Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Not so Wordless Wednesday

I'm going to take a little break until the beginning of the year.  I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas, and hope to see you all at the beginning of the new year.

Monday, December 20, 2021

Job update

 Wednesday will mark 2 weeks since starting my new job and I thought I should update you on how it's going.

First, I thought I would share a few pictures.  This whole building is 2 separate practices.  The top level is a family medicine practice, and I work in the lower level which is a Geriatric medicine practice.

There are 2 sections to this; one part is a home-based medicine, which had quite a few doctors, nurse practitioners and physician assistants who go to people's homes to see them.  The other half of the practice (which is the group I work with) is another group of doctors, nurse practitioners and physician assistants who go to nursing homes and assisted living facilities to see residents there. There are some patients seen in the office, but only on Thursday and Friday.  

Here's what it looks like in our area.  There are windows all around, and I've been amazed at all the birds that are around.  I've seen lots of blue jays and cardinals, and even several hawks.  They tell me there are frequently deer as well.  It's nice to have that type of view!

This is the area that the Geriatric medicine nurses work in and the home-based nurses are on the other side of the room. They are not separated so there's lot of talking between everyone here. There's laughter and fun, and people who help each other out.

It is busy. The phone rings a lot, and we also deal with lots of computer messages from insurance, pharmacies, staff at different buildings...  so there won't be a problem with being bored.

This is my own little cubby, which I'm just starting to personalize a bit.  I haven't spent much time here as I've been orientating with other nurses.  The people here have been wonderful, and this place takes orientation very seriously, and doesn't want to just push people into a position.  The biggest part of my orientation is doing Epic training.  Epic is a computer system that I will use to chart on, to document every phone call, to schedule appointments, to order meds...  It's very intense and I have 6 scheduled days at a training facility just to learn the basics.  I was warned by the office managers that it would be overwhelming and to "give yourself grace".  It is overwhelming, but I'm learning!  I've had 2 days of this training so far, will have another one this week, and then 3 days the next week.
I've really enjoyed coming back to the office and being able to put some of those things into practice.
One thing I don't think I shared is that I was told that after about 3 months, when I'm feeling comfortable with the job, they will let me work 2 days there and 2 days from home.  They've already got me set up with a computer to take home and a head set for phone calls. They also said that if the roads are bad or I don't feel 100 %, I can let them know and work from home.  That's a huge blessing!
I've also been so relieved to not be getting constant phone calls and not being called into work.   I have been back to my old job for one day to help the girl who is doing some of my old tasks.  She is overwhelmed and was thankful for some help.  I was once again reminded of why I left, although it was good to see some of the workers and residents again.
Thanks for the prayers as I adjust, and the messages checking on me!

Sunday, December 19, 2021

Weekend fun!

 We had a busy, but fun weekend!
We started on Friday night by having Alaina and Ruby over.

The girls talked Bob into hooking up our old Wii game system.  We don't use it often, so it takes a bit to remember how to hook it up. Here Alaina and Bob were having fun racing on Mario Cart.

On Saturday morning, we had lots to do, but took time to make a craft.  This was one that looked so easy to do, and the pictures of the finished product looked so nice!
All you needed were 2 different sized styrofoam tree forms, and some wire.  You wrap the wire around the form and then pull it out. You are left with a wire Christmas tree - or so they said!

This is how ours looked! I think maybe I needed thicker wire.  Oh well, can't always work out, right?  And it gave us some laughs.

Saturday afternoon, we had Cassie's 1st Birthday party!

Here is a display Heather set up with Cassie's pictures from birth to one year.

Heather and Andrew had fun things set around for activities.  One was this selfie area, where Bob and Alaina were having fun!

Soon it was time to open presents. Here's Heather helping Cassie.

Then it was time for some cake.

You can see she enjoyed this!

After this, it was into the sink with her for a cleanup and soon after we headed home.

Happy Birthday sweet Cassie!

Thursday, December 16, 2021

Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Cooking Thursday

 I'm sure you've had the classic lemon bars.  They are always good! Here's a recipe I tried recently, that has a shortbread crust and a thick, creamy lemon filling.  It's a good one!

Lemon Bars

Shortbread Crust: 
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted 
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups + 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour

Lemon Filling
2 cups granulated sugar
6 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
6 large eggs
1 cup lemon juice (about 4 lemons)
confectioners’ sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Make the crust: Mix the melted butter, sugar, vanilla extract, and salt together in a medium bowl. Add the flour and stir to completely combine. The dough will be thick. Press firmly into greased 9x13  pan, making sure the layer of crust is nice and even. Bake for 20-22 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned. Remove from the oven. Using a fork, poke holes all over the top of the warm crust (not all the way through the crust). Set aside.
Make the filling: Sift the sugar and flour together in a large bowl. Whisk in the eggs, then the lemon juice until completely combined.
Pour filling over warm crust. Bake the bars for 22-26 minutes or until the center is relatively set and no longer jiggles. (Give the pan a light tap with an oven mitt to test.) Remove bars from the oven and cool completely at room temperature.
Dust with confectioners’ sugar and cut into squares before serving.

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Monday, December 13, 2021

Special Decorations

 Here's a few decorations that have special meaning to us.

This kissing ball hangs over our table.  It was given to me by one of my residents several years ago.

Our stockings!  I made these name tags last year.  I like the rustic, natural look and love the people these represent!

An old fashioned Santa that Bob carved quite a few years ago.

Laura made this Nativity set from clay over 20 years ago. Some pieces are a little worse for wear, but most are doing ok.

She was only 16 when she did this and I love all the detail in it.  Do you see the little chickens?

And check out those cute sheep!

This little candy dish was given to me by the husband of a resident.  This lady loved to sit with me at the nurses station and greet visitors as they came in.  I love to see this and remember her.

This one makes me laugh every year.  The first time I met Bob's sister she was working on ornaments for a bazaar to benefit the nursing home.  She had been given a kit for these.  I helped her and we laughed at these, saying they were so ugly.  She laughed harder at Christmas when she gave me this one.  It's been gracing our tree for 40 years now!

Look at the detail of this beaded bell!  This was given to me by the family of another resident.  When I knew her, she had Alzheimers and couldn't do this type of thing, but this shows the talent she had. It's another one that brings me joy each year as I remember her, and her family, who I grew to love!

Bob's carved Santa's!

And last, these ornaments with our mom's handwriting on them.  The writing was taken from notes they had given us, and copied onto the felt.  My mom has been gone for 17 years, Bobs mom has been gone for 2.  These are treasures.

Sunday, December 12, 2021

It's looking like Christmas!

 Welcome to our home!  I thought I would show you around so you could see what Christmas looks like in our house.

This is the back door, from the garage into the house.  The black milk can is from my Dad's farm, many years ago!  I put a different sign in it for every season.

On the front porch is this porch pot.  I also have 2 small trees by the front door that light up at night.

And this big snowflake near the roof.

In the living room is this mini nativity that I made when I was helping with our local MOPS group.

And this on another side table.

We don't have a fireplace so our stockings are hung on a shelf!

Our Christmas tree is a skinny one, since our living room is not real big.

One more table in the living room.

Here's the dining room.  We have a little tree in the corner with just lights on it.  It adds such a cheery note to the room.  The little Joy banner under the clock was a gift from Connie of Crafty Home Cottage.

And here is our card holder.  There are some there from some of you!

There are even some decorations in our bathroom.

And last, but not least is our downstairs family room.  This is Bob's family's nativity set which came to us when his Mom passed away.

One more tree - just a little one.

Tomorrow I'll show you some of the decorations that are special to me.

Thursday, December 9, 2021

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Cooking Thursday

 It's been cold here, perfect soup weather.  This recipe is one I've shared before, but when I made it last week, I was reminded of how good it was, and how easy it is to make.  So, I'm sharing it again...

Cheesy Potato Soup

4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
4 cans (10 3/4 ounces each) Campbell's Condensed Cream of Potato Soup
4 soup cans milk
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 large russet potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 3 cups)
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese (about 8 ounces)

1. Stir the bacon, onion, soup, milk, black pepper and potatoes in a 6 quart slow cooker.
2. Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 hours or until the potatoes are tender.
3. Add the cheese and stir until the cheese is melted. 

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Monday, December 6, 2021

Last Day

 Thursday was my last day at work in my current position. Thursdays are the day that our Doctor comes in and sees people. I spent the morning trying to get all the lab orders in for the next month, finishing up infection control reports and writing out instructions for the nurse who will be taking my place.
At noon the Doctor arrived.  He did some paperwork, then worked on admitted a new resident.  After seeing a few other people, we were paged to go to our training room, where there was a going away party for me!

There was this cake, and punch.

Some people had brought flowers.

And there were sweet cards and notes.  
I've been blessed to work with so many wonderful people; I've met and become friends with residents and their families, so it was sad to leave, and I will admit to some tears as I left the building.
I plan to go back and help at times, so it's not good bye.
And I will also tell you that it's been wonderful to have a whole weekend off, with no phone calls or messages to come to work!
My new job starts Wednesday and I'm excited to see how that goes!

Sunday, December 5, 2021

A Day in my Life

Can you believe - it's December!  Here's how my first day of the month went.

It was a bit of an unusual day.  Tues night, I got a call that the night nurse had called in. Our Director of Nursing was already working the evening shift and had been there during the day, so I said I would come in to work at 10:30 pm.  I took a little nap and came to work... so I started my December 1 at work.

Here is one hall, looking very quiet.  However, it really wasn't.  One man was near death.  His son and wife were at his bedside and we were frequently in the room checking him.  He passed away about 3:30 am.  Another man was up at the nurses station with me.  He wasn't tired and just wanted to talk.  Another lady was up and very confused.  She was sure she should be getting ready to go somewhere and was upset that I wasn't calling her daughter to come pick her up.  She agreed to wait until morning, and settled down with some cookies and milk.  :)

At about 2:30 in the morning, I had a call from the pharmacy delivery person saying he was coming with our med delivery, but would also have our new IV tote.  When these delivery's come, there is a lot of checking and signing that has to be done to make sure what was supposed to come, really did come, and then signing that you have accepted it.

There is a med pass that needs to be done between 5 and 6 am; with meds that should be taken on an empty stomach.  That takes about 45 minutes, and then there is the never ending charting that needs to be done.

Because I had a death on my shift, there was extra paperwork and phone calls to be made, but I was ready at 6:30 when my replacement came. I gave report and we also have to count all the narcotics to make sure nothing is missing.

Then I went to my office to get some things done.  My office is getting emptier every day.  At this time I had only a few more days in this position so I'd been sorting things out, cleaning off the bulletin board and trying to organize so the next person would find it easy to find things and work here.

The nurse who replaced me, knew that I had worked the night without much sleep, so she brought in a Frappuccino to keep me going!  :)
I got a bunch of paper work done, and also prepared charts for the doctor visits the next day.
I left about 9:30 am.


Look what I saw on the way home!  The long horn cattle were out.

I think they are majestic animals.

I came home, emptied out the bag of things I had taken from the office; a sign, photo, fan, pens, cup...

I crawled into bed a little after 10.

I got up at 2:30.  (I couldn't sleep for too long or I would have trouble sleeping that night)

I sat and did some work on our Christmas cards.

Bob came home around 3:30.  He had picked up our groceries. I order our groceries online and we just have to pull in and pick them up. That worked out very well on this day!

We had a simple supper I had in the crockpot - pulled pork sandwiches.

After supper, Bob went to church for a mens group gathering.

I had some chicken that I wanted to make some freezer meals with.  Here's the pasta cooking and the beginning of a sauce.

Here are two pans of Tuscan Chicken...

and two bowls of Cheesy Chicken soup, all ready for the freezer.

Then it was time to relax, and off to bed at 10pm.
Another good day!