Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Freedom!

Last week we got really, really good news. Jonathan was picked to go to the national echo cardiogram conference in Washington DC in June. Basically this is a big convention where techs and doctors can learn about new tools, machines etc. Jonathan will be gone from June 5th - June 10th.

I'm happy for Jonathan because the higher-ups at the hospital wanted to send somebody with seniority, but the direct managers convinced them that Jonathan had a lot of influence and had done a lot for the department. And he gets to go with his good work friend and I know they're going to have lots of fun causing havoc all over DC.

I'm really happy for me because I LOVE having time to myself and I haven't had any since the year we were first married and that was only for a couple days. I love my husband to pieces, but sometimes it's wonderful to have a few days alone.

With Jon out of town I don't have to cook, I don't have to do nearly as much laundry (until he comes back) and it's much easier to keep the house up. When he leaves I tend to revert to college days. I have cereal for dinner, I stay up really, really late, I eat lots of food that I'm not supposed to have and I watch way more stupid TV shows than I do normally. With Jon gone I can turn on MTV, (which makes me feel old) curl up with a book, some chocolate, a beer and just be. Now, granted, I could do this even with Jonathan in the house but it's not as much fun. When he's away, I feel like I'm getting away with something, even though I know he could care less what I'm doing.

I'm going to have 5 entire days to myself and I'm going to cherish every moment. I'm going to have caffeine because there won't be anyone around to tell me not to. And there won't be anyone around to tell me to stop complaining about how uncomfortable I am once the caffeine kicks in and my heart rate sky rockets. There won't be anyone around to tell me that popcorn and ice cream is not nutritional and does not equal dinner. There won't be anyone around to pop into the living room, or bedroom, on the weekend to ask "Have you really been reading for 5 hours straight??" Oh my, it's going to be wonderful.

And here's the best part: No X-Box from June 5th - June 10th. No guns, no shouting into the headphones, no parties at our house, no online parties. I'm going to have days of peacefulness and I am going to treasure them.

BUT - it's probably a good thing he will only be gone for a few days. At the end of our time apart I will miss him, it will be our 3 year anniversary, and I will desperately need a decent meal.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

D-O-G

My dog, Isabel, is a genius. Or at least as smart as your average 2-year-old. The other day I was talking to Jonathan about the dog and who was going to take her outside to play. I spelled the word "out" because I knew if I said it she would be immediately ready to go and would get over-excited. When Isabel gets excited about going somewhere she follows you around the house and yawns. I'm not kidding. Her immediate response to going somewhere is to yawn and yawn and yawn until you put her in the car. And her yawns get bigger and bigger and bigger until you're pretty sure her jaw is going to unhinge if you don't get her outside. So we try not to say any words that may trigger this until we are absolutely ready to go.

Unfortunately certain actions also start the yawning process (putting on shoes or jackets) AND she can now understand some of the words we spell them out. And so the other night when I spelled "out" I was shocked when she jumped up and headed for the stairs. Our strategy now is to spell things backwards or mix the letters up a bit. If we spell the same thing too many times in a row she will pick up on it and learn that whatever we are spelling means she gets to play.

I don't know why I thought getting a border collie would be a good idea. I thought I knew what I was getting into, but I don't really like being outsmarted by my dog on a regular basis. Plus, any dog we get from here on out will seem so stupid. I can usually teach Isabel a new command in an afternoon. All I have to do is repeat it three or four times, give her a treat each time and she's good to go.

Despite all her smarts though, she is impossible to walk on a leash. She will not heel and we cannot get her to heel. Isabel hates being on a leash, she would much rather run free at the dog park, or go swimming, or hiking and I think she is an absolute tyrant when we leash her because she doesn't want to be leashed.

I love Isabel to pieces but my vocabulary is limited around her. Following are the words and phrases she responds to: go, going, out, swim, swimming, river, play, playing, park, Frisbee, ball, leash, come over here, come with me, do you want to, walk, run, find Jon, what's that?, kitty, cat, and car. I'm sure she knows more but that's all I can remember right now.

What's really interesting is how much she's changed since we first got her from the Humane Society. Isabel was terrified of inclines and hills when we first took her on walks and hikes. Now she's a log climbing, river swimming, mountain goat of a dog who loves to be outside. I love spending time with her but some days I wish she would pay less attention to me and what I'm saying.

Right now I'm trying to teach her "What's that noise?! Check perimeter, check perimeter." For some reason she is not picking up on this command, but I am hoping she will get it soon. Part of the problem may be that I don't exactly know how to teach her this one ...

The 11:00 news is on soon. I have to check in on my dangers of getting swine flu! And then I have to tell my dog how much I love her.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Playing catch-up

I didn't realize it's been so long since I posted. The weekends have been so nice I've spent most of my time outside recently.

This past weekend Jonathan and I went to the beach. It was our first trip of 2009 and it was very Oregon-beach-like. It was really sunny on our way to Lincoln City but as soon as we hit the town it fogged over and things got cold and windy. I had visions of lying on the beach in a t-shirt while the dog and Jonathan played around. Instead I curled up behind a log and tried to read while the wind whipped around me. I don't know why I was hoping for a warm day on the beach in Oregon in April. Hope springs eternal, I suppose.

Jonathan spent his time playing in a stream and throwing the Frisbee for the dog. Yes, he is 27 (since Monday!) but he still enjoys the simple things in life. He used rocks, sticks and sand to divert the stream and create new pathways. The dog enjoyed laying on top of, and therefore ruining, all of his new little streams.

Monday night Jonathan's friends came over for an X-Box party. I'll never get over 7 grown men, all of them married, most with children, playing video games for hours on end. I don't mind having his friends over, I just find the situation interesting. All of his friends are polite, nice to me and they usually clean up after themselves. My upstairs smells horrid for a couple days after, but they all have fun and I get to be the laid back wife who doesn't mind having all of the guys over. Maybe the other wives are on to something ...

In other news, I got the green light from all of my doctors regarding conception. I have to switch my thyroid medication in May and I want to wait a couple months after that. My endocrinologist says we can start trying to conceive any time we want, but I'm sticking to the conservative route. I want to know how my body reacts to the new medication before I toss in pregnancy hormones.

Jonathan wants to stick to our original plan of going off birth control in September. I'm pushing for August because I'm already feeling impatient and I think it's going to take us a long time to conceive. He said I can go off birth control and he doesn't even have to know about it unless I get pregnant right away. I vetoed that idea because I think it seems like a dangerous way to proceed. I never want to lie to Jonathan about birth control because it seems like entrapment (even though we are already married!).

I was contemplating a gentle birthing center but the nurse practitioner I am seeing right now said she doesn't feel there is one close enough to a hospital around here. Plus within 2 minutes of being born (or something ridiculous like that) the baby has to be checked for signs of hyperthyroidism and most birthing centers aren't able to do those tests. Now I'm trying to decide if I will use the nurse practitioner I am currently seeing in McMinnville or if I will try to find a new n.p or OBGYN in Salem. I love the nurse I am seeing in Mac and she can be the one who delivers the baby but I'm afraid there may be a price difference if we use Mac hospital. With Jonathan working at Salem hospital one of our benefits is cheaper care. We don't have to pay for ultrasounds and I think part of the hospital fee would be covered as well.

Why am I worrying about all of this now? Because I like to have all of my ducks in a row before I start on something new. And the only way I am going to be able to handle being pregnant and all of the changes that come with a baby is planning and having everything that can be planned ahead settled before I get pregnant. So, my "before I get pregnant this is what I need to know plan" is coming up on the one year mark and soon I will transition into the "oh my stars, we're going off birth control plan."

I love having the option to plan and think things through. I'm viewing this summer as a chance to get myself into shape before I try to get pregnant. I'm doing lots of Wii yoga and taking lots of walks and trying to prepare myself mentally and physically. I'm also viewing this summer as my last hurrah. I know, that's a tad dramatic, life doesn't stop once you have children but it certainly doesn't stay the same either.

I need to start dinner and take the dog out for a walk. It looks like it may rain tonight and for the next few days but I'm hoping the sunshine returns soon!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Found!

I found that elusive copy of Little Bee!! While straightening the ARC shelves in the staff room yesterday I found the slim little book. Good thing I decided to clean out my office and then got distracted and decided to clean up the staff room.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Lost & Found

There's a book titled Little Bee I really want to read right now. It's in the book store in hardcover and it's selling pretty well. I know an advanced copy came in before this book was published. I know I read what it was about and I thought I put it back in the box and decided to pass because I wasn't in the mood for something so serious. Now it's getting great reviews, people are recommending it, I want to read it and I can't find it. I searched the staff room at the store, I looked next to my desk, and I looked all over my house. Sometimes I take advanced copies home without even realizing it. It's like a compulsion.

I also have this strange little book hiding habit. It's not intentional, nor do I realize I am doing it most of the time. I just tend to put books in what I consider a safe space and then wonder why I can't find them. There are a number of books I know I saw the advanced copy for, I remember holding them in my hand, and yet when I want to read them I can't find them again. Have I been hiding books from myself this whole time? I don't think so, but anything is possible with me.

A couple weeks ago my husband and I started working on our spring cleaning list. I found books in the strangest places all over the house. He found a couple titles in the basement and garage. I'm a little surprised at how many books I found stashed away considering we've only lived in this house since late September. I have a really bad habit of pulling books off my bookshelves, thinking "I'll read this soon, I'm going to put it next to the bed, or on the 'read soon' shelf." (Yes, I really do have a read soon shelf). However, these books rarely make it to their destination. Instead I get distracted and put them in the hall cupboard with the towels, or I set them down in the second bedroom when I go in to get a sweater, or I leave them upstairs and they get pushed underneath the couch. Trust me, it's not intentional. As a matter of fact, I think it's one of my more annoying habits.

I also have a bit of an issue with the quantity of books in my house. I really need another bookshelf, but Jonathan wants to build it and that is not on the priority list right now. So I've resorted to stacking books in various places around the house. But when company comes over I feel compelled to clean up those piles so I end up shoving books into closets and under beds and in other random places.

Last week my parents were coming over. Right before they were due to arrive I realized I had a couple Charlaine Harris books lying around. Harris writes a series of vampire books which I am embarrassed to admit that I read. I was worried my parents would see the books lying around and would know I was reading a vampire book with a bit of sex in it. What good vampire novel doesn't have sex?? So I panicked and I shoved the books into a wicker basket on the top of one of my bookshelves. Yes, I am 25 and they probably wouldn't have noticed, but old habits die hard.

This weekend Jonathan went to put some receipts in the basket (we use it as a catch-all for reciepts and other things that end up in the living room) and came up with the two books. "What the heck?" he asked me as he turned around, the books in his hands. "Oh, hey thanks, I've been looking for those. I want to take them to the store so we can sell them as used copies." Bless his heart, he handed them over without another word.

Now, if only I could find that advanced copy of Little Bee ...

Friday, March 13, 2009

This crazy, spinning Earth

Time seems to be speeding up these days. I can't believe it's already March 13th! This means my brother is 24 and April will be here before I'm ready.

On March 16th I have my biyearly check-up with my endocrinologist. Have I mentioned how much I love this man? He keeps me alive, and sane, I kid you not. During this appointment I am going to switch my medication. This is the first step, out of about one thousand, on the road to having a baby.

Or maybe this is the 2nd or 3rd step? My endo. and I have had this plan in place for at least 2 years, if not longer. Every time I go to his office he asks me about my family planning timeline. The first two times I wrung my hands and nearly cried. After that I was able to tell him I wasn't ready yet. And then during my last visit he forced me to talk about when I would be ready. He very kindly explained to me that I have to switch my medication and we need to know how I react to this switch long before I am pregnant. If my body reacts poorly I could become hyperthyroid and if I was pregnant when this occured, I would most likely miscarry. It's been strange to think about these things way before I am ready for them to happen, but at the same time, it's good to be prepared.

Even though I am determined not to tell people when we are going to start trying (such a weird concept/term, I have to say) I have been letting it slip that it is in the future. I am beginning to wonder if I shoud stop fighting the urge to tell everyone I meet that I am taking this HUGE first step. Whenever I do something I consider momentus I have to tell everyone I know, as well as some strangers, what is going on with me. It is a compulsive need and I'm not sure I can stop it now.

Side note: When did it become such a big deal to become pregnant?? Used to be women got married, got pregnant and lived their lives. Now there's baby registries, showers and all sorts of hullaballo when a woman gets pregnant / gives birth. I think somewhere along the line everyone forgot that this is a natural process. I'm not saying I don't like the choices that come along with birth control and the modern age; I just don't understand what all the fuss is about. Maybe I will when I'm pregnant???

And now back to where I started: in one year it will be March 13th 2010. My brother will turn 25, April will be right around the corner, and I could be pregnant.

I think I need to go breathe deeply into a paper bag now.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Victories

I've been feeling pretty good about what I've accomplished in my life lately. Most of these victories are superficial, or just plain stupid, but I'm still going to give myself a pat on the back.

- When I first started straightening my hair I had to focus and it took me at least 35 minutes. On Monday I straightened my hair, ate an English muffin and told my husband what laundry could be dried ALL AT ONCE. That's me multi-tasking at my best.

- My husband would be upset with me if he knew I was putting this up here, but he doesn't read this so it's all good. In the winter Jonathan gets dandruff and he's always used Head and Shoulders to control the problem. However, it doesn't work because it covers up the symptoms. This year I made him shampoo from essential oils and it's working!! Lately I have learned that the recommended treatment is not always the right treatment. This of course can apply to any and all aspects of my life.

- I have been working out and I've been enjoying it! I would like to lose 5, or 10 lbs, but just getting toned would be all right with me too.

- I sold my old car for $900.00!! I bought it 5 years ago for $2,000.00. The oil leaks, the air conditioning does not work and the check engine light has been on for at least a year. And yet, 3 hours after my husband posted the notice on CraigsList, we sold the car. I was so worried we would be stuck with it forever.

- Jonathan and I have decided when we are going to try to have children. This is a HUGE step for me, but now that I know we are going to try and when we are going to try I can relax. And just to be clear, trying is not going to happen NOW or in the near future.

Tomorrow we are doing Inventory at the store so I need to have a piece of peanut butter toast and go to bed. I realize eating peanut butter toast at 8:30 pm is not going to help me lost weight or get toned, but some nights it's necessary. I have to get up before 6:00 am tomorrow. In all honesty, I can't remember the last time I did that.

Enjoy the small, and large, victories in your own life!

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