Saturday, May 31, 2014

Got a lot done today

Café set up at Utah Beach where we had lunch in Normandy.

So, yes, I did get a lot done today I think.  I went and got my nails done and then went ahead and got a Pedicure as well.  Then I picked up a birthday card for my younger sister as her birthday is in a couple weeks (now... if I can just fill it out and get it sent in the mail!).  Then I dropped of some plastic bottles for recycling and did a little grocery shopping.  Stopped and got some gas, and then got my car washed.  At home... other than putting things away and doing a load of laundry... not so productive.

Today is my youngest daughter's birthday. I was going to try and call her, but she is out shopping, so I exchanged some "messages" with her.

Today... we also learned that Bowe Bergdahl has been released into American custody. There are rumors that he told people he was going to leave and that he left his rifle on his bed and walked off the military installation. I wonder if he has had regrets about doing that.  I wonder if spending almost 5 years in Taliban custody is justice served?  I *am* glad that he has been released (I have his MIA/POW bracelet).  I am sure that his parents cried when they heard the news and cannot WAIT to set eyes on him.  My guess is that he will have some rehabilitation to go through... I hope he is able to find a good therapist/counselor to work with when he returns to Idaho (I'm guessing he will get out of the military now?).

Okay... it's past midnight... signing off...

(oh yea... I got woke up about 2:30 am with the on call phone ringing... and then had to spend about an hour on the phone... ugh!).

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Friday, May 30, 2014

Work's all done!



 Some floral photos I took tonight while walking the dogs...
And the sunset at the end of the day (taken about 10pm!).

Work went okay... had a meeting first thing this morning, then a cancellation that allowed me to work on the notes from yesterday, then I had to write 4 more notes from this morning's appointments.  BUT... I worked through lunch and got my notes all done and then spent the afternoon doing some training.  One of the trainings was about treatment plans, they want everyone to do a cookie-cutter treatment plan (it looks like we can use a couple different formats, and fortunately, the way I do mine now, is a lot like one of the formats).  I think the only thing I struggle with, is when dealing with more than one person in a session (i.e. couple or family), trying to say that by X date, they will be X better (i.e. by Aug 15th, the conflict in the resolution will be decreased by 75%).  I wish I had a magic wand or a crystal ball to know that.  Anyway... at least I got all my work done today, which is always a nice feeling at the end of the week.

Other than that... I want to get on my soap box about the whole VA (Veteran's Admin) situation.  I think they are making a HUGE deal out of it.  VA hospitals are no different from other hospitals. People die.  People are turned away (even from your local hospital).  They sound like getting timely healthcare for Vets is a new problem. It isn't.  Way back 25 years ago or so, when my husband got out of the military and tried to get hooked up with the VA, it took at least 6 months before he was able to get an appointment. So... this current crisis isn't anything new.  And I do know someone that used to work at the Phoenix VA and they said when they were working there... "cooking the books" was going on.  Rather than keep complaining about it... why don't they focus on WHY they felt they needed to manipulate the appointment books.  I know Vets are supposed to be seen for their first appointment within a certain amount of time.  I personally think it is because with the HUGE influx of Veterans from all the wars (Afghanistan and Iraq especially), that there is not enough staff.  If staffing at these facilities were at adequate levels, they probably wouldn't feel the need to turn Vets away.

Anyway... that's my rant for the day.  (And I'm a Vet). 

Other than that... I'm dealing with a fever blister on my lip.  I hope I am not getting back to the point I was last year when my lips blistered REALLY bad. Man, that was painful (and not fun to look at). I don't know if it is an allergic reaction or what.  Wish I could figure it out.  I keep using medicated blistex, but it doesn't seem to be helping much.

Okay... it's almost 11pm, so I'd better sign off.  Please pray for a friend of mine. Her initials are K.H... she's struggling right now (emotionally) and is so close to wanting to take her life. I've known her since grade school.  I wish she weren't so far away.

Time to sign off...

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Busy day!


 More flower pictures from my neighborhood...
 And flowers from in front of my house!
The nearby field is growing so tall, every day I expect to come home and find that they have finally mowed it... meanwhile for the dogs it is like walking through a green tunnel! *smiles*

Work was fairly busy today, although my last appointment of the day was a cancellation, so that allowed me to get most of my notes done from yesterday and today (I just have one more set of notes to write).

Tonight I had my job interview, I thought it went pretty well.  They said I should know within a couple weeks whether or not I am offered the job. So... hopefully by the middle of June I will hear  more. And of course... typical... they want someone "yesterday" and are ambitious about when the person could start.  I don't think it would take me any longer to start than anyone else (other than someone in the area, but it sounds like they have tapped out those resources).  Whoever gets started has to go through all the necessary paperwork (and for any government job, that is a LOT of paperwork).  So... if offered and IF I decide to accept... then it becomes a hurry up and wait process, a series of hurry and wait processes.  Not going to say where the job is... because I feel like if I do, I might jinx it.  It will be a challenge if I *do* accept the position in many ways, but it would be a promotion and that is what is at the forefront of my thought processes right now.

So... do I let my supervisor know I interviewed for a job tonight or wait and see if I get an offer?  Hmmm...

Okay... signing off...

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

What a wonderful evening...




Some photos from tonight!

Work went okay today, all my clients showed up, so it was steadily busy.  Tomorrow is supposed to be just as busy, but I will have more notes to write (seeing more people). 

After work I picked up a woman named "Ali", she's a Social Worker here doing temp work (90 days).  It was such a pleasure to meet her and I felt like we hit it off right away (she's within a year of my age... and a reformed Mormon! *smiles*).  We have a mutual friend (who is coming over from England in 2 weeks to see her).  She's from Alaska... so we have that "Alaskan" connection going.  I picked her up at her hotel, brought her home with me and we took the dogs for a short walk, then we went down to a local "Gausthaus" (hotel/restaurant) in the woods near where I live and had some dinner (I had trout filets and potatoes and a salad).  Then I took her home about 9pm. (now it's 10:45pm and past my bedtime).

Keep your fingers crossed for me, it sounds like I will have a job interview for a position, tomorrow evening. And it helps that someone has put in a good word for me... even if offered the job (in a couple weeks), and if I make it through all the scrutiny they are putting everyone through now... I'm sure I would not get there before September. I'm keeping it a little on the "mum" side at the moment because I don't want to jinx myself too much.

Okay... gotta sign off and head to bed.

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Stayed home today...




This church is in Sainte-Mere-Eglise.  On June 6th, at about 1am, 15,000 paratroopers from the 82nd and the 101st Airborne Divisions were dropped above and around this town.  The parachute drop was not very precise, so that only about 6,000 landed in a position to fight. Many were scattered, including John Steele who was caught by his parachute on the steeple of this church and was wounded by German fire.  These days there is a dummy figure attached to the church to recall this event.

So... I did stay home today and rested all day. It was nice!  So... not much to write about.

I'm going to sign off... it's already 10pm.

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Monday, May 26, 2014

Happy Memorial Day!



Visiting the American Cemetery in Normandy yesterday was amazing!

I did make it home okay today.  It was so late last night when we got to Laura's house, it was nice to sleep in. Then I did some shopping up at the American base in the area and grabbed a late lunch before heading home.  Coming home it was very rainy in spots, but the traffic wasn't too bad.

I wasn't able to get in touch with my dog sitter on my way home, so I came home and unpacked and put everything away and got some laundry going. I also uploaded my photos (about 500) to my computer.

The doggies were SO excited to see me! *smiles*

Okay... it's about 11pm, time to head to bed.

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Point Du Hoc






Some photos from today.  We went to Utah Beach, Maisy Camp, Point Du Hoc and Omaha Beach.  It's been a long, good day!

Keeping this short as it is after 11pm. G'night!

Auf Weidersehen, Kris



Friday, May 23, 2014

It was a 450 mile drive over to Normandy today.  All in all. It wasn't a bad drive.  After we checked into our hotel, and checked out Omaha Beach, we drove 2 MORE hours to go see Mont St Michel (below), which is on the top 100 places to visit in the world list. 


I believe this is Omaha Beach

Our quaint hotel for the weekend.

Okay, another late night, it's 1am... Time to head to bed.

Auf Weidersehen,
 - Kris

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Short post - late night!

And, no photo tonight because I am in travel mode.  I'm at my friend Laura's house up near Ramstein, spending the night here.  Work went okay, had a no show and a cancellation.  But at least all my notes are done and I got some "mandatory" training done.  I left from work and went to Ramstein, to the military exchange there.  I ran into several people I know, and had dinner at "Macaroni Grill", my "usual" - Lobster Ravioli.  Then I stopped and filled up the gas tank.  Now it's midnight and I had better get to sleep, morning will come early!!!  Tomorrow we are headed over to Normandy, and will be staying about 5 mins from Omaha Beach. 

Auf Weidersehen,
-Kris

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Quiet night at home



Sunset photos from tonight. *smiles* 

Work was steadily busy today... although it started off with the dreaded Wednesday meeting that no one really likes.  And my one co-worker who is chronically late... didn't even make it... she set herself up with an appointment (supposedly) and my Supervisor (who should have been there to run the meeting) showed up about 15 minutes late. Sheesh.

I did have one "no-show" today, but then I found out that the person was in the hospital (good reason to miss an appointment). My last appointment of the day was a family, so tomorrow I have to get their 4 notes typed up.  Thankfully, I've blocked out my last appointment of the day, so I can get my afternoon appointments done before I leave.

And it's 10pm and I haven't packed.  I did get the dogs dropped off at the Dog Sitter's tonight and that's why it is so quiet here at home tonight.  I'm hoping to leave straight from work tomorrow to head up to my friend Laura's house where I'll spend the night, and then Friday we are heading to Normandy. And looking at the weather forecast, it is predicted to rain all weekend. (I've heard that it is often rainy up in that area).

Okay... signing off... just wanted to get a post done before I head to bed.

G'night!

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

This week is going to go fast!


This past Saturday I picked up some Lillis... I don't think I realized how much they smell (and not as pretty as I would like).  Only two of the blossoms have opened up... they sure are pretty!

This morning I got up and took my friend Karla to the airport, it was good to have her here, I wish she could have been here a little longer.  Wow, did she have to go through some hassles when she began her trip to Europe (flight delays, paying a cabbie 300 euros to take her from one city to another... etc). Hopefully her trip home will go MUCH smoother!

After I dropped her off, I stopped by the car shop so that they could reset something on my car's computer (so it would stop saying I needed maintenance).  It didn't take very long and then I headed into work, getting there when I had said I would be there.  I met with my supervisor briefly and then got busy with my own work. I got yesterday afternoon's notes done and then had 3-4 appointments today (I'm still amazed at how slow it has been at work!).  My supervisor and the other Social Worker were at a meeting all afternoon, so when the clock said 4:30 I left!  I had  to stop by the Post Office and mail off a package to my friend Andrea in Colorado. I got that home and took the dogs out for a short walk (it was around 80* this afternoon!). 

Then I came home and checked email and Facebook and then laid down for a short nap. *smiles*  I made some dinner and have been watching "The Voice." And surprise, surprise... it's not even 8:30pm as I write this tonight. I might get to bed shortly after 9pm tonight! I still need to take the dogs out one last time before bed.

Okay... signing off.

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

P.S. The short week comment is because tomorrow after work I will be taking the dogs over to the Dog Sitter's, and then Thursday after work, I will be hopefully leaving directly from work to go to my friend Laura's house. From there, on Friday morning early (I hope), we will be heading to Normandy.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Quick post on the Monday night



 So... how random. I was coming back from dinner with my friend who is here visiting for 1 night from Hawaii... and we see these Camels in the field in the town next door! (And some Llama!).  I had to chuckle, because we watched as they ran too and from across the field and then actually headed into the town on the road (cars had to stop for them).  I just thought it was funny that my friend would come to Germany and find camels here on the one night she is here! (They are setting up a circus for this coming weekend).


We had a beautiful sunset again tonight.

Today went okay, I only had 1 meeting and 1 appointment this morning and then I managed to get my assessment typed up from last week and my note written from this morning. I was supposed to be off at 1:30, and my supervisor and the other Domestic Violence Social Worker both went to a training at 12:30pm (and it was supposed to be over at 2:30pm)... I don't know why they both went today, my understanding was that it was recommended, but not mandatory.  ANYWAY... wouldn't you know it... about 1:15 I got a call on the "on call" phone and I spent the next 45 minutes or so dealing with it (and typing it up!).  Thankfully I haven't heard any more about it since then (tonight).

I got out of work about 2 and had to be on the train at one train stop that is on my way home by 2:30.  I got there with about 10 minutes to spare (after I paid for parking and put the ticket in the window). There were a couple people ahead of me at the machine where you pay for your train ticket, and the person 2 people in front of (at the machine when I got there) was trying to pay for his (and a friend's) ticket with a credit card and it kept getting rejected. I think his friend ended up giving him the $ to pay cash for the ticket... by then there was about 5 minutes left before the train was to arrive... and I still had one person in front of me... she tried to pay with coins, but it kept rejecting it, thankfully she was prepared to pay with a bill and did. I made the train.  I got down to the main train station about 10 minutes before my friend Karla was due to arrive... but couldn't find anywhere that was announcing arrival times/platforms... so had to go to an Information booth (which thankfully wasn't too busy!)... and found out which platform. AND... thankfully, her train was about 5 minutes late... so she didn't have to wait on me... and between the 5 min delay and how long it took her to get her luggage off the train... I got to wait (relax) about 10 minutes.  Then we went and hopped on an "S-Bahn" (local train) to come back out to near where I live.  I brought her home, showed her the house, we took the dogs for a 1/2 mile walk... then came home for about 30 minutes before we headed out to dinner at my favorite restaurant.  She REALLY enjoyed the food there! She got a sampler platter of Swabian food. I got my usual pork tenderloins in gravy. 

It was on our way home from the restaurant when we went through a town that is getting ready for a circus and saw their llamas and camels running loose. So we stopped to take some photos.  When we got home, we took the dogs out for another walk... about a mile. (Up to the "4 corners" and back). She has really enjoyed just being here for a night... wish it were longer so she could have at least seen a little of Stuttgart.

She flies out in the AM, I'll be dropping her off about 8am at the airport and then heading into work.

Okay... now it's 11pm, I'd better sign off and head to bed. It's going to be another short night.

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Beautiful Sunday!


 I walked into town this afternoon (took the dogs for a walk) and we watched some of the little kids competing in the "International Rollerblading Competition" that our little town hosts every year. Yesterday was the "International" day, today was for Germans... and when I was down there, it was the little tykes.

Another beautiful sunset tonight! *smiles*

Well... I've been working on getting the house straightened up today. It's 9:30pm and I still need to vacuum and mop the main floor.  AND put clothes away that I have been washing this afternoon.

I feel like I've been somewhat productive. I did give the kitchen a fairly good cleaning.  I did give the dogs a bath today (upstairs) and then vacuumed up there and made sure everything is ready for my guest tomorrow.  I have dusted, I washed my kitchen window. I've wiped down the counters a couple times. I've had the dogs out 3-4 times today.

But... since I have still got stuff to do... I'll keep this short for today.

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Somewhat busy Saturday

 I love this little guy tucked away in an alcove on one of the paths that I walk my dogs.
 In a neighbor's yard... tulip season is about over...
This photo doesn't do this person's "yard" justice. It's around the corner from where I live, but they have so many gorgeous plants outside, it's just beautiful!

This morning as I was laying in bed... Peanut started making noises like she was going to puke... so I grabbed her and flipped her over me towards the outside of the bed, just in time for her to "let loose!"  Needless to say... I got to change my bedding, (and my bedskirt) and wipe up a lot of puke that went way too far... and then mop my floor as well.  She's been okay all day since then... although tonight she did poop on the potty pad in the laundry room, it wasn't really diarrhea, but it wasn't as hard as I'd like to see it either.

I've been kind of putzing around the house today, I did sweep the main floor (I get tired of all the dirt that gets tracked in (hey... I take my shoes off at the door... but still manage to get dirt tracked in)... and the dog hair that seems to accumulate by leaps and bounds.

Later this afternoon I went to the German store (REAL that is German's version of Walmart superstore). I wanted to pick up some flowers and drop off empty pop bottles (I didn't buy any soda because I still have plenty). 

Tonight I went across the street to my neighbor's house and had a barbeque with them. That was nice, it was an enjoyable dinner and I didn't leave over there until almost 11pm!

Now it is after midnight... time to sign off and head to bed.

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Friday, May 16, 2014

Friday finally!

 The evening sky over my little town
 Sunset time once more!
 Love the contrails in the sky
What's different about this photo?  Well, instead of saying West and East (W & E)... it has West and "Ost" (East in German). This is the weather vane on my neighbor's house.

Work went okay today... but as I predicted, my one co-worker came in and complained because I didn't talk to her about the birthday cake/card for our supervisor.... ugh.

Other than that, my appointments all showed up, but this afternoon I was able to get all my notes done, with the exception of one assessment from yesterday. I think I should be able to get that done on Monday morning.

Peanut is doing somewhat better... no throwing up today and her Bowel movements seem to have a little bit of form (but are still very soft).

Okay... stayed up way too late messing around tonight and now it's 1am, so I'm signing off.

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Back on call... hoping for a quiet week

Well, I'm trying to get my blog done earlier tonight (instead of waiting to see if it is worth taking a sunset photo and putting it on here tonight). I've been staying up past 10pm and haven't been sleeping well, so thought I'd try going to bed right after 9 tonight.

Today - not sure how to describe it.  I had someone open up to me, that hadn't been honest to someone else. I felt honored that I could be there for them and I hope I can continue to be there for them when they are in need in the future.  I'm also reminded that one of my best traits (I think) is my ability to establish rapport and I always look for *some* way to make a connection with people. 

This morning there was an issue that took up most of my morning (okay... 2 hours or so). I did make my boss an Angel Food cake last night and brought that in, along with a birthday card (that everyone - and her) thought was cute. I'll probably hear it from my one co-worker tomorrow (who I was upset with yesterday and didn't want anything to do with!)... my boss will be out. I'll "hear" about it tomorrow because I didn't coordinate with her.  Oh well... go kiss a frog.

Tomorrow I have a couple appointments in the morning and then it looks like we have a "free" afternoon. I've got to review all those notes (something I'm dreading) and I need to finish up my notes from yesterday and today.  I am also expected to watch a couple videos at some point in the next week... and tomorrow afternoon will be the best chance.

Other than that... Peanut isn't eating and she's had more diarrhea. At this point, I'm just getting her back on the Imodium a couple times a day and the other liquid medication that is supposed to help her tummy as well. I think I just let her start on regular food sooner than I should have.  I hope she gets her tummy healed soon!

Okay... I'm going to sign off for another night.

Auf Wiedersehen!
- Kris