Wednesday, May 27, 2009



I am a fat, disgusting pig.

I have no one to blame but myself for this weight. Well, and maybe bad genes, to a certain extent. Although nothing in my genes compelled me to order a big ol' plate o' nachos for dinner last night rather than opting for a healthier choice. (My not-fat husband ordered a chicken Caesar salad.)

I have my gym gear with me today and will be visiting the gym for the first time in about two weeks. So that's a start.

However, breakfast was a caffe mocha (non-fat, natch) and a mushroom piadini from Starbucks. Not so great a start in terms of food choice.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009



I haven't updated in a while--again--and quite a bit has been going on. I also would like to blog about the fact that the scale is gradually creeping up, up, up--I am now 7 pounds heavier than when I started Weight Watchers in 2003 and perilously close to 220--but I seem to be complacent about it. Well, actually I am repulsed by myself, but it hasn't spurred me to any action. I may have to wait until later in the week to blog about my self-loathing in more detail. . . . ;-)

Work has been busy! A case to which I am assigned was scheduled to go to trial on June 9, so the past two weeks, I have been spending 80-90% of my time working on various trial preparation stuff: indexing depositions, reviewing exhibits, drafting pre-trial motions, etc. We found out at 2:30 last Friday afternoon that an issue has come up (for the plaintiffs) that will prevent the trial from going forward as scheduled. I'm actually kind-of glad the trial is being continued because now I can focus on the deadlines I have in other cases, which are several: I have five projects due this week or on Monday of next.

But for Friday's development, I would have had to work several hours yesterday. As it was, I spent the entire day doing nothing productive. I didn't even do housework, laundry, or grocery shopping, though I needed to do all three! I did no work, and I didn't write the court report for my CASA case that is due before close of business today. Instead, I relaxed: I surfed the internet and played games; read two books; and watched three movies on TV (Divine Secrets of the YaYa Sisterhood, Napoleon Dynamite, and Idiocracy) and part of the Diamondbacks game. It was wonderful!

My dad and stepmom were visiting from Friday afternoon around 3:30until early Monday morning. We had a good visit with them. It was good to see them, and they seemed to enjoy themselves. My dad made the comment that MM "grows on you," which sort-of implies that he didn't like him before but now he does. I thought it was funny. (As for my stepmom, she seems to have liked MM at both of their prior meetings. . . . but she is inclined to be less critical than my father.)

The four of us went to my in-laws' for dinner on Sunday. All the parents seemed to get along well; it was the first time that my stepmom met my FIL, though she had met my MIL before and my dad had met both my MIL and FIL previously. Other than dinner at the Ms', we also went to a movie (Night at the Museum), to the farmers' market, and out to eat a few times, plus watched The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (good, but depressing).

I love my father; however, visits with him and stepmom can be a tad tricky, for a variety of reasons that are too complicated to discuss in this post. Suffice it to say that I count any visit as a success if (1) he and I don't get in an argument; (2) we don't talk about religion; and (3) nothing offends him or his wife. Check, check, and check.

Lots of developments on the Hunter front, too. Since my last post, the poor thing developed right-sided facial paralysis which now seems to be resolving. For two days, his right jowl was drooping, causing food and water to dribble out and lots of slobbering; he couldn't blink his right eye; and his right nostril doesn't flare. He can now blink and is less droopy but still doesn't have full sensation or movement. He has been at the vet's three times in the past eight days. The good news is that he had his right ear bandages removed today, and his ear is healing well. I'm extra glad that the bandages are off because they have rubbed raw spots on the skin of his throat and under his left (unoperated) ear (which will now require a twice-daily powder to treat). The vet is encouraged at the improvement in his facial paralysis, and he doesn't have to go back for two more weeks for removal of his ear stitches.

While I have been exceptionally busy at work for the past week plus, MM was also very busy last week and continues to be this week. (Funny how that works out.) We have both been pretty stressed out between both our jobs, taking the dog to the vet multiple times, and preparing for my parents' visit. We have nothing planned this week or weekend, and I think we are both glad!

I can't think of too much more that's going on. I still feel like I'd love to take a couple of days off to get caught up on "life," but I do feel more relaxed after having a lazy day yesterday.

Tonight is piano lesson and probably a trip to the grocery store to pick up some food; I have basically nothing to eat at home but a couple of frozen dinners for lunches, frozen edamame, and instant oatmeal. LOL

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Pitiful Hunter

First, let me say that Hunter's surgery and recovery went fine, and from a medical perspective, he is doing well. He came through his procedure OK.

MM picked Hunter up from the vet a little after 10:00 a.m. yesterday. He told me he looked pitiful, but I didn't really grasp how pitiful until I saw him for myself after 5:00 p.m.

When I arrived home yesterday, I saw that in addition to being obviously subdued and groggy and just not himself, he has a pressure dressing on his right ear that makes it stick straight out from his head. This pressure dressing is held in place by a bandage wrapped around his head. And topping all that off is a horrible "e collar." Well, to be fair, it's not horrible: it's clear, so he can still see things to the sides. But he keeps bumping it into things, and it makes eating and drinking tricky. (I took some photos of him to show just how pitiful he looked but have not gotten around to uploading them.)

Hunter spent most of yesterday evening sleeping. He seemed more himself this morning, though he still is obviously bothered by the e collar and the bandages. He is taking two different pain medications and an antibiotic for the next two weeks.

Hunter goes back to the vet on 5/27 for bandage removal and has to wear the e collar at all times when unattended until then. He also can't go outside without supervision, so the doggy door is blocked for both boys (and Sebastian is NOT happy about it).

Poor thing. I'm glad he came out of the surgery OK, though.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Hunter news

Seems like lately the only posts on this blog that garner more than one or two comments are the ones I write about the dogs. Maybe most of my readers have abandoned me. Given the sporadic posting and the mostly dull content, I wouldn't blame them. :-)

So it's a good thing I have something to report about one of the dogs. Hunter has recovered nicely from his kennel cough--without ever infecting Sebastian, despite constant interaction with him--and is settling into our home well. However, on Thursday evening (just before leaving to the Jimmy Buffett concert), I noticed that a lump on his right ear flap which the vet had told me to keep an eye on had grown larger, firmer, and painful.

To make a long story short, Hunter saw the vet Saturday morning and is back at the vet today to have surgery on an ear flap hematoma. Apparently these are common in Goldens and, if large like his, will not heal on their own without causing permanent deformity of the ear that can lead to chronic ear infections. They are often a result of the dog shaking his head or scratching at his ear due to infection, but curiously, Hunter's ear is not infected.

Poor Hunter. In addition to being a mistreated yard dog most of his life, in the span of a little over a month, he has been neutered, had kennel cough, and now this surgery. Rough life.

I should find out soon how the surgery went and whether he will be able to come home tonight. He will have a bandage around his head (like a Revolutionary War veteran) for a week and 25-30 stitches in his right ear for a total of three weeks.

Keep Hunter in your thoughts. I hope he does OK.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Educational anniversaries

A trivial tidbit about me: by sheer coincidence, I graduated from college (undergrad) and from law school on the same date, ten years apart. Today, May 14, is that date.

Today it has been 5 years since I graduated from law school and 15 years since graduating college.

I wonder where I'd be today and what I'd be doing had I never finished college. Aside from the obvious fact that I'd probably be much worse off financially, my life would be different in a lot other ways, too.

Had I never gone to law school, more likely than not, I would still be working as a nurse in some form or fashion. (Assuming I hadn't had a mental breakdown by now. LOL) It's also possible that I might have gone back to school for something else: before law school, I considered getting a PhD in psychology or a MBA, among other things. I also considered becoming a legal nurse consultant.

Had I never graduated from college, though, I never would have been a nurse in the first place. I never would have gone to law school. Considering the fact that I met a majority of my friends in adulthood through either my jobs or in law school, I wouldn't even have the same people in my life.

I'm not even sure that I would've met MM. I first moved to Arizona due to a nursing job; I stayed in Arizona to attend law school. I moved from Tucson back to Phoenix due to a legal job. Changing any small part of the chain of events could've led me down an entirely different path.

Interesting to contemplate. Sometimes I wish the technologies we see in sci-fi were true. It would be cool to have a way to see my "alternate realities."

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Wednesday already?

I have become a lazy blogger of late! It's certainly not because I have nothing I want to write. I had good intentions of writing a post about our weekend trip to San Antonio, complete with photos; I've just never gotten around to it. I've been exceptionally tired, and once I get home from work and the gym and eat dinner, take the dogs to the park, and give them some love, I don't seem to have time or energy left to do anything else before bed.

Lately it seems that no matter what time I go to bed, I wake up tired (and sometimes with a mild headache, too). I've actually gotten Starbucks caffe mochas twice in the past week or so simply because I *had* to be able to focus and concentrate at work and couldn't do it without some caffeine. I'm actually mildly concerned about this because I don't think there is any reason for me to be this tired all the time. I've been exercising 2-3 times a week; my eating has been about the same as ever (meaning a typical "American" diet, interspersed with stabs at eating more healthy, whole foods); I seem to be sleeping soundly and well; I have no more stress than usual going on; I even bought a new pillow that cradles my neck wonderfully. Hmmm.

I never went in for my annual physical in January, and I've been thinking that I should make an appointment for a physical and address this with my doctor. At a minimum, he will probably want to check my cholesterol and triglyceride levels, so I can probably ask him to check some other bloodwork at the same time to see if I am anemic or having thyroid issues or something.

Anyhoo. . . . before anyone gets ideas, let me be clear that there is absolutely NO chance that I am pregnant! So that's not what's making me tired. ;-)

I will save more detailed information about our trip to San Antonio for when I get around to writing that post complete with photos. Suffice it to say that we had a good, relaxing time.

The golden boys fared well in our absence. Hunter was apparently fearful of our dog sitter initially at her first visit but warmed up to her quickly once he realized that she knew his name and wanted to give him love. His kennel cough is nearly all cleared up, too: he only has the occasional hack now instead of that awful choking sound. Fortunately, Sebastian has never gotten sick, though I suppose we can't be certain that he won't for another few days, given the 5-14-day incubation period of kennel cough. We are optimistic, though, as it has been eleven days already since Hunter came to live with us and just over a week since he started showing kennel cough symptoms himself.

I booked our flights to DC for our fall vacation today. Otherwise it's just been work, work, work. My supervising partner has a case set for trial in less than a month, so that has been taking up a lot of time. It's a case to which I've been assigned from the beginning (about 19-20 months?). If the trial goes forward as scheduled on June 9, I will get to attend jury selection. . . . in Yuma. We shall see; the judge currently has a murder trial scheduled the previous week, so that may cause us to get bumped.

Getting back to it. . . .

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Quick notes

215.8 (whew!)

1. Reading In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto has inspired me to start eating healthier once again. I've been adding more whole foods to my diet. . . . mainly fruits & veggies. As a result (and having gone to the gym twice this week), my weight is down from a scary 218.4 on Monday.

2. For years Sebastian has positioned himself on the bathmat while I shower. Now when I get out of the shower in the mornings, here is the scene in the bathroom:

3. Hunter has kennel cough. Though we didn't know it until Monday, he was briefly exposed in his foster home and started coughing during the night on Tuesday/early Wednesday. Except for having the characteristic cough, he doesn't seem very sick: he's eating and has a normal energy level. but went to the vet and is now on antibiotics and a cough suppressant. So far, Sebastian is healthy, and though kennel cough is highly contagious, the vet said that some dogs never catch it even if exposed. We are optimistic that that will be the case with Sebastian.

4. Off to San Antonio tomorrow night. Saturday's forecast calls for a record high of 98. Ugh.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Weekend recap

In addition to bringing Hunter home, I had a very busy (and fun!) weekend.

Friday night MM and I drove down to Tucson to join K and several other friends for a performance at the Gaslight Theatre. I hadn't been to anything there since probably my first or second year of law school, and it was a lot of fun. MM doesn't even like live theater (and hates musicals), and he enjoyed it, too, to his surprise.

It was fun to see K and celebrate her birthday with her. We also enjoyed seeing the others friends there and chatting with friends L and M, who graciously allowed us to spend the night at their house so that we wouldn't have to drive back to Phoenix at 11:00 p.m.

Saturday morning, MM and I visited M at the home of her adoptive parents. Her adoption is not a "done deal" yet, but M is now spending every weekend with the Ls, from Friday night through Monday morning. She will continue with this routine for the next few weeks, until school ends for the year, at which time she will move in with the Ls full-time.

I was looking forward to meeting Mr. and Mrs. L. Everything I've heard about them is positive, and Mrs. L and I had talked on the phone, but it was nice to actually meet them face-to-face. M seemed content at their house and showed us around with great pride. She loves her bedroom--which has been specially painted with "fairy dust" and Tinkerbell and decorated with Hannah Montana posters she chose--and knows the names of all four dogs.

MM also had a favorable impression of the Ls, which means a lot to me because I consider him to be, in many ways, a better judge of people than I. He is slightly more cynical, and because of his job, is used to evaluating people's veracity and sincerity. Whether because of his job or otherwise, he is far more observant about other people than I and will often notice things that I will not, or at least will notice them sooner.

On our way home, we picked up Hunter in Tempe. As I have blogged about his first days in our home at length in another post, suffice it to say that Saturday afternoon and evening were mainly taken up with helping Hunter adjust to our home, save an hour or so to grab dinner at Red Robin.

Sunday morning, the dogs had me up by 6:30, and I could not go back to sleep (rare for me). Although I was tired, being awakened so early had the unintended consequence of allowing me to do the majority of my household chores before leaving for a bridal shower at 11:30. In fact, I got more down before 9:00 a.m. on Sunday than I often get done all day on Sundays!

The surprise bridal shower (interesting concept, right?) for a coworker took place at a local thoroughbred race track called Turf Paradise. I had never been there before and had quite a good time, despite losing all of the $12 I wagered. We were inside in the air conditioning--a must when the high temp is in the 90s--and had a yummy lunch while watching the racing.

After the shower, I was able to relax at home for a couple of hours with my latest read (In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto) before heading out to meet BFF KC for dinner. Sunday was KC's birthday, and I really wanted to celebrate with her! (She doesn't usually make a big deal out of her birthday, but I subscribe to a different philosophy on that issue.) We had a yummy dinner at one of her favorite restaurants, and then were in time to catch a showing of Ghosts of Girlfriends Past (we both love Matthew McConaughey).

While I was home relaxing and out to dinner, MM was out with his parents for an early Mothers Day dinner because we will be in San Antonio next Sunday. He returned home around the same time my movie started and took the boys to the park for their nightly exercise.

All in all, a great weekend.

Hunter is here!

Hunter is adjusting to life in our home. From the time we picked him up at around 1:30 on Saturday afternoon until he fell asleep long after midnight, he panted nearly non-stop and slobbered profusely. Sebastian is not a drooler, so I could see that MM was frankly disgusted by this. I figured the excessive slobbering and panting was just due to nerves, and I was right. By Saturday morning, both had subsided considerably.

Sebastian and Hunter played and wrestled constantly from the time they met in the park up to and past bedtime on Saturday night. They took turns humping one another, though to be fair, I will say that Sebastian started that. They would stop and rest for 2-3 minutes and then start playing again.

Both dogs awoke early on Sunday morning tired and much more subdued than the day before. I think they were worn out from Saturday! I didn't see them wrestling at all on Sunday.

Hunter has had only one "accident" in the house: he peed in the kitchen on Saturday afternoon. Once I caught him in the act and redirected him to the backyard with a "no," he has been using the doggy door faithfully and doing all his business outside. We have worked out feeding time. Hunter seems to be settling in (though he is still far more "alert" to our activities than Sebastian, who knows our routines).

Hunter is super sweet. He loves petting and seeks it out even more than Sebastian, something I didn't really think was possible. LOL

Hunter is just a smidge taller than Sebastian, but has a much more typical Golden Retriever body type: he has a broader head and chest, and though he is not overweight, probably outweighs Sebastian by 10-15 pounds. He reminds me of a big, cuddly teddy bear.

Unless he is sleeping soundly, Hunter follows Sebastian or me around all the time. He is a little wary of MM. We had been told that he seemed a little nervous around men, and it's true. We think that his previous owner, a man, likely yelled at him and perhaps even hit him. If MM makes what Hunter perceives to be a sudden move, Hunter will cringe and cower.

Hunter has also been startled by what we'd consider some normal household sounds, like the air conditioner kicking on. A baseball player on MM's 50-inch big screen TV took him by surprise and led to some investigation of the TV (including sniffing behind the set, which Sebastian does if he hears a cat on TV). He doesn't seem to like the vacuum--will walk away if it comes near him--but that's not uncommon.

We were told that Hunter likes to fetch tennis balls, and that's true, too. MM is very happy to finally have a retriever who fetches. He is more than willing to give Hunter time to overcome his nervousness of him, too.

Actually, MM has been trying to avoid petting the dogs too much because he doesn't want to aggravate his allergies. If MM's allergies get too bad, we won't be able to keep Hunter. But so far so good.

Here are a few photos of our new boy.

Here he is in our dining area on Sunday. What a sweet face!

Wrestling with Sebastian on his first day here

The boys while MM was on the internet and I was practicing the keyboard last night. The spare bedroom we use for our home office is small, but they both managed to find somewhere to lie down in there.

Wrestling this morning