...I KNEW I was up there, but not THAT up there! That means's that I have 30 lbs to lose to get to the upper weight range for my height. That's a lot of poundage. I bought the 12 week plan, I figure that that will bring me close to my 40th birthday and I had better be down 20lbs by then. Easy on the vino, eat for only 1 person, and exercise. I'm looking forward to feeling better in my own skin again, but not looking forward to the work it'll take to get there. But, today was the first step at a time. Salena is also going, and we will be a good support for each other. (I have decided to forgive her for getting engaged before me.) So my plan after the meeting was to go and buy some Running Chews (sneakers) but quite frankly, I didn't feel like spending money on them. Instead, I bought 4 tops from Reitmans which came to $120.00 and beautiful bed linen from Pottery Barn which came to $170.00. Including the $199.00 that I spent on the Weight Watchers membership for 12 weeks, I somehow managed to spend almost $500.00! What am I doing? I don't have $500 to spend like this...but DAMN! if felt good. What is it about Retail Therapy that instantly makes you feel better? In fact, I feel SO good, it's like I lost those 30 lbs already!

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Pulling up the Socks

Whew! I've spent all of this morning trying to get this blog of mine looking good. Thanks to Denine, I think I am getting the hang of it.
I'm working evenings this week, which I really don't mind, it's kind of nice to hang out at home alone just doing my own thing. The downside of it is that Greg and I don't see more than 5 minutes of each other for a few days. He waited up for me last night as there is a winter storm happening here, but literally 2 minutes later he was in bed, asleep. What is it with men who fall asleep BEFORE their head even hits the pillow? When I finally crawled in to bed around 1:30 he was all sweaty and grinding his teeth! Hmph...wonder what HE was dreaming about?! Needless to say, it took me a while to fall asleep! ( least he doesn't snore!)
Work was ok last evening. It was quiet so we girls had some time to talk. And of course, discussion always seems to come around to pregnancy, babies, and children. I'm trying to not be super-sensitive to these topics but invariably someone always turns to me and says 'so when are you and Greg going to get busy and have some babies?' Now I know that people don't mean to be hurtful, but sometimes I just feel like shrinking when I'm asked this. Last night, however, I just said that we are unable to have kids. And nurses being nurses wanted to know why. Well, didn't I have centre stage when I got to tell that I was pre-menopausal and other than egg-donation there was nothing more that could be done. For once, I get to hit one of life's milestones before any of my friends! What a great achievement! Actually, the girls were pretty great about it. The conversation turned to adoption, but you know, to be honest...I'm not so sure that this is a path I want to take. Does that sound terrible? Maybe...but right now, I'm really not sure. I romantically envisioned us having a little red-haired kid with gappy teeth. I stubbornly hang on to that picture in my mind, and have not considered hanging a new picture. It's just one of those things.
What I absolutely DO know is that it is time for me to pull up my socks and make new plans. So, in saying that, my immediate new plan is to start Weight Watchers (for the umpteenth time) and lose these pity-pounds.
1) I do not want to be fat and 40.
2) I want to fit into real clothes again...not just flannel jammie bottoms, yoga pants, and my Big-girl scrub uniforms
3) Health reasons (ok, maybe that should be reason #1)
4) I am in 2 wedding parties later this year...I want to hold my head up high and look fabulous
5) It might inspire Greg to lose weight as well
6) When I look good, I feel good