Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Guest post of Lemonade Life

The lovely Allison of Lemonade Life invited me to write a guest post for her blog about diabetes.

Check it out here, and if you haven't already read her blog, I encourage you to do so now! :D

Thanks Allison!

p.s. Today I am soooo happy because I have 10 followers of my blog! Woohoo! Thank you wonderful people, I shall have to make you something special. What would you like? :D

Monday, June 28, 2010

Cross your fingers and toes!

I went for a job interview today! Everything seemed to go well and I am quietly confident. :) We shall see, I hope to hear back about it soon.

It's raining raining raining here, nearly to the point of flooding, but not quite. Hair which I had so carefully straightened turned to a frizz-monster-nightmare in 30 seconds. Sigh. Ah well. :P

Technically, today is my first day of actual unemployment. I got some paid leave from the date they made me "redundant" at my last job. So it's quite fitting I think that I spent the day finding a new job! *hopefully*

My mates at my old job put on Friday drinkies at a local pub to sort of have a farewell for me. It was really sweet, wonderful to see everyone again. They had all pitched in and got me a couple of pressies which I hadn't expected, and a couple of people gave impromptu speeches which were really heartfelt. Made me realise I have more friends in this world that I had reckoned with. :D

OK, short post today cos I have to go and pick the rug rats up from school. Ten cents says they will be absolutely soaked! :P

(and send me a photo if you successfully crossed your toes. That's just freaky!)

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A telling blood test

I'm watching Ocean's Eleven on telly, so this post may be a bit erratic as I type-and-watch at the same time :P

I talked about how I went to get my last pre-fertility-clinic blood tests a couple of posts back, well, Hubby got his test done today :) I'm so proud! He's not a big fan of needles.

And, the best part was that we have the kids to stay with us this weekend, and in order to get everyone in the car in time to get to the lab which closed in half an hour cos it's a Saturday (breath) Hubby ended up explaining to the two littlies why he was getting a blood test. So know everyone in our family knows the plan, and they all seemed really happy about it. :)

Youngest step-son even asked "Is IVF that thing we saw on telly last weekend, on the Sunday show, with Jay Jay and Dom?" YES! Well done! (he's 9yrs old) :D

They got a quick explanation of what it involves: taking a sperm from Hubby and a egg from me, and mixing it in a dish in a laboratory (not a lavatory, which caused much laughter!). Of course that involved a quick explanation to 9yr old step-son about why it was all necessary. Cue: a quick description of a vasectomy. Honestly, it was one of the most surreal moments of my life. :)

And then it was off to the lab for the blood test, and then off to the supermarket to get lunch.

p.s. in case you're wondering, llittle sister hasn't written her boy a Dear John letter just yet.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Naughty seagulls

I absolutely exhausted myself yesterday by riding my bike just a bit too far. It was good fun though, I got up early and got to see the early morning sun over the mountain. It was a beautiful clear, cold winter day. It seems silly to wear a scarf and gloves when you go biking, but I was thankful that I looked like a snowman as I pedalled through the chilly air!

It's a total of 20kms there and back, and I was going ok until I had to take a detour from my usual route. Some workmen were repairing a section of the track, so I had to ride up a hill and through a small shopping suburb to get out to the lake. Just as I was passing the busiest part, a flock of seagulls dive-bombed me and pooped all over me! :( People on the sidewalk must have thought I was nuts - a mad swearing woman waving her arms and she pedals madly though the shops! :P

Add to that, my phone started to ring (I was expecting a call from my lawyer) so I had to jump off my bike and scrabble through my backpack to find the ringing phone - all while covered in muck! What a morning! :P I sure do know how to have fun :P

How has your week been? I hope you have a nice weekend planned :D

Monday, June 21, 2010

My Darling Sister

My sweet little sister is having a hard time at the moment. We went shopping on the weekend and she confided in me that she's not happy in her relationship with her boyfriend. They've been together for 7 years, and he recently moved away to another city to study. Sis has discovered that she quite likes being single again, and this long distance relationship thing isn't working out. The boyfriend is sweet, but a bit dumb and emotionally immature. I can't say I'm surprised. I think lil sis has just outgrown him. She wants grown up things like a house, an engagement ring, and a family. He thinks it's ok to take off to another city for 9 months without a proper discussion. Just "Hey, I've paid for this course in [name of city] so I will moving away shortly". Needless to say that was just the icing on the cake. I think she is finally being honest with herself now, and just needs to work up the gumption to tell him. I feel so sorry for her. She's feeling guilty as hell that she's gonna ruin his life, but it's just one of those things. Neither of them did anything wrong, it's just how life rolls. :(   So, I'm worried for her. And boyfriend comes back up to our city in roughly 2 weeks, so she's on a countdown.

In other news, I've officially started my job-hunt and sent in a couple of applications. Will keep you posted should anything exciting happen (like getting a cool job such as kitten-petter, chocolate-taster, or tropical-island-holiday-reviewer). But it feels good to be doing something positive :D

Saturday, June 19, 2010

More blood tests tomorrow

Oh! *looks at clock* Actually, I meant later TODAY! haha :P

I will finally get the last of my pre-fertility-clinic blood tests done. All that's left for me is Day 2 FSH, LH, and Oestradiol, and Hubby's immunology tests. It's been a drama for me to get this test done, as the world and my body seems to always be conspiring against me.

First it was just plain old forgetting. My first "Day 2" occurred the day after the ob/gyn dropped the whole IVF bombshell in my lap. So I was not really in the right headspace to remember ANYTHING at that stage. The next Day 2 I just plain old forgot. Trust me, I was kicking myself when I realised I had missed that opportunity! :S

Next up, I had the hysteroscopy operation, which triggered an early period. So I didn't know when exactly Day 2 was. Sigh.... more waiting.

That brings us to today (ok, it's the middle of the night still :P). And I am proud to have remembered! Now... if only my ob/gyn will get my referral letter written and sent....  :)

In Other News
or, to congratulate you for reading through such a damn boring post :P

Have you seen Dumbo Feather, pass it on? It's a half mag/half book and I luuuurve it. I saw the publisher, Kate Bezar, speak at a conference 2 years ago and I've been on the lookout for Dumbo Feather ever since. Sometimes it can be hard to find, but it's worth it when you do! Unlike most mags, it's not full of glossy yucky ads. It's not full of beautiful people. And it's not full of "filler" body copy. It's a beautiful tactile size on quality matte stock, with gorgeous photography and best of all, 5 interviews/essays/articles per issue.

Have a great weekend! :D

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Om nom nom nom (photos)

I made cake! Yummy cranberry, buttermilk, hazelnut and banana cake. The recipe came from the Dole Banana Book.
170g cranberries
100g butter
225g caster sugar
2 eggs
285g flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3 Dole bananas, mashed
80mls buttermilk
I added hazelnuts on top too :)

1. Cover cranberries with boiling water and leave to soak for 15 mins. Strain and discard liquid.

2. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease a cake tin well with butter (I used a cooking spray).

3. Cream the butter and sugar until pale. Add eggs one at a time beating continuously.

4. Sift in the flour, baking soda and salt. Add mashed banana, cranberries and buttermilk then stir to combine.

5. Transfer to baking tin. Bake for 30 - 40 minutes until a skewer comes out clean.

6. Om nom nom nom! :D

In other news:

There are a bunch of toadstools in our back garden.
It snowed. It's cold. But it's great to be able to take this photo...
...and this photo on the same afternoon :) Oh, and that's BIKING from one place to the other.
My new camellia hedge is brightening up winter, it makes me smile:
Oh, and I got some red in my hair :D Just the underneath bits, so you can't really tell unless you walk behind me in the wind :P And then it's a little surprise!
Hope you've all had a great Wednesday :)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

When patience is not a virtue

We have been sitting here patiently waiting for an appointment for our first consult at the fertility clinic since Feb 2010. Yesterday I called my ob-gyn's office to see what was happening. He's supposed to be writing a referral letter to the fertility clinic for us. The lovely receptionist called me back today, to let me know that my paper work was "still in her typing pile" and she "would do it tomorrow", which is today. Argh! All that time wasted! Nearly 4 months :(

Oh well, at least I called - now things should get rolling, hopefully.

p.s. took my first pre-natal vitamins this morning. Feels good.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Today was a test for me: I had nothing planned. No work to go to. No appointments with lawyers. No Hubby home from work to talk to. All my friends and family would be at their jobs all day. I had to find something to do!

I've done 2 loads of washing. I cleaned the kitchen. I wrote my resume. I hunted for jobs online (and found 2 which I will apply for, but I don't realistically expect to get). I did the groceries, and bought a new hairbrush. I bought the prettiest pink nail polish because the colour made me happy (Orly's Je t'aime - you really can't got wrong with a name like that!).
And I finally "manned up" and went to speak to my lovely pharmacist about pre-natal vitamins. They were fantastic! They loaded me up with this Blackmore's Pregnancy and Breastfeeding Gold, and also a special 5mg folic acid supplement to take because I'm a T1.
I tried calling my ob/gyn to see why I haven't had a referral to the fertility clinic yet, but the kindly receptionist explained that they were swamped and could she call back tomorrow? Come to think of it, I'm also waiting on a call from the lawyer today... and that hasn't happened either.

Oh, and I got woken up this morning by a phone call from my lovely aunt. She's an absolute sweetie. While my Dad is stressed about my "redundancy" and gets all worried, my aunt gets MAD! She was telling me not to sign anything! Take them to court! Get their name smeared across the papers etc etc. Sigh. If I was a rich girl... maybe I would consider doing that sort of thing. At the moment I think I will have to let them buy me off, because I can't afford the possibility of losing an employment battle.

I had noticed that my blood sugars had been riding quite high over the high-stress days of the last week. Yesterday, they were approaching normal, but after the phone call with Auntie I was back up to the ceiling. :P I've just got to try and keep calm. Everyone keeps telling me they can't believe how calm and "together" I seem to be. Well, maybe it's because at the end of the day I am happy to get out of that place, and now I feel very much like I've been given a second chance. (Don't get me wrong. My boss is still a raving lunatic. And what he did was still incredibly illegal in this day and age, there's no doubt about that.) I believe this will give me some time to re-evaluate what's important in my life, and create some new plans. :)

So, how's your Monday?

Friday, June 11, 2010

Pasta, Puzzles, and Lawyers

Got myself a lawyer today. A really nice one. Yes, she is going to charge me the earth :P

But it feels really good to know that what my boss did to me was officially very illegal. I'm not crazy, and you can't just offer someone the choice between resigning or taking redundancy. It just don't work like that! So now I have some backup, and a plan, and I feel much better.

Had a morning tea get together with some of my mates from my ex-work. They are pretty shaken up about the whole thing. Giving me big hugs, lots of advice, and telling me how they're now looking over their shoulders all the time. That's really sad. I will be ok, but I'm worried about them having to continue working under those conditions. There are not many options in our little city.

One of my good friends brought her young son, and as she is currently on maternity leave, I hadn't seen her in about a week. She's the same friend who was diagnosed with gestational diabetes. Her little boy has grown up so much since I saw him last, he was running around and generally being adorable. And of course, she looked absolutely radiant! I talked to her about how I wasn't sure how being unemployed would affect our plans for IVF. Especially since I will now not get maternity leave. She basically said it wasn't that much money anyway, and being on a single income shouldn't really stop us from doing what we want. Made me feel good anyway, stopped me thinking that my life depends on work!

We've got the kids this weekend, and I made a yummy pasta bake which they basically slurped up before it was out of the oven! After a was-jig puzzle and some telly, I am sooooo ready for the weekend!

Once again, thank you to everyone our there on the interwebs for your supportive comments and emails. You rock! Gold stars all round! :D

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Aaaargh! Lawyers!

After the shock and awe of yesterday, I have been on the lawyer hunt. Every employment specialist I call has to do a "conflict of interest check", to make sure they didn't do any work with my ex-employer. So far I've struck out with two great lawyers. Dumb. So now I'm working my way down the list of good lawyers.

Oh, and the HR manager called me. I told her how pissed off I was about the process not being followed properly. She pretended she didn't know a thing. Typical. I get to have a meeting next wednesday. Will discuss my exit package.

On the bright side, I have had so much support from my friends and family, and the wonderful online community. Just wonderful. Thanks everyone for your kind words! It's made me feel not so alone in this. :)

My coworkers are all pretty shook-up, worried about me, and scared now for their own jobs. I hate to see that. The rug has been pulled out from under me, but the ground definitely shook for them.

I have started to realise just how loooong a day can be. I've been so focused on this event, and reading up legal articles and the interwebs, and calling lawyers, that I was just totally zonked by this evening. My blood sugars were climbing because of the stress. I even changed a vial of Humalog cos I convinced myself it was "off".

So tonite I decided I needed a de-stress and relax, and booked in for a haircut with my lovely new hairdresser. She was wonderful! We talked for 45mins about life, the universe, and why hairdressers never hold the hairdryer by the handle. And she even spent extra time giving me a scalp massage before, and curls after! How great is that! I came home and Hubby said I looked like a new woman. Wait until Tuesday... be continued... hehehe :P

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Big bad news

I got a complete shock this morning when the CEO of the company called me into his office and told me I was now redundant. What? I think I am still in shock. It's not been a happy day so far, but I think I will pull through. Feels like the recession is just hitting the regions later than the big cities.

I had a massive low during the "meeting" and had to stop and ask for sugar. Of course, Mr Big Banana didn't understand when I said, "I'm going low", and "I need some sugar" but he started to get the message when I said "I'm going to pass out". At first he got me a single mint. When that obviously wasn't enough, he found a chocolate bar. Half eaten, stolen from his personal assistant.

So from now on I have four months of paid leave. I won't know what to do with myself. I worked for that company for 5 years, and have been in school or university all my life. I've never not had anything to do. I will sit down and write myself a plan, and start the job hunt.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

I'm doing the wimpy-chicken

No, it's not a fun new dance. It's me being a scaredy-cat. Let me explain.

I was a good girl this evening, and on my drive home from work I remembered that I was nearly out of diabetes supplies, so I called into the pharmacy. In the carpark I decided that I would ask my pharmacist about whether I should start taking pre-natal vitamins, mainly folic acid. I was all psyched up.

I get in the door of the pharmacy and it's packed with folks coming in after work with the sniffles. Because my pharmacist sees me every 4 weeks or so, he gestured for me to come to the front of the pack. Much to the disgruntlement of the other patrons! haha :P He doesn't even need to ask my name, just "do you want everything this time?" "Yup" And 2 mins later a parcel of Humalog, Lantus, and test strips will appear on the counter. So there wasn't time enough for me to get across the pharmacy and look at the vitamins.

I was about to ask the pharmacist about folic acid, or maybe ask to speak in the private room, but it was soooo busy, and then a colleague from work walked in and said hi, and I chickened out. Wimp! Oh well, next time.

Perhaps I should call my GP to ask him? I had remembered the TV ads for Elevit said something about their vitamins being the only one to contain the amount of folic acid as recommended by the NZ Ministry of Health. (Elevit has 0.8mg folic acid.) So I did a bit of checking, and found this guide from the MoH (PDF, 825 Kb).

In section 3.6 it says that yes, 0.8mg is fine for "normal" women, but their recommendation for Type 1 diabetics is a whopping 5mg! Wow! It also says that it's best to take a folate supplement for at least 4 weeks prior to conception. I've already had my Endo casually mention that I should be on prenatal vitamins... but I have no idea when this IVF gig will kick off.

Speaking of which, I'm getting a bit miffed (translation: slightly grumpy and a little worried) that I've not yet heard anything from the fertility clinic about an initial appointment. I don't know if perhaps it's because my ob/gyn has not sent through my file, or maybe it's because Hubby and I have not yet completed our blood tests? Not sure. I must phone my ob/gyn to see what's up. Maybe the waiting list is just too long?

In local news, we've had some flooding in our region, and the wind is nasty. Our house is 90% painted, but the roofers seem to have disappeared completely! Oh, and my poor hands are aching in the cold :( Wah! Off to make a nice hot cup of tea! :D

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Testing on the road

This is me, testing my blood sugar this morning:

Hubby and I went for a bike ride along the sea front. It's roughly 10Kms, but today at 11.30am there was a ceremony and ribbon-cutting ceremony for the opening of a new pedestrian bridge, Te Rewa Rewa:
This makes the whole promenade an extra 3Kms. We left home at 11am, and pedalled like mad to the other end to reach the bridge in time for the ceremony. Made it at 11.28! We hopped off our bikes, and joined the crowd of people waiting to cross for the first time. And then I started to feel a bit off. The world started to swim in front of me, and I felt ill. Hubby got a bit worried, so I quickly did a test. With hundreds of people around me, I got 10mmol/L. Perfect. :) I wasn't low, just unfit! haha

Friday, June 4, 2010

It's the little things

So, I've been a bit slack this week. My poor blog got a bit neglected, but I hope you will all forgive me with this post!

I went to see my dietician on Thursday. It was fantastic. Absolutely, I couldn't have asked for better. She understands.

She looked over my log book, which is jam-packed with my tiny scribblings, and assumed that I was on a pump due to the sheer amount of information I collect. And how often I test. And how I'm trying to get my carb counting down pat. I took that as a Good Thing, since she followed up by saying I was doing all that was possible without a pump! Finally, can I get a hell-yeeah! :D

Looking over the book, she was able to spot some wonky high numbers in the past week and a half. I explained that I couldn't explain them, so she explained that in each instance they were caused by me having a meal with high fat content. This meant that I would give my insulin, get a low cos the food hadn't "kicked in" soon enough, and then go high about 2 - 4 hrs later when the fatty meal got digested, by which time there was no Humalog left in my system. What a great explanation! Actually helpful! :D She was able to sort out what ALL of my wonky numbers were caused by.

The other reason was when my carb counts were a bit off, and this would always be caused by eating a meal that I didn't cook - restaurants, bakeries, hubby's cooking etc. Yummy but unpredictable. :P

I feel so empowered to know these two little piece of information. It's like everything has just slotted into place since seeing her. Here is a day of test results from
BEFORE: 12.6, 15.4, 12.1, 8.6, 2.5, 16.3, 15.5, 11.7

OK so that day was nothing special, a couple of highs and only one low. But look where I'm at now!
AFTER: 5.4, 9.0, 6.7, 6.6, 8.2, 5.4, 6.6, 6.1, 6.3 - this is today :D So steady, nothing above 9.0, no hypos, no lows. Wahoo!

At the end of the appointment, she enquired about my next visit to see my nurse educator, and then she offered to share our next appointment so I get to see both of them at once! I love getting my docs in the same room together. Especially when one of them seems to understand me so well, and the other sometimes seems to mistrust my ability to a) carb count or b) dose insulin correctly. For the record, I think I do rather well, considering I've never actually been formally taught either topic. :P

Meeting with my dietician has just proved that a well trained sympathetic eye can spot issues that need refining. I finally feel like I'm getting a handle on this. I mean, honestly, I haven't had a day as stable as today in years. I feel great. :) It's the little things that make me happy. See also:

In other news, you may not be aware but I am a photographer. Or at least I'm trying to be. I've joined up with my local camera club, and got myself a shiny piece of camera apparatus. I entered a competition "people, portraits, stories", and won an honours with this image of my gorgeous little sister:

So that's my happy post for this week :) It's a long weekend here, which makes me even happier!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

10 things that make me happy!

From Saffy at :)

Saffy from is encouraging all her blog readers to join in the fun and list 10 things that make them happy. If you're reading along, and have 5mins to spare, have a go! I would love to know your top 10!

The rules are as follows:

1. Copy and paste the award onto your blog

2. List who gave the award to you and add a link to their blog.

3. List 10 things that make you happy.

4. Pass the award onto other blogs and let them know you have done so. (that's you, my dear readers!!!)

Ok, here goes. These things make me happy:

1. Thinking of my wedding day :)
2. Coming home from a good day at work to find Hubby has bought groceries and is cooking me dinner!
3. Waking up with kitty sleeping next to me on my pillow.
4. Having a laugh with my friends.
5. Shopping with my sister. Shoooooes!
6. Relaxing with my family. Especially if it involves a roast chicken dinner! Yum!
7. That adrenaline rush I get when I upload a new website for the first time. Yes, I'm a geek :P
8. Having someone understand. Doesn't matter what the issue is, and it doesn't matter where in the world they are :D
9. Chocolate.
10. And feeling healthy while getting good blood sugars, despite number 9!

Oh and I can think of so many other things that make me happy! Like getting out and taking photos. Going exploring. Dinner at our favourite little Italian restaurant where the waitress knows our drink orders by heart. Cooking a big dinner for ALL the family and kids. Watching a whodunit on telly and figuring out the mystery. Seeing the kids faces when they open their Christmas pressies. I can think of heaps! How about you?

Post a comment to let me know you're taking part! :D

Check out this article

According to the BBC, the pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk is withdrawing it's insulin from sale in Greece, due to that country's response to it's own financial woes. An estimated 50,000 Greeks use this brand of insulin, and it is expected to cause problems in the diabetic community there.

You can read the full article here.

At least Novo Nordisk is offering a replacement... oh wait! What? Glucagen! No, that is not an insulin product - it's for putting your blood sugar up! D'oh! :(