Wednesday, August 26, 2009

How to defeat dust mites and alienate your neighbors

Today I just might change your life, if you
a) have carpet in your habitat
b) hate to vacuum.

In a few short steps, I will now explain to you my proven, evidence-based method to turn you into a lover of vacuuming. THIS INCREDIBLE PROGRAM IS FREE OF CHARGE.

1. Get a cat
-the more, the merrier (and the faster this program will work!)
-bonus for long-haired varietals
2. Carry on as usual for one week.
3. Vacuum. Now bear with me - it's just the one time. You don't even have to move the furniture.
4. Clean out the inside of your vacuum/vacuum bag and filter. Force yourself to acknowledge the vast amounts of pet hair and dander. If you don't immediately feel like vacuuming again, look a little longer.

Personal Testimonial: This program has so radically changed my life, that now, all I want to do is vacuum. Before, I was the kind of wife who would secretly put off vacuuming for so long that my husband would feel guilty and do it. In the last week, I have vacuumed the floors three times, the rugs, and the furniture. I have vacuumed everything that is not nailed down, and have even discovered this great FREE BONUS TIP: Your vacuum most likely has a hose/brush attachment system that will let you vacuum all over and around those inconveniently nailed down things. This same hose is great for removing pet hair from clothing!

*Side effects may include: worn carpets, soreness in the neck, back and arms, a staggeringly high electric bill, and a drastic reduction in the pet hair, dust, and muck in your carpets. You may or may not find that once you begin this program, you are unable to do anything without vacuuming first. There are currently no support groups for those who are struggling with over-vacuuming, however, one will be starting at the Klekov residence as soon as I figure out how I'd hear you knocking over the sound of the vacuum. This program may also be detrimental to your relationships with neighbors and/or your adopted pets, if they should fear the noise of the vacuum.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Things to be glad for

  1. Franc feels like a million dollars after the bath he had today. (It also turns out he's not nearly as fat as we took him for - just fluffy.)
  2. Tomorrow I get to jet ski at work.
  3. Having plenty.
  4. I overheard a client telling my newest resident how nice I am. (Shut up, Lexi! I am too nice! At least professionally.)
  5. One great husband.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Part of a complete breakfast

Get it? Part? We ate the rest.

If you don't have blueberries in your freezer this time of year, America, you have missed the boat. (Or you live someplace with a late blueberry crop, and please invite me over to pick.)

Yesterday Lexi and Ben came over for an early breakfast, and amazing-because-I-like-sleeping-in, I pulled off a delicious blueberry coffee cake. I am the sloth of kitchens - I enjoy chopping, whipping, sauteeing and all of it, but I'm very, very slow. On Friday night I mixed my dry ingredients and assembled everything else, which saved time Saturday morning (and the coffee cake, because you should never measure baking soda while sleep deprived).

Whole Wheat Blueberry Coffee Cake
Heat oven to 350. In a large bowl, mix until blended:
2 c. whole wheat flour
3/4 c. sugar
1 TBS baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/3 c. oil
1 c. milk (I used soy)
1 egg
zest of 1 lemon
Beat the mixture for 2 minutes, then spread in a greased 9x13 pan. Spread a heaping cup (or two) of frozen blueberries over the top, and sprinkle with streusel made from following ingredients, lightly tossed with a fork:
1/3 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. whole wheat flour
1 tsp cinnamon
enough oil to moisten - probably 1-2 TBS
(Also, nuts would be delicious.) Bake about 40 minutes, or until the cake is set with lightly browned edges.

Now I'm off to hide in the bathroom, because I am terrified of cicadas, and Abe just gave the cats one to play with. It's another wild weekend at my house....

Friday, August 21, 2009

You get what you pay for

Today I went to Walmart for work. They did not sell whole wheat flour (which I needed), and I felt jealous of all kids shopping for school supplies. The woman getting eggs out from the refrigerator case in front of me said “Be sure to check your eggs. My carton was missing one." When I got home and emptied my bags, my carton was missing an egg. And while I was not paying attention, the cashier put my four items into three bags. Global warming says thanks, Walmart.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Snugglefest 2009

What's new since the last time I blogged? Well, for starters, he is:

It's my nephew, making his international internet debut! His name is Samson, and he was born yesterday morning. Obviously, snuggling his sweet cheeks has taken priority over updating my blog.

Other things have also been more important, like my mystery illness. Symptoms: 2. Doctor's visits: 2. Vicoden prescribed: 30. Kidney Ultrasounds: 1. Referrals made: 1. Calls back from the doctor I've been referred to: 0. Days ago: 3. Sick hours used: 30.

Today I did finally go back to work. I wore mascara and put on a cute outfit to convince myself that I Feel Great. Something in the kitchen garbage was smelling rotten, so I got my things together to take the trash out on my way. I had parked a ways from the apartment because I wanted my car to be in the shade, so of course as I was locking the door and heading down the stairs, it started to pour. And in a moment unrelated to those 30 vicoden (I swear I haven't taken one in days), I stood in the rain for a good 20 seconds wrestling with the trunk of my car before I realized it was strapped shut by the bike rack we had used over the weekend. By the time I put the rotten garbage in the car with me, I was drenched. Which was awesome, since I had taken the time this morning to actually Iron. And I think that when you're wet, you're more absorbant of stenches.

I dried out eventually, and as soon as I did, my pen broke and leaked ink all over my skirt. I curse you now, Sharpie pen that I loved.

Welcome back to the world, little kidneys.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Thank you, Pisgah National Forest

This weekend Abe and I had a tremendous adventure in Transylvania County. I checked the weather before we left, when I was deciding whether to take my cute-as-a-button pumas or my water-resistant teva shoes which look like duck feet (so much that Teva apparently erased all evidence of them on the internet. They are a little bit like these, only red and for women. Also, feel free to notice that even one of the reviewers on that website said they "look odd"). The weatherman said there was a 20% chance of rain, so I went with the cute pumas and completely forgot my raincoat, which is so cute, from Goodwill, and has a rainbow zipper.

It of course started pouring less than 2 minutes after we pulled into the parking lot on Turkey Pen Road. Abe and I were 100% soaked by the time we built our own camp site in the woods (don't tell, as I believe that may have been illegal), and there is now a "20%" chance that I'll never return to for my weather forecasting needs (At, see,"20%" apparently means "100%. Look out, weatherman. Now I'm catching on. I'm speaking your language). And a 20% chance that I'll find that weatherman and attack him with a hose on the day he's wearing his cute pumas. Lucky for weatherman, we had a good time in spite of the rain. We "enjoyed the instant gratification of a delicious Cup Noodles," floated down the river on inner tubes, befriended the wildlife (by which of course I mean that I found a tiny frog, and Abe put it on his nose so we could take hilarious pictures), and rode our bikes until Abe's pedal fell off (which was not probably so long as it sounds).

Then we came home without getting lost to a clean house and very grateful kittens (at least until they realized we'd put them back on their feeding regimen. Sorry, fat Franc). We unpacked, did a little yoga (Abe said "Turn it down!" when I started the video, "This is embarrassing!"), and washed clothes using my Highly Successful homemade laundry detergent.

So thank you, Pisgah National Forest, for this weekend, which was memorable, crazy fun, and with my favorite husband.

P.S. This is all about saving water.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Bare minimum

I finally got around to reading the minutes from our last Case Coordinator meeting. The first note was that we were praised for our work maintaining a client with dual diagnosis (mental health and substance abuse issues). We were apparently thanked for being "tolerable," which I find hilarious because that's about how I feel toward my job right now. I guess it's mutual.

ps) If you are tempted to adopt one or more adorable kittens, please be advised that they may grow up to eat your yoga mat and leave their hair all over the place. Also, no matter how cute they are, or charming, they will not ever help clean the bathroom.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

first time for everything

Yesterday, someone at work called me a "white bitch." (SOMEONE WHOSE CESAREAN INCISION I CHECKED ON FRIDAY ARE YOU SERIOUS?! It sounds obvious, but I now know it to be true: Mental health issues will drive you crazy.) I'm sure plenty of residents have called me much worse names in the privacy of their rooms, or as they walk away from me down the hall, but I've never heard it. I realized I've never been really cussed out before.

So I can check that off my list of things to do before I die.

The same client also verbally assaulted another resident , who then came to me worried that she would retaliate, stressed that she has to deal with this during her pregnancy, and clearly very hurt. (She said her peer was afflicted by a demon. Should I have argued?) I had to tell her not to personalize, to be the bigger person, and to remember that this is the stuff that Makes Us Stronger.

Then I was so strong that I turned green and sinewy and huge, and burst out of my clothing. (Side note: How do I feel that the Incredible Hulk and I have the same haircut? I feel unoriginal.) And obviously, after that happened, I needed a day off. So hooray! Today I'm celebrating My Sister's 26th Birthday all day long.

Saturday, August 1, 2009


Have you ever seen the incision made for a cesarean section? If you have, I'm sorry, because on Friday, I did too. I'm not talking about the long vertical kind of incision - I'm talking about the horizontal cut they make underneath the belly. Low. So low, I won't even tell you. (Can I go ahead and say that examining cesarean incisions is Not My Job?)

But it was my schizophrenic client, and she came to me so pathetically, and told me she was supposed to check it every day, but couldn't see it over her stomach. And could I please come and look at it? I couldn't say no (really? really, Karen, you couldn't say no? If you had wanted to be a nurse, you could happily be paid a lot more. But you didn't, you aren't, and you should have said no). I went with my client to her room, and she carefully closed the door behind me. It occurred to me to ask what I would be checking for. "Leakage," she said, "or if it's open at all." It occurred to me that if I saw leakage or openings, I would probably pass out. I think I turned two shades whiter. She told me to come in to the bathroom, and closed that door as well. "I'm not going to hurt you, miss," she said, probably noticing that I appeared close to passing out. I reassured her that I'm not afraid of her (just her possible pus or internal organs falling out), and I know she's not dangerous. "I've had a rough life, that's all, miss." She peeled her layers of clothing up and down, and down and down and down, and that's all I'm going to tell you about exactly how low they cut a woman to take out her baby.

And how does it cut to lose your child? Earlier that day CPS took custody of her child (a beautiful girl, just a week old). She sounded angry when she told me she doesn't like the foster mother. She sounded ready to cry when she said "I'm hurting and I'm feeling let down." Then she changed the subject. She told me she had been hit in the head, and if I touched it, I could feel the bump. I asked how it happened, and she told me it was when she was a baby. She said "I haven't been right since. That's trauma." The tears came when she said "That's trauma, miss. It stays with you for the rest of your life."