Sunday, October 30, 2011

Camping Memories

When I wrote my post yesterday about Grandma and Grandpa's RV, Merikay talked about trips with her Dad. It made me think about trips with my parents when I was little. While they traveled all over the world during the summers, they also took all of us kids on camping trips. My sister didn't care much for them, my brother was to little to care much either way, and I was the curious one.



I have a bunch of jumbled memories of camping. Having mom make pancakes on the Coleman stove while freezing in the cold morning before the sun finally warmed things up. Getting dressed in the sleeping bag because it was too darn cold to get out. Whacking my head on the top of the RV because I forgot my sister and I were sleeping in the bed over the cab. Cooking marshmallows in the campfire to make smores. Hiking trails to find animal prints. Wearing a sweatshirt with the face of Buffy from the TV show "Family Affair", remember the show anyone? Smashing my finger while making a fire ring and ending up in the ER to fix it. (Remember, I am the one who always exceeded the medical deductions for the year for my parents) Hearing my mom grumble because every mosquito within a hundred miles would zoom in to find her. They loved her and gobbled her up.


Sometimes my parents would sign my sister and I up for summer camps. My sister and I were in heaven because we fought like cats and dogs and in the camps we were separated in different groups and hardly saw each other. The only time I was jealous was when I saw that the older group got to ride horses on the beach and I didn't. The camps were fun though even at that age I thought the songs they sang every night were corny. All in all it was fun for a few years until we both got to the age that we decided we were too old to do silly stuff. By then we moved to San Clemente and had the beach down the street from our rental house. Walking a couple blocks to the beach and thrifty's drug store for 15 cent ice cream everyday beat any camp. Every morning we would scour the house, laundry, and couch for loose change so we could get ice cream. When we got our allowance we would head to the 5 and Dime Store. Yep, those were the good old days before things really changed.




Saturday, October 29, 2011

Grandma & Grandpa's RV

Mom and I were talking friday night catching up on things. We hadn't talked for a week and caught up with everything that was happening in our lives. Towards the end of our conversation she mentioned that one of her neighbors was fixing up an RV to sell. He is a mechanic at a local dealership and picked up one and was working on it. She had been talking to him about it and asked him what he was looking to sell it for. She told me the price. It was a pretty good price. I asked more about it and then after that we ended our call.




After I hung up I got curious and got on the computer and started searching for pictures of the RV. I didn't know what year the RV was but based on the price figured it was an older model. He was working on a Chinook. While searching for pictures I came across pictures of an old Toyota RV that was just like the one my grandparents drove. These two pictures that I found on the internet are like the two that they had.


My dad's parents traveled all the time to different places. Their love was fishing. They loved to fish for trout and went to all the best places to fish. They even had their special bait recipe for it. Marshmallow with fake salmon eggs. That thing was tiny but they loved it. The first one was totalled in a rollover accident. They don't remember what happened and thankfully walked away with only concussions and bruises. Despite the accident they immediately went out and bought another one to go on the road again. Many years were spent on the road in the RV with another couple named Noble and Verda, who also had one, fishing in lakes and rivers all over the country. They weren't full timers but darn close to it.


When I was little they took me fishing a few times but I didn't like it because I could never sit still long enough to be patient and wait for the fish to bite. The last time I caught a fish was when I left my pole sitting on the back of a house boat while inside playing yatzee. I would go back once in a while to check my pole. Late that night I looked out the back sliding glass door and saw my pole slam to the side. I ran out with out thinking and grabbed the pole. Now you need to understand that I was huge and 9 months pregnant at the time. I started reeling in that pole paying careful attention to keep my line away from the boat props. Meanwhile I am yelling over the generator for everyone inside to let them know that I actually caught a fish. That sucker felt like he weighed a hundred pounds and I didn't want to loose him. After what felt like years they wondered where I was and wandered outside. When they realized what was happening they tried to take the pole away from me. "Don't you dare touch that pole. It is mine.!!" I worked hard and reeled in a 5 pound white catfish. He was funny looking. I was so proud of myself for not loosing him and decided that it would be the last fish I ever caught.


Oh, so you know, he didn't taste very good.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Ambulance Charges

This morning I was reading a post from blogger,Life under the Lights, and was shocked at the article he was referring to but not surprised. Click on his name to read further. I have been hit with bills before and had a heart attack. One time Max was transported to the hospital by ambulance. Months later I got a bill to the tune of $1005. After I finally got my heart and brain working again I called them up and hollered that I gave them my insurance information. They said that was my bill after the insurance paid. Huh!

Many phone calls later I found out my insurance pays only $400 towards ambulance rides and that was the bill of the left over amount. So I had to make the dreaded phone call to my ex and ask to have his medical insurance jump into the fray to help with expenses. I couldn't believe that my insurance didn't cover hardly any of that. That was the first hit. The fire department called a month later asking for $325 for a service fee for coming out to the house since we are in a county island and not covered by the city. Aw crap. Luckily after asking to speak to the supervisor he realized where I lived and that my apartment complex had coverage for fire services and that they shouldn't have called me. Whew! Saved by that one.

Months later Max had an accident at his high school and they wanted to take him by ambulance to the hospital for a burn injury. I flatly refused and said I would transport him, thinking about that dang huge bill I would get. The firefighters argued with me but I said that I didn't want to pay a huge ambulance bill again. They said that since the accident happened on school property that they would be responsible. I laughed and said with the school district being broke that would be an impossible and long process. I told them I worked at a hospital, was an EMT, it was non-life threatening, and would be taking him to my hospital as soon as we left the school. They were satisfied with that. And yes, I signed a refusal of care form.

As for the article he wrote I agree with what he said. If you refuse care from the fire service you must sign a refusal of care, we make you do that every time, and please do to make our lives easier. If the ambulance service makes you sign one, and you didn't call them, DON'T SIGN IT. I know from working with the fire service that you don't have to sign theirs of you didn't call them because they are a private service. Just like you don't have to talk to those dang reporters. You do have the right to ask questions so ask away before signing anything.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Working consumes time in my life.

As you all have noticed by now that there are times that I don't post anything for a while. I work at a hospital on overnight shift. I have a weird schedule. I work 7 days straight then have 7 days off. When I do work it is a 11 hour shift, or more sometimes, so I basically work, eat, and sleep on those days. Some days I get a chance to get on the computer when I get home and post something. Some days when I get home I can barely see straight and just say hi to the cat and crash on my bed, if I even make it that far. I can't tell you how many times I have woken up still sitting on the couch with the computer on my lap and TV playing the music channel in the background.


The 7 days off used to be nice for getting overtime shifts for extra money but that is a thing of history since there is no more overtime allowed with today's economy. It works out nice for travel, recuperating from getting my butt kicked at work, getting things done at home since I am too tired to do it when I am working, or just sitting at home and vegging on the couch.


It can't tell you how many stories I could write about on here that I see at work but refuse to. I do write about some old stuff but not current stuff. Privacy issues blah blah blah.....It is hard to explain what I do but let's just say I am the only person that does what I do in the WHOLE hospital and that keeps me mighty busy the entire night. So I am pretty tired by morning. The winter season is our busiest time of the year and I am dreading it. With the medical issues I am having it is even harder for me this year and more challenging.


Right now I am on my off week and loving it. I got a chance to actually sleep. The last 4 days of my shift I kept getting woken up by phone calls by various people, insurance, doctors office, problems, and so on. Trying to go back to sleep after the aggravation of those phone calls is useless.


I follow many blogs and love hearing about their travels and look forward to the day that I can retire and do the same. Wish I could retire right now. With the medical problems I am having, my future in my career is in jeopardy because I am having trouble giving them 100%. I was raised with strong work ethics and don't call off sick unless I am dying. I have been looking into what options I have if the specialists can't fix what is wrong. Sucks but I have always been a realist and a planner. I always have to have 3 options figured out ahead of time if something goes wrong because with my life something always goes wrong.

Where do you think I came up with the name of the blog? Don't worry. I am used to it and like my mom said to me one time, it sure makes life interesting.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Football season in our family

Football Season is here and the kids are in heaven. All four of them are football fanatics. They get it from their father. I don't care for it much. I have a team but not an avid watcher, except for when my team made it to the Super Bowl. Then I was glued to that TV cheering, screaming, and yelling.

How each of the kids picked their team started back in 1995 or so. Zeke and Max were 6 and 4. They would be glued to the TV with their father every weekend watching the games and cheering. I made a simple comment from the kitchen that they couldn't just root for every team. That led to the statement of why not? I continued to cook and left their father to explain the intricacies of that one. After a while their father agreed that they needed to pick their own team. The rule was that they needed to pick a team other than their fathers team, Atlanta Falcons.


What I didn't expect was they called from the living room that I needed to pick a team. I didn't have one.  "I don't know. You go ahead first and let me think about it." They said no, that I had to pick one and they decided I was to go first. I didn't know who to pick. Then I thought where is a good place. I used to live in Arizona and my sister still lives there. Okay, that is a good place. "Whoever is in Arizona." Silence...... "Did you hear me guys." I walked into the living room to a set of disgusted faces and a statement of you are going to never win with that team. "I don't care. That is the team I pick." I have stayed with the Arizona Cardinals since then and after years was finally rewarded when they made it to the Super Bowl. To bad that I lived so close to the stadium at the time and couldn't afford tickets to see them play.



Zeke the oldest went next. He quickly picked the 49'ers. We lived in the San Francisco bay area at the time so it was obvious with 49'ers advertising everywhere that he chose that team.







Max was cute in who he picked. Back then the teams had different uniforms then they do now. Max's favorite color at the time was orange. He thought about it for a while then said "I want Tampa Bay." We all looked at him and asked him why? "Because they have orange uniforms and I like orange." The logic of a 4 year old.







Morgan was born soon after that. I picked up some clothes from the local thrift store and was given some clothes from friends since we were dirt poor at the time. One of them was a cute Green Bay Packer Onesie. Not sure which place it came from. The boys saw that and instantly decided that his team would be Green Bay. Here he was not even a month old and already had a team.





Nicole was the hardest. Right away after she was born Zeke, Max, and their dad argued with me over her team. Since she was born in September they deemed that she needed a team right away and we didn't agree on a team for her. Since she was a girl I decided I had veto rights over all the boys choices. Round and round we went. I suggested the panthers and the looks from them was of stunned horror. "You can't do that to her. They never win. They suck. You have to give her a better team." On and on it went. The three of them went round and round till I got the perfect team. "Okay, I have it. The Vikings." They looked at me confused. "Listen to my logic here. She is a girl, they have purple in their uniform, and blond hair like her. Besides, Max picked a team based on his favorite color orange. So why not pick a team based on purple and blond hair?" They grudgingly agreed.


The football craze still lives on with Morgan playing varsity football at his high school and Nicole working as a watergirl. When she told me she was working as a watergirl the first thing I thought of was the movie Waterboy. They are both loving it and travel often since they live in a small town and there is only a few teams locally to play against. I wanted to take them to a local NFL game on New Years Day when they visit but was horrified at the sticker shock. Those tickets are expensive. Guess it will be the good old boob tube, munchies, and sodas for them like old times.


Saturday, October 15, 2011

Occupy Phoenix

I have never wrote anything on here regarding my political beliefs and many bloggers don't because they don't want to start a comment war. With the recent events regarding the protest Occupy Wall Street movement crossing the country and starting here in phoenix it is hard to ignore.


I hate politics. It is hard to believe in the system anymore when it has turned into a money machine influenced by lobbyists with deep pockets bartering for votes behind the scenes. Not to mention the ridiculous amounts of money the government spends unregulated. Lifetime salaries and benefits for appointed positions. Taxes and social security out of control. I believe the entire system needs a major wake up call and overhaul. Will it happen because of the protests? Not likely. To many hands in the pie to keep the changes from happening.

I was asked if I would participate in the march yesterday and today. I debated on it but even if I wanted to physically I can't. I can't walk for long periods without major pain so marching is out of the question. Would I want to. If it would really help in making the government wake up and make changes, then I would be there even if I had to rent one of those motorized scooters that you see those older folks zipping around in. Also since it is billed as a peaceful protest, which I believe in non-violence, is another plus. Violence would only detract from the message they are trying to get across.

Opposition against the protest

I wish all the people luck in their search for changes and maybe something will happen.

Friday, October 14, 2011

My Insurance is giving medical advice!

With everything going on my insurance has assigned me a case worker. I discovered that yesterday when I got a call and she introduced herself and what she was calling me about. She said that she was to be my case worker and would be handling all my insurance claims and needs from now on. I had one once before but that was when I was on short term disability when I had surgery. I think because I requested a referral to a specialist outside of the insurance network they want to control the money going out of their pocket by assigning somebody to keep an eye on me.

I have to say she was nice but they asked me to go see somebody else while waiting to see the specialist. I grudgingly agreed to make them happy. I don't know what good this other person is going to do me other than waste my time and their money but if that is going to make them happy and let me see my guy then whatever.

The other person they want me to see is a spine and sports injury specialist. What the heck!!!!! I am having problems from surgery guys! Another bright example of what is wrong with HMO's.


Thursday, October 13, 2011

Want to see a specialist. Expect to wait, and wait, and wait.

I finally got the insurance to okay the referral to the specialist. They needed to do their political mumbo jumbo decision making deal before deciding to let me see the guy. I got the call from the office of the specialist and she went over the information and I was excited because I have been waiting forever just to book an appointment. I was warned that it would be a bit of a wait to see him but I didn't expect to hear what she had to say.

"Well we have appointments starting in March."

"Excuse me. What was that you said?"

"March. Actually let me check something...I have one opening for January."

"January. Are you kidding me. I can't wait that long."

"Well, it is better than March."

"Okay. You have a point. I'll take the earliest opening you have.

I got two appointments. First one is the end of January for a bunch of testing. The second one is the beginning of February with the specialist to go over the test results and come up with the treatment plan. I don't know how I am going to get through the next few months. I was warned about the wait but I didn't expect this long of a wait. I am now seriously considering contacting my current provider for pain meds. I haven't been on any so far and have just been toughing it out but I don't think my sanity can last 3 more months.

Guess this is what I get for seeing a guy that is the best in the state. A very long wait. Ugh!!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Japan offering free flights.


Early this morning I was roaming through the web when I found this article, JAPAN. I thought about how many people would respond to the offer.


Would I do it. Heck Yeah!!!! One of the biggest expense traveling there is the plane tickets and it would be a chance to get a stamp in my empty passport. I love to travel and have always wanted to go see another country. If I had a chance to go it would probably end up being during the time Max is not there since he is slated to be sent from Okinawa to Afghanistan again sometime in February. But he has told me so much about the area that I would love to see it. Granted I wouldn't jump for any sightseeing tours of the nuclear reactor.




I noticed that they are looking for bloggers who will post about their travels there. Probably means someone who has tons of followers so that pretty much cancels me out. Doesn't matter. If they do end up doing the promotion it is a great way for someone, who does not have unlimited resources, to go experience it.


Would you go?


Monday, October 10, 2011

Blog Post Generator

I am suffering a case of writers block. I have been working the last several nights at work and haven't had much to write about. I am sitting here stumped. So I pull up google and write Blog post ideas to see what tickles my brain. Then I saw it. This, Blog Post Generator, ah hah.

First thing I get when I click on it is "I love Barbara Streisand". I don't think so. Anyone who knows me would know that I was lying though my arse about that post.

Next please, "9 things I like about Paul Giamatti" Who the heck is Paul Giamatti? Maybe I need to get out more.

Next! "8 things I hate that go bump in the night." Uh, I have been single way to long and nothing that goes bump in the night scares me.

Next! "I wanted to learn more about Club Soda." Huh!!!! This sounds like a story that is headed towards disaster.

Next! "6 things I like about Pudding." Aw man. That one would suck! I love pudding and I can't have it now. That would be the worst thing to write about. I would be drooling like an idiot by the end of it.

Next! "I just can't deal with X" I would classify this as one dangerous subject because the first thing I thought of was someone writing about not being able to deal with a certain person. If word ever got back to that person life would become very uncomfortable.

Next! "4 things I like about Julia Roberts" Okay, I can do this one!

1. I love her in "Pretty Woman." What better movie than a rags to riches movie. Plus the chemistry between her and Richard Gere was amazing.

2. She is just as real in person and is an advocate in environmental issues.

3. She loves doing crafts and knits sweaters.

4. She can swear as well as any military guy. hehehehe

There, I guess that post generator works after all.

Have a great day everyone.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

100th Post


I never believed I could come up with enough stuff to write 100 posts. Much less have 21 one followers so far. I extend a heartfelt thank you to each and every one of you for following my stories and for all of your comments and support.


How do you celebrate such a milestone......


This way?


Nah!!!!!!!!


This way????


Nope...


This way??????



Not really.



Maybe just this.....




...................jumping for joy at the accomplishment.



Just a simple thanks to you all for listening to my rants, raves, laughter, joy, sadness, and reflections. It has been a crazy year since I started my blog on October 20th. Wonder what the next 100 posts will bring?


Friday, October 7, 2011

Getting burned doing a favor.

I thought I had an okay night at work. It is rough dealing with the constant pain and still working while waiting for my insurance to make up it's mind on my referral to the specialist. Well the night shift ended this morning with a bang. And not a good one.

A while back I did a favor for someone and bent the rules a little bit. It was after a bit of arguing back and forth I agreed to do it that one time. I told that person that it would be the one and only time.

This morning my supervisor and manger called me into their office and said to close the door. I joked "Am I in trouble?" They said a little bit. My heart started beating double time. They asked me about doing a favor a while ago. It had been so long ago it took me a while to remember all the details. When I finally did I explained the situation and why I did what I did. I also explained why it was the ONE and ONLY time I had ever done it. They explained that that person had sent a complaint about me bending the rules.

Now I am puzzled as to why that un-named person did that. I did him a favor and was trying to help him and he stabbed me in the back. It is not like I do it all the time and it was after much arguing that I finally agreed to do it. Goes to show what doing a favor will get you. I commented that I am not going to be nice to him and give him a talking to but I was warned to be nice and keep my mouth shut. Sucks that I have to take my punishment and can't fight back.

Sure is going to be hard to be quiet when I see him again.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

My little girl.


My youngest and only girl, Nicole just turned 14. I can't believe how much she has grown. The kids are growing up way to fast. It seemed like yesterday when I was sitting in a hospital bed with my first son in my arms. My how time flies.


A friend just discovered she is pregnant, not planned, with twins and it got me thinking about my pregnancy with Nicole. My daughter was an ooopsie. She was a waaaayyyy biggg oooopsie. I had been having problems and the doc said it was just hormones. We were insured with Kaiser at the time and so I didn't have a regular doc. The next time I went to see a doc was months later, which was a different one, I told him I was still having issues. We went thru the same questions and he decided to run some lab work.

He came back and sat down with a smile "Well, the good news is that you are pregnant."

"What!!!! Oh crap. Okay."

"Ok, lets check and see what is going on and how far along you are."

"Well I have good news and bad news."

What is he talking about now? "Okay, what is it."

"Good news is your pregnant and already 4 1/2 months along. So your halfway done. Bad news is that you need to be on bed rest."

"WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What do you mean bed rest. 4 1/2 months along. But. But. But I have 3 boys running amok at home. I. but. I. Huh. Bed. No. I can't. How did this happen?"

"I don't know. Mistakes happen and somehow you tested negative when you were last seen. Now we need to send you down immediately for an ultrasound to see how the baby is and see what is causing your problems."


I went for the ultrasound and when she asked if I wanted to know the sex of the baby I thought for a moment and decided yes. For all three of the boys I never knew what they were until the day they were born. Because of the conversation with the doc and his warning that I may not go to full term with the pregnancy based on the symptoms I had I wanted to know what it was. She said it was a girl and I asked her 3 times to make sure. I didn't believe it since I had 3 boys and had always wanted a little girl. Plus my sis had been told her baby was a girl and was surprised in the delivery room to see a boy.


Back in the doc's office again we went over the results of the ultrasound and it was worse than he expected. It was going to be in a battle to stay pregnant. He was surprised that I hadn't miscarried or hemorrhaged already. I left the office in a daze and was wondering how I was going to break the news to my then husband. Needless to say he wasn't very happy. The bed rest was torture. Back then we didn't have internet. Just books, VHS movies, and TV. If you want to drive a person insane that is one way to do it. I hated it but knew it was needed. We lived almost an hour away from the hospital and doctors office and I spent tons of time driving back and forth for frequent ultrasounds and checkups to make sure she was okay. We scheduled for her to be delivered on Sept. 6th. I could have had her on my birthday a few days later but I wanted her to have her own birthday. She was delivered cold turkey with no drugs, not by my choice, since she came so quickly after they started induction. That was pure hell and I give kudos to any woman who does it.

She was one hard earned bundle of joy.
Nicole on the Right




Monday, October 3, 2011

The beginning of every month.


The beginning of every month. The sacred ritual we all endure with agony. I will say I think this time is called %$##  $#%$ &*#@ time, uh, lemme just say I dislike this time.

I sat down with my computer and paperwork and a tall glass of herbal iced tea. I am bummed that I can't have my trusty diet pepsi but that has been banned from my diet. I log into my bank account and smile at the sweet balance that is sitting in there all nice and purty.

Bill #1 done

Ding......

Bill #2 done

Ding......

Gawd, you would think with how much I pay for this insurance every month I would get free doctors visits.

Bill #3 done

Ding......

Geeeze this balance sure is going down quick.......

Bill #4 done

Ding......

Dang I had better work on getting my electric bill lower this month.

Bill #5 done

Ding......

Oh, gotta send sis an email about that text messaging billing scam. At least I got a credit on this bill for it.

Bill #6 done

Ding.....

Last bill done for the month

Ding......

Aw geeze.... That balance sure doesn't look purty anymore..... Guess that new car is going to have to wait for another month.....

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Food and Diet Restrictions.


blakesbakeshop.com


Have you ever been really,really sick with the flu. You are lying on the couch dying of nausea and wishing someone would shoot you to put you out of your misery. You watch TV to take your mind off your misery and EVERY dang commercial is related to food!!!!!
Been there and done that.





I am on a restricted diet to manage my symptoms from the surgery until I can get things fixed. Temptation is around everywhere. Well I can tell you it is not fun! I met my sis today for lunch at the Corner Bakery Cafe. When we were ordering the young lady taking our order was asking if I wanted any dessert. I was standing there trying to avoid looking at all the goodies because it was on my No-No list. I was good and didn't have anything but it sucks sometimes. I am a total sugaraholic and they had some stuff that I love. Nope, not worth the misery.

My list of No-No's is long and it is a pain to eat and be creative on what I can have without getting burned out on the same things over and over again. With my busy schedule at work I don't have time to cook complicated meals. I stick with simple, easy, throw a couple of things together meals. Worst comes to worst I nuke a healthy choice meal. Yeah, yeah I can hear some of you out there hollering about the sodium loaded in those. Some of the usual choices have gone out the window and I am searching the internet for different ideas. Most of them are expensive, time consuming to prepare, or just plain weird.

I can now understand how hard it is for someone to avoid temptation when it is around you everywhere. Not to mention the willpower to say no. It has to be ten times as hard for someone with an addiction. Falling off the wagon for them is totally different than for me. I just get pain and misery.

The only side benefit so far has been the weight loss. No, I am not trying to lose weight but it has been coming off. It is okay so far but I will be getting chewed out by my doctor and my family if it starts getting in the ridiculous range. Don't worry, I have a my love handles to work through before it gets to that.


Catandgirl.com