Wednesday, August 31, 2005

The Prodigal Child Returns

Well, it's been a while but I'll try to keep my post to a minimum.

A couple of weeks ago my Granny had her 3rd heart attack. We didn't think she'd pull through this one but the 'Ol Gal fooled us all and is currently toodling around in her electric wheel chair back at the nursing home. Anyway, the Dr this time gave her a clot busting medication. They also gave her blood thinning medication. Combine those two elements and you get a LOT of bleeding. Any cut will bleed and any bruise will turn into a thing of nightmarish proportions. They had tried to start an IV in the back of her hand, they couldn't get a good vein and then it wouldn't stop bleeding. I stood next to her bed in the ER for over 5 hours and held bandages on her hand to get it to stop. Then when they moved her to ICU they banged it or something and it started all over again. Pissed me off. But, she was only on a ventilator for 2 days this round. I'm not a proponent of those things. But at least this time I talked the family into declining CPR and stuff. The last time she had a heart attack she was "confused" a bit for a few days afterward. This time it's much worse. She sees people and things that aren't there and imagines she can get up and walk around. I had them put a camera in her room at the hospital. That made me feel a little better. I understand that the heart attack has weakened her heart to the point that her brain probably doesn't get the amount of O2 that it needs but it's painful to watch. I keep telling the family that at some point they need to start considering that her quality of life isn't matching up with the hell that her poor little body goes through every time it starts to send her to Jesus and we pull her back. Personally, and I've said it before, I feel that if the only thing standing between me and Jesus is a machine........ TURN THE BLOODY THING OFF!!

After that saga I had a birthday party to put together. My youngest boy turned 10. We had the family over and I cooked Mexican food. That was a fun time and gave us all a chance to relax.

My daughter was recommended for the ACES program in school. I forget what that stands for but it's basically for kids that have excelled in one subject or another and so they give them an opportunity to learn more in that subject. I'm extremely proud of that. She likes school a lot and I hope this will continue to foster that in her. It's supposed to center around some exploration type study. They expressed that it's not the "gifted and talented" classes but hey, what do they know!?!?!?

Yesterday we got to head back to the ER. This time it was for Baby Girl. She fell while riding her bike and cut her chin so we went to see if she needed stitches. She did. 6 stitches and not a single tear. I was so proud of her. I also like the ER Dr. He recognized me when he walked in the door since I've spent so much dang time up there lately. LOL

Cindy and Harley want to come and live with me and I think that's a GREAT idea!! I need someone to help me pay my bills. Since I'm now having to pay so dang much for gasoline I may have to start doing without all the frivolous things in my life. Things like electricity, groceries, and the kid's school lunches will just have to be put on hold for a while. I'm sure the adjustment will be tough on everyone but it just can't be helped. I'm a commuter and drive 80 miles to work and doggonit I use a lot of gas in the course of a week. I'm sure everyone has the same problem I have: Their gas bill is probably as much or more as their truck payment just like me. As a matter of fact, has anyone ever seen the commercial about the man saying things like: I have a new house, I drive a brand new car............ then he's out mowing his yard on his riding lawn mower with a big smile plastered on his face and he's saying: I'm in debt up to my eyeballs, someone help me please. That's ME!! Just without the boobs. I was riding around last weekend on my riding lawnmower cutting the grass so that it doesn't overtake the home and I was thinking of my dire predicament and it made me grin to think that my life had been forever immortalized in a commercial like that. I think I should get some royalties off that or something. Maybe then the kids could keep eating lunch at school every day.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

The house

Here's a new pic of the house. I took it last night so it's a bit shadowy. My yard sure does look good though. i just need some more plants but I don't want to make it look all cluttered and urbanized or anything. I'm still lovin it though.

Pitiful Animal isn't she?

I mean, seriously. She didn't even twitch when I took the picture and the flash went off. She looks like road kill for crying out loud. She's a pathetic beast that's for sure.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Wow @ the weather today

Most people think of Oklahoma and North Texas as tornado alley. I used to live in a trailer house, my parents still do, and to be honest with you: I think it's tornado alley too! Our trailers sit right up next to some woods. Lots of trees. So, I've always comforted myself with the thought that the wind a twister would put off would bounce right off those trees and push the twister AWAY from our mobile type dwellings. Fanciful I know but whatever helps me sleep at night ya know.

Anyway, spring is usually our tornado time and it always makes me nervous. So do the summer storms that kick up. Much like the one we've had this afternoon. It's hot and muggy and the daytime heating is conducive to these types of storms and we expect them this time year. This one was a "tree bender" for sure. Lots of rain, lots of wind, thunder and lightening. I'm in a very large building today. Not a tall one, just a large one. About the size of a Sam's or two put together. It's a "raised floor" area. Meaning that most of the space in this building is dedicated to data centers and the floor floats a few feet above a concrete floor. Between the two floors is where they run a huge amount of wire. There are several companies, BIG companies, that house their servers here. The space is gorgeous as only a geek can attest to. Anyway, the place is built like Ft Knox. But as the storm raged with the clouds and the rain and the wind... the air conditioner kicked on and that bad boy sounded like a freight train! That's incidentally what a tornado sounds like. Why it sounded like this was beyond me because I was here all week last week and all day today and it never sounded like that. It made me check the windows more than once I promise ya.

More of the weekend

The major theme for the rest of my weekend was pretty much: WORK. See, I'm on call. Have been since last Tuesday. So, when my phone gets a page, I get to jump. So far, blessedly, it's been quiet at night. It hasn't always been that way. Also, I had a site in NJ that was swapping out hard drives. They are getting upgrades, so the person on site swaps out the drives but I have to configure the RAID and restore all the data. I got that started on Saturday morning. Then I got some laundry done and kept an eye on my restore. It finished at 7:30 pm but at 9 pm I had to start something else. This time it was defragmenting some email stores. I kicked them off and let them be. Then went to sleep at about 11:30.

Up at 1 am. Why, you may ask? Well that's when our maintenance window is. We can freely reboot servers and do things during that time. This time is was setting up 2 SQL servers to see a newly added disk in a cluster. Anyway, it didn't start off good and it didn't end good either. I messed with it for about 2 hours and my remote software wouldn't work so I had to drive to work. That's an hour drive one way. So I left at 2:45, got down to there and messed with it some more. One could see it but the other one couldn't and I was at the end of my maintenance window. As well as my patience. So, I bailed out on it and went home at about 4:30. I checked on my email defrag and they were finished so I finalized all the settings and went to bed at about 6 am. Woke up a few times as the kids went in and out but otherwise slept until 10:45. I got up and made the attempt to be productive but you just tend to drag all day after one of those. I did eventually get out and mow all the yards. Thank God for riding lawnmowers!

I accidentally fell asleep at about 4:30 and woke up at 6 pm and so it was hard to fall asleep last night. Plus I sleep on the couch when I'm on call to keep the phone from waking up the Mr since he has to get up and go to work early too. Nice I know. I do try. Sometimes.

So, today I'm kind of bleary eyed. However, this is my last night to technically be the primary person on call. Tomorrow I start being secondary for a week but that just means that my primary has to answer the pages in a timely manner or then I get paged. Luckily, I'm secondary to someone who flawlessly does his job.


If you've ever BEEN to an IKEA you're either addicted to it or just in denial about being addicted to it. I'm sure everyone remembers my story about going there in January. Well OK, maybe you don't. Read the link at your leisure.

Anyway, they finally opened the one here in Frisco last Wednesday. They were giving away $2500 in IKEA gift cards to the first person in line as well as one of their PAONG chairs. So, some lady (No! It wasn't ME) showed up 10 days early. They gave her the chair on her first night so that she'd have something to sleep in. This lady has several kids so I guess she could use the furniture but DANG! I couldn't do it.

Anyway, up early on Friday, load up the kids, pick up grandma and away we go. An hour and a half later we are waltzing through the store. I like that place. I definitely will make it habit to go back. My youngest boy didn't go with us the last time but he went this time and loved it too. He and the other two were trying things out, hopping from one show room to another and creating their own shopping lists in their cute, little, no-money-having heads. They are sweet to go ahead and get started on their Christmas lists aren't they? :)

Their lunches aren't any good though. They have a cafeteria type thing in there and the kids were hungry so we stepped on in. They have a desert counter with 2 choices, some Daim Torte thing (whatever that is) and an apple cake (which I wouldn't touch for nuthin). Then there is the lunch stations. There are 3 of them but they all have the exact same thing: swedish meatballs, something red ( I have no idea what it was), fries, new potatoes boiled, and some mac N cheese. I DID try the meatballs. Honestly, I took a bite. Thought I was gonna spit on the floor and have to clean up a mess but I did try it at least. They were nasty. The Oldest boy loved them though. Oh, and they had a salad bar of which I didn't touch either. The rolls were hard as bricks. So, next time, we eat out!

Then it was back to shopping. I spent considerably less than last time. We have school clothes to buy ya know. So, it was off to Stonebriar mall. That place is huge too. Bought the kids 2 pairs of pants each and tops to match. Well, not Oldest, he can't seem to find pants he wants. He's bound and determined that he wants shorts. I can understand where he's coming from because he wore shorts almost all year last year. Even when it was cold outside. He would just wear a sweat jacket and a coat. However, as his mother and self appointed stick-in-the-mud in the house I have to at least make the attempt to push him in the direction of pants. I'm still trying.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

I'm a little slow but here it is..

OK, when Skillzy said I was "tagged" heck I thought he was talking about the fact that he'd been to my blog and read for the week so it was my turn to go to HIS and read posts. I was going to reply to his little "tag" that for his information I read his blog quite often, thank you very much. However, I decided to not respond, he's a little crazy after all and why stir the pot.

Then I realized I'm slow. See, I was reading Terry's blog this morning and noticed that he'd been "tagged" with a literary thing and that's when my little pea brain remember Skillzy getting tagged about some song list or another. So I rushed as quickly as my work related internet connection would carry me and, sure enough, he tagged me for the song list and here I've been ignoring it. So, here's the question and the answer:

list ten songs that you are currently digging … it doesn’t matter what genre they are from, whether they have words, or even if they’re no good, but they must be songs you’re really enjoying right now. Post these instructions, the artists, and the ten songs in your blog. Then tag five other people to see what they’re listening to.

1. Gotta be something more - by Sugarland
2. Texas - By King George Strait himself
3. Bless the Broken Road - Rascal Flatts
4. Fast Cars and Freedom - Rascal Flatts
5. Picking Wild Flowers - Keith Anderson
6. Save a Horse Ride a Cowboy - Big n Rich
7. Redneck Woman - Grechen Wilson
8. Making Memories of Us - Keith Urben
9. Babygirl - Sugarland
10. I Didn't I Swear - West Of Nowhere

My choices are all Country because, of course, that's all I listen to. I like the strong vocals of some of them like the Sugarland songs and teh Rascal Flatts songs because I can sing along with them in the truck and they aren't so high pitched that I can't keep up. I like the funky beats and lyrics to the Keith Anderson, Grechen Wilson and Big N Rich songs. Keith Urban's is just good all the way around and isn't he just the sexiest thing on 2 feet?!!? West Of Nowhere is a new band, well new to the radio world, one of them is a friend of mine and I hope they make it big. They just released their fist album this year and they are getting some exposure but the bigger markets won't play them until they get on the charts. But how are they supposed to get on the charts if people can't hear their music because they aren't being played on the radio?!!? All that sounds kind of stupid to me. But whatever.

Anyway, I don't know enough bloggers to throw this question at but if I think of some that haven't been hit already I'll push it in their direction.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

How 'bout them astronauts!!

I'll say it again. WOW! Steve Robinson's space walk this morning was just amazing. I bet they're going to put the pictures he's been taking into a book and make millions. He pulled the gap fillers out like there was nothing to it. Seeing him hanging out on the end of that robotic arm, positioned below the orbiter like he was is a sight I'll never forget. I'm glad NASA is broadcasting this out so I can watch it in full instead of just picking up the highlights on the news. Forget government funding..... they need to put this out on DVD and sell copies!! They'd make a mint!

Steve Robinson is pretty funny too. I was waiting for him to break out in song... "I'm walkin on sunshine, whooooaaaaaaaaoooooooooo, I'm walking on sunshine, whooooooooaaaaaaaaaooooooo and don't feel good! Alright now, yeah don't it feel good!"

Seriously though, that had to be an awesome experience for Steve Robinson. Can you imagine having your feet tied down to a robotic arm, swinging out around the Discovery space shuttle, that far above the earth, with the emenseness of space all around you? I just wanted to clap my hands and squeal in delight for the rush I got just watching it. If I was a squealing type person that is. So I couldn't even manage to harness the feeling of what HE must've had going on even in my imagination.

It makes you proud to be an American to be watching this. Our guys are doing an excellent job of handling the procedures and the pressure that this mission must've placed on them. What an accomplishment! Thanks to NASA for sharing this with the rest of us.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Another busy, busy weekend

This weekend was just cram packed with all kinds of work and "get r done's". Thursday night wasn't so productive though. I walked in the door from the garage, set my purse and laptop bag on the floor outside my bedroom door, walked over to my bed and crawled up on the end of it and lay face down. I kicked off my shoes and promptly fell asleep. The Mr woke me up at 9:30 so HE could lay down. I went and told the kids that bedtime was at 10 pm, be sure to brush, and I went back to bed and fell back to sleep without any problem at all. I woke up at 8:30 Friday morning. About 13 and 1/2 hours of sleep will do a girl wonders!

Up on Friday and out to mow. I love my yard. Some people may not like to mow the yard but (so far anyway) I'm enjoying it. I'd hate it if my riding lawn mower crapped out but, for now, we're gettin along just fine. I just putter around the yard soaking up the sunshine. If I wait 2 weeks between mowing it's a pain because the grass clogs up the mowing deck and I have to stop it every now and then, raise up the guard and yank out the clumps of grass. But, if I mow every week there's no problem at all. So, Friday I managed to get the back yard mowed and about 4 trips around the front yard before my nail appt at 1.

Hopped in the shower, cleaned off the sweat and grass, put on something comfy and the kids and I headed to see my favorite neighborhood nail lady. She's been doing my nails for about 4 years now I s'pose. I don't put tips on my nails. They irritate me and she only puts them on if I break one off completely and she doesn't want me to look funny by having one nail shorter than the others. So, she just puts acrylic over my real nails so I won't break them as often. Then it was off to Wal-Mart where I bought a few groceries, a few school clothes and a few school supplies. A little here and there and I should be ready by the time school starts on the 15th.

I don't really remember what I did Friday evening though. But, up on Saturday and headed to the tire place where I had them put on 2 new tires and align the front end so that I don't shimmy and shake every time I get up to 70 mph. That's a pain. While they were doing that my mom came and picked us up and we went to lunch at my favorite mexican food place. That's good eatin. Back, picked up the truck and headed home where I finished mowing the front yard and both side yards. I also mowed down the edge of part of the driveway. However, I believe I've realized that my enthusiasm for a pretty yard, and to not have the tall weeds and grass rub down the side of my truck when I'm driving down the driveway, has instilled in me my so far avoided case of poison ivy for the year. I'm highly allergic. If a leaf of that stuff just looks my way I'm covered from head to toe for 3 weeks and have to have a shot and a pill packet. I discovered my rash at about 7 am this morning and have already called the Dr's office to have them call in my pill packet. I get this every year, they're used to it.

Saturday night I had a hard time falling asleep. I'm not sure why, I just couldn't seem to nod off. I was sleepy, but it was allusive. So, I set my alarm for 7:30 because I just knew by 1 am that I might have trouble waking up. Sunday morning I woke up at the alarmed time but continued to lay there until 8:30. Then I got up, put a bookcase together and positioned it in the office to get the printers off the floor, went to my mom's to pick up my mail, went to Lowe's to get some mulch, came home and mulched the front flower bed so that it isn't half planted with plants and half planted with black weed barrier, then set out to put my birthday present together.

I've never drank so much water in all my life. I was putting together a metal framed gazebo with mosquito netting around it. And I did it all by myself. How, you may wonder, did little 'ol me get all 4 corners put together, then get the top frame on top of the cornered frame and then get the canvas and netting over it all? Verrrrrrrrrrrrrry carefully, that's how. Add to that a step ladder and a folding ladder and some well written instructions and several trips into the house for ice water. Whew!! It was slightly warm outside and all that's hard work. But triumph I did!! And it's a beautiful thing if I do say so myself. Me and Youngest boy were sitting out in it last night. I'd put 2 of my round lantern patio lights in there and we were zipped in from the bugs, a cool breeze was blowing and life was gooooooooooood. We may camp out on the patio this weekend. I think that'd be cool.

After gazebo building was done I had a chocolate ice cream cone and a Totino's pizza after I vegged out on the bed after my cooling shower. That managed to lower my body temp by several degrees. Then I helped baby girl make a mac 'n cheese masterpiece with her Real Meal Easy Bake Oven. Yick! Nasty lookin stuff I tell you. Then made the kids pick up all their stuff, take a bath and I was in bed by 10 pm. Again, at 12:30 I was laying there wondering WHY I couldn't go to sleep! I was exhausted, I was sleepy, the AC was blowing and feeling good. So I'm still bumfuzzled as to why I couldn't sleep. Therefore, when I woke up at 3:30 this morning, 10 minutes before the alarm went off, I was cussin. I need another 13 and 1/2 hour night of sleep!!