Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Crock pot saga

Ever get to the point when you know you’re beating yourself up over something – and it’s such a minor thing that you KNOW you should not?

Monday evening I took a roast out of the freezer and placed it into the fridge to thaw. Tuesday evening I took it out to cook. I heated up some Olive Oil in a pan and seared all four sides of the roast (Ron likes the outside browned and seared; says you can’t get this in the crock pot). Added my seasonings and let it cook a bit longer. Took the meat and oil from the frying pan and placed it into a large stock pot. I covered this with water and chicken broth, and added some more seasonings. I let this boil for about an hour and then put the whole thing into the crock pot.

You’d think that would be the end of this story – right? Nope, this is just where the story really begins.

My crock pot is old and the knob is broken off. I have to use a pair of pliers to turn it off and on and I have to count the number of clicks between the off and highest setting to know where the temperature is set. Someone – not mentioning any names because it was probably me – didn’t turn the pot off after the last use so when I plugged it in, it heated up. I wasn’t ready for it to heat up at that point; I was merely getting it ready to receive the goods. I couldn’t find a pair of pliers so I unplugged the cord. (Can you see where this is leading?)

Once I was ready for the roast and the now wonderful smelling stock, I poured it all into the crock pot and went in search of something to turn what is left of the knob back on. I finally found something that would work as good as my pliers had and turned the pot back on. By now, it’s bedtime so I turned out the lights and went to bed. At about 11:00 pm I thought I should probably get up and check the roast but then decided that I knew it had enough water on it and I’d not turned it to high, so it should cook without any problems all night.

Since we close our door at night, and I slept really soundly last night, I didn’t realize it wasn’t cooking until this morning. I started to add the potatoes and carrots and realized the stock still looked the same as last night. Touched the lid and realized I had forgotten to plug the darn pot back in. It’s no one’s fault but my own and I beat myself up over things way more than I beat other people over things. It wasn’t that expensive in the grand scheme of things (I had gotten it on sale for $6 – about ½ price) but totally messed up my plans for dinner to be done when I got home. Ron has praise team practice tonight and I knew I'd be late getting home, so dinner “done” would have been nice. Jenny is going to fix something but instead of a $6 plus veggies dinner, it will be a $12 plus veggies dinner. Ugh!

I was so upset over that darn roast that I was pretty much in tears over it. Hmmm… probably not really the roast that’s the problem. Maybe it’s everything else and then the roast was the finishing straw.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

He cried

Ron was so funny when I went into the bedroom to tell him he had a gift. The card says "Congratulations! You were selected as WICHITA'S SPECIAL VALENTINE! You can view the entry at" He kept saying, "How did I enter a contest? Did you enter a contest? How did I win something? You didn't buy me flowers, did you?"

I kept telling him that he just needed to come into the dining room and I'd explain it. When he saw the flowers he again asked if I'd ordered him flowers. No, he won them. How???? Just be quiet and listen.

As I was reading the remarks the tears just started rolling down his face. He was so touched by all of the nice words that people wrote. There were even some comments from people he doesn't know. It was very nice.

The arrangement is beautiful. The house is beginning to look like a florist's shop since I got roses, Amy got roses, Jenny got roses, and Ron got his "Passion" bouquet. Very nice.

Friday, February 13, 2009

He won...

Ron was picked as the winner as the "Special" Valentine by Tillie's Flower Shop. They will deliver his flowers tomorrow and I've been dying to tell him. In fact, I've almost blown it a couple of times.

Ron will win a Passion bouquet valued at $79.95 from Tillie's. I'm sure they will be beautiful. I took all of the comments and created a PDF so I can print them out for him.

He sent me roses today - which is a big "WOW" for us because we just don't do roses. Amy found these on and they're a "create your own" package. They have Mickey Mouse on some of them and I Love You on others. They are very nice and such a different sort of idea.

When I got the email from the receptionist today that I had flowers, I went up to the front to get them. The front counter had several arrangements there so I asked which ones were mine. She said, "I want to see your flowers." I said (sounding confused), "OK, which ones are they?" She said mine were around the corner and all I could think was how big of an item could this possibly be???
They were in a big box, which is something I've never gotten before anyway. Once I saw where they came from I knew Amy must have had a hand in it. I had several people standing there to help me open them up and find something to put them in. They are really very, very pretty.

April had a vase so I was able to bring them home and leave the box at work. I trimmed the stems and added the plant food to the water. I hope they last several days.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

My Wichita Valentine

I've entered Ron in a "My Special Wichita Valentine" contest through a local radio station and flower shop. Up until tonight, he was ahead in his category. There were several categories and one person who didn't win in one category moved his entry to Ron's category. That doesn't seem quite fair, unless the votes stayed behind in the other category.

Many of Ron's friends have voted and a few have even left comments. You can go to this link to read - or even vote if you do it before tomorrow. The contest ends tomorrow but I'm at a loss as to know when they will declare a winner and how they will notify the winner. It's very strange.

To vote, click on the pink heart just above his head. If you leave a comment, it won't show up right away as it has to go through moderation.

I'm going to print off all of the comments and if he doesn't win, I'll get him a bouquet myself. The person who is closest to him is deserving of something, but (LOL) not any more so than Ron. I hope the late voters come through and keep him in the lead.

Doctor update, medical expenses, and taxes

We had another trip to the foot doctor today. Dr. Heady came in and almost danced a jig he was so happy. He said that he was very pleased with how the foot was looking and excited that it was getting to where it needed to be. The nurse came in and said when the doctor left the room he even told her how happy he was about it. We don't go back for a whole month!

Knock on wood... Our medical expenses should go down this year. Of course, I'll be paying on our KCI bill for quite a while so who knows what our "actual" expenses will be and what our carryover expenses are.

I got our 2008 pharmacy record. Ron's pharmacy record - at only ONE pharmacy - was $21,651.98 for insurance and $1,720.30 for us. My prescriptions cost $2,916.79 for insurance and $807.25 for us. So far this year, Ron's prescriptions have cost $2,728.04 for insurance and $180.00 for us. Mine are $328.07 for insurance and $90.41 for us. Those records are from 1/2/09 through 2/3/09.

Our out-of-pocket medical expenses last year amounted to $9,886 ($784 for transportation credit, which leaves $9,102 of actual expenses). Add the approximately $9,000 I lost in wages from being off work without pay, and we lost a whole "salary." It's no wonder I was pulling my hair out trying to figure out how to pay things. Without my faith, I would not have made it and we would not have made it. Every week, and sometimes many times a week, I'd be in prayer over our finances and Ron's health. God saw us through it all.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

You're from Kansas, eh?

"So, do you live on a farm? Do you have cows and chickens?"

Those are real questions I received last week when I was in WA to get Jenny and Alexander. One of her neighbors is from Norfolk, VA and is currently working in WA for the Navy. He seemed to think that because I live in Kansas that I've probably got cows and chickens and live on a farm.

I didn't think of it until later, but I wish I'd said that no, I don't have chickens but I did have three children and sometimes that felt like I was being pecked to death by chickens.

I probably live in a bigger city than he does. I know Wichita is bigger than Norfolk.

I wonder if he'd be just as surprised to find out I have running water, too...

World viewers

It's awesome to see in the statistics that my blog has had viewers from many parts of the globe. There have been visitors from Croatia, Australia, French Guyane, United Kingdom, Ontario, New South Wles, and many, many states. I'd love to have any of you leave a comment (if you'd like - no problem if you would rather not).