Home > Archive: December, 2016

Archive for December, 2016

Glad the Holidays are Over (More or Less)

December 27th, 2016 at 06:58 am

I don't really count New Year's as a holiday. It's not something we really celebrate as everyone is always in bed well before midnight. So once Christmas has passed I feel like I'm free and clear.

We did not end up going out to the in-laws on Christmas Day. We stayed home. FIL's white cell count was too low to be around anyone who was sick and everyone is sick. Except I am finally coming out the end of it. But MIL and FIL cancelled it. SIL threw a tantrum, because her holiday being ruined was apparently more important than FIL's life and fight against cancer. She got stood up to, though. I wasn't sure they'd do it, but this is the second time this year they have.

Apparently SIL bought a turkey and was going to make it herself. I really want to hear how that turned out since SIL does not know how to cook and has never roasted a chicken, let alone a turkey, in her life. I don't want to hear bad enough to call her, though. I was just relieved to have a quiet, peaceful day at home, not ruined by her scream-fighting with one of her daughters.

We had a very laid back Christmas. Very minimalist. We had our little 18 inch tree set up, still decorated from last year, that we store on the top shelf of our closet. We took it out a few days before Christmas. We just don't have the room to put up a bigger tree and even if we did, the hassle of putting one up is more than anyone wanted to deal with anyway. Most of the presents were handmade, though I did get the 30 year anniversary collector's edition of Labyrinth, my favorite childhood movie.

My son made me a beautiful turkey platter in his pottery class that I will treasure for the rest of my life. It was completely hand-built, no potter's wheel. I really love it.

I am glad we got the chance to really enjoy Christmas this year. I hope everyone else did as well.

Christmas Bonus, Ankle Update, Stress, Health, Rabbit Kit Photos

December 21st, 2016 at 10:14 am

So DH received a Christmas Bonus in the mail from his former employer. We knew we were going to get something because they sent us some paperwork back around Thanksgiving, but I figured it was going to be some token amount or a percentage based on how many months out of the year he'd worked for them (75%). But it was actually $200 more than last year's bonus. Maybe the additional was due to him staying until the bitter end.

Anyway, the amount was $3900.91. So no unemployment this week, but this is way better than that and it means the unemployment will last longer. I am hoping that this bonus will get us through January.

There are starting to be a few more oil jobs being posted. He's put in for two slope listings, but we don't expect to hear anything until after the holidays at this point. Slope usually goes to skeleton crew at this time of year. We expect that oil jobs will pick up now that the electoral college has officially declared Trump president. But we don't expect hiring or interviews to begin until January. No one does stuff over the holidays.

DH did have an in-person interview with the aeronautics company that he did two phone interviews with previously. They are just at the start of the live interview process (he was one of the first, if not the first in person interview they were doing) and they wouldn't hire until the end of January if they hire. It's not a permanent job anyway. It's one that would be series of small contracts as work was available. Not ideal, but better than nothing and the experience in that field would widen his knowledge base.

In two more days, it'll have been 4 months and I am getting antsy. The stress is hard. Seeing savings being depleted is hard. It's a nagging worry that's always in the back of my mind except when it's in the front of my mind. I live with this constant rock in my stomach. I think I might be getting an ulcer from the stress, because I've been eating Tums like they are candy and this with eliminating peppers from my diet.

My ankles finally feel like they are heeling, though. I know I mentioned the bad fall I took and the major sprain of the one ankle, but I don't think I mentioned that I lost my balance and rolled the other ankle about 10 days later and sprained it, too. It had minor swelling and minor pain, and was just enough to make it difficult for me to stand for more than a minute at a time. I still have swelling in the first ankle 5 weeks after the injury, but the pain is mostly just if I press the area where the ligaments were stretched too far or if I do too much standing.

I did get in to see the ENT a week ago and he put me back on steroids and gave me 2 Z-packs and sent a letter to my doctor to be placed in my file about how to treat this condition. He also told me he had sent them one back in March. The on-call doctor had claimed there was no record of this type of treatment. I did find out later that it was in there. Anyway, the ENT is sending a copy of the new letter to me so I can have one, so if they conveniently can't find it in the future I can pull it out of my purse and go, "It looks just like this."

The ENT was really annoyed with my doctor's office. He said I should not be having to go through this crap for 8 weeks before getting the right treatment, when he'd told them before and I told them what it needed to be. I will be looking for a new doctor after the holidays. I want to see a holistic type doctor instead. I'm so tired of doctors who look at me but don't see me. I miss my old doctor so much. Why did he have to get old, retire, and die? I mean, he was only 83. They don't make doctors like him anymore.

But I did get the medicine and it is helping now that it's the right dosage and the meds are being taken together.

We had a litter born on the 18th. There are five healthy kits, 3 broken blacks and 2 that are either solid blacks or steels. I'm leaning toward steels.

The older litter is 5 weeks now. They are doing well. It looks like I have two broken blues, one broken black, one broken steel, a lightly broken fawn, and a steel (black with white hairs mixed in) there. Colors don't fully set until they are older though, so that's just a best estimate for the time being.

Life going on on the farm makes me happy. I am waiting for 3 more does to give birth. They are a day overdue. If the two whites don't have kits this time, I think I will have to declare Jasper a dud. I will give him one more try, but this will make 3 breedings with nothing from him. Zander on the other hand is doing his job, as you can tell from all the broken and colored kits being born.

Oh, yay

December 7th, 2016 at 07:53 pm

Looks like the Christmas spam is starting early. Barely readable, spent too much time using a theasauras, completely off topic, trying too hard to be high brow spam, too.

Unemployment and Emergency Fund Usage to Date

December 4th, 2016 at 04:18 am

DH has been unemployed for 15 weeks. So far I have withdrawn $14,000 from our Emergency Fund to live on. Of that $3597 has gone to pay for insurance premiums, $2970 went to pay for out of pocket medical costs the month we had no insurance, and the stuff insurance does not cover, $1100 went to cover 2 eye exams and 2 pairs of glasses, and $560 went to pay for dental. So $8227 of the $14,000 withdrawn so far has been for medical related expenses.

Of the remaining $5773, $1325 has gone to pay for utilities. $681 has gone to pay for storage. $292.92 has gone to pay for life insurance, $327 for our family gym membership, $91.23 for Netflix, $26.07 for hulu, $350.70 for our cell phones (4 phone basic plan), $242.46 for internet, $200 on feed and bedding for the turkeys, ducks, and chickens (the rabbits are self-supporting), $100 on toiletries, and the rest on groceries, which is about $700 a month or $2100.

Medical costs will remain high. There is no way around that, but we certainly won't have to worry about glasses again for a year or more and dental will be spaced out so we don't get a big hit all at once and will just be cleanings for the four of us.

So there is $6000 left in the Emergency Fund and then I'll have to start dipping into the $45,000 down payment fund. DH has had two phone interviews with one company (not an oil company) and is scheduled for an in person interview with them on the 14th. If he gets it, it won't pay very well, we'll still have to use savings, but it will help until he can get back on elsewhere. And it will be very valuable experience in the aeronautics industry.

The oil companies seem to be holding off on hiring until after the Electoral College confirms Trump as president. One or two have said they are waiting until after the swearing in ceremony, just to be sure. I don't think at this point the election results will be overturned, but the industry is very jumpy still. Hopefully they will be hiring by the time unemployment runs out. Unemployment has all gone to medical, not that it is very much to begin with.

We're getting by. It's hard to see our savings dwindle, but this is precisely what I worked so hard to save this money for. On the bright side it appears as if DH is going to get some sort of company bonus for the portion of the year he did work since they sent him the paperwork asking if he wanted to deposit it to the 401K or just be sent it as a check. No idea how much it will be. It's been running around $3800 for the last several years. With only 8 months instead of 12 months qualifying, it'll probably be 75% of that. Or less.

Whatever week we receive it, we won't get unemployment for that week as it will count as income, obviously. So that will stretch the unemployment out another week. If he does get 75% of the usual, that'll be $2850 which will stretch out our Emergency Fund a little while longer. Then we'll have our tax refund in the February since we always file immediately. We might be able to stretch through February without touching the down payment fund if the timing is right and DH doesn't get hired before then. One can hope.

Cashed Out at Pinecone

December 3rd, 2016 at 06:38 pm

I cashed out at Pinecone yesterday or the day before. It had been a while since I had done it. I had a balance of $48. I've had a lot of surveys lately and one product test from them, so it was a little above average for 2 and half months. Usually I cash out monthly and it is around $12 to $15.

My Opinion of the Doctors at My Doctor's Practice Just Plummeted

December 2nd, 2016 at 04:16 am

I do not need this drama. Why do I flipping attract so much drama? Am I a drama magnet? Seriously, I just want to get better. Why do so many doctors think we don't know our own bodies? Why do they have to be so arrogant in their attitudes? And why, when told why they are wrong do they continue to believe what they want anyway?

No, on call doctor, I cannot take penicillin. I will get hives. I will feel like bugs are crawling all over my body. And if I stay on it long enough, my hives will turn into blisters. And just for kicks and giggles, 5 days in I'll get a roaring yeast infection. See that thing in my chart that says what I am allergic to? Penicillin is the first thing listed.

No, on call doctor, I cannot take doxycyline. It does not work for me. It has not worked in 20 years. None of the cycline drugs, do. Yes, I know the doctor had me take it last year, even though I said it did not work for me. Yes, I know I didn't come back afterwards. That does not mean I got better. That means I finally got into the ENT doctor and he gave me something that actually worked. Which was what I asked you for this time, because I can't get into the ENT until December 13th and I couldn't get into my own doctor until December 7th, even though I was supposed to see him today which is why I'm here seeing you.

Yes, I have had indigestion for the past 3 days. No, that has nothing to do with anything. It has nothing to do with 6 weeks of sinus pressure, fever and chills, stuffiness, coughing up phlegm, painful ears (no longer painful), headache, joint aches, sore throat, and enlarged lymph nodes in my neck. Two weeks ago, they said it was bronchitis and most definitely not the flu, but did not give me antibiotics, just steroids. Now you are telling me it is not a respiratory infection, even though nothing has changed.

So when you finally got over your brilliant idea that it was somehow related to GERD, which I don't have the symptoms of, except for the last 3 days my stomach was a little upset due to a muscle relaxant (Valerian root) I was taking for a muscle knot, which I told you, you grudgingly agreed to give me an antibiotic. We agreed on one by name, and a 14 day supply.

The nurse comes in with a prescription for a 10 day supply--of doxycycline. I was very unhappy. I made her bring the doctor back in. Her excuse was oh, well, that other drug wouldn't actually work for what you have, it's for skin conditions. I asked her why she even brought it up then. She said she made a mistake. I'm like, you don't know your drugs? I'm thinking, isn't that kind of basic?

So we went over again why I couldn't take doxycycline. And then she went back to saying how she didn't think I needed antibiotics, that she thought it was a stomach issue and I said I'd already been down that route and been cleared, there is nothing wrong with my stomach . I'd also already been down the lung route. It isn't that. My lung capacity is fine.

I reiterated what worked and she finally agreed to give me that drug, but only half of the amount I needed. And only after a lecture of how it is bad to take antibiotics when you don't need them, not just for you, but for the whole community. I was so close to flipping her off because of her condescension.

My voice got very deadly at that point and I told her that as an organic farmer I probably knew far more than she did about the abuse of antibiotics and I also knew my own body. I knew what worked and what did not work, and what I needed to beat this thing. I went on to inform her that not treating something long enough with antibiotics was even worse, because of how it only killed the weak versions of the bacteria and allowed the powerful ones to thrive and that that was exactly what she would be doing by not prescribing the medication for long enough. It happens this way every single time, regardless of whether she wants to think it can or not.

Her response was if you are still sick after finishing this course of medicine you can come back. I said I've already been here twice and paid for an x-ray. I can't afford to go to the doctor 3 times in 5 weeks, because you don't want to prescribe the proper amount of medication the first time. I also told her I was tired of doctors who refused to actually listen to patients, who had a lifetime of experience with their own bodies.

She said I needed to see my own doctor from now on then, because seeing all the different on call doctors when I was sick made it difficult on them to diagnose me since they didn't know my history. I said I'd tried, but they scheduling people had screwed that up and I had just told her my history, twice, but she wasn't listening.

They had screwed it up, too. I had an appointment scheduled with my doctor. I even had the card with me and showed it to them, but apparently he wasn't in today and they don't make appointments for one in the afternoon as that is the lunch hour there. But it was clear as day on the card. She told me he had on call slots available for tomorrow. I said then I'd have to pay another co-pay tomorrow. And anyway, the front desk had said it would be a week before I could see him, which was the only reason I'd agreed to see her, so I highly doubted it. I checked on the way out. He did not.

I'm going to write a letter to the practice tomorrow after I've had time to cool off a bit detailing my experience with this awful woman. Then I'll sit on it for 48 hours and then edit it to make sure I'm being polite. I'm thinking about finding another practice altogether, because this is not the first on call doctor to act like this, although this is the worst case of it. I don't like my own doctor well enough to put up with this kind of crap from the on call doctors. I don't dislike him, but I have no loyalty. I do think he deserves to know why if I decide to leave, though. Maybe it is time to see a naturalpath.

Edited to add: Went to get the prescription later and she'd prescribed something else. But the pharmacist won't let me have it, because it interacts with a different medication I'm on and the two together could cause heart problems. Which, you know, I could have told her if she'd flipping told me what she was going to do. That's two medications she knew squat about. Unprofessional piece of work.