Friday, February 29, 2008

Mr. Gout came calling......

Yesterday was not good. My gout condition, which I knew was coming on two days prior, hit me hard. I spent the day on the couch, except for trips to the restroom. Gout is a form of arthritis; in my case uric acid builds up on the skeletal bones of my right foot. When this happens it causes excruciating pain. It settled this time near the ankle. So as you might imagine, it makes walking very, very difficult. I have a cane, so I use it to try to get around. This has come about this time because I have not been consistent in taking the prescribed drug Allopurinol, which controls the buildup of the uric acid. Why have I not been taking the tablet every day?
Because six months ago, before being laid off, I got a three month supply. So I've been trying to "make it last." Obviously not a good idea. Please don't think I'm going for sympathy or something. Just explaining. I learned a lot about gout at this website: It's a great place.

It snowed a bit overnight. Ingrid fell trying to get into the van to go to work this morning. She told me by text message @ 7:50am, after she had gotten to work. She says she will tough it out. Well, so will I.

Thanks for dropping by, and keep your stick on the ice.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Happy me

Today is my 43rd birthday. Ingrid sent a greeting by text message. :-) She works from 7am-5pm today. As is the custom on Wednesday, I met with my pastor to select songs for the upcoming worship service on Sunday morning. I also watched the DVD movie "Unidentified" and later renewed my driver's license. Tonight Ingrid and I have Awana. What is Awana you might ask? A Bible based kid's club that our church has hosted for many years. If you would like to learn more you can visit their web site:

I got a very nice card and letter from my dearest friend in the world, Lisa. She and her family are doing well. Her husband is a great guy, and the kids are growing so fast. We've been friends for over 25 years. I am so blessed.

Keep your stick on the ice.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Sickness in our house

We both have been sick. I missed Sunday services today because I have a cold and severe congestion, which has caused me to sleep in the recliner the past 3 nights. Had another interview this past Thursday for a hospital food service position. It's frustrating; I have good interviews, the people are nice, but they hire someone else.

Someone I know has a birthday this week.....(wink)

Keep your stick on the ice.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Guitar Hero

Last night Ingrid and I went to an "after Valentine's Day" party thrown by our friends the Onstotts. Late in the evening, the guys got out Guitar Hero. It was my first time to play this game. Makes me want to learn to play guitar. I kinda look like a rock star, yes?

Weeeelllllll, maybe not.

More later. Thanks for dropping by, and keep your stick on the ice.

Friday, February 15, 2008


Ingrid had a second interview for the hospital today. And the agency she works for had quite a time getting her schedule for the next few days straight. I think they've got it now.

I got a call today from a place where I turned down a position last year, before the plant closed, because they wanted me to work third shift. This new position would be on second shift (3pm-11pm). I can deal with that a lot better than overnights.

Tonight is the Valentine's Party at our church. It's nice to get together with everyone. This year I'm not the romantic devil I should be. Oh well.

Thanks for reading , and keep your stick on the ice.

Monday, February 11, 2008


Yesterday when we left for church, it was four(!) degrees and the wind blowing at 40 mph. It's still cold, although the high was around 17 today. Ingrid and I both had job interviews, she with a local hospital about a health care tech (CNA) opening, and me with a local long-term care facility about a food service opening. I was told that I would hear something in about a week, while Ingrid is scheduled for a second interview this Friday. If we were to both get these jobs, it would be a steady source of income which is needed right now. I've been unemployed for nearly six months, and I need to get back into the market. I have had interviews during that time, but none resulting in any offers. I hope and pray that at least one of us will find favor in the eyes of these prospective employers.

Something funny almost happened last night. Our church's evening service begins @ 6 pm. At 5:35, I develop the hiccups. I began laughing about it.....but they didn't go away. Ingrid got a big kick out of it........but they didn't go away. I left the house, knowing that I was to lead the singing at church. Sometime during the trip, the hiccups went away. I was glad.

Stay warm.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Ah, the weekend.

Saturday. The weekend. For those who work during the week, a time to relax and unwind. Or get those things done that you didn't have time for M-F.

Ingrid and I both have job interviews scheduled for Monday morning. She is interviewing for a health care tech (CNA) position in the surgical department at Covenant hospital in Urbana. I am going in for a food services position at Carle Arbours, a facility for senior citizens in Savoy, south of Champaign. These would be good steady positions for us, and we need that right now. I heard back from Midwest Portraits, and the man said he had made his choice, but that if the choices didn't work out, he would give me a call. We'll see.

Ingrid was supposed to have last night off, but they called her into work. She was not happy. It was a rough rest of the day. She is on her way home at this writing. Before coming into the house, she will go next door to help her mother. Yesterday was not a good day for Ursula. It's up and down for her on a daily basis. Ingrid is working third shift in order to be available for Ursula. I fear that the schedule will wear Ingrid down. I pray that doesn't happen.

Have a great day and weekend.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Elections, floods and.....snow?

The primary election went well from my perspective. We were assigned 5 judges, but one was sick and did not come. It made it interesting, but we made it through. Turnout in our precinct was, as usual, low for a primary, but voters came in at a steady pace, which made the day go by fairly quickly. My feet and legs were very sore when I got home, and my legs are still tired as I post this. Overall, a good experience.

The 11 inches of snow melted off over the past two days, and we got a day-long rain storm which caused flash flooding all over the county. In driving to Urbana to return the election supplies, I saw a trailer park where the water rose to the bottom edges of the trailer doors. One car was over half submerged. Several viaducts in Urbana and Champaign were flooded with well over five feet of water.

Now, the forecast is calling for 1 to 3 inches of new snow.

Where's that number for reservations to San Diego?

More later.

Monday, February 4, 2008

In a Fog

Today was crazy. Just crazy. A very thick fog moved in late last night, and stayed around all day. I mean, ALL day. Visibility less than 50 feet. And guess what? I drove 22 miles to Mahomet, in the fog, not being able to see more than one car length ahead of me.

Had the interview with Midwest Portraits. The owner is looking for people to cover a certain area setting up meetings with those service groups looking for fund raising ideas. It would certainly be a different career than working in a factory. I should know by sometime Wednesday.

Tomorrow, Feb. 5, is primary election day. I serve as a Champaign County election judge. My time begins at around 5:30am, with the polls opening at 6am and remaining open until 7pm. It's a long day, but I don't mind. I see it as doing my civic duty.
So, my next post will hopefully be sometime Wednesday.

Ursula, my mother in law, went to see her cancer doctor today. It was decided to begin chemo treatments today as well. Her condition remains the same, although she did have some chicken noodle soup today. So that's a hopeful sign.

If you are registered, VOTE! It's your right, and your responsibility.

More later.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

I heart the internet for job-hunting!

As a result of my adventures yesterday emailing my resume to different prospective employers, I got a call just after 8 this morning from Midwest Portraits Co. in Mahomet IL, asking me to come in for an interview Monday @ 1:15pm. Yay! This company is wanting to fill a position of contacting churches to sell pictorial directories and fire department fund raisers. It says it's a $25,000 base + Commission + Bonus. So let's see what happens there.

On Tuesday I will be serving as an election judge for the primary elections. Our county has recently implemented optical-scan technology; before that we had punch cards. (Can you say 'hanging chads?') The new way is better because not only are the votes counted as ballots are placed in the ballot box, but there is indeed a paper trail. The ballots are "darken the oval" in scope. You take your ballot, and a pen, and fill in the oval next to the person you wish to vote for. Then the ballot is inserted into the counter, the vote is counted and recorded on a memory chip, and the paper is dropped into a secure metal box. I firmly believe this method is superior to not only punch cards, but also to touch screen voting machines which do not leave a paper trail. Just my feeling about it.

More later.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Digging Out, Looking for Work, and a Golf Story

I was up @ 6:30am digging out the driveway from an eleven inch snowfall. I would have posted a pic, but I still need to learn how to download from the digital camera, and then post. I'm sure my wife can show me how.

I got a lot done, considering the outside conditions. The local unemployment office (in Champaign, 17 miles south of Rantoul; GO ILLINI!) had scheduled a Job Fair, with prospective employers there to take applications and such. Well, Ingrid and I got there just after 1 PM to find that the fair was cancelled, because of the weather. Imagine that. So one of the counselors told me about a new online place to look for jobs. Let's just say the new one doesn't work any better than the first one they showed me. But I got a lead on a position in nearby Mahomet. Using, I posted my resume and not only applied for that position, but FIVE other jobs I thought I might be a fit for. Yet the state-sponsored websites could not match me with even ONE job! So my reply to the state websites:


Otherwise, how are things? My mother in law, Ursula, is still very weak and unable to each much. A visiting nurse tried for one hour this morning to draw blood, but could not. Even though she is home, she is still very sick.

Today's Quote from the Stupidest Things Ever Said Calendar:
"We have to belly up to the buzz saw, and I think we're reaping the whirlwind from it." -Tennessee Senator Jim Sasser


Oh, a story heard on Paul Harvey today:

The average golfer walks 900 miles a year on the course.
The average golfer drinks 22 gallons of alcohol a year.
It was computed that based on this information, the average golfer
gets 41 miles to the gallon.