Archive for "Life"
My 40 Under 40 commemorative plaque arrived at work last week. Brian was nice enough to come to my work that same day to hang it up for me.
Of course, he had to go home, change out of his suit, and take care of the dogs first. Then he came back to help me. Do I have the best husband or what?
We tried a couple of different spots before deciding it should go under my diplomas because there’s not really any place else suitable.
Here’s Brian showing me a picture that he took of his handiwork.
Here it is on the wall, unobstructed by plastic.
It’s the perfect companion for the little plaques that they gave us at the awards dinner a few weeks ago.
Next time you’re having a bad day, picture this.
I’m not exactly sure when or how this happened. I had training in Topeka a week and a half ago so I reserved the green Volt for my up and back trip. People always ask me why I take the garish, obnoxiously wrapped Volt as opposed to the other, much better, cars in our fleet. When I need to reserve a vehicle, the green Volt is usually the only one that’s available because no one likes it. I don’t even bother checking the other cars anymore. I just automatically reserve the ugly green one.
Anyway, I noticed that the tires are really sensitive to temperature changes. I’ve lost count how many times I’ve gotten the low tire pressure alert and had to air it up. It’s not too bad when I get the alert message in Wichita because I always know I can get free air at any of the QT locations in town. I hate it when it happens while I’m in Topeka because none of their gas stations have free air. You have to put money in the machine and I never have any quarters on me.
One of the times it happened a few months ago, I just happened to visit one of my friends in Topeka. Her husband owns an air compressor so he took care of airing up the tires for me while we hung out. That was convenient. However, they’re super busy people too so I can’t just pop in every time I need air in the my tires.
There’s a BP down the street from my hotel – my home away from home – that has an air compressor but it costs .75 cents to make it run. These days I just make sure I always have a bunch of quarters with me.
On this particular day, I got to Topeka an hour ahead of the 10 AM training start time because I normally leave the house at 7 AM so I just left at my regular time. Anyway, it worked out because our project manager sent a meeting request the night before about a 9 AM meeting. I didn’t see the email but I just happened to be in Topeka already so I was able to attend. I remember getting a text asking if I was coming to the meeting as I was parking the car. “What meeting?” I thought. Note to self: check work email before going to bed at night just in case there are last minute meeting invites.
I parked a little sloppy because, even though I was an hour early for training, I was running a few minutes late for the 9 AM meeting. Maybe there was a tire pressure alert but I didn’t notice it because I was in a hurry? I really don’t remember seeing it, though. The only notification I got was an email from the fleet manager along with a picture of the flat tire. One of my coworkers saw the car in the garage and reported it. That was fortunate because they were able to replace the tire while I was in training.
Here’s how the tire looked when I returned to the parking garage. Brian was worried that they were going to replace it with a spare and I wouldn’t be able to go faster than 50 mph on the turnpike. They got a real tire on it, though. And, I’m glad it was fixed while I was in training because then I didn’t lose any time. I was able to hit the road, instead of still trying to get the flat tire situation dealt with, right after training.
I was feeling pretty lucky. However, I did have a moment of panic when I first turned the car on. I sat in the car and emailed the fleet folks before actually leaving because the tire pressure monitor had the tire at 17 psi. I had to step out of the car and look at it again. It looked fine to me.
As it turns out, there’s some kind of process that you have to do after a tire is replaced in order to reset the tire pressure monitoring system. They told me everything was fine. The system just needed to be reset.
It felt weird driving all the way home with the tire pressure alert on and saying the pressure is at 17 psi. I’ve seen the alert as low as 25 psi but I’d never seen it show all the way down to 17 psi before.
When I took the Volt to Topeka again last week, the system had not yet been reset. This time, instead of showing one of the tires at 17 psi, it just said that the tire pressure monitoring system needed maintenance. Driving without the aid of the system was weird but not as weird as it saying one of the tires only had 17 psi.
I can’t really feel the nuances of the driving experience unlike my dad who can tell that there’s something wrong with a car by the way it drives. He can feel things. I don’t have that same skill. I can’t rely on sight either because all tires look flat to me even when they’re perfectly fine. I tend to rely on the tire pressure monitoring system a lot.
I was a little bit uncomfortable driving the car without it working. However, I reminded myself that Bebot didn’t have a tire pressure monitoring system. I drove it for years and turned out just fine. LOL.
I did send an email to our local fleet supervisor to inform him of the maintenance alert, though. The car can get me from point A to point B fine but it would definitely make me feel better to have the tire pressure monitoring system functional again at least before my next extended trip.
You may or may not have known this but I spent last Sunday at the ER because of pneumonia. This is my second brush with it. The first time was in December 2014. I was so glad when I managed to get through this last holiday season without pneumonia because I’d heard that after you get it you become predisposed to it. Now that I’ve had pneumonia a second time, I see what they mean.
I hadn’t been feeling well for a while but I didn’t realize how sick I really was. The problem with me is I’m such a workaholic that I tend to overestimate my health and underestimate how sick I am because I hate missing work. I’d been traveling a lot for work the last few weeks and so I thought I was just exhausted from all of the traveling but I did think it was really weird that I was running out of breath really quickly.
For instance, just getting on and off the plane was making me out of breath. And, when we were at Laclede in St. Louis and we had to walk across the street to their other building, I also felt out of breath. It seemed really strange to me that I was constantly running out of breath.
Because I’m a crazy person who doesn’t like missing work, I pretty much continued on like normal. We arrived back from St. Louis late on Wednesday night, and then I worked for about an hour before bed, and I got up early the next morning to be in Topeka by 8:30 AM the next day. I could have taken the meetings via video conference but (a) it’s better to attend in person and (b) the customer relations and key accounts group had a very important quarterly meeting (it was a celebration of Coleen’s retirement and Terry’s final one). I wanted to pop in for that even for just a few minutes.
Here’s a selfie of Coleen and me. Don’t mind the raccoon eyes. It was kind of an emotional meeting. I don’t think I was the only teary-eyed person there.
Anyway, I wanted to be back in Wichita by 5:30 PM to make the PowerGEN mixer but I didn’t end up leaving Topeka until after 3:30 PM. We still had to take care of the dogs and return the company car back to the office so Brian and I didn’t make the mixer until 6:30 PM or so. I’m so glad we went though because it was a great turnout.
I went to work on Friday but it was a blur, probably because I was so out of it. Fast forward to Saturday… After teaching my Zumba Fitness class on Saturday morning, Brian and I had lunch at Asian Bistro because I felt like pho would make me feel better. The broth usually helps to open up my chest and soothe the congestion.
I really didn’t feel well so I went to bed in the “sick room” immediately after we got home from lunch. Slept in the “sick room” instead of our bedroom because Brian had stripped the bed to wash the sheets.
BTW, the “sick room” is the guest bedroom next to our office which is the room that grandma stays in whenever she’s with us. Jenni also stays in this room on occasion. It’s the room with the most comfortable bed in the house. I’m calling it the “sick room” because it’s usually the room I end up in whenever I’m sick. The last time I had pneumonia, I stayed in the “sick room” for a few days. Brian put one of our cameras in the room and just kept a watchful eye over me.
But I digress… We had it on the calendar to clean the living room, dining room, and kitchen this weekend because our neighbors Jim and Karen would be staying with us on Monday night. Since I was sick, I was completely worthless and of no help to Brian. Brian did all the cleaning himself. He even did the laundry, which is my job. He did all of this while I slept in the “sick room.”
He did check on me a few times and determined that I wasn’t running a fever. After doing housework, he spent the rest of the evening playing video games downstairs (I can’t complain; he earned his video game time that weekend) until I got up to move to our bedroom and was finally ready for bed.
I pretty much spent the entire day on Sunday in bed while Brian did errands and mowed the lawn. I did get up briefly to eat lunch (Brian made us ham sandwiches) but then wen’t back to bed. Later in the afternoon Brian took a shower and was getting ready for bowling. I really wasn’t feeling well and so I just slept the entire time without showering even after my Zumba class on Saturday. That’s gross, I know. I smelled bad and was feeling gross so I decided to get up and shower also. I ended coughing violently while in the shower and vomitted my lunch (in addition to the ham sandwich, I had BBQ flavored potato chips, chocolate cake, and ice cream) so you can imagine how putrid and brown the shower floor was. It kind of looked like I pooped a diarrhea poop in the shower. But I was grateful it was just in the shower because I was able to wash all of that gross stuff down the drain. The violent puking shook me so much that my head hurt. I really didn’t want to go to the ER but I didn’t want to miss work this week so I finally caved and asked Brian to take me.
When we got to the ER, they found I wasn’t getting enough oxygen and gave me a breathing treatment which helped tremendously. They also checked my temperature and got 100.4 which was a surprise to me because Brian told me that I didn’t have a fever.
When the nurse left, Brian was like, “You should ask them to take your temperature again because you could be hot from just getting out of the shower.”
They got 100.7 the second time around. I had a fever after all. I guess no one is perfect. LOL. As wonderful as Brian is, he isn’t a doctor.
Anyway, I got the same ER doc this time that I had the last time when I had pneumonia but he didn’t remember me. I suppose enough time has passed and he does see a lot of people (or I’m simply not that memorable). The crappiest part about the whole ER visit was that they had to stick me seven times to draw blood and attach my IV.
The whole getting blood drawn bit is always so traumatic because my veins never want to cooperate. It doesn’t matter how many times I’ve been through it, I will never get used to its unpleasantness.
Brian figured that I would have some massive bruising as a result. He was right. These are what my arms looked like after five days. Even today the bruises are still there. I know that the bruises will eventually go away but it’s taking a while.
The crappiest part about getting pneumonia over the weekend is that we missed Rune’s birthday celebration on Saturday and Jay’s birthday celebration on Sunday. I didn’t get to teach my Sunday Zumba class (huge thanks to Charis for subbing) and we missed Tulip Time at Bartlett Arboretum and the season opening of Old Cowtown Museum. We obviously missed bowling because we were at the ER instead. And, I also missed spending time with my little sister. I hate being sick because I always end up missing out on so much stuff.
The ER doctor prescribed some good stuff. Besides the breathing treatment, they gave me some steroids through my IV. I also got some strong antibiotics. It sucked that I’ve been on medication all week (just finished my last one yesterday) but I think it really did help because I’m feeling tons better. I could tell I was feeling better because I actually managed to have a great time while I was away on business this past week.
Check back in a few days for a recap of my most recent work trip, which I consider to be my best work trip ever.
I finally got Nickira’s Christmas present to her after hanging on to it for a couple of months. Ironically, it was the first Christmas present we purchased and it was the last one we had left at home. Nickira asked for the Barbie shopping mall back in October. I agreed to get it for her and asked her mom to make sure no one else got it for her for Christmas. I think she pretty much forgot that she asked for it. LOL.
The package arrived back in November and we just hid it in the office. I wanted to give it to Nickira before Christmas but she ended up going to Texas and didn’t return until after the holidays. Instead we just hung on to it until she got back and I gave it to her on our first meeting of the year.
Nickira set it up in her room the same night she got it and texted me a picture of the completed mall really late. I think it was well after midnight. I didn’t see it until the morning. She said it’s right next to her dollhouse.
In other news, my boss just celebrated her 60th birthday. Brian and I were fortunate to be there for the surprise party. Carmen and Nick were there too, which is a good thing because besides Ginger’s kids we didn’t know anyone else there.
Speaking of kids, we’re seeing some progress with Molly and Saki. It’s slow but I think they’re starting to get along bit by bit. They still fight at least a couple of times a day but I’m optimistic that the fights will eventually become less frequent.
Saki is growing exponentially quick. She doubled in size in her first month. When we got her she was only 4.5 lbs, about half the size of Molly. When we took her to the vet for her pre-spaying assessment and treatments she was 7.5 lbs. I left for Topeka that Monday and when I returned a couple of days later she was 9.5 lbs. That was about two weeks ago. This morning Brian took her to the vet to get weighed and she’s now 10.5 lbs. She is officially way bigger than Molly who tops out at about 8 lbs on a good day.
We mailed out our “Happy New Year” cards a few weeks ago to make up for not sending out Christmas cards this year.
I love Mixbook because they have really cool templates that you can easily customize. I was able to design the card with just a few clicks. I rushed the text a little bit and later found I omitted a few things. Oh, well. That’s what I get for rushing. Overall I was really pleased with how the cards turned out, though.
That’s it. That pretty much catches us up, which is good because Brian and I are leaving town tomorrow and we will not have access to internet.
Come back next week to hear about our adventures on the first ever Zumba cruise!
So, I have 30 minutes before I have to get up and about and I need to catch the blog up on everything before I am a couple of months behind.
Missy’s class had the honor of being my very last Zumba class of the year. She was subbing for Sasha downtown on December 31. It was supposed to be a 30 minute class, but we turned it into an hour-long mini-Zumbathon with me, Todd, Holly, Abby teaching a few songs. Above is our “before class” pic. Below is our “sweaty mess” after class pic.
Brian dressed the part but didn’t shake it with us. He was just there for moral support but it worked out well because then we had someone to take our photos.
Later that evening we had dinner with Jenni and her friend Adam.
It was a quiet NYE as the NYE party that we were all supposed to attend got canceled due to weather. It was nice being able hang out at home and not having to drive home after too much “celebrating” although it didn’t matter much for me because I could not drink as I was on antibiotics.
Nothing against Jenni and her friend but that night made us realize that we prefer to someone else’s party on NYE so we can leave right at 11 pm and be home for our annual NYE tradition. This year was the first year that we missed ringing in the New Year in our own special way and it’s because we had people in our house until past midnight. I suppose we could have excused ourselves to follow through on our New Year tradition but that would have been both rude and weird.
Despite missing our traditional NYE thing, 2016 is off to a great start. I taught a Zumba class on January 1 to an awesome and enthusiastic group! Of course, I bribed them gifts and that might have been why some were more enthusiastic than usual. But, you have to incent people every now and then. For instance, my mom hasn’t come to one of my classes in over a year because “it’s so far from Derby” but with a little bit of coaxing and bribing I was eventually able to persuade her to attend.
Chiding aside, I am happiest about being able to teach class on New Year’s Day. I wanted to teach so badly last year but I had pneumonia over the holidays and couldn’t. The New Year’s Day class happened this year and everyone seemed to have a great time.
The high energy of the New Year’s Day class is now the standard for 2016 for me.
P.S. Huge thanks to Charis and Abby for leading some songs and bringing their positive energy. With their help, we were able to create a mini-Zumbathon. I had a blast!
I hope this isn’t the last time this year that mom and Jenni make it to one of my classes!
A couple of local dancing superstars, Gina and Abby, were in class which was a huge treat. Abby taught a song that was super fun to do. Everyone loved it! The only thing that could have made the day better was if Gina could have taught a song too. Maybe we can work on that for next year’s class!
Another huge accomplishment was our organized pantry.
It had gotten really out of control so Brian spent a good amount of time organizing everything. This is him trying to explain to me where everything goes.
Brian got chicken adobo as a reward. Most people think I can’t cook because I rarely ever do. I really can cook. I just prefer not to. LOL. It’s like Molly and barking. She can bark. She just doesn’t. I leave the cooking to the people who enjoy it.
The chicken adobo I made was really good, though. I’m thinking I really should make it more often. Maybe after we return from vacation.
Alright. I’m out of time. The blog is still way behind. I will try to make another cram post this evening. Stay tuned!