Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Is the week over yet?

Today was okay... I started off the morning with a tummy ache and I laid down on my floor at work for a little bit trying to feel better. I had two intakes this morning (which take a little longer than normal) and then I had case staffing this afternoon. By afternoon I was feeling better, not at 100%, but at least 85%.

I had a doctor's appt this afternoon (routine). We went over my lab results, the results from the MRI & from the Endoscopy. We talked about the possible divided pancreas and what the Internal Medicine Doc said. She has put in an order for labs so that the next time I have an "episode" I can go get the labs done right then. I *really* like my doc, she's neat. I'm thankful that I've had her for the last three years or so.

Tonight I haven't been doing much. I've been really tired, so I may go to bed early.

My guest went ahead and moved down to Waikiki for her last two nights. She was going to go into town tomorrow night, but decided that she might not get in at the Backpackers hostel (because of it being New Year's eve... some people might go just to stay in town). It was good to have her here for the two nights and getting the chance to meet her and get to know her.

Okay... I'm signing off.

Aloha!
- Kris

P.S. My middle daughter is back in AZ now, so all my kids are home.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Tuesday... & Costa Rica



Hello! Well, today was a fairly nice day, not too busy. I had a no show this morning, I will have to see the client later this week (New Year's eve morning). I did see 3-4 clients today and had to do some case consultation.
I actually left work pretty much on time today (that's unusual). I've been home watching TV tonight & playing with the pups. My house guest isn't home yet (and its almost 8pm!). I sure hope she makes it home okay!
My oldest daughter & family has made it back to Alaska okay, they are in Anchorage right now and will be getting into Fairbanks just after midnight.
My middle daughter had two job interviews today, one with Whitman College & one with the University of Scranton in PA. She would be happy with either position and she said they went really well.
My youngest daughter had to take my youngest granddaughter to the doctor today. She's been coughing, but they don't know why. She got her H1N1 shot today so that she can visit her Mom when she goes to the hospital to have her baby within a month. They also did a height & weight check and Kiara was in the 75% for height and about 50% for weight. She's doing good.
Okay... time to sign off.
Aloha!
- Kris

Monday, December 28, 2009

My new friend arrived


This was a picture that Nikki took of me yesterday up at Ali'i beach at sunset.
Work went okay today, I only had two appointments, one lasted about 2 hours though. And I was training another Social Worker. The paperwork for the long appointment takes a long time though, so I spent about an hour doing the paperwork on the appointments this afternoon. At lunch time I went over to my old job and had lunch with my former co-workers. The head boss (that is still over me in this position, to some degree) saw me over there and jokingly told me that he was going to make me come back over there and work (they are still short handed).
I left work about an hour late and came home and straightened up a little before my "new" friend got here. She's from Auckland (and is a friend of a friend of a friend... *smiles*). Of course I *love* her accent! *smiles* She's here on island for four days before she heads to Majuro in the Marshall Islands to do volunteer dog sterilization. We've enjoyed talking tonight.
Okay... I'm going to sign off so I can print out some bus maps for her before I go to bed.

Aloha!
- Kris

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Another beautiful day!



Had a good day. I drove into town this morning to watch the "Green Bay Packers' game after I realized it wasn't being shown on MY cable tv channels, and I couldn't find it on the internet and I couldn't even find it on the radio station. So... I went to a bar this morning! The upside of it was that I *did* get to watch the game (which my daughter & her family were at) and I got a great deal on breakfast (pancake, 1 egg, bacon and 2 diet sodas for less than $4!).
After the game I stopped & picked up Nikki & Guy and brought them back out to the apartment for some home-made split pea soup (and I had made cream cheese crab dip & had wheat thin crackers). A little later we had some bbq chicken, stuffing & corn. For desert I made 7 layer bars (again). Good food!
About 5 we left and I took them up to Ali'i beach where the above photos were taken. I was glad we found a turtle up there. The sun set over the mountains though... but it was still pretty (and peaceful up there). We had a good time. From there we stopped by where work so they could see my (tiny) office and then we headed back into town so I could drop them off. On the way into town I drove through the main part of town where Honolulu sets up their Christmas lights & decorations each year. I like seeing the holiday decorations. It's been pretty crowded the couple of times I have driven down there at night this year, I haven't stopped to walk through to take pictures. Maybe next year?
Okay... it's past my bedtime. At least it is a short work-week.
Aloha!
- Kris

Awesome beach day!




What a beautiful day to go to the beach! I wrote on my facebook: "Twas the Day after Christmas and the beach was so nice... sure glad I don't live where there's a lot of snow and ice!"
*smiles*
I did some errands today. I went and got a new printer. This one is a wireless all-in-one printer. I can copy, scan and print on it. I can also print onto CD's with it! How cool is that? It's been a bugger though, getting it set up tonight through my wireless network and router! GRRRR! I also got my netbook in the mail today. I ordered it off of Ebay and while it is in brand new condition, someone apparently set it up with a password, so now I need to figure out how to get into it without the password. Although i did write to the person I got it from to see if HE knows the password (if he did indeed buy it for himself, he SHOULD know the password!). So, I've been fighting with that this afternoon/evening.
My daughters have all made it safely to their destinations. (Well, Michelle is in Newark, NJ for the night, tomorrow she heads over to New York City where she will be until Thursday. Kati made it to Green Bay with her family, although everyone was exhausted when I talked to her earlier, they hardly slept on the plane. Tomorrow is the Green Bay Packer's game (hope they don't have any problems with the tickets I got for them (through Ebay)). I'm definitely going to get up and watch the game (hopefully it will be on one of the stations that I have!).
Other than that, I bought the stuff to make a crab ball (dip). It has to set overnight so the flavor sinks into the cream cheese (it's just made with cream cheese, immitation crab and green onions). My youngest daughter was making it to take over to my nephew's on Christmas day and it sounded good. Mmmmm! Not sure what I'm making for dinner tomorrow. I still have plenty of leftover ham. I'm thinking though I may go ahead and start a pot of home-made split pea soup with the ham bone, in the morning. I still need to get up and finish cleaning up in the morning (and figure out where to put these additional boxes!) and then I need to get the desert made. Guess I'll (hopefully) be doing that while the game is on.
Okay, time to sign off.
Aloha!
- Kris

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!


I thought I would post a couple pics of the pups for today. I've been trying to get one of Bruno with his teeth bared (he wasn't baring his teeth at me, but hadn't put his upper lip down after playing with Peanut). He looks SO funny! It looks like he has those fake vampire teeth.
Christmas was nice today. I got woke up early by the pups, they needed their morning walk. I laid back down for a couple hours, then straightened up the apartment before my friends got here. We had a great dinner. I made a ham & some scalloped potatoes (my favorite dinner!) and Nikki made a green bean casserole. All of it was good! Nikki & I took the pups for a walk and I showed them pictures from my cruise. Before too long it was time for them to head home (before dark).
Tonight I've just been keeping an eye on flights, I'm using the live flight tracker to watch the progress of my daughter's flight to MN. I'm glat to see they are on their way and it looks like they shouldn't have any problems getting through MN.
I did talk to all three of my daughters & got to wish them a Merry Christmas. I should have called my siblings, but I did talk to my older sister yesterday. I'll catch up with them soon.
Okay, time to sign off.
Aloha!
- Kris

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Mele Kalikimaka!


Just another picture of my little tree.


Hello & Merry Christmas. I hope you have a safe, warm, quiet Christmas day to celebrate the reason for the season (Jesus Christ's birth).
Today I worked a half day (as I write this it is Christmas eve in Hawaii). The morning was fairly quiet. After work I did some grocery shopping and even though the store was very crowded, I managed to get in and out in a reasonable time. Now I'm ready for tomorrow and the upcoming week.
This afternoon I drove in towards town and saw the movie "Up in the Air" with star George Clooney. It was a pretty good movie. It was about a guy who travels for a living (he travels to different companies and fires people... let them go). His ultimate goal in life was to earn 10 million air miles.
Tonight I've been home watching TV and talking with my oldest daughter a lot. She & her family are scheduled to fly out tomorrow night to Milwaukee, WI and then drive up to Green Bay. (So, they fly out Friday night, they are due into Minneapolis, MN at 5:30am on Dec 26th and then into Milwaukee about 9am. From there they are renting a car to drive up to Green Bay. Well... I don't know if you've seen the weather, but Minneapolis is expecting up to 2 feet of snow over the next 24 hours or so. I'm praying that the storm moves through faster than expected and that the flights are all back on track by tomorrow night. Please say a prayer for them, for safe travels. My son-in-law is VERY nervous about flying and then driving on "mainland" roads. Living in Alaska is like living in a remote country in many ways. You can bet I will be watching the weather reports tomorrow night and doing some flight tracking. It was ironic that as my daughter was on the phone in a panic this afternoon, I got a call from my friend Barb in Minneapolis. I was able to pass Barb's number onto my daughter on the off chance they get stranded in MN. (God works in mysterious ways!).
So... say a prayer for my daughters (all three could probably use them... my middle daughter flies to NYC on Saturday).
Okay... time to sign off so I can head to bed. I need to get up and straighten up my apartment, do some laundry and get some dinner going before my friends get here a little after lunch time.
Oh yea... that reminds me, my friend Barb said that she & her husband Bob will be getting here January 6th, and then a friend of a friend - Karen is coming in Dec 28th (in the evening) and will be here for 4 days. I've never met her... it's a long story, I'm sure I'll enjoy meeting her and I'm grateful I can play host for a few days.
Aloha & Mele Kalikimaka!
- Kris

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Cartegena pics

Fortress by the sea
Ahoy matey!
Cartegena
Let's head out to a cabana by the sea
Walled in old city
C'mon you *ss! Move it!
We passed several armed checkpoints on our way to the mud volcano

The Fortress

The "Dungeons" - a great place to shop! (It's in the old city)
Colorful dresses for sale...
Inside the walled city...
Inside the walled city
snacks for sale...
Shopping area with vendors (and a mutt)
The "New" city of Cartegena off in the distance
The Enchantment at night in Cartegena next to a "Carnival" cruise ship.
So... I thought I was going to have a busy day today, but I had two no-shows this morning (including one that was supposed to be a long appt - that person apparently went home for Christmas).
At lunch time I went over to my old clinic and had lunch with my former co-workers. It was nice to see them all at one time. We did an inexpensive gift exchange. I bought a small mixing bowl cooking set and was glad it ended up with the person it did. (She could use it!).

This afternoon I staffed three cases, one of mine, two for a co-worker. Those went fine, they were relatively quick. Then I had one client that was arrested last night (drunk driving), I thought they would come in for an appt this afternoon, but didn't make it. I wonder if they are still in jail? AND... I got a new client this afternoon (and met with a regular client this afternoon that was having a good day!). SO... this afternoon made up for the slow morning.
So... are YOU ready for Christmas? I still need to do some grocery shopping tomorrow afternoon. At least I am only supposed to work a 1/2 day. I hope they still have a nice ham when I get there to the store. I am having Guy & Nikki over for dinner on Christmas day. We are having Ham, Scalloped potatoes, a Green bean casserole and I'm not sure yet what we will be having for desert.
I'm excited for my daughter's Christmas's. My oldest daughter is flying down to Wisconsin (from Alaska) for a Green Bay Packer's game. I know she will have a good time. It's the first time my son-in-law has been out of Alaska since he was 3 years old (he was born in WI and is an avid Green Bay Packer fan, as is my oldest granddaughter). I hope they have a good time and a safe trip! My middle daughter is heading out to New York City the day after Christmas for the Annual Philosophy Conference. She has a few job interviews lined up. I know she was hoping to hear from Reed College, the University of Victoria & St. Olaf colleges, they were among the top colleges she was hoping to hear from (requesting a job interview). There's one college in particular that she is interviewing for that she would like to teach at, and it was also high on her list. So... time will tell. I gave her a gift certificate to go buy some dressy clothes for interviewing. I hope she makes it safely to NYC (with NO weather delays!). She won't get to stay for New Year's eve though, as the price of the hotel sky rocket's that night.
My youngest daughter is in Spokane... very pregnant at this point and feeling it. I'm hoping she & my youngest granddaughter enjoy the variety of gifts I have sent them (some have been purchased over the year... my youngest daughter is fairly easy to buy for!). I'm glad she has my family there for the holidays. She's enjoyed a day of baking with my nephew's family and is participating in a gift exchange.
And me? It's going to be ~80 degrees and sunny. Our President will be on the island. I'm hoping for a glimpse of him while he's here, but I am on the other side of the island. I hope HE and his family have a safe, relaxing, enjoyable and uneventful holiday here in Hawaii. (Last time he was here the power went out all over the island for about 12 hours!).
Time to sign off for another day.
Aloha!
- Kris
P.S. I forgot to mention that I woke up this morning with a VERY sore lower back (I have degenerative tissue in the lower back). As the day has progressed, so has the backache. Tonight it's very painful. I almost thought about trying to contact my doctor to see if I could get something for the pain. It hasn't hurt this much in a couple years. I need to ice it and put heat on it. I've been taking Tylenol to no avail. I see my doc next week, I think I will ask her if there is anything I can take for "break-through" pain. I could have used something several times on my cruise when I over did things, and I certainly could have used something today and tonight! Please say a prayer that my back will get better. I don't look forward to going through the weekend with the pain. Thanks!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Tuesday and more Enchantment pics






More food pics & ice carvings from the Enchantment cruise.
So... today went okay. I had a couple no-shows so my day was easier than planned. I still stayed busy and didn't get out of the office until about 6pm. When I got to work I had a "secret Santa" gift waiting. I'm not sure who it is from, I brought it home and put it under my little Christmas tree. I took in the ornament I got yesterday and had all my co-workers names put on, and left it hanging on my supervisor's door. My supervisor really liked it!

Tomorrow I have another busy day and will be joining my old co-workers for a potluck lunch & gift exchange.
Okay... time to sign off!
Aloha!
- Kris

Monday, December 21, 2009

Good news, bad news?







I thought I would post some pictures from the Windjammer Restaurant on the Enchantment. It was the "cafe" that was open most of the day/night.
I had my Endoscopy today. The doc said it came out good, everything looked fine. I guess that is good news/bad news. I still don't know what causes my tummy pains when they occur. He looked at my MRI results but didn't seem to think that the divided pancreas was the cause because if that was the case, it should show up in my labs. So... I don't know anything more than I did before. The procedure itself sucked. First, I almost passed out during the IV insertion. I haven't done that in a long time. The technician first asked me if anyone had difficulty getting an IV in me, then she did it on the right hand (normally I have it done on the left hand or inside of the left elbow). That was after I had to hang my right arm suspended while making a fist. The Technician did get it on the first time, that was good. But then I was almost to the point of passing out. So, she put a cold cloth on my forehead and a cold pack under my neck, she also leaned me back in the chair. I was okay after about 5 minutes and then I was able to walk back to the procedure room unassisted. Ah... the things you do in the name of medical science! *wink*
I did get the day off, because I was not supposed to work for 12 hours. So, this afternoon I went and saw the movie "Blind Sided." It was a REALLY good movie. I also picked up a couple ornaments. After that I was worn out, so I came home and slept for a few hours this afternoon.
Tonight I've been catching up on emails and watching some junk TV. Nothing too exciting.
Okay... time to sign off, it's about time to take the dogs out for their last walk of the night before going to bed. I still need to get my stuff ready for tomorrow (work). I'm supposed to have a busy day.
Aloha!
- Kris

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Christmas decorating...

My little (artificial) tree, it's just over 3' tall. I finally got it decorated last night!
I bought a holiday tablecloth & red placemats. Then I got my Christmas dishes (that I got at a christmas party back in 2003 or so... for awhile they were my ONLY dishes, when I was a student here). I decided to set my table for Christmas. I think it looks nice. I also got a stocking holder & put my stocking up by the table there. (thats my coin jar in the middle of the table).
Today Nikki & Guy came over for dinner. It was good to have them here. I just saw them Friday and will be seeing them again for Christmas and then next Sunday as well. They called to let me know that they were down at the bus stop, so I started to walk down there with the dogs. I was happy when Peanut recognized them when we got close to them. Bruno didn't know what to think though. He wasn't sure about Peanut going up to strangers wagging her tail & wanting to lick them all over. Later in the afternoon though, Bruno took a nap on Guy's lap (they both took an afternoon siesta).
I got the pie out (Chocolate Peanut Butter cream pie) that I won last night in the Chinese auction, and went to take a bite and it was sour! YUK! So... I tossed it. Then I made a 7-layer bar mix that was REALLY good! (Too good!).
I missed my friend Betty's phone call this afternoon. Darn it! I had my phone ringer turned down. I also missed text messages from my youngest daughter. But, I did hear the phone ring later & it was her. She was at my nephew's house baking cookies today. My nephew & his girlfriend (partner, soon to be wife?) had some friends over. They had the same last name as my maiden name. I guess they started talking and found out that their dad is my cousin. (I guess I thought Dwayne had passed away, but found out otherwise today). I realize that they live in the city where I grew up, but it's still a small world!
Other than that, I have a short work-week this week. I am off tomorrow because I have an Endoscopy scheduled in the morning. I'm looking forward to seeing the "GI" doctor tomorrow, because he'll have the results of my MRI which says that I have a divided pancreas. It'll be interesting to see what he says about it. Apparently it might be the result of a birth defect, that wouldn't show up because most often it is asymptomatic. It sounds like the only way you might find out you have one, is through testing for something else (like my MRI to help determine if I have gallstones). The way it is fixed is endoscopically (which is what I'm having done tomorrow, is an endoscopy). It'll be interesting if the doc decides to fix it, or if he can.
Anyway... I'm off tomorrow. Then I work Tuesday and Wednesday and get a half day off on Thursday (Christmas eve). Then I'll be off for the three-day weekend. (YEA!).
Okay... I'm going to sign off. I'm watching "Survivor." It's the finale. I'm also listening to the nightly fireworks. Some people sure must spend a LOT of money on fireworks! It'll continue to get worse until New Year's Eve.
Aloha!
- Kris

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Holiday parties...



This was the welcoming that greeted the ship in Cartegena. I just thought I would post a couple pictures tonight... I'm really tired (I stayed up WAY too late last night, and for no other reason than I didn't feel like going to bed... so I played (and researched stuff) on the computer and then fell asleep on my couch with the dogs curled at my feet).
I slept in until about 9, but then had to get up and go run some errands and do some shopping. I dropped my cans off for recycling, picked up some puppy pads & dog food, picked up a TV/Entertainment shelving unit to put under my TV. (I had a black, cheap, pressed wood shelving thing, but it wasn't very sturdy, so I wanted something that looked a little nicer). I got it set up this afternoon (after putting it together) and it looks good. I cleaned my fish tank (I'm amazed that my fish are still alive!) and it looks great sitting on the shelving unit. I'll take a picture of it one of these days. I do have my Christmas tree out, but it isn't set up. I did get my kitchen & bathroom cleaned up and swept the house and mopped my bedroom, the hallway and the kitchen. I still have some cleaning to do between now and tomorrow at lunch time when Guy & Nikki come over.
This evening I went to the "meet-in" Christmas party. It was held at the Phucket Thai restaurant. My favorite oriental restaurant is still "Little Village." There were at least 20 of us at the party and we did the "Chinese" auction thing. My gifts did about the best (they were taken until they couldn't be taken anymore). I had taken the pizza set (pizza pan, rack, wooden paddle, cutter, and pie shaped spatula). Everyone REALLY liked that one. The other thing I got was a set a nesting metal bowls, that went over really well too. At the end of the trading and such, I ended up with a Peanut Butter Chocolate Cream pie from Ted's Bakery (they make the best pies on the island!). I figured it would work well for when Guy & Nikki come up for dinner tomorrow.
After the Christmas party, I went to Bubbies' for Ice Cream for some desert. They make the best home-made Ice cream. I ran into some friends there, including Alicia, she is flying out tomorrow. She's moving over there to join her husband Tom. They were married a couple months ago.
I got home late and just caught myself dozing on the couch. I thought I'd better get my blog done and get to bed! And with that, I'll sign off.
Aloha!
- Kris

Friday, December 18, 2009

Friday night



Work was okay today, had a meeting first thing to discuss clients and then about lunch time we went over to the company party. The party was very loud though, with a bunch of different things going on at once and it was a little too much sensory overload. I finally sat outside on the patio (of the building we were in) where it was a "little" more quiet. We didn't stay for the whole party, we went back to work for about another hour to wrap things up and then got off at 3. (I left about 3:20). I did some grocery shopping on the way home.
My friend Goldie called me about 5:15 to let me know they were going to start letting people into the Arizona Memorial area at 5:30. I was to meet Guy & Nikki there as well. So I hustled and got there. Nikki & Guy had already gotten there and had gotten a ticket for me as well (whew!). So, we were all on the same boat. *smiles* It was the first boat of the evening though, they went out a little earlier than last year. I think I wish we had been on a later boat, because you don't enjoy the lights on the boats as much. I *do* love singing along with the Christmas carols though.

That's probably something I would enjoy, getting together with some friends to go Christmas caroling each year.
Guy, Nikki & I went and got a bite to eat after the boat ride and did a little shopping. I bought a glass shelving unit to put my TV accessories on, I have to pick it up tomorrow (I didn't have enough room in my car to pick it up tonight). After the shopping, I took Nikki & Guy home, but we drove through downtown so they could enjoy the City lights (which are always beautiful!).
Okay... bedtime, it's midnight and I have a busy day (with chores mainly) tomorrow.
Aloha!
- Kris

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Pics of Santa Marta, Columbia






Beaded jewelry laid out for sale at this beautiful pull-off area.

Looks rather isolated, think they would mind if you & I joined them? *smiles*




Street vendors


The mounted police!
Okay... it's almost midnight & I have to get up to go to work tomorrow so I'm not going to stay up and write much. Work was busy today, moreso this afternoon when I had to facilitate meetings all afternoon. I didn't leave work until after 6 and then went to a co-worker's house for a Christmas party. They are new to Hawaii and have come from spending about 12 years in the Anchorage area of Alaska. I had a great time!
I didn't get home until about 10:30pm and have just been reading through my emails (got yours Bette!), and posting pictures to this blog.

I need to sign off and take the dogs out one more time before bedtime (in hopes that Peanut won't wake me up so early!).
Aloha!
- Kris