Wednesday, September 30, 2009

First day on the job?


So... I did manage to get "sworn in" today and I managed to get signed in at the new clinic, but that was about all. I did make it back to my old office for a little bit twice to take care of a couple things. I had to run into town twice today. I wasn't able to get sworn in this morning because the person that was to do it, wasn't there, so I had to go back into town late this afternoon, then back to work to do the clinic inprocessing. Whew! Only nice thing about doing all the driving this afternoon, was that I got to listen to a good share of the Hawaii versus LA Tech football game (which we lost 27-6!). The next game is in a week and a half and it will be back here on the islands.

Today was my oldest granddaughter's birthday, it sounds like she was happy with her birthday presents. Her two Grandpas (paternal & maternal) went in together & got her a "netbook" which is like a laptop, but smaller. I sent her a digital camera with some extra memory.

Tomorrow my youngest daughter is supposed to find out the sex of her baby (she is giving it up for adoption... long story). She has already picked out and met the adoptive parents and is very happy with her choice. She is doing an "open" adoption so that she can have some contact as the child grows.

Not much else to write about today, so will sign off for another day.

- Kris

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Well... today was the deadline to make the decision. I chose to go ahead and accept the Civil Service position. I still have mixed feelings about it, but I made the decision and will live with it and make do with it.
I fear one thing about working with the military. It's their power to mandate that I take an annual flu shot and mandate that I get the H1N1 vaccine. Here's a paragraph that was in an article about the H1N1 vaccine with the military:
"As a result, the military is expected to provide health officials with an early assessment of the vaccine.
"Because I can compel people to get the shots, larger numbers will have the vaccine," said Renuart, commander of U.S. Northern Command. "They will, as a percentage of the population, be vaccinated more rapidly than many of us. So we may see some objective results, good or not, of the vaccinations."
Scary, huh! The military - active duty and DOD civilians are going to continue to be the Government's guinnea pigs. And if I want to work for the military, *I* have to get the shot. (I still need to talk to my doc about a possible waiver).
Other than that... the new supervisor is happy that I am coming to work there, although she said I *have* to be over there tomorrow (in the position). WHAT???? It sounds like I might be able to work at least part-time for a couple weeks to wrap up my cases. Today was busy though, I had group with 9 clients and then I had an intake today (that I really shouldn't have gotten, it should have gone to someone else), I met with a regular client and then had a consult with a social worker (in another clinic) and had to make a call to a client. I didn't leave work til 7pm because I needed to write up the documentation for today's intake and it was 4 pages long. There's still a lot left undone that I need to get done ASAP!
I talked to my supervisor to let him know and he seemed surprised. What? Don't you have to get a physical? Don't you have to do the Credentialing paperwork? It's all done. All I have to do is go through the swearing in ceremony tomorrow (and turn in my security paperwork). I'm nervous about the whole situation.
Other than that, I got my calendars in the mail today! YAY! I ordered 25 to make sure I had enough for my family & friends and I have to say, Vistaprint did an EXCELLENT job! They will make great Christmas presents. And the turn around time was quick! (I still haven't gotten my business cards though!).
Okay... time to sign's about time to take my pups for a walk (I held a 7 week old puppy today, he was sure cute! He was tiny, a chihuahua/pomeranian mix).
- Kris

Monday, September 28, 2009

No decision today... but getting there...

Come sit with me and we will watch the sunset from here... *smiles*
Work started off okay, started right in and then got a call that I needed to fill out a 21 page questionaire. So... I spent all morning doing that (after I saw a regular client that I see) and completed it just after lunch (and worked on it most of the way through lunch). I did get to sit down for awhile with a Social Worker from downstairs, she works in another clinic. We have a common client and needed to discuss the case. Husband & wife are currently separated so we are going to first meet with the wife, then with the husband, then a mutual meeting of the two of them together, to talk about safety issues and future plans. I expect fireworks at that meeting!
On the other job situation, that boss said she hasn't heard of anyone in our hospital getting that option (of a student loan repayment) and I think they will tell me that because my term of assignment is only 2 years at this time, they can't offer it. So now what? One of my co-workers asked me what it would take me to stay... I guess if Godwin could come back and keep the contract would be the best thing for me (at least THEY were trying to get me a raise). And then I'm thinking I should ask the other boss... what else can you bring to the table. You want me to take a $6,700 pay cut and do twice the amount of work. What do *I* get out the deal? What is it that you have to offer to convince me to take your job offer? I mentioned they took that 14K bonus off the table, I found out that the guy they were trying to get from the mainland, was actually offered a 50% bonus.
So... I'm all confabluted. (is that a word?). Right now I am scheduled to get sworn in on the new position on Wednesday afternoon (I *have* to be sworn in by 1 October, otherwise they lose their direct hiring authority. SO... I guess I'll know more by Weds afternoon.
Okay time to sign off.
- Kris

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Another beautiful day in Hawaii Nei!

Just another view of Ala Moana, my favorite beach. I was down at Magic Island for the wedding reception for Tom & Alicia. Wow... there were about 150 people there! It took me almost an hour just to find a place to park. But the food & fellowship were nice!

I talked to my friends Bette & Walt today, and also called my friends Guy & Nikki. Bette & Walt are doing okay, but I guess Guy had a problem about a week ago with an irregular heartbeat. He had been over talking to his neighbor and Nikki had gone inside to check on something, all of a sudden her neighbor was yelling for her. Guy had passed out (on Nikki's cactus plants! Ouch!). He wasn't out long and they just kind of monitored the situation for awhile, but his heart was still acting irregular the next day, so they went to the ER. And of course... once they got him checked in, his heart settled down and was doing okay. If it had just settled down a couple hours before! (As you probably know, ER visits are expensive!). He's doing okay now though. And then I found out I missed Guy's birthday! It was on the 21st! I'll have to send him a special belated card! This last couple weeks have been SO hectic, I'm lucky I remember my granddaughter's birthdays! I just sent off my oldest granddaughter's birthday card tonight, and her birthday is Weds. Fortunately her birthday present is already there.

Let's see, what else did today hold? This morning I colored my hair, and then on my way home I stopped and got a haircut. It's pretty short, but I like it. *smiles*

Okay.. time to sign off. I'm watching "The Great American Race" and I need to figure out what I'm wearing to work tomorrow.

- Kris

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Quiet Saturday...

Not a whole lot to write about today... I did get the hallway and bathroom grouted today, it came out nice. But... that's ALL that has gotten done today. It's been a fairly lazy day watching too much TV and keeping an eye on the dogs so that they don't "hook-up."

Tomorrow I get to head into Ala Moana beach for a wedding reception. My friends Alicia & Tom got married today and will be moving to CA soon. I met them through the Meet In group. Really nice couple (young enough to be my kids).

Okay... I'm signing off.

- Kris

Friday, September 25, 2009


Taken at Waimea Bay...

So... I started the day off good, being productive, but then I had a co-worker leaving and we had his going-away party today (he's retiring). So... that took a couple hours at lunchtime and it was hard to get back to work afterwards. My co-workers wanted to have a bull session this afternoon, I missed half of it because I was actually working, dealing with a case doing some case management. When I went in later they asked me what the status of my transition is, so I brought everyone up to date at the same time. Do I know I am leaving? No. They weren't able to get an answer today on the student loan situation, but when I reviewed it, I saw that I need to be in a position that is good for 3 years (not that I *have* to stay in that particular position for 3 years), but the Civil Service position is a 2-year term position. I'm not sure they can extend it a year so that I can qualify for the loan.

So... what do I do if the basic rate they have offered is the best they can do? It's a 6-7K decrease in pay, I will get an extra week of vacation and 2 weeks of sick leave and I *should* get more training opportunities. And the long-term benefit is that I want to be able to travel overseas with the government and I would probably be able to build up more retirement. Anyway... I guess I have some decisions to make.

Oh... and I found out that this position requires a "Secret" clearance (so some of you friends & family out there might get questioned about me). I've already dropped off my paperwork.

Other than that, today is my youngest granddaughter's birthday. She turned 7. She had a birthday party at school today, she has one tomorrow for a small group of friends and then on Sunday she'll have a family birthday party with my siblings, nieces and nephews.

Okay... time to sign off.

- Kris

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Decisions, Decisions...

Waimea River, Kauai

So... this morning I had to run into town. Unfortunately, the contracting company I am currently working for did NOT send the authorization for my UA. (I had asked them to let me know by 6am if they were able to send the authorization, they are on the East Coast, so I said noon their time... and when I got to work I saw that my email request to them had been received and read about 3:47am). So... I still had to drop off some security paperwork in town, as it turned out, that office didn't open until 8 am so I had to wait around for awhile. Then I found out that they didn't need it because they already had what they needed (because of my current position). I also stopped by the Credentialing department, and *they* said they didn't need anything from me, other than my final decision so that they could move forward. The Civil Service supervisor had said she couldn't tell me the salary offer until they had everything. I refused to commit to a job that I did not know the salary on.

Work-wise today, I met with a client that I've had for a couple years. She'll be leaving in about a month. She's made quite a bit of progress on many levels. The other client I had today came in with a HUGE chip on his shoulder, but was in a much better frame of mind when he left. I always try hard to find some way to establish a rapport with my clients. In this particular case, he was from the area near where my grandparents were from originally (they came from the Fremont, NE area), so I used that as an "in."

This afternoon I was focused on paperwork as I waited to hear a salary offer. The other supervisor had called while I was with a client and left a message saying she could make my salary offer. She was in meetings all afternoon, finally about 5:15 I gave her a call and went on over to her office. The offer itself was a little more than what I was offered last time (2 steps higher). And... I may have been willing to accept it if she had not told me that they could NOT offer me the bonus (which was significant). I was really bummed about that. SO... I counter-offered and requested that they offer me the student loan payback incentive (they will pay up to 10K a year for up to 5 years, I owe about 15K total). I basically said that if they could approve that, I would accept the offer. It would be worth it to me, as my current payments are almost $300 a month. So... at this point they have until midnight tomorrow night otherwise they won't be able to hire someone for the position until December and they REALLY want me. (The supervisor told me that my last supervisor told her that she should grab me if she could and had lots of good things to say about me *smiles*).

So... as I said, I guess I will accept the position if they can do the student loan thing. As someone told me, I will never be in a better position than I am right now, to bargain for what I want. And at this point, if they DON'T come through with the offer, then I'm 95% sure that I *won't* accept the position.

Stay tuned... tomorrow will hopefully bring more news (and good news?).

Okay time to sign off... I watched "Survivior" and "The Mentalist" tonight, both good shows.

- Kris

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

No major decisions today...

So... this morning was filled with case staffing stuff. I was talking with our front office clerk and he asked me if I had made a decision, I told him they were offering me a signing bonus and he said he already knew! What the heck? Well... he's very good at picking up information and happened to talk to a senior boss and probably flat out asked him something regarding whether or not I was leaving. I'm not sure. I'm just amazed at how much he finds out and how much he knows. I guess he's one of those guys that you feel you can tell things to (a good quality to have). In the meantime... I did NOT hear by noon what the salary offer would be. This afternoon I got some calls asking me to go get a urine test (and as we played telephone tag, I tried to tell them that I need a doctor or someone to put in an order for me to do so). Then at the end of the day, I was told that I didn't need one after all (at least not at this time). Then there was a question about whether my college transcripts were received (I don't know if they were, but I did request them express delivery two weeks ago). Then there was a comment that the Credentialing department had questions... it seems like it is always something.

Later in the day I was told that I may get hired into the other position but kept in my current position for a couple more months. I mentioned that to the supervisor in the new job and she about had a fit. I know my current position is having difficulty with the possibility that I might be leaving soon, one of my co-workers is almost having a meltdown over the idea. I have to remind myself that I am NOT responsible for her feelings.

I ended up working until 6pm tonight. At least they finally got my Microsoft Office working on my computer, that helps.

Okay... gotta scoot!

- Kris

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Whew... what a day?

Well... I woke up this morning and didn't feel like going into work. The pups woke me up about 4am and then I had trouble falling back to sleep. To top it off, I didn't have my alarm set right, so it didn't go off when it was supposed to (I only slept an extra 20 minutes). I just wanted to lay on the couch and cuddle with the pups.
Work went okay, although my computer was down this morning and only worked 1/2 way this afternoon. I was able to do my online documentation, but didn't have access to some key files and I didn't have access to Microsoft Office. Fortunately, I was able to access my work email remotely. This morning I had 7 in group, then I had an appt with a client that was involved in an incident that I needed to talk to them about. I thought I was going to be able to get my online documentation done this afternoon (I had to catch up from yesterday as well), and then about 4 I had a client come in sobbing in a crisis. After doing some crisis resolution with her, she left with a smile (sad smile, but still a smile) a little over an hour later. I need to follow up on some of the stuff related to her tomorrow.
I got a call from the supervisor at the other position. I had emailed her today to remind her that if I am not over there working on Monday, then I cannot start until they go back through the hiring process. That *really* sent her into a panic (at the idea they may have to wait until December to hire someone), and she got some higher ups involved and there was some movement on that issue. She apparently has gotten the hiring bonus approved, but she was not able to tell me the salary yet. She needs someone higher up to give their final approval. It sounds like I will know tomorrow about noon. Unfortunately, as soon as I am told, she's going to want me to make a decision. (Yikes!). I kind of wish I could give a little more notice, even though my co-workers have known that there was a chance that I could be gone by the end of the month... BUT... that is NEXT Monday! It MAY be going from the frying pan to fire as far as workload goes and it will be a challenge for sure, but there's a lot of potential for growth in that position.

Okay... gotta scoot. I was late getting home, I need to take the dogs out for a walk and then think about heading to bed. Tomorrow will be a busy day with case staffing meetings in the morning.

- Kris

Monday, September 21, 2009

Busy then pau!

So, I had a busy morning with two new clients (which takes more paperwork) and one individual appointment that I've been seeing for a couple months. Then I had one appointment later this afternoon (I thought we had a staff meeting this afternoon, but it was cancelled). I met with the client I had this afternoon in another office because they were switching out my computer. As it turned out they didn't have the correct keyboard (?) and so weren't able to finish the set up. So, I wasn't able to finish my online documentation. In fact, there was a lot I had hoped to get done this afternoon that I wasn't able to. Oh well, that just meant that I got to leave on time (what a novel concept)!

Job-wise... no news on the salary. Although I did hear from the supervisor at the other job, I had told her late last week that I had made reservations for a cruise the end of November. She said it is unlikely I would be able to take the leave due to others already having plans in that office at that time. What the heck??? That *might* be a deal-breaker right there. I will lose my deposit ($250) now. (The final payment was due this past weekend, which I paid... and I let her know that). So... that's something to consider in this whole mess.

Okay... I'm going to sign off. Not much else to write about. Tomorrow will be another busy day.

- Kris

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Puppy pics

I had Peanut & Bruno with me in the bedroom as I helped with grouting (actually... I had to do the cleaning).
Peanut with her diaper on... somehow she keeps wiggling out of it, not intentionally... so I've taken to using masking tape to hold it on.

Isn't this an adorable face? He's my baby... such a cutie!
So... the bedroom is done except for the baseboard. So, in the meantime, I can't move my dressers back in, but I was able to move the bed in. I meant to take a picture of the bedroom before I moved the bed in, but I was so wiped out, I took a nap this afternoon. I still ache, but I know in the end, it will be worth it. At least the puppies won't be able to chew up the rugs any more! *smiles*
Not much else to write about. It's Sunday evenining, I'm just taking it easy. Not ready for tomorrow, hope my body feels better when I wake up and have to face a new week. I *should* know more this week about what I will be doing work-wise. Tomorrow will be a busy day. I have about 4 appointments scheduled and we have a staff meeting in the afternoon.
Time to sign off.
- Kris


My empty bedroom... pulled up the rug & the pad...
Starting to get there. The floor is coming along nicely. While the guy is working, I keep offering him diet pepsi and snacks and as he needs the tiles, I go out on the porch/lanai and get a box and take it to him in the bedroom. Each box of tiles weighs about 55 pounds (I think in an earlier blog I said they weighed 35 pounds... I was wong! Oh well, my arms are getting a work out.

Here's the floor basically finsihed, except for the grout lines. I've been the gopher on ths job, go wash this out, rinse this and bring me another box of tiles! *smiles*. I did run to get breakfast and then a little shopping at Walmart. I'm VERY tired tonight. Oh yea, I ordered my grand-daughters their birthday presents, so they should receive them a couple days befor their birthdate. I also went online and ordered customized aloha calendars, those should come in handy for gifts.
Okay.. it's after midnight, I had better sign off...
- Kris
P.S. I wrote the original post after I took my Ambien, got up this morning and found some typos so have gone back in and corrected those. I'm pretty sore this morning. I think I lugged 8 boxes into the bedroom for the tiling yesterday, I was also down scraping off the old rubber from the pad (all the lines in the top picture). Peanut is in heat and bleeding, so while I was at Walmart, I bought her some doggie diapers which meant every time she needed to "potty" I took her diaper off and took her & Bruno outside. I think they went on 5-6 walks yesterday. This morning they had me up at their standard 5:45am time. UGH!

Friday, September 18, 2009

To Vaccinate or Not to Vaccinate...

This was sunset over off of Ke'e Beach on the North Shore of Kauai. It's a picture I took when my daughter Michelle & I were over there a few weeks ago. A couple weeks ago I ordered some cards from "Vista Print" online, they are note cards. They turned out REALLY nice. It's a picture that I took when Janis & I were over there. I'll be sending a "note" out to some of my friends & family.

As far as the header goes... well, when I went into work today, we were all pretty much MANDATED to go get the flu shot (or flumist). I managed to escape today as I sent an email to my doctor (who works for the same "company" that I do) and asked if I could get a waiver so I don't have to get it. She is out until Monday, so I was "spared" today. I *really* don't want to get the flu shot. (The flumist isn't indicated for those 50 and over). After the flu shot, they are going to mandate the pneumonia shot and the H1N1 shot. Besides just have so much fear about shots (I will have to get the shot while laying down so I don't pass out), I am worried that I will get sick as a result of getting it. Since 2005, I have had Sinusitis twice, and in January 2007 and January 2008 I had Upper Respiratory Infections. In the two years I have been working for this "company" I have NOT called in sick once. (I did take "scheduled sick leave for doctor appointments and surgery). I think in the last 5 years, I've probably called in sick 3 times? I typically don't get sick. I attribute it to the vitamin regiment that I am on, to include Vitamin D daily.

Anyway... bottom line is that I am against getting the vaccines, but if it comes to getting it or losing my job... I guess I will HAVE to get it. I just hope that I can convince my supervisors that if I get sick from the vaccine, I can take off without losing pay. I wouldn't abuse it... but with the new contract I only get 2 weeks off a year (no sick leave) and I'll be darned if I want to use any leave time for being sick due to being forced to take a shot.

Other than that, the Civil Service supervisor emailed me and said they are still working on the pay issue. My current company, the new contract company sent me a "welcome to the company" email but has not said anything about the rebuttal to th econtract. Work-wise it was a fairly quiet day til this afternoon. I had a client that I don't see very often come in, he's doing a lot better. We had about a 2 hour session. He needed a time to vent.

Okay... time to sign off... I'm supposed to be up early tomorrow because I have someone coming over to start tiling the bedroom and I need to remove the bed out of there (the dressers are all moved out already). My knees will probably be really sore Sunday as I attempt to help with the tiling!

- Kris

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Well... let's see...

So... where do I start. Today was another relatively quiet day. (I like those). I *did* get an email about the Civil Service position which basically said that the person who determines the salary for the position is on vacation until next Monday. Guess I will know more next week?

And... I didn't get a confirmation that the Contracting company got my contract, but tonight I did get a request for a couple forms that were "missing" even though I sent them (with 24 other pages). Guess I will re-send them. I talked with another co-worker who's contract also was just underbid by the same company and he was told that his pay would go down 40% and he's the sole provider for his family (and his son is autistic). At least I had more notice and had some options.

Other than that, I got to pick up my car tonight. It *only* cost me $561 and that was with a free coupon for the oil change. They replaced a valve gasket to stop the oil leak and a thermometer, something about the combo was causing the antifreeze to leak. They weren't able to figure out why my air conditioner made my car die, but I ran the air conditioner on the way home and didn't have any problem with it. They also did my safety inspection so that is out of the way.

Tonight I watched the first episode of the ""Survivor." There was one participant that is pure evil, his name is Russell and he is an Oil Company executive and apparently already a millionaire. After watching the first episode, I really believe he is a sociopath. Sociopaths can rise to high positions, becaue they don't care who they step on or hurt to get what they want out of life. The guy on the show got up in the night and emptied his fellow team-mates canteens of their water and burned the socks of another team-mate. He said he did it to weaken them, so it lessens his competition. This guy is a piece of work!

Okay... I'm going to sign off and watch "The Mentalist." Hopefully it will be better than Survivor!

- Kris

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Still working... *smiles*

C'mon over and let's go explore the tidepools! *smiles*

Hi, I hope you have had a good Wednesday. Mine was okay... I had one of my tummy aches, which probably could have been attributed to stress today. My car was in the shop. They couldn't "duplicate" two of the problems, and they said I had a leak and need to have a valve replacement and a thermometer replaced. (They used more technical terms). They said the "dragging" noise might be my rear brakes, which I knew needed replacing and I have a friend that said they would do those... I hope that's all it is. Looks like I'll be out about $500 which is about 1/2 of what I halfway expected it to be. They are also going to take care of my safety inspection while it is in the shop & do an oil change, so those are a couple things I won't have to worry about. I still need to pay a couple hundred for my registrations (on my motorcycle & car).

Work itself went fine, I didn't have any clients scheduled (because my work status has been in doubt). I didn't hear anything back from the contract agency, so I emailed the contact person and asked if my contract and the letter I sent along with it were received. Hopefully I will hear something tomorrow about that issue.

I'm going to sign off... just had to do my daily blog and update on the car & work situation.

- Kris

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I'm still working...

Not sure if I have posted this picture before, I took it a couple weeks ago, it is of the "Trump" hotel in Waikiki. I think people are just starting to move in.

Work-wise, I didn't hear anything from the Contracting company today, not sure if that is good or bad. But... as I think I said yesterday, they didn't give me a sign on bonus, they didn't have to recruit me and there are no training costs. So, I will be darned if I will give them any financial reimbursement if I leave the job (or need to leave it at some point). I kind of thought I would get an email from them, but I didn't hear anything. Hopefully I will still get paid when that time comes! Today I had group, there were 9 participants, including one client I haven't seen for awhile. I was glad to see him. His wife is due in a few weeks and he is SO looking forward to being a daddy, and I know he will be a good one.

Other than that, I have to take my car in tomorrow morning to be worked on. I'm scared to think about how much the bill might be. I think the CV boot(s) is/are going out, I think the air conditioning pump is going out and I have a anti-freeze leak and I'm not sure what that's about. I'm just praying that the engine isn't too bad. I know I need new brakes, I have the back ones and I have a friend who has offered to put them on for me... it's just a matter of when.

After work I had to hurry home because someone was dropping off 45 boxes of 16X16 tile. Did I mention I live on the 2nd floor and each box weighs about 35 pounds? Yep. I carried about about 10 of the boxes, (saved the two guys that were carrying up the tiles a couple trips anyway). Even THEY could only carry one box of tiles up at a time. (They are ceramic tiles). A worker is supposed to be here this weekend to start ripping out the carpeting and tile, and then start laying tile in one of the bedrooms first. I think they said they were going to do the bedrooms, bathroom and hallway first, and then move on into the livingroom/diningroom and kitchen area. Needless to say, I can't have any visitors for the next month or so, my apartment will be a disaster. (The guy doing the work can only work on weekends, he's got another job apparently). It will be nice when it is done, and I will post pictures when it is finished.

Okay... time to sign off. I've been watching "The Biggest Loser" tonight. It is the start of a new season *smiles*

- Kris

Monday, September 14, 2009


Here's the deal as of today. I did get an email stating I *could* work for the new contracting company starting tomorrow and they sent me my new contract. I only have a qualm with one paragraph. It basically states that if I don't start when I am supposed to, that they can bill me for their efforts to recruit a replacement (that could add up to thousands) AND they say that if I leave early before my contract ends, I could be charged $100 per month that I break the contract. SO... if I start working for them tomorrow and quit next month to take the Civil Service job, they can fine me and charge me for up to $1100.

I have a problem with it because a year is a long time to commit and be financially responsible to a company. God forbid, there could be a death in the family that makes me decide to leave the position, or for some reason I have to leave Hawaii. Anything can happen in a year. AND, I don't like that if an opportunity for professional growth comes, that I cannot seek that opportunity.

I am NOT getting a signing bonus (I could see being required to pay it back) and they are NOT paying to train me at all... so I don't think I should be held financially responsible.

Anyway, I put a big X through that paragraph and attached a letter outlining my thoughts about the paragraph and requesting that the modify the contract. I also put a note by where I had to sign the contract stating I did not agree with that particular paragraph. In the contract the company states they are an "at will" employer (meaning THEY could let ME go at any time), but yet by the way the contract is worded, I am not considered an "at will" employee. There's something wrong with that!

So, I faxed the contract in to the company, guess I will know more tomorrow. If they say they won't modify the contract, or accept it with my changes, then I'll be unemployed? I did talk to a couple people (including a couple supervisors) and that is basically said that is what they would do.

As far as the Civil Service position goes, still no more word (other than requirements for more paperwork). Realistically, my decision to go over there is still pending the salary determination. I would like the opportunity to consider it though and pursue it if the pay is reasonable.

Also, right now I'm scheduled to go on a cruise in November. With the new contract, I cannot use any leave for 90 days. So, I informed the new company that I had pre-approval from my supervisor to take that time off (of the cruise). I'll have to take the time off without pay though, now.

Let's see... what else? My car is NOT doing well. I really need to get it into the shop this weekend and I'm fully expecting a HIGH repair bill. Typical of the dealership, they will probably need to wait & order parts. Ugh! And this month I have vehicle registration and inspection costs due (to the tune of another $250 or so).

So... no worries here, right?

- Kris

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Certified or Certifiable??? *smiles*

These are kind of a panoramic view of Ala Moana beach that I took yesterday. It was a beautiful day.

This morning I got up and went to my Basic Life Saving renewal course. It went fine, we got done a little early. There were only four of in the class. Two others in the class work at a couple other hospitals in the area and there was only 1 guy and he is a security person for one of our largest hotels here on the island. I am now "Certified" for the next two years. One less thing to worry about. I have to go to the hospital for a meeting tomorrow so will drop off a copy of my card to the Credentialing Office (because they need it).
This afternoon I've been lazy. I'm still feeling somewhat anti-social today, so I've been kind of hibernating. The puppies don't mind *smiles*
Okay... I'm going to keep this short.
- Kris

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Ahhhhh.... Saturday!

I thought I would post some pictures from when I walked the puppies over to the nearby park area. They LOVE going there and running and playing... it wears them out though (just what I want!). In the two bottom pictures it looks like Peanut is smiling. *smiles*
After the park, I did a couple errands to include mailing some clothes back to my daughter that she left here when she was visiting and I sent off a package to my youngest granddaughter. They should get them sometime later this week.
This afternoon I went to Ala Moana beach and basked in the sun for awhile. (Oh yea, I forgot to mention that I slept til 10am this morning!!! THAT was nice). Laying on the beach is one of the most relaxing things for me to do and it helps a lot with stress. It's my De-Stressor! *smiles*
The Warriors (football) were playing Washington State today, so I listened to the majority of the game while laying on the beach. Not quite as relaxing as listening to music, but I'm glad I was at least had the opportunity to listen to the game. During half-time I went out and did a little water aerobics and listened to my Ishuffle (which was in a waterproof holder), then came back up to the beach to sun-dry.
I just got done taking the puppies for their night walk and now need to finish reviewing the "BLS for Healthcare Providers" manual before I go to bed. Tomorrow morning I will be in the BLS class from 9-11 (I need it for my job and if I take it tomorrow, I can still get reimbursed by my current contracting company).
Okay... I'm going to sign off, it's almost 11am and I don't want to be up TOO late tonight. I still need to respond to a couple emails.

Hugs to all... and Aloha!
- Kris

Friday, September 11, 2009

Happy Birthday PEANUT!

Today is Peanut's 1st birthday. I probably shouldn't have but I picked up these tiny cupcakes and Bruno & I helped her celebrate her birthday. She very rarely gets any kind of "people" food, so this was special treat. In fact, when I first set the cupcake down on the plate, she wouldn't get close to it (any closer than in the top picture).
It's also 9-11 today and while I mourn the victims who passed away in the 9-11 events, I'm more cognizant of all the military members who are fighting in the war and the lives lost there and the injuries they have endured as a result of the 9-11 attack. 2993 people died in the 9-11 attacks and as of today, we have lost 4,343 of our military in Iraq so far and another 825 in Afghanistan. So, over 5,000 of our military, pretty soon we will have lost doubhe the amounl of our military fighing the war than were lost on 9-11. I think I heard how many military members are injured in ratio to those killed, I think it was said that for every US soldier killed 15 are injured. (?).
Okay... my brain is numb... so enough on that.
Work-wise I was VERY busy today (but didn't see any clients). First thing this morning when I got to work, the head boss was there. I was able to sit down and explain my dilemma. He instructed another boss (just under him) to find out about the Credentialing issue. I told them that if I wasn't employed on Tuesday, that I would not be able to maintain my credentialing. The credentialing department said that if I even have a 1 day break in service, I will lose the credentialing. This morning I got the final negotiated salary offer from the contracting company, bringing it to within a dollar of what I make now. And today I spent all afternoon completing the company paperwork. I had to fill out the online application and then about 6:30 tonight I faxed everything I could. BUT, they want me to get a physical and a UA and the company they want me to go through for the urinalysis doesn't have a branch in Hawaii.

So... as of this moment, I don't know if I will be unemployed on Tuesday or employed. (Nothing like taking it down to the wire!). And I still don't know the salary offer on the Civil Service position.
I did get my physical done. My distance eye sight was 20-20 and my reading eye sight was 20-30 or something like that. On the audiology, my hearing has improved in about 3 ranges since last year, but dropped in the high pitch level of my left ear. It didn't help that there was another person in the sound proof room doing the hearing test at the same time and he was NOISY! It seemed like I could hear him every time he pushed the button (like he may have had it against the wall?). Oh well... it's nothing to stop me from getting the Civil Service position. I've been medically cleared for that. But... as I said before, I'm still expected to get a physical clearance for the contracting position, I hope my ability to work Tuesday is not contingent on whether or not I have my physical. (then I'm surely screwed!).
Today all but 1 person went to lunch together. I like it when we go out to eat together, even if isn't to a fancy place.
Okay, I'm going to sign off. I was at work until 7pm tonight and I faxed 25 sheets of employment packet stuff to the new Contracting company. I've been overwhelmed with the paperwork stuff... first it was all the Civil Service paperwork, today it's been the contracting company paperwork and by next Weds I'm supposed to do all the Credentialing paperwork (not the whole packet, but the pieces I need to change clinics).
Right now I feel like I just want to curl up in a ball and go to sleep (still need to take the puppies out for the bedtime walk). And I want to watch the news. I've had one of my tummy aches today, I presume it is stress-induced today.
So... Aloha for today!
- Kris

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Hopefully this will just be a short post. It is past my bedtime, but I wanted to give an update on the job situation.

I dropped off my paperwork for the Civil Service position. They STILL couldn't tell me what the pay will be. Then when I returned to work, I called the office that does my credentialing to see if it will a problem if I switch over to the new contracting agency until I can go over to the Civil Service position. I found out my *current* job ends on Monday (I thought it ended on Tuesday with the end of the pay period) and that if I am *not* employed on Tuesday (i.e. by the new agency) then I will lose my credentialing and have to start the credentialing process all over again which involves a TON more paperwork and will take a lot longer. AND... if I am not IN the Civil Service position by Sept 28th, then the job will most likely have to go back out for advertisement (not due to anything on my part, just the authority to do a direct hire changes on the 1st).

I told my immediate supervisor this afternoon "inside I am having a panic attack." I tend to not show my emotions much on the outside, but I do have to say, this afternoon I was so stressed that I couldn't concentrate on work stuff.

I did fax my "interest" form to the new company (that I would like to work for them), so maybe I will know more tomorrow. And I emailed the Civil Service supervisor about the credentialing situation and the pay issue and she forwarded the email up the chain of command, so hopefully I will know more tomorrow.

Tomorrow (Friday) morning I have to go get a physical, complete with a hearing test and an eye exam (and blood tests). Should be a busy morning.

Monday at the moment is technically my last day (??? who knows????) and I am scheduled to be in a staff meeting most of the morning and then I have three clients scheduled for the afternoon. Whew!

Okay... I'm going to sign off and go TRY to go to sleep... hopefully I can shut down my brain.

- Kris

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

6 more days...

Then this might be me... *smiles* (Hopefully I'm just kidding!).

So... NO real news on the job front today. We had a case staff meeting and I asked my 2nd in charge supervisor if he had called the person at the other contracting agency, he hadn't. But... then I was told that the number 1 boss had called the guy this morning. One of my co-workers, the one retiring, also called him (it's his contracting supervisor) and the guy acknowledged getting my resume & my co-worker put in some very kind words for me.

I had sent an email to the company taking over the new contract for my position yesterday and had thought I would hear from them today, I didn't. (I was attempting to do some more salary negotiation).

I still haven't found out the salary for the Civil Service position, maybe I'll find out more about that tomorrow when I go down to take the paperwork and turn it in. I cannot remember if I mentioned yesterday that I was told that I needed to do a lot more paperwork in regards to getting re-credentialed, but according to the Civil Service supervisor, I shouldn't have to do that. I hope I don't.

My co-workers are really up in arms (and I can't blame them). One of them has been planning to take several weeks off in October because her only child is due. She may have to go on Emergency leave because her daughter has been in labor for a few days now and they've been trying to stop the contractions. She's got some other personal issues going on as well and the combination of everything (including my contract coming to an end) has been and is very stressful on her. That co-worker talked to the number 2 boss this morning to express her feelings about the whole situation. Another co-worker has been tentatively approved for some mainland training and has been looking forward to it for a long time and is worried that the clinic will be too short-staffed and she might not be able to go. I know I am NOT responsible for the way they feel, but I *do* care about them. I know they care about me too and I would be wishing that they wouldn't leave if the situation were reversed (they were possibly leaving to take a position in another clinic). And then there's a part of me that says they would most likely leave to take the position if they were in my shoes.

I don't know... I still have a lot of confusion about the whole situation. I would still say that I'm 85% sure I'm going to take the Civil Service position.

And I dread the fact that I *might* only have three work days remaining. As it is, I've stayed til after 6 last night and tonight (and not to do the things I would want to get done before I leave... like closing charts and making sure my charts were up-to-date). My co-workers don't want me to stay late to get everything accomplished, but I know that there are charts I would not want to inherit the way they are (at least they are in better shape than when two of my former co-workers have left). I dread the fact that if/when I leave, and my other co-worker retires, that my co-workers stand to receive an additional 20 cases each, on top of a caseload that is already not manageable.

I don't like getting "down to the wire" and not know what the salary is that I am to be offered.

So... that's kind of where I'm at with the job situation.

Today we had staffing of cases and I had to document about 30 notes online. It wouldn't have been THAT big of a deal, but they upgraded our online documentation system last night. I knew our department was going to get upgraded at some time, but it would have been nice if they had said that "tomorrow we are upgrading your system and will have someone in your clinic to answer any questions or to address any issues." After some minor mistakes on the first couple notes, I did good until the last note when the software (program) crashed on me. Since it was about 6pm, I said to heck with it and figured I could deal with it tomorrow. There is one thing I AM good at, or dependable about, I don't go home until the paperwork (or computer entry) is done at the end of the day. I have some co-workers who will put notes in at a much later date and say "late entry." But then, I guess that is where we all have our strengths and our weaknesses.

On another note... I'm done with my on-call. I haven't figured up my hours yet, it won't be as many as I have had before because I didn't have to go into the hospital for any emergencies. And I'm thankful for the restful weekend I was able to have (other than the multitude of calls on Saturday).

My youngest granddaughter started 1st grade this week (Yesterday - Tuesday) and is loving it once more. She got placed into a combined 1st-2nd grade class. I think she will do well, she was one of the top students in her class last year, so this will be a good challenge for her. She's got her Grandpa there visiting her (and I'm sure they are both loving every minute and I'm sure Grandpa cried when he saw her).

My oldest granddaughter is back in regular school this year after being an attempt of home-schooling last year. I need to call my oldest daughter to find out how she is doing with school this year. Hopefully better than 2 years ago!

Both granddaughters have birthdays coming up later this month, so I need to get birthday presents into the mail before too long.

Guess that's it for tonight. Hope you all are doing well... send positive thoughts & prayers this way please and I'll keep telling myself to "trust the process" and "everything will work out the way it is supposed to." They are my mantras right now.

- Kris

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

I hate to say I wish it were a Monday...

Yes... I hate to say that I wish it were a Monday, but it was SO busy today. It was almost like a typical 1st day of the week, but then I also had group. I came in this morning and had group to do within an hour, then right after lunch I met with a client who will be leaving Hawaii soon. There just weren't enough hours in the day. And of course, I talked with each of my co-workers about my tentative decision to take the Civil Service position. They aren't happy, but they are understanding - very understanding.
This afternoon I got a call from an office asking about some paperwork I need to complete, which surprised me. I mean, I'm about 85% sure that I'm going to take the position... but I don't know when I would start and I still haven't been told the salary. My future supervisor did say that she requested a 25% bonus for me. I tried to contact the office that takes care of the employment processing, but the person I need to talk to never answered the phone and didn't return my call (I also emailed her and didn't hear anything). Do I see a theme here (about people not responding)?
Right now I don't know what I will be doing in 1 week. My job ends on the 15th at this point. Will I be staying on with the current contractor? Will I be unemployed for a little while? Do I need to get all my charts caught up to date in the next week (probably I should ask myself if that is even possible!).
Okay... I'm going to sign off... tomorrow will be another busy day as we have our case staffing meetings. We had a preliminary meeting last week and darn it - I can't find the copies of my paperwork that shows the edits on them! Hopefully I will have better luck tomorrow.
- Kris

Monday, September 7, 2009

Quiet Labor Day...

Hanuama Bay a few weeks ago..

So, it's been a really quiet day again today. I don't think I have had this quiet of a weekend in a LONG time. Other than taking the puppies for a walk, I have only left twice, once to go to the store yesterday and once to go get something for dinner tonight.

And I haven't done anything. although it has probably been good for me to just rest and take it easy. I've got enough stress in my life at the moment, so having some relatively quiet time is good.

Tomorrow it's back to work, I have group in the morning (Assertiveness?) and then need to make a bunch of contacts (that I mentioned yesterday in my blog... contacting the new contracting company, contacting the supervisor of the Civil Service position... etc).

Okay... I'm going to keep this short.

- Kris

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Quiet Sunday...

A hang-glider over Mokapu'u

Hello... How's your Sunday been? Mine's been quiet. After staying up late last night doing chores, I slept in until noon without any "on-call" wake-ups. I finally headed out to the store about 4:30pm, just to get out of the apartment for a little bit... spending some money on things I probably don't need. Well... I take that back... I did buy some things that I do kind of need.

Not a lot to write about today. I'm just stressed about the job decisions. At this point, I think what I will do, is contact the new contractor and see if they can negotiate a higher salary because I don't need medical and dental insurance. Then I'll contact the person with the Civil Service position to see how the salary and benefit negotiations are going for that position. And right now, I'm tentatively planning to take that position. My feeling is that if one of my head boss isn't interested enough to contact the other contract agency to facilitate that position so that I can stay where I am, then why should *I* stress about leaving? I know that I don't want to put my co-workers in the position of being down 4 staff, with all the additional work they will have. If I think just about myself, then taking the Civil Service position, is probably the best decision. My problem is that I care about the others I work with a lot. (That shouldn't BE a problem).

Oh well... I'm going to sign off.

- Kris

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Lazy & busy Saturday

Mokapu'u Beach

So... yes, it has been a LAZY and a busy day. I've not done much all day, I've been tired and just playing on the computer most of the day, except for those MULTIPLE phone calls I have had to deal with by being on-call. I think every phone call I've had today has been a Medical Social Work call. Those are the kind that... I got flown over here for an emergency, now how do I get back? I will need a walker tomorrow and the only place that has them, won't take a voucher, they want me to pay with a credit card and they don't take American Express. Then, for the one that needs to fly back to another island, how does he get to the airport. I'm so thankful that our head Medical Social Worker doesn't mind phone calls... I had to call her numerous times today!

Last night I got a call about a fight (whatever term they used for it), it wasn't a call that I needed to get (didn't involve domestic violence, child abuse or medical social work), and the turkey had the nerve to call me at 3:30am! UGH! (I have an assigned cell phone & Pager when I am on-call, that's the phone I answer, no one calling has my personal cell phone number).

This afternoon that fire kicked up and closed the H-2 Freeway for several hours, fortunately it didn't burn any houses but it was affecting the Power Lines. They announced on TV this evening (6pm news) that HECO was going to have to shut off power to several communities (including mine), but guess maybe it wasn't up this far because I never lost power. They were only expecting to shut it off for an hour or so. I could look out my bathroom window and see the billowing smoke, and I could smell the smoke - it wasn't too strong or too thick here, it just reminded me (again) of a campfire... it smelled good. I feel bad for all those stuck in traffic today and was thankful that I have not had to run anywhere (i.e. into the hospital to deal with any problems).

Tonight, when I should be trying to get some sleep, I've been catching up on my chores. I hadn't cleaned house since Michelle left. So... I got my Kauai suitcase unpacked (I found your pants Michelle... I'll try to get them sent to you this next week sometime), I'm still doing some laundry and did up a week's worth of dishes.

Well, I'd best sign off and go try to get some sleep and pray for a quiet night.

- Kris

UH beat Central Arkansas!

Today was mainly a paperwork day at work, so that was nice and we got off a little early (okay... I left 15 minutes early). We had to staff some cases this afternoon and one of the head supervisors were there. He's the one that was supposed to call the other "contract" provider to discuss moving me over to that slot within my clinic. He had said he would do it a couple weeks ago. Today is the first time I've seen him since... and guess what... he hadn't called. (My priorities are not HIS priorities).
Tonight I've been feeling increased anxiety & worry. I think in just over a week I will find myself NOT working, but knowing I should be employed within a couple weeks (hopefully at the longest). Either way, I will most likely have a pay cut, not sure yet how much, and wondering if I should stay where I am (I'm worried about leaving my co-workers in a "lurch" because within a couple weeks after I would be gone, they will be down 4 positions (out of about 8).) or I could take a job that doesn't deal with contracts, it is more stable and has better benefits. If I just consider what is best for me, it would be switching clinics. If I do what is in the best interest of my clinic, I stay where I am. Either way, I need to be making a decision soon. I think some of my frustration tonight is because I am angry at the upper boss for not following through and contacting the other contract agency and facilitating that process and I am also a little peeved at the head person for the other Contracting company because he has not returned my calls or emails, even though it would be in his best interest to do so. I don't like being in this "limbo" place. And I should say that I am well-liked & well-respected where I work and my co-workers & supervisor do NOT want to lose me.

Other than that, I *did* get to to go to the UH Warrior Football game tonight. We played Central Arkansas and won 25-20, it was pretty much a nail biter game. One of my co-workers offered to pull "on call" for me tonight so that I could go to the game (Thank you, thank you!). I was especially glad I went because I ran into a former friend/neighbor that used to be on the team and has moved away (from Hawaii). He has come back for a visit and came to the game. He wsn't real thrilled with the way the team was playing though (we had 10 new starters that had not played before in a live audience situation (they've practiced) this was their first time with a large crowd. In the end, I guess what matters, is that we won. It was our first HOME game and there won't be another one for a month. They have some "away" gmes coming up next. (three back-to-back).
Okay... time to sign off, it's after 1am and I'm going to be praying that the on-call phone does NOT go off tonight so I can get some rest. The puppies woke me at 5:30 this morning. UGH!
- Kris

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Less than 24 hours...

Does she look like her Mama or what? *smiles*

SO... today was crazy busy! I had a client come in this morning. She was reluctant to come in, but when I talked to her on the phone the other day, we found something we had in common (we used to live in the same place). Once she came in, several problems were identified and I ended up going with her to another clinic for some additional help. Altogether it took up most of the morning. THEN I scheduled her for an appointment on Monday and forgot that Monday was a holiday. Oops! So, I need to get it rescheduled tomorrow.

This afternoon I met with a couple other clients briefly and then had to get some paperwork done for a meeting tomorrow afternoon. I didn't leave work until about 6:30pm.

Tonight I've just been playing on the computer & playing with my puppies. I had "Charlies" Philly cheesesteak for dinner & fresh strawberries with whip cream for desert, mmmm!

I'm on call and last night I got two calls. One about 7:30 and the other about 3:30am. (ugh). It was a call that *could* have waited until this morning... but I know they were just doing their job. So far no calls for tonight and tomorrow night a co-workers is going to cover for me for awhile so I can go watch the UH FOOTBALL team play it's first game of the season.

LESS than 24 hours until the 1st UH football game of the season! YEA!

Okay... time to sign off. Hope you are all doing okay out there! I haven't heard from Bette or Janis for awhile (Auzzie Janis).

Hugs & Aloha to all!
- Kris

P.S. please remember to go vote for my photo!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Photo contest...

Aloha! It's HAPPY HUMP day... (middle of the workweek). I've submitted the photo above into a National Geographic photo contest. I'd like you to vote for my photo. You'll have to act quickly though, as the voting ends September 8th. Thanks... here's the link:
I don't know where the time went today. This morning I got three-quarters of the way to work and had to turn around, there had been an accident that closed the road. Darn it! So... I had to turn around and go the long way (at least there is an alternative way to go). I decided that since I had to take the detour, I'd stop along the way and pick up some Portuguese Donuts, called "Malasadas" - they are delicious & of course, everyone appreciated them.
Job situation wise... one of my co-workers (the one leaving) called his contracting company (because I haven't heard from them) and got in touch with someone in the Administration section. She hadn't seen my resume, or my emails and her boss - the one I sent them too, is now on leave for a week. She assured me she would try to find my information, call her boss when she could (he was on an airline flight) and have him call me tomorrow. She said no one is slated for the position and because she is the one that does most of the work, she was really interested in pursuing my interest in the position. (It will be a LOT less work on their part). My one co-worker said that the position would probably pay a couple thousand less a year than I am making now, and it isn't available til the end of the month, but one nice thing is that they do have positions overseas (and pay moving expenses), so if I wanted to move within the company later, I could.

But... at the moment... I am still awaiting any answers on that position.
So... of course... wouldn't you know it. The Government position that I also applied to, is available and was offered to me today, pending a physical and all the other paperwork that working for the government requires. YIKES! That means within the next day or two (or at minimum the next week) I need to figure out what I want to do. I don't know what the pay will be for the Government position yet. I am 99% sure it WON'T be a pay raise... but it has some good benefits (like over 3 weeks of vacation time and 2+ weeks of sick leave), and it would allow me to travel as well.
I did hear back from the company that won the contract for my current position. I *may* be able to negotiate with them a little more on the pay issue, because I *don't* need the healthcare benefits (I already have them), but they ONLY offer 2 weeks of paid time off a year, and that includes time off for sick leave. SO... knowing I want to take off at least a week after Thanksgiving and at least 2 weeks next May, that would be like losing even more income at that point. I also realize though, that my leave time in November (if I *do* get to go), will more than likely be leave without pay time. At least most of it. I don't expect I'll have too much leave accrued in a couple months and that's even depending on when I can take the other position, either in my current clinic or the Government position.
Ok... nuff about job stuff. The only interesting tonight is that there is a brush fire about 20 miles away, but as the wind is blowing tonight, the smoke smell is coming into my apartment and I have to say it smells wonderful. It smells like I am sitting by a campfire. It's not too overwhelming, but it is fragrant and makes me want to go camping. *smiles* I'm not getting the smoke from the fire either... just the aroma! And no homes are threatened either (thank goodness!).
Time to sign off and take the dogs out for their nightly walk (they get one when I get home and they get one before I go to bed... and first thing in the morning when I get up).
- Kris

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Tuesday, Tuesday...


Not a whole lot to write about today. I had group this morning with 9 participants, so very manageable. This afternoon was spent doing some case management and documenting the group notes.
No news on the job situation, I told my supervisor that this is one of those times where "no news" is NOT good news. And... I keep reminding myself to continue to "trust the process."
Tonight I'm watching "America's Got Talent." I love music, it is a HUGE part of my life and who I am, and I love it when people can share their God given talents... so I enjoy the show!
Okay... time to sign off, I think I'll go have some fresh strawberries & whipped cream for a late desert. Have to enjoy my tonight as I will be on-call for the rest of the week.
- Kris