Friday, November 18, 2005

don't slow down...

Not to one-up The Gimpy One, but finished 5k on the treadmill in 33:30 today. (Yeah, I'm slow, but you would be too, if you had to swing these enormous thighs around.) I'm trying to get in gear for the Jingle Bell Run in December, which I'll be running w/a friend who's trying to lose some baby weight. I am too! So what if my baby is 3 1/2, and hers is 8 months -- I'm still ahead of the schedule I set with my first. I lost the last of the weight I gained with her when she was 5, about 3 months before I got pregnant with her brother...

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Time to get legit..

I've got a job interview coming up, on Nov 30, for a Nurse Practitioner position at a local clinic. Have met with a couple of people about the job already, and everything is looking good. Maybe there's an end to my all-nighters coming up soon. I'm torn, though, because I do love the place I'm working now. I really wanted to find a spot at the clinic associated with the hospital I work for, but there's no openings right now. Also a friend I work with who just finished an adult NP course and did clinical there was told that they don't hire new NPs who would need a lot of supervision. So maybe I could go back there in a few years.

The place I'm interviewing for is at a family planning clinic, and they don't do OB. So no prenatals, and obviously I wouldn't get to work with the babies, like I do now. But I think I'm finally ready to do what I set out to do here. I've still got a lot to learn...

Sunday, November 13, 2005

made the short list

Just recently finished a week off from work and didn't have any major projects planned. Did lots of cleaning, cooking, gardening, knitting, went to the YMCA every day to work out w/J. Did a lot of reading too. First off was The Girl's Guide to Hunting and Fishing, which I had wanted to pick up for a long time. Unfortunately, I wound up kind of disappointed by this one. The main character reminds me of the narrator of Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress -- clever and smart aleck-y, very open -- saying things out loud that you wish you could say -- but she's very naive at the same time. And she doesn't really grow a whole lot over the course of the book. And nothing really happens. She goes in and out of a couple of relationships, but, you know, that doesn't really count as a plot (to me, anyway). It was a quick read, but I still felt like I kind of wasted that time.

Had much better luck with The Red Tent -- a friend at work recommended reading this one, and I blazed through it, staying up late to finish it in just over a day. I love this kind of mythic/historical fiction (other ones I enjoyed: The King Must Die and The Mists of Avalon). There were great characters in this -- I loved how someone would start out a sympathetic character, then gradually your feeling toward them soured til you were booing them later on. But there was still a sense of integrity of character -- they were still the same person, and you could see where their actions were coming from -- the author hadn't tacked anything onto their personality or radically changed them. That was amazing and seamless. And plot? Oh yeah, stuff happens in this one, big time.

Bonus for me I got to see a lot of midwives at work in this book. I love reading any perspectives about what goes on in the birthing room. (others I can recommend if you're a birth story addict like me are Baby Catcher, by Peggy Vincent, a hospital-based midwife in California; Midwives, fiction, with some scary bits; and A Midwife's Tale, for a first-person, 18th century historical account)

The only problem I had w/The Red Tent was that towards the end it did get a kind of new-agey, post-menopausal/women who wear purple/crone power kind of cliched feel to it. Tough to explain, but easy to spot when you're reading it.

Saturday, November 05, 2005


So, I spent the better part of the last couple of weeks making a halloween costume for C. Now, halloween is a very big holiday for this kid. Last year she wanted to be a ghost. Easy, right? Not in this house. First she spent 2 weeks figuring out a backstory for her costume. She wanted anyone to be able to tell at first glance how her ghost had met its end. She kept notes, trying out and discarding ideas -- would she be a hit-and-run ghost with tire tracks across her chest? How could one make a costume that showed you'd been poisoned?

Fortunately, her 3rd grade class was doing a unit on disasters: Pompeii, the Titanic, the great molasses explosion in the North End of Boston in 1919... (I didn't know that anyone outside of MA had ever heard of that one -- I certainly wouldn't class it with Pompeii...) C. finally decided to be a drowned Titanic ghostie. Her costume was complete with seaweed in her hair and a (futile) life preserver around her neck.

There's S. in the background with a store-bought dragon costume.

This year was easy in comparison. I just had to make a kimono. We got a book from the library that describes how they're traditionally made and gives instructions for taking measurements and making the pattern. I learned all sorts of tidbits -- for example the fabric used in traditional kimonos is only about 13 inches wide, so there are lots of seams, in fact it's considered bad luck to make a kimono without a center back seam, so even if you have wider fabric you're supposed to take a pinch in the middle and sew a seam into it. By hand. Of course, it should be all hand stiched, and the book even gave instructions for how to finish the beginning and end of a line of stitching, so that the seam would be easier to undo. When once a year, you take apart the entire kimono, undoing all the seams, to wash it piece by piece, then stretch the pieces so that they can dry to shape, before resewing the entire flipping thing.

Well, I thought, we'll just adapt these instructions a bit. We bought some lovely turquoise brocade fabric -- truly a miserable diva among fabrics, nearly impossible to pin, cut or stitch without it drifting about in a huge fluid mass. But we got it done.

S. got a store-bought costume, which he was thrilled with. He went to the halloween party at his preschool and there were maybe 5 or 6 little super-heros running around -- with no duplicates (and no Superman!) S. was the Flash, there was a Batman, Robin, Spiderman, and Mr. Incredible too. He'll get store-bought costumes until he asks otherwise -- I'll need to conserve my energy 'til then...