Monday, October 30, 2006

Scopes and Acid

You know how I said that Ben hasn't been well lately? Last week he had some blood work done and that didn't appear to tell us anything about his abdominal pain. Today he had an upper GI scope done (doc puts a lighted camera down your throat and esophagus to take pictures of your esophageal lining and stomach lining/acids). The results were not what we had hoped for. While the results do give us a diagnosis, we had hoped he was just acidy. Apparently, over the years all his acid has been eating away at his esophageal lining, and his doctor has preliminarily diagnosed Ben with Barrett's Esophagus.

Now, this is not a final diagnosis, but his doctor is a gastro-intestinal specialist, and I am inclined to trust his judgement. This diagnosis means a few things...

1) Ben will be on some sort of PPI medication (Nexium, for example) for the rest of his life.

2) He needs to lose some weight around his middle, those extra pounds are pushing stomach acids into his esophagus at night and when he lies down.

3) He needs to get scoped on a regular basis to make sure that his Barrett's does not turn into esophageal cancer.

4) Diet changes... no soda, fewer acidy foods such as tomatos, oranges, etc.

So today has been a rather big day. I'm worried for him, but he's in good shape now, and we intend to help keep him that way.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

No Antlers for the Wall

Well, hunting yesterday was uneventful. We ended up seeing three houses. Two of which we would consider, but neither of them really screamed "buy me... you must have me!" I'd be fine with either house, but Ben had reservations about both of them. After having lived in 15 different homes/dorms/apartments, I can make do with anywhere, as long as the kitchen has enough cabinets and the master bedroom must be large enough for a king size bed. That's all I need.

Oh yeah, and the St. Louis Cardinals are the World Series CHAMPS!! We rocked the Tigers. It was a good series. They definitely played hard, and made us work for it, but we won in the end! Last night I bought red yarn and white fun fur to knit a Cardinals scarf. Hopefully, I'll finish it sometime this week.... Yeah right....

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Mmmmm...crow tastes good...

OK, not really, but I'm a big enough person that I can admit when I've made a mistake. After a little more research, I found that my realtor did not just send us her listings. Apparently, she just has a program that sticks her name and contact info at the top of each listing that she puts together for a client. But the way it's set up, it does look like all the listings on the page are hers.

Tomorrow night is a Halloween party that my nephew and his wife are throwing. I still have some shopping to do. Since I've been sick this week (stayed home from work yesterday, left work early today), it's been difficult to get the energy to go and get what I need. I'll have to get that stuff tomorrow on my way home from work.

Oh yeah, and I met another astronaut today! Yay! Brian Duffy was awesome. Very nice guy. I'll post a pic once I send it to myself from work.

Monday, October 23, 2006

We've got the scent...

We have narrowed the home search down to what seems to be four houses in town. And yes, Jessi/Craig, Victoria made the final cut. Now, it's just a matter of getting a hold of our realtor and going to see those homes. If none of those work, we may have to look into another realtor, this one only sent us homes listed with her agency. I'd like to work with a realtor who will show homes that s/he may or may not list.

She only sent us like 10 places to choose from. I'm kind of disappointed. I guess I should e-mail her and let her know that none of the homes on this list really knocked our socks off. But, I'm trying to keep in mind that homes may be better in person than on paper.

Up until tonight, I thought that Ben just wasn't as into this hunting as I was, but I figured out that he has been sick for the last week, so it's probably hard for him to get as excited. It's not that I've been ignoring his discomfort, he's just not a complainer (like me...), so I just wasn't aware of how sick he was. Hopefully, he'll feel better before we go see homes this weekend.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

One Down, Three to Go

Game One of the World Series: St. Louis Cardinals.

What a great game.

Tonight will hopefully be another killer game. Got my Cards tee and fleece on. The bracelet is on. We'll see how they do!

Go Cards!!

Friday, October 20, 2006

World Series, Here We Come!!

Bernie Miklasz (sp?) wrote a beautiful front page piece for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch today. I know this because I have the day off and that meant that I actually had time to read the Friday morning paper. Yadier Molina is my hero of the day. He really pulled it together for this series. He's a great catcher, and it looks like he's becoming someone on whom our team and fans can rely on in tight situations.

Well, I have some errands to run before Ben and I go see friends tonight, so I must go. Have a great weekend, y'all!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Hugs Galore!

Today I got to visit my old school,LMS. I visited all the teachers I used to work with on a regular basis, and was lucky enough to see the teachers that I liked a lot whom I didn't work for.
And the big bonus, seeing two of my kids from last year who are now 7th graders (thank God, there's one that I seriously thought had a shot at being held back...). They were acquaintances last year, but appear to be really good friends now. I'll call one JB and the other JT. JT is the one that I worried about. He wasn't/isn't a bad kid; he just needed a positive relationship with an adult who cared enough to be patient with him to get him through the homework. JB is a GREAT kiddo. He's really intelligent, funny in a dry sense of humor kind of way, and an all around nice kid. Why he was ever assigned to me last year, I'll never know. Once I had him "in line," I still didn't send him back to classes because I could tell that he was having an affect on JT.

They both say that 7th grade is easier than sixth. This I can believe. Mostly because many kids on their team had difficulty with one teacher. The teacher is a nice person, not so great at showing a caring, patient attitude to students. Unfortunately, the school had rules against moving kids from team to team unless there were egregious problems between particular students. I believe that had the school moved JT and another young man to another team, they might have had more success earlier in the school year. The team that I wanted them moved to was a smaller team and could easily handle another two students. Oh well, they both seem to be doing well, and JT said he likes his teachers this year.

I bet the 7th grade teachers are ecstatic this year. They had a class from Hell last year. There were kids that I was ready to strangle, and I didn't work with them daily. They had other TA's crying. Seriously. The 6th grade class from last year is a great group of kids. They've all got good reputations from the schools that they came from the year before. The 7th grade teachers deserve a group like them after the group they had last year. They're like chocolate after a liver dinner.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

New Obsession

So, during the Cardinals game, I got a little bored... but they won!!!

Back to the story... my thought was "How do people just randomly find funny/great/cool vids on YouTube??" And then proceeded to to randomly find a funny/great/cool vid. And I happened upon a regular video blogger, William Sledd.

He now also has an "Ask the Gay Man" fashion and hair series. I think I watched every video of his tonight. I'm so obsessed. It's sick. It's wrong, but I'm loving his humor, his advice, his Fun Underwear Day. I'm so having Fun Underwear Day tomorrow. OK, on second thought, maybe not... can't tell you why, but I can't. Maybe next week....

So, if you're bored, or even just want a really good laugh, go watch William Sledd's video blogs. He's great. He's from Paducah, KY. How can you not be great if you're from Paducah. Everyone that I know from Paducah rocks. Just because I only know two people from Paducah doesn't mean a thing. They're both great. So it must be true.

Now I'm just babbling. It's late, I'm tired. Gotta go... nighty-night!!

New fun page to play

Here is a page to play at when bored at work or home...

South Park Character Page

This page allows you to make a South Park version of yourself. It's awesome.

This is the Jennie I designed with the April cruise in mind:

Two Out of Three...

OK, earlier this year, I got the full time teaching position I was looking for. With all the fabulous benefits of:
1) No Daily Lesson Planning
2) Being creative in many areas
3) Educational Interaction with middle school age students
4) Getting rid of said students in two hours (only a benefit if they are really difficult to work with)
Oh, and the best benefit...
5) Making more than your typical first year non-Masters-degree-holding-teacher

Now, Ben and I are taking on hunting. No, not deer or animal hunting, but house hunting. We sent an e-mail to my sister's realtor this weekend. BTW, Jessica and Craig bought a GORGEOUS new home last week... see it here.

After talking with Jessica and my parents, we are looking at one story, ranch style homes with at least partially finished basements. Two reasons for the one story stipulation; first, you are taxed on livable above ground space; second, you don't have to pay to heat/cool the second floor. With us only looking at one story homes, that means that the basement is a MUST. As is the "at least partially finished" part. What use is a completely unfinished basement? None to me... since I have absolutely no carpentry skills, it is much less likely that the basement would get finished in any timely manner.

So, I will keep you apprised of the housing situation. We're not in any huge hurry, but I'd really like to be done with buying /moving in before Thanksgiving or at least Christmas.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Employee of the Month

Yup, that's me. OK, not really. Maybe. Anyway, that's the movie we all saw Friday night. Totally hilarious. It was your typical romantic comedy, but Dane Cook and Andy Dick were really funny. I'd highly recommend seeing it.

The rest of my weekend was pretty good. Worked a half day on Saturday, and then went to my nephew's birthday party. He's 9 years old now (this is the little guy who was the ringer bearer at my wedding). I can't believe it. He's a funny little dude. At this party were a couple who are friends with Brad's parents. I'll call them Pete and Wi-Fan. Wi-Fan is from Vietnam. She's very nice, but very difficult for me to understand her. She has a very heavy accent. Just check with Jessica, she'll tell you that I can't understand anyone from an Asian country. Jessi is my translater when we go for manicures at a local shop. The person doing my nails will ask a question, and I'll look at them and smile like a complete retard because I have no idea that they have just spoken to me in English and that they expect an answer. Jessi will sigh and repeat what they've said and I'll tell them what I want.

So to make this story even more interesting, I find out that Wi-Fan also speaks French. She finds out that I am somewhat fluent, and she decides to try to speak with me that way. Yeah, like that's gonna work. I can barely understand you in my own language, let alone a second language?! You gotta be crazy lady!

I seriously believe that I have an auditory processing disorder. I can hear what people are saying, it just takes me a minute to figure out what it is that they've said. Anyone who has spent any amount of time with me may notice that I ask them to repeat seemingly simple sentences, only to have me understand what they said the first time half way through their second time saying it. It's not an attention issue. My focus can be completely on someone and the conversation that I am having with them, but I will still miss what they say sometimes. I have learned to read lips, though, and that helps.

Now on to the exciting stuff. The Rams are now 4 and 1!!!! More importantly, the Cardinals are going on the National Laegue Championship Series!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Woo hoo! Go Cards! So now begins my obsessive blogging out the Cardinals every day/night of a game. I apologize now if you get sick of reading about it. It'll all be over soon.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Earl and Xavier

I totally needed a night like tonight. First, we ate dinner at my mom and dad's with my two sisters so we could help Jessi move my dad's computer desk. That gave me a chance to give Jessi her Thank You gift for watching my house while we went to Botcon. (Botcon was on Attack of the Show on G4 tv today!!)

When Ben and I got home from dinner and moving, we watched ER. Awesome show. Then we watched My Name Is Earl. If you are not watching MNIS, you SHOULD BE. It's seriously the funniest show. Ever. Don't believe me? I dare you to watch one show and not belly laugh to the point of snorts. OK, so, I'm probably the only person who snorts while laughing on a fairly regular basis, but you know what I mean. Anyway...

Well, watching Earl put me in a goofy mood (I'm sure the Ambien probably had more to do with the goofiness that is about to ensue...). We're watching the news after Earl is over, and an ad for Governor Rod Blagojevich comes on. He's running for re-election in IL. He's not such a bad guy for a Democrat, but I have digressed. I realized during his ad that he looks like a Cabbage Patch that grew up. Pinch his nose just a little bit, and he's a grown-up Xavier Cabbage Patch kid. Check out his pic: