Monday, September 3, 2007

A Nice Day For A Drive

Les felt much better when he woke up Sunday morning - yay!! I went and picked him up from a truck stop in Laurel and then we went to breakfast. We came home, picked up Ollie (who was nursing a wicked migraine) and went for a drive. We drove out to Ironwood which is a housing subdivision on the outskirts of Billings. There are HUGE, gorgeous houses up there and Ollie wanted to snap a few pics to send to her family back home. We really enjoyed driving around the entire subdivision, judging...ahem...I mean critiquing the homes and the landscaping. I cannot for the life of me figure out what all those people do for a living out here to own such fabulous homes, and I would love to know if I could get one of those jobs!!! We had so much fun that we decided to drive around and look at other neighborhoods to see what gems we could find. We found this cool place off RimRock Drive (sorry, taken through a dirty and cracked windshield - don't ask):

We thought it was super cool that they built this house around these MASSIVE boulders instead of dynamiting them into gravel. Can you think of a more secure place to have your deck? Very cool and extremely unique!

Well, Sissy's BBQ didn't turn out quite the way she had planned, but a great time was had by all. My aunt & uncle and cousins from the Seattle area were not able to come, Les wasn't there, but all the kids and grandkids showed up! Here are some pictures of my wonderful, fabulous and gorgeous family; please to enjoy.

My nephew Jeremy and his wife Erika


Kieran, monkey boy with popcicle lips

Sweet Kaya, always smiling!!

Poor Kyrell, played himself into a coma

My niece Alisha with youngest daughter, Taelynn

My nephew-in-law, Brock

Our precious Hannah

My niece, Reanna

Little Alex

Our sweet Emily

Brock's new toy - a custom made $14,000 electric guitar

Zac's new toy!

Oh Uncle Zac, take me for a ride!!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Stone VS Shock Waves

I am scheduled to have shock wave lithotripsy on Tuesday the 11th. The doctor says that my stone is definitely lodged in the beginning of the ureter; he showed me the stone on the x-ray and it is definitely a big bugger. I believe he described it as "impressive". Neat. I am going to play a trick on my Mom - after I have the procedure done, I'm going to get a rock out of the parking lot at work and send it to her. She just got this book on painting rocks...I think you can see where I am going with this. The doctor thought it was a great idea!

There are a couple different kinds of lithotripsy; the one I am having involves using shock waves that are directed at the stone that break it up into smaller pieces. He is going to insert a stint into my ureter (fun!) so that it will be a little wider and hopefully the pieces will pass along nicely. I will follow up a few weeks later for x-rays to see if all the pieces are out and then he will remove the stint. He said that I should recover just fine, but will probably feel like someone kicked the heck out of my kidney and that I may even have bruising on my skin.

I was telling Ollie that I must have been thinking about the procedure before I fell asleep the other night because I had a funny little dream about it. I dreamed that I walked into the operating room and was very impressed by all the modern technology and fancy equipment that they were going to use on me. They put me under, and then the doctor asked, "Is she out? Cool!" Then he and the nurses grabbed baseball bats and started whacking the heck out of my side! And they didn't use the more modern aluminum bats either; oooooh, no, they were totally old school and used the wooden Louisville Sluggers on me. I woke up laughing my head off.

Well, Les will be dropping by tomorrow morning; he is a long haul truck driver and always stops in Billings when he is on his way through. Sometimes he only has time to take me to breakfast or dinner, and sometimes he will spend the night or a few days. He doesn't have to be in Spokane until Tuesday, so he's going to spend the day and the night here with Ollie and me. He isn't feeling very well; it seems that he either has food poisoning or a stomach flu - let's just say if he could figure out how to swallow some plaster of Paris to plug off a certain orifice, he would be much happier. Poor Les!

Les in Red Lodge April 2007

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Bummin' 'Bout the BBQ

Well, poop. I won't get to go to Sissy's BBQ this weekend after all. Aaaand, speaking of poop:

I had to go in on Monday for a CT/IVP (series of xrays and a cat scan, then the same tests again after being injected with dye). I have had a massive kidney infection (so the doctor thinks) for about a month, so after being on strong antibiotics for a month they wanted to repeat this test to see if the infection had gone away. They had also reported a stone in the kidney about the size of a nickel. They wanted me to repeat the procedure so that they could see the progress of the infection and see what that stone was up to. I don't mind the procedure at all; heck, anything to be away from work!! I absolutely HATE the prep for the test. For the whole day before you have to have liquids only (a minimum of 12oz every hour - a lot for me; I'm lucky to drink 12oz a DAY!) plus take three different laxatives! Whee! What fun!!

I decided that since I had to do all that yucky stuff, I might as well try to get something positive out of it. I know - I will see just how much weight I lose by a day on an all liquid diet plus frequent trips to the pooper! I figured two to three pounds. When I weighed myself Monday morning, I found that..............wait for it........I had GAINED A POUND!!! What the...???? I pee and poop myself senseless for THIS??? The scale is now officially working for the other side. Sigh. I have PCOS (poly cystic ovarian syndrome) so I often have swelling of my feet and ankles, especially on the right side. My right foot was HUGE on Monday morning, so I figured that my foot alone probably weighed three pounds. The nurse at the hospital agreed with me, so there. Pfffft.

The doctor called me Tuesday morning with the results: good news - infection has reduced considerably, but he wants me to take another round of antibiotics. Bad news - that stinkin' stone is on the move and has left the kidney and is in the ureter now. He said there is no way I can pass this stone. I have an appointment to see him today at 3:30; they will take an X-ray to see if it has moved at all and I will probably have to go in to the hospital on Tuesday to have the stone blasted. It's a day surgery under general anaesthesia, but no cutting is involved. Yea! I will probably be off work for a day or two (yea again!). I will know more for sure today.

So, because of the unpredictability of the stone, I cannot go to Sissy's this weekend. Probably nothing will happen, but I just don't want to be in Spokane or Moses Lake and have the stupid thing decide to really start trouble. Hospitals are too far away at those junctures, and I especially don't want it to kick in when I am at Sissy's. Poor Sis; Les will not be home for the BBQ after all, and so he won't get to be with the family either. They are both super bummed out.

By the way, the LL still has not come back to finish the atrocious job he started with the front door; the old one is still leaning up against the house, terrible peeling paint job still showing.

Sigh. Stupid stone.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Front Door Saga, part II; Labor Day is a-comin!

Well, I got home from work yesterday and the door was still leaning up against the house. The trim had all been put back on, but now there needs to be new paint put on the house around the door, inside and out. No word on if the LL is coming back to do it, or when.

I cannot wait to go to Sissy's for her Labor Day BBQ! I am so sick of dealing with the socially retarded and just want to have some fun for a change. All of the kids and the kid's kids will be there, including some cousins I haven't seen in a while, and my favorite aunt and uncle from Sultan, WA. I will be posting pictures from the BBQ so you can see my lovely family!

I am also just looking forward to the trip itself. Instead of flying, which I detest because I am too fat to sit comfortably, I am going to drive. Driving is always my travel of choice. So, I will leave Friday at Noon and should arrive in Onalaska, WA sometime around midnight or 1am. I only stop for gas - ask Sissy! She is lucky if I pull over and let her pee. I am the road trip QUEEN!!!!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

My Landlord Is A Twat

I am so incredibly pissed off right now I can hardly type. Or think.

After 2 1/2 years of asking, begging, pleading and threatening, my landlord finally came over today to put in a new front door that has a deadbolt lock on it. Yes, as long as I have lived in this duplex, I just had one of those doorknobs that you push in and twist to lock - on the FRONT DOOR. Most people have more secure locks on their bathroom doors! I know this is Billings, but being a single woman and all, I just wanted a leetle more security than that, you know? I mean, when you drive down the street here, you can see every one's front doors; mine stuck out like a sore thumb because you could see that mine was the only one without a deadbolt lock on it.

So, he calls me at work to tell me that he is on his way over to the house. I called Ollie from work to warn her so that he didn't walk in on her in her underwear or something. She called me about an hour later to tell me what a twat he is. She kept going on and on and on about how much she hates this guy (she was totally preaching to the choir - I wrote the book on hating his man) and what a jerk he is. Apparently he had tried to call me at work while I was at lunch so he could tell me what a horrible housekeeper I am. I finally got her off the phone and was stewing for a while. Then, she called me again towards the end of the day to say that he didn't finish it all today and would have to come back again tomorrow - needless to say, she wasn't thrilled. She said that the key that unlocked the back door (the one totally obscured from the world, that door has a deadbolt) would also unlock the front door now. I said, "What did he do? Just put the lock from the back door on the front?" "No, it's the same kind of lock, so the key will open both." Wow! I feel so much more secure now!! Imagine: anyone with the same lock as mine will be able to open my front door with their key! JOY! The other problem was that the key I had for the back door didn't actually open the back door. I told her not to leave the house until I got home, and get that key from him so we can copy it.

I get home, and see that he has parked his pickup truck on my front lawn. The lawn I have to pay someone $100 a month to mow for me because I am not physically able to do it myself. The lawn that he is constantly ragging on me about to take care of. Who knew that parking a two ton metal machine that drips transmission fluid and synthetic oil all over the place would be good for the grass?? Silly me - women just don't know anything! Ollie came flying (literally) out of the house and said, "Park the truck; we're taking my car." So, we get into her fabulous car and she roars off practically before I can get my door shut. I hit my head on the windshield as she slows to negotiate a curve in the road because I am too fat to wear the seat belt in her fabulous car. We go to ACE Hardware where three apathetic teens try to ignore us as we stand in their direct line of sight at the key kiosk, but I am having none of it. "Get over here and copy this key," I grumbled and thrust it at the closest gene pool disaster. He takes it from me disdainfully as his co-workers snicker away; then nearly has a seizure when he realizes that now he will have to actually do the rest of his job by ringing up the copies and allowing me to give him money for them.

We drive back home, and the LL has left. He also left the old front door laying in the middle of the lawn. It compliments the tire tracks beautifully. The new door has supposedly been freshly painted; apparently by a blind person with an eyeshadow applicator. It is a total mess. The (white) inside of the door has black scuff marks all over it that make it appear as though he has included it on his list of favorite things to park his truck on. I went outside for a few minutes to enjoy the back porch that the LL made Ollie feel obligated to go out and sweep the leaves off of. It looks nice. The garbage bag of leaves was still on the porch, so I took it around the front and put it in the trash can (which I forgot to set out this morning because when I left for work, I thought it was Friday. Stupid, stupid girl.). I came in the house, bolted into my bedroom, shut the door, striped off all my clothes, sat on the edge of the bed, and cried. After about a half an hour, I put some cruddy clothes on and went out in the front yard to pick up the door off the grass. I leaned it against the front of the house, which the LL will probably hate. Then I came in here and started typing. I feel better now. Thanks.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Brand New Shiny Blog

Wow, my first blog entry. It seems a shame to mess up this pristine page. Oh well.

I love blogs. You get to learn so much from people you don't even know. People from all different walks of live, backgrounds, family situations; even though we are all different, I find that I have so many things in common with so many people. I love reading about their lives (ok, living vicariously through some of them), where they live, etc. Some are personal friends that I actually know, others are people that I just feel like I know after reading about some of the things they have gone through. I will be honest; I started a blog once before and didn't really do anything with it. I didn't like the way it worked - I couldn't post any of the pictures I love! That and my internet connection was only basic dial up, so it would take FOREVER to get anything done. So, I promise to try to do better with this blog. I may not have something to post every day, but I will try to post every week (stop laughing).

I absolutely adore taking pictures. I finally moved into the 21st century this year when my beloved Sissy bought me a totally kick ass digital SLR camera, complete with super nifty lens. Since nothing has really happened this week, I give you the following pictures from my personal gallery to ponder. Please to enjoy:
Poppies growing along the road; Roberts, MT

Peekaboo deer; Nye, MT

Ducks at Riverside Park; Billings, MT

Stillwater River; outside of Nye, MT