Monday, October 29, 2012

Fresh Fish

Outside my window...grey, rainy and windy. Frankenstorm is headed up the eastern seaboard.
I am husband suggested maybe we should get some supplies since the storm is coming. I gave him the look. I have it covered. In Advance. That’s what Preppers do. We’re ready. 

 I am hoping....the power stays on this week. I would hate to be stranded downtown. I will bring an extra uniform just in case I have to sleep there. Be prepared.
I am thankful husband’s successful fishing trip. He caught his limit of trout, and his brother came along and caught the biggest fish, a 14 pound trout.

From the of my husband’s trout, potatoes and vegetables. My daughter’s carrot cake.
I am hearing...the howling wind.
I am wearing...jeans and a teal sweater. My daughter and I went shopping this past weekend for clothes. We consoled ourselves with retail therapy while my husband was fishing.
I am reading...10 Who Changed the World by Daniel Akin.

Around the daughter and her husband (strange to say that), came to visit on Friday. They are settling in to married life. She is changing her address on documents but not her name. I don’t get that, but I’ll hold my tongue. My youngest is heading into a horrendous month at school with many essays, group projects and other commitments due close to each other. I wish I could help her. I counted 25 writing projects in progress right now. 25! And this is a hobby! What would it be like if I did this full time?

One of my favourite things...freshly caught fish from a clean lake.

Some plans for the week...I’m afraid to check, but I think I’m on four nights. I’ll check at work. I know it’s at least Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. My aunt is already going back to Finland on Thursday. That went fast. I feel like I didn’t see her much, with the wedding plans and work, and their trips to London. She  hopes to come back for next summer.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Patient Etiquette: Things Nurses Wish They Could Tell Patients

You may be able to sense the sarcasm or the eye roll. We talk about these things to each other, but don’t say them to patients, but our working lives would be so much easier if people would exercise some common sense.

-If you are on regular prescription medications, bring them with you to the hospital. We may not have them or may not be able to access the pharmacy at night. At least bring a list of them if you don’t know the names, doses and frequencies. I don’t know which ‘little white pill’ you take.

-Bring your own toiletries. This is not a hotel. We don’t have blinders, toothpaste, mouthwash, gourmet coffee, or softer toilet paper for staff use only.

-If you don’t like our hospital gowns, bring your own pajamas. And please change out of your street clothes before you go to bed.

-If you don’t like our food (who does?), bring your favourites from home. There is no room service, no access to a kitchen at night, and a very sparsely stocked pantry.

-If you can manage to walk outside to smoke, you probably can walk to the washroom in your room at night. You don’t need a urinal at night. You’re a big boy. It’s not too hard to unplug your I.V. pump from the wall.

-Don’t go for a walk, and then return to your room to buzz your nurse to get you ice water. The pantry is for patient use.

-You have been admitted to hospital for a reason; you need nursing care. Most people don’t come to hospital because of the comfortable beds and great food. You won’t get the best sleep, but we have to check on you frequently through the night. If you wake up alive, that’s why.

-If you are asked to come to hospital two hours before surgery, please be prompt. Don’t complain about it. It’s not as bad as catching an international flight. The reason we ask you to do it is so we have time to admit you and also, if the first case is stuck in traffic, we can send in the second case, who is ready.

-Please limit your visitors. A dozen people in your room is not necessary when you are in for one night. (If I had a dime for every time this happened...) Also, visitors, please leave the room when asked to do so, so we can do our job.

-Don’t tell your relatives they can come to visit at all hours. We don’t feel safe when a stranger is suddenly standing in front of us at 1 a.m. or, worse, has just walked by unannounced and is in the patient’s room.

-Please be considerate to your roommate. Don’t allow your friends and relatives to use the toilet (or shower) in your room. There is a visitor washroom. They can shower at home. If I had a dime...

-If you share a room, please don’t keep your light, TV. computer or radio on all night. If you can’t sleep, please come out to the patient lounge.

-If you have sleep apnea, please bring your CPAP machine to hospital. It’s more than a little ridiculous that you want to stay for observation. Yes, we can see you’ve stopped breathing. Perhaps that could have been avoided.

-Family members: if you want to stay overnight with the patient, don’t sleep in the bed with the patient or crawl into the opposite clean bed which is for an early morning admission. If we offer you a cot, please take it. Don’t refuse it and then sleep on the window sill. You are not a cat.

-If you come to visit a co-worker, please know their name. A first name alone, or even a nickname won’t help us to locate them for you. If I had a dime...

-Don’t come in for surgery with a fresh manicure and all your jewellery, and then get mad at us when it must be removed.

-Please know your sickle cell status if you are African American.

-If you have asthma, please bring your puffers with you. Even if you haven't had any issues in a long time, the anaesthetic could trigger an attack.

-Don’t go for a walk carting a full urinal on your I.V. pole.

-If you are told to have nothing to eat or drink after midnight, please don’t drink a glass of orange juice or eat a light breakfast. Your surgery or procedure may have to be cancelled or rescheduled. This is for your safety, not your inconvenience. If I had a dime...

Thanks to Bindu Patel for starting this conversation on facebook.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Fishing Widow

Outside my window...dark. It’s almost midnight.

I am thinking...our Premier quit and pro-rogued parliament to avoid answering for a $700,000,000 scandal. Who said Canadian politics was boring?

I am husband finds an alternate way to go fishing, so I’m not stranded without a vehicle for the weekend.

I am thankful for... a husband who is willing to watch U-51, my favourite movie, even though we’ve seen it more than 100 times. Literally.

From the kitchen... curried chicken, rice and beans, broccoli.
I am hearing... Love it or List it.
I am wearing...jeans and a beige sweater.
I am reading...Knowing God by J.I. Packer as prep for the first retreat.

Around the house...I’ve been prepping our 24-hr go-bags for emergency evacuation this week, as well as stocking food in our emergency supplies. Found peanut butter on sale, so I bought three.

One of my favourite things....Pinterest.  It’s a great website for so many ideas and links to blogs.

Some plans for the week....errands on Monday morning. Work three nights. Start work on one of my retreat messages and my next Women of Faith message on Solomon. My husband and his brother are going on a fishing trip with our friends from up North. My daughter and I are having a girls’ weekend of shopping, eating and watching movies. Church on Sunday and a movie at church on Martin Luther to mark Reformation Sunday.


Sunday, October 14, 2012

I'm a Mother-in-Law

Outside my window...rainy but warm. It was cool on our daughter’s wedding day, but it was sunny.
I am thinking...I got a call out of the blue from someone at a church down the street. They heard I was a speaker and would I be interested in speaking at their Ladies’ Retreat. I didn’t know how they knew that, since it hasn’t been announced yet that I’m the speaker next May for the SGF Ladies’ Retreat. Anyway, it’s in February. I said yes. I’m excited but humbled by the responsibility given to me. I haven’t chosen a topic yet.

I am hoping...Kody gets help with his behavioural issues. He nipped at a little dog while at doggie day care for two nights. They didn’t seem to notice any triggers to his behaviour, which makes it harder to fix.

I am thankful for...the testimony of our daughter’s wedding. There were many unbelievers there and the message and every part of the day was such a testament to what marriage represents. There were about 200 people at the ceremony and 85 at the reception. Because of the limited size of the venue for the reception, we had refreshments at the church. I made the desserts and candy bar and my son-in-law’s family made the appetizers. There was also coffee, tea, and punch. It was great for those who travelled far. This was the first wedding in Harvest Oakville’s new building.

From the kitchen...Atlantic salmon and oven roasted mini-potatoes.
I am hearing... a quiet house. Everyone else is still asleep. That’s what happens when you wake up at 6 a.m. on a Sunday morning.
I am wearing...pajamas.
I am reading...the book of Isaiah and the book of 1st Thessalonians. I’m happy that I’ve been keeping up with my daily Bible reading. I may just make it to the end of the year for once, God willing.  

Around the house...My eldest is on her honeymoon in California. My youngest is trying to catch up with the homework that was delayed for the wedding. My mom is in London with her sister and brother. My husband is busy at work with a difficult course on finances and accounting. I found my time off went far too quickly. We ate out almost every night this week. I can’t wait for simple meals or leftovers. We are probably having an overnight guest again tonight.

One of my favourite things....seeing so many friends and family at the wedding.

Some plans for the four nights. Speak at the Women of Faith meeting on Saturday morning, dinner party on Saturday night. We are guests this time. Church on Sunday.


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Four Ways to Keep Your Marriage Healthy and Happy

A house needs more than repairs and maintenance, it needs renovation and updated decor. Likewise, a marriage needs sparks. Here are four things to do to keep your marriage healthy and happy.


-affirmations of love and affection

-always kiss when one of you arrives or leaves. A proper kiss, not a peck.

-say, “I love you” every day


-at least ten minutes of snuggle time. Since I work nights, my husband and I often see each other for one hour a day, at supper time. Spending a few minutes together is essential.


-date night. Plan early in the week what you will be doing, even if it’s not extravagant, so you have something to look forward to.                          
–guard your date night. Most of our friends and relatives know Friday is date night at our house and they are hesitant to intrude. 
–it can be inexpensive and simple like board games, a movie, or reading a book together, take out or dinner out.     

-continue this even once you have children. Get a babysitter, or let them know this is time for mommy and daddy. You will be modelling what a healthy marriage looks like. 


-take turns planning a special date night. It doesn’t have to be expensive.     

–mark it on your calendar. Try not to let anything change it. Give it priority. 

–it can occur on your usual date night, or another day if it’s a special event, i.e. soccer game or theatre.  

 – consider what the other person likes to do when it’s your turn to plan. i.e. husband plan a romantic date, wife plan a steamy date.


-plan a getaway for a night, a weekend or a week. No kids. Act like newlyweds.


Wedding Week

Outside my window...partly cloudy and cool. Most of the leaves have turned.
I am thinking...I need to get going on this long to-do list. I need to get all the baking done in the next few days.
I am hoping...Kody will not fight with other dogs when he’s at doggie day care for two nights.
I am thankful for... so much. Health, strength, my salvation, my job, my church, my marriage, the salvation of my children, my Christian son-in-law, my home, my library, my hobbies, our vehicle, good friends, and a safe and secure, peaceful country.
From the kitchen...dinner out.  I’m also going to receive a gift. It’s something like a computer tablet.
I am hearing...the morning news about possible Chinese espionage in Canada.
I am wearing...pajamas, because it’s only 7 a.m.
I am reading...Springtime of the Spirit by Maureen Lang.
Around the house...I find the days go so quickly, or else it’s that I’m not very productive. My sleep-wake routine is still not a routine, even though I’m off work all week.
One of my favourite things....trying new foods.
Some plans for the week....tonight my husband and I are going to a dinner for my 25 years of nursing service, even though I’m over 26 years already. We’ve had two big Thanksgiving dinners already, at my future son-in-law’s parents, then at my sisters. We met some of his relatives who are here from Cairo for the wedding. The rehearsal is on Wednesday, the bridesmaids are staying over on Thursday, and then the big day is Friday. I have an early hair appointment that day. It should go smoothly, I think. We have a hotel room booked for near the venue. So far the weather for Friday is supposed to be sunny and 9 degrees.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Ten Rules of Parenting: A.K.A. Common Sense

Since our daughters are 20 and 22, I feel I can offer these tips in hindsight. They worked for us.

1.       If your child asks for something still in the future, i.e. “Can we go to the zoo on Saturday?” Don’t say yes or no. Say, “We’ll see.” That way, if something comes up that makes it impossible to go, you won’t be seen as breaking a promise. Children hate when we break promises to them.

2.       If your child asks to sleep over at a friend’s house, don’t give in if they phone home in the middle of the night, asking to come home. Say, “You’re fine. Go back to sleep. I’ll see you in the morning.” If they really aren’t ready for a night away, they’ll think twice before they ask again, and you can remind them of this call the next time they ask.

3.       Allow children to accompany you to the grocery store, preferably only one child at a time, so they’ll feel it’s a privilege. Make sure they understand in advance that if they start begging or whining for things, they won’t come with you again. Mean what you say.

4.       If your child throws a temper tantrum in a store, go home immediately. Let them know they will not be allowed to come to the store/mall/restaurant with you in future if they act like that.

5.       If your child is prone to whining when they ask for things, say, “Whining is an automatic No to whatever you were going to ask. Ask again properly.” Be consistent.

6.       Don’t allow children to interrupt adults who are talking, unless it’s an emergency. Teach them to wait for a break in the conversation to say, “Excuse me.”

7.       If children are arguing over food, i.e. cake, say, “One slices, the other chooses.” Once they’ve decided which one does which, you can bet the first one will slice two evenly sliced pieces.

8.       If your child doesn’t like what’s for dinner, ask, “How old are you?” “Seven.” “Okay, seven more bites.” This backfired on my husband. The kids would ask, “How old are you?” “Forty-seven.” “Okay, forty-seven more bites.”

9.       If they don’t like their dinner, say, “This is not a restaurant.” Worked in my house.

10.   If your child won’t stay in his bed at bedtime, tell him he doesn’t have to sleep, but he does have to stay in his room.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Character Flaws

Outside my window...the first day of October. Warm and sunny. I just came back from a long walk with Kody.
I am thinking...I had my evaluation at work the other day after a particularly busy night. It’s never easy hearing your character flaws, and my manager is not the Queen of Tact, but it wasn’t too bad. I do need to change my attitude about work. I tend to react instead of act when I see we have many patients and not enough nurses. Now I don’t stop at the board to check before I take my coat off. I just walk straight to the staff room and then deal with it when I come out. I don’t want my co-workers to dread seeing me.
I am hoping...the money we cashed in for my daughter arrives before the wedding.
I am thankful for...a full fridge and pantry. We have all we need and to spare.
From the kitchen...beef and vegetable stir fry with Thai noodles.
I am hearing...traffic outside. It’s nice enough to keep the windows open.
I am wearing...jeans and a purple tank top.
I am reading...King Solomon: The temptation of money, sex and power by Phillip Graham Ryken.
Around the youngest is on a university field trip today to Kingston, Ontario to learn about how they train peacekeepers. . My husband is home today because he didn’t sleep at all last night. He has a lot of worries because of his job. My eldest was away for the weekend and will be home today. Just a few more things to do for the wedding.  I sent off my synopsis. Now to get working on my messages. I also need to do more research on self-control and contentment. Better to have too much information and pare it back, than not enough.

One of my favourite things....sunshine.  It makes me happy. I think I would get S.A.D. (seasonal affective disorder ) if I lived in Finland or northern Canada. I need light. Already it’s so dark so early. Blah. I hate winter. One day I want to live some place tropical and have a palm tree in my yard.
Some plans for the three nights, then I’m off eleven days for our daughter’s wedding. I’m getting my hair highlighted on Friday. Gotta cover up the grey. My aunt is coming from Finland on Thursday as a guest for the wedding. She’ll be staying with us about a month. It’s my mom’s baby sister.  We’re having Thanksgiving Dinner at my sister’s on Monday.