Saturday, January 30, 2010

Flushed Away...

I now remember why I didn't become a plumber...  What a sucky job!  Jeanine did two back-to-back loads of laundry and the water started bubbling up into the utility/laundry sink. :(  This happened while I was at class.  I didn't get home until 12:30pm and have been working on it until an hour ago or so.  Russ came over and helped, but we didn't get too far.  I took a tape measure and measured out about 75 - 80 feet from the house, and that's where the house trailer is.  The snake was about 100 feet, so we should be right around there.  We are hoping that the blockage is where the trailer sewer line is.  I'm assuming it is using the same sewer tap, since there wasn't a separate charge when I turned the services on.  We will try in the morning with the daylight to see if we can get the blockage.  The strange thing is, there is a clean-out in the laundry room that goes out towards 6th street (East) and a clean-out in a utility room that goes out towards the alley (West).  The laundry room clean-out is much lower, and I'm assuming it meets the other one somewhere out in the backyard via a loop of some kind.  Strangest thing I've ever seen...

If hitting it from the trailer doesn't work, Russ said he might be able to put an extension on that 100' cable and we can try it from inside again.  If THAT doesn't work, I'm calling the plumber and hoping he doesn't tell me to dig up the line.  Once in a lifetime is one too many times to do that!!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Mixing Snow, Ice & Bicycles

It started snowing around 12:15pm today, and it's still snowing here in Lamar.  Like the dummy that I am, I decided to ride my bicycle back to work even though there was snow on the ground.  I'm not sure how many inches we are at now, but it's enough to make navigating my bicycle a real chore.  I almost biffed it twice because of the ice underneath the snow, but I managed not to hit the ground. ;-)  This commuter bike isn't as sure-footed as my old mountain bike was, but it's a million times better then my nice road bike.  Those 1/2 inch tires would have probably killed me!  I might actually drive my Durango to work tomorrow if it doesn't stop snowing soon. :-O

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Another Long Day

Once again, I didn't get home until almost 7:00pm. :(  Did I mention I'm ready for a vacation?

I finally got the WelchAllyn stuff working, but it's a band-aid solution.  I need to work on the VPN some more, and tweak a few more things.  We are still ramping up for the Las Animas Clinic opening.  I need to go down again Friday and work with the phone guys.

On the plus side, I enjoyed riding my bicycle in the dark with my super-cool headlight and tail light.  That is the brightest bicycle headlight I've ever owned.  People can definitely see me coming!

That's all the news for now, pretty boring I know... but that's what you get for free. :)

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Roman Missal - 3rd Edition - Coming To A Parish Near You!

As most of you have probably heard, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has been working on rewording the English translation of the Roman Missal to more accurately reflect the approved Latin text.  I have been downloading the various iterations of Ordo Missae White Books that have been issued, and have the latest greatest copies.  I was on the USCCB's website for an unrelated matter and stumbled across this handy page that highlighted some of the verbal changes.  This will help you psych yourself up for the changes:

Tomorrow Is Coming Too Soon

Tomorrow (Wednesday, January 27th) is going to be a very crazy/busy/hectic/trying day at work.  When my coworker quit in November, he left a huge mess (make that SEVERAL huge MESSES) at work.  I am currently in the middle of one of those messes with the WelchAllyn patient monitoring system.  This is why I have been running so much cable at PMC breathing in all the nasty particles above the false ceiling.  Tomorrow WelchAllyn is coming down to install the system.  I just found out that they want a VPN connection to get into the Acuity workstations they are installing.  My realistic deadline is having it in place and working by tomorrow morning.  I can already tell that's not going to happen.  As a fall-back plan, I have an old-school US Robotics 56k external modem that I can connect to their UNIX box and let them dial in.  It's not ideal, but it should get the job done.  I think I'm ready to find a low-stress burger-flipping job somewhere...

Monday, January 25, 2010

Awesome Weekend!

I had so much fun on the weekend that I didn't have time to post anything here.  I haven't been on Facebook for so long that I'm thinking about closing out my account... but enough about that and back to the weekend!

It all started out with my boss yelling at me for working too much this week.  I worked at the Las Animas Clinic so late Thursday, that I didn't get to bed until after midnight.  He told me he didn't want me working that late unless the building was on fire, so for 'punishment', he made me go home early on Friday (which Jeanine was delighted about).  Jeanine and I had a lot of fun hanging out together.  We went to Mission Villanueva for dinner, then vegged out at home watching the first two X-Men DVDs.  We went to bed early (at least it was early for me), and slept in Saturday.

I had to go teach a 3 hour class at the college, but I decided to let the students out 45 minutes early so Jeanine and I could go to Denver.  My sister was going to go with us, but she wasn't feeling well and ended up missing out on a good time!  We stopped at John Erger's Church Supply store and picked up some candles for St. Mary's in Las Animas.  Next we headed over to the same bike store that I bought my last bicycle from.  That last bike was designed for nicely kept roads, but those kinds of roads are a rarity in Lamar, CO.  So I decided to get a commuter bike to help offset the crappy roads.  I got another Giant brand bike, and spent a lot less on it then I thought I would.  We spent quite a bit of time looking the different styles over before I made my choice. I bought a light kit, spare inner-tube and some tubes and a tire for my other bike.  After all that I called my grandma to see if she was feeling up to a visit.  She was getting over a cold and not feeling too well.  So I decided not to tell her that we were in town, but told her we would try to visit in a couple weeks.  We didn't eat breakfast and were getting pretty hungry so I let Jeanine pick the restaurant.  She wanted to go to Gunther Toodys and we found one not too far away in Arvada.  The food was good, and the shakes were HUGE!  We decided to head back home after that.  Jeanine watched "Bolt" on my iPod Touch on the way back.  The movie sounded cool through all the car speakers.

Sunday we celebrated my dad's birthday.  His birthday is on the 25th (Monday), but due to scheduling conflicts we always celebrate birthdays on the weekend before or after (depending on which one is closest to the actual day) so more of the family can get together at the same time.  I was surprised that my brother and sister-in-law didn't show up, especially since he had the day off.  Regardless, we had a great time!  We ate some very chocolaty birthday cake and some Chinese food with lots of good snacks.  We played games and the entire family went for a bike ride (Jeanine and I brought our bicycles with us).   Most of us were able to ride all the way into town and back (about 6 miles round trip).  Then later on, Jonnie and I rode back into town and drove around for a little bit before coming back.  After all that we went out to see Jeanine's folks.  We visited for a while until Jeanine started getting tired.  She has a habit of waking up on Colorado time, but going to bed on Kansas time...  We really need to work on that... ;-)

Jeanine didn't have to go in early on Monday, so she was able to spend another night!  Lately when she comes down for the weekend she leaves Sunday afternoon to get back to Garden City.  But this time we slept in until 6:30am Monday morning!  I can't wait until she is home for good!

All in all we had a very good weekend!  I think I could get used to those! :-D

Wonderful Weekends and Delightful Dr.'s Appointments

This weekend was so great, I really love spending time with our family and we did a lot of it this weekend! Jason's boss (hooray for Randy!!) sent him home early on Friday so he came home shortly after I got there around 3:30PM. We had an early bird supper at Mission (yummy!) and then watched the first two X-Men movies! Saturday Jason  had his class in the morning and I did laundry and not much else; and then we went to Denver and he got a new bike! We had dinner at Gunther Toody's, enjoying big burgers, fries, and milk shakes! But the best part is just being together and enjoying each other's company...I have so much fun with him!!! :-D On Sunday we went over to mom and dad Spano's for the dad's birthday and had yummy cake and ice cream and went on a long bike ride. I'm paying for the bike ride today!!! After that we went to mom and dad Schmidt/Dabney's and hung out chatting with my folks for a couple of hours. Jason got some ideas on changing the sprinkler system when we start working on the yard.

Today was my second OB appointment. I did have to wait for an hour to only see the doc for 10 minutes (if that), but I had a book with me so I was mostly content! I have gained about 6#s, which I guess isn't bad for the whole first trimester, because the doctor didn't say anything. He measured me and said everything looked good. He also listened to the baby's heartrate which was 157bpm. It's such an amazing sound!!! He then taught me how he can tell the difference between mine and the baby's, I only heard one heart beat so he must be better at it than I am! I asked him about lifting because of my job, and he doesn't want me lifting any more than 25#s so it's a good thing that our new PTA that is starting next week will be trained in inpatients. Then he gave me info about our next appointment and how they will offer the triple marker test. Apparently this is just a blood test but there can be false positives/negatives and we already know that we don't want to do any tests that could potentially damage the baby. Also there will be the standard 2nd ultrasound, but I think we'll pass on that one too. Since we aren't finding out the sex of hte baby, there really seems to be no need for this one. The morning sickness has abataed greatly and my energy seems to be rising somewhat so the 2nd trimester seems to be starting off wonderfully!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Ready To Rome

I had a very hectic, stressful day at work today.  I worked all day on a project that should have taken 3 hours tops.  I am so behind in my work that I just want to start over.  Maybe blow up the server room, and be forced to buy new equipment, hook the network up the way I want to, etc.  But... that really isn't an option... so... I just need to suck it up and work with what I have. :(

All this brings me to the title of this post... I'm ready to Rome... I am so ready to go back to Rome for another two weeks... Maybe I could find a job over there... except my mom would probably kill me...  Hopefully Jeanine and I (and the little kumquat) can do that again!

Professional Frustrations

It's frustrating that an entire field can be downplayed by one type of person in that field not doing their job appropriately. Physical Therapy has been around since then end of the first World War (if memory serves correctly) and has really come a long way. From being a 6 week course to being a doctorate (if you're a Physical Therapist) or an Associates of Applied Science degree (if you're a Physical Therapist Assistant). The field has gone from being semi-holistic as far as the medical community is concerned to being a primary reason for a person getting into a skilled nursing facility. And most recently the field has gone from requiring a prescription and referral from a doctor, to no prescription required and a patient can walk in off of the street and ask for therapy. This is the reason that our therapists are now required to take classes in differential diagnosis, so that they can tell if the person's problem is nerve or musculoskeletal related and therapy will help, or if it is a problem that arises from a much more serious problem. However, there are some "old school" therapists that seem to be dismantling this. Afraid to stand up for the rights they have in the field. Just because a doctor orders therapy does not mean a person is appropriate nor does it mean that we HAVE to work with that patient. And, most doctors will respect what therapy has to say. Why do these clinicians want to downplay our role and moreover downplay their own knowledge?! Not to mention that treating a patient who does not have the ability to progress (and hasn't shown progress) merely because a doctor orders it is bordering on fraud! OK, not even bordering, it is.

Sigh, rant over. It's hard to be low man on the professional totem pole and get your point across.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Switching Hosting Companies

I currently have my domain hosted through a company called Network Solutions.  I have been with this company for around 4 years, but I'm having issues with my e-mail and posting to my blog from my phone.  If that last feature worked, this blog would be updated more often...

I'm currently looking at a company called bluehost that gets rave reviews from the WordPress (that's the company I use for this blog) community.  In fact, as I type this, I am chatting with a tech support guy about that very feature.  Sounds like it works well with them.

The biggest downside with switching hosting companies, is that I have a couple forms setup at work that feed through a CGI script on my personal website.  Vince never got any of our servers setup with the services to host web forms, so I created them on my server.  I either need to break down and setup a server at work to take care of this, or find a way to seamlessly migrate the forms to bluehost...

Decisions, decisions... At least I have until early July to decide what I'm going to do. That's when my contract is up for renewal at NetworkSolutions.

Hobbits, Rings & Spiders... Oh my!

One of the (very few) disadvantages of not having TV, is not hearing the latest-breaking news that's happening all over the world.  For instance, I had no idea that there was a deadly earthquake in Haiti until yesterday.  While enjoying a relaxing Sunday with my family playing games and eating yummy home-made Chinese food, the topic of the Lord Of The Rings and The Hobbit came up.  I told my mom that I was certain there was an issue with the Tolkien Estate not wanting to let Peter Jackson film the Hobbit because of monetary issues.  I decided to look online and found a site:, that has lots of information regarding the movies that are out and The Hobbit movie that is yet to be made.  There was some talk (apparently) of Toby Maguire (Spiderman) playing in the movie, but that seems to be untrue at the moment.

So, although it doesn't happen very often... I guess I was... wro....   I was wron....., I was.... slightly less than correct. :)

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Jeanine will be coming home tomorrow (Friday the 15th) and I'm super excited!  I've really been missing her while she is in Garden City, KS working.  Now that my co-worker is taking call, I'll be able to start visiting her during the week.  Here lately it has been hard being apart for most of the week.

In addition to Jeanine coming home, tomorrow is "Banana Split Day" at Prowers Medical Center!  I usually eat 5 banana splits or so.  I'm taking a $10.00 bill, and skipping breakfast and lunch!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


I called my grandma today during the lunch hour.  She is feeling OK, but the medicine they have her on is making her sick.  They are cutting the dosage in half to hopefully help with that.  She wants everyone to keep praying for her.  I will try to go up and see her not this weekend, but next.  Now that I'm not on call 24x7 I can get up there once in a while.


I'm sitting at Lamar Community College proctoring a final.  One of my students broke his hand at the end of the semester and couldn't write to finish the final.  His hand is now healed enough to take the test, so here I am... nice guy that I am.  I had a rough day at work today.  I was stuck working until 11:30pm or so, and then got called in early(6:30am) to work this morning.  It has been a hectic day all day.  I'm also doing some side work for Dr. Ray.  Right now I'm chatting with my beautiful wife on instant messaging.  I can't wait until she doesn't have to be so far away!!!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

You're Still Eating?!

Well, that's what I keep telling myself this week. :-o I have been super hungry every night this week. Not so much during the day, but in the evenings for sure! I eat something, and then I wait a little while...then I'm hungry and eat again! I haven't been eating that well, so I'm thinking if I add some protein I will feel much better. Thank goodness peanut butter=protein! :-D I'm thinking the kumquat might be growing a lot this week so I'm getting extra hungry. That's who I'm blaming it on anyway! ;-)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Only Tuesday?

Isn't it awful how when you're excited for something time goes SO slowly? Well, that's how my weeks are here in Garden City. Especially now that we've decided that since I've been so tired that I shouldn't go home on Wednesday nights. 3AM just comes way too early.

I got a message from a friend of mine from PTA school, Ann, she's living in Germany now. She got pregnant during our last internships and now has a 14-15 month old. She loves to talk to me about being pregnant. It sure is fun to think about all the changes! I find myself getting caught up in the roughness of this first trimester, and forget the miracle that has happened. There is a new person growing inside of me, and just thinking of that miracle and how God created a soul for this tiny little kumquat amazing. And humbling. I am so blessed to be a pregnant mom, and incredibly blessed as well to have a husband who is so caring and wonderful and really bends over backwards to make me feel better in my pregnancy. :-D <3

Monday, January 4, 2010

Who Knew a Toothbrush Could Make One so Sick...and Other Random Thoughts of the Day

For about two weeks now, everytime I brush my teeth I'm reduced to dry heaves. It lasts anywhere from 30 seconds to 5 minutes. It's not fun at all! :( I thought I had finally beat the problem last week when I bought some orange flavored toothpaste (I know, orange flavored hardly feels like real toothpaste at all! :-O)...but this morning it came back in full force. Here's to hoping that the second trimester brings with it a calmed tummy!

We have been suffering at work with low census, this results in lost time at work. Sometimes as much as half of our day. Today was no different as we only had 2 patients. There should have been a bright spot with an interview for a new PT, but she called to say that she'd accepted a position at another facility. :( Who waits until the day of the interview to cancel?! We don't want her anyway! The low census leaves you with a feeling of not accomplishing anything (along with a short paycheck!) and breeds resentment, for me anyway. The resentment is towards coworkers who have the same (or less) patients and are not clocking out for low census. It's frustrating. As I decided to vent to my boss, our conversation veered some to talk of my pregnancy. She's very excited for us because it's great to see a family that wants to have the baby and aren't just dealing with consequences. :-D That is somewhat sad that it is her normal exposure to families having kids...Jason and I are incredibly excited for our kumquat to get here! My boss is a great person with a big heart, our conversations usually veer somewhat to the religious as well. She's halfway across the Tiber but doesn't know it yet! ;-) She was raised Baptist, but working in a Catholic hospital, just feet away from Perpetual Adoration is working on her heart. I see a conversion in her future!

Being away from home for a week at a time is a struggle too. I miss Jason more everyday! :(

House Sale?

Could it be true?? I may be selling my Las Animas property very soon! I won't be making any money on the deal, but at least I'll be able to get rid of $300 - $400 monthly payment. If it goes through I'll be able to start putting that amount into savings. When I paid my car off, I continued making the payment, but to my savings account. I had money saved up in no time for a down payment on a new vehicle. I still need to talk the details over with Jeanine tonight... Stay tuned! :-D

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Good Weekend - Sad Ending

Jeanine and I had a really good day today.  We said our morning prayers, got to pray our Rosary in front of the Blessed Sacrament and go to Mass.  Then we spent a good part of the day at my parents' house snacking on egg rolls and all kinds of candy.  My sister even broke out her nice tea set and made some good Darjeeling tea.  I felt just like Mrs. Nesbit. LOL!  ;-)  We played Phase10 (one of Jeanine's favorite card games)... but I can't seem to recall who won... hhmmmmhhh.... maybe someone can refresh my memory. :)

After all the fun of tea drinking, snack munching, game playing and visiting; we had to head back to Lamar. :(  Jeanine has been getting tired early, and she still had to drive to Garden City, Kansas so she could be at work at 6:45am.  Fortunately it wont be that long (in the grand scheme of things) until the day when she can stay in Lamar and not have to leave.  Come on July!!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Nearing the End...

...of the first trimester that is! ;-) And I'm thankful! Of course I love that I'm pregnant, and really had hoped to enjoy every moment of my pregnancy(ies). That, however, seems to be a dream. I've struggled with morning (AKA "ALL DAY") sickness since conception. At about 6 weeks it flared up incredibly and has been worse since. I'm lucky in that I'm able to keep things down, no real vomiting, but continuous nausea is not super exciting. I've also really wanted to avoid being "the tired pregnant girl" but boy have I been tired! I could nap daily and still go to bed at 8:30pm or 9:00pm. It's crazy!!! I'm hopeful that my second trimester (in just 2 weeks) brings some relief from those two difficult symptoms.

I know that I might not struggle in this way in subsequent pregnancies, but I also know that even if I do, I'd do it all over again! :)

The Princess and the Frog

Jeanine and I volunteered at PMC (Prowers Medical Center) for the "Breakfast With Santa" function that the H.E.A.R.T. Committee put on.  As a result of all our hard work, the H.E.A.R.T. Committee rewarded us with two tickets to the local movie theater.  We have decided to go tonight and watch The Princess and the Frog.

The previews looked good, and I'm excited to see it!  In just a few short hours we will head over to watch it.  Assuming Jeanine wakes up from her nap... ;-)

The 13th Day

Jeanine and I just finished watching "The 13th Day". I must admit that I liked the 1952 version "The Miracle of Our Lady of Fatima" a lot more. This newer version left out a lot of detail and was (in my humble opinion) cheesier than a 200 pound block of Mozzarella.  Also, the young Lucia's voice drove me nuts and every time she spoke I wanted to puncture my eardrums with a dull Q-Tip.

I probably shouldn't be so harsh.  I do applaud the movie makers at trying to get this very important and relevant message out to a larger audience.  Unfortunately, this must have been done on a very small budget.  The graphic effects of the 2009 version aren't much better than the 1952 version.

Friday, January 1, 2010


Jeanine and I are SO excited about our little kumquat!  Our baby is due sometime around July 24, 2010!!  On December 28th we went to St. Catherine's Hospital in Garden City, Kansas where Jeanine had an ultrasound done.  We were able to see the little baby (about the size of a kumquat) moving around and even waving to us!!  We were able to hear the heartbeat too!  It was so amazing!  I took some video with my phone, but when I shut it off and put it in my pocket, that's when the baby started waving. By the time I got the recorder started again, the little Kumquat was back to it's lethargic state and wouldn't move for anything!  :(  Anyway, here is the video I uploaded to YouTube: