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Exercise. And Creepy-ness. Creepy Exercise.

September 20, 2015
tags: ,

I could come up with a lot of adjectives to describe how I feel about exercise and none of them would be very nice. Still, the benefits are undeniable. Someone needs to invent a way to get all those same benefits by sitting on the couch, eating chocolate chip cookies and watching NCIS. Sadly, until then, exercise it is.

5 years ago yesterday, I completed my first (and only) triathlon. You can read the race recap here. The short version is that it was ugly. I didn’t think I was going to make it through the swim, but I did…barely. Then my blood sugar crashed about halfway through the bike ride so I had to pull over and eat some energy chews. I didn’t come in absolute dead last, but I was close. Seriously, I think there might have been 1 or 2 people to come in after me. Still, it’s one of the races that I’m most proud of because I didn’t quit.

Plus, they gave me this awesome duck that says “AFLAC!” and who doesn’t love a stuffed animal?

Fast forward to today. I’ve been busy being pregnant, having babies, moving across the country, changing jobs, etc and well, exercise hasn’t been a priority. This has had the unfortunate effect of my clothes not fitting and I’m way too cheap to keep buying new ones. So I decided to get back into shape, starting with running. I even signed up for a 5k! It seemed like a long way off and now it’s two weeks away. I discovered a long time ago that I need a looming event to stay motivated with exercise. Basically, if I paid the entry fee, I’m too cheap to NOT show up at that starting line and since I prefer to make it across the finish line still alive, training becomes necessary.

I also got a Fitbit! Last Christmas or birthday or something, we bought Jake a Fitbit that counts his steps. At the time, I wondered if it was a good idea because Jake already likes to find the most remote, isolated parking spot and park in it. The FitBit only made the problem worse because then he was trying to get as many steps as possible. Then, when I decided to start exercising, I knew that I would need to come up with ways to incorporate being active into normal activities so I bought myself a FitBit. Suddenly, I didn’t mind the remote parking spots! Unless it’s creepy. Jake doesn’t have a very good barometer to determine whether or not something is creepy, so there are a lot of times (especially on trips) that I have to say “No. I am not going into that run down, isolated, gas station with only two dimly lit outdoor lights because HAVEN’T YOU EVER SEEN A HORROR MOVIE?! OMG!!” We’re working on it.

Speaking of creepy, I went running the other night with just Piper. I generally run the perimeter of the college that’s across the street from us. Side note – nothing really makes you feel more out of shape than huffing and puffing around a college campus while the college student runners are gliding along effortlessly. So Piper and I are moseying along and well…there was a creepy incident. Incident might be too strong, moment perhaps? It’s hard to explain so let’s go with moment. There was a creepy moment when I thought I was about to abducted, murdered and chopped into little pieces. I sprinted away (ha! or shuffled slightly faster), cut across the middle of campus and home. My run was cut short but I was too creeped out to continue.

Not scary enough to deter creepy people…or maybe she DID deter him, because I was not, in fact, abducted, murdered or chopped into pieces.

Then yesterday. I had planned to go for a run but it got late and was dark. So Jake and the kids were going to go with me, but wouldn’t you know it? His phone rang and he had to work for a bit. By the time we got back, it was late and I didn’t want to disrupt the kids by getting them out of their car seats, into the stroller, go for a walk and then try to put them to bed. That’s way too much going on for 9:30 at night but I really needed to run! Did I mention this 5k is in TWO WEEKS?!

The solution: Jake followed me Rocky-style in the car, blasting Eye of the Tiger from the car radio. WINNING!

And I got new running shoes. Aren’t they pretty?

More Narrative

September 4, 2015

My brother was very disappointed that my last post had very little narrative, or really, any narrative. So in honor of his birthday, we have narrative.  I’m also experimenting with writing this post in an iPad app. Here we go!

I started a new job last week and have spent some time in Kansas City, including wandering around near our hotel. It was an interesting area, where Forever 21 and H&M are neighbors to Kate Spade and Burberry.   

And then there are the fountains. KC has lots of them.  

 Is it just me, or does it seem like these two are having a really bad day?
  
This fountain was dyed yellow for Childhood Cancer Awareness month. Cool idea but yellow isn’t a great color for a fountain. It just isn’t.

 Yeah, I’m still not a fan, but you know it got us talking about it. So in that respect, they’ve succeeded. 

 Look! He’s getting trampled by a horse but still managed to catch the tennis ball! That’s talent.  

We also discovered this cool little doggie bar too.

  
And it has a webcam! 

  
I keep wanting to log in and watch. Maybe this weekend.

That time we roadtripped to Oregon.

August 30, 2015

In July, we took a roadtrip to Portland Oregon for a wedding. Yes, that’s right. We road tripped across the country with a two year old, 10 month old and furball. So. They say a picture is worth 1000 words and I’m a bit tired. So let’s let the pictures do the talking.

The Wedding

My handsome guys.

Annabelle in a box!

Okay maybe it’s a podium. Wouldn’t it have been interesting if she had spent the ceremony there?

Yellowstone

This reminds me of that Beatles picture.

Grayson and me at Biscuit Basin.

Here we are again.

Jake and Annabelle

Annabelle and her new binoculars.

Devils Tower in Wyoming

De Smet, SD

We also took the Laura Ingalls Wilder Tour in South Dakota. So awesome!

We also located the World’s Largest Pheasant. Try to contain your jealousy.

A Tale of Two Blankets

August 3, 2015

I know, I know, it’s been way too long since I’ve updated this. SHH! I have a story to tell you, or maybe a confession is a better way to describe it. To start, we have to go back to the beginning when times were simple and dye stayed where it was supposed to.

Last year, I spent months browsing yarns and colors to find just the right combination to make a blanket for Grayson. I had an idea in my head of what I wanted (nautical) and I’d ask for Jake’s opinion on colors. He’d give me his opinion, I’d growl at him when inevitably his opinion didn’t match mine (hey…is this why Grayson growls all the time?!). So we went round and round until I found something and I was off! I had a plan, knit the blanket and it was great. I loved it. Here is a picture of Annabelle using it.

Didn’t it look great?

Well right before Grayson was born, I went on a nesting spree and washed all the blankets, including this one. The blue bled all over everything, even Annabelle’s blanket that I made before she was born. I was beyond upset. Both blankets looked awful, although Grayson’s was definitely worse. I texted my friend Sabrina, who is amazing and awesome and owns a yarn company, but sadly she did not have a magic trick to go back in time and undo it. I went to bed that night heartbroken.

The next morning I woke up in labor. So there you have it ladies. The key to bringing on labor is to work tirelessly for months on a carefully planned project for your new addition and then when you’re 39 weeks & 5 days along, royally mess it up. You’ll be in labor the next day. You’re welcome.

In the weeks after Grayson was born, I bought some dye remover with the hope of getting Annabelle’s blanket back to what it was. I was successful in removing the dye that bled, but unfortunately, I also removed a good portion of the original dye. So her blanket is now a sad, faded, pilly version of its former self. However, it’s not THAT bad and Jake talked me out of over dyeing this one. I’m still planning to knit her another blanket one of these days.

I can’t fix the faded colors, but I recently bought a pill shaver and wow! It already looks so much better than this picture.

Now we get to Grayson’s blanket. I knew there wasn’t any way to save it, other than to over-dye it. So I bought some dye remover and removed all of the dye I could, then bought black dye, with the hope that it would come out in different shades from gray to black. That didn’t really work either. It’s now a dark, gray-ish blue. Apparently my black dye was actually blue-black. It’s fine, but not great. Jake thinks I should try dyeing it again but honestly, I’m just done with it. It’s fine and Grayson can use it so whatever.

Grayson’s blanket today. Really. I had to carefully sneak it out from under him to take this picture. He doesn’t take kindly to being woken up, so it’s good thing he was sound asleep.

As far as time goes, the original disaster happened on September 27th, and I just finished the over-dye a few weeks ago. It took me a long time to even be able to look at the blanket.

The whole thing was extremely disheartening. After that fiasco, I did do quite a bit of holiday knitting but after that was completed; I didn’t really have any other projects lined up. I started a project but I really wasn’t feeling it. So I took a break from knitting and started working on a Bucilla Christmas stocking kit. That was over 6 months ago.

Santa is headless and the horse is bald. Jake thinks I should leave Santa headless so it can be a creepy Christmas stocking.

You read that right.6 months with no knitting. We’ve gone on trips here and there, including a big trip to Portland OR and you know what? I didn’t even research local yarn shops. I have a cabinet full of yarn that’s just a pretty decoration and it has sat completely untouched.

Then, fate stepped in. On our way back from Portland, OR, we stayed one night just outside of Bozeman, Montana. Through the magic of social media, I discovered that the one and only Sabrina was also staying the night just outside of Bozeman!! What are the odds?!? Of course, we had to meet up for coffee the next day and Sabrina chose a coffee shop based on the their reputation for very strong coffee. We had been there a few minutes when Sabrina got there and after the hellos and how-are-yous, she said “Did you see there’s a yarn store next door?”  See that? I was right next door to a yarn shop AND I DIDN’T EVEN KNOW IT.  We chatted for a bit, and I told Sabrina my sad story about Grayson’s blanket and how I finally got around to overdyeing it but it really seemed to kill my knitting mojo. She understood and was sympathetic to my problem. She also let Grayson chew on her one of projects and apparently For Better or Worsted is a great yarn to chew on. Who knew? Then before we hit the road, Sabrina and I decided we had to see this yarn shop.

Oh my. It is an amazing yarn store. Seriously, if you like yarn and are ever in Bozeman, MT, you HAVE to check out Yarn Scout. We browsed through for a few minutes when Sabrina decided to introduce her and give them some of her materials (business card, etc).  She introduced herself to the cashier who had heard of her! Even better, the owner was in the store and had time to meet with Sabrina right then! It was amazing watching Sabrina work and now Yarn Scout carries Anzula!

I left Bozeman with an awesome new knitting bag filled with enough For Better or Worsted to make Grayson a new blanket, but probably the best thing I got from Bozeman was my knitting mojo. Talking with Sabrina and visiting the amazing yarn shop was just what I needed. For the first time in a long time, I wanted to knit and couldn’t wait to break into a skein of yarn and get started. Thank you Sabrina for the wonderful gifts, being a great friend and helping me get over my heartbreak and back to knitting! We need to meet up in random cities more often!

The bag was calling to me. I HAD to buy it. There was really no other option.

And it’s now full of awesomeness.

Unfortunately for the Christmas stocking project, it has been shelved for a little bit because I jumped back into knitting. I wanted something fast and easy to get some momentum going and it only seemed right that it would be with Anzula yarn. So here is a hexipuff made with Anzula’s Squishy in 1 Red Shoe. I love 1 Red Shoe. It’s quite possibly the most perfect red on the planet. I only need about 300 more and I might have a lap blanket.

Hexipuff #51. I’m actually up to 55 now.

Then I bought some yarn and cast on a special project for a special kiddo.

Pink Alpaca laceweight…what could it be?!

This project required casting on 180 stitches. The only thing worse than binding off a boatload of stitches, is casting on a boatload of stitches.

Next time, I’ll fill you in on the rest of our road trip from the wedding to Yellowstone to De Smet and everywhere in between.

Jurrah, Peas and Savannah – Oh My!

April 30, 2015

How long has it been since my last post? I don’t even want to know. I’ll be ashamed. So let’s just delve right in, shall we? Wait…it’s hard to update you on the happenings in Spri-Mo until I know where we left off. Oh well. I’ll just roll with it and if I leave anything out, you’ll never know.

Annabelle – She’s TWO! She likes coloring, her giraffe (Jurrah!), long walks on the beach in her stroller, and Jake & the Neverland Pirates. She’s also transitioning from Annabellese to English. Jurrah is her beloved Giraffe. She will grab its leg, wave it and say “hi!” in the cutest little voice. I melt every time and she knows it. Peas is not only please but also drink. I think it started when she would ask for a drink and we’d tell her to say please. So she’d say please and get her drink. Well, now she thinks that drinks are called peas. We’re working on that one, because we want her to ask for a drink, not a peas but still say peas. I mean please. She’s also making progress with counting, probably due to Jake and his buddies counting their gold doubloons at the end of each episode. Although her version usually goes something like this: One…Two…Five…Three…Six…Five…Six…Seven…Five…Five…One. We also just discovered that she knows what the number 5 looks like. She’ll point at it and say “five!” Clearly we’ve got a child prodigy on our hands.

Grayson – He’s SEVEN MONTHS! When did that happen?  He’s sitting independently for short bits, rolling over and can sit for extended periods with minimal support. He is eating baby food and likes smiling at his sister. He’s also been growling and chattering more and more.


He’s dancing a jig in this one.

Travel – Over President’s Day weekend we went to Savannah, GA! It was great! It was warm and there was a beach and a lighthouse and yarn!!


Lunch on the water


Lighthouse on Tybee Island

We climbed to the top of the light house. It was 178 steps, which actually doesn’t sound very impressive but wow. My excuse is that we were also carrying the kids. Yep. That’s why I was struggling so much.


Look at that beach! I want to live here.


Tree lined streets!

Savannah was neat. It had this combination of laid back, touristy beach town and high society southern city.


There’s pavement under there somewhere.

Then it snowed on our way back which was problematic. You see, our Escape has EcoBoost which supposedly make our little bitty 4 cylinder act like a V6! Vroom! Reality went something like this:

Us: Mission Control, Engage EcoBoost!
MC: EcoBoost Engaged.
*crickets*
Us: Mission Control…did you engage the EcoBoost?
MC: Yes.
Us: You sure? Because we aren’t moving.
MC: EcoBoost is engaged.
Us: Uh…is it working?
MC: All systems are online.
Us: Right. So it’s working and we aren’t moving. Mission Control, do you have any words of wisdom?
MC: Don’t bring a knife to a gun fight.
Us: ….Fabulous.

The whole trip back, I kept telling Jake that as soon as we got to Missouri it would be better because MoDOT cares.


Do you see that in the background?


It’s a snowplow!!

We all made it home just fine but let’s say that our Escape (henceforth known as EcoBoost) was skating on thin ice with Jake.

C is for Cookie

February 13, 2015

Hi. My name is Jen and I like cookies. A lot. I don’t think I’ve ever met a cookie that I couldn’t be friends with. Cookies are especially awesome with a big glass of milk. Unfortunately, milk wreaks havoc on my system, unless I’m pregnant. No, I’m not pregnant but with both pregnancies I could enjoy milk without consequence. Alas, as previously stated, I am not pregnant and as such milk is off the table.

Moving on, since the title of this post is “C is for Cookie” not “M is for Milk”. Cookies! My favorite dessert is Pizookie. It’s essentially Cookie A La Mode, with the cookie fresh and warm from the oven. Jake’s Mom made Pizookie for my birthday and it was awesome.

Even though he has reached the ripe old age of 4 months, Grayson is still nursing. Shocking, I know. We supplement with formula as needed but I try to do what I can, within reason, to make as much milk as possible. What does this have to do with cookies? Well, it turns out that certain foods aid milk production and you can make convenient little snacks that include these items. You guessed it! Cookies!!!

The recipe I use is for oatmeal chocolate chip cookies flax seed and Brewers yeast. They’re actually pretty good as evidenced by the fact that I ate half a dozen in one sitting. My brain went “cookies!! And they’re healthy!!! And I HAVE to eat them. For Grayson!” This is how I got down to my pre-baby weight only to gain 7 pounds right back. I’ve had to moderate my intake of my healthy, milk-aiding cookies.

IMG_1682
Why yes, I will eat cookies to feed my son. Parenting is about sacrifice.

I’ve been making and eating these cookies for a couple months now and you might be curious what prompted this blog post now? Well, that’s a great question!

The other day, we were just getting home from the farm just after midnight. Less than a block from our house, an SUV passed us going the other direction and it had a roof sign like pizza delivery cars sometimes do. I only got a quick glance at it but I was pretty sure it said cookie. In fact, I turned to Jake, as we pulled into the driveway, and said “did that car say cookie?!” He was slightly confused because he was busy paying attention to things that mattered but he quickly processed the new information, put the car in reverse and started after the cookie car. We didn’t know which way it went, so we made a couple of guesses and pretty soon crossed paths again with the elusive car. I confirmed that its hat really DID say cookie! It also had a phone number, which I googled as Jake turned around to head back home.

It’s called Insomnia Cookies and they deliver warm cookies to your home between the hours of midnight and 3am. How have I never known about this?!?!? I was chatting to Jake about this place as we pulled into our driveway when the light bulb finally turned on. Their store hours are 11:30 to 3am. Their store is downtown, which isn’t far from us and it was 12:30am. Jake sighed and shook his head as he is quite used to me having these flashes of brilliance AFTER we have passed the appropriate turn, or in this case, after we were already back home.

Still, he’s awesome and put the car back in reverse and we were off on the cookie hunt again! The store was easy to find and for less than $3, I had 2 decent sized, warm, delicious cookies.

IMG_1739

The guy behind the counter very helpfully told me that they deliver to our neighborhood all the time and gave me a menu. They also have an app where you can build up loyalty points. This could definitely be bad for not only my waistband but also my wallet.

The True Cost of a C-Section

January 22, 2015
tags: ,

Medical costs in the U.S is a hot button topic and as a rule, I avoid hot button topics. It’s like Ferris Bueller and his isms. He doesn’t condone isms of any kind and really, I have to agree. I decided to write this post anyway. It’s all over the media and internet that medical costs in the U.S. are ridiculously high. It’s also all over the media and internet that the rate of c. sections in the U.S. is ridiculously high, and I always hear that a c-section runs about $30,000. Being the curious person that I am, I’ve wondered…how much does it REALLY cost?

When I was pregnant with and gave birth to my daughter, we had an HMO, so I never actually saw a bill for any of those medical costs. Our only out of pocket expenses were my diabetes testing supplies, which I estimated at maybe $100. With Grayson, we have a PPO. I knew from the start that this change would mean that we’d have significantly more out of pocket costs, but I was happy to see how much it *really* costs for prenatal care, delivery, etc. Yeah, maybe I was looking for a silver lining. Whatever. I was still excited to set up a spreadsheet to keep track of these costs. I love me some spreadsheets.

So that is exactly what I did. I set up a spreadsheet and diligently kept track of what was billed to the insurance, what the contracted cost was, what the insurance paid and what we paid. Now, while I think of pregnancies as run of the mill, it should be noted that I did have the sequential screening and Gestational Diabetes. Both of these added some cost, but I also talked my way out of that horrid 3-hour Glucose test, so there obviously wasn’t a charge for that. I’m still so glad I talked my way out of that one. It still stands out in my mind as one of the worst parts of my pregnancy with Annabelle. While perusing this cost breakdown, keep in mind that I really cannot complain about the medical care I received with either pregnancy. Also, it goes without saying that the kids are priceless and we’re all here safe and sound.

Oops, I’ve already bored Jake to sleep.

Before we proceed with the cost run down, you need to know the following. Each cost will be broken down by was was billed to the insurance, the contracted/pre-negotiated cost, what the insurance paid and our out of pocket costs. You will also notice that the costs aren’t in U.S. Dollars, Canadian dollars, pesos, Euros or yen. Instead, they are in CBB, or Chipotle Burrito Bowls.  Yep, Chipotle Burrito Bowls, because it occurred to me that sometimes you have to put things in perspective. Plus, in addition to spreadsheets, I also love me some Chipotle and yes, we go often enough that I know exactly how much our order is going to be. I contemplated doing this in skeins of yarn, but those can vary pretty widely depending on fiber content, dyeing technique, etc, whereas our Chipotle order is a much more stable cost comparison. And while some of you may not fully appreciate a skein of really nice yarn, I’m confident that you all recognize the value of a Chipotle meal. Without further ado, here we go!

Grand Total:
Billed Cost – 4557 CBB (Dude!! That’s YEARS of Chipotle!)
Contracted Cost – 2078 CBB
Insurance Paid – 1836 CBB
Out of Pocket – 242 CBB

This cutie pie is definitely his weight in gold, I mean CBB.

Interesting Highlights (or maybe not so interesting) –

The Nurse Anesthetist (B – 101, C – 61, Ins – 55, OOP – 6) was awesome. He spent the whole surgery, putting cool cloths on my forehead. I think he also held the barf basin when I got sick. What a guy. He was worth 6 CBB. Coincidentally, the Anesthesiologist himself was the same price. He arrived after I was in the OR, talked to me for half a second, gave me the drugs and then disappeared. Maybe he was in the room, maybe not. I don’t know and I didn’t care because I was so so so happy for the drugs, so yeah, he was worth 6 CBB as well. Then again…that 6 CBB doesn’t count the drugs themselves (B – 79, C – 33, Ins – 30, OOP – 3). How about this, Total for the anesthesia drugs, Nurse Anesthetist, Anesthesiologist was 15. For all of that, 15 CBB is fine with me.

Next, let’s discuss the Recovery Room (B – 252, C – 106, Ins – 96, OOP – 11). I was in the Recovery Room for 2 hours after Surgery. The billed rate for this room is 2 CBB per MINUTE. However, they have a pre-negotiated agreement that says we only pay 1 CBB per Minute. Damn! Those are some expensive minutes! Granted, they’re also fairly critical minutes having just been cut open, baby removed and sewn back together. And there was a nurse sitting basically right by my head the entire time, so she deserves some CBB. She also provided us with one of the more humorous parts of the day, which makes her worth extra CBB in my mind.

You see, I had been overheating prior to surgery and Jake and this nurse had been laying washcloths soaked in ice water on my head, back, etc. It would take about a minute for my body to take an ice cold cloth and make it steaming hot. This was a LITTLE bit better during surgery, probably because they keep the OR as cold as meat locker. OMG, it felt like heaven. Anyway, a common side effect of the spinal is shaking and wow. I had the shakes so bad! They don’t hurt or anything, just annoying. So we got to the Recovery room and the blood pressure cuff couldn’t get a reading because of the shaking and the pulse oximeter couldn’t get pulse for the same reason. Then she when tried to take my temp, it came back at 90 degrees with two different thermometers and she said “Hmmm.” And when we looked at her quizzically she said “Well, you’re not among the living.” I’m not?! For the record, the afterlife looks exactly like a recovery room.  I assume she’d have been slightly more alarmed if I hadn’t been conscious and talking to her at that moment. Still, all that ice water had apparently had the desired effect of cooling me down, but maybe it went a bit too far. So they covered me in warm blankets.

Alright, back to costs. Now, I also got charged for a Labor & Delivery room (B – 958, C – 405, Ins – 364, OOP – 40). The really funny part of this is that the L&D room and the recovery room were the exact same room! In my head, I’m picturing that thing they do on TV where the wall spins and when you get back to where you started, it’s a completed different room. Except in this case, it wasn’t.  Alright, maybe that only makes sense in my head. Moving on now.

I was in the L&D room for an hour, tops. So while the Recovery room was charged at 2 CBB per minute, the L&D room was 16 CBB per minute. Yes, those are also critical minutes, right before surgery but all they really did was take blood for labs, and expect me to answer lots of annoying questions. I’m sure that their donor breast milk program is wonderful but when I’m having contractions? I DO NOT CARE. Just tell me where to sign.

Now, it’s possible this L&D room charge also includes our time spent in L&D triage because I don’t have an charge for that. In that case, the cost per minute comes down to 4 CBB per minute. Yeah, they had to check on me, start an IV and call the Dr a couple times, but that still seems high. Especially when you compare it to my Post-partum room (B – 187, C – 79, Ins – 71, OOP – 8). The billed rate for that room was 4.5 CBB per hour, which is 0.1 CBB per minute. WOW. That’s a steal! They still had to check on us, bring me drugs, test Grayson’s blood sugar and do vitals for both of us, so you would think it’d be fairly similar in terms of cost. Plus, this nurse was also funny which, as already mentioned, makes her worth more.

Moving back in time to prenatal costs, I had 4 ultrasounds over the course of this pregnancy, not counting the super quick one we had at 8 weeks to check for a heartbeat. The average cost per ultrasound (B-84, C – 36, Ins – 21, OOP – 14) is kind of misleading. The really interesting part is that they range in billed cost from 116 to 35. I understand that each ultrasound had a different purpose but really…it seemed to be the same. Measure a bunch of stuff to determine that things are going the way they’re supposed to. Why such a big gap in costs? They were all done at the same facility.

The one cost I really have heartburn over is the Glucose test (B – 11, C – 4, Ins 3, OOP – 1). Yeah, it’s important yada yada yada and actually all of the lab work was surprisingly cheap! But still. They basically give you a sugar bomb, then take your blood one hour later. Keep in mind, I knew going in that I would fail (I did) because I had been monitoring my sugars already and knew they’d be high, but I know there’s a procedure they have to follow. I get it. So I drank my sugar bomb and let them take my blood an hour later. No biggie right? Except that as I sat there I got that feeling. That “OMG, I’m going to pass out” feeling. I told the vampire phlebotomist that I needed to sit a minute. Then I asked for water and she also gave me some crackers. I plopped my head down on my arm rest and concentrated on my breathing while she put cool paper towels on my neck. I asked her to pour the ice water on my head but she laughed. I guess she thought I was joking. I wasn’t. A couple minutes later I was fine and I came back to the waiting room with my water and crackers. Jake knew right away that it hadn’t gone well because it took longer than everyone else and I was the only one who came back with refreshments. What can I say? I like to make sure I get my CBBs worth. Although it still seems like a poor trade. I gave them a CBB and in return they made me nauseous, poked me with a needle and gave me some water and crackers. What a deal! Everyone should do it.

Still it could be worse. I have nightmares about that stupid 3 hour test. It’s torture. The CIA should consider this tactic when interrogating people. They’d start talking for sure.