Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Tastes like chicken.

Yep, unlike most people my internet surfing does not inevitably lead to porn (not most days anyway!), it leads to food. 
Tonight's dinner is going to be cranberry orange chicken in the crock pot.
I altered the spice combo a bit, made my own cranberry sauce out of dried cranberries (leftover from Brian 's cranberry rolls recipe from Thanksgiving) used fresh squeezed orange juice and added some orange zest.  Those of you who know me know that recipes are more like guidelines instead of rules, and that I usually can't exactly replicate a recipe because I don't write anything down or follow directions. 
Let's just say that a lot of things I cook are a bit experimental.  Making the cranberry sauce, for instance.  I've never done that, and didn't even look for a recipe... I just did it.  I wasn't sure it would do what I wanted it to.  So far it tastes right and seems to be behaving the way I wanted.  Won't know for sure till it takes a turn through the immersion blender, but I have to wait for GFB to get up first. (The blender is a bit noisy)
And the chicken breasts came from Zaycon Foods, Internet purveyor of bulk meats. 
The chicken was the first meat we bought from them, and their reviews were mixed online, but we decided to take a chance.  The process wasn't exactly smooth, because of a supplier issue our pickup date was changed.  I think twice.  But the chicken we got was (is) great.  Not a ton of effort to process.  It came on large bags and we separated it into manageable family sized portions and vac sealed it for the freezer.  The breasts are HUGE!  2 breasts feeds our family of 3 adults, with leftovers.  And it tastes... Like chicken.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Projects and the "To Do List"

Holidays are always a busy time of year.  Wait... Who am I kidding, it's busy all year 'round.  Right now I'm struggling with a list of things I need to do, things I want to do, and things I actually have time for.  Unfortunately, there really aren't too many items that fall on all three lists. 

I really need to study for my National Certification exam.  This is a professional thing, that will net me a one time cash bonus, and look good on my annual evaluation, hopefully assisting me in getting the best annual step raise possible for my pay grade.  This is a must do kind of thing.  But.... BLEH.  I really hate studying and really haven't been able to just buckle down and do it.  I toyed with just singing up to take the test and paying the money, thus forcing myself to study, but was talked out of this plan in favor of studying a bit more first and maybe getting consistently higher scores on practice exams first.  Good in theory, but since the day we talked about that I've barely touched the book or study materials.  *sigh*

Last night at work, I ran into an issue with medication.  It was classified as "Chemo" even though it isn't really.  Problem is the policy for the facility where I work was very vague and unclear about wether or not I could hang this medication, as I'm not "Chemo Certified".  Problem is there wasn't really anyone else to do it, because very few people on the night shift are.  So now getting this certification back (I was certified by a different state in the past) is kind of a priority.  But like the above certification exam, it costs money to take the class that's required to sit for the exam.  I'm far from broke, but there are other things that hit my financial priority list at the moment. (fodder for another post)  But, again the flip side is that obtaining this certification will help me come evaluatio time for my annual raise. 

Then there's the fact that I need to ,want to, and ought to go back to school for my Bachelors degree.  And then possibly farther for my Masters degree.  Same argument for this.  Costs money, lack of time etc.  And flip side is also the same, potential for more future income. 

So why can't I make myself do these things?  Why do I never seem to have the time despite the fact that I only work 7 days out of 14?  Because I have other things to do.  Like sleep. Spend time with my Significant Others, clean the house, do the laundry, grocery shop, and the other various minutiae of life.  (Don't read this to mean that I do all these things alone.... I don't.)

I go to a piloxing class twice a week every other week as my work schedule allows.  I'd like to go more often, and go to the gym, or to a yoga class, or a spin class every once in a while, but with my night work schedule, it's kind of hard to do these things. Not all classes are offered every day, and frankly if it comes down to a choice of exercise class or sleep?  Sleep is going to win every damn time.  Not even a question. 

There's also a lot of organizing and decluttering to be done at home, related to a move in the next 6 months or so.  Mind you the majority of the stuff that needs decluttering and trashing isn't mine.  And I'm not going to nag to get it done.  But it still causes me stress. 

Then there's the whole reason we need to move thing.  We're buying a house.  Or at least we're trying to.  And we have a deadline.  Tick Tock, Tick Tock.  Nah, not stressful at all.  (This..... is sarcasm)

I want all of us to actually go out and do things.  Together.  Not always the easiest thing to do since two of us work the night shift , and the other gets up at the crack of  0'dark 30 to go to work , and goes to bed super early, exhausted nearly every weekday, and most weekends too.  Kind of doesn't really leave any time for pleasure outings.  It barely leaves time for necessities.  This is far from ideal, but I really don't see this changing in the immediate future, so It's just one of those things I have to live with even if its not what I want.

Does anyone know how to make clones?  I'd like one for Christmas, but unfortunately I can't find one on Amazon for my wish list. 

Shift work and the "Night Shifter Culture"

This is kind of a shout out to all those working the night shift.  It doesn't matter what profession you're in, Medicine, Nursing, Transportation, Emergency Services, Retail Services, or Food Service, or any other job that has a night shift, we night shifters are a special breed.

I happen to work in The medical field, as an RN.  I've worked the night shift for the better part of the last 10 years, and I can't imagine ever going back to the day shift permanently.  The culture of the night shift is markedly different from that of day shifters.  And it goes beyond the gerneralization of "sleep during the day, and awake while its dark".  The personalities and behavior of night shifters everywhere is different than peole who work days.  Over the years I've found that the "Night" people are more team oriented and cooperative.  I believe they're more "Us" and "team" oriented, whereas "Day" people are more "Me, myself and I".  This has been pervasive across several facilities in 2 states.  Two states that are 1100 miles apart.  I don't believe this is a fluke.  I'm sure someone has done research on this that I could Google. 

I think that the night shift is just more laid back, easy going and fun.  Granted, that may be because there is limited management looking over our shoulder, and there are just less people to give us a hassle in the middle of the night.  I also think that because there are less people to interact with on the night shift, that introverts are a drawn to it.  I (being a bit of an introvert myself) prefer the night shift because I feel less micromanaged, I enjoy my independence, and I have a severe lack of tolerance for stupidity.  I think the night shift is neater, and overall more thourough.  Perhaps that is because us introverts tend to be a bit on the OCD side as well? 

Sometimes being a night shifter is awkward.  We drink wine at 8am, and are still in our jammies at 2 pm on a good day, maybe till 5pm on a bad one.  Day people tend to judge us on these two traits.  And they call us in the middle of the afternoon, during our prime sleep time.  Really?  How'd you like it if I called you at 3am for something completely bullshit?  People leave for work and let their dogs out.  Because they're at work they don't hear them bark.  All. Day. Long..... Every. Single. Day.
If an entire neighborhood of dogs barked incessantly all night long, I'm pretty sure a lot of somebody's would have a problem with that. But because it happens during the day "it's not a big deal".  Any official business you need to partake in, like a doctors appointment, an auto repair appointment, picking up a prescription, taking your dog to the vet, calling your lawyer, going to the bank, etc.., need to be done during the day.  Very inconvenient for those of us who keep the world functioning by going to work at night.  But on the plus side, if you have a 24 hr grocery store, there's never a line at 3am!