Tuesday, July 7, 2015

And So She Goes...

So I've been working on knitting stuff, and giving my kids jobs to do stuff and trying to not be depressed stuff.

I mostly feel like I'm nothing.  I miss everyone and no one misses me.  I am nobody.

I am never ever ever going to find a job here (You can sing that to Taylor Swift if you want.  It all amounts to the same).  10% of the population here have Bachelors degrees.  4% have Masters degrees.  Who the hell is going to hire me?

I am tired of bugs. Especially ticks.

I am tired of rude people.  Everywhere I go.  I try to so hard to be friendly, and I'll be lucky if I can get a grunt out of some people.

I'm tired of not being able to find the IGA on the other side of town.  I hate not knowing where I am going.  I know it's not a big city, and I know I'll get it eventually, and I'm sure other people have had to get used to be areas, but it's hard on me.

I'm really tired of not having anywhere to go for craft stuff but Walmart.  I hate Walmart.

I'm just tired.  Worn out.  Feeling pretty hopeless.  Worried about my kids going to school here.

So back to knitting and book posts tomorrow.  For right now at 12am, this is what I have for anyone who bothers to read.  I just had to write it down somewhere.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Book Review: The Real Doctor will See You Shortly

Disclaimer:  I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review.

I recently received the book The Real Doctor Will See You Shortly by Matt McCarthy to write a review about.  Honestly, the book was very well written and interesting enough that I read it in 2 days.  It was humorous at times, happy at times, and it kind of scared the crap out of me seeing what med students go through.  You hear about it, but you rarely hear the whole story that McCarthy lays out in this book.

The book goes through McCarthy's year as an intern as he learns the ropes of being a doctor.  There's supervision for some things, and some they just throw you in and expect you to figure it out.  It made me think about 2 things:  My husband was recently in the hospital with extremely high blood pressure.  On our second trip to the ER, we asked the doctor what the "magic number" is that should bring us to the ER.  He said he didn't want to give one, then he said he didn't know, then he decided on one that he'd tell us but, "maybe someone would tell us different".  It sounds so much like an answer the Intern in this book would give when thrown in front of a firing squad.  Now I think, did that doctor worry about that number he gave us?  That if something happened to Brian and he wasn't quite at the number so we didn't go to the ER, was that his fault?  

My second thought was my schooling as a librarian.  Generally, if I give a wrong answer, I'm not going to kill someone.  What stress on a person to constantly worry about the wrong answer you might have given and never being able to move on.  It's a job that I could never do, and also a job that I hope there's a lot less "trial by fire" than there probably is.

If you enjoy non-fiction, want to learn more about what goes into the making of a doctor, or just want a good, quick read, this is definitely the book for you.

Friday, June 26, 2015


Amazingly, I've only had to unfriend one person on Facebook tonight.  I don't do it often, and I like to think I'm a pretty tolerant person.  But I won't deal with hatred on my own page.

I know some people aren't happy about today's ruling.  I get it.  The analogies will come out that now we can have plural marriage (what the person on my page had to say about my "rainbowed" profile picture).  Or marry dogs.  And of course, WWJD?  It's a sin!  It's a behavior!

Well, I'm pretty sure Jesus would tell you to love those people anyway.  Jesus would tell you not to judge those people.  Jesus might tell you that we are all made in his image, and this includes EVERYONE, not just you.  

I don't know.  I'm not Jesus.  And pretty glad I'm not.  That's probably a lot of pressure there, what with the miracles and the constant people praying at you and all.

Everyone is welcome to their opinion.  It's one of the things that our country is built on.  If I care about your opinion, I'll read it.  If I don't like it, I'll not read it.  But I certainly don't expect you to come over to my Facebook page and spew your hatred (and yes, it's hatred IMHO.  And on my Facebook page my humble opinion is the only one that matters).  If you don't like that, you are welcome to unfriend me.  I'm ok with that really.  I might miss you.  But it's ok.  I'll get over it.

My biggest question is, besides the "moral high ground" and the "I don't want to have THAT conversation about THOSE people with MY child", how does this ruling affect you in anyway if you aren't LGBT?  Really, as a straight person who is married, and does have gay friends, I'm thrilled for them, but either way, I'd wake up tomorrow and the world would still be turning.  Tomorrow, we'll all wake up and the world will still be doing it's thing for everyone.  Some of the same people who claim it's time to move to Canada said the same thing in 2012, and here they still are.  And the world is still turning, degraded moral compass as some see it and all.

But for my friend's that this directly affects:  It matters.  They're life is changed.  If you don't like gay marriage, don't marry someone of the same sex.  It's ok, I won't judge you.  That's not my job.

I personally feel that the world will be a better place with more people able to love and marry each other.  More love can't hurt, right?

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Book Review: Gramma Nancy's Animal Hats (and Booties, Too!) by Nancy Nielsen

I received this book for free from bloggingforbooks.com.

I reviewed the book, Gramma Nancy's Animal Hats (and Booties, Too) by Nancy Nielsen.

I didn't want to blog until I actually made some of the hats, and I was pleasantly surprised.  The hat instructions are clear and can be used for all hats.  Then you embellish the hat to make the animal whatever it is (I made the chicken hat for a friend's baby).  The other nice surprise is that the hats aren't just for babies, and are easily sized to fit everyone.

I made one of the hats for my daughter, who is 9, and it did fit a little snuggly.  I will go up a size next time I make them.  The other knock on the book is that some pieces were to be hot glued and stuffed with styrofoam, which was not attractive or safe for a child.  I know that the directions were written that way so that all skill levels of knit/crochet can do the embellishments, but I would have liked to have seen instructions for knit/crochet embellishments, or at least something that would have been safer for a child/baby (considering that this is the dynamic the book is marketed for).

Overall, the book is worth a look at the local library, if not as an addition to your library for it's reusability and cuteness.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Stranger in a Strange Land

So we moved.  We have most of the stuff we are unpacking, unpacked.  The garden is started and the bird feeders are filled.  I've set up a chore chart for the kids to start tomorrow, but for the most part they've been very helpful.

But I'd be remiss to say everything is great.  I don't quite know how my husband is going to do this job long term, mostly because this city appears to have given up.  It's very rare to get good customer service; everyone is rude.  And worse, I think that everyone in town is used to having everyone give them rude service, so no one even gets worked up about it anymore.  Evidently the only people who Brian has had complain about it are from out of town (and expect better).

We've heard probably from no less than 10 people "Why would you ever move here?".  One was a person working at Shopko pharmacy for 23 years and drives in a half hour every day.  And she wouldn't have it any other way.

I am a customer service oriented, people pleasing person.  I abhor bad service (and I reward good service).  The only good service we've gotten is at the local Papa Murphy's.  Every time we go they are helpful and pleasant.  And that's it.  Most of the time people don't bother to say please or thank you.  When they do, they come off insincere.

I just don't want my kids to think that's ok.  And I don't want to get so jaded that I act that way, or accept it.  I actually did my big grocery shopping for 2 weeks-$260 worth-up in Stevens Point after receiving such shitty service at our local Copps.  Today my parents came down and we went to the local Shopko garden center.  The worker (a high school kid) was a complete ass and could have cared less.  The plants looked half dead.  We ended up going up to Plover and checked out the local Shopko garden center there.  The plants looked great.  The person who checked us out (a high school kid) was helpful and friendly.  We went in the store to buy seeds, and the person who checked us out (another high school kid) was helpful and friendly.  So WTF?  Why does everyone treat everyone else like shit here?  Can it be fixed?  Am I having to resign myself to drive 25 minutes away to do all my shopping? 

Probably.  I refuse to get treated like shit.

Anyway, onto other news.  I feel like my house is indoor camping.  I woke up the other day with a giant spider crawling on my arm.  When I wacked it against the wall, it made a loud thunking sound. There are so many bugs: flies, wasps (they are getting in the basement, and we can't tell where), ladybugs.  And ticks.  Ticks everywhere.  Every day at least one of us has a tick on them.  We pulled one out of the cat's head.  I just took one off my neck as I type this.  It's terrible.

Our landlord told us that he's renting out the storage units, but the people only come by to pick up their vehicles in the summer and leave them in the winter.  So far, we've only seen one person coming to those.  But he failed to tell us when he was talking about how "he does a little farming in the gardens across the driveway" and his "daughter grows some pumpkins to save for money for school" that he's actually RENTING out the gardens, and we have random people coming by every day.  They don't come up our drive way, but they are right across from us.  And we have yet to see his daughter that grows pumpkins.  Just him.  And lots of random day labor people.

I am not a "call the landlord" type person.  But I swear every time something breaks, I'm having Brian call.  I am not fixing a damn thing in this house.  I'm not.

So I was going to complain about my house.  But I decided I'm going to talk about the good things.

1. I have a whirlpool tub that is giant, with jets.  It's very relaxing.
2. Everyone has their own bedroom, and we have two bathrooms.
3. The appliances are all new, or nearly new.
4. I finally have a dining room, and we finally bought a decent table.
5. I have a nice back deck.
6. We have bluebirds nesting in our yard.
7. We have a nice sized garden.
8. My air conditioning works.

So there.  I ended on a postive note.  And the tick is drowning in alcohol.  Hopefully I will be soon too.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

So...Almost June, huh?

I am very happy to say after a hospital stay, an extra ER visit, 2 primary care visits and a cardiology visit, Brian's blood pressure is way down.  Today at the doctor's office it was 118/76 (Better than mine!).  So it appears the meds and the changes we've made in diet are working.  Of course, we're only eating healthy and I have yet to lose 2 lbs.

It figures.

We are in the middle of moving, and my eye is twitching all the time from stress.  I have 3 able-bodies kids who don't want to help, a semi-able bodied husband who is never home, and me, who is working her ass off to get everything packed. Worse case Ontario (Thanks Ricky!) I have to get a storage unit to throw things from the garage in to get everything out of here.  I am hoping that doesn't happen.  It's stressful.

(By the way, if you haven't watched Trailer Park Boys, you're missing out):

I am also tired of feeling like the "Bad Mom".  I think sometimes the male-parental-units (mainly.  There are a bunch of stay-at-home dad's who get this, but it's usually, in the eyes of society, moms) understand the stakes.  Tonight at 8:30, I asked Nicholas in passing what he needs for his track meet tomorrow.  He says, "A water bottle.  And lunch."  Mind you, we have NO lunch things in the house.  I put extra money in the kids' hot lunch accounts knowing by this point everything will mostly be packed.  I had exactly $8.00 on me, so Nicholas is having a dollar store extravaganza tomorrow (secretly, I am happy I had to go to the dollar store.  I got all the same stuff I would have bought at the grocery store for half the price.  Emily even packed her lunch for tomorrow.) 

So then I get back, show him what I got for lunch and the next thing out of his mouth is, "You washed and folded my 6th grade shirt, didn't you?"  Fucking A, I have done about 50 loads of laundry in the past week.  I have no idea, but I know I saw him wear it last week.  So I start frantically searching the basement, hoping it didn't already go to Rapids.  And Brian says, "Let him find it".  Now here is what pissed me off:  It doesn't reflect on Brian he doesn't wear his special shirt.  It doesn't really even reflect on Nicholas.  It reflects on me for not taking care of house business and knowing where his shirt is.

Fortunately, it was washed and folded and pseudo-put-away in a drawer upstairs. 

In other news, Anna went out with a newish (old) friend from school again tonight.  This girl has been hanging with Anna more lately.  Unfortunately, it seems like every other thing that comes out of this girl's mouth is a lie, and the "every other" is a lie covering up the lie.  She's been working on an LGBT project, and has Anna helping her with calling Christian phone help lines to see their response when she says she is Christian and gay.  So I just had a feeling, and I told Anna (who, honestly, has not decided on a gender she prefers yet) that I though this girl, M, might be asking her to go out for ice cream to ask her out.  Sure enough, she got Anna a rose and a note that says she doesn't want to be "just friends" anymore.  Anna politely told her that she doesn't think of M that way, and she's flattered but no.  And of course now Anna feels bad for rejecting her.  I probably overstepped my "mom bounds" but I did tell her that it's possible M is asking her out to gauge her reaction for her project.  We also had a hard talk about friendship is a 2 way street, and Anna tends to pick people who use her.  I also said there is nothing wrong with her saying no, and she needs to do what is best for Anna in the end.

I taught her (and all 3 of my kids) that you never have to be a dick of someone you aren't interested in asks you out.  Be polite, but firm.  So Anna did this, and I proud of her.  I just wish she wasn't hurting from rejecting someone.

This parenting thing doesn't come with a manual...

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Stress, yarn and Knitting

I was hoping knitting would alleviate my stress a bit.  It has a little, but I wish it could do more.

Last Friday my husband was giving a speech during WAPL (Wisconsin Association of Public Libraries) conference and after he felt short of breath.  After much convincing, he went to the ER in Wisconsin Rapids (or home in 12 days).  There they diagnosed him with pneumonia and very high blood pressure, and checked his triponin, which is a heart enzyme that determines the likelihood of a heart attack.  It was elevated; they said it could be because of the sever pneumonia (he was just fine the day before!), but they admitted him to critical care and monitored the level. 

So I was in Wisconsin Rapids with the kids, and my parents went home.  I got the call at 9:30 that his triponin level had gone up, there was no cardiologist in WR, so they were transferring him to St. Clare's in Weston (an hour away).  First they had to find a hospital that wasn't full and would accept him.  Then, when St. Clare's did accept him, we had to wait an hour for an ambulance to come down from Weston to come get him.  I kind of did a little bit of "losing my shit", and asked the nurse how hospitals "just get full".  She said, "Lots of people had the flu" and my response was, "What, like The Stand??" 

I really thought early Saturday morning I was going to get a phone call that he was dying.

So Brian ended up in Weston.  After an echocardiogram, and a heart catheter, they found 20-30% blockage in his heart, but mostly it was about lowering his blood pressure (which at one point was 202/111) and treating his pneumonia.  He was discharged last Sunday, back in the ER up here in Appleton last Monday (his bp was 192/126) and after seeing a PA on Wednesday, his bp is up and down but not as dangerous (knock on wood...) as it was. He sees a cardiologist next week and a general practitioner the week after.

My oldest daughter's wonderful teacher brought us a homemade vegetable lasagna, which was delicious.  I had so many friends reach out to me and let me know they cared--it's very humbling.

So that is crisis time.  I've been working on the second roundabout sock, and it's coming along nicely:

I also went to a rummage sale in Manitowoc yesterday where a local fiber vender, Lucky Rose Fibers, was selling yarn and fiber.  I resisted the fiber (I so need to work on my spinning skills), but BritneyLe's yarn was half off, so I indulged and spent Mother's Day money from my mom and my "big fat rebate check" from Ebates on yarn.

 I can't wait to get knitting with it!

My other news is that I am officially unemployed.  I am going to be packing and sorting for the next 2 weeks.  I am so very sad to leave my job--I loved my job and my coworkers.  But I need to leave eventually, so I left while I had time to pack.  Very bittersweet.