Sunday, October 21, 2012

Week 43 - Just Another Week

The weeks are just blending into each other lately. Work, swimming, knitting and, unfortunately, not sleeping well and plagued with hot flashes. Despite having nothing exciting to share, I’m still lovin’ life.
I didn’t swim on Monday because I needed to get home and frost the banana cake I’d made the night before. The up side of that was I got to eat dinner before knitting. The cake was a bit dry but everyone still ate it and I sent the leftovers (more than half a cake) home with Donna, putting some baked goods in my Ed bank for next time I have a household issue. He always comes to my rescue.

I slept like crap on Monday night so was dragging on Tuesday. A double dose of Starbuck’s got me through the day. Let’s hear it for caffeine! There was no swimming because of fall break so I was looking forward to going straight home. I got an email that I needed to do a check for Friends and deliver it that night, which meant stopping home for the checkbook and getting a second signature before delivering it. Denise offered to deliver it after she signed it so I was home by 6:30. I had dinner, watched some TV and went to bed early. For once I slept well, which was a damn good thing.

I had a meeting first thing on Wednesday, which went well and made my morning fly. I was supposed to go to UAAD at lunch but an IDM problem reared its ugly head and I worked through lunch and was back and forth with the programmers all afternoon. The day was over in a flash and I was back in the pool. It was freezing cold – both the air and the water – but the class was fun and we warmed up quickly. I went home to the dinner of champions – cheerios. Lame as it was, it hit the spot. Sometimes you just gotta have cereal for dinner.

Dodie couldn’t do lunch on Thursday so I went thrifting with Darla and hit pay dirt. I got a wonderful sweater, some tacky 70’s pillowcases (what is it about 70’s linens that I love? The orange and pink maybe?), some zippers, a china soup cup in my pattern, a blouse for a friend and more. It was just a little bit of everything and totally fun. You’d think with such a successful lunch with one of my favorite people, I’d be in a good mood. Nope! A funk set in over the afternoon (no reason why) and it lasted through swimming. Anne noticed it. It was that bad. Then I had to hit HyVee and get food for Kate, who was home with a horrible virus. I’m not a germophobe but didn’t want to touch anything or breathe her air so I dropped the stuff on her counter and practically ran to the car where I pulled out a disinfectant cloth and wiped down every surface I’d touched. I felt bad about bolting so called her from the car to chat. Chalk one up for good karma.

I had a super productive day on Friday, getting tons checked off on my to do list, and the day was over in a flash. I went straight home, happy the weekend was here. I finished a pair of socks while watching TV so it was a good night too.

I woke up before 6:00 on Saturday, bummed that I hadn’t slept late. Hell, 7:00 would have felt good. I got up and started a new pair of socks. I chatted with Carolyn and then got ready for spinning. I brought my new socks and my wheel, figuring I’d try it again. And try I did with no luck. One of the spinners came over and tried and she had no luck either so that at least gave me hope. It’s not me! It’s my crappy wheel so it’s time to get a good one. After spinning, Andrea and I did an Omaha run, getting home at 7:00. I had a Trader Joe’s picnic of cheese, bread and wine and watched the last Gavin and Stacey DVD, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I went to bed hoping to sleep in on Sunday.

Not only didn’t I sleep in, I woke up at 3:30 and couldn’t get back to sleep. I finally got up at 5:00 and made a nice breakfast. Before 6:00 I was showered and dressed. Sheesh! I read for an hour and was starting to get drowsy so went back to bed, falling sound asleep. Then the phone rang. Damn! But at least I’d gotten another hour and a half bring my total to six-ish hours. Groan. Needless to say, I didn’t have a super productive day. I got laundry done and spent most the day reading. I didn’t even knit much. That’s tired! I can only hope for a hot flash free good night of sleep tonight.


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Week 42 - Another Productivity Shortage

I had a good week. I got lots done – at home, at work, errands, everything! – and on Friday I had my last PT. I spent the week fighting hot flashes ALL THE TIME! If I could bottle this heat for this winter, I'd save a ton on my heating bills. At least they've morphed from visibly dripping from the neck up to just hot everywhere. Other than the fact that I turn fans on everywhere I go, at least I'm not mopping sweat. So there's that at least. How's that for looking for the silver lining? Gold star in my opinion. Anyway, on to my week.....
I had a meeting that ate up most of Monday morning but was fun – going through all the steps between budget, financial and HR to cope with a reorg under Academic Affairs. There was lots of laughter, which always makes for a good meeting. When that was over, I jumped in the car and went down to Michael’s, where I scored some great stuff for my swap. I spent what seemed like most of the afternoon with Nora and then just couldn’t cope with rushing from the pool right to knitting so skipped swimming in favor of going home to eat some dinner before knitting. It was nice not to rush around. I never used to swim on Mondays but at some point decided that rushing like a banshee on Monday was worth it to have another night where I could go straight home. It may be time to rethink this.
On Tuesday morning, I used the ten minutes I save by not having to walk 4-5 blocks from my car (loving this temp handicapped pass!) to stop at Wal Mart before work to pick up coffee, which I didn’t have enough of to get through the week. Going in the morning is the only way to shop there. And because I can leave and come back to my spot right outside the door, Darla and I went to our favorite thrift store and then hit HyVee for pizza and salad. I had thought about paying to get a close spot, which would be expensive and have to be approved by the Vice Chancellor, but didn’t pursue it when my knee got so much better. Hmm…. Maybe I should rethink that too.

Anyway, I swam on Tuesday, which was pretty miserable because it was cold everywhere – the air and water, meaning we were freezing whenever our shoulders were out of the water. I happily went home to sit and knit. I wanted to watch Frontline, which was a profile of both Obama and Romney. I struggled to keep my eyes open, actually dozing in my chair – something I never do. At least I slept well when I finally went to bed.
Wednesday was another busy day at work, jumping from one thing to another all day long. I had planned to skip swimming and go home and cook pasta before Survivor but Kate reminded me that we had fewer classes next week so I went. It was cold again but it was Sarah’s shallow class so it went quickly and was fun. I had brought my sweats so changed into them and went right home to watch Survivor and knit. It felt great.

Dodie and I went to lunch on Thursday at Panera and it was another quick day at work, with another meeting in the afternoon. I don’t usually have many meetings but there were lots this week. My knee was a bit twingy after the shallow class on Wednesday so I skipped swimming and went food shopping. Just putting the groceries away felt like I was getting something done. I did neatize the kitchen a bit too. Maybe that was it.
I finished a sock before work on Friday. Always a good start to the day. I spent the morning working on my to do list from Thursday’s meeting and then dropped watches at the battery place before doing lunch with Layton. I was leaving work at 4:00 for my last PT so would pick up the watches either before or after that. The afternoon flew and I made good time (no traffic until 5:00 I guess) so picked up the watches beforehand. PT was hard (duh!) but my last and they gave me a parting gift (yes, that’s what they called it) – a nice commuter cup. I went home to start my weekend, with high hopes for it being productive.

The only plan outside the house was sorting books at the library from 11:00-3:00. I was supposed to bring a goodie so made pretzel/rolo/pecan turtles Saturday morning and picked up the kitchen before leaving for the library. As I suspected, just Pat and I showed up at 11:00. We couldn’t tell what had been done already or even which books needed sorting and I couldn’t get anyone on the phone so we just dug in. Another friend showed up with his grandsons and then Jenna and Denise came. We made good time, probably because there are only half as many books as we should have for a decent book sale. This isn’t going to be pretty. But I was home at 1:00 so was happy to be done with it.
Unfortunately, I didn’t have a very productive afternoon. Yup, I was sitting and knitting. Go figure. I got two packages in the mail, both yarn, so it was a fiber filled day. Yay! I did get up long enough to sort through my food cupboards, which were in total disarray. Then after more sitting, I did rally and made a big pot of chili for supper, using some of the many cans of beans I found in the cupboard. I was not a paragon of productivity but oh well, that seems to be my weekend MO lately.

I got up Sunday determined to spend the day cooking, using up the ridiculous amount of food I had in the house. I started with pancakes and bacon then the baking began – banana bread, chocolate chip cookies and banana cake to take to knitting (just the cake.) Then I made cauliflower cheese and ham steak for dinner and 3 bean salad and tuna salad for lunches. So, I’ll certainly eat well this week. Good thing because I’ll need lots of energy just to clean up all the pots and pans I dirtied in my cooking spree. I think I used them all. At least I have the pressure of the cleaning lady coming this week so I’ll have to get them done. You know me – I work best with a deadline. Have a good week.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Week 41 - Fall is Here

It was pretty uneventful week, which worked for me. I went to PT 3 more times, swam twice and knitted. That covers the week. See? Uneventful. And my knee is better all the time. I’m at 11 degrees (from 23) and the therapist thinks that’s as straight as it will get. Since I’m walking normally and not in any pain, I’m fine with that. Just one more session and I’ll be done with PT.

Fall definitely arrived at the end of the week. We had our first hard freeze on Saturday so I pulled in all my plants but only temporarily since I plan to put the out again. The back room looks like a greenhouse. It was hovering around 60 in my house on Saturday morning and I was cold, between the hot flashes that is. It felt way too early but I turned the heat on. The sun wasn’t going to be out much and with it not forecast to even hit 50, it was only going to get colder. Oh well. I’m not complaining about the temp though. I’m all about fall this year. If we could just get some rain!

My only out of the house plans for the weekend were errands on Saturday. I drove up to the library to pick up the deposit and it was a mob scene. I had completely forgotten about the vendor fair so walked the tables and picked up a tray of homemade ginger cookies, ordered some Tastefully Simple cheeseball mixes and got a Christmas present for a friend. Then it was on to the bank, the thrift store (only filled one bag but got a cool stand up knitting bag from the 70’s) and then Andrea’s. When I got there she had a customer who was talking about peeling potatoes for the Colon church’s roast beef dinner on Sunday. Since I’d just bumped into Lorri at the library and made plans to grab lunch somewhere on Sunday, I decided it was time, after sixteen years in Nebraska, to hit one of these church dinners.

I did the big clothes swap on Saturday afternoon - pulling out all the sweaters and corduroys and putting away the capris. When that was done, I sat and knitted. Go figure. I made a comfort food dinner – Betty Crocker’s hamburger stroganoff (one of my dad’s favorites) – and went to bed hoping I’d sleep better now that the house wasn’t cold, which I did. I woke up at 4:15 on Sunday but was thankfully able to fall back asleep, not getting up until almost 8:00. Shocking! I went through the Sunday paper (I still had the past 2 weeks untouched so this was progress) and was doing chores earlier than usual. I spoke to Carolyn briefly and she asked about Connie, whom I’d emailed earlier in the week and hadn’t hear back from her. Well, I hadn’t been off the phone 2 minutes when the phone rang and it was Connie. We chatted for quite awhile (she and Gordy were driving home across South Dakota after one of his gigs) and made plans for me to drive up for a visit for last weekend in October. That’ll be fun and I’ll stay for 3 days so we can get some quality vegging in.

I was still on the phone when Lorri came. I changed out of my sweats and we headed for Colon. It’s a village of just over 100 people but there were a couple of hundred (at least) waiting in line for lunch. So Lorri and I went through the drive thru line (yes, they had a drive thru for a church dinner!) instead of waiting, taking our lunches home to eat at my house. For only $8 we got a huge portion of roast beef, mashed potatoes, corn, cole slaw, a homemade roll, a kolache (a less than stellar tasting Czech pastry that’s de rigueur in Saunders County) and a piece of pie. It was all delicious and I have enough to eat again. Maybe there’s something to these dinners? I may have to make an effort to do more of these.

The rest of the day was chores interspersed with knitting. I was still looking for the 2 watches I’d bought at the thrift store a month ago that were in a little baggie on the bar last time I saw them. I cleared the entire bar and desk but nothing. They’ll either show up somewhere stupid six months from now or they’re gone. Time will tell. I had a pile of paper after I gave up on the search so spent the evening going through mail, recycling, cutting coupons, etc. while watching TV instead of knitting.

So I’m starting the week in good shape with chores done and food in the frig for dinners after swimming. I’m facing a load of crap at work first thing on Monday but hope I can recoup from the bonehead user move and have a good week at work.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Week 40 - Physcial Therapy Rocks!

The news for the week is my knee – IT’S BETTER! And best of all, I have my life back. So, life is good is an understatement this week.

I went to the doctor on Monday afternoon to find out what my options were because I just couldn’t imagine going on with my knee, or should I say thigh, as it was. They told me my knee would never be straight again, pointing out all its problems on the x-rays, but also adding that since I had no pain in my actual joint, replacement wasn’t on the table. Not that I wanted that. I want to get as many years out of my knee as possible before considering knee replacement. When I asked about physical therapy, he said sure and wrote the prescription.
Fast forward to Wednesday morning when I was at PT bright and early at 8:00. After poking and prodding me, the PT said my quad wasn’t firing. It was a vicious cycle of the more my knee was bent, the less it fired and the less it fired, the more my knee bent. After doing all kinds of stretches, he hooked me up to electrodes and did a 10 minute cycle of 10 seconds of electricity, during which I could watch my thigh contracting, and 10 seconds off. It was pretty uncomfortable but so worth it. I stepped off the table and the pain and restriction in my thigh was gone! I could walk normally again. I could not have been happier! I went to work feeling like the weight of the world was off my shoulders. Layton even noticed my new lease on life just passing me in the hallway.

After starting off so well, Wednesday was just a wonderful day. Everything clicked. I had a super productive day at work, got to spend some time outside knitting over lunch and made it to the pool for the first time that week. Then it was home for Survivor. Such a good day! I hadn’t realized how much not being able to walk and stand was bringing me down until I could do both again. Life is good!

The rest of the week flew by. I ended up working late twice and only swam once so it was a good thing they put me through my paces on Friday morning at PT, where they had me on a bike and stair stepper in additional to all the other stretches and such plus a torturous weight machine that tired to force my knee straighter. At least I had knitting to distract myself from that and another electricity session. But it’s all good.

I food shopped a couple of times over the week, restocking the frig, and after my haircut on Saturday, hit Dollar General to stock up on toiletries and house stuff. Andrea and I had talked about doing an Omaha run but decided against it because neither of us needed anything. I planned to knit all weekend in an attempt to finish my 3rd pair of socks for the month. After lunch, I decided it would be fun to have company so called Andrea and Lori and invited them over for tea and knitting on the deck. The weather was perfect and knowing they were coming had me neatizing the entire house. They arrived ~3:00 and we sat for hours, knitting and having tea and cheesecake. It was a wonderful afternoon.
I did my laundry and a few remaining chores on Sunday and was able to finish my socks by mid-afternoon. What a perfect ending to a wonderful week. Fall is here to stay, my knee is near normal again and I have hope. I can see myself walking around Ireland next May now and can even imagine getting some fall gardening done. My life is back and I couldn’t be happier. Yay!