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Sunday, December 29, 2013

This Week I Learned...

... that even if you don't have medical insurance, when you cough hard enough to throw up / feel it in six-and-a-half-year-old C-section scars / get a six-year-old telling you that if you can't even shout at her you must be sick... then it's time to go to the doctor.

... that because I am an existing patient at the Evergreen Healthcare Network (Lizzy was born at Evergreen Hospital), I get a 10% discount on self-pay office visits to Urgent Care. I call this the Frequent Flyer Discount.

... that because I have no insurance  (it kicks in January first, natch) I get an additional 15% discount if I pay it within 30 days. They will bill me so I didn't have to pay it today.

... that all the help I got, pharmaceutically speaking over the past few days wasn't really doing a lot of good, because my blood oxygen level was so low (about 89-90%) that the prednisone and albuterol and whatever is in the coughing-aching-sneezing-sniffling-stuffy-head-fever-so-you-can-rest-medicine wasn't going where it needed to go... no oxygen left over to get it there. This also explains the temporary narcolepsy recent tendency to drop into a chair and doze (hypoxia = fatigue).

... that yes, albuterol rescue inhalers are  terrific, assuming the crud in your chest isn't so thick that the meds aren't getting in there. That's why the breathing treatment at Urgent Care, even though it's the same drug - has now brought the previously-mentioned low oxygen level all the way up to 98% (it should be above 95; as an example, when Abby was in the E.R. having an anaphylactic reaction to tree nuts about two-and-a-half years ago, hers was 93%).

... that all this means that the prednisone and Zithromax I just took should actually work this time.

... that the time I spent on my ass in the slush last week, the hairline fracture in my toe, the assorted bruises from said incident (including the one I can't see but that +Laston Kirkland says looks like a map of Germany's WWII invasion of France) and the resulting slow-moving / spending lots of time lying down and sitting down actually does affect something like this, in spite of germ theory. Because it works on the same principle as elderly people with broken hips getting pneumonia; it's all one system after all.

... that I should go back on the generic Percocet I was taking for the broken toe, at least at night. Because the reason that they give you cough syrup laced with codeine or Vicodin is not because these drugs are cough suppressants; they're not. But they are muscle relaxants, so they keep your lungs from spasming so much when you do cough. Assuming, of course, that your blood oxygen levels are such that you are getting said meds where they belong.

... that my husband is good in a crisis (this is one I relearned this week; he has really picked up my slack in a big way).

... that while we really would rather have not spent the extra money just now, getting the best washer / dryer / couch / desk chair we can possibly afford is the better choice... because we won't have to repurchase in a year or two. Dining chairs in a few weeks when this year's models come out at Costco (thanks to +Carrie Miller for that idea).

... that my love for the Internet still applies. Where else would I find people like +Kristi Forcier, who has been a Google Plus circlite of mine for several months, but who came and assembled furniture for us - two days in a row - even though we had never met in person?


Friday, December 20, 2013

Kirkland Calls for Aid

Help us, Seattleite friends. You are our only hope.

Maybe what we need is... a Doctor.

Choose your fandom, but Chez Kirkland needs your help if you're willing. You see, we're moving.

You knew that, because I've told you before, but there have been a few... let's just cal them "complications" because "clusterf&^ks" is a term that violates my self-imposed blog standards.

So, we're moving. As some of you know, +Laston Kirkland is currently out of work (though he starts a new job January 12), so he has been working his ass off getting our stuff packed and ready to go.

We have a... let's just say a "plethora" (because "sh!7-ton" is a term that violates my self-imposed blog standards) of stuff. Part of this is a tendency toward pack-rattiness, especially on Laston's, Leanna's, and Abby's parts (Lizzy too, but she is prone to out-of-sight-out-of-mind-itis where things are concerned. And me, but mine is mostly books). Part of it is two adults in their forties, three kids ages 6-13, and a cat. Part of this is being crammed into too small a space for 4.5 years. And part is very generous grandparents.

So we were moving along - not tossing as much as he'd like but not as little as the rest of the family would, and then the kids' new beds came. Merry Christmas.

Holy um... cow. These things are heavy. So we get them to the new place and there's a couple of problems. Each problem in and of itself is kind of minor, but piled together they are, well... there's that other word again. The first one that violated my self-imposed blog standards.
  1. Beds for Abby and Leanna say 4-6 hours to assemble. Okay. Oops - that was for two people. Triple the time and it's more accurate for one person. This has slowed Laston down considerably, and there's a couple of pieces he can't get on because the beds are too heavy for him to move.
  2. A couple things are not quite right with the house. Of course, these are both things (and one causes a third thing) that we really want to be right with the house. As soon as possible, like yesterday. 
    1. Thing One is that the water heater is not working properly, and there is sediment. They tried a new heating element and no dice, so they have to replace the heater, tank and all. 
    2. Thing Two is that we have no cable, the cable guy can't find the cable, and the landlord (we're buying the house but renting the land) swears up and down it's there. We really do need this, because while we can run to Star$$ or up to my mom's or whatever, we're so connected (Laston job-hunting stuff, my school, and just our considerable online life) that this is a right royal pain in the ass. 
    3. Thing Three is caused by Thing One - the icemaker - which is a make-or-break thing for Laston - is not working. We can't tell if this is due to the water being turned on and off all the time or if it's a problem with the machine itself.
  3. When going down the porch steps at my mom's to take some more stuff over to the new place, I fell. I am a person of considerable heft and so when I fell on slippery slushy steps, I appear to have sprained my right ankle, broken or dislocated (probably the latter) my right big toe, and I have assorted scrapes and bruises (and uncomfortably cold wet clothes). Probably a few more sore spots I'll find in the morning. Mom lent me a cane and an Ace bandage, and I have an old Rx of Oxycodone handy, but... well yeah.
So... we are not as packed as we thought we would be, I can't do as much as I thought I could (or drive), and we have no hot water or Internet service. And very little ice. Laston is close to tears of frustration, I'm starting to get foggy from a mixture of pain and off-brand Percocet, and we could really use some help if anyone is up for it. We have movers to do the actual hauling, but we could use help with last-second packing, unpacking, keeping my leg up and out of the way, and general moral support.

My mom has our three kids and my sister's child, though, so if you'd have to bring the kids, please just send good wishes, prayers, woo-woo, whatever you've got instead; we got ours out of the way for a reason. I love you all, but I can only deal with very little more right now.

I'm going to throw clean clothes into plastic garbage bags while I still can. Give me a heads up if you can help. We'll feed you something.

Pretty please?

Friday, December 13, 2013

Today I learned...

Pre-pubescent girls are noisy, excitable and shrill when traveling in packs. But they're harmless until you get them to Justice, and then it's all texting their parents to find out whether it's okay to spend their movie-snack money on friendship bracelets for each other, and asking them over and over to chill out and then facepalming when they think this is hilarious because you're on your way to see Frozen.

Do not frighten the Snow Queen until she knows exactly what she's doing. Before she has control she will hurt you.

An act of true love does not have to equal romance.

We're moving next week (it's real now, because they put the carpet in).

Abby's friend C has a mother who is a braver woman than I, because she's having Abby and S overnight after I took them to the mall and the movies and they're hyper to the ears.

Although Disney still (in my opinion) has a fetish for wasp-waisted heroines, those girls are getting more and more badass and strong in their own right. The last three movies - Tangled, Brave, and now Frozen - have some seriously Girl Power characters.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Sundae Sunday

Lizzy is a strange child. 

She has - for weeks - been talking about making a sundae on Sunday. This is a very specific sundae. It is not a banana split, but it has bananas. It also has four kinds of ice cream (chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, and chocolate chip mint), chocolate syrup, mini marshmallows, sprinkles, whipped cream, and two cherries. It is apparently supposed to be served in "a golden bowl" but I refused to buy a golden bowl for the sake of a sundae; that's expensive.

There was much discussion and angst when we were at the store, because I had to convince her that we could use one scoop of Neapolitan in place of three separate scoops, one of each flavor. And of course, Lizzy being Lizzy, she has to have the ingredients put in the not-golden bowl in a certain order. Just like her clothes when I lay them out for her.

This is not all that strange in and of itself. Not around here anyway.

What's really strange is that she has no idea where she got this concept. 

From TV? No. From a book? No.

"Mo-om, I thought it up in my own head."

And as I said she's been talking about it for weeks.

So we're having a Sundae Sunday.

And it is glorious.

And it's unlikely to happen very often, because oh my god the sugar.

+Laston Kirkland calls it the diabetenator.

It's a good thing we're having chicken and salad for dinner, because I think the Hubs and the kids have used up their calorie quota for the weekend already.