Monday, November 29, 2010

So when I first started at my new job they did say that occasionally there would be prisoners that would be patients. Being the University hospital and really the big community hospital there is always a variety when it comes to the patient population.
I have taken care of one prisoner before but he was just a thief who stole a car. He didn't really count. I mean he just had an officer outside of his room at the hospital waiting to take him to jail once he was healthy enough.

But yesterday I had my first real prisoner patient. I mean stereotypical, tatted up head to toe, in shackles chained to the hospital bed, and with not one but two armed guards with real guns watching his every move.
I work in such an interesting profession. I am sure it is very hard for some people to have true compassion for someone like this patient. To not have preconceived bias toward him, to treat him differently because of knowing where he comes from.
But for some reason (gift or flaw) I can't believe how easy it is for me to have compassion for someone that I know nothing about or that I know too much about (something as scary as how his home is prison). I didn't know why he was in prison initially and I really didn't care. I just wanted to make sure his pain was under control and I wanted to do my job in a caring way.
It's interesting how a physical appearance and some guards can really change the mood and tone in the room. People were scared of him for sure, the guards were very scary themselves.
But after 2 hours caring for him, I knew I did what I am best at. I advocated for him, prisoner or not and made sure he was comfortable. It has to take an real angel to work in the prison as a nurse. I just did it for 2 hours and it was difficult, let alone full time. However, if I change my mind....I did see the California prison is hiring online:) I love my current job very much at the moment...and it's looking better and better everyday.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

This may be a stupid fantasy, but I have always said I thought it would be fun to have a Christmas Tree farm and sell Christmas trees in the winter. I can just picture myself with one of my cute flower beanies and hot chocolate in hand helping someone pick the perfect tree.

I haven't given into the fake tree craze mainly because I love the way Christmas trees smell. I don't mind the mess or my dogs trying to drink the tree water as long as I can smell that tree after a long day at work. I think of it as an even trade I guess.
And I love sitting in the dark looking at the tree all lit up, it makes me so happy.

I got to indulge a little today because... this year I actually know someone with an adorable Christmas tree lot. Mr. Big dog's brother and wifey are selling trees!

Isn't their barn adorable with the wreaths all over it?!! After seeing how well they have things organized and perfectly set up, I began to realize more how my fantasy is a bit fanciful with all the hard work they have done to get the place in order. I probably wouldn't be sipping hot coco warming my hands by the fire as I waited for customers but rather I'd have to lift 200lbs trees while making sure all the lights are still working. I've always wanted a pair of carhartts anyway so I'm going to keep my fantasy with a slight wardrobe adjustment.

Going into a busy work week I plan to get my tree from them next weekend:) I didn't want to look at a naked tree all week in my family room. I'm looking forward to playing some Christmas music with a cup of cider or hot coco, on a relaxing weekend evening while I put up decorations with smell of a fresh cut noble fur in my living room.


But if you live in the Portland/Lake Oswego area...you can get a beautiful tree from them.

Jacobsen's Christmas Tree Farm
4756 Carmen Dr.
Lake Oswego, Or 97035

Thursday, November 25, 2010


So today for the first time maybe ever....I went snowboarding on Thanksgiving. It was great! The company, the weather, just to be not at work was all great.

And I packed us a Thanksgiving picnic:) Who says you can't have Thanksgiving while skiing?

The Menu:
Turkey sandwiches
(fresh turkey cut at New Seasons deli to sandwich size slices just had to ask with a smile)
Cranberry/Horseradish sauce on the sandwich (a recipe I got online)
Sweet Potato chips- again I love New Seasons and they are supposed to be healthier
Butternut squash soup preheated and stored in a Thermos (which stayed really hot for 5 hours)

And last but not least....mini pumpkin pies that I did actually make myself. I even brought extra and gave a couple out to some young girls nearby in exchange for some picture taking:)
We were at the legendary, straight from "The Shining" movie, Timberline Lodge.
So.....who doesn't want to eat their fabulous picnic in the beautiful lodge? And even though Mr. Big Dog stressed several times that he did not think you were suppose to bring outside food in, I of course just kept walking towards and into the lodge. What's the worst thing that could happen? I'll order a hot coco and they'll let us eat in the beautiful lodge for sure right?
So I have assembled the deluxe turkey sandwiches, soup is poured, bite in mouth when this manager looking guy (probably not however...just a bitter guy who had to work Thanksgiving at Timberline Lodge) comes up and says "outside food is not allowed in the lodge. " Mr. Big Dog of course was right, but due to Thanksgiving and a plea the manager did let us stay:)

So we had a blast! And even though we can never repeat our picnic legally due to lodge rules. I can't wait to go again.
It's fun to think outside the box about your menu and really make it special:)

Happy Thanksgiving everyone, I am so thankful for everyone and today:)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Actually growing up in Reno Nevada this this not very frightful...but Portlanders do seem to go into panic mode with any precipitation more severe and solid than rain. The hospital has been all a buzz worrying ahead of time about the possibility snow, because that means a possibility of people not being able to get to work.
I think nurses should have that postal motto....rain or shine, sleet or hail......your nurse will get to work. We work every holiday at the hospital, 24 hours a day. You always need a nurse.
However this little nurse will be turning off her phone and not wearing scrubs for 4 whole days starting tonight!

MY much needed break will be filled with snowboarding for the first time of the year, attending a baby shower, and cuddling up in front of a fire for an undetermined length of time.
Ahhhhhh, countdown is on! 10 hours till my mini vacation.....

Sunday, November 21, 2010

I have a girlfriend who told me if I wanted to find a good man I needed to write down everything I wanted in one. That I needed to be purposeful and really think about it.
So in a playful moment with her I wrote my list down a couple months ago. It was really just a game or distraction to my everyday woes at the time. I really wanted to fast forward through the tough part of my divorce. The everyday occurrence of the panicky thought that I would be alone forever was constant even though very irrational.

So here's my list.....

Considerate and thoughtful

Smart but not arrogant or too nerdy (aka boring)

Communicative (I'm not a mind reader so I like to know what you're thinking).....definite requirement

Must love dogs, do I really need to explain this

Financially stable, preferably with a job he likes and enjoys

Supportive of whatever I want to do even if he doesn't agree with it (and this also covers not being intimidated by the strong independent woman I am :) )

Loving, kind, and a lot of fun

Just someone I can be myself with. Which I realized was a serious issue with my past relationship.

After I wrote it all out I put it on my fridge....and I would just look at it every once in awhile.

It's not an unrealistic list, I think it is actually pretty well rounded.

What's funny is that I didnt' realize how fast I might find one:) So don't ask and put it out there unless you're ready for it to land in your lap ;)

Saturday, November 20, 2010


I swear I wish I was him right now. I am so tired from running between my two jobs and everyday life. Doesn't he look comfy?
That chair is actually not too terribly large....he crams himself in it:) Just make yourself comfortable Jay......

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I have a friend with a birthday today. She is turning 97 years old. She has been one of my dearest friends now for almost 10 years. She was my neighbor in college and I asked her to be my geriatric patient for a project in nursing school. It started out with a visit once a week to ask her medical history and ended up being a weekly afternoon date for tea. She is my adoptive great grandmother but really she's more of a friend.
It's funny I forget our age difference until she says something like "I remember when I used to be scared of cars, because I didn't know what one was" or "I used to take a ferry to school after walking 6 miles" or my favorite "I had the choice to take care of a lady's kids or get married to this gentleman who seemed pretty nice, so I married him."
It was just a different time. Women definitely did not have much of a choice in what they were going to do with their lives. They got married, had babies and took care of the house.

The next generation of women, my real grandmother's generation was truly the first generation to have a choice. To make a choice to also work. To have a career or take care of the house, or both.

I try to remember that women in the workplace is still a newer concept within the last 90 something years, which is a drop in the bucket in the grand scheme of timelines.
I think we need to be reminded of this every once in awhile when there is the dilema of what we really want and what we are doing.

As for Ella Thomas, she has is the exact person I want to be at 97. She volunteered at the Red Cross for 25 years until just a year and a half ago. She had dozens of foster children come through her house over the years, in addition to raising three of her own.
She is caring but also rigid if she doesn't agree with what you are saying or doing.
She is true to her word and a really great friend. She has always lent her ear when I needed it.

So Happy Birthday Ella! She says she's shooting for 100:)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

I feel like my heart is 3/4 of the way there. There being my whole self intact. It's just this pesky 1/4 pops up at the most inopportune times. I am sure it is normal, I just don't like it.

And I really don't like that I have no control over it. I just get this wave of frustration, like someone turned the light off for a split second and because of it I fell down a flight of stairs. Then the lights come back on and I am trying quickly to dust myself off and stand back up quickly before anyone notices.


Its funny how people close to you can really SEE you even when you don't want them too. I mean I THINK I am so concealing and secretive....trying to not show the wind being knocked out from that stumble down the stairs but its really out there for everyone to see.

Oh well, at least it's happening less and less:)
And at least the people close to me are understanding about it;)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Mr. Big dog was nice enough to let my three furry children and my mom's Big Yellow Dog (BYD) all come over for a visit today. While he finished some yard chores I decided to take on the challenge of walking them all. AT THE SAME TIME!
That is 5 dogs, one being Mr. Big dog's Saint Bernard. Look how small my mom's yellow lab looks next to him:) Honestly the hardest one to control was BYD, sorry mom he has issues on a leash.
Anyway, they are all good and tired now and I was asked if I were a dog walker 3 times. 5 dogs are way too many to have in a house at one time, but when they are good and tired....it is so much nicer.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Well I have been taking the bus like I said I would. I did end up driving two days out of 7, and those just happen to be the days I was 10 mins late. I guess depending on the bus really makes you more organized and on time.
I don't think to the naked eye you can tell I am a newbie to the big blue and white bus, but then again I am a newbie.

I do know that I gave a couple fellow mass transit riders some comic relief the other day.

Picture this: It is pouring. Raining so hard I thought it might just be Armageddon or a tsunami hitting Portland, Oregon. I was coming out of my last training class with my IPhone in hand. There is this dandy little app you can use to see the bus schedule and it even counts down to the bus arrival/departure time. So I was on a mission because the countdown was at 2 mins, and it even turns red. Oh how I didn't want to wait for the next bus, because this one I like comes only every 30 mins.

So back to the visual. Me distracted with the iPhone app, briskly walking in the pouring rain towards the bus stop up at the hospital. Then I see it, the bus I am needing. Oh no! I don't want to miss it! This is all going on in my my head mind you.
Staying out in the downpour for 30 more mins was not what I wanted, so now I start running. As I am running in the pouring rain, I was oblivious to the 30 something people in the line on the sidewalk near this special bus. As I got closer I realized the bus was not leaving and the all the people were not just standing there for fun. They had just gotten off the bus because it was BROKEN DOWN.
So these 30 people just watched me run to a broken down bus. I think everyone got a good laugh, even myself as I joined the line;) I think everyone could tell I was a newbie then for sure!

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