Monday, July 20, 2015

New Home Ahoy!

We are on the verge of signing for our new house! I'm simply waiting for the email to tell me what time, hopefully today, possibly tomorrow. Yesterday, we purchased a fancy, expensive mattress, and got a good deal on a gas stove. The mattress was 2k!! I justified it by citing years of backaches sleeping on our current bed. I hope I'm right. We did find a free bed frame on Craigslist, however. It's simple, solid wood, & in good condition. We can paint & distress it, if that's the way we decide to go with our bedroom furniture. We still need dressers, but we can make do with the things we have for right now.

I feel like I'm simmering with excitement. The prospect of having our own space again - and such a nice space!!! I'm even excited to do the repairs & fix up the things we want changed! We bought fancy window dressings for the bedroom, livingroom, and kitchen. I feel so adult. Today, I need to get new sheets for our king bed & new knobs for the house! I don't know how to drill a hole for a deadbolt, but I'm about to find out!

I just watched a little news report on the guy who wrote Wheat Belly, Dr. Davis. It was on my list of books to read, but now I'm wondering how valid his science is... I've been thinking recently that it might be processed foods & not wheat that I need to eliminate. I found out that Nate & Amber eat everything from scratch at home. That's inspiring. Before we moved, I'd made a quiet commitment to myself that I would take charge of our eating habits, & make sure we ate better here. I think I might eliminate all processed foods after we move, & make whole meals with a focus on veggies the reality for us. I won't be a whiner anymore! I know it is a habit that will benefit us until the day we die, and it will get easier to implement if I just stick to it. I only work 3 days a week, for fuck's sake! This will be my next project. Within that project, I intend to find out if cutting out wheat is really a good thing. I need to do real research, using real science (duh). I just trusted my acupuncturist, but I don't know where she got her information, and she's not available to ask. I guess I'll keep at it, since it does seem to help, and do the research after moving in to our NEW HOUSE!!!!

So. Excited.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Philip's Birthday Weekend

This weekend, we went to the Oregon Coast for Philip's birthday. It was a wonderful weekend!! We woke up at 6am & drove out through the Tillamook Forest.
We stopped at Oceanside & played on the beach with the doggies. We found a tunnel through the cliff that took us to another beach, then walked around a rocky outcropping to find a small, totally secluded beach. We let the pups off leash & ran around like maniacs. It was a beautiful, cloudy, chilly coast day - the best kind.


 Then, we happened upon Cape Meares & the lighthouse there. We also walked over to the Octopus Tree. It was our first lighthouse ever!

We went to Tillamook & had a beer with Rachel & Abe at DeGarde Brewing. We also went to the Tillamook Air Museum. It reminded me of Grandaddy.

We didn't have any luck finding a camp site that night, but Philip found an old driveway that hadn't been used in a long time. We pulled the car around the bend & camped hidden from the road. The puppies had fun exploring, and we even had a young buck visit. It rained over night.

The next day, we went to Astoria, home of the Goonies! Of COURSE we went to see the Goonies House. We also checked out the Flavel House Museum, the jailhouse, and just drove through the gorgeous little town. We had lunch in a park. We decided to save the Maritime Museum for another time, because it was getting too hot to leave the pups in the car.

We also went to see the Astoria Column, which was closed for renovation. The view was amazing, though, and we hiked down to Cathederal Tree.

That night, we decided to get a hotel room, and ended up at Tolovana Inn in Cannon Beach. It was right on a beautiful stretch of beach, and right next to Mo's. We walked on the beach for a long time, playing with the puppies, then got some chowder, rented Goonies, and used the grill at the hotel to cook our camp meals.

The next day was Philip's birthday! We drove back to Portland after a walk on the beach. 

After unpacking & cleaning up a freaking ton of dog poop out of the yard, we met Orion & V for birthday dinner at Screen Door. It was so delicious & a perfect end to a wonderful weekend.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Heat Wave

The unusual heat wave has finally broken! It was downright chilly last night, and today is just lovely. I am so thankful, and I hope this lasts until the usual summer month of August. At least then we'll be in our new house & can retreat to the coolness of the basement! Only 17 more days until Moving Day! I can't wait! I got to talk to Jermz today, and I'm so excited about the prospect of hosting visitors. I can't wait to have Nick & Jo up here, & John Paul. This weekend is Philip's birthday! We tried to book a camping spot on the coast, but they are all booked up. Like every single one. So are the hotels!! Instead, we're going to just head out that way & hope to find a dispersed camping spot in the Tillamook Forest. I'm glad we weren't able to find a spot in the campground. They're so crowded, I think it wouldn't be fun. I prefer to camp alone, away from people. I bet the dogs will have a blast! I've been having a really tough time at work. I guess it's because I'm new & inefficient, but I'm struggling to keep up with my daily tasks, and I'm not coming up with good solutions to problems. I hope the next few shifts are better, but right now I'm feeling discouraged.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

'Merica Y'all

Today is the 4th of July! We intended to go downtown to see the big firework display, but ended up going to the ridge in Sellwood & watching the show at Oaks Park. It was pretty magnificent. The best part was when the crowd spontaneously started singing The Star Spangled Banner together. We were there with Orion & V - our family away from family. I don't know how I feel about the USA right now. There have been some wonderful (gay marriage legalization) and terrible (TPP sneaking past) things happening. Our people are so divided, it seems we'll never agree on anything ever again. There's so much hate & bigotry being spewed out through the semi-anonymous internet forums... It's disheartening. My family raised me to love this country, and I do. I hope for a better, more enlightened & more compassionate future for our people. The house progress is very exciting! The sellers accepted our repair addendum with almost no changes. We're getting nearly 10k in credits, 5 of which will come off of our closing costs. This will help so much, because the repairs needed are many. It feels daunting, but I know a house built in 1925, which has been maintained so poorly, will have things wrong with it. I'm grateful we're in a position to have the repairs done, not like last time, where we had NO money for fixing anything. 22 days until we can move in!

Saturday, June 27, 2015


Today was my first day all on my own at work. I got really behind at the beginning of the shift & spent the whole day trying to catch up. Plus, one patient had chest pain & another needed IV hydralazine. I finally managed to squeeze a lunch in at 4. Still, I managed to get most of the things done, & I left almost on time! I know I will be up to my usual standard after a few weeks. It feels really awkward & frustrating right now. The team I work with is really wonderful. I'm extremely lucky to have taken a job on a unit that has the kind of culture I'm used to. It's freaking HOT here right now. I'm SO over the damn heat & sunshine. I feel really disgruntled that we came right before an unusually hot summer. I can't wait for the clouds to come back! Philip went camping at Crater Lake this weekend, with Nate & Amber. I'm so jealous! I was supposed to go, but I got the distinct impression it would not be good to try to rearrange the schedule they made for me. Yesterday, the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage in the United States. I was blissfully stunned. I didn't know if it would happen during my lifetime, but it did! Is society truly progressing toward tolerance? I don't know, there's still a lot of hate out there. So much violence, so much murder & mayhem. But for one day, Love won, & my FaceBook feed was FULL of rainbows. It was wonderful.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Inspection Day

See, now I've already gone & fallen off the journal writing goal.Yesterday was such an exciting day, too! We met the inspector at the house to find out all the dirty details. It was daunting, but Lee was kind enough to put it into perspective. It sounds like, though there are some concerns, these aren't things he's surprised to see in a house of this age & type. Of note (from him & other sources): -Underground oil tank, with no record of being decomissioned -Underground mystery tank -Ground-level garage walls (risk of water coming in) -Shoddy electrical work that needs minor repairs -Shoddy plumbing work that needs minor repairs -Support structures that need to be reinforced (nothing weird, mostly just the rising weight of roofing material without compensatory weight-bearing structures) -Almost no grounded plugs (damnit) Of course, when I read the report it was overwhelming. I have to keep reminding myself that this house is from 1925, & it's going to have plenty of issues, that this is common. So, the negotiations begin. Tomorrow, Rachel's contractor will come out & make bids on all the repairs so we can form a plan for what we will request they take on & what we will be willing to take on. The Radon came back 2.0 (yay), and the mystery tank turned out to be an old water cistern, already filled in. I hopehopehope they don't balk at decommissioning the oil tank. That's the only thing that might be a deal breaker. Rachel said there's a bit of a language barrier between her & their realtor, but hopefully that won't prevent good negotiations. And so we wait.

Monday, June 22, 2015


I've been hearing all of these news reports & stories lately about memory & how keeping a journal can help with mental acuity as one ages. I'm terrible at journaling. I know lots of people who religiously journal. I think it's amazing. It makes me think about Anne Frank & all the historical records we have from lifetimes ago. When I read back over my journals, I just thought about what an idiot I was & that every word I put down was absolute drivel. Maybe that's okay, though. So what if the thing I discovered about myself through journaling was that I'm shallow & have weird dreams? I guess that's self-realization on some level. I burned those journals, however, so some curious person decades in the future doesn't get a glimpse into the young life of Jenn (thank goodness). So I'm thinking about keeping a quiet blog, if I can manage it. Maybe I'll find I'm just as shallow & boring as I was back then, but at least I'll be able to read back & remember being that way when I'm senile. So, today was my last precepted day at work. I worked the last 4 hours of my shift solamente. My preceptor was there, just doing things in her other role & not watching over me. I felt flustered & I'm sure I forgot some things. I hope my first full shift will have a better flow. I think it will be easier when I'm the only one organizing my day, and when people look to me as the primary nurse for my patients, instead of deferring all communication to the familiar nurse. That gets frustrating. I have until Saturday to psyche myself up for the task. It seems like a good idea to include photos, so here's one of me!
I look a little tired, because I am, but it shows how long my hair is now, which is a new thing for me. So. Off to bed then.