Tid bits.

Well, the bidding continues for nursing skills. I am so risk averse in terms of making a living. I want a secure job, I want to be able to find a job wherever I am – under any circumstance. I can be paranoid about losing everything and so I need/want to know that I can start from ground zero and immediately provide for my family. (This might be some good therapy fodder. In the modern parlance – a scarcity mindset. I’ve worked on it, but it’s still there, not in an obsessive way, just in a Doris way). I’m somewhat comforted that I’d be able to make $250 an hour like next week if I wanted or needed to – even if it meant moving to Idaho and I’d be thrown into a chaotic pandemic work environment. Never did I think the nursing degree could outstrip my engineering degree, but the world is a crazy place right now.

I probably spend about 10 hours a week running, or prepping for a run or stretching after a run (this is way less than Jeremy does on biking). Now, since it’s after my race, I’m taking at least a couple of weeks off running. This week, absolutely no running. Next week, I want to swim – I think the outdoor pool is open. As soon as I gave up the running this week, I feel like those 10 hours have been swallowed up again with other things. If I had never run before, and I asked myself, you think you can run an hour a day, I’d say – no you are crazy! Where would I find the time? Obvs, I’m turning towards other things that I love to do but don’t have time.

Birthday dinner.

Jeremy made me a wonderful birthday dinner last night – lamb, cheesy potatoes, asparagus, a delicious salad with blue cheese chunks and candied pecans (no photos! sorry!). We had a lovely red wine that Colleen had given us this past weekend.

My parents came over for dinner and not only did I have the wine, but I had two slices of my birthday cake. Inspired by me, everyone had a second slice, except for Jeremy who is still weight-conscious for his bike race in a few weeks. I feel very fortunate this birthday with many, many blessings including very big ones like my health, family and friends and the people who help Edda everyday and very small ones like the last, extra slice of birthday cake waiting in the fridge for me for the day-after-my-birthday (by myself) celebration.

49.

It’s my birthday! I feel like this is my last birthday in my “youth”. I’m 49. (It’s one of my favorite numbers – seven squared). Once I’m 50, I’ve for sure crested the hill – more than halfway done. Of course, I’m pretty sure I’m more than halfway done now, but it’s a psychological thing. I think I didn’t convey how excited I was in yesterday’s post regarding the Cherry Blossom. I was completely THRILLED to run that time of 1:35:54. It surpassed all my goals which were in order of difficulty: to finish and be grateful that my body can move for 10 miles, to run faster than twice as slow as three time olympian Jenny Simpson (52:16, 2nd place – so 1:44:32), to beat my time from 2013 when I was 40 years old of 1:42:23, to run under 1:40 – 10 min pace, to pace well, to run faster each mile, to feel strong the whole way.

Today, I’m going to eat cake to celebrate my birthday and have some wine. Jeremy showed me the slideshow Google photos made of me on his phone – all the way from before we had kids until now.

Vince is going to vote in the CA recall election today. Let’s see what happens.

Cherry Blossom.

OK, my first road race in forever. Beautiful day! I made my way downtown via the metro.

It’s a 10 mile race, a long way to run. Here are the splits:

I ran with the 1:40 pace group for about 7 miles. The only other Doris in the entire field was also in that pace group. Our pacer was pacing a bit too fast for 1:40 – so if 1:40 was your stretch goal, then the pace group was going too hard for you. I like to negative split races meaning that you run the second half faster than the first half and I really want it to be a progressive run meaning each mile should be faster than the mile before. When you negative split a race, you are almost certainly passing everyone in the last miles which is a great motivator to keep going.

And then Sofi came over with Jojo. I tried to take a nap while they were here, but Jojo parked herself on my lap and then proceeded to attack me with doggie kisses. It was not very restful, but it was very funny.

Tid bits.

My parents cooked long life noodles for me and Jeremy last night. It was delicious.

My mom made this cheesecake – not too sweet!

We caught a mouse this morning. Hello!

Jeremy is trying out various bike mounts on the car. He’s traveling soon to his goal bike race and needs to bring the bike with him.

So my 10 mile race is tomorrow. I’m not feeling super confident, but that’s pretty normal for me. I want to finish strong. To be patient and steady, but also brave at times. Wish me luck!

Stairlift

The stairlift has been squeaking terribly for the past few weeks (months?) and we are trying to fix it. While I was taking it apart, I noticed that the battery connections were corroded. So that needs to be cleaned and new batteries need to be ordered. I leaned on Jeremy and his lubrication knowledge – he spends an inordinate amount of time thinking of different types of lubrication because of his bike chains/maintenance. I just wanted to kind of cover the whole thing in WD-40, but Jeremy was like -nonono! WD-40 dissolves all the existing lubricants, it’ll be no good in the long run.

So I thought one of these wheels was stuck and not rolling, so Jeremy found a particular lube that he uses for his bike and dripped it onto to stuck wheel and we let it sit overnight and then this morning, it rolled! no squeaking. You can see on the base of the chairlift when it was manufactured – we’ve had this stairlift for almost ten years. This was easier than my solution which was to take the whole chair off the rail. It’s easy to find dishwasher repair videos, it’s much harder to find stair lift repair manuals and none show a person removing a chair from the rail. And if I screwed up, I’d be carrying Edda up and down the stairs for a while until I got a repairperson to come.

Movies and passwords.

Thu, organizer extraordinaire, reserved a whole theatre for her vaxxed friends to see Shang-Chi and the Legends of the Ten Rings. We went (Ning minded Edda for the evening), Seth, Christine, Jane and George also went. You can see me and Jeremy in the upper right corner with our hands waving. Of course, I hadn’t been to a movie in – forever. I’ve been loving seeing all these movies/shows with Asians in the lead roles, in just the last month I’ve watched Never Have I Ever (Netflix), The Chair (Netflix) and now this movie. Much of the movie is in Chinese. I have a weird feeling that for this “narration” kind of language where the wording is a bit more formal and the enunciation clear and the speech is steady (think NPR or This American Life), that I might understand more Spanish than Chinese since Spanish is so close to English. Chinese is still much, much better for casual, spontaneous conversational talking. I still can’t spill out the simplest things in Spanish.

We are still looking for someone to help with Edda in the evenings. Yesterday we had a promising lead, but, as was inevitable sometime during the search, she told me she wasn’t vaccinated. This was someone who works in the public school system during the day. I was disappointed, but not surprised, but I didn’t take the opportunity to encourage her to get the vaccine which I had promised myself I would try to do each time when faced with an unvaccinated person. I’m still struggling myself with being productive, I still do mostly want to lie in bed and watch TV. I feel like 2 years ago, I could cross things off my list quickly and to-do lists were motivating. Now, I find them onerous, but had been making strides by cutting back my obligations. But things can throw me off, like the unvaxxed childcare conversation happened at 2:30 pm, which I wasn’t expecting and then I knew I had to leave the house at 4:30 to get Edda from aftercare and I couldn’t muster myself to work well after the phone call. I think in the past, I would have been able to do that easily, but not yesterday. And I decided, finally, that I needed a password manager, so I started that a few days ago. There are just too many passwords that need to be kept track of and that need to be shared with Jeremy and Vince. So I’m paying for a password manager and added like two simple, non-critical things to it to try to learn how to use it, Southwest and WordPress, and the I got to the first financial website and they want me to *call* them to change the password. But I think Jeremy needs to call because I think, technically, it’s his account. And then I just want to go to bed and watch TV. Hahaha.

Birthday and racing.

Yesterday was Jeremy’s birthday. He turned 53. I asked him if he wanted a small birthday party – pizza and ice cream and he declined. He’s spent the last few months preparing and training for this one hour mountain climb race and he’s still trying to drop weight and doesn’t want extra food in the house. He’s now thinner than I’ve ever known him and the last time he was at this weight, he was in high school.

You know Jenny Simpson? She’s a three time olympian, bronze medalist in the 1500 in the Rio Games. She’s making her long distance debut at my (haha! my) road race on Sunday. The run on Sunday is hosting the USATF Men’s and Women’s Ten Mile Championships – so just so you know, I’m running in the National Ten Mile Championships this weekend. I think Jenny is going to try to run it in about 52 minutes. 5:12 per mile pace. One of my goals is to run faster than twice as slow as Jenny Simpson. Hahahaha. Jeremy is a better athlete than me because I think he’s trying to only be 15-20% 50% (edit from Jeremy (40 min for a pro cyclist, 1 hour for Jeremy)) slower than the winning time of the uphill mountain climb. Jeremy also notes though that I’m sandbagging (likely to meet my goal) and he’s setting an aggressive goal (all the stars need to align).

Furniture.

The furniture did make it to Philly. The unloading was more expertly done than the loading. The German chest:

The NYC murphy bed which needs to be anchored to the wall/floor and will be done another time.

The Taiwanese table with glass top. I’m happy the furniture is back with the original owners and I think Bob and Katherine are happy to have the furniture back. We’ve been, in Rockville, unfurling the house back into our “empty nest” configuration – with Vince gone and all this extra furniture gone. Our house is still full and needs more decluttering, but I think I got over 1,000 pounds out of the house this weekend.

Jeremy took ground transit for the first time in over 18 months. First the train to DC.

And then the Metro with his new comfy behind the head KN95 masks.

I was at the hospital yesterday. Somehow, the night charge nurse, managed to keep full nurse staffing on kind of an empty floor (both of our techs called out – that was the reason) and so I had three patients for like 80% of the day. When she handed me the assignment, she’s like – it’s Christmas today. A dream. I got all of my online training done for the new software implementing in October during my shift. That is going to be a mess. I found out that a couple of nurses are doing local COVID contracts – 8 week contract for three shifts a week for $3900 per week. That’s $1,300 a shift. That is a lot of $ and I’m curious to hear how the experience is. You know when you work on a covid unit, most everyone is a travel nurse and so no one there really is friends with each other – you go to work and no one says hello to you and you gotta take care of folks who decided to not get vaccinated. I think the $3900 is reasonable and pretty much what it takes to get someone to work on that unit. Everyone is in/out to make their money and go home.