Five Things Friday: 10/19/18 Edition

Hi, friends! Happy Friday!

It’s funny how more often than not, my work life balances out my personal life. All week long, I’ve been in fairly excruciating pain from a toothache, and work has been cooperating by not driving me crazy for once. I had a dentist appointment on Monday, and he told me it’s deeply infected around the nerve (hence all the pain), and due to the location of the cavity (on the side, between teeth), he can’t fix it. So I need to have my upper right molar removed, and evaluated for an implant. Not fun. But in the meantime, the main problem is the infection, and I’ve been on antibiotics since Monday. It’s now Friday and the pain is still killing me, but at least I was able to sleep the full night last night, for the first time in over a week. I guess that’s progress.

Speaking of progress, I needed to get fitted for new fire pants at drill last night because mine are getting a bit too big (see pic above). That’s the best problem ever to have, short of (ha) gaining a few inches in height. πŸ™‚ So I snagged a new-to-me pair that’s actually much nicer and newer than my old pair and now my pants aren’t sagging like a dirty diaper. Hooray!

(If you’re wondering, yes, that is a soccer ball and I was indeed playing soccer against the fire hall wall in my bunker gear. It was cold, y’all!)

  1. Currently Reading: Still nothing. I have been on a weird cleaning streak, though. Today I made a list of a bunch of things to do in and out of the house. It’s a considerable list, so I’m not sure everything will get finished. But I’ve already done a lot over the past couple days, and that’s helping to tire me out in lieu of reading. Someday soon I’ll find a book that catches my eye and I won’t be able to put it down, but I’m enjoying the cleaning spree for now.
  2. Currently Eating: I still have leftovers from Sunday’s October Thanksgiving at my parents’ house, so I’ve been in a turkey/mashed potatoes/gravy coma for much of the past week. The soft foods have been helpful with the toothache.

    I don’t have anything planned for dinner tonight or for the rest of the weekend, though, so I might need to do some planning in the midst of all my cleaning. If nothing else, I need to make something to take for lunch at fire school tomorrow.

  3. Currently Watching: I’m still watching Bojack Horseman (on season 2 now!), and I’m still on an Iron Fist hiatus. But my favorite thing I’ve been watching so far is season 4 of Schitt’s Creek. There’s something about that show that just makes me laugh and laugh, irreverent as it is.

    I’ve had a recent “craving” to watch The League again, but I can’t find it on Netflix or Amazon Prime. Anyone know if it’s available for free online somewhere?

  4. Currently Loving: I got to hang with the pupperonis on Sunday, and M got to meet them (he also got to meet my grandmas). Everyone had a good time, and the pups loved him. They were exhausted for days after we left!

    I finally had the opportunity to meet M’s family, as we had dinner with his parents and sisters on Wednesday night at Gaucho. I wasn’t sure how it went (between the blinding tooth pain, the exhaustion from not sleeping in days, and the nerves of meeting his parents, I was in a bit of a daze), but I got a text the next day that they loved me, so I guess it went well!

    Several people have offered to take me to my tooth extraction appointment on Wednesday, which is super nice. I hate asking people to do things for me, especially if it involves them driving into Oakland, parking, waiting for me, and/or taking off from work, but I appreciate that so many people have offered. Last night at the fire dept, a bunch of the guys said that if I ever need a ride to something like that, to let any one of them know… it’s like I have a whole new extended family. Nice guys, those firefighters. πŸ™‚

  5. Currently Anticipating: Getting rid of this tooth pain, for one thing.
    1. Tonight I have a bunch of errands to run. Aside from yard work and prepping for fall/winter outside, I need to go to Costco to pick up prescriptions, Walmart to buy more breakfast supplies, the fire department to prep my gear in the squad vehicle for tomorrow morning, and Goodwill (if I have time) to see if I can find clothes appropriate for our live burn days at school. For the live burns, we can’t wear any Under Armor-style gear; nothing with elastic, etc… which rules out almost all of my clothing. Oof.
    2. Tomorrow I have to leave for school at 7am and likely won’t return home until after 6pm (Saturdays are EXHAUSTING).
    3. Tomorrow evening I’m planning on hanging out with M and his son.
    4. Sunday I tentatively have nothing planned, but I have a feeling that will change.
    5. Monday I have volleyball.
    6. Tuesday is a free night, but I’m sure I’ll be with either M or a friend.
    7. Wednesday is my tooth extraction day. On the plus side, no work for me that day!
    8. Thursday is drill night with the fire department (pending how I feel after the extraction).
    9. Then it’s Friday again!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Five Things [Saturday]: 10/13/18 Edition

Hey there!

Whoops, it’s not Friday. I skipped not only last week, but this Friday’s post as well. Though to be honest, this week’s post was skipped mostly by accident; I’d meant to post, but then I made myself go to bed because of school in the morning and, well, oopsie-daisy. But otherwise, nothing all that awesome has been happening lately, and I’ve fallen into another funk of sorts, so it was hard to motivate myself to post anything on the internet. Not that things are less funk-like right now, but I do need a distraction, so here we go!

  1. Currently Reading: Absolutely nothing. I’ve snagged a couple Kindle books from the library, but I’m just not in the mood to get into them these days. Instead, I’ve been spending my downtime studying for fire school, doing crossword puzzles online, and browsing Reddit. I’m okay with all of that for now.
  2. Currently Eating: Lots of leftovers, still. I’m really good at cooking once a week and then eating leftovers for the rest of the week. This week I grilled turkey burgers, “baked” a bunch of sweet potatoes in the pressure cooker, and roasted a big batch of veggies. That all, combined with a crustless quiche for breakfasts and leftovers from work lunches, has comprised my diet for most of the week. I’m really terribly jonesing for a pizza, but I’m heading to my parents’ house for October Thanksgiving tomorrow (not a real thing to anyone but us), so I know I’ll have some awesome leftovers from that… and my fridge is only so big. Sigh. Maybe I’ll get around to having pizza someday next week.
  3. Currently Watching: I started watching Bojack Horseman on the advice of several friends, and I’m not sure I’m totally into it just yet. I thought it would be more along the lines of Archer’s humor, but it’s not. I don’t really know how to explain it. But the episodes are short, so I’ll probably continue watching.

    I took a temporary hiatus of Iron Fist season 2 so I could start watching Bojack, so I still have over half of the [apparently final] season to finish up.

    I’ve also been trying to watch more movies online. This weekend so far, I’ve watched The Great Outdoors,Β Lady Bird,Β and I’ve just started watching The Big Sick. So far, I think I like The Big Sick the best out of all of them, just because I think Kumail Nanjiani is adorable.

  4. Currently Loving: I’m still loving fire school, but getting up to go this morning was rough. When I last posted, I was nervous about our impending mod 2 exam. Well, I ended up breezing through it and passed with no issues, so that was good. Now we’re in mod 3, which is Exterior Firefighting, and it’s a bit more physical. “Physical” doesn’t necessarily mean “bad;” it’s just tiring. We got to play with fire for the first time today, and I put out two fires on my own (just with extinguishers). But I’ve been battling a toothache for the past few days (ugh, this again, despite my near-religious brushing and flossing the past few months) and I haven’t been sleeping. The not sleeping thing led me to take a bunch of different things last night to try to get to sleep, which partially worked, but which also made me extra-super tired this morning when I had to wake up early for class… especially since it was still pitch black outside. So when our instructor said that the last hour or so of class was practicing something I already have a handle on, I mentioned the toothache and he told me I could leave early. On my way out, someone asked if my excuse to get out of class was “special monthly ladytime,” which was the first time any of the guys has said anything even remotely condescending to me. I don’t know if it’s because we’re down to only me and one other girl in the class now (there used to be way more girls), or maybe it’s because our class in total shrank considerably between mod 2 and mod 3… but I guess we’re all getting a lot more comfortable with each other. (It’s fine; the guy who said it did so sheepishly, and he’s always been a really cool dude. No issues with him; he apologized as soon as he said it.)

    In other fire news, we did a sort of obstacle course for drill this week and I got to drive our Attack vehicle. I parallel parked it, “serpentined” through cones, and then serpentined in reverse through cones… and I didn’t hit a single cone the entire time! Woohoo! Considering I’m used to driving a Mini Cooper, this was an accomplishment.

  5. Currently Anticipating: There are a few things happening this week.
    1. Tonight I’m taking a whole lotta Tylenol and going to try to really sleep. This tooth, man. It hurts. I left a voicemail for my dentist today while I was on a break at school, so I’m hoping he can fit me in early in the week. The problem is my furthest-back molar, so at least if it needs to be extracted, I won’t have to deal with getting another implant. (Fingers crossed it’s just a cavity, but it neither looks nor feels like one… yeah, if it even looks terrible, that’s probably not a great sign.)
    2. Tomorrow I’m heading home to play with the pups and to have October Thanksgiving. M is going to be joining us as well, which might be his opportunity to meet the grandmas. (He met the parents at a fire department spaghetti fundraiser in September.)
    3. Monday is volleyball.
    4. Tuesday is my free night, so I’ll either be hanging with M or a friend.
    5. Wednesday evening I’m tentatively going to a human trafficking discussion.
    6. Thursday is fire department drill night. It’s also a fireΒ  department board meeting, which means drill may be later, or may not happen at all. There doesn’t seem to be much consistency around our third Thursdays of the month.
    7. Friday is hopefully another free night.

Hope you all have a great rest of your weekend!

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Five Things Friday: 9/28/18 Edition

I feel like I say this every month, but geez, where did the month go?! Next Monday will start us off with October and it just feels like the warm months flew by while the cooler months will hang around forever. So far, so good; it’s cooler here, but still nice. I’m just building myself up early for the cold weather this year.

I decided to take advantage of the pretty ideal weather this evening and washed lil Tallulah for the first time. I’ve had her since May, and this was her first bath. Whoops. She was pretty filthy… but now she’s gorgeous and sparkling again. I discovered that washing her at the fire department is much easier than washing her on my hill of a driveway, so maybe she’ll get a bath more frequently now, weather-permitting. Hooray for getting the dirt off. πŸ™‚

  1. Currently Reading: I managed to finish both The Callahan Chronicals and I Am Not Myself These Days, finally. I managed to download a new book from the library, but I got a few pages into it and was bored. Instead, I’ve been working on crossword puzzles at night, which helps to both tire me out and distract me. Crossword puzzles might be the new books. (Okay, probably not, but they’re a nice temporary fix.)

    Otherwise, I’ve been reading and studying a TON for fire school. Like, it almost feels like I’m back in real school again, with required reading and exams (written and practical). I like it, but I’ve let myself grow unaccustomed to the stress and the act of studying.

  2. Currently Eating: All the foods. I made a ton of food this week – chili, tuna noodle casserole, a huge batch of potatoes for homefries and sweet potatoes for dinners, steak, broccoli, and today I added a loaf of banana bread since I snagged some ripe bananas from work. I love that my fridge is stocked full of food, but it’s also a little anxiety-inducing. I can’t stand to waste food, so I’m toeing a fine line between having a lot of meals at my disposal and having moldy food. So far it’s all fine, but I might need to move a thing or two to the freezer (some of the food already made it there, but more might have to).
  3. Currently Watching: I watched The Departed on Netflix, and though it took me three full evenings to get through it, I LOVED it. A lot a lot. I might try to watch more movies in order to catch up on ones I’ve missed through the years. I hate sitting through more than an hour at a time, but it works nicely if they’re easy to break up.

    Additionally, I’ve started on season 2 of The Iron Fist. I’ve heard from a bunch of people that they liked season 2 way more than season 1, so I’m curious how I’ll feel since I liked the first one. So far, so good, but I’m only on episode 2.

  4. Currently Loving: I got to see the pupperonis last weekend, so that was a good time. They’re such good, happy boys.Β  ❀

    Fire school and the fire department are both going well. In school, we finish up our second module tomorrow, and we have a big exam. To help me get ready, last night my department devoted drill night to making sure I know my knots. In addition to our written exam, we have the practical exam where we have to identify the different parts of a rope and be able to dress around 13 different knots, know how to identify and load the different hose lays, hook up hoses to a hydrant/truck/draft, and carry hoses. At least, that’s what I think is going to be on the practical. For the written, we need to know about different types of energy/combustion/transfers, building construction types and their qualities, different types of water supplies, underground valves, pipes, hose hookups/adapters/valves, and probably so much more that I’m just forgetting. I’ve been taking and re-taking the practice exams online, and I’m probably as ready as I’m going to be, but I’m super-nervous. There’s a lot of info in mod 2 that was totally new to me, so I’m afraid I’m missing some of the crucial pieces. If I do fail the exam (really, you can miss like 2 questions and fail), it’s not a big deal – they’ve told us you just re-test over and over until you pass… but I hate the idea of having to go back for a re-test, even if it is kind of “the norm.”

  5. Currently Anticipating: This is another busy weekend, but it’s looking like it might be a good one!
    1. Tonight I washed Tallulah, loaded up the squad truck, practiced more knots, and got everything together for the morning.
    2. Saturday I have to leave for school before 7am, and I probably won’t get home until 6 or so.
    3. Saturday evening I’m hanging out with M and his son; we’re going to see a movie.
    4. Sunday morning and afternoon, I’m volunteering for a friend’s husband’s nonprofit. The nonprofit provides furniture to families who need it, and apparently there’s a big sale going on somewhere and they’ve agreed to let the group take the first crack at the merchandise, so we’ll be loading furniture on and off of trucks. I’ve tentatively invited M and his son; I’m just waiting to hear back from my friend’s husband to see if it’s okay to bring an 8-year-old.
    5. Sunday evening is technically free so far, but I’m sure I’ll be hanging out either with M or a friend.
    6. Monday night is volleyball. My serves have been killer lately!
    7. Tuesday night is potentially a work thing.
    8. Wednesday I’m probably hanging with M.
    9. Thursday is fire drill night.
    10. And then Friday again.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Five Things Friday: 9/21/18 Edition

Happy Friday, y’all. It’s been kind of a crazy week, but the good kind. The kind that doesn’t allow time for random thoughts. The kind that keeps me busy from activity to activity. For as much as I enjoy sitting at home and reading, watching Netflix, or playing Dr Mario, I think my brain appreciates being constantly stimulated more.

One of the things that kept me busy this week was deep-cleaning the bathtub. I bought these brush heads that you add onto a drill, and the result has been life-changing. I no longer hate cleaning the tub; the addition of power tools has made it kind of fun. You can’t tell from this photo because there’s no “before” picture, but the powered brush heads helped SO MUCH to get rid of the mildew that’s existed in the tub since pretty much day 1. I clean the tub fairly regularly, but that crap is hard to get off when it’s stuck in the grout. But with the brush heads on the drill, I was able to get rid of a lot of the gunk pretty easily. Yay for power tools!

  1. Currently Reading: Admittedly, I haven’t spent as much time reading this week as I would’ve liked to. I expected to be done with The Callahan Chronicals and I Am Not Myself These Days before today, but I still have a bit left in each of them. I don’t even know if I’ll be able to finish them before the weekend is up, because I have a lot of fire school reading to do. No problem, though; that just means I won’t have to scramble to find a new book yet.
  2. Currently Eating: I somehow managed to void my fridge of almost all ready-to-eat food, which doesn’t bode well for my grab-and-go lifestyle of late. I need to find something to take to fire school for lunch tomorrow, and then Sunday I should probably work on cooking something that I can eat throughout the week.

    Tonight one of my fire instructors is cooking dinner for me (I’m currently baking brownies to take to his house for dessert), and tomorrow night I’m heading to see my parents and the pups after school since yesterday was my dad’s birthday, so we’ll be going out for dinner. So at least I won’t have many meals to worry about between now and Sunday.

  3. Currently Watching: Still working on Atypical; I think I have one episode left. It got better after the first episode. πŸ™‚
  4. Currently Loving: I attended Fusion Liaison Officer training for the Western PA All-Hazards Fusion Center earlier this week, and it was pretty awesome. It kind of expanded on the info I learned with the FBI, and I learned more about terrorism, drugs, and human trafficking. I was pretty much surrounded by cops in the class, but I did know one other person – one of my former volunteers. It was cool to reconnect with him and to have someone not in law enforcement to talk to. πŸ™‚

    After the FLO training, I had a Medical Reserves training class to attend. We learned a lot about bombings and how to triage injuries incurred from explosive events. While I was there, I met up with my CERT leader and we discussed disaster damage assessment. Since that was one of my favorite things to do in the world I’m no longer a part of, I was excited. I still have a ton of materials for damage assessments, so I showed her some of them and we discussed having me teach a class on DA towards the beginning of next year. I’m not positive that’ll be a good idea for me, but I certainly know how to do it and I’m more than qualified… so I guess we’ll see.

  5. Currently Anticipating: This weekend is going to be go-go-go until Sunday, but things will likely quiet down after that.
    1. This evening I’m heading to my fire instructor’s house for a makeup class on knots. He’s cooking dinner for me, which was unexpected and very nice. The brownies in my oven smell sooooo good right now… I might have to taste-test one just to make sure they’re okay.Β  πŸ˜‰
    2. Tomorrow I have fire school 8am-5pm. I want to take the fire truck, but since I’m heading to Butler afterwards, I probably shouldn’t.
    3. Tomorrow evening I’m having dinner with the parents and hanging with the pups.
    4. Sunday I’m probably doing some meal prep. M is out of state for the Army this weekend, so I’m free otherwise.
    5. Monday night I have volleyball.
    6. Tuesday night I’m probably hanging with M.
    7. Wednesday night is free so far.
    8. Thursday night is fire department drill night.
    9. And then Friday once more.

Have a great weekend, y’all!

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Five Things Friday: 9/14/18 Edition

Greetings from back in Pennsylvania. The puppers had a blast at doggy daycare / the kennel, and they were clearly exhausted when they got home. Apparently they both crashed when they got in the house – Taco sprawled out on my parents’ bed, and Tank claimed the couch. Such cute little (big) babies.

It’s been kind of surreal seeing the exact place we just left (the place we stay in Myrtle Beach every year) being boarded up in preparation for a hurricane just days after we left. Everyone keeps saying how lucky we were that we’d planned to return just before the hurricane hit, but I keep fighting back because I see things totally differently. I realize that probably doesn’t make sense to most people, but it makes absolute sense in my mind.

It’s been a couple very trying weeks on my end, simply because Facebook, friends, and traditions make looking back at this time last year so unavoidable. Last year I skipped vacation and instead went to Texas to assist in Hurricane Harvey relief efforts and it was incredible; I felt so lucky to be able to help in the ways I did. The year before that, I was obsessed with checking my texts, emails, and alerts for things going on volunteer-wise in our local chapter and managing building an extensive team. This year, I’ve had none of that and hurricane info is ever-present, everywhere I look – a constant reminder that I’m no longer able to do the thing I once loved so much.

And you know, the thing that’s so hard is that in my head, I know all of this is dumb. I recently had the experience of meeting someone new with some old friends around, and invariably the “what do you do” question came up. I normally talk about my full-time job and bartending, and lately I’ve been adding fire school and firefighting into that description. But when you’re with friends who know all about you and who are way more proud of you than you are of yourself, the description tends to wander beyond that. For example, I sound absolutely amazing on paper – I’m our volleyball team captain, I work a full-time job as a success manager, I’m a part-time bartender, a firefighter in fire school (and captain of my school “team”), a Community Emergency Response Team volunteer, a Medical Reserve Corps volunteer, an active FBI Citizens Academy alum, and now I’m also a Fusion Liaison Officer for the Western PA All Hazards Fusion Center. Even I can admit that all of that sounds impressive. Some family and friends have even gone so far as to tell me I’m their hero, and every time it happens, I visibly cringe and I want to scream because I just don’t understand why. But when it comes down to it, it’s not enough for me because none of it comes remotely close to filling the void that’s been gnawing at me since April (or really, since February). I have the growing suspicion that nothing I ever do will ever be enough to make me forget what’s happened and what I no longer get to be a part of. It’s… rough. It’s been a struggle every single day for the past seven months, but the past couple weeks have been nearly unbearable.

(And for those of you thinking “Oh poor Lindsay, she’s safe and sound and doesn’t have to worry about hurricanes, boo hoo,” I totally get it. I rationally know these feelings are dumb, and I know I’m very fortunate to live where I do and to get to do all of the things I do, but that’s not how my brain has worked since early this year. Rationality has no place in my mind these days.)

But anyway, let’s get on to this week’s Five Things!

  1. Currently Reading: I was able to do some reading at the beach, which was nice. I read Calypso in its entirety (looooooove David Sedaris so much), and then unintentionally started reading two other books at the same time.

    My friend Rebecca lent me The Callahan Chronicals to read, and then I had a library Kindle loan become available for I Am Not Myself These Days. So far, I’ve managed to get about 3/4 through both books, but I’ve been reminded of how much I hate reading multiple books at the same time.

  2. Currently Eating: I was very happy to get back to my normal food at home, even though vacation food is always delicious. I managed to get sort of sick while we were on vacation, so I was rarely hungry. I feel mostly better now, but there were a couple painful days thrown in there. But I’m back to eating regular food, and I managed to snag a friend’s sous vide cooker before he left town for the Peace Corps, so I’ve been playing around with that. So far, I’ve made a steak in it and Costco chicken breasts (I didn’t thaw them, and I didn’t season them, but they still turned out okay with some sauce on them at the end). I was very thankful for my foresight in making a breakfast casserole to freeze before we left for vacation; I’d done a decent job of cleaning out my fridge before we left and it was nice to have something to eat in the mornings without having to cook. I suspect the next few weeks will be filled with more sous vide experiments and more breakfast casseroles.
  3. Currently Watching: I finished The Good Place last night, and then moved on to season 2 of Atypical. Feeling kind of ‘meh’ about it so far, but I haven’t even finished S2 E1 yet, so we’ll see.

    I also snagged a free Redbox rental, so I watched Super Troopers 2 a few nights ago. Maybe I had really high hopes for it, but it wasn’t as funny as I’d expected. There were still funny parts, but I thought the first one was better. Then again, maybe I was just in the wrong head space to fully appreciate it. Who knows.

  4. Currently Loving: I turned my mom onto Instagram while we were on vacation. She, like me, really just wants to see dogs being adorable at all hours of the day and night. So that was fun.

    I got some great feedback at work this week, which was nice. One customer said to our engagement exec that “[we] consider Lindsay to be kind of our extended family here,” and another had an issue that blew up while I was out and the management team realized that they hadn’t heard from that account since I took them over (and they used to escalate issues nearly every day). As a result, I got… more work. But this brand of new work is temporary, at least.

    Finally, on the recreation front, I’m loving my fire department. We had drill night last night, and the guys spent the evening teaching me all about SCBAs and catching me up on anything I might have missed in this past Saturday’s class since I was driving back from the beach. I was also given some shirts, a hat, and unasked-for permission to drive one of our trucks to fire school ongoing. So that was nice of them. Additionally last night, we took a few spins around the neighborhood and I got to ride in the officer’s seat again. I enjoy the illusion of power.Β  πŸ˜‰

  5. Currently Anticipating: My Haz Mat Ops class was rescheduled and conflicted with my schedule for Saturday classes, so now I have Tuesdays and Thursdays free again. I’d expected life to be nonstop crazy on my return from vacation, but not having class Tues and Thurs has freed me up substantially.Β  πŸ™‚
    1. Today I’m working from home and I have plans to spend my evening doing yard work and preparing for school tomorrow.
    2. Saturday I have Fire Ground Support class until 5, and then I’m free. I think this will be my first Saturday evening with nothing planned… it’s going to be weird.
    3. Sunday we’re hosting a Spaghetti Dinner fundraiser at the fire station, and I volunteered to help out. My parents might stop by, and M is planning to stop by… so M might meet the parents.Β  πŸ™‚
    4. Monday is supposed to be volleyball day, but we have a bye week this week. So Monday is unexpectedly free.
    5. Tuesday evening is also free now that I don’t have class. I expect I’ll see M one of those evenings.
    6. Wednesday I’m off work to attend an all-day Fusion Liaison Officer training in Westmoreland county.
    7. Wednesday night I have a Medical Reserve Corps class on bombings and their patterns of injury. Wednesday is going to be a crazy (but hopefully awesome) day and night.
    8. Thursday night is drill night with the fire dept.
    9. And then it’ll be Friday again.

Have a great weekend everyone, and if you’re in the path of storms (hurricanes, flooding, etc), stay safe!

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Five Things Friday Will Return Next Week

Today was our last full day at the beach and we start heading back tomorrow.

While I’m in back seat purgatory, enjoy this pristine view of the beach until next week. πŸ™‚

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