Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Wings over Houston

I've been so busy lately with planning and working I haven't had a lot of time to update my blog. I think Russel's projects have also been delayed a bit. I am definitely not complaining though. I am enjoying the planning and trying to make sure we get the absolute best price for what we are getting. We took a break to go see the Wings Over Houston air show and got to see the Blue Angels perform. Here are some awesome pics I was lucky to get.

Friday, September 28, 2012

My future

I have a very warm heart. I feel loved and at home in his arms.

On Saturday September 22, 2012 Russel asked me to marry him. I said yes and feel like I am living in a fairy tale.

I couldn't have asked for a better family to accept me unconditionally.

He did an outstanding job picking out a beautiful ring. It is much more than I could have hoped for.

I love you Russel, with all of my heart.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


I haven't updated in a while. Mostly because I am on my iPad and iPhone all of the time and I don't drag out the computer often. Blogger doesn't play well with apple products or it could be user error, hard to tell.

So, here is the arcade project update with hopefully lots of pics. Russel has done an absolutely outstanding job with this project and it has become something I am very proud of. I wish I could help more even if it's just sweeping up and putting away the tools. I can't wait until it's finished so I can REALLY show it off. :-)

Paint or Stain? Which shade of Red?

Precision counts.

Looks like progress

No chopped off fingers yet! Yay

Freshly cut wood.

Clamp and unclamp

The inside bracing complete

Fit together like a glove. And looks spectacular.

The keyboard and mouse drawer

The Monitor and bezel test

He's a genius and made the monitor able to be switched depending on the game.

Red wood dye

Don't worry it's only a flesh wound. Just kidding! Its just dye.

Stain on top of the dye to get the perfect shade

Looks great

Cabinet up to this point. :-)

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Arcade project

Russel is working on a project. I get the benefit of his hard work at the end of the project. IT'S AN ARCADE!!!!!!!!!! (insert 12 year old girl scream here) Long ago I thought about doing this myself, of course on a much smaller scale and ummmm pretty much no budget. I never had enough to order the buttons for the control panel. So, when he mentioned he wanted to plan something like that I was super dooooper excited. I can't wait to see the finished product and of course play it!

Here are some pics of the work in progress. More pictures as the project progresses and when it is complete!

who can draw this stuff on a legal pad? really? of course Russel can.

yes! I was ready to start shooting some Galaga bees.

It's a good thing he is so precise. I would have used double the wood.

He did a really good job.


Wow he is cute.

Wow wow he is really really cute. Oh, and that is a joystick in his hand. :-)

Rough week but it's (my) Friday

It was supposed to be my first week back from vacation. Turned out to be half a week back from vacation.

You know the best thing about vacation? NOT being at work. I'd like to thank the entire Schultz family for treating a poor girl to a great vacation. Thank you very much. It means a lot.

So here are some pics.

Sunset cruise
Texas State Aquarium. It's a dolphin not a shark.

The view from the beach house.
Flying kites on the beach was awesome.

Sand castles on the beach.
Sunset cruise and dolphin watching

Monday, July 9, 2012

Looking Back

In the past few weeks I have been looking back on my work life. I have had many conversations with family members and friends about how disappointed I am that things have worked out like they did. 

For those who care, I am a police dispatcher/911 Operator. I have been in the law enforcement field for 15 years. I still believe that my job is honorable and necessary. I still enjoy the core of my job, helping people. I am not being challenged anymore with my career. 

I think about what would make me happy. I have mentioned before working with animals 99.9% of the time would be ideal, but not realistic. Something where I didn't have to answer the phone would be even more ideal. Then I sit back and think about what I am qualified for and I realize I am stuck answering phones forever. You see, the people who answer phones are not the important or well paid ones. Those are the guys who get their calls screened and choose whether to answer the phone or let it go to voicemail. 

I have an Associates Degree in Criminal Justice. I have been a dispatcher 15 years. I have created policy and procedure. I created the first training manual for Communications Operators at my department. I have trained many people. I am a certified trainer through the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education (TCLEOSE) I have obtained my Basic, Intermediate and Advanced Telecommunicators License through TCLEOSE. I have been a manager/supervisor. I am trainable. 

This is what I don't have: a 4 year degree. Money for a 4 year degree. Something marketable so I don't have to answer phones for the rest of my life. 

After 15 years of employment I still live on a little over $25,000. Do you cringe when you read that number? I do. I'm not afraid to say it either. I have worked really hard to be a great dispatcher. Why am I not being rewarded for my hard work? I always thought that you get rewarded for working your hardest, being loyal, doing a good job, and having a good work ethic. I was wrong. You don't get rewarded for that stuff. You get more work.

Can I afford to be picky about what I want? I think I can. While I am still employed and still working on my retirement I think I can be. I need something that pays more obviously. I need something that has medical benefits, long term/short term disability, and a good retirement or 401k.  I have figured that right now, the job I want doesn't involve working in a call center. It doesn't involve answering phones. It doesn't involve customer service. I understand you can't expect to start at the top of anything, but I have experience. I have been there when it's an emergency. I have saved lives. I have seen lives lost. How many can say they have that experience in their cubicle or office with the mahogany desk? 

So, if you know where I might find a mythical job like this let me know. If not, I will be searching for the right one to come along. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

No Lectures

I have been a very non-compliant patient for the past 3 years. 

I was diagnosed with Diabetes in 2007 and I was pretty tightly controlled within a year of my diagnosis . In fact, I remember crying in my doctor's office after she told me for the first time my A1C was perfect and all of my hard work was worth it. I felt so accomplished after I left the doctor's office.

Many life changing events happened after that. I was given a promotion at work, stress levels went through the roof, I needed a break from dispatching so I left for almost a year. Coming back in, I took a huge cut in pay. I could no longer afford my medications, testing strips, and doctor's visits. That's not the only reason I became non-compliant. I was 100% tired of testing, eating what I was supposed to, being chained down by a schedule, taking pills, injections and having to be bothered. So, I stopped. I figured it would only be for a year but then it turned into 3 years. 

I am sure the health-nuts in the world are just gasping for breath and looking down your nose at me ready to give me a lecture. Well, save your breath. I don't care what you think and I am definitely not soliciting your opinion. I am sharing this for my family and friends so they have an idea what is going on my life. Just for clarification, I am not soliciting opinions of my family and friends either. I am a 36 year old woman. I do NOT need a lecture. I repeat, I do NOT need a lecture. I welcome your support always but if you do not know the difference between a lecture and support just don't say anything. 

When I went back to the doctor for a non-related issue I was subjected to a blood test to see if I was anemic. I knew what this would mean. I even thought about refusing the test. I went through with it and I was refered back to my endocrinologist to get things "under control" I absolutely love my general practitioner though. Dr. Paul Kyte is the best ever. I absolutely trust and respect all of his decisions with my health. So, in the mean time he made sure I had a couple of prescriptions to start getting things under control. OK fine but I don't have to like it. Oh and so that you don't cheat and just say you are going to make an appointment they made me call them back and give them my appointment date. 

So, I call the damn endocrinologist and since this is probably the biggest practice in the Austin area you have to see the Physician's Assistant first and once in your lifetime you MAY get to see the real doctor. The place is like a cattle hearding facility and I hate going there. It feels like going to the principals office after you get caught cheating on a test. It runs a very close second only to the Gynocologist office which I also had to do within the next few weeks. 

I was completely stressed out and angry that I was found out and sent back. I had to figure out what I was going to say, how I was going to afford my medications, ugh thinking about going back to Wal-Mart pharmacy for prescriptions :-( Everything just really started pissing me off. I wanted to be free, I didn't want the hassle and I still don't. I completely don't. There was only one reason I could think of that made me keep those appointments. One day down the road when my life is the best it can possibly be will probably be the day my kidneys fail. Damnit. 

So, off to the doctor I go. I armed myself with the thought that I will not be lectured and to focus on the fact that I am back and trying to do the right thing against every feeling in my body. I sat in the waiting room for an hour and this was the satellite practice in Round Rock. I seriously considered just walking out but then I figured they would send a bill for the missed visit. I finally sat down with the PA. I am sure my body language and my attitude showed how much I wanted to be there but she was a trooper and stayed positive for me. She was kind enough to remind me that I was tightly controlled before and there was no reason I couldn't accomplish the same thing. She asked why I took a sabbatical and when I told her it was for financial reasons she didn't bat an eye. I cringed waiting for the lecture to come next but it didn't. She asked me if I was still having financial difficulties I told her yes followed by the history of my sad salary. She did everything she could to help me out. Another meter, more sample test strips, sample medications and a free bag! It's really sad when you leave the doctor's office with a bag full of crap. 

I am really not looking forward to going back for my followup visit but I will. I am trying to get back into the groove of things again. I hate this groove. I am back on a pill and injection schedule. I carry around the stupid little weekly pill holder thingie and my meter. It weighs my purse down and makes me pissy just thinking about it. I have to pre-plan if I am not going to be home to make sure I have enough medication, testing strips, lancets, glucose and pen needles to last until I can restock. 

I did decide that saving $4.00 a month on prescriptions is completely not worth my time if I have to endure waiting in line at the Wal-Mart pharmacy and then being so completely surprised when they don't have my complete amount of medication available and I have to go back. I need to save money but I need all of the sanity I can get right now. 

When you're diabetic I am told that it is important to visit other doctors as well. Semi-annual dental cleanings and yearly x-rays, Annual eye appointments with dialations, and of course, gynecological exams to make sure you're as uncomfortable as possible puts the cherry on top of my sundae. I can't wait to spend more money on that stuff. 

I must vent about testing. It hurts. I don't care how many damn people with diabetes tell me it's not that bad, It is that bad to me. It hurts. I hate it. I hate that stupid little lancet gun thingie so much I finally quit using it. It either send that lancet so far into my finger it feels like it's digging for a bone marrow sample or it doesn't even touch the skin. I have tried all of the settings and it does not work for me. I am defective like that. So, instead I just use the lancet itself and poke my own finger that way I know when it's going to hurt and how deep it's going to go. I am in control. Yeah, it still hurts damnit. And testing strips? WHAT A SCAM! You can not tell me these little thingies cost that much to mass produce. $55.00 for 50 of them. If you test more than once a're really screwed. My prescription plan does not cover test strips. It is completely ridiculous. This is why thousands of people have to chose to eat or pay for medications, especially those without insurance. 

"As tiring and monotonic  it gets to educate  people of the different types of diabetes, how eating too much sugar will not give them diabetes, how not every Fat person in America is diabetic and not any diabetic is a fat slob." - The Poor Diabetic blog.

I guess I should stop here but don't be surprised if you hear more on this soapbox later. It's something I am just gonna have to do no matter what I really want. The day that I am truly happy and content with life I want my damn kidneys and liver to be working.


Monday, May 7, 2012

Kennedy Books

The last two books I read were pretty good. Very different ends of the spectrum but I enjoyed them both.

The first was about the White House Intern who had an affair with John F. Kennedy. I found her story similar to Monica Lewinsky in that both women were caught in the middle of presidential power and the charisma of the men at the head of the free world.

The second was about The Secret Service Agent assigned to Mrs. Kennedy. You may remember him from the Zapruder film. He climbed on the back of the presidential limousine after President Kennedy was shot. I really enjoyed the transformation Mr. Hill made from the beginning of his assignment to the end. He speaks very highly of Mrs. Kennedy and there are no secrets he revealed about her which was refreshing. Today there seems to be extreme focus on those who wish to give a juicy tidbit  away for everyone to read.