Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Brief wedding notes

As can be plainly seen from the photo on the right, it was a beautiful wedding. I'm a bit prejudiced of course when thinking the bride (and all) were very beautiful, but others agreed. We headed out to a local beach after the ceremony and before the reception for a photo shoot and here the bride is captured with her the flower girls. A three and four year old to be as well behaved as they were was quite amazing. They came to the house to get ready with the 'big girls' and were still going strong at the reception so had a full day.

Everything went very smoothly on the wedding day and is captured in professional photos from hair and makeup in the morning, getting dressed even with the cats assistance at the house, interior and exterior poses and then shots of the men at the church and the ceremony itself. The receiving line afterwards and then off to the beach and in to the waterfront where the happy couple were persuaded for one of the shots to climb up into the big chair on Dock Street as you see on the left. Then a few shots outside of the Osprey Arts Center and then the reception. The meal was delicious, the wine worked out well, the speeches were good and we danced until closing with a good time had by all. And there are many FaceBook pics to prove it. The parents of the bride finally making it home by 1:30 a.m. and that by comparison was early. When the guests duffed in to clean up the venue we didn't argue.

The maid of honor and bridesmaid arrived home at 8:30 a.m. still wearing their dresses with messy makeup and hair and as the maid of honor stated "those dresses are comfortable but not for sleeping in" as they had crashed at the boyfriends house for a few hours. We fed a crowd of 45 brunch and there were some haggard looking faces partaking. Gifts were opened and then departures all around. I settled with the caterer that afternoon and it is all over but looking in the photo albums. More details when I'm more rested.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Two more sleeps until I have a son-in-law

Well, let me see if the last posting was on June 14th as difficult as it is to believe there have been 10 days which have passed in the blink of an eye. This is what happens when you're trying to get a daughter married off.

I did make it to the CTAS (triage) course in Annapolis and it was a good program. We only arrived 15 minutes early for the event and to quote the life partner "obviously you weren't driving" which of course was true. It's always good to exchange ideas with other nurses as well and find out we're not as badly off as some. We headed home with my chauffeur insisting that work was going to 'buy our supper' so we stopped for chinese food on the way making it 8:30 p.m. before I dragged my sorry carcass into the house. You can imagine that the next two LDs were a bit of a challenge to crawl out of bed for and it was good to have Friday to complete some of my tasks.

Finally got to visit with our first returning summer neighbour and had a nice low key supper with her - although it did score strawberry shortcakes for the shore captain in her honor. Always good to catch up on the news from over the past year.

Worked a LD on Saturday and had a student with me so was on my best behavior - which is always a strain - and rushed home to be the hostess for a bachelorette Fantasia Party for the bride to be. This was made more entertaining by the fact that it was a a surprise until the saleslady pulled up the door as I turned in the driveway and the father of the bride had to explain what the plan was! Add to this that 1/2 of the attendees were (I hesitate to describe ourselves as mature due to the behavior) but shall we say 'seasoned women' add some pink champagne and you get the picture. When I woke up the next morning I discovered I'd somehow sliced one of my toes, not sure how I did that but it must've been all that rolling around on the floor laughing. The only alarming situation was that the prodigal son's girlfriend who attended mentioned he had "gone fishing" and would be in by Friday morning - alarm bells rang!

The LN on Sunday was relatively painless as those go considering it was a weekend and all. I have to return to work on June 29th for a LN which leaves me on the other side of the doors for a week. I hesitate to say 'days off' with the pre-wedding pace here but away from work is very nice.

Monday and Tuesday were spent finishing up my tasks as assigned of completing the flower girls dresses, polishing the silver handles of the cake knife and lifter, getting the ceremony programs laid out, gift wrapping and getting some meals in the fridge for the gang.

Wednesday the shore captain made an early morning trip to the city to pick up the bride and maid of honor so they can begin on-site preparations. He then headed off to the NSLC to do the bottle-your-own wine thing and chose some white German (and French which wasn't as sweet) vintages. I did have to do an education session for fours hours last evening on obstetric emergencies in the emergency room but managed to print the wedding ceremony programs on the photocopier as it didn't show through like the inkjet printer. Took three different printers and many misfeeds to accomplish the project but they are done. The girls hit the spa for nail treatments and we rewarded ourselves with a brief Frenchy's shop afterwards. Rapping up the days activities was a wine labeling and and sealing event.

This morning the boy wonder arrived from his debut swordfish sticking trip a day earlier than expected as the marine forecast for tomorrow is not good and he had made a promise to his sister that he WOULD be in for the rehearsal on Friday evening. He has made his way out to connect with his sisters as they run errands and is expected for supper - don't want to push it by counting on that!

So as the father of the bride fishes lobsters out of the tank house for the chef to steam and crack this evening, drops by to pick up the wine to deliver to the reception venue and stops there to pay the facility deposit he hopefully connects with the barber for a much needed haircut. Into the home stretch now as it's only two more sleeps until we officially have a son-in-law.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Speed of light

Let's see....the last time I posted was Friday and today is Monday. Hmmm, feels like it's been much longer than that. Guess that's what happens when your life moves at light speed. At least my internet connection matches that! Wow, I am really enjoying having entered the 21st century and actually being able to do my online banking etc. All my fears of the shore captain having a meltdown when he saw the contraption on the side of the house were groundless as I made sure not to mention it but as I was leaving the house on Saturday p.m. for work he said "how do I get online, is there anything special you have to do?" So much for him being unobservant eh? He has selective unobservancy as well as selective hearing :)

The two night shifts were just fine and spent in good company. I managed somehow on the first night to fall over in one of the patient's rooms and bent my big toe backwards bruising it really badly and folding back the nail. I hit my elbow, both knees and my ankle when I pitched forward but mostly we were all hysterical as I wasn't seriously hurt and those kinds of situations are really funny at 6 a.m. Of course I had to make out an incident report and thought of everyone reading about the klutz so I suggested that furniture might have caused the problem. The toe settled with ibuprofen after I slept, but it is still purple. Good thing I wasn't planning to wear sandals for my M.O.B. gig.

Today was spent getting the boy wonder aka usher a suit for his sister's wedding. This was not accomplished easily as his father called from the plant just as we were attempting to get underway and requested that he go "cut five or six long poles for skids for the lobster car, put them on the trailer and drive them over" so as you might imagine that caused a great deal of yelling and gnashing of teeth before he did go do it. Of course by the time he returned it was almost noon so after showering we were on the road. We stopped to hit the sale on the waterproof camera I have been ogling for some time and what a beauty it is, small enough to put in your pocket on land and good to three meters under the water, lithium battery etc. We managed to find an acceptable suit in the mall and the clothing store had a 50% off sale so he is completely outfitted now with suit, shirt, tie, socks and belt. I just have to hem them. We stopped for groceries and I found a lovely $6 camera case there too as I told the lady in the store "I've been a good girl so it was a me present". She agreed that those are the best kind.

One of the flower girl's Dad has injured his leg playing hockey and had some orthopedic surgery to repair the damage. He's home from hospital and this means his 7 month pregnant wife will now have him and the 4 year old to manage for the wedding. They won't be doing any dancing from the sounds.

Looking forward to the first of the summer neighbours arriving sometime in the night. Not able to be much of a welcoming committee when I'm running away tomorrow but we will catch up on Friday when I'm not working (notice I didn't call it a day off?) I was discussing all the duties with the labor relations officer when she called about union business and asked about the wedding. I told her my M.O.B.tasks were 'and duties as assigned' which is standard job description language for anything the manager doesn't want to do. She said "that's what happens when you take on those positions that aren't unionized, the next thing is you'll be serving a grievance" Little NSNU humour there.

Well, time to hit the hay as the person I'm traveling with to Annapolis for the 9 a.m. triage course was firm that we must leave her place (30 minutes from here) at 6:30 a.m. tomorrow. This will place us at the latest an hour early. I shall take my (borrowed) book with me. I'm reading The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley and it is a great read - laugh out loud funny in places even.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Yippee high speed

A quick update from work but...for the first time in a long time it is not because I lack internet access at home because as of yesterday at 11:45 I have highspeed access courtesy of Eastlink. When the crew arrived there was a bit of discussion, the threat of not being able to install in a concrete house, it being too far to instill it on the utility pole up the driveway and the concern that it do external damage to the siding etc. I did my almost tearful best performance and the crew gave in. So I made an executive decision and the signal was measured and antenna with associated decision were promptly installed on the water side of the house and the router set up. I was able to access Facebook while baking the strawberry/rhubarb pie which I created to divert the attention away from the property damage I'd just authorized. And fortunately I left for work before the life partner/house constructor arrived home to notice. The main thing to remember is that 54 mb per second is an amazing rate of transfer so I have no problem defending my executive decision. I also got the desktop computer set up (after a call to CyberGeek) as well, so all is well.

I had the assistance of Kobo zendesk as well to download a free Martha Stewart cookbook and discovered that e-book readers also allow you to read PDF documents. While I was at it I got assistance to download a copy of Water for Elephants through Kobo and now that I have the processes documented on paper I won't have to bother the very helpful helpdesk.

Well, time to start the morning work so I'm off. Lots of updates to follow as now I have highspeed access.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Labour School Posting

As you read this I am at school….Labour School that is. When I told my coworkers I was going to learn how to argue and be assertive it provoked howls of laughter. No, no, collective agreements, negotiating and grievances are on the program. It’s a national conference at St. F. X in Antigonish with people and ideas from across Canada. Instead of a banquet there is a BBQ which is more my style as it is easier to pack jeans than dresses. I’m using two of my days off (good thing this is a 5 day off stretch) and have the LD on Wednesday granted. I’ll be back late Wednesday p.m. and back to work a LD on Thursday.

I am feeling sorry for having misled a friend as I had offered to drive her son and daughter-in-law back to the city on my way by on Sunday. This of course was because I thought the registration was then and classes began Monday morning. When I opened the binder Sun. morning I discovered that registration begins late Mon. afternoon with the opening session at 7 p.m. so no need to head up until after lunch. I felt like a big dope when I had to renege on my promise and more so as my friend was very gracious about the mix up. As the shore captain said “how did you manage to screw that up so completely?” This is what you get when you don’t check closely enough.
After I realized I didn’t have to get out on the road, the father of the bride and I spent the afternoon printing the labels for the wedding wine. And it went so well (not) that I used up ½ package of the labels just trying to get them centered. So one of my stops along the way tomorrow is for another package of them. I called the shop to see if there were any in stock and the clerk told me that folks either love or hate the commercial labels and that problems seem to be related to which software is used. Today I would count myself in the latter group as I muttered about MS Word for several hours this afternoon. Good thing we didn’t leave it any closer to the big day.

I have the flower girl dresses just about settled away and the new sewing machine is getting a workout. One is complete and awaiting a fitting this week, so I will connect with the bride-to-be on the way back through and leave it with her, the other is almost finished but I ran out of thread this evening so sourcing that is on the list as well. I dropped the flower girls baskets off at the florist on Saturday morning and they will fill them with silk flowers I think she said – artificial would certainly be a good choice with preschoolers.

Had a pretty good set of shifts last week and a good sleep in between my nights so a coworker and I got the idea to have breakfast after our last night and hit the town wide yard sale which was scheduled to begin at 8 a.m. We stopped at The Loyalist Inn - here is the website to check it out for yourself:

it's in town and has been renovated to look like a pub and now serves breakfast (beginning at 7 a.m.) and lunch. We had huge, delicious, reasonably priced breakfasts and then starting hitting the sales. I scored a dozen mugs (as the men in this house think they’re disposable) for under $4, a cake dish, two great pairs of shoes, three suitcases for $1 each and one for free, and the find of the day was dark blue patterned fabric to cover the cushions on the window seat in the living room for only $8 as well as some great stuff at the drugstore for 75 % off. Haven’t seen so many people in town since the last same event last year. We hung in until the forecasted rain drops began to fall and then I headed up to get some groceries. When I couldn’t find a parking place at the mall I called it quits as I didn’t have the stamina to elbow my way through the aisles and headed home for an afternoon of napping. There was not one pot or pan to be seen in the entire set of sales which I didn’t expect as last year there were lots. I will have to keep my eyes peeled on the road / Frenchy’s for the baby daughter as she ‘doesn’t like to brag but is becoming a pretty good cook’ and the room mate who is not returning is the one with the pots and pans.

I tried to sneak in last night and retrieve my ebook reader as the shore captain was snoring and I have to wait until he falls asleep to use it myself. He asked that I leave it home with him as he’s just getting into the classic novel he’s started. Might have to buy him one of his own if he keeps monopolizing this one.

As the appointment for high speed connection approaches I am counting down the days. Just think by Friday perhaps I won’t have to sit outside the library to post this blog eh? My one neighbour who has gotten hooked up claims the signal is excellent and he's about a km further away from the tower so all digits crossed.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Bridal shower report

A very productive and busy time off between my shifts – I hesitate to call these days ‘time off’ as I have to go back to work to get a rest but it was fun. And it is ever so good to not go back to work today when the remainder of those Monday to Friday folks have.

We are enjoying a glorious spring, one of the nicest weather wise that I can remember in decades. It is actually rather dry and doesn’t bode well for open fires or getting into the camp this summer if it continues but the sunshine and warm temperatures have been above average. We had our first barbequed burgers of the season last evening (other others with less workaholic spouses have likely been partaking for weeks) as the shore captain actually made it home by 6:30 p.m.

The last day of lobstering today and when I walked the dog this evening I was met by trailer and trucks loaded with wire traps which will be overhauled and stay on land until next November. There have been long days put in this past few weeks as the weather has been “finer than anyone can remember for years”. As the gear is landed and transported to various yards both the shore crew and those on the water are earning their wages. The prodigal son here opted (against the advice of his father or in spite of it) to go alone (as he has all spring) to land his traps declining the crew member his Dad had arranged. This of course means he will make everyone (not just himself) late today so the message to the employee on the wharf who had informed the shore captain on the cell was to “put the hired man aboard that boat for the next load when he comes in and if the boy gives you any lip give him a cuff upside the head”. Not sure what the outcome of that executive decision will be.

The first LN in my set of shifts last week with the new graduate I am orientating was actually rather sedate and she found her way around the unit, never having set foot in the doors before. When I asked how old she was and the reply was “21” which is the soon to be age of my baby daughter, I assured her I actually had been that age once and remembered how it felt the first shift. But the second night was a humdinger – even by this ‘old nurse’ standard and yet she didn’t miss a beat so I have a good feeling she’ll manage just fine. Our two new grads were off to graduate locally from the satellite campus on Friday, to the city on today and write their RN exams on Wednesday so I won’t catch up on the details until we work nights on Thursday again. Keeps you on your toes to have someone young and new with you and I’ve done my best to assure her that I value common sense and flexibility versus spouting back academic theories so we shall see.
The ‘days off’ were spent entertaining. After I came home from that last hectic night shift I napped for a couple of hours and was awakened by the cleaning lady who had graciously agreed to come on Friday although she had plans for the afternoon. So, after I excavated the boy wonders room for her to clean so adults could inhabit for an overnighter, hung some laundry and headed out for groceries, it was time to head home and make supper. The bride to be arrived shortly as they had met with the minister and reviewed the church details and now the situation is becoming more real. She had brought her father’s suit from the tailors and it looks very nice although we elected to NOT have it covered with cat hair so left it in the suit bag. We had a nice evening where she shared her teaching stories as she is substituting and is yet to miss a day since getting her name on the list so has experience from grade primary to five, phys ed and both English and French – all of which will look great on a resume when the jobs are posted.

On Saturday morning we prepared for the bridal shower. This meant I made 20 lb. of lobsters into four and a half loaves of lobster sandwiches while the daughter took the dog for a run then headed out to pick up her aunt as her ride had disappeared. A friend appeared to transport me to the shower and our friends from the city arrived from the city – she to go with us to the shower, he to hang out with the shore captain – and we were off. There was a crowd of over 40 including the groom’s family from the city, wonderful gifts as you can see on the right, and great food with as good a time as you can have at a bridal shower. I managed to get a tear for the gift (which was suggested by the very creative maid of honor) of a frame with a wedding photo of my parents, the shore captain and I on our wedding day and a spot for their picture. The bride to be was thrilled and we were all most appreciative that the groom’s stepmother likes to do things up in style. We arrived home in time to have lobsters and potato salad with our friends, the bride to be and the boy captain who had caught the crustaceans for supper. The two old guys turned in early and my friend and I were an appreciative audience for the bride to be as she checked out her gifts. In the morning those old guys headed down to the Fireman’s breakfast and we ladies treated ourselves to lobster scrambled eggs. We managed to get the favors for the wedding and the ceremony program blocked out before our friend loaded the car for the bride to be and she headed off to tutor in the afternoon. As I waved goodbye first to our friends, then daughter # 2 and enjoyed the alone time while I stripped beds, did laundry, loaded the dishwasher – all those hostess things – I was glad to not be heading in to work on the Monday.

I had a nice visit from a coworker and her partner today as they bought 20 lbs of lobster from the shore captain and came out to see the house. We sat in the veranda room until it became apparent that her cat allergies were causing the rash on her arm touching the wicker sofa, so I gave her an allergy pill and they headed off. I made my way to the deck to read the newspaper in the sun, had a little nap where I dreamed I was in St. Tropez but came back to reality and transplanted the pansies I bought at Superstore into the tubs on my front steps. Pansies are tough enough to not have to be babied on those frost warning nights.

My to-do list for the wedding is slowly getting whittled down and I have one flower girl dress to put together, the brother aka usher to be fitted for a suit and some smaller details left. At least the course I’m apparently (according to a phone call from a coworker today) attending in a couple of weeks does not require preparation as it is a one day course about triage. I’m pleased to be able to access it as it is one more thing on my tick list should I decide to run away from home and work elsewhere for a few months. Keeping my options open.

I almost forgot to mention that I called Eastlink last week regarding wireless and…I have an appointment for June11th for a technician to visit, measure the signal and hopefully hook up to high speed. Apparently there are three other things they can try if you aren’t able to get the signal on the first try. The painful part is that the hookup fee is $99 and the monthly costs are $46 so with tax you have to hand over a cheque for $`166 to the tech for installation and first month payment. It is a rip off, but sure beats sitting on the library steps. The ironic part of this story is that the newspaper on the weekend carried a business story where the CEO or owner or some such suit was complaining that Aliant (Bell) was getting money from the government to hook up high speed. Now, if that isn’t the pot calling the kettle black…I feel a letter to the editor coming on, the only problem is that I will have to email it from work BECAUSE Eastlink took lots of taxpayer dollars and has yet to give us high speed. My nerves.