Tuesday, November 20, 2007

NY State World Diabetes Day

I know I'm late posting this, but that's partly because I'm late finding it. I happened to be on the NY State Health Department site for work, and saw this link encouraging New Yorkers to get tested for diabetes. It's an interesting article. I'll write more when my life slows down a bit...haha.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Where were you that fateful day?

It's been six years since the September 11, 2001 attacks. It's hard to believe that much time has passed, because I still remember the events of that day. I realize that some of us would rather move on and not dwell on the sadness of the suffering that was inflicted that day, but I feel as though the moments of silence observed by many today are appropriate. 2,997 people lost their life that day, many because they were doing what they always did- going to work, traveling, responding to an emergency call to try to save lives. Alan Jackson released this song afterward, inspired by the events of that day. There were many videos to choose from on You Tube, some which had video montages of images from that day.

September 11th taught me that while we can do our best, there are somethings that are unpredictable. Life has to be lived in the moment. And when things don't go the way we want or expect them to, there is always a chance to grow. Mercy Me is one of my favorite Christian music bands, and I love their song Bring the Rain because it talks about being able to be grateful even when life throws you challenges. The inspiration behind Bring the Rain, which includes one of the band member's sons being diagnosed with diabetes is discussed in this video.

Bring the Rain by Mercy Me

Let us not forget.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Fun Music Friday

Kelly Clarkson's third album, My December, was produced and released with much controversy over how she had to get Clive Davis's support to release the songs she had personally cowritten. Is it a change from the lighter, happier songs in her first album? Sure is, but let me tell you this woman has guts and a voice to match the gut-wrenching lyrics she wrote that were borne from real life. Her true fans will stick by her, and I have a feeling once you hear "Sober" one of the best songs on My December, you'll see why. If you go to You Tube to watch this video, and click on the "more" next to the title it will show you the lyrics. Let me know what you think.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

It's been a crazy summer, so I thought I'd give an update post.

1. I experienced the joy of being my sister's maid of honor on August 19th as she exchanged vows with her best friend and boyfriend of the last three years. (For you ladies who are wondering where the pump disappeared to- it was clipped to my bra in the front which worked just fine- no annoying thigh things to worry about). Those of you who have myspace or facebook can see a few more pictures on there.

2. The week before the wedding, my one grandfather had to be hospitalized and needed surgery. He's healing OK and at home now, but he did miss the wedding and was very sad about that. He also has Alzheimer's, which, watching him and my grandmother deal with the changes and struggles that it brings has given me a different perspective on my diabetes. Yes, my diabetes is challenging at times, but I can't imagine not being able to find the words I want to express what I'm thinking or not being able to remember what I was trying to say in the first place. He said to me recently in a moment of frustration, "They need to do something about this", and he was referring to the Alzheimer's. No matter what though, he'll always be my Pop pop.

3. I'm finally gearing up for the ADA Step Out for Diabetes Walk which for us is going to be September 30th. I'm holding a garage sale to raise money in a couple weeks, but some online donations from anyone who can would be much appreciated. http://main.diabetes.org/goto/katequest If you click on my name under the team roster, from my page you can donate. Every little bit counts. My dad and my friend Stephanie are also walking with me, so they are also doing their own fundraising things.

4. I had the privilege of working with great CDE's at the Sugar Free Gang's Kids Camp in June. It is a local day camp given organized by the only support group for kids with diabetes and their parents in the area. We had 40 kids ages 6-12, and about 12 between 13-18. What was so neat was that I was assigned to the group with the one kid who had only had diabetes for a few months, so he was still learning a lot. He led us in our theme song, Lean on Me, the last day, and his parents had tears in their eyes. So many of these kids loved camp because, like those of us who blog about diabetes, they need a place where other people get what they deal with every day.

5. I recently joined Tu Diabetes, so look for me on there. A few of you have already found me. For those of you who don't know, it's like Facebook, or Myspace for people with diabetes.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Funny 80's List

A friend from college shared this with me recently, and I had to post it here since it made me laugh. The bolded ones are the ones I remember most- though it's a pretty good list if you ask me.

You Know You Grew Up In The 80's if...

1. You've ever ended a sentence with the word SIKE.

2. You can sing the rap to the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and can do the Carlton

3. You know that "WOAH" comes from Joey on Blossom

4. If you ever watched "Fraggle Rock"

5. It was actually worth getting up early on a Saturday to watch cartoons.

6. You wore a ponytail on the side of your head.

7. You got super-excited when it was Oregon Trail day in computer class at school. (oh heck yeah, played that as much as I could on our Apple IIC Plus..)

(pic borrowed from http://icanhasacheesburger.com)

8. You made your mom buy one of those clips that would hold your shirt in a knot on the side.

9. You played the game "MASH"(Mansion, Apartment, Shelter, House)
10. You wore stonewashed Jordache jean jackets and were proud of it.

11. You know the profound meaning of " WAX ON , WAX OFF"

12. You wanted to be a Goonie.

13. You ever wore fluorescent clothing. (some of us...head-to-toe)

14. You can remember what Michael Jackson looked like before his nose fell off and his cheeks shifted.
15. You have ever pondered why Smurfette was the only female smurf.

16. You took lunch boxes to school...and traded Garbage Pailkids in the schoolyard.

17. You remember the CRAZE, then the BANNING of slap bracelets.

18. You still get the urge to say "NOT" after every sentence.

19. You thought your childhood friends would never leave because you exchanged handmade friendship bracelets.

21. You ever owned a pair of Jelly-Shoes.

22. After you saw Pee-Wee's Big Adventure you kept saying "I know you are, but what am I?"

23. You remember "I've fallen and I can't get up"

24. You remember going to the skating rink before there were inline skates.

25. You have ever played with a Skip-It.

26. You remember boom boxes and walking around with one on your shoulder like you were all that.

27. You remember watching both Gremlins movies.

28. You thought Doogie Howser/Samantha Micelli was hot.

29. You remember Alf, the lil furry brown alien from Melmac.

30. You remember New Kids on the Block when they were cool...and don't even flinch when people refer to them as "NKOTB"

31. You knew all the characters names and their life stories on "Saved By The Bell," The ORIGINAL class.

32. You know all the words to Bon Jovi - SHOT THROUGH THE HEART.

33. You just sang those words to yourself.

34. You still sing "We are the World"

35. You tight rolled your jeans.

36. You owned a bannana clip.

37. You remember "Where's the Beef?"

38. You used to (and probably still do) say "What you talkin' 'bout Willis?" (who didn't love Mr. T?)

39. You're still singing shot through the heart in your head, aren't you!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Atlanta trip

Two weekends ago, I flew to Atlanta, GA to visit my friend Mary Lou. Atlanta is a huge city, with lots to explore, but we were able to see the amazing aquarium, the High Museum, and the Martin Luther King Jr. National Park.

This is a picture of some of the brilliantly colored fish we saw on Saturday at the Atlanta Aquarium.

I thought it was really neat that whomever designed the signs for the MLK National Park depicted one of his dreams- that people of all color would some day not be divided and be able to hold hands. If you look at the top of the sign, you'll see what I mean.
"I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor's lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers."-MLK from his "I have a dream" speech

Here I am in front of a statue of Mahatma Gandhi on Saturday.

This is a drawing of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr with each of their respective quotes. Martin Luther King Jr was inspired to use nonviolence by Gandhi's teachings.
"Nonviolence is a powerful and just weapon. which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals."
Martin Luther King, Jr.
"Nonviolence means avoiding not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit. You not only refuse to shoot a man, but you refuse to hate him."-MLK Jr.

On Sunday we got to explore the High Museum of Art, which had a wide variety of exhibits going on. One of them brought back memories of Italy, as I had seen these very doors in San Giovanni, outside of Florence. The exhibit was called "The Gates of Paradise: Lorenzo Ghiberti’s Renaissance Masterpiece" It was really neat to learn about the restoration process, and how the artist's techniques were learned during the process. More exciting though, was the ongoing Louvre exhibit showcasing things such as the art collections of the French kings, not to mention their exquisite furniture and other collectables. Although someday I'd love to get to Paris to explore the Louvre and see the rest of the masterpieces housed there, this was a great way to get a taste of it. We also had time to view the amazing collection of Annie Leibovitz's photography which included both photos of her family and a large variety of famous people. She's photogaphed everyone from Jamie Fox to Nicole Kidman to a few of the U.S. presidents and their family and fellow staff. One thing that stood out to me was her ability to capture the essence and spirit of the person she was photographing at the moment.
It was a great weekend, and I recommend all three of these stops to anyone visiting Atlanta in the future.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Rascal Flatts won the award for Group of the Year on the ACM's the other night, and I think they deserve it. They've had a great year with wonderful hit songs, "Stand" being one of them. It's a great song for anyone who needs reminding that even when the going gets tough, it's when we learn the most about ourselves. And as Danny Orton and Blair Daly, who wrote the song, say in the chorus:

"Cause when push comes to shove
You taste what your made of
You might bend til you break
Cause it's all you can take
On your knees you look up
Decide you've had enough
You get mad, you get strong,
Wipe your hands, shake it off
Then you stand, Then you stand"

Saturday, May 05, 2007

My love language

I saw this on a friends page, and it is pretty accurate. While gifts can be nice, I'd much rather spend time with someone and get to know them. To me, being thoughtful and communicative is much more valuable than any gift.

I feel loved when...

The Five Love Languages

My Primary Love Language is Quality Time

My Detailed Results:
Quality Time: 10
Acts of Service: 9
Physical Touch: 6
Words of Affirmation: 4
Receiving Gifts: 1

About this quiz

Unhappiness in relationships is often due to the fact that we speak different love languages. It can be helpful to know what language you speak and what language those around you speak.

Tag 3 people so they can find out what their love language is.

Take the Quiz!
Check out the Book

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Fun Music Wed

I'm a fan of Rob Thomas, so when I heard this new song on the radio, I had to look it up online. It's called "Little Wonders".

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Fun Music Wed

In light of recent events, both nationally, and locally, I decided to chose a song that I think will resonate what I've been thinking about the violence.
This is the original Nickleback video, provided to You Tube.

This is the same song, but with different pictures and the lyrics displayed. It also ends with a religious message. I posted both, because I liked both, and I believe in people having a choice, and respect that choice.

In a town about 1 hour south of me, an armed man who had stolen a van, shot at three police officers over a 24 hour period of time (from yesterday to today). One of them was lucky, and the bullet hit his vest. One is in serious but stable condition at the best trauma center in our area. The third, a 29 year old, who was married with a 7 month old child, died of his injuries. The man who did the shooting appears to have died in his house after it went up in flames earlier tonight while the police had it surrounded. I hadn't posted anything about the Virginia Tech shooting because it was hard to find the right words. My thoughts and prayers have been with the families and friends of the victims, not to mention the classmates and all the school community. Everytime something like this happens, I wonder, when are we going to stop? When will enough be enough? And when are we going to change what is clearly broken?
Edited 5/2/07: In the course of the investigation, it was discovered that tragically the trooper who was killed was wounded by friendly fire. A total of 69 bullets were shot during an attempt to get the shooter to surrender, and it was in this fire fight that the trooper was fatally wounded. He had been shot once by the shooter in the chest, which just went into his vest. He was laid to rest today, with thousands turning out to support his wife and daughter and the rest of his family and friends.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Spring is here (Finally!!!)

I love all the seasons, and the fact that we get to experience all of them here in the northeast. However, I love how spring makes me feel so alive and how wonderful it feels after winter. There's something about the scent on a spring breeze, the warmth in the air, or maybe it's just the signs of life and renewal all around. I wrote this poem many years ago, inspired by a gorgeous spring day.

The cool breeze coming in through
The window caresses my skin teasingly,
As if to say, "Come out and play!"

I look out to see
Why it's calling to me,
And the lawn that was once
Covered with pure white snow
Is starting to show
Signs of life

Although is is mostly brown muck
That my shoes will get stuck in,
I grin to see the beginning
Of green grass

A pair of Gold finches flit by,
And I wonder what he sings to her
To convince her to come and play with him
Is it a reminder of how wonderful
His feathers will look
Against the blue spring sky
When they fly together?
Or does he tell her
What his heart is saying under
It's covering of down and feathers?

The breeze blows in again,
Causing goose bumps
To rise on my skin,
And my nose awakens
As the faint scent of the first
Spring shower
Brings back memories
Of my childhood,
When my imagination would
Go running to meet
The first day of spring.

Copyright Kate, 2000

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Fun Music Wed

I loved this Nelly Furtado song, "Say it Right", when it first came out. It's one of those songs that gets turned up in my car as loud as I can handle it, with the bass turned all the way on so you can feel the wonderful heartbeat-like rhythm. It takes a few listens to hear the lyrics, but the verses are neatly written.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Fun Music Wednesday

I've been so busy working on a presenation for school that I almost forgot it was Wed! The video I chose this week is Martina McBride singing her recent single "Anyway" a beautiful song about living life. I love her songs because she's not afraid to talk about real issues, like in her song Concrete Angel, which is about child abuse. Not to mention her wonderful voice! Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn are who introduce her as she sings this at the Country Music Awards in this video, and they are another one of my favorite country acts. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Fun Music Wed

Chris Daughtry whose recent single "It's Not Over" caught my attention, has a great first album out. Since he only made it to the 3rd runner up spot on American Idol, he was able to write and play what he really wanted to which is rock, not pop. You'll notice I tend to prefer singer/songwriters, and Chris knows how to write great lyrics. Check out the lyrics to "Over You" below.


Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Not all Skin Preps are created equal

I love my insulin pump, and I've had minimal issues with sites in my 8 years. The main thing I need to do is make sure I'm rotating my sites enough, and I'm fine. Ever since I've been on the pump, I have used the Sof-set and Skin Prep underneath the tape to reduce irriation. It has always worked well for me, sites have to be seriously yanked on or messed with to come off unexpectedly. So, a few months ago when I was ordering my test strips, I also ordered Skin Preps. Or so I thought. I hadn't needed to use them until a couple weeks ago, and discovered that not all skin preps are created equal. This is a picture of the skin preps I usually use:

Ingredients: Isopropyl Alcohol, Butyl Ester of PVM/MA Copolymer, Acetyl Tributyl Ctirate
However, this is what I received to use:

Ingredients: Purified Water, Diglycol/CHDM/Isophthalates/SIP Copolymer, Sorbitol, Glycerin, Octoxynol-9, Dimethicone Copolyopl, Diazolidinyl Urea, Methylparaben
(Editors note- my theory is that the glycerin was the culprit. Who puts something that is in soaps in a skin prep?)

Now, I notice that the packaging was different,but the box I received actually looked a lot more like the ones I usually use. So, I figured I'd give it a try. Then next day in the shower, I hear something drop, and I hadn't dropped anything. I look down, and there is my site, on the shower floor. Huh??? I've never had a site completely come off within a day, so this was strange. I figured, okay, at least I can just change the site-and at this point was suspicous of the skin prep. However, I don't like to forgo using it, and I figured once wasn't enough to blame on the skin prep- maybe there was another explaination. So, I gave it a second chance. And the next shower my theory of it being the skin prep was proven- site came out again. I quickly changed the site using just alcohol underneath and it seemed fine for the rest of the day. I went out with a friend and treated myself to a Starbucks frappacino, and guessed at the carb amount. 2 hours later I tested, knowing that my guesses on these things are often wrong, and I had been cautious since I had done a lot of walking that day and my site was in my left leg. I was 385, so I corrected, and I felt fine, so I thought it was just the frappacino. Well, the site must have been bad because at 530 the next morning I was 438 with ketones and feeling sick, and spent the rest of the day chasing that high down and flushing out the ketones with water. So, that's why I wanted to share this story- especially for anyone new to pump therapy. Luckily the week following that one day has been fine, and no more site issues have happened. And this past Saturday my blood sugars were the exact opposite because I woke up at 81- and spent most of my day under 141.

Time BG
539 438-manual shot and site change
640 387
800 259-correction
1100 443-food and correction
1219 410-correction, more water
218 235
400 174-set lower basal because I was walking a lot
616 169

Time BG
530 81
730 99- one of my best post breakfast reading
1030 129
1200 142
150 197
300 131
430 49-oops over did the carb ratio with my last snack

Isn't it amazing the difference a site and starting out the day right can make?

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Fun Music Wed

This song was originally sung by Chris Tomlin, and though I love his version, Barlow Girl has certainly done a splendid job on it. It was one of my favorite songs to sing with the worship band. It's a great reminder that although this world challenges us to be discontent with what we have, we often have "Enough"- and many of us are blessed with more than enough.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Fun Music Wednesdays

I love music- whether I'm listening to it, dancing or singing along. So, I thought I'd do more than just occasionally share the lyrics of the songs I love on here. So each Wednesday, you'll learn who I've been listening to lately. I have an eclectic ear, so there will probably be something for everyone. Some people who know me may even be surprised by this Joss Stone pick- but I think she rocks! I love how she uses her voice- doesn't over or under do it and she obviously loves what she does for a living. She's only 19 and I have a feeling we'll be seeing plenty more of her.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Local ADA website

As I mentioned a few days ago, I am volunteering with my local American Diabetes Association's Step Out to Fight Diabetes walk. And after a few days of working on it, I'm ready to unveil the Myspace page I designed to get the word out about our local walk. http://www.myspace.com/stepoutdiabetes
April 2, 2007 the walk website will be going live, so we'll have a link to that on our page at that point. We're hoping to encourage more donations since online donations tend to generate more funds. Let me know what you think- we'll also eventually have posts about why the committee members are involved with the ADA- how diabetes has affected them personally or a loved one. Also, if you have a myspace account, feel free to join our friends section!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Hurts so Good

Ahhh I love that feeling I get after going to the gym- that post workout high, the endorphins coursing through me. Even though I know I'll be a little sore the next day(and after my strength training class, for a couple days). Of course, it does make some fun times trying to predict when the muscles I worked are going to decide to pull the glucose my body needs away to restock their storage, and cause a low. I had my fun strength training class last night, and I lowered my basals by 10% for 4 hours this afternoon. During those four hours, I did not go low. Then, at 9pm, after a busy afternoon and early evening, and heading to the gym for just 30 min on the treadmill, I'm 73. WHAT??? I was frustrated, but took a deep breath and thought a minute about my options, decided on liquid sugar replacement, and got started with my friend. A little Gatorade and an 85% decrease in my basal did the trick- 82 mg/dl 1.5 miles and 30 min later. And now I'm 260- maybe I didn't need to decrease that basal for so long. That's what correction boluses are for, right?

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

The Prince who turned back into a Frog

Back in September, when I returned from Italy, I made the announcement that I was engaged. After that, we chose a date (9/30/07), started our planning. My sister was engaged within a few weeks of me, so we were planning our weddings together. They were going to be 6 weeks apart- hers in mid-August and mine at the end of September. Dresses were bought, reservations were made with the church, photographer, DJ, and the reception hall over the course of October and November. And then December came. And it all fell apart. It's a long, "dark and twisty" as Meredith on Grey's Anatomy would say, story. It ended 12/20/06, for reasons he gave that made it clear that it was for the best. And as those of you who read this blog know, I'm moving on- in so many ways. School has been one of the best things I've done, and work is going well. Come September 30th, 2007, I will be walking in the local ADA Step Out for Diabetes walk, which I am on the Planning and Fundraising committee for. Next week I will be working at the local ADA office to set up a Myspace page for the ADA walk- watch for the link to it here. Also, for those of you with Facebook accounts, there is an ADA group on there already. My family has been wonderfully supportive, as have been my friends. My dress for my sister's wedding came in recently, and it looks great!
So, while one chapter has ended, attitude is everything and I believe in looking at this as an opportunity for new beginnings.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Reflections on the Journey......

Sometimes the ordinary tasks in life are the ones that you need to pay attention to- I've been thinking about this experience and mulling it over and was finally given the inspiration to share it.

A couple weeks ago, I took a drive to an unfamiliar town. I was due to be at my destination after nightfall, so I doublechecked my directions and headed out as the sun set behind me. The first 15 minutes were well lit, and the most familiar part. As dusk fell, the clear sky above began revealing it's stars to me. I was grateful for the full moon that had risen as these were country roads with stretches of pure land with no human inhabitants. My journey took me along a river and the moonlight danced off the water. Every now and then I'd have to refer to my directions and make sure I was on the right course. Once or twice I missed a turn and had to find my way back, reorient myself in this strange land, and set off again. The serene countryside had a calming effect, eventhough I was in uncharted teritory. It inspired a reflective mood and to realize how much of the beauty in everyday things we forget to notice. The way the stars travel across the sky, the way the seasons change. If we take the time to listen, nature will tell us one simple truth: change is constant and most of the time it is for the better. Sometimes in a moment it is hard to see, but time, perspective, and quiet reflection reveal what we need to learn about ourselves. Sometimes we have directions, or someone who is a guiding light, who has gone before us. And other times we seem to get lost, when in reality it was only a lesson in where that road may lead.

Vincent Van Gogh's "Starry Night"

Thursday, January 18, 2007

A Leap of Faith

Have you ever been reading, and had the words seem to jump off the page at you? Or feel like someone wrote those words just for you? Well, I had that experience as I was reading the "The Up Side" section of my Guidepost magazine last night. Readers send in inspiring and positive quotes to share, and this one was written by John O'Hurley who was on Seinfeld and more recently Dancing with the Stars champion.

"When we leap, we must leap as though the net will appear. A leap in life, however big or small, is an act of commitment with the expectation of success."

As I had mentioned when I started this blog last April, I'm an RN who enjoys teaching and I was hoping to get into diabetes education. I did investigate that, and enjoyed it, as I always enjoy teaching patients how to manage their disease and prevent future complications. However, for many reasons now is not the time for me to be in diabetes education. So, I had to start back at what I thought was square one figuring out how to use my talents and what I value most in nursing, and my almost 6 years experience to develop my career further. I have my Bachelors of Science in Nursing, and had been encouraged by my professors to go on for my masters. At the time, I wasn't sure in what, and desperately needed both real-life work experience and a break from writing papers that I wasn't sure how were going to apply to work situations. About 6 months ago, after 3 years away from school, I started to get the desire to take a class or two, still not sure what exactly in. I knew that I wanted to apply myself even more to my masters if I decided to go back, so I wasn't going to do this halfway. I take awhile to make the "big" decisions (because I like to think all the pros and cons through), but once I'm committed, I'm determined to make things work. After spending the last month or so job hunting and tired of jobs that were not fulfilling to me, I decided it is time for me to pursue my Masters of Nursing Education. There was even a spot open in one of the classes this semester, so my first day back as a student is this Saturday! I am also starting a new job.

So, now back to why the quote jumped out at me. As you can see, I'm taking a two leaps of faith in myself at the moment. I also signed up for The OC New Me Challenge to work on my A1C goal. Each of these things will be challenging. They will require hard work and perseverance when life throws me a surprise or two. And continued reliance on my wonderful family, who has been super supportive, my true friends, and this wonderful OC Community. Because that's what life is really all about, isn't it? Being able to rely on community, contributing back to it, and living your life to the fullest.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Funny post to start the New year with but.....

I had to! Boston Creme is one of my weaknesses when I'm actually inside a Dunkin Donuts (which isn't often) so it was too funny that it was the result of this funny quiz. Even funnier that it describes me pretty well. And I figured it was better to post this before my "ways I'm going to improve in the new year" post

You Are a Boston Creme Donut

You have a tough exterior. No one wants to mess with you.
But on the inside, you're a total pushover and completely soft.
You're a traditionalist, and you don't change easily.
You're likely to eat the same doughnut every morning, and pout if it's sold out.