Monday, November 10, 2014

Finding Balance & Moving Ahead

These past few months have been crazy - setting up a new family practice, moving my 86 year old father from Texas to live with us, running my husband's quorum court justice re-election campaign, buying 2 acres, building a new we can open Bed and Biscuit Boarding Kennels
Today I decided to unplug and start my morning enjoying Mother Nature
                                             I simply sat and enjoyed my morning coffee. 
My Dad enjoyed his Sunday morning napping with his Little Dog - They are blending into our house and routine well.  I never in my wildest dreams ever imagined my Dad living with us.  He is a very independent person.  So, I am having to find a balance between taking care of him and letting him have his independence.
Dad and Little Dog
I spent time this afternoon trying out recipes for dog biscuits - each four-legged visitor boarding with us will have a homemade biscuit on their pillow when they get to their kennel.
Check-out our new Bed & Biscuit Boarding Blog
Check back frequently to see if I am finding balance and moving ahead.
~ Connie ~

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Training Tuesday - Time to take control

Training Tuesday -  Time to take control and get back on the healthy wagon.  I use to run everyday...
Me, Lisa and Max Running for the Humane Society 
I have been working on my diet, with great results.  I am within 12 lbs of my goal weight.  Now it is time to add exercise back into my daily routine. I have used every excuse you or I either one can think of not to, family illnesses, school, graduation, new job.... no time.  
The real issues is - I hate to exercise.  I love the results, but absolutely hate the effort it takes to get started.
I need structure.  In the past when I ran or exercised I had a partner, the Big Man (aka my husband).  We met on a group run... I fell in love with him that night. Over the last 5 years his health has started to decline and he is no longer able to exercise with me. I have a plan.
Now to focus on the motivation..  Stay tuned, cheer me long the way... I am going to do this for me and the Big Man.

~ Connie ~

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

I Run...So I will not have regrets

My routine since finishing school and starting a new family practice has been to get up between 2 AM and 4 AM with my four-legged babies to potty, going back to bed and sleeping till 6 AM when I wake-up the Big Man and he takes over the kennel duties.  
I sleep in our toss and turn till 7:30... today I changed.

I got up and hit the treadmill.  It felt great.  I got in 30 minutes!  It was a walk / run but I was moving.  
I loved every minute of the activity. 

I Run so I will not have regrets.... 
I meet my husband running.  After 25 years of law enforcement (he was the entry person for the swat team) he developed COPD (chronic bronchitis), diabetes, and had to have knee replacement. He can no longer run.  I run because I know how quickly something you love can be taken away from you.
Enjoy every minute of life while you can....
~ Connie ~ 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Weekly Roundup - more like a monthly round up!

I guess you have noticed I have been missing in action.  Life has been really busy - but I guess everyone's' life is busy in one way or another. 

I have been working hard to build my family practice. It is amazing how many people do not know that I am in practice, even though we live in a small town where everyone knows the most recent gossip.  Maybe that is good - I am not the center of gossip

I created a new blog.
and a new face book page
Connie Family Practice 
When I read about something that interests me, I want to know more about it.  That is one of the joys of being a life-long student.  Connie's Family Practice Blog will contain info from mainstream sources such as the CDC, The National Institutes of Health, The World Health Organization, The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Association of Nurse Practitioners to help you live a healthy life. 

As for my personal life - My Dad came to visit, we have started clearing the land we purchased for the new boarding kennel (yes, a business, not part of our rescue) and we have been playing baseball (well watching our grandsons play) almost every night.

My Dad
Oh, and we have been fostering kittens.  Last Sunday night someone left 2 kittens in my yard, not a very smart thing to do considering we have 14 rescue dogs.  But, the Big Man heard them before the dogs did and they are safe.  Anyone need a kitten??? I will travel anywhere in Arkansas if they can have a great home. 
For those wondering - no running this month, no biking this month, a little yoga and always vegetarian.
Have a Great Week
~ Connie ~ 

Sunday, March 16, 2014

First Week in Family Practice

 It is official - after 18 years of formal education (Associate, Bachelors, and a Master's Degrees, Doctorate - all but dissertation, and a post Master's Certificate) - I am a Nurse Practitioner, my name is on the door.
Seeing the first patient was exciting and scary at the same time. Exciting because,  I am finally doing what  God has lead me to do.  Scary because I suddenly realized, I am making decisions that could harm a patient if I don't get it correct.
As a Nurse Practitioner I do have a safety-net my collaborative physician is in the next hallway. If I have a question he is there. 
My family has been very supportive throughout this process. Everyday my boys (3 sons) and the Big Man text me to see how I am doing - they ask about how many patients I have seen or have scheduled. They know I am a little anxious about getting started and growing my patient population.
My baby-girl sent me the most awesome plant.
I know the next six months is going to be rocky trying to find my groove, getting some structure to my day.  But, I know I have a strong support system and I am where God wants me to be.
Have a Great Week
~ Connie ~

Sunday, March 09, 2014

Winter in Arkasnas - Stranded Motorist, Four-Legged Babies and A Stationary Bike

Wow this had been a week - Last Sunday the rain started before we got out of church, followed by hours of freezing rain, sleet and ending with snow after we went to bed.  Little did we know when we got up Monday morning that all of Northeast AR would be shut down.

I had planned to start seeing patients in the clinic - but no electricity, internet, or phone service and hazardous road conditions kept me from starting to see patients.
The Big Man and I spent most of the day at home, trying to keep the four-legged babies (14 of the them) warm and occupied and feeding the birds.  The Big Man and youngest son did go out late Monday night to help rescue a friends daughter who was stranded about 15 miles from our home on I55 in Missouri. 
Tuesday the weather was still horribly cold and the travel conditions continued to be hazardous.  Most of the day we could see I55 (from our house) at a standstill. We went to be Tuesday night praying for warmer weather and for those stranded on I55.

On Wednesday morning we learned just how horrible the conditions were on I55. Friends were calling asking if we could help the motorist stranded - facebook was full of comments about stranded motorist on I55.  So, I called the office of emergency management (OEM)- only to be told by the OEM director  that the conditions were not as bad as everyone was making them out to be.  So, I asked why was the governor sending AR National Guard to every other county but Mississippi.  He didn't know but he said he would call me back.  Within 30 minutes he called back and said I had his full support do what needed to be done - wow wait a minute, I hadn't planned on doing anything except take care of my four-legged babies, I just wanted everyone to do what they were supposed to do. 
I spoke with the Mayor, who said the same thing, I had his full support and resources.  So, the Big Man and I opened a shelter and found places for stranded motorist to stay.  By Wednesday night there were no hotel rooms, no gasoline, and some grocery stores had empty shelves.  Stranded motorist - were truly stranded.
The shelter was opened for less than 24 hours, we were able to provide people with a warm place to sleep and a little breakfast before they got back on the road.  People think what the Big Man and I did was amazing and something extraordinary, but it was the right thing to do.
You can read the letter to the editor one of the stranded motorist wrote.
Praying for warmer weather
~ Connie ~
P.S. I did get in 2 bike rides this week on the stationary bike and the exercise felt great.

Sunday, March 02, 2014

New Clinic and a Stationary Bike

February has flown by - It is hard to believe that March has arrived.  I have been busy the last two weeks setting up my clinic (family nurse practitioner).
When it comes to picking out a color scheme, I usually head for the tans and yellows,  but I think the colors in the clinic are perfect (green, cinnamon, and a pale yellow).  My vision for the clinic - warm and comfortable.  I want my patients to feel welcome. 

I envision my clinic as a place where patients are more than a number.  I want to know the patients by name.  I want to remember to apologize if they have to wait. I want them to know they can ask questions. I want the patient to feel like they can call anytime they have a concern. I will always remember to say "thank-you" to the patient for allowing me to be part of their healthcare team.  I refuse to forget the golden rule.

A little about my training - the last two weeks I haven't had the energy to get up and run in the morning. So, after working at the clinic, grading papers for the online classes I teach, I have been riding the stationary bike.  I get a couple of miles a night.

Riding the stationary bike has made me realize that I have lost muscle and stamina.  This  week my goal is to ride everyday.  Check back next week to see if I achieve my goal.
~ Connie ~