Thursday, July 23, 2009

July 26

I just happened to be looking at my side bar over there---> and noticed that I started this blog back in 2006. I had wondered sometimes just how long I had been doing this but never looked. I went so far as to scroll down to find out what day I started...July 26! That's coming up soon! YAY! me, I'll be three soon! And my, how things have changed. I was in between jobs back then. I didn't yet have the job I have now. That was to happen a little over a month later.
So much has changed. I have met new people, reconnected with some from my past, and disconnected with some. My girls have grown. They've made me mad, made me smile, but always made me love them.
There have been babies born, christened, started walking and eating big people food. My extended family has grown by two. My closest friends have become grandparents. I even became a grandma...surprising!
I got rid of an old dilapidated car and bought my little truck. I have repaired it a few times. I have owned three washing machines and two dryers, and repaired those countless times (yes, in three years!)
I have gone on long weekends to my dad's cabin, lost sleep in an uncomfortable bed and gotten a little sun burned because I forgot how long I was in the sun.
I have lost a few pounds, but always gained them back and they brought some friends when they returned. My hair has grown long and turned gray.
I've gone kayaking, but not as much as I would have liked. And I vow to go soon as the racks get on my truck.
I have connected with a world outside my own. I have made friends here in the blogosphere. I have learned so much from the people who care to share their lives with me in these posts. My heart has been broken for others' losses and I have also rejoiced in their happiness. I have seen many places that otherwise I would not have seen. I have learned to share in a different sort of way. I have sent out prayers for hope and strength and healing, I have received prayers as well.
Yep, three years. It's not long in the scheme of things, but when you look back at all that has gone by, it seems to have had a lifetime of happenings. I know there is so much more to come. I am looking to the future with hope and optimism. I want to think that everything will be alright.
So here is to the next three years and the three after that and the three after those. It's been a thrill to meet you all, and I hope we can have continued good friendships over the innernets...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Plumbing 102...or...202, I don't know!

In our last class session we learned how to not turn off water at the source. We also learned how to get a man to drive probably ten minutes from where he was working to turn a knob we could have turned ourselves had we not been told that breaking said knob would make us responsible. (Who the heck WANTS to be responsible???)
In Plumbing 102 or 202 we will learn some new vocabulary words. Most of these words should not be used in public. Hell, I even made my own face turn red a coupla times, when I said these words!
I think I left off at letting the bolts that hold the toilet down didn't work. I said a few of those words. Got out my trusty little Dremel tool. (Ladies, this is a tool you all need to have in your household. It will do everything but wash the dishes!) I cut off the damned bolts. My MD and I set the tank on a towel on the toilet bowl and proceeded to be amazed at how much crud accumulates where you can't reach. We sprayed that bugger all over with bleach and water. Then we sprayed it again for good measure.
I looked to see what it would take to get the actual drain thingy out of the hole in the tank to put the new one in. I looked high and low for just the right tool and found I was fresh out of dynomite. (dynamite? well, okay, TNT) Picked up the trusty Dremel. I cut that thing off..with a vengeance, and a few little cut off blades. They break easily.
Got that out, MD proceeded to scrub the crud off. Made it sparkle, like a new toilet. Okay, a fairly new toilet.
The we had to reverse all our previous actions. This was the easy part. Clean tank, new parts,everything was where it was supposed to be at the time it was supposed to be there. It went together like a two year olds' five piece puzzle. NICE!
Turned the water back on, no leaks. Adjusted the little chain thingy, tightened the handle just a little.
Flushed it...

It acted just like a toilet would act. Water went down the bowl, tank filled up handle positioned itself, BY. ITSELF. No freakin' noise!!! YES!
I'm starting my own business. Claudia's No Cracks Plumbing. Think about it! (snicker, snicker)
Bad words were omitted, cause even though I say them IRL, I find it hard to type them unless I am rully rully pissed.
BTW.. I slept ALL night, no toilet serenade to keep my eyes open!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Plumbing 101

I'd show you pictures, but it's a little gross...not real gross, but ya know when you can't get to something to clean, but the dirt and grime can get there to mess up? It's that kind of gross.
I got up this morning all fired up and rarin' to go. Got my coffee, sat at the computer and then started dreading tearing apart the toilet. I mean really, I have to tear the toilet apart! The tank thing on top has to come off in order to fix the flush valve, which is what has been keeping me awake nights. Weeeee ch, ch, ch, ch Weeeeeee
I finally relented and got dressed. Then swore a little cause I really, really did not want to go out and shut off the water to the house. I don't know why that bugs me, but I hate having to shut the water off. And then I couldn't shut it off. The valve at the house doesn't work anymore. So I went out to the meter to shut it off and the shut off valve is covered in about six inches of dirt! (How do they read the meter then?) I called the water company to ask them just that and she told me I wasn't supposed to shut the water off at the meter by myself, because if I damaged it, I would be responsible. How a simple thing like that would make me responsible after all these years I will never know. Oh and then she told me they have some magic wand thing that reads the meter. No more pulling off the cover and actrually looking at the numbers. (I'm surprised it doesn't just go on their computers and then lick the envelope to send the bill in the mail for them)
She sent a man over to shut the water off at the meter and I got the usual lecture about doing it myself. I told him to marry me and then I would be able to afford to hire a real plumber to come and do this all for me. I'm capable even if I am JUST a woman! Excuse me, but I have the tool to shut the water off, and all the man did was get out his tool that looked just like mine and turned the little knob thingy just like I would have done. Hmmm. Wow, I can't believe that people have to go to college or trade school to learn that stuff.
So, water off, toilet tank drained. I start to pull of the angle stop to replace. It is the reason I couldn't just shut the water off at the toilet, it's old. When I took it off, I panicked because the pipe it is attached to is looking like it came from Roman times. Old, rusty and in need of replacement which would require a real plumber, and apparently I am allergic to real plumbers.
I said a little prayer, bit the bullet and ran down to my local hardware store, where I used to work several years ago and where I haven't stepped foot since the ass laid me off. But I had to go there, because even though the water was shut off there was still a tickle coming in and I had no time to waste.
Got the new angle stop and a new supply line and asked the owner who is also known as the ass, if there is a possibilty of fixing the now rusted out 1/2" galvanized pipe coming out of my wall if there is a tiny bit of thread left on it. He assured me it could be salvaged if I just bought a $15 tool. "Sell it to me!" Shit, I'm bleeding money here!
Came home, put on my contortionist costume and proceeded to finish what I started. The angle stop did go on as promised! YAY! I now have a shut off to my toilet once again...Did I say YAY! yet? I unscrewed the first set of nuts that hold the toilet tank on to the bowl, and got the tank off. Herein lies the mess. Things were disintrigating back there. Nothing that can't be replaced...which is why I am doing this. The disintrgation is what has been causing the toilet to sing.
Now I am at a spot where I needed a little help from my favorite can of WD40. The second set of nuts don't want to come off easily, so I am soaking them for a while.
Be prepared for Plumbing 102 in the near future. Take notes, there will be a quiz later.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Why is it that everything I own, that has anything to do with water, is leaking right now??? Why???
I had the washing machine experience over my weekend, now the toilet. The shower is always giving me fits.
Last night the toilet decided to sing to me sweet love songs of the toilet type. Except I am not a toilet, so I don't really appreciate the songs. Weeee Ch, Ch, Ch, Ch...weeeeeee, Ch, Ch, Ch, Ch...that was 12:30. I got up and fixed it. 2:30 AM Weeeeeeeeeeee, Ch, Ch, weeeeeeeeeee, Ch, Ch, Ch, weeeeeeee, got up, fixed it. Finally went back to sleep at 3AM.
Alarm went off at 5AM, I hit the snoozer til around 5:40, and then got up figuring I had better get a move on if I was going to be to work on time.
I had to be there at 8.
Got ready, looked at the clock and freaked out, I was sure I was going to be late. Got going, drove fast (but safely) to work. I pulled up next to the store and thought to myself, "Why the hell is the store closed???" I looked at the clock in my was 6:45, not 7:45. I was an hour early.
I told my co-worker I was not going to wait an hour to clock in so that I would have to work an hour later. He clocked me in at 7. I left at 3:30.
I was going to fix the toilet when I got home, but now the damned water to the toilet won't shut off. Hopefully, I can keep that devil quiet until Monday when I can just shut the water off to the entire house and replace the angle stop, water suppply line, and the flush valve.
Then again, I may install an outhouse!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I'm all about the drama.

Just a few things...little notes.
Because I am all about the drama I wait until the last possible minute to do N.E.THING! I just want any one who hasn't already, go over to Hallie's blog at Wonderful World of Weiners and donate to her fund raiser for Organ Donation. You can read all about the story behind the fund raiser there. (Take tissues with you, it is a very heart warming and tugging at the heart story.) Also, be prepared to get addicted to her blog, she is all about the funny, informative and just plain fun reads!

The next foot. I have been asked by a few as to how I am doing, what the doc said about my foot and what I am doing.
I'm doing as well as can be expected. Some days are good, others not so much. BUT...the foot does feel a bit better than it has in the past few months. The doctor told me that what I have is a tight achilles MUSCLE. The tendon is fine, but the muscle that is over the tendon is pulled so tight that it is making my foot curl under itself so to speak. If you look at your right foot, while you are sitting with your foot flat on the floor, picture the muscle from the back of your calf going down and under the heel then towards the arch of your foot. Now picture that muscle pulling up and you get a foot that is turning under towards the inside. (Confused enough?) Since our feet want to be flat on the floor, and not turning under it makes for pain when you are standing on them all day. Which is what I do.
She gave me excercises to do and I take a anti-inflammatory medication once a day. Then I am supposed to get a pair of really, really good shoes and an ankle brace. Right now, since I have missed work (without pay) I can't afford the shoes and ankle brace. But I can afford the excercises. The meds are covered, so I am taking those. Plus I can never, never go barefoot again or wear any of those cute little flip flops I like to wear occasionally or my slippers. But I cheat on those every night, I just don't walk around in them like I used to. Oh yea, and I can't walk for excercise. I need to swim. Which means I need to get a, yea...

The x-rays of my foot showed a hammer toe, bunnion, (I don't know if those are the same or not) mild athritis and degeneration of some of the bone in my big toe. Apparently those don't hurt me. Go figure!
I am trying to get back on Weight Watchers, because I know if I get some (or all) of my excess weight off, that will help immensely. The thing with that is, I am so damned stuck in my ways and I can't get it through my thick skull, that I would feel better, and it should be an easy thing to do. I mean hell, in my twenties I would get a burr up my ass about my weight and fast for a week and not blink an eye!
Anyway, that's about it. Thank you for commenting and asking. It is nice to know that we have built up a community of friendship across the blogophere. See you on the internets!

Monday, July 06, 2009

The Foot From Hell

I still am not convinced that anything from the ankle down will ever feel good again.
I am fresh back from the Podiatrist. She was great and all, and actually spent some non-rushed time with me, but I have heard so many things from so many doctors that I don't know who to believe anymore. You'd think that because this doctor is a PODIATRIST I'd want to believe her the most. But for some reason I am skeptical.
I didn't think at all that I would get out of this with my pocket book unscathed, but I have spent far more on this foot than any other body part so far. Nothing has helped. Now, the podiatrist is telling me I need to buy more, and more costly things for this one foot.
Now I need to go out and buy shoes that are over $120 and some ankle brace that is $30. There are still excercises I need to do. She said swim, for other excercise, no walking for that. (Um, they JUST closed the local pool down for renovations, I know, my daughter worked there.) She wants me to drive 15 miles away to go to the next pool. Um. NO!
I am reluctant to spend the money on all this other stuff, because I have spent enough money already that hasn't done anything but make my pain last longer. The appointment alone cost me $50. She sent me home with a nice list of where to get the shoes and wonderful (insert sarcasm here) pictures of the excercises. Those I will do, they are free. I guess I HAVE to buy the shoes and the brace, cause I can't go back to her when it all doesn't work and give her that look, if I don't at least waste my money.
Have I ever said before that I HATE Kaiser-Permanente? If I haven't, let me say that here and now. I HATE Kaiser-Permanente!

Sunday, July 05, 2009

And the decision was...

Clearlake! Yes I went. My OD drove so I got to watch anything I wanted, leaving watching the idiots on the roads to her.
It was hot, it was fun, noisy, hot, and sis I mention that it was hot there?
We got there late Friday night, and of course did not get to sleep til much later. I slept on a folded up futon. (The arthritic hip is PISSED) Got up way too early, the sun peaked in the window directly at my eyes at 6AM.
We went and played with the dogs in the water. (I didn't get in the water) But the dogs had a blast chasing their after their balls, tennis balls that is.
Went to bed far too late Saturday night and up again early this morning. We unfolded the futon this time (hips not as angry this morning)
We left there early to beat the worst heat driving and got home around 2:30 this afternoon. I took a much needed nap on my couch and then got up and took a much needed shower.
I am refreshed, mind and body. (Although, still tired and a little sore)
Tomorrow is my podiatrist appointment. Let's hope this doc has some fantastic fix, cure, whatever, to make my feet happy feet again!

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Why Can't I Make A Damned Decision???

So...the 4th of July is here! YAY!
I had plans to go to "My Lake". I had to take last Sunday off. I was planning to take Saturday and Sunday off this weekend, and spend four days at the lake. After going to the doctor a few weeks back, I ended up with an appointment with the podiatrist (finally) and the only appointment available was Monday, of course. So four days at the lake was out. I decided that since I really couldn't afford three unpaid days off in the same pay period, I would work Saturday, have Sunday off go to the doctor Monday and use Tuesday as my usual deep cleaning day around the house. No lake. :(
Then my OD started trying to talk me into going some where for a day trip. She's off all next week and staying home isn't her thing. We discussed, I vetoed, we discussed more. I said no, I can't afford this. But I DO want to see my lake again, feel the heat, listen to my Dad's girlfriend's roudy family be, well, loud, laugh, relax and just sit.
Now, I'm thinking that it is only one pay period that I would be a little more broke than usual. I've had less money than that at other times, because of illnesses, I cannot pass up a 4th of July at the lake again. (Although I had to last year) And I could bring my Dad a watermelon! Just kidding, he doesn't care for watermelon.
I could conceivably go up Friday night, spend Saturday and most of Sunday, come home go to my DR appointment and do the usual on Tuesday. Or work Saturday go up after work, getting there at around dinner time...(he he) spend most of Sunday, etc., etc. I don't know. We'll see how I feel Friday after work. or today after work, cause no matter what we have to pack up the truck.
Any thoughts?