Monday, March 31, 2008

Big things may be happening

We looked at a house today. It's huge compared to what we're used to (3300 sq. feet). Four bedrooms. Could be 5 because there's a huge extra room that actually could be a master bedroom suite (there's a full bath off of it). Not really sure what we'd do with that area. Two and a half baths total. It's in the Back Mountain on a perfect large lot in a perfect area. It's getting ready to go into foreclosure, but it's not there yet. Looks like a short sale because it's very inexpensive for this area.

It needs a ton of cosmetic work (it's dirty, needs painted, a roof, carpets ripped out, etc.), but appears structurally sound to my untrained eye. I'm taking my dad and sister through it with the realtor tomorrow afternoon to see what they think because they are so much more experienced in this area. I've got myself all jazzed up and I shouldn't because of the ol' "if it looks too good to be true, it probably isn't" syndrome. I really think that someone who can see potential is going to snatch this baby up. I think it's probably going to be worth almost double the asking price when it gets prettied up.

I'm excited and scared all at once. Could I possibly step into fantastic luck again buying a house (I got this one through an Estate sale for dirt cheap)? I guess I'll find out soon...

Friday, March 28, 2008


Well, the tub surround is in and, oh, what a difference! We haven't painted above it, yet, so you can still see the drywall and Spackle. We're still deciding on a color...probably a yellow color...

On Tuesday Dad will return to start tearing off the tile on the side walls. The wall where the toilet, sink, and medicine cabinet are will be done last. We'll be buying a new, updated toilet that doesn't use 5 gallons of water every time it's flushed and a new medicine cabinet. I'm not sure about the sink. My sister loves this old sink and thinks we should keep it. The only other option is a pedestal sink because the heat vent is under the sink and we can't put a vanity over it. I'm not sure which would be better for resale...It seems the current sink would be incongruent with the rest of the bathroom updated, but I don't know...

Here is the before pic of the side and back walls:

The sink (please ignore the grime on it...I'm still not done cleaning up the mess from tearing out the walls):
So....we had a Supervisor meeting today. Apparently, my call-off on Sunday sent my DON over the edge because on Friday the 3-11 Supervisor had also called off. I told her that it's my 2nd call off in 5 years and to give me a break already. In the meeting she tried to discuss an "on call" schedule for the RNs. Ain't never going to happen. People flipped out because there's no good way to implement, or enforce, it. How are you going to make people come in if they're off? They just won't answer the phone. They already don't answer the phone. What if the on call person is sick? What are people supposed to do with their kids while on call? She kinda dropped the subject, but we'll see.
I told her, and everybody backed me (not for me, but because it affects them) that they need to hire a second RN for weekends to work the floor. That way when I'm on vacation or, God forbid, get sick they will have no worries. They can just pull the RN floor nurse to supervise. Problem freakin' solved. I also told her that they need to schedule an extra nurse on the weekends. Not just one per floor because when a single nurse calls off, that's 2 shifts that have to get covered because of our 16 hour shifts. If it doesn't get covered, then I'm stuck on the floor for 16 hours and that's not a safe situation.
I then brought up the fact that I was actually scheduled for the floor on Sunday (the DON did have to work 3-11 on Sunday when I called off but, as I predicted in my previous post, she got somebody to work so she wouldn't have to take the floor also) because she and the Administrator (and, yes, he was there when I said it) had caved in to the whining of the nurse that could have been bumped so I would have had enough nurses in the building. I told her that was bull (and I was backed by everyone on this issue, also). The Administrator was saying that it's not fair to bump the weekend nurse. I said, "So it's a better idea to not have enough nurses to cover the floors and the person in charge of the whole building has to take a floor?" My DON actually said to him, "I have to back Tami on this. It's her license on the line and she shouldn't have to take a floor if it can be prevented." MmmHmm. Tha's right, sista. They have reversed their previous decision and my nurses will be bumped, if necessary. Game, set, match. I win and all it took was one call off. Go me.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


Apparently the tiles that were jumping off my bathroom walls were only some deserters and not indicative of the wishes of the entire group because, y'all? Those suckers did not want to come off and fought us tooth and nail. It was so bad that Dad and I only removed the tiles around the tub (don't forget, the whole bathroom is done in thus hideous stuff). The rest will be for another time. My back and arms are killing me.

I probably shouldn't even be sharing these pictures of my disgusting bathroom walls and the only reason I am is because they're going whether they like it, or not. It's like a ReBath or Bathfitters commercial.


What it looks like right now:
What a mess! To be continued tomorrow...

Sunday, March 23, 2008

I'm not at work, my freakin' camera, and smokin'

I actually called off sick today because, well, I'm dyin' here. Not really, but gosh I hate being sick. I don't get sick very often and I always forget how bad it sucks. I toughed it out yesterday and went into work even though, A: I was sick and, 2: Kevin kept me up (because he was also sick) until 4AM when I had to get up at 6AM to go to work for 16 freakin' hours.

Now, I never call off. Seriously. I feel too guilty calling off. When I dragged my sorry butt into work yesterday, I was already regretting not calling off and then. Then I looked at today's schedule and I. Got. Pissed. Let me explain....In recent weeks my new DON and Administrator have set a precedence that they won't move the floor nurses around because of the incessant whining that, God forbid, they work a different floor. Now, don't get me wrong, I understand not wanting to move off of the unit you normally work. The problem comes when you can get somebody to come into work to cover a shift when you don't have a nurse to work a floor, but the person that is willing to come in will only come in for their regular floor. OK, they kinda have you over a barrel. After all, they don't have to come in. They will do us a favor and come in, but that would mean somebody gets bumped. It has always been that, in this situation, one of my nurses would get bumped. Sucks, but what are you supposed to do? I'll tell you what they decided to do when one of my nurses whined about it...they told her they wouldn't do it anymore. Where does that leave me as the supervisor? With no nurse for one of the floors, that's where. What did they figure would be a better solution than moving a nurse? Schedule me for the floor, that's what. The liability issue involved in this is scary. How am I supposed to supervise the building if I'm on a floor? Again, don't get me wrong. I've worked the floor in an emergency when someone has called off. I've actually done it quite a few times. The fact that this could have been avoided has me livid, though. If I wasn't sick, I still probably would have done it. I would've bitched about it, but I wouldn't have called off over it. The fact that I was sick and dragged my butt in there yesterday when most people, in their right mind, would have called off..because I would have felt guilty sticking them with no supervisor...and then to see they didn't give a crap if they stuck me...helped me get past most of my guilt today. I couldn't have physically or mentally been able to do a floor today. My DON probably had to go to work in my place today. I don't know for sure. I feel bad about that. I do. If she did, I'll bet anything that somehow, some way, she got somebody to work that floor. I'll bet she didn't have the floor and the House to supervise. If that's the case, then it just goes to show that they should have tried harder to get it covered for me. I guess I'll find out next weekend. They'll probably pay me back for this call off, but at least I'll be better by then (I hope) and be able to handle a floor without endangering someone in the process.

Vent #1 Over.

Vent #2 begins:

My camera is broken. How long have we had it? Probably just past the 90 day warranty. I bought it "refurbished" and still paid a good buck for it. I've never done that before and you can bet that I'll never do it again. I just ordered a new camera. I hope we like it. It's a Canon Powershot SD750k...anyone have one?

My final news is that I'm attempting to quit smoking again. Deep breath. I've quit twice before for over 5 months each time...long after the physical addiction was gone...and then had "just one". Huge mistake. It's my addiction and "just one" can't be for me. I can't be a social smoker. I'm glad I know this about myself now so I can avoid the mistake of thinking I can handle "just one". I do know how to be successful in quitting for myself. After all, I've done it twice before. It's staying quit that I have to master. It's more mental for me. I freakin' enjoy smoking. I know that y'all are probably grimacing, but *shrugs* that's just a fact. I enjoy the act of smoking, I enjoy the ritual involved in smoking, I enjoy the socialization of smoking. There ya have it.

Don't judge me, man.

Wish me luck....I'll let you know when I've had my last one (I have to quit by cutting down first and cutting out my "trigger" smokes).

Thursday, March 20, 2008


The number of nights Kevin has been in our arms forever. There were 208 nights of his life prior to that moment. He is officially longer with us than without us. How sweet is that?

Unfortunately, he is pretty miserable today. The cold that he had shaken off so fast, he gave to me and I, in turn, have apparently given it back to him. He woke up last night all congested again and I had to slather him all up in Baby Vicks before he could go back to sleep (that stuff works really well for him). He looks awful today and is just plain yucky.

Take a look:

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

What to do? What to do?

It seems like it's been forever since we began to look into moving, although it's only been a couple of weeks. I found out that buying the modular and putting it on a piece of land in the Back Mountain is financially impossible. I didn't realize that you must have a minimum of an acre to put in a septic system and what the cost of that would be in that area is prohibitive. We won't even mention the taxes. So now we're looking at existing homes in that area. I got a notice from my real estate agent of one that we're interested in seeing (even though it totally needs repainted inside...I'm so over the mauve thing), but I really want to do a drive-by on it first. We've done that on a couple of others that immediately made us rule them out. The pictures always make the house look in better shape than it actually is. At least so far. Problem is, my dad and sister are coming down tomorrow to begin the renovation of my current bathroom and I'm not sure how many days it'll take to get done. I'll probably be tied up the rest of the week, at least. Oh! Note to self...I need to remember to do a "before" and "after" pic!

I do not want to stay in this area. If I'm going to be stuck here, then I might as well just add on...


In other news, Kevin has his first cold since being home. The poor baby. He seemed better today than he was yesterday, though.

Do any of you moms still get those, "Holy crap, I'm a mom" moments? They come out of the blue on me sometimes. One hit me today as I was walking through the store with Kevin and I thought, "He's my son! I have a son!" Wow. Surreal, sometimes.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

My bad-ass boy

HAHAHA! I love this look!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Rain, rain, go away...

As I sit here listening to the never ending rain fall outside, I get nervous. I'm sick of this happening too often for comfort.

Back in 1972 (when y'all probably weren't even born) my family's home was one of the many homes under water from "Agnes". I know the storm affected many people, but our area was one of the hardest hit. I'll never forget waking up in the middle (or it seemed like the middle to a 9 y/o) of the night and hearing the radio playing in my parent's room. The newscaster was saying we must evacuate. The river was going to go over the banks. It was a sure thing. The flood made International news. I remember my dad and brother carrying everything they could upstairs to the second floor in the hopes that they could save some stuff. They succeeded for the most part because the river flooded only a couple of inches on the second floor of our house. I remember camping somewhere in the Back Mountain area while waiting for the waters to recede. My parents went back to the house without us, at first, to try to start the cleanup. Even so, I remember the horrible mess. The caked mud. The stink.

A few years later, my family moved to the Back Mountain area. No fear of flooding where we lived then. Snow? Yes. Flooding? No.

Eight years ago I bought this house. Right. Back. In. The. Flood. Zone. The Levy was raised since the '72 flood. Where I live it protects up to 38 feet. It was finished a few years back and I felt safe. I'm not actually considered to be "in the flood zone"...meaning that it is not mandated that I have flood insurance. Which, of course, means I don't. Every year about now I kick myself because, inevitably, the rains start. Last year was OK. The year before we made National news when we had a mandatory evacuation because of all the rain. The crest of the river was going to be close to topping the Levy. This was going to be the first time it was tested to see if it could withhold the pressure of the rising, raging river. It's a whole different ballgame looking at the situation as an adult rather than a 9 y/o kid. I was terrified. I mirrored what my brother and father did those so many years before. I carried everything I could upstairs while trying not to cry. It was an adventure when I was nine. It was a nightmare as an adult. We packed up some stuff and loaded up the dogs (where do you go with 3 dogs?). My mother offered her house, but all roads to her house were washed out by the creeks. Bridges were simply gone. We couldn't get there. Traffic in town was beyond belief with everyone trying to get out. Every single car I saw had someone in it on their cell phone. Including me. There was a point when the lines were overloaded and calls were having trouble getting through. My sister and brother offered their homes, but my sister wouldn't let the Pug in the house (she's such a sensitive soul). The dogs had to stay in the garage. That was fine for the big dogs, but not acceptable for the baby Pug. Roni took Katie and Cassie to my brother's house and they stayed over there while I stayed at my sister's with Carly and Annie. Did I mention that my brother and sister live in the Back Mountain? Yeah. They're the smart ones. At one point, work tried to call me in to help out with the evacuation. Um. Sorry. No. I was busy evacuating my own family. The kicker is...they knew where I live. Duh.

All this is to say that it is raining again. A lot. Two days ago, evacuations were going on in the low lying areas that did not participate in the Levy project (I don't get it, but whatever...) and the areas that couldn't be protected by the Levy. Again, the river is rising. Again, the ground is saturated. Again, the creeks are overflowing. Again, I watch the river. This is only the beginning of the "threatening" season. I'm sick of it. I want out. I want to be in the Back Mountain again. I pray I can find something that I can afford. A piece of land to put a modular on. A home in foreclosure. Something. Anything.

I'm tired of it...

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

A taste of Spring

Monday was the first decent day, weather-wise, this year and Kevin was jonesing to get outside. The poor kid has been all cooped up 'cause Mama hates the cold. He got so excited when I put his jacket on him because he knew he was finally going to get to go outside. Before I took him, this is what he looked like...pathetic, isn't it?

He also had his first try in the big boy chair for dinner, but it didn't last long...