Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Lovely Weekend

The weekend was lovely. One of the best parts was the purge - in two days we sold or gave away 3 large bits of stuff. Namely a desk, big screen TV, and old couch. The entire house is cleaner, cozier. I like some stuff. But not too much. Not clutter.

On Saturday evening the husband and I had an official date. A romantic dinner was followed by a thought provoking movie. We had our entire house to ourselves. We celebrated our relationship and enjoyed our non-parent status while looking forward to the Kid's arrival. Next time we want to go out like that we'll have to have a babysitter!

Sunday involved time spent with the Husband's niece and nephew. We made pizza from scratch, went bowling, and enjoyed ice cream. This was followed up by tea at the in-laws.

It was practically perfect.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Thursday 13

I'm on maternity leave. I'm almost 38 weeks pregnant. And I've been working full time. Now I'm off. No baby to occupy my time. No schedule. No car. But I have things to do - stuff to accomplish! Here are 13 things I want to get done before Baby arrives:

1) Prime the trim for the nursery

2) Read a couple of books

3) Enjoy hot baths

4) And long walks with my dog

5) Cook. Maybe even bake.

6) Get all the pictures on my digital camera printed and organized so that the memory card will be empty

7) Create a document for my continuous development requirements for my career. Sooner or later I will be audited.

8) Organize paperwork and file in the filing cabinet

9) Make my house feel like my own again. I swear I've been living here the least over the last 6 mths.

10) Buy a mattress for the crib

11) Get my hair cut and highlighted

12) Have a pedicure, courtesy of the Gyne Oncology group

13) Attempt to appreciate time alone. I understand this is now a limited time offer. Never again shall I be childless.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


It's a pregnant, chocolate lover's dream! The ChocolateFest has apparently been happening in this city for the entire month of April with this girl totally unaware. Now, with the official start of maternity leave commencing today, I have a new mission: Take advantage of as many chocolate specials in the one week remaining this month as possible.

- Friends with whom to indulge
- $5 per dessert

The following top my list:

1) Dark Chocolate Ravioli - Stuffed with raspberry and vanilla, drizzled with white chocolate
(Bamboo on Corydon)

2) Kahlua Cream Chocolate Chip Cookie Monster Torte - Chocolate chip cookie layers filled with Kahlua cream and drizzled with double chocolate ganache
(Dessert Sinsations Cafe)

3) Chocolate Mousse Milles Feuilles - White & Dark chocolate mousse between layers of phyllo dough crisps, garnished with raspberry coulis and chocolate sauce
(Michele's at McPhillips Street Station)

4) Black Forest Trifle - layers of dark chocolate brownie, chocolate mouse, and sweet cherries topped with whipped cream and dark chocolate shavings
(Prairie Ink Restaraunt)

5) Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Tart - Graham cracker crust filled with a truffle mixture, made with chocolate and cream with blended raspberries. Garnished with fresh raspberries.
(Royal Palms at Club Regent)

I am free all day, every day. Any takers?

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Quote of the Day

"There must be some kind of God who comes around some time to some people and helps them"

- An oncologist

Monday, April 14, 2008

Winding Down to Switch It Up

It's my last full week of work before I become *gasp* a parent! Next week consists only of 2 days at my desk. I'm orientating someone to my job. She does the work and I tell her how I usually do things and help her find her own way. I'm doing a lot of housecleaning - typing things up for future reference, taking a half day course, making sure all my paperwork is signed.

Patients are calling to say goodbye and good luck. Patients I've grown to know and care for. Patients who hold on to me as a source of life and hope. It's amazing to me how, in the face of death, women (more so than men?) are fascinated by life. When is your due date? Is this your first? Boy or girl? Are you scared? Can I touch?

Despite all of the moaning and the severe learning curve I've only just started on, I'm going to miss the people of this job. I'm not a desk nurse. I never will be. I know that now. The doctors who know how to give bad news with a caring heart amaze me. I don't know that I could be that strong day after day. Month after month. Year after year. For an entire career. Sometimes they look tired. Tomorrow the social worker I work with will give a letter to the husband of one of my young recently deceased girls. And her shoulders droop and her heart hurts. Yet she keeps doing it. The clerk I work with never complains and just holds things together with great effort and cheer. The people I have the privilege of working with are phenomenal humans.

I know. I will miss this place. But mostly, these people. And I will wonder how my ladies are doing. And I will read the obituaries daily for a long, long time.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

When it Hits

Within the last week I have:

- Sat with a physician who told a 36 yr old that a) she has cancer and b) it's too advanced to treat. I watched her heart break. Tomorrow we meet again.

- Been told by a Mom that not only would one of my youngest and feistiest patients not be in for Chemo on Monday (called to give her an appointment time) but that she wasn't well at all. I spent the rest of my Friday ensuring she was taken care of at home. She died on Saturday. She was 30 and hell bent to fight this disease. It took her down in record time. I met her only a month earlier with minimal symptoms of disease.

- Received a call from the husband of another patient telling me that she was admitted to a palliative ward on Monday. He called back today. She died. She was 28. Just like me. Their first wedding anniversary would have been this summer. She was feeling healthy with no signs of relapse at wedding time.

This evening I went for a reflective walk with my faithful pooch. There is no better therapy than seeing Bentley enjoy every puddle and stick he comes across. I watched the sun set and felt the toque on my head that my sister-in-law hand knit for me. Both of my young patients preferred toques to wigs after chemo had taken their hair. At least during the short season of winter that I knew them.

I felt life kick inside of me. Felt the wind on my face. Saw the colors on the horizon. I thought about the fact that my 4th wedding anniversary is in a month. As well as the due date of our first child. I feel strong and healthy. And I was a solemn kind of happy.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Blanket Making

I've recently started a list of things I want to learn from my Mum. There are so many things that only Mum can do, and I want to know her secrets. Everyone loves the blankets Mum sews. They're bigger and cozier than anything store bought.
A friend's recent delivery gave me the opportunity. Here is proof of my first blanket making session and the Junebug enjoying my efforts.
Next on my list - Cinnamon buns!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


Back in December the Husband purchased a theme park pass from the Disney store in preparation for his trip to Florida. Apparently it's cheaper to do here than once you're out there. It's a significant purchase - a few hundred dollars. He told me which bank account he'd used for the transaction as we had accidentally swapped wallets that day.

Um, honey, the amount we have in savings in that account is exactly zero dollars and zero cents. It's all in the chequing account.

I, being the watchdog of our accounts, checked our transactions diligently. Sooner or later I figured the bank would notice that a significant amount of money had been withdrawn from an empty account. I figured eventually it would be pulled from our chequing account. No such transaction appeared. It seemed we had a ghost account.

Finally three months later I confessed to my uncle, manager of the bank. The next day the husband and I reminded ourselves that honesty is the best policy. We found the receipts and headed to the bank. The Husband drove and I looked at the receipts.

I exclaimed at the amount of money we owed. And then I saw it:

"Transaction not approved. Void"

It wasn't a bank error at all! It was a store error. And so, we headed to the mall hoping that records from 3 months ago would be impossible to find.

We told the store manager our story. Oh yes, she remembered when that happened! Their machine processed it as paid, although the receipt told the truth. Sure, we could pay it now! And so we forked it over and squared up our debt. Thank you. Come again.

I didn't feel good though. I grumbled and complained. We wouldn't have HAD to go back. They would never have found us. As much as we didn't check our receipt, they didn't either. Shouldn't they meet us half way? Or maybe give us some store credit? After all, a baby is clearly on the way. Shouldn't we be rewarded for our honesty?

Then I realized how silly it is to feel entitled when it was me who owed the debt in the first place. The store didn't owe me anything. I owed them.

Yet I still feel strangely ripped off.