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March 15, 2013

Friday Six: A Smattering.

The Friday Six ... only it's a lot more than six.(I realize there's a lot more than six items here.  I can't count properly, though, so "a smattering" covers it well enough.)

Chuck Norris turns 73 years old this month, and the .gif of him kicking the meteor made my day.  Oh, I remember the days when Splenda sales were up because Chuck Norris has no Equal.

I have already downloaded these, because they are awesome.  Because mockwotation marks need to on the slate of options.

Insulindependence will be hosting the next North American Conference on Diabetes and Exercise in San Diego, California, on August 16-18, 2013. This sounds awesome. I'm so going.

As someone who is responsible for raising a strong, empowered daughter, I love this.  And I never knew her name was Pauline.

This Hemoglobin A1C Educational Kit is up for competition at New York's Next Top Makers.  According to the site, "It can provide patients and healthcare professionals with a visual metaphor to better understand A1C test scores, as well as help patients/educators set new A1C goals to achieve during their next A1C blood test."  I'm for that.

Christel is back, and with a verbose vengeance.  (I couldn't be happier about the return of my extended family to the blogosphere.)  Check out The Perfect D.

I have always wanted to drink from my camera lens, versus drinking in through it.

My good friend Ben Miller is guest posting at TedMED about stress.  WHAT DOES HE MEAN BY STRESS?!

There's a discussion about diabulimia over at Jezebel, which is not where I expected to see this kind of discussion, making it even better.

Talking about all the different adjectives that can be used to describe good ol' diabetes, over at Animas.

And about staying at the center of our healthcare, as patients with diabetes, in the most recent issue of diaTribe.

And this weekend, the RI branch of the JDRF is holding their second annual Diabetes Expo.  Ironman Triathlete Jay Hewitt will be delivering an excellent keynote, I'll be presenting with fellow PWD and endocrine fellow Shara Bailo, and diabetes innovators like Jerry the Bear's family and GlucoLift will be in attendance, among all sorts of other activities.  If you're Rhody-local, check it out!

January 04, 2013

The Friday Six: New Year, New Ewe Edition.

Fine.  It's more than six.  Also, I'm terrible at counting.  See also:  carbs.Lots of links to share this morning, as I wipe snot from the Bird's nose and sleep from my eyes.  (Actually, that's a super gross concept, wiping sleep from your eyes.  Does that mean "sleep" is that film of eye geeb that builds up sometimes?  If so, sleep is nasty.  But I still wish I did it more.) 

Link time:

August 17, 2012

The Friday Six: CreepyTown and Keeping Cool.

Hi!  I have links!  And exclamation points!  Which means it's time for a Friday Six

The Friday Six:  August 17, 2012 edition1.  I'm proud to be part of the latest JDRF Countdown magazine, with an article about keeping insulin and other diabetes supplies chilled out in the summer heat.  Click here to check out Keeping Cool: Climate Control for Type 1 Diabetes Management.

2.  It's on for the 2012 Celebrity Chef Sandwich Challenge (I didn't know this even existed until yesterday), and fellow person with diabetes Sam Talbot is up as a finalist.  If his recipe receives the most votes, the JDRF scores a ten thousand dollar donation.  It takes about four seconds to vote, so if you have four seconds handy, please give some clicks to Sam.  

3.  The team at the Diabetes Hands Foundation is gearing up for this year's Big Blue Test, and for 2012, there are five $10K grants up for grabs for US based 501c3 organizations, and $25K to two overseas non-profits.  For more details, check out this press release, and get ready to test, exercise, and test again to show the impact of exercise come October!

4.  Last weekend, Chris and I were lucky to catch a screening of DxONE at the Rhode Island International Film Festival (RIIFF), and it was inspiring to see diabetes represented on the big screen (and not in a way that referenced anyone named "Shelby.")  Dan Masucci and his son Nick have created a film showing diabetes as a disease that, despite being so invisible, penetrates every moment of every day, and deserves constant research and funding towards that elusive cure.  If you're able to catch a screening of this poignant short film, consider yourself lucky - it shook me right down to my non-functioning islets.

5.  "Yes, he IS crying, isn’t he? You are right. He’s probably hungry. Should I feed him? And if so, where do I put the food? His eyeball? His butt? What kinds of cuts of meat do babies like?"  I wish I wrote this:  Hello Stranger on the Street, Could You Please Tell Me How To Take Care Of My Baby?  Thankfully, someone far cleverer did, and it's one of the funniest things I've stumbled upon on McSweeney's in a while. 

6.  And if you spend too much time on Facebook after 11 pm, you'll see the most bizarre links fly by.  Case-in-point is this one from Faye (who made the Novolog cake pops I covet so much), which features a lovely wedding reception and a what the HELL is that?  (Click through and look in the balcony to see what I mean.  Completely creepytown.  Explanation here, but don't cheat!)

Have an excellent weekend, and try not to get nightmares from that last picture. 

June 15, 2012

The Friday Six: Phil Donahue.

The Friday Six:  June 15, 2012 editionThe weather here in RI (or so I've been told - haven't been home much lately to see for myself) has been decidedly un-summery, with rain and temperatures in the low 60's.  Which is why today, a day with sunshine on tap and the promise of reaching 80 degrees, is a good day to bunk off and go to the beach with the Bird. 

But first, some Friday Six links:

1.  Today is the last day for the public to vote for the DHF Seeds grant recipients.  There are some excellent projects up for consideration, and you can find out more/view videos/vote by "Liking" on Vimeo here

2.  Today is also the one year anniversary of Kim's You Can Do This Project, and in the last twelve months, this video project has served to inspire, empower, and rally the diabetes community.  Thank you, Kim, for creating something that truly makes a difference.  We love you!!

3.  I'm very happy to be home with the family, and it cracks me up that Birdy is keeping a running, slightly inaccurate mental log of where I've been.  "Mama, you took a plane?  From Californana.  And then you were in Pennsylvania."  "And where in Pennsylvania was I, Birdy?"  "Phil Donahue."  "Or ... Philadelphia - close enough, little Bird."

4.  Have you seen Snapseed?  It's a photo application for the IOS platform, and it makes photos look awesometown.  There was a promotion a week or two ago where you could download the app for free (thanks for the advice, Karen!), but it's definitely worth paying for, too.  It made a photo of the Grand Canyon that I took from an airplane look actually grand, from 36,000 feet up in the air. 

5.  And have you also seen this piece on A Sweet Life by Alex O'Meara, talking about Why Do People Get Diabetes?   This line alone is worth the read:  "One way to explain that disparity is that most people simply don’t believe diabetics deserve more investment in a cure. After all, they’re already getting what they deserve."  (Make sure you read the whole article before you form your own opinions about the writer.  ;) )

6.  And lastly, a friend of mine has a friend of his who was recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.  She's looking for the best resources for someone who's completely new, but in need of some support.  I'm more familiar with type 1 resources, so if you have advice/bloggers/websites/resources you can offer up for a newly dx'd type 2 in their early 40s, please share!

Time to grab the sand pails, sunblock, and Birdzone.  Off to enjoy as much of this summer as I can!

June 01, 2012

The Friday Six: My Snuffy Has a First Name.

Today would be a good day to go to the beach.  And for a Friday Six, because there are so many links roaming around unsupervised in my brain that I need to let them out:

1.  On a recent episode of Sesame Street (tv show du jour in my house these days), I learned that the Snuggleupagus has a first name ... and it's not "Mister." I saw his full name written on a piece of mail he received from The Mail It Shop, and a quick Wiki search confirmed it.  Snuffy's first name is ... Aloysius.  It's so close to Dumbledore's first name that I can't stop smiling.

2.  Every actor should be judged by his "see a birthday cake" face.  I've learned this from books.  (And if you haven't read Graham Roumeiu's Me Write Book: It Bigfoot Memoir, you're totally missing out on some excellently bizarre storytelling.)

We practice this at home.  "A birthday cake?! For me?"

3.  Did you know the Russian smiley face emoticon often goes sans colon?  Just a parenthesis. (How on earth does it conduct its business?)  Oh Wikipedia ... you color my world.

4.  The American Diabetes Association 72nd Scientific Sessions are taking place in Philadelphia, PA next week, and I'll be roaming around with a battered copy of the aforementioned Bigfoot book, glucose tabs, and a red moleskin for taking notes on the sessions that are sure to fill my brain with information.  If you'll be there, please say hi O hai.and point me in the direction of coffee.

5. Taking place today, at 10 am EDT, is a live chat on TuDiabetes with CDE extraordinaire (and Philadelphia 76ers fan) Gary Scheiner.  Gary wrote the book Think Like a Pancreas and has some great information for people who are living with diabetes ... because he is also living with diabetes.  Nothing like chatting with a medical professional who "gets it" on more than one level.  Tune in at 10 am!

6.  And lastly, the FDA has improved the first outpatient trials of the artificial pancreas project.  According to the JDRF website, "The approval of this milestone study follows a major 18-month long effort by JDRF and allies to ensure a clear and reasonable regulatory pathway for outpatient artificial pancreas studies, and ultimately for AP systems to be approved and made available by the FDA."  This is incredible news, and you can read more details here

That's all she wrote.  For now. 

February 24, 2012

The Friday Six: Spaceshot Edition.

The Friday Six: February 24, 2012 edition. Also, it snowed?I'm all sorts of spaceshot, and headed to Philadelphia for the weekend (technically to Conshohocken, PA, where the Children With Diabetes Focus on Technology weekend is taking place), but I had some bits and pieces I wanted to share before bailing. What better way than a loooooong overdue Friday Six?

1.  My daughter is exercising her right to just say "NO!" (or, in her case, "No, no, no!"), and as a little extra added chaos, Chris decided to teach her to do the Dikembe Mutombo finger wag. It cracks me up because Birdy starts going all "No, no!!" and wagging her finger, and then he wags his, and the two of them almost fall over from Mutombo'ing. Is this normal?

2.  I wanted to share the new clip from Chris's upcoming film, ATM. Click here to check out the teaser clip, and know that I sleep with one eye open and have trained the Dexcom to alarm for low and high blood sugars, and also when Chris is writing something involving "it could happen to any of us" chaos ... so all the time? (And you can check out a little Chris-on-Chris discussion in a coming soon edition of Just Talking.)

3. In other "family" news, I love, love this post from George at Ninjabetic. Replacing a chair with an exercise bike is an awesome way to inspire a little fitness while checking out your favorite shows? He's making the switch for Lent, and I think it's a badass way to spend 40 days.

4. After a #dsma discussion this week with some friends from the DOC, I ended up waaaaaay down the rabbit hole on YouTube, catching one of my favorite Sesame Street clips of all time. The "yip yip" martians are awesome, but if you're not careful with said rabbit hole, you may end up stumbling upon one-eyed versions of Ernie and Bert taking street drugs. (Don't blame me - I voted for Kodos. Also, it was late at night.) 

5. Cupcakes from a box sometimes come out alright. (Even though I didn't try one for several days - I was making an attempt at willpower, and I didn't want to have to log a "cupcake entry" on my Kevin spreadsheet. Didn't stop Birdy from chomping one down, and throwing the Mutombo finger when I told her she couldn't have another one.)

Birds love cupcakes.

6. And this is not my fault. I just think he's hot - is that a crime??! Don't judge.

Happy weekend'ing!

July 15, 2011

The Friday Six: Information Overload.

The Friday Six:  July 15, 2011 editionFor once, I'm not at a loss for things to write about.  The problem is more finding the time to let the words out!  But there are a few links/ideas I wanted to share, so here's a Friday Six aiming to alleviate the pressure in my head.  ;)

1.  The latest issue of diaTribe is out, and with it is a SUM Musings column I wrote back in December (but had been put on hold for this cure-focused issue).  "What is a cure for diabetes?  Is there room for variances in that definition?"  I think that perspective varies like basal rates.  Check out the column and see what you think.

2.  The Australian Diabetes Council has some videos about life with type 1 (and a few on type 2).  I received an email from their media outreach team, and while I don't post everything that's sent to me, this one with Sebastian made me smile.  I want to hug the kid, and his dad, for two entirely different reasons.  

3.  There have been a lot of posts about the Friends for Life conference last week, but this one from Scott Strange broke my heart and made me smile, all at once.  Thank you, Scott, for this poignant piece.  

4.  dLife is playing host to a new Generation D column, and this one has a big shout out to Victoria Cumbow and her work to help the PWDs in Alabama who have been affected by the tornadoes.  Click through to The Outpouring and see how the diabetes community isn't just blog posts and Twitter ... we're helping one another in real life.

5.  Hannah at Dorkabetic has always been one of my favorite d-bloggers, because she's smart, creative, and she doesn't pretend to have it all figured out.  Hannah's diabetes recently "turned 21," and she had a tough endo appointment to mark the occasion.  Throw a little love Hannah's way, if you can, and raise a cup of your favorite liquid in her honor!  (I'll be raising iced coffee.  BSparl may be raising a pot of invisible tea.)

6.  And lastly, as I've watched the shrubbery in the backyard quiver while my idiot cats do battle in there, tearing through the yard and running after one another (and mostly Siah dive-bomb attacking Abby the Cat, with poor Abby just sitting there, paralyzed by fear and fat), I need to remind myself that they did once like one another.  These foolish animals were once buddies. 

They used to like one another.  Or at least slept on the same rocking chair.

Although you'll note that Abby has one eye opened.  Smart cat. 

December 17, 2010

The Friday Six: Indiana Kimball.

Friday Six time!  (No time for a long post intro, because the Bird is asleep and I am taking advantage of the down time.)  Bring it.The Friday Six:  December 17, 2010 edition

1.  Charlie Kimball is on a victory lap already.  (When will the racing puns be considered "overused?"  Not yet?  Okay.)  BSparl's buddy Charlie (the two of them can be spied in this photo, where she is hopefully not pooping in his helmet) is moving up to IndyCar, with Novo Nordisk at his side.  According to the press release,

"Novo Nordisk, a world leader in diabetes care, has partnered with Chip Ganassi Racing, LLC to create the Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing team for the 2011 IZOD IndyCar season. The team will sponsor a new entry in the series driven by American racecar driver Charlie Kimball. This partnership makes Kimball one of the first drivers from the 2010 Firestone Indy Lights series to move up the official "Road to Indy" with a full season sponsorship."

Congrats, Charlie, and I'm really excited for you as you make this next, exciting race towards awareness!!  (PUNS!) 

2.  Make sure you check out Cherise Shockley's interview on the WEGO Health blog, as she shares her diagnosis story and the story of the inception of the #dsma (Diabetes Social Media Advocacy) chats on Wednesday nights.  Nice interview, Cherise, and great way to bring more light to the #dsma chats!

3.  The Pepsi Refresh Challenge is still going on, and the diabetes community still has the opportunity to earn grant money to help send kids to diabetes camps (like my beloved Clara Barton).  I posted about it and Amy posted about it today, so if you want to click through to the contest and cast your vote, please do!  You can vote every day until the end of December, so please take a few seconds to help!

4.  Over at Blogabetes, one of my favorite writer's, Carey Potash, talks about his son Charlie's progression towards growing up and taking over the management of his diabetes, bit by bit.  Carey's posts are poignant and always make me think, and they make me smile at the same time.  Great read, with insight into a great perspective.

5.  Last week, I participated in a MedHelp web chat about whether or not plastic products are safe, with chemistry professor Joe Schwartz, PhD.  Dr. Val covered the basics here, and Kim had a good wrap up on her site, but the main reason I participated was because of the baby bottle stuff.  Ever since we found out we were pregnant with BSparl, I noticed all these call outs on baby bottle packages, claiming "NO BPA!" in crazy bright letters.  Dr. Val and Kim are medical professionals with medical degrees, while I'm just a health blogger and a new mom, so I wanted to check out this chat to see what the "real deal" was with plastics and their safety as it relates to my daughter.  Honestly, the chemist guy said that there wasn't anything credible to worry about, but the information out there is plentiful - and it's not all accurate.  Even though I respect the opinions of my online doctor and nurse friends, I still lean mainly on my daughter's pediatrician for information on what's best for her.  I'm old school for an online dork.

6.  And lastly, there are two new posts up at Animas today, one about "Pinging" in the New Year (you know how I feel about puns) and then one addressing the Holiday Irony of our dessert party this weekend for friends.  Tonight and tomorrow morning will be spent baking cookies, a flourless chocolate cake, and possibly some lemon bars, and I am making a point not to drain my insulin pump in the process. ... Should be interesting.  :)

Have a great weekend, and enjoy the links!

December 03, 2010

The Friday Six: Snail, Squid, and Turkey!

The Friday Six:  December 3, 2010 editionIt's finally Friday, and after this chaotic week, I'm looking forward to sleeping in on Saturday morning.  (Note to BSparl:  Sleep in, would you?)  Good day for a Friday Six!

1.  First off, there was Diabetes Blessings Week, the brainchild of Mike Durbin.  He described the blog meme as: "It is a time to reflect upon all of the blessings in our lives and express our gratitude for them.  And despite all of our complaints about living with this disease, I know that diabetes has blessed each of us in one way or another."  I thought this was a powerful idea that helps take some of the negativity about diabetes and at least find a few silver linings.  (I wish I'd had the time to participate, but at least I can link back to my post about Diabetes Things I Like.  Makes me feel like I took part.)   Click on this link to read the posts from Diabetes Blessings Week. 

2.  Chris at A Consequence of Hypoglycemia wrote about something he did, that I also did, on like the very same day.  He left his meter at home and had to roll through the day solely relying on the power of the Dexcom.  Just yesterday, I realized that I'd gone about seven hours without actually pricking my finger, instead using the Dex to direct me.   Those of you who are using CGMs - have you ever done this? 

3.  Moving over to Blogabetes, Nicole wrote a post this week that I kept nodding my head at.  Her description of what a low really feels like is so true, from the way you confirm the number on your meter out loud to that feeling of "other-worldy" that comes over you when the lows are intense.  This post is a must-read.

4.  Even though I didn't want to laugh at this, I couldn't help it.  Catherine Price over at A Sweet Life lost her pump ... in a waterfall.  Currently, her Minimed is floating around in Thailand while she sports a very convenient loaner pump.  (Thank goodness pump companies are finally tuned in to the fact that THINGS HAPPEN to insulin pumps that are completely unintentional, but render us in need of a back up from time to time.)  Have you ever lost a pump?  OMG I am so sorry.

5.  A glimpse into what's going on in my head:  This song has been stuck in there for the last few days and I can't get it out.  I've been singing it around the house, Chris is begging me to stop torturing him with it, and BSparl may let loose with it as her first tune.  Do not click this link or it will be stuck in YOUR head for all eternity.  

6.  And lastly, George has forever changed the way I high-five with the turkey, the squid, and the snail.  Chris and I were practicing these last night and laughing out heads off.  My favorite?  The turkey.  It's just 2 Cool 2 B 4Gotten.  (And with that, I'm all fifth grade.)

Have a great weekend!  Ska-widd!!

November 19, 2010

The Friday Six: Six Photos from the Discovery of Insulin.

Twenty four years ago, diabetes became part of my life and with it came these vials of bandaid-scented insulin and a potluck of syringes.  Diagnosed in 1986, I came in just as at-home blood sugar monitoring was becoming common and well into the age of disposable insulin syringes.

What I didn't realize was how different life would have been, were I diagnosed sixty-four years earlier.  How my life wouldn't have had nearly the quality it has now, nor the length.  Because if I were diagnosed sixty some odd years earlier, I wouldn't have had access to lifesaving insulin. 

Insulin is not a cure.  That's for certain.  But it is a way of keeping myself alive, until such time that there's a better option.  (See also: hurry up, researchers)  While I was in New York this past weekend, I had a chance to check out the Breakthrough:  The Dramatic Story of the Discovery of Insulin at the New York Historical Society with some of the local diabetes crew.  (Thanks for arranging the guided tour, Allison!)  And it really was incredible to see just how far we've come in such a short time. 

Here's a few thousand words about the exhibit:


This is a shot of a boy before he had access to insulin and then an "after" photo, where he happily describes himself as a "little fat boy."


A quote from Mary Tyler Moore about how diabetes becomes just part of the fabric of our lives.  (And no, that is not a plug for cotton.)


I thought this photo (of a photo) was amazing, because it's a pile of dog pancreases in the background, and then the resulting vial of insulin in the foreground.  Yes, that's how many dog pancreases it took to score one vial of insulin back in the day. 


One of the first insulin pumps.  Wicked old school.


And one last shot of a very old insulin pump.  (I wonder what the "H" stood for - "Hug-a-Diabetic?")

If you're in the NYC area and have a chance to check out this exhibit, I highly recommend it.  It's amazing to see how far we've come.  (And for those of you keeping track at home, the sixth photo is from earlier in the week, of the meet up group!) 

October 20, 2010

A Friday Six on the Wrong Day.

The Friday Six:  Wednesday edition.  :)Too many bloggy bits to share today to wait for Friday.  So here's today's Friday Six ... only the Wednesday edition.  :)

1. 
The ADA I grew up with wasn't exactly known for it's outreach to the type 1 community, and to be honest, I always felt that their methods were antiquated.  Until very recently, when I met Dayle Kern and listened to her speak passionately about the efforts being made by her organization (the ADA) to reach out.  And the proof is in the post pudding, it seems, because the ADA has started their own blog.  With Dayle at the forefront of the ADA's social media outreach, I think things are going to start looking up for Big Red.  

2.  Also, there's a new meet-up group being put together in the DFW area in Texas.  Lindsey Guerin, blogger extraordinare at Blogabetes, is heading up the charge.  Here are the details:  "We'll be meeting once or twice a month. Anyone is welcome...diabetics and their families included. We'll be doing events like movie nights, bowling, dinners, and just general support. Our first meetup will be October 20 at 7:30pm, hopefully."  You can reach Lindsey at lindsey_guerin@yahoo.com.  For more information, check out the TuDiabetes group and the Facebook page.  (And October 20th is tonight.  I'm sorry for putting this up last minute!)

3.  The crew at Johnson & Johnson grabbed some videos at BlogWorld last week, and they happened to catch me after my panel was completed.  The interviewer wanted to know what prompted me to start my blog and what motivates me to keep writing it.  So I answer that question, at a freaking breakneck speed.  (Apparently, the three hour time difference of Las Vegas and the constant flow of coffee made for a fifteen thousand word per minute delivery.)  Here's a link to the video!  (And here's hoping they post the outtake, where Manny Hernandez decided it was a good idea to make faces at me while I was recording, causing me to laugh like a lunatic and ruin the whole take.)

4.  And in other video news, there's a new video up at Animas, talking about the battle for better body (because that's such a journey at this point - the gym is not bringing me back to my jeans fast enough) and featuring a special guest at the end.  (Actually, three special guests, if you count Creepy Kerri Impersonating a Low Blood Sugar and also the Abby cameo.)

5.  On Halloween morning, Team Six Until Me will be walking for the JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes.  So far, fundraising has been a little scattered, but the Sparling family is ready with their costumes, so we're halfway to prepared.  :)  If you are able to make a donation to our JDRF team, I'd very much appreciate it.  And if you aren't able to donate this year, please consider walking in your own local JDRF walk team.  Every little bit helps, be it awareness raising or fund raising. 

6.   Lastly, Huffington Post blogger Riva Greenberg is bringing the spotlight back to diabetes with her post "Curing Diabetes:  How Close Are We?" Her interview with Diabetes Research Institute's Dr. Camillo Ricordi relays a lot of terrific information, but this one quote from Dr. Ricordi is enough for me:  "I started this work to cure diabetes. My goal has not changed. I will keep working until I get the job done." 

Enjoy your Wednesday - I'm off to rake the yard.  (Fall is so aptly named a season.)

September 24, 2010

The Friday Six: Incessant Ramblings Edition.

Friday Six!  Because the cold I am coming down with is taking me prisoner and my brain is fried and I'm trying to figure out how to not pass this cold onto the baby.  Also, I like run-on sentences. Onward!

1.  The ePatient 2010 conference is taking place in Philadelphia next week, and I'm happy to be joining one of the panels as a guest.  Any Philly locals around on Tuesday night for a meet-up?  Let me know in the comments or by email and hopefully we can set something up!  (Note:  I love Philly.  I love Rocky, therefore loving Philly is a must.)

2.  Here's a photo from a Toronto film exhibit that I forgot to upload:

I'm melting ... meeeeeeeelting...

That's one badass melted Vader.  End of item No. 2.

3.  The editorial team at BlogHer asked me to contribute a guest post about the great, elusive "cure" of any kind of diabetes.  And I was happy to oblige, with "There is No Cure for Diabetes."  If you have a chance to skip over to BlogHer and check the post out, that would be awesome.  (And yay for Drew Carey for dropping the pounds.  Now he and Halle Berry can have ice cream sundaes together at night and talk about the great uncured.)

3.5.  I like this ALOT.  A lot.  (If you haven't visited Hyperbole and a Half, you're totally missing out on some of the oddest, most frantically amusing internet cartoons I've ever stumbled upon.)  And, just for the record, I love that an ALOT looks like a VW bus shaped wooly mammoth.

4.   The idea is simple.  "As diabetics we spend a lot of time at the doctors. For the next year, let's all take a picture of our waiting rooms every time we have a diabetes related appointment. So take a picture (at your own risk), post the date, and whatever else you want to share about the picture and let's see just how much time is spent Waiting With Diabetes."  George and Sara have a new group on Flickr called "Waiting with Diabetes," and the concept is just that - photos of waiting rooms.  (And am I the only one who is convinced one of the members will end up photographing another member of the diabetes community without realizing it?  ;) )

The Friday Six:  September 24, 2010 edition

5.  And now that BSparl is older and more mobile, I'm looking to find a few good diabetes support buddies that are local to me.  (Like the Fairfield County Dinner Ladies whoI miss terribly!)  If Providence, RI is driving distance for you and a monthly meeting sounds like something you'd like to be a part of, drop me a note!  We're looking to start in October, and the more the merrier!  (And if you already responded on Facebook, I've got an email out to you today!) 

6.  Today is Friday.  Friday the 24th.  Of September.  Which means that the limited release of Buried is tonight, and that the nationwide release on October 8th is only two weeks away.  That, to me, is pretty damn exciting.  And because I am a very proud screenwriter's wife, I wanted to share a few links to some press bits I've really enjoyed:

Roger Ebert's review of Buried.
Chris guest blogs on MTV.
USA Today writes up a review of Buried.
Ryan on Leno.
The Huffington Post reviews Buried.
Access Hollywood reviews Buried.
Vanity Fair calls Buried One of the Best Films of the Year.

Proud = me.

And with that, I'm off to blow my nose and store vitamin C tablets in my cheeks like a squirrel.

(Note:  This edition of Friday Six has seven items.  Because I'm spaceshot.  Game over until Monday - I'm going back to bed.)

August 06, 2010

The Friday Six: Writer's Block.

The Friday Six:  August 6, 2010 edition.I felt it circling, like a shark (ooh, Shark Week!).  Writer's block.  It sucks.  I have it, big time.  But thankfully I'm alone in my blockiness, because there have been some seriously awesome posts rolling around the diabetes blogosphere of late.  This week's Friday Six is all about sending some link love the posts I've really enjoyed in the last few weeks:

1.  George at Ninjabetic writes so earnestly that I always find myself actually leaning in towards the computer.  His writing draws me in, that literally.  And his post, Just Love, made me want to hug my baby and my husband (and even the cats) all at once together.  

2.  This post, from Karmel Allison at A Sweet Life, is one that I read over and over again, letting the words wash over me as I remembered the expectation of expecting, all muddled with excitement and fear and intense love.  Powerful poem, Karmel.  Thanks for sharing it with us all.

3.  And Scott made me laugh out loud when I read his post, See Other Arm.  I love reading about diabetes meet-ups (love attending them, too!) and the pictures from his latest one gave me a grin that wouldn't quit.  Click through to see what I mean!

4.  Another post I really enjoyed was Chris's post about the pure evil of Pop-Tarts.  Personally, I don't think Pop-Tarts are discussed enough on the diabetes blogosphere (I think we're all afraid to admit we've eaten this crap - even though we all have at one time or another), and now I'd like to see what a cookie dough Pop-Tart is all about.  Though, after reading the nutritional information, I should wait until my pump is fully stocked. ;)

5.  I'd be hampering efforts for feline world domination if I neglected to link out to this post on Tales of Rachel, including guest ... meows? from the homonym pair of Casey and K.C., hosted by the always-hungry Perl.  Since Siah enjoys a good guest post here on SUM now and again, I have a high appreciation for other cats who are willing to tap out a few words on the ol' laptop.

6.  This one, admittedly, is my favorite of the bunch.  This post, from Jacquie at Typical Type 1, is called Beauty and the 'Betes, and it's a diabetes fairy tale.  And I love it.  Love, love, love and if you haven't read it already, you are seriously missing out on something that seems ripped from the Brothers Grimm but instead came from the Islets of Jacquie.  (What a horrible pun, but I already warned you - I have writer's block.)  Definite must-read.

Enjoy these posts from the talented writers of the diabetes blogosphere, and have a great weekend!!

July 16, 2010

The Friday Six: Glucose Tabs and Talking Carl.

The Friday Six:  July 16, 2010 editionI think this is the third Friday Six in a row, which either means I'm really efficient or so jumbled in the brain region that I'm only able to concentrate on six things at a time.  (A seventh thing would make everything go poof.) 

1.  First things first:  Clara Barton Camp still rules.  But they're running low on a very crucial supply these days:  glucose tabs.  Camp is in session through the end of August and the supply of glucose tabs at CBC is slim.  They need a hand, if you can.  If you work at one of the companies that makes glucose tabs and you are able to make a donation of tabs to the most wonderful place in the world, please email me at kerri (at) sixuntilme (dot) com.  (And if you are a SUM reader and you're inclined to donate a few jars of glucose tabs to CBC, you can click here to visit the Dex4 store and make an online order.  The CBC mailing address is:  Clara Barton Camp, c/o Health Center, 30 Ennis Road, PO Box 356, North Oxford, MA 01537-0356.)  Please - and THANK YOU!!!

2.  And second things second:  A SUM reader has a question about resources for a teacher in her school system who will be responsible for a type 1 kindergarten student this coming school year.  Here's her question:  "What I am looking for is information we all need to know. What blogs, web sites, or books should all adults, in a responsible position here, be aware of.  It is the teacher who will bear most of the responsibility here for [diabetes-related] decision making. I would like to get everyone ready for September and will appreciate any tips you can give. The child's mom is justifiably nervous sending her baby off into the full day world of school."  So do you guys have any sites or books that you can recommend for this teacher?

3.  Thirdly - are you ready for D-Feast Friday?  (What's D-Feast Friday, you ask?  Hang on, I have that answer here somewhere ...)  Looks like Karen, Lorraine, and Elizabeth have teamed up to create this very cool d-blog initiative.  DETAILS!  "We invite you to blog about your favorite recipes on Friday, July 23rd.  Does your recipe have to be low carb?  Not necessarily, since we know that everyone's bgs react differently to foods.  Our hope is that by sharing ideas, we can each walk away with a few new wonderful recipes, although we know not all recipes will work for everyone.  Blog about your recipe on the 23rd.  Feel free to include pictures of you cooking, and/or of the final meal, and any special techniques you use.  Have fun with it! (If you'd rather simply link to a favorite recipe that's already online, feel free to do that as well.) Nutritional information is always welcome, particularly carb counts with defined serving sizes, but also calories, fat and protein if you know it. If your recipe is low carb, gluten free, low calorie, vegetarian or vegan, please indicate this in your title so that people looking for these types of meals will be able to reference pertinent recipes quickly."  For someone like me, who can't effectively make ice, this D-Feast Friday could be something that saves my life.  Or at least my marriage.  ;)

4.  (Holy cow, this is a long Friday Six already.)  Fourthish, the No-Sugar Added Poetry Book is DONE and is available for you to purchase through the Diabetes Hands Foundation.  I'm very, very proud of this book, both having contributed a poem (this one) and served as an editor on portions of the text, and I believe this is a gorgeous example of what our community is capable of sharing with the world.  If you haven't checked out this book, click here and get your own copy!

5.  Fivey:  Don't leave pacifiers out on the counter or the cat will find them and bite holes in them.  Stupid cat.  (And stupid Kerri for leaving tempting plastic tasty bits out for kitteh disposal.) -- >

Oh come on, Siah.  Get away from that thing!

6.  And six - Does Talking Carl come as a Blackberry app?  WANT.  (The video of Two Carls pitted against one another made me laugh so much that buying an iPad actually seemed like a good idea.) 

Fin!  I'm out.  See you Monday!

July 09, 2010

The Friday Six: Weird Links.

The Friday Six:  July 9, 2010 editionWeird links - I haz them.  And what better way to share them with you than a Friday Six

1.  Children's shows are awesome.  I love Sesame Street.  (The Elmo's World theme song gets stuck in my head for hours.  And even though Big Bird is a bit of a whiny bitch, I still like him.)  I love Word World.  I love this weird show called Peep and the Something Something because Peep is this tiny bird with a huge head, stick legs, and no body.  Cracks me up.  Thank goodness these shows are tolerable because they're the new background noise of my life.  The only thing missing is The Muppet Show, which I must buy the DVDs for BSparl so she can experience the magic of Muppets.

2.  If you ever wanted to see the story of George Washington put to creepily-animated video, here's your chance.  I don't know what else to say about this, other than nightmares occurred as a result.

3.  In other video news, this video is completely kick ass.  It's a video of Ginger working out with Scott at the Friends for Life conference.  And Scott TOTALLY rocks the Turkish Get Ups.  (Scott - Chris agrees.  Those are hard moves!  But you really worked it!  And also, I can't believe I just linked to a site called "Wanna Be Big.")

4.  I also wanted to let you know that I have new columns up both at dLife (Generation D) and on the Animas site (Sweatin' With Rudolph).  But now that I've seen that video of the Turkish Get Up, I think I need to try it instead of working out while dancing with the baby.  I'm pretty sure I could pull off a Siah Get Up.  Or maybe I can do a BSparl Get Up?  (Even though she's asleep right now.  I'd rather she not get up right now.)

5.  Twitter is a good time, but I have had it with all the app names started with "tw."  Case-in-Point:  TwimeMachine, which is a service that lets you peek at old Tweets.  You can also find out When Did I Join Twitter (1,235 days ago for me - embarrassing, as is the grammar in this sentence).  And My First Tweet, which shows you the first Tweet you ever made.  (Apparently, mine was about suiting up with the Dexcom, back in 2007.)  But I wasn't able to find everything I was looking for - does anyone know of a site or service that shows you all the Tweets you've ever typed?  Nerdy request, yes, but I'm on the hunt.

6.  And lastly, I received a black eye from this:

Kicked my ass, this thing did.

This child's clothes hamper came with an actual warning on the side of the package, something about being veeeeery careful opening the tightly coiled structure.  I scoffed at this warning, and then the frog leapt up and tagged me in the face.  It looks friendly, but it has a decidedly treacherous agenda.  Beware of baby items!!

June 25, 2010

The Friday Six: Elephant Edition.

The Friday Six:  June 25, 2010 editionThe Internet has so much STUFF.  And it's not all diabetes-related. (Even though you'd be hard-pressed to believe otherwise, if you hacked in to my Google searches throughout the week.  Actually, if you hacked into my searches, you'd think that I'm devoid of rational thought, because this morning I was telling a story to BSparl about how monkeys in the jungle organize their bananas, which prompted me to Google "can bananas be organized," and I found a whole list of famous monkeys.)

So here's some STUFF that I've come across this week, as part of another Friday Six:

1.  I remember hearing a bunch of children's songs when I was a babysitter in high school, but nothing as awesome as Eric Herman's Elephant Song.  I've watched the video about ten times already (three times when BSparl was asleep, so I can't even use her as an excuse) and the song is permanently embedded in my head.  He has no idea, but he's going to be a very prominent part of BSparl's musical landscape.  Him ... and The Beastie Boys.

2.  It's a known fact that PWDs are their own brand of superheroes.  And thankfully, our own Chris Bishop has created the most badass blogroll of all time, depicting different diabetes bloggers as members of comic lore.  (And the best part is that we all look foxy, despite c-sections. :) ) Check out his Diabetic SuperHeroes blogroll and marvel (ha!) at his creation!

3.  And in the diabetic mommy "good news" file, Nic at A Sweet Journey Into Motherhood has given birth to her healthy and absolutely gorgeous son.  Please be sure to skip on over there and see his beautiful pictures and give Nic some comments of congratulations.

4.  Also, I wanted to share some good news from the Sparling front.  Chris has been working with M. Night Shymalan on an upcoming project, and I'm excited that I can finally tell you guys.  More details are at Deadline New York, if you want to click through.  We're excited, and as always, proud to share with the d-community!!

5.  This is kind of nerdy to include, but I really think it's neat.  The Boon bottle drying rack makes my kitchen look like I actually have some undead greenery in it.  Which is a unique and rare moment for a plant-murderer like me.  (See also:  The Experiment that failed miserably.)  I like this thing - it's bright, cheery, and keeps the baby bottles from smelling odd because they didn't dry properly and therefore forcing me to wash them before I use them.  (No, this isn't a paid endorsement.  And yes, I purchased this myself at my local Target, where dreams are born.  Love Target.)

6.  And lastly, have you guys checked out the Australian forum, Reality Check?  Well the forums have bloomed into a whole website, called the Type 1 Diabetes Network.  The forums are still there, but there's a whole pile of information for a newly diagnosed diabetic or a veteran one, including a great "starter kit" that can has resources for any PWD.

And now I'm off to find more famous monkeys.  Have a good weekend!

June 04, 2010

The Friday Six: Weeks.

The Friday Six:  June 4, 2010 editionToo many ramblings for a decent post.  A Friday Six?  Don't mind if I do ...

1.  There are a few new "Life, Uninterrupted" posts up at Animas - Ready For Lift Off! and What Keeps Me Motivated. Would love to have you check them out!  (And also, have you uploaded your Pump Triathalon Relay video?  Click here to visit that page and see what I'm wiling to do to embarrass myself.)

2.  You know those calendars that have photos of foods that are fashioned to look like little puppies or spaceships or other "not food" sorts of things?  I am endlessly amused.  And then I found this site - My Food Looks Funny - and now I am in Internet love.  Also debating submitting this photo of the pesto cat from Barcelona.

3 Back in the bloggy day, I remember doing some meme about fears.  And ranking high in my list of fears (the list includes sharks, bears, and planes, in no particular order) are balloon animals.  Well, not so much the animals, but the sound they make when the balloons squeak against one another and then POP.  Cannot stand popping balloons (which made my post-honeymoon return to work even scarier!).  In efforts to conquer my fears, I've been watching these balloon animal how-to videos (like this one on how to make a little yellow balloon cat).  The site looks like it was built on GeoCities, but I love it.   That main page guy?  Has a giant balloon snake.  Can't beat that.

4.  I'm checking in at Joslin today for my first post-pregnancy appointment, and I am not looking forward to the A1C results.  After a few weeks of motherhood, my blood sugars have seen some wicks highs and lows.  And not just on rare days.  Numbers are pinging all over the damn place, and both rhyme and reason are absent from the explanation.  I'm hopeful that my endocrinologist has both patience for my lack of commitment to the sparklemotion that is my diabetes these days, and that she might have some suggestions on how I can even out these numbers.  We shall see in a few hours.

5.  I know lots of us are already part of the TuDiabetes family, but are you participating in the TuAnalyze project?  Basically, it's a way to both track your A1C and, if you're comfortable with sharing your data online, you can see how your numbers compare to others in the diabetes community.  The map of the United States is lighting up, state by state, once enough people from each state participate in the program.  Here are the details on the TuAnalyze program, which is in partnership with Children's Hospital Boston, and how you can get involved!

6.  BSparl is seven weeks old now, and every week, I notice something new.  A few weeks ago, she started turning her head at the sound of our voices.  Then she was locking onto my eyes while I fed her.  And just a few days ago, she gave my both my first smile (awww) and my first unexpected pee shower (awww ... ful).  Life in the Sparling household is sleepless and messy, but decidedly adorable and cuddly.  We love her.  :)

Off to Joslin - but one last thing:  The FeedIt's back.

April 09, 2010

The Friday Six: Bed Rest Edition.

It has been ages since I did a Friday Six ... December, I think was the last time.  So I'm well-overdue.  Here's the latest link-fest from the murky depths of my email inbox.  :)

The Friday Six:  April 9, 2010 edition

1.  There's a new issue of diaTribe out for March, which includes a great column by a nine year old boy with type 1 diabetes named Boaz.  Reading about diabetes through the words of a child really touches me, because I remember being that age and thinking so many of those thoughts.  Hell, I still think a lot of those thoughts now, as an adult.  "There have been some scary times, like the time I was rushed in an ambulance to the hospital because my sugar levels went so low that I became unconscious. But there have been a lot of great times too, when I don’t think about my diabetes at all," he writes.  You totally need to check this column out.

2.  Also, and sorry for the self-pimpage, but Six Until Me is up for a Dosie.  (Which, every time I say the word, makes me think of a dosie-do and a ho-down, of sorts.)  This blog has been nominated as Best Patient Blog, and if you are inclined to vote for SUM, thank you!  You can click this link, scroll down to "Best Patient Blog," and submit from there.  You'll also notice that there are a LOT of diabetes-related sites that have been nominated in different categories, so the d-community is totally representing.  (And representing!)

3.  In bed rest news, there's another bed rest fella out there, only he's been in captivity for over 102 days.  That is epic, and I can't even imagine.  To top it off, he's taken his stir-craziness to a level of creativity that blows my mind - Christiaan Van Vuuren IS the Fully Sick Rapper ... and he is something else.  Check out his YouTube videos and you'll see what I mean.

4.  Also, because YouTube is sometimes my only source of entertainment these days, I watched this video:  When Good Bananas Go Bad.  A reader sent it to me and I've now watched it at least four times.  Because a giant banana, waddling viciously after people as they run in terror from him at the mall, was enough to cheer me up considerably.   

5.  There are two new "Life, Uninterrupted" columns over at Animas, which I'd love for you to check out.  (Even though I'm feeling very interrupted these days ... interrupted every two hours by people checking in here and stealing my blood.  Six days to go, and I hope these days speed by like kitties with jetpacks.  What, you've never seen kitties with jetpacks before?  You're missing out.) 

6. And lastly, based on discussions on Twitter last night about the Rhode Island accent, I wanted to share a link to the Quahog Guide to Rhode Island Language Stuff.  Because it hits all the basics, including that whole "grinder" thing.  Study up, ya'll. 

Time for a scintillating weekend - my last before motherhood starts.  AHHHHHHHH!

December 11, 2009

The Friday Six: A Smattering.

The Friday Six:  December 11, 2009 editionHappy Friday!!  This week has flown by (all the weeks lately have seemed to do that) and the holidays are already upon us.  Hanukkah starts tonight, and Christmas is only a few short weeks away.  And there's a ton of posts that have cropped up in the diabetes community that I've been meaning to share, so here's The Six!

1.  My favorite Ninja has interviewed his favorite ninja on The Bad Blog - George's interview with Daniel "Ninjabetic Jr" Schaffers is too awesome to miss.  You have to love a kid who wants to have a Ninjabetic Convention.  (Personally, BSparl and I would attend that one!) 

2.  Our blogger friend across the pond, Caroline, is planning her wedding and has just found her wedding dress.  Her post brought tears to my eyes, because I remember the moment that I found my wedding dress, and then the realization that an insulin pump needed to be somehow fit into the mix.  Make sure you read Caro's post - and I can't wait to hear about more of her wedding planning!

3.  Today is the last day to submit to Amy's Holiday Survival Sweepstakes - so if you have a holiday horror story, or a victorious moment at the family table, email them to Amy at info (at) diabetesmine (dot) com.  There are a lot of cool prizes you can win, so check it out!

4.  And this article, in the St. Petersberg Times by Robert Steinbeck, starts with "I am scheduled to begin dying on Feb. 1, 2010."  This man, a type 1 diabetic for 22 years, is losing his COBRA coverage on that date, and his assessment of the insurance situation resonates for people in our community.  Regardless of your view of the healthcare reform debate, Mr. Steinbecks article is a must-read for the diabetes community.

5.  And if you have been wondering what the pirate eye patches on Twitter are all about, you need to read Kelly's blog post about her one-in-a-million, non-diabetes-related vision loss experience.  Kelly has been beyond brave in the face of this, and her positive outlook and ability to make us laugh despite her pain makes her a true hero.  Drop her a note and let her know she's loved by the diabetes community - because she so is.

6.  Another diabetes blogger has found herself under a doctor's care this holiday season - Rachel has just come out of surgery for an ovarian cyst, and she's recovering slowly, but surely, at home (with the help of her husband and her pile of cats).  Stop by her blog and let her know you're thinking of her!

That's it for now - enjoy the weekend!!

October 23, 2009

The Friday Six: Diabetes Community Bits.

The Friday Six:  October 23, 2009 editionThere are some cool things that have cropped up in the diabetes community this month, and I'm a little late in announcing them here - but BSparl is a mind control baby, so my will is not entirely my own these days.  ;) 

Here's a quick Friday Six, highlighting some new adventures in the diabetes community!

A leaf.World Diabetes Day is coming up on November 14th, and the crew at TuDiabetes are marking the day with The Big Blue Test.  It's similar to the test-in from a few months ago, and here's how you participate:

1. Test your blood sugar.
2. Run, jog, walk the dog or do anything you’d normally do as part of your exercise routine for 14 minutes.
3. Test your blood sugar again.
4. If you are a member of TuDiabetes click on the home page banner and share your readings and what exercise you did between them. If you have a camera, you can also add a photo of your reading(s) or you exercising.
5. If you have a Twitter account, post your readings on Twitter (use the #bigblue hashtag) and link back to: http://bigbluetest.org.

Even though November 14th is a Saturday, we can all still raise our collective voices and post our numbers at approximately 2 pm.  For more info, visit the TuDiabetes Big Blue Test page.

A leaf.And have you checked out The Diabetes Resource, a diabetes website database put together by Gina Capone and her team?  You haven't?  Dude,  you MUST.  Visit The Diabetes Resource, which is the self-proclaimed "first and only Ultimate diabetes directory for everything diabetes. The Diabetes Resource covers everything you need so you can find what you want, when you need it most."  You can find diabetes bloggers, diabetes events, and learn more about the management team. Nice job, Gina and team!! 

A leaf.In self-pimpage news, I'm now contributing to the MyDiabetesCentral team at HealthCentral, so if you have a chance to skip over and check out my shareposts, that would be stellar.  (Latest one involves a broken ass.  Yes, the truth hurts.  A lot.  In the hindquarters.)

A leaf.Also, also, there's a new diabetes site called A Sweet Life:  The Source for the Healthy Diabetic.  It's run by a woman named Jessica Apple (I do so love people with fruit as their last names, especially in these days of vitamin C cravings ...) and she and her husband, Mark, are both living with type 1 diabetes.  "We know that diabetes is a very serious and frightening disease, but we also know that life with diabetes can be normal. It can even be sweet. Rather than think about diabetes in the negative sense of an illness, we prefer to think of it as our lifestyle. And we are determined to be healthy diabetics. We believe we are succeeding, and we hope that the information we provide through this site will help you do the same."  You can check out A Sweet Life and get to know this new member of the diabetes community!

A leaf. dLifeTV is looking for some new people to feature, and I wanted to pass the word on to you.  Here's what they're looking for:  "Have you had a specific life experience, event, or revelation that inspired you to turn things around and get better control over your diabetes? If you were previously neglecting your diabetes care and 'got inspired' to get healthy, we want to hear from you!"  For more information, click here.

A leaf.And lastly, I'll be at the ePatient2009 conference in Philadelphia on Monday and Tuesday, so if you're attending, please say hello!  You can catch me on Twitter @sixuntilme or by email.  Or if you just look for the slightly potbellied girl with the enormous purse, you'll find me that way, too.  ;) 

Have a wonderful weekend!!

September 04, 2009

The Friday Six: Twitter Silliness Edition.

The Friday Six:  September 4, 2009 editionTwitter is a place where I share a lot of diabetes factoids, like blood sugar issues, Dexcom stuff, and moments of sheer diabetes stupidity.  It's also where I post a lot of things that have NOTHING to do with ... well, anything, really.  Pure nonsense.  It's a potluck of information that isn't totally diabetes-related, but touches upon that theme, as I wrote in my SUM Musings column this month on diaTribe. 

And for those who aren't participating in Twitter discussions and that whole mess, I wanted to share some links here that went up on Twitter.  Because they're fun.  And because it's Friday and quite frankly, I don't want to think about anything serious today.  :)

So here's the Friday Six:  Twitter Silliness Edition.   

1.  I don't remember a damn thing about the 70's (I was only there for a year), but I do remember every single moment of this clip from Sesame Street.  "One, two, three, four, five, sixseveneightnineten, eleven, twelve." And it wasn't until I looked the clip up that I realized the song was sung by the Pointer Sisters.  Trivia!

2.  My coworker sent me this cartoon, and I laughed hard because it reminded me of all the "MICE!  CURED OF TYPE 1 DIABETES!" headlines that I've seen on almost a daily basis for the last 15 years.  (Warning:  The language isn't very warm and friendly in this cartoon, so click at your own risk.)

3.  I don't have much of an explanation for this, other than seeing references to drunk hamsters in my newswire feed made me laugh.   

4.  When someone told me about a video with a singing cat and a rapping dog, I was ready to be amused and then move on.  But this video made me grin because the yawning cat really looks like it's belting out the moody tune about criminals.  (Unfortunately, there are many of these singing cat videos, so I wasted much more time watching them than I'd care to admit.)

5.  Does anyone else remember the evil Monchichis?  Okay, maybe not "evil," but in retrospect, these things were a bit creepy.  And the boy Monchichi looked exactly like the girl Monchichi, save for a hair bow, which makes me concerned about their reproductive abilities.

6. And THIS.  I am ABSOLUTELY printing this out and attempting to build one.  The first papercraft we did at the office (ceiling cat) remains taped to the light fixture above my desk to this day.  I will build hundreds, and cover my office in paper cats tickling the cardboard ivories.  Because the video alone on this page was enough to bring me a weird, warm glow of joy.  :) 

Looong weekend on tap, and I plan to spend it with friends and family.  Have a great weekend, enjoy the links, and I'll see you next week!

June 05, 2009

The Friday Six: Stuff on my Twitter.

NERD ALERT:  This post will reference Twitter.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with Twitter, it's a websiteThe Friday Six:  June 5, 2009 edition that serves up 140 characters worth of people's thoughts and links, illustrating just how much time people are spending on the Internet talking about their need for, oh, let's just say coffee. Or diabetes.

And apparently I'm spending some quality time there, too. 

I wanted to share, here on SUM, some random bits I came across over the course of the last week or so.  It's a Friday Six, Stuff on my Twitter edition.  (Nerd!!!!!)

1.  This is a "literal video version" of Total Eclipse of the Heart.  My co-worker found this and passed it on to the rest of us, which left the editorial department in tears from laughing for at least five minutes.  Favorite parts: Slo-Mo Dove, zoom camera under the arch, and "this classroom has a fan." 

2.  Goths in Hot Weather.  I've seen my share of "goths," but I've never thought about how the summer heat must affect their personage.  Sweaty goths must have tough summers, but man are they fun to read about . (This one, with four of 'em standing in the Pacific surf, brought me great, mascara-smudging joy.)  

3.  Yes, I missed the original Ellen clip.  And no, I hadn't seen this Hawaiian Chair infommercial until my boss's daughter sent it my way.  I want to try this thing out so badly and see if I can stay on it for more than a minute.  It could be like the bar rodeo bull, only for work.  Pondering ...

4.  And THIS freaking hysterical (and supposed) ad from a 1955 issue of Good Housekeeping had me and my college roommates giggling like idiots.  I can't even wrap my head around this.   "Speak in a low, soothing, pleasant voice." "A good wife always knows her place."  Oh dear.

5.  Rambo on a unicorn?  Don't mind if I do.  Seriously.  I'm getting one of these on my forehead.

6.  And finally, there's that FML (F*$% My Life) site and usually the posts on there are really crass and not the best stuff to share with everyone.  But this one was so cute and so sweet that I want to find the person who wrote it and hug them.   

Oh the Internet - always at the ready with something entertaining to click!

May 01, 2009

The Friday Six: May Day!

I must thankfully admit - blood sugars have settled down a wee bit (thanks to a 150% basal rate increase that I'm not changing until I'm sure the cortisone is out of my system) and my wrist might be feeling a little better, so things are looking much sunnier in my corner of the Internet today.  About damn time. 

It's time for a little Friday Six action:

1.  Last night I had the opportunity to attend the JDRF Spring for a Cure event at the Metropolitan Pavillion in NYC.  I haven't been into the city in a few weeks, so it was kind of fun to ride the train in and get a little "aaaah" over Grand Central again.  I met up with Gina Capone and we spent a few hours checking out all the trappings, from cheesecake to white wine.  We ran into my former coworker Jon and his wife Lindsey, fellow blogger Allison Blass, and some of JDRF's finest.

Kerri and Aida - chilin'.

The JDRF knows how to throw an event, as the place was packed with people all passionate about diabetes research and a cure.  Including Soprano's star Aida Tuturro, who I spent some time talking to.  (She's a hot ticket!)  Aida has type 2 diabetes and was featured on dLifeTV a few seasons ago.   

2.  Also, best-selling author Brenda Novak is a friend of the diabetes community, thanks to her Novak’s 5th Annual Online Auction for Diabetes Research.  According to the press release, "The auction is held each May is a labor of love for her son who has lived with the disease for most of his life. It is also a month-long online event featuring lunches, dinners and one-on-one meetings with celebrity authors, world-class getaway vacations and state-of-the-art gizmos and gadgets."  And this year, my friends at the Diabetes Research Institute are the sole beneficiaries.  Pretty darn cool.  Visit the auction site and start bidding.  It all benefits a cure!

3.  Today is the last day to enter the Diabetes Mine 2009 Design Challenge, so if you're still thinking about entering to win $10,000, you'd better get cracking!   Submissions can be sent in until 11:59 Pacific time, so there's still time to enter. 

4.  The new issue of diaTribe is out with an all-new SUM Musings - complete with cameos from my mother and my brother talking about diabetes awareness for those who aren't diabetic themselves.  If you aren't a subscriber already to diaTribe, sign up.  Seriously.  I know I'm a columnist there and am very biased, but Kelly and Co. do a fantastic job andThe Friday Six:  May 1, 2009 edition I'm a proud supporter of their work.

5.  In a little plug for my office, the production team at dLifeTV is looking for a few good diabetes stories to potentially feature on the show.  Currently, they're seeking college students with diabetes, married couples dealing with diabetes in their relationship, and diabetics struggling with alcoholism.  Check out the call for submissions and see if we're looking for YOU.

6.  And in a little plug for yetis, I think I may have spied one from the train last night.  We were just about to pull into Harlem 125th when I looked down and saw a person sitting on a bench outside.  Wearing a full fur suit.  Like a real fur suit - no joke.  I am not unconvinced it wasn't a yeti.  Which leads me to SkyMall.  Which leads me to this video.  Then this one.  Which leads me into a brain tangent I wasn't prepared for. 

Holy digression.

I'm off to buy a yeti.  Or maybe just take a nap.  :)  Either way, have a good weekend!

April 03, 2009

Friday Six: Linky Stuff.

The Friday Six:  April 3, 2009 editionI'm overdue for a Friday Six, and I have received a lot of information lately from the diabetes media maven and their rapid-fire emails.  So I will drink the majority of a pot of hazelnut coffee and try to wrap my head around the day.  You click, if you want.  :)  

1.  SymCare (a company I had not heard of until I received an email from their media contact) has just received FDA approval for their cleared the new inTouch™•diabetes program.  inTouch is a diabetes management system, like online logbooking.  According to the website, "The system collects blood sugar readings from a glucose meter and wirelessly transmits them to a secure web site."  The system provides personalized educational content from Johns Hopkins University, diet and exercise programs from e-Diets, and an incentive program in partnership with amazon.com, so they're tied in with plenty of big companies.  I can't tell exactly how this program will work (it sounds fancy and involved, judging by the press release), but I'm hoping for more details in the coming weeks.

2.  Looking to take some small steps for you, and some giant leaps in your commitment to diabetes management?  David of Diabetes Daily and Manny at TuDiabetes have collaborated once again for Simple Steps for Health. Here's the blurb:  "Its life-changing goal is to promote small things that someone with diabetes can do to live a healthy life. We invite you to teach others how to take simple steps to improve their health - without spending a lot of money or time."  Submit your ideas on how to make simple, effective changes and win some cool prizes!

3.  Medtronic, with Dr. Fran Kaufman, is holding two webinar sessions about making use of current technology to better control diabetes.  On April 15th, Dr. Kaufman will offer up her thoughts on insulin pumping, CGMs, and other technologies, and then there will be a live Q&A.  Sessions are at 6 PM EST and 9 PM EST, respectively, and you can sign up through the "Real Diabetes Control" Medtronic website.  (Also, Medtronic, I'm looking to speak with someone from your team.  Please email me at kerri (at) sixuntilme (dot) com.  Thanks!)

4.  dLife (hat tip to my employer) has a new community space that's gaining traction and also keeping me very busy at work.  The network was built to help bring together dLife's active forum boards and give members a place to call their own.  I realize this is a big plug for my office, but if you haven't joined the dLife community, today is a good day to check it out.  Why, you say?  Because social networking improves office productivity - ABC says it is so!

5.  Even though World Diabetes Day isn't until November 14th, it's on the top of many lists these days, including the people at Boston Scientific.  They've come on as a sponsor of WDD and have launched a big ol' campaign to raise awareness, tapping the holy social networking trinity of YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook.  As the email from their campaign outreach coordinator stated, "Boston Scientific’s WDD social media campaign is designed to help spread information about diabetes to as many people as possible, in support of WDD’s current theme of education and prevention."  I'm into that.

6.  And lastly, this video made me laugh.  Out loud.   "I don't particularly appreciate that," may be the line that put me over the edge.  It's nice to start a Friday with some Brimley cat.  :)

More site updates being done this weekend, so if you have any problems accessing, it should be solid again by Monday. 

Now I need to get more coffee.  Mmmm ... coffee ... 

February 20, 2009

The Banana Bunker Friday Six.

The Friday Six:  February 20, 2009 editionWhat a hectic morning already.  Between an early start with my dLife email and then a quick commute to Boston for the day (complete with low blood sugar on the sidewalk of the city, making me look like a homeless person who stole a laptop), I'm glad to be finally chilled out and getting things done.

Not much going on diabetes-wise, but I do have some fun crap to share with you this morning.  Here is this week's Friday Six, starting off with this:

1.  The Banana Bunker.  I can barely remember what made me Google bananas at work earlier this week (Shhhh, dLife ladies.  Don't tell Helen!), but once I found this photo, I couldn't stop laughing.  A banana bunker, in four jazzy colors.  It will "keep your fruit safe until you're ready to go!"  It will also look so much like an inappropriate toy that you'll be sure to embarrass yourself by sharing it with the the whole Internet.  Like now.  Hi!

2.  The Hero Factory.  Want to see a superhero version of yourself?  Yes, you do.  I spent altogether too much time mucking around with this (I had to see what I'd look like with laser beam eyeballs!), but here's my final version.  (Over there.  On the right.)  Do not mess with me.  I know the guy from Reading Rainbow.  (Hat tip to SicklyKitty!)

3.  Holy Sh*t.  This is a mega-dog.  I actually whispered "Holy sh*t," under my breath before reading the post beneath this photo.  Do dogs actually get that freaking big?  Not normal.  If a cat was that big, it would be put in a zoo.  Or at least a stable.  Check it out and see if you can contain your expletive.

4.   OMGWTFBBQ.  I tend to find out about things after they've already peaked, but that doesn't make them any less funny to me.  My coworker threw a "OMGWTFBBQ" at me this week and it caused great joy for my brain.  The illustration on the Urban Dictionary makes it even better.  Have you heard of this before, or am I mentally still on my TRS-80 computer from Radio Shack?

5.  The Yip Yips.  I purged this YouTube clip from my brain on Twitter last week, but I must share it here.  I remember the Yip Yips from back when our neighbor used to babysit for us.  This bit with the telephone gets me every time.  "Brrrrrrrriiiiiiing!"  "Um ... brrrrrrrriiiiiiiing!  Uh huh, uh huh.  Yip yip yip yip."  You remember this, don't you?

6.  And this last one is just for me.  Totally self-serving.  Do any of you guys have experience with a Bamboo Fun?  I bought one this week and haven't had a chance to fiddle around with it, but is this a good tool for photo editing, etc?  Any informal reviews?

That's all I've got.  (And still laughing about that obscene banana bunker, but anyway.)  Have a great weekend!!

February 06, 2009

It's a PR Friday Six.

The Friday Six:  February 6, 2009 editionIt's the Friday before my birthday (turning 30 on Sunday - holy crap!), and I'm feeling very happy today.  Here's a quick Friday Six for you before I disconnect from the ol' Internet and escape to a bed and breakfast with my husband for a long weekend!

Here we go ... 

1.  Nick Jonas has a good PR team, and they're reaching out to the blogosphere.  Nick and the folks at Bayer are selling diabetes dog tags to benefit his foundation.  According to the email I received from his agency, "The dog tags can be purchased for a donation of $5 at NicksSimpleWins.com. All orders placed before this Friday, February 6, will be delivered in time for Valentine's Day. Bayer donates a portion of the proceeds of each dog tag to the Jonas Brothers' Change for the Children Foundation."  Visit NickSimpleWins for more information!

2.  On the meter front, our friends at Agamatrix have their new Jazz meter available through mail order diabetes supply companies.  Jennifer at their PR agency said, "WaveSense Jazz is available exclusively at www.diabeticcareservices.com for patients with insurance and at www.diabeticexpress.com for patients without insurance and is free with the purchase of 100 test strips or more."

3.  And on the dLife front, a whole new season of dLifeTV starts this Sunday - featuring Jim Turner (who I LOVE).  Be on the lookout this season for some familiar faces from within the dLife office - including my stupid head rambling on and on.  Tune in at 7 pm eastern on CNBC and get your fix. (Personally, this has to be my favorite clip of all time, because it includes both Adorable Jim and Cutest Old Guy on the Planet.  Beware of becoming smitten!)

4.  And if we're talking about video clips that I love, I have another favorite other than Old Guy.  This clip from the Ellen show made me cry, I laughed so hard.  Something about the blunt perspective of Gladys on the phone makes me very happy.  Also, watching people laugh makes me laugh.  And then there's this mess, from the Pink Panther movie with Steve Martin.  I can't help it - the last bit of "de burger!!" makes me laugh so hard every damn time.  Poor guy looks like he's trying so hard!

5.  In completely random news, apparently, Siah really gets around.  That annoying little piglet has gone and set up her own Facebook page -  and I can't be held responsible for anything she posts.  (Who am I kidding?  I'm like a pageant mom.)  She's aiming for world domination.

6.  And now I'm done.  I've run out of things to say.  (Except that here's a photo of what happens when you're working on a project for dLife and the IT department is left unattended at your desk for more than three minutes.  Pesky pranksters!)  Okay, now I'm really done.

I'll be offline until Tuesday morning and with very, very limited access to email over the weekend.  In the meantime, Siah will be manning the blog.  Oh.  Dear.  Lord.  See you Tuesday!

January 16, 2009

Appointment'd Out.

The Friday Six:  January 16, 2009 editionWhat a freaking long week, with a doctor's appointment every day and way too much medical analysis.  This week is a very personal Friday Six, and here it is:

1.  On Monday, I had my A1C drawn.  I've been to this specific lab before, and the same woman has drawn my blood before, so I didn't have a lot of anticipatory nerves.  But when the lab technician said, "Okay, you have lost all of your color - put your head down, Mrs. Sparling," I knew I wasn't as badass as I wished to be.  (And I also winced when I pulled off the cotton ball she had taped to my inner arm ... I'm such a wuss.)  But thankfully, the results were a full point lower than my last A1c, leaving me with a 7.5% and a reachable goal of <7% for April. 

2.  And Tuesday, I had a dentist appointment.  Those of you who have been reading SUM for a few years know that I have an unholy fear of the dentist, but it is warranted.  My teeth are so sensitive and require barrels of novocain to make them numb, so fearing the wielder of pointy metal hooks in my mouth is a rational fear.  However, my new dentist is FANTASTIC and brings me no pain.  I had my teeth cleaned (first time in ... ages, unfortunately), no cavities, and I have already scheduled another cleaning for April.  I'm considering the dentist hurdle cleared for the time being.

3.  Wednesday has me sitting at the dermatologist's office to have a new freckle on my breast examined.  (Whoa, Kerri.  TMI?)  Yes, that is way too much information, but since when did I start censoring myself?  (Since ... today?  Maybe I should start.)  Always in a constant state of medical over analysis, I decided it was best to have it checked out.  So I spent Wednesday morning having a kind, eccentric, little bald doctor look at my breast with a magnifying glass.  Definitely a "first."  This little issue ended up being nothing to worry about, but now I can check "awkward sharing moment with the Internet" off my list for the week. 

4.  Thursday had me with dilated pupils at the retinologist's office.  Of all the appointments this week, this eye one was the least ... awesome.   

"Look up ... okay, now look a little to the left ... Kerri, up again ..."  Dr. Retina kept shining the light in my left eye and making a "hmmmm" sound under his breath.  My face was cupped by the eye examination machine.

"You can't fool me.  I know you found something.  Spit it out."  My eye doctor and I have a very good relationship, and we talk like we're about to go grab a beer together.

"Small little something.  Hemorrhages in there that I want to keep an eye on."

"Pun intended?"  Without moving my face from the chin rest, I reached over and grabbed a Kleenex because I immediately started to cry.  But I was oddly okay with the news.  Maybe I've already had that bubble busted.

"It's okay.  But with you and your husband talking about maybe getting pregnant in the coming year, I want to keep close tabs on your eyes.  You've had diabetes for what, a million years?"

"Twenty-two years."  I smiled.

"Twenty-two years.  And your eyes look beautiful - barely a problem at all.  But I want to keep them that way.  Let's schedule an appointment to do a fluorescein dye exam before you and Chris are pregnant, just so we know exactly what we're dealing with."

"What is that?"

"We'll inject a dye into your arm, then do a dilation on your eyes.  The dye lets me really see what's going on in there with complete precision.  And with you, I do not want to take any chances."

"Okay.  So do I need to worry about this?  I'm worried.   You know I worry."

"You worry?  You do?"  The gentle ribbing was okay with me.  Soothed my anxiety a bit.  "You do what you're doing.  Work to keep your blood sugars controlled.  And think about taking some time off from all that work you do.  Maybe take a vacation?"

Fine.  So now I need to schedule a vacation.  Doctor's orders, you see.  ;)

5.  Now that these appointments are all behind me, I'm moving forward towards the next steps.  I am doing the pre-pregnancy clinic at Joslin in March, and Chris and I are working to get everything in order so that we can make our family-starting decisions based on factors other than diabetes ones.  It's an exciting time, and one I've been looking forward to my whole life.

6.  And in my only news-related bit of the day, this weekend is the end of the MedGadget awards, and thanks to all of your help and support, SUM is in the lead for Best Patient Blog.  I would be honored to win this award on behalf of every last one of us, so please keep spreading the word and voting!  :)  Thanks for everything, and hopefully on Sunday I can report that WE DID IT! 

I'm planning to spend the weekend hanging with my girl friends (finally seeing the Batman after a long absence!) and doing some recreational writing.  I hope you guys have a great weekend, and stay WARM!!

January 09, 2009

First Friday Six of 2009.

The Friday Six:  January 9, 2009 EditionNature has told me that we're getting another snow storm here in New England.  (I spoke with a squirrel to confirm.)  So before the snow starts to fly, I'll squeeze in a little Friday Six here.  There's a lot going on in the blogosphere, and I also need a few favors from my bloggy friends!

1.  First and foremost, and totally not diabetes-related, I saw a video claiming to host the "weirdest dog ever."  I watched it, and the video response, and laughed so hard.  Not just a "ha ha, that's so amusing," kind of laugh, but more the laugh that makes your face red and you cry and breathing is a challenge.  Coworkers IM  you from the other side of the building to see if you're okay because they can hear you bleating.  But I can't help it.  It struck me as that ridiculously funny.  Watch these videos and see if you can contain yourself.

2.  Via a coworker, I was introduced to Natalie Dee's webcomic site, which looked familiar to me because I've checked out Toothpaste for Dinner before.  Natalie's comics had me giggling this week - especially this one.  Spin through and see if you can find one that makes you snort.  Shouldn't take long.

3. Movies, movies, movies.  With the weather being fricking freezing, Chris and I have been huddled up and watching plenty of movies these past few weeks.  We've seen Slumdog Millionaire (4 stars out of 5 from me - very unique storytelling and I love Danny Boyle's style), Seven Pounds (4.5 - Will Smith is always good), The Day the Earth Stood Still (1.5 stars - Keanu Reeves, go back to Point Break), The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (3.5 stars - for the record, Brad Pitt as an old guy still manages to remain foxy), and the other night we watched Grace is Gone (3.5 stars - I didn't like the way it was shot, but the performances were stellar.  Such a crush on John Cusack).  I still want to see Valkyrie and Gran Torino, and with the snowy weekend on tap, that might be the plan.  Have you seen any of these flicks?  What's your take?

4.  Okay, onward to diabetes-related goodies.  The first is about the FDA Petition that I mentioned on Wednesday.  If you are inclined to sign, visit the official petition site and add your signature.  And definitely pass it on to anyone who has, or cares for someone who has diabetes!  For more information, check out Manny's video, Kelly's post, or Amy's post

5.  And I know I already posted about Diabetes365, but I wanted to repost and say that this Flickr group is still going strong.  I know a few of us have finished, and there are some new 365'ers (and some who have recommitted!) who are making the year-long project their own.  If you haven't checked out D365, skip over to Flickr and visit the group.  And if you want to see my finished slideshow, click here.  (Thanks to Bernard and Beth for spear-heading this project!!)

6.  And in a completely self-serving request, I'm asking for some help, too.  I've had the honor of being nominated as Best Patient Blogger as part of MedGadget's 2008 Web Awards, and I'm up against some big competition.  I'm also getting trounced.  :)  I'm the only diabetes blogger nominated, and I'm hoping to rally the community and help raise more awareness for the power of diabetes patient bloggers.  If you have a spare minute and don't mind helping out, please pop on over to MedGadget and cast your vote for SUM.  And THANK YOU!

That's all I've got for today.  Stay warm, New England - and for everyone else, have a good weekend!

December 19, 2008

The Snowless Snowday Six.

The Friday Six:  December 19, 2008 editionEveryone is bracing for the winter storm that's aimed at New England today.  Schools are closed, people are working from home, and cars across the region have their windshield wipers pointed to the sky.  Yet there isn't a flake to be found yet.  (Stop laughing - I am not a flake.)  It's a snowless snowday here on SUM.  Time for the Six!

1.  Okay, this is from a release sent to me by a PR company, but the horse's name was enough to make me want to write about it.  Apparently, Justin Credible, a horse that has the first documented case of type 1 diabetes, is now sporting an Omnipod.  The article also states that Justin may be hooked up with a Dexcom.  And after I stopped giggling at the name, I had to share with all of you. 

2.  Yesterday was our work Yankee Swap (where the heck did that name come from?), and since I came into work only for the afternoon, I missed the actual swap.  But, since my coworkers are awesome and always remember me, someone participated on my behalf.  And I scored this calendar:  Porn For Women.  (Google, have your fun with me.)  This calendar made me laugh my arse off, especially the last page, where the handsome hunk looks into the camera, smiling sweetly with the cat litter scoop in hand:  "Who would object to cleaning up after the cutest thing on four legs?" 

3.  Also, I wrote about stumbling upon the "secret features" (they're not so secret - I'm just clueless) on my insulin pump yesterday.  But you guys trumped me out big time, because I learned so many other tricks from the comments section that my technoJOY! was in overdrive.  Thanks for sharing your tips!

4.  In other news, I saw a release this morning about a "common infant virus may trigger type 1 diabetes."  The whole virus/type 1 connection has always been of interest to me, because I was diagnosed a few months after a weeklong bout with a high fever.  My doctors and my parents have always cited this "birthday virus" as the trigger for my diabetes.  If you have type 1, does your medical team site an illness as your trigger factor?  I'm curious.

5.  Re: D365, I'm in the home stretch for this yearlong project.  And it hasn't been easy.  Marking each day with a diabetes connection wasn't as difficult as I had hoped it would be.  Somehow, everything plays in to disease management.  Diabetes is truly a lifestyle, and the D365 project has proven that to me over and over again.  I have a lot of admiration for the D365 members who have crossed the finish line, and I'm hopefully joining their ranks at the turn of the year! 

6.  Lastly, since we haven't seen any snow yet here in CT, I found a cool online tool to make virtual snowflakes.  Check out this site and snip up your own snowflake in preparation for this blizzard that's a-comin'! 

Stay safe, stay warm (make bread and milk soup, like you do), and I'll see you on Monday.  

November 07, 2008

Listen to the diaBeat.

The Friday Six:  November 7, 2008 editionWell that title gets the prize for Worst Pun on the Planet.  It's Friday, I was up way too late last night trying to find a stupid purse, and I woke up this morning with Siah trying to faceplant into my collar bone.  Foolish Sausage ... but at least there's a Friday Six.

1.  ReliOn has issued a recall on some of their insulin syringes.  (Thanks to all of the readers who sent me a head's up on this one.)  According to the press release, ReliOn is "recalling one lot of ReliOn sterile, single-use, disposable, hypodermic syringes with permanently affixed hypodermic needles due to possible mislabeling. The use of these syringes may lead to patients receiving an overdose of as much as 2.5 times the intended dose, which may lead to hypoglycemia, serious health consequences, and even death."  Check the release to see if this development affects you.

2.  Last week, I wrote about the Hannah Montana and diabetes episode that the parents at CWD, and other folks as well, were fighting to have pulled by Disney.  And holy power of the diabetes community - it was pulled off the air!  Parents are pleased, some fans are disgruntled, and Miley Cyrus is now encouraging people to ... Drink Water, Not Sugar?  Not sure where she's going with this, but I'm curious to see.

3.  And because I haven't had a chance to mention it yet, I wanted to thank everyone who came out for the JDRF walk in RI on October 26th.  The day was absolutely gorgeous, and there were about 6,000 people at this year's walk in Roger Williams Park.  My mom, stepfather, brother, nephew, niece, sister- and brother-in-law, Chris's best friend, and my ever-supportive husband walked as part of Team Six Until Me.  I had a chance to meet a few RI readers, chat up some parents, and enjoy a nice lunch out joined by Chris's mother and grandmother.  Diabetes awareness has become a family affair, and I'm so honored and proud to have their support.

4.  This Sunday, November 9, marks the fourth annual D-Blogger Day.  The details are on Gina's Talkfest blog, but the general gist is this:  If you are a diabetes blogger, November 9th is the day we collectively come together and post about diabetes.  Sure, there are other things going on in our lives, and who wants to blog on a Sunday?  But D-Blogger day has been a tradition in this here blogosphere and I've been a proud participant for three years, so be sure to raise your voice on Sunday.

5.  And next Friday is World Diabetes Day - are you ready to mark the occasion?  There are events taking place all over the blogosphere and in the "real world," as well.  Will you dress in blue to show your spirit?  Will you blog about diabetes and educate others?  Are you helping to light a building in blue?  I'll be in NYC marking the day - where will you be?  Do you love questions?  Does it sound like I have upspeak?

6.  Wow, five very diabetes-centric things.  I think I need a little levity.  So I'll consult Le Sausweege.  I went to grab my work bag this morning and it turns out that Siah wanted to visit dLife.  She was sitting patiently in my bag, her little paws pressing the buttons on my cell phone.

Bring Siah to Work Day

Thanks, Sausage.  You aren't annoying at all.

Have a great weekend, and since it's NaBloPoMo all month long (ahhhhh!), I'll see you tomorrow.  And Sunday.  And all next week.  :)

October 10, 2008

Vroooom!

The Friday Six:  October 10, 2008 editionToday has been condensed into just a few little hours of productivity.  But I had a few things I wanted to share.  (Six things, to be precise.)

1.  Is anyone out there going to the BlogHer Reach Out conference in Boston tomorrow?  I will be there, proudly attending my first BlogHer event and helping raise the visibility of patient bloggers.  If you're in Boston for the conference, please email me and let me know - I'd love to say hello in person.

2.  Speaking of blogger ladies, my friend Dr. Val (formerly of Revolution Health) has launched her new site:  Getting Better with Dr. Val.  The site has an accessible tone, a great look, and is definitely going to be one of my regular Internet stops.  Val also offers up some seriously funny medical-themed cartoons, which I'm so happy to see because I feel that humor is a HUGE part of disease management.  A little laughter goes a long way.  Be sure to check out Dr. Val's new site!

3.  Dates and times for another Fairfield County Dinner are being tossed around - any new takers?  Looking to do something in the first or second week of November.  Meet-ups are happening more and more around the blogosphere (check out Scott's Second Annual one!) and it's a great way to put a face and a voice with the blogger's we're reading.  Email me if you are available, and interested!

4.  Just a reminder:  Have you signed your name to the Google Doodle petition?  As of this morning, we have 3,097 signatures.  Let's see if we can crack 4,000 by the end of the day!  So coworkers, friends, family members, random people reading this blog, and cats across the world (use those paws and claws for good), sign it and raise your voice!

5.  In completely unrelated-to-diabetes stuff, this link (found on Twitter - imagine my shock) made me giggle.  Actually, it made me laugh out loud, so loud that I think I startled co-workers.  Nothing like the relationship battles between what appear to be overgrown Dots candies

6.  And in just a few hours, I'll be making the worst financial decision of the year and heading off to RI to pick up my new car.  (THANK GOD - the Jetta and I have not even been speaking for the last month.)  I'm excited and terrified, all at once.  And I know I'm going to be a lunatic about keeping it pristine because, well, it's part of my OCD charm.

Have a good weekend!!! 

September 26, 2008

It's Friday. That Means ...

The Friday Six:  September 26, 2008 edition... The Friday Six.  It's time for a week-end wrap-up, and to share some of the latest bits with you.  I hope you're all having a good week.  I am so ready for the weekend (and the debates tonight)!!!  I'm going to just jump right in with number ONE ...

1.  Last week, I posted a photo on D365 of Tickles the Tapeworm, and just a few days after posting it, a package of Parasite Pals stickers was delivered to my office, courtesy of my Flickr friend, Stinky_Harriet (aka Liz).  THANK YOU, LIZ!!!  You totally made my day, and I shared these stickers with my editorial team.  (We thought they were digustingly awesome.)  If you're following the Diabetes365 crew over on Flickr, you may have seen some of the wonderful photos from Liz.  Click through and check out the photos, and give some love to Sara, who is on the cusp of finishing her 365 days!! 

2.  In CGM news, there's a chat with Aaron Kowalski on Monday, September 29th, in the DiabetesTalkFest chatroom.  Dr. Kowalski will be answering your questions about the JDRF CGM trial that was in the New England Journal of Medicine last week, so check it out if CGMs are on your wishlist.  (It's on mine!)

3.  (Full disclosure:  This next bit has it's fair share of we in New England call "wicked bias.")  My husband has teamed up with some of his old buddies from the fitness world to create a cool and informative health and fitness site called I Look Like Fit.  There's a ton of useful information on the site, including workouts, diet ideas, weight loss tips, and even a social networking page called - wait for it - FitHeads.  So, if you're looking to tone up or trim down, this new site and its social networking sidekick could be a good fit for you.

4.  This Sunday, Fairfield County is playing host to the JDRF Walk For A Cure, and the dLife team will be there.  (I'm hoping it doesn't rain all over our heads during the walk, but we're badass enough to take the risk.  Diabetics don't melt!)  Are there any SUM readers who will be walking on Sunday?  If you're there and you see a cloud of white dLife t-shirts, come by and say hello!  :) 

5.  In cake-related news (this may be my favorite segue ever), the popular site CakeWrecks has its first comment controversy going on, all about a cake shaped like an insulin pen.  Personally, I find this cake to be amusing.  The comments on this post, however, are less entertaining.  Plenty of diabetic-bashing going on in there, from laying down guilt on people with type 2 diabetes to the stereotype that diabetics on the whole can't eat anything but carrot sticks and ... dreams, I guess.  If you want to weigh in on this mess, feel free.  Stop the ignorance, if you can.

6.  And finally, I vlogged.  I vlogged from my stupid car, because time is limited this week but I've felt delinquent as a vlogger (and I've been enjoying the ones from SuperG and Sara and Windy, and Landi even joined the fray!) and I needed to catch up.  If you skip on over to my YouTube channel, you can find my latest attempt at vlogging.  And, like George mentioned in his post today, I'm open to any questions because, quite frankly, sometimes I have no clue what to say.  :)

The weekend should be rainy here in New England, but it's still the weekend, and that makes it awesome.  Have a good one, and I'll catch you on Monday!

September 19, 2008

Arghhhh, Me Hearties.

The Friday Six:  September 19, 2008 edition

Holy late post, but better late than never, right, me hearties?  (Oh, this pirate crap will be the very death of me.)  Jumping right into this week's Friday Six!

1.  Yes, it's Talk Like a Pirate Day.  In celebration of this silliness, I offer you the Pirate Translator, some pirate jokes, and a Twitter avatar, courtesy of my extremely silly brother:  Kerri the pirate.

2.  The JDRF is still taking applications for the 2009 Children's Congress - but not for long!  The deadline for application is October 6, 2008, so if you and your child are interested in applying and representing the diabetes community before Congress, now is the time to apply.  Visit the JDRF website for more information.

3.  Another D-related event is the First Annual Diabetes Rockstar Cruise, brought to you by the folks at Diabetic Rockstar.  According to Sara, a SUM reader and a member of the Diabetic Rockstar crew, "The most exciting part about the cruise is that Carnival has a program called Cruising for Charity, where we will be receiving a portion of the proceeds for Fight It! our charity arm at Diabetic Rockstar.  Our funding goes to uninsured, in-need and newly diagnosed diabetics who need supplies and additional help."  Unfortunately, I won't be attending this event, but if you're interested in learning more about this cruise, taking place next May, visit the Diabetic Rockstar website

4.  And in my own personal diabetes news, I've been embroiled in the battle with Oxford Health of Connecticut for CGM coverage.  Fun.  (Sarcasm.)  I have a solid insurance representative at Dexcom who is helping me get all the paperwork together for my external appeal - yes, this is the one I have to send them a CHECK for, greedy bastards - and I'm working with my endocrinologist on a letter highlighting pre-pregnancy planning and the need for tighter diabetes control.  This is a paperwork nightmare, and now I understand why lots of people never get to this stage of the appeal, because it's so damn complicated.  BUT I am moving forward and will file this external appeal by the end of next week.  Hopefully this will overturn my previous three denials.  In any event, I'm almost positive they won't refund the $25 filing fee.  Pricks.  ;) 

5.  On the Children With Diabetes site, there's a short video about Friends For Life 2008, and you'll find a smattering of diabetes bloggers in there, including Sara, Heidi, Bennet, and me!  (And I look seeeeerious, since they caught me in the pregnancy seminar and I was all panicked ears.)  Check out the video!

6.  And I'm still woefully behind on vlogging, but I'm hoping to get a clip up here by Monday or Tuesday.  Next week is pretty nuts - I have plans for dinner in the city, I'll be at a seminar at the UN midweek, and I'm gearing up the dLife crew for our JDRF walk next weekend - but I need a little face-time.  I'm sort of short on vlog topics - any ideas from you guys?  For now, all I have is this sort of crummy quality clip from The Swell Season show on Wednesday.  I have another one, of one of their new songs, that I can post this weekend after I pull it from my KerriBerry

For now, I'm off to RI for yet ANOTHER wedding this weekend (btw, Chris and I have been married for four months as of yesterday - holy cow!) and to spend time with the family.  You guys have a great weekend!!!

September 12, 2008

Le Friday Six.

(That title's for you, CALPumper!) 

The Friday Six:  September 12, 2008 editionI need a break.  :)  Here's The Friday Six, because if I had to string more than three sentences together, my brain would turn to ice cream cake.

1.  I'm looking forward to the fourth (had to edit - there have been three already and my brain went to mush on this fact) Fairfield County dinner on Monday, September 15th.  So far, there are about seven people coming and I'm excited to meet everyone.  If you live in the Fairfield County area and I missed your email, drop me a line at kerri (at) sixuntilme (dot) com and I can send you the specifics.

2.  Also, the first winners of the TuDiabetes "Word In Your Hand" project are up, and they are remarkable.  (My personal favorite is the "secret" one ... very cool photo.)  If you want to get involved and submit your photo, check out the details on TuDiabetes, and say hi to Manny and Landileigh!

3.  And I'm proud to say that Blogabetes turns one year old this month.  I've had the pleasure of working with Carey, Nicole, Julia, Lindsey, SuperG, Rebecca, Michelle, Kim, Andy, and Scott over the last twelve months, and I am always impressed and inspired by their writing.  If you haven't visited dLife to spin through their posts, you're really missing out. 

4.  In news I'm confused about, I've received several emails from companies asking to make me "part of their blogging team" by adding my posts to their RSS feed.  I don't mean to sound daft, but is that a good thing?  I know plenty of other bloggers have been approached by these kinds of companies and I'm still on the fence about whether or not that's a good thing, since I've also heard that Google penalizes you if you reproduce blog content across the wilds of the Internet.  For my fellow bloggers - how are you guys handling these requests?  Do you let them add your feed?  I am unsure how to handle these requests and I don't know enough about Google to guess if this is a good idea or not.  Help!  I need brain power from the blogosphere. 

5.  dLife has been subjecting me to cute overload this week, starting first with some of dLife's finest teeny dogs and culminating with a crate full of newborn baby chicks.  My co-worker has chicken business (I know) and he brought in a dozen baby chicks for the morning, so we could all coo and chuckle over them.  They are so damn cute.  I stumbled upon my co-worker, diligently answering emails with a baby chick in his pocket.  I love my office.  It's productive, yet eccentric.  I dig that.

6.  And thanks for your uplifting messages yesterday.  You guys, with a little help from Fudgy the Whale, made a bit of a dreary day much brighter for me, and I really appreciate it.  I know I've said it before, but this community is one of the best things to happen to diabetics since ... well, insulin, and you all make this journey a little easier.  So thank you.  And go get an ice cream cake, because damn that makes everything better. 

Unfortunately, no time to vlog this week.  But next week, I will definitely think of something worth waxing on about and will fill your computer speakers with nonsense once again.  Until then, have a great weekend and I'll bother you on Monday.  :)  

August 29, 2008

I Love The Dirt.

The Friday Six:  August 29, 2008 editionIt's been almost a month since my last Friday Six, so I thought I'd dust off the photoshop file and revive it for this fine Labor Day weekend.  You know why?  Because I'll be in the woods this weekend.  Camping in the wilds of Maine.

Stop laughing. 

So yes, Chris and I are making the long trek to Maine this weekend to spend our holiday in a tree.  I mean in the wood, camping.  And before you collapse into laughter, I have camped before.  Back in high school, my friends and I used to go camping in the summer all the time.  I love hiking, and there's something so serene about being in a place where there's no television blaring, computer whirring, or people connected to any kind of network.  We're camping out in Acadia National Park one night, then staying at a bed and breakfast in Bar Harbor the next.  I'm very excited to disconnect from EVERYTHING for the weekend.  And it's my first camping trip with the pump, so I'm hopeful that I can keep it clean and safe from the freaking bears. 

In the spirit of camping, long car rides, and packing (oh my!), I've realized that a simple walk in the woods requires some serious backpack stocking-up.  We hit the grocery store last night and I bought several protein bars, high-carb power bars, and a few sports bottles of juice.  At home, I took quick stock of the supplies I need to bring "just in case," like insulin and syringes in case my pump craps out in the woods (i.e. stops working, not craps out in the woods ... you know what I mean), extra infusion sets, test strips, and a cooler to store all the cool-temperature supplies in.  Diabetes means hoping for the best and planning for the worst, and for me, that translates into not packing light.  (We did pack marshmallows, a chocolate bar, and graham crackers, of course.  We are going camping, after all, and what's a night around the campfire without s'mores and insulin?!)

In quasi-political news, a certain flash file made me laugh out loud.  Something about the iced coffee and the grinning faces made my day.  And Biden doing the Cabbage Patch in the back seat.  See for yourself and blame my brother for sending me the weirdest things on the internet.

Team Six Until Me is walking again at the Rhode Island JDRF Walk on October 26th!  If you are in the RI area and you'll be at the walk, please come by and say hello!  Just look for the rag-tag crew of silly people, anchored by my grinning head and the grinning heads of my friends and family. 

Last week, Chris and I visited NYC and went to the Top of the Rock.  Yes, it's a big ol' tourist draw and I can't pretend to be anything more than a tourist.  (I'm from Rhode Island - we hardly ever leave the borders of our own damn state! Living in CT is like breaking all the rules.)  Anyway, going to the top of Rockefeller Center was very cool.  The view, as you can imagine, is remarkable.  Of course we took a pile of pictures.  We haven't had much time to get into the city lately, but I'm always impressed with what it has to offer every time I go.

And unfortunately, I haven't had a chance to do a vlog this week, but I'll do one early next week.  And I think I may need to finally respond to the gauntlet laid down by Mr. Bennet himself - for the Whack-A-Meter challenge.  I have plenty of old school meters in my home that don't work and I don't think there are even strips being made for them anymore.  It may be time to take out my aggressions on those symbols of diabetes.  Anybody with me?   It may actually feel good.

Have a good three-day weekend, and I'll see you on Tuesday!  (After I pick the spiders out of my hair.  Oh good Lord.)

August 01, 2008

Flaking Out Friday Six.

The Friday Six:  August 1, 2008 editionWhirlwind doesn't even begin to describe the last two weeks, but I'm trying to recap bit by teeny bit.  From adventures with web-camming (There you go, Google. Just for you.) to Manny Ramirez being traded, it's time for The Friday Six.

1.  A few months ago, I mentioned a Fairfield County D-Dinner meet-up, and several people emailed.  Then, because I am hopelessly disorganized and was in the middle of planning my wedding, I lost track of planning that event.  I'm very sorry, and still hopelessly disorganized.  :)  But I'm trying to set it up again, and am looking at having the dinner sometime in late August or early September.  If you are still interested, would you please drop me (another) line at kerri at sixuntilme dot com?  If it's okay with the potential attendees, I can create an email list so we can figure out the details via email.  Thanks!

2.  Also, adding a little Canadian flair to the diabetes-theme, have you heard of Team Diabetes?  Skip off to Orlando this coming January and join Buzz Bishop and the 95 Crave Team Diabetes Crew to raise funds and awareness for the Canadian Diabetes Association.  For more information, check out the Canadian Diabetes Association and throw some support to our neighbors to the north.

3.  I'm very eh about this:  Manny Rameriz?  To the Dodgers?  Granted, he's one of the best ballplayers on paper, but boy is he a "wicked pissah" (thanks, Julia).  For the real-deal details, without even a smidge of bias, check out Boston Dirt Dogs.  (And keeping with the Boston news, do you want to see what your site looks like written in the ol' Boston accent?  Here's how SUM readsDo yours!  Valley Girl may make you laugh out loud for real.)

4.  Total side note:  On my way to lunch, I heard "Crazy In Love" on the radio.  As I was leaving lunch, I heard "Ring The Alarm."  I love Beyonce.  She is my musical guilty pleasure.  Please share yours, so I'm not forced to have my face burning in shame all alone.  I also like Yanni.  Help!!!

5.  In some TuDiabetes news, there's a new video about seeing diabetes through the eyes of children.  As a former child with diabetes (now a pseudo-adult with diabetes), this video helps me remember how I saw diabetes, and how I saw myself as a result, when I was small.  Click here to watch the video on YouTube, and click here to get involved with the inititative

6.  Lastly, because I bought a webcam and have nothing but time on my hands (What? Lies, Kerri - lies!), I'm debating starting to vlog (video blog) here on SUM.  Only - here's the problem - I have no CLUE what to talk about.  I'm much more the wordsmithy-type than the talk-to-the-camera type.  But I love meeting other diabetics and am always so surprised when I hear their voices or see their faces.  Words are just one dimension to our personalities - the way someone sounds or the way they laugh really tells you alot.  I'm curious to hear what you guys would be interested in (or should I just give the camera to Siah and let her do her thing?).  In any event, forgive me for talking too fast, moving too much, and using lions for my own personal gain.  (The password is "sixuntilme")

Chris and I are excited to host Batman and her boyfriend this weekend - yay for friends who will drive all the way out here! - so have a good weekend and I'll see you Monday!  :)
 

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June 27, 2008

Jeff Vader Runs the Death Star?

The Friday Six:  June 27, 2008 editionIt's hazy.  Hot.  Humid.  Perfect weather for a snitt fart.  Or the Friday Six.

1.  Yesterday, I received my copy of Laurie Edwards' book "Life Disrupted: Getting Real About Chronic Illness in Your Twenties and Thirties."  I'm honored to have been a part of this project as one of the five people with chronic illness that she interviewed.  If you are living with chronic illness, or if you care about someone who is, this book should be on your bedside table. 

2.  So what are you up to on July 12th?  If you're a diabetes blogger and in the New England area, you should meet-up with Bernard and others at the first New England Bloggers Meet-up.  I'm trying my best to be there that weekend, but I know there will be plenty of PWDs peddling around.  Check out the events page at TuDiabetes for more events in your area!

3.  Also, July 1 has been dubbed CGMS Denial Day.  Have you been battling with your insurance companies for continuous glucose monitoring coverage?  I've been writing about my experiences with Dexcom and insurance coverage here on SUM, and I'm definitely not the only diabetic who is trying to gain coverage.  Should insurance companies be covering these CGMs?  Should the manufacturers be charging less for their product?  Share your thoughts on your blog next Tuesday!

4.  With the CWD conference coming up quickly (I am so excited to be attending this year!), it's time to brush up on your Disney with diabetes skills.  Thankfully, Bennet of YDMV has written a terrific tip sheet that's published on dLife.  Check it out - and also find out about how he cooked insulin in a fridge.  (Yes, really.) 

5.  In non-diabetes stuff, we're still doing wedding wrap-up.  This week has been busy - and FAST.  We've just heard from our photographer who won't have our photo disc and album to us until August.  ARGH.  In this digital, instant-info age, that time frame infuriates me.  But in better news, our thank you cards/emails are almost completed, but we received several gifts without cards.  If you sent something to my office and I haven't sent you a card or an email, PLEASE email me!  I want to thank everyone for their tremendous generosity and kindness - you are such an amazingly giving and wonderful community and Chris and I are so grateful for all of your well-wishes.  I want to properly thank everyone who thought of us!  (Especially whoever sent the cat wine topper thing.  I freaking love it and haven't been able to track down who sent it!) 

6.  And this weekend is going to be awesome, for several reasons.  First, we aren't going to be schlepping back to RI and spending hours on end in traffic.  (Boo on not seeing friends and family, but holy YAY for relaxing!)  We're off to see Wall-E tonight - because I am a five year old - and tomorrow night we're going to see Eddie Izzard at Radio City Music Hall.  I.  Cannot.  Wait.  We ordered these tickets MONTHS ago and I've been looking forward to it since.  I have loved Mr. Izzard for quite some time now and am thrilled at the opportunity see him perform - at Radio City, no less!!!

Monday, Monday, Monday ... I'll see you then.  :) 

June 20, 2008

Dexcom, Batman, and Gaseous Emissions.

The Friday Six:  June 20, 2008 editionWelcome to this week's edition of The Friday Six - your source for diabetes information, random websites worth checking out, and the occasional fascinating game about farts.  (Because farts are perpetually funny, despite my best intentions to grow up and act like the adult I'm supposed to be.)  Consider it "brought."

Uno.Now that my insurance appeal letter has been sent, I'm in the 30-day waiting game that Oxford Health plays.  I'm hoping that I don't need to go through a second appeal process, but I'm assuming that will be the case.  So while I wait for a response from my insurance company, I'm compiling data.  I've officially switched over to the OneTouch UltraLink, so now every time I test, I hear the subsequent "beeeep" of my pump receiving and logging the result.  When I upload my data this weekend, I'll be able to see what my numbers were and how my boluses correlated.  I'm also pulling records from when the paramedics were called in 2003 for a hypoglycemic episode and my last string of A1C results.  When the insurance company comes back with a "no," I'll have an arsenal of information to offer up.

2.  Also, the diabetes community is indeed a tight one - this was proven to me beyond a shadow of a doubt this week.  While I was away on my honeymoon, the dLife CEO met with a Dexcom representative in our area.  While they were talking, it came out that I worked for dLife.  Turns out that the Dexcom rep was someone from my diabetes past.  This representative is the woman who used to baby-sit me when I was young, when my parents went away on vacation.  Her son is a type 1 diabetic and she was the person who guided me and my parents through those first tenuous years after diagnosis.  Now, she's my Dexcom rep, and she's coming to hang out with me next week to discuss the finer points of Dexcom'ing.  Small world, eh?

3.  In decidedly non-diabetes news, I came across a link yesterday that really brought out the grown-up in me.  It's a very serious online game that deals with such mature topics as gaseous emissions and space exploration.  In fact, PuzzleFarter was one of the most serious links I've ever sent around my office.  No, it did not make me giggle like a five year old, silly.  (Hat tip to my brother, who continues to find the oddest damn things on the internet.) 

4.  Another link I've come across in the last few days has been the one where people are recreating their childhood photos.  Have you seen this?  The pictures are part of a site called ColorWars 2008 and the pictures are the "YoungMe:NowMe."  I love this one.  It makes me happy.  And this one just plain makes me laugh.

5.  Tonight we'll be trekking back to RI to hang out with friends and family, and to celebrate Batman's birthday!!  My superhero friend is ringing in her big day tomorrow and this is the first time in seven years I haven't been able to buy her the new Harry Potter book for her birthday.  Strange rite of passage.  But if you are feeling like wishing a happy birthday to the Batman friend, feel free to leave her some love in the comments section.  :)

Six!And lastly, this one last website almost caused me to end up on the floor in shock.  Prior to today, I wasn't aware that cat sharks existed.  Now I know.  And knowing is terrifying. 

Have a good weekend, Blogosphere!  :D  See you on Monday.

June 06, 2008

Scampering Paws Friday Six.

The Friday Six:  June 6, 2008 editionThere has been so much work going on this week that we're all in meltdown mode on a Friday afternoon.  Columns are being edited, podcasts are being uploaded, and deadlines are being met.  But there's an air of Friday meltdown in the office, which includes outbursts of laughter, iced coffee, and fun.  Time for a post-wedding Friday Six!

1.  There is a dog here in the office today.  Usually, this dog is extremely chill and very well-mannered.  But for some reason, today Lucy the Dog is training for a marathon.  She's been racing up and down the hallways, occassionally munching on a squeaky toy.  So every few minutes, you hear the frantic scampering of doggy feet, accompanied by squeeeeeeeak squeeeak squeaky. This is what it sounds like in my brain when things get very hectic.  Strange to see it and hear it happening in real life.

2.  We spent a lot of time last night loading up the honeymoon pictures to Flickr.  There are some fun shots of Chris and I horseback riding on the beach, dining on the beach, and enjoying the evening scenery.  We're proofing our wedding album and hoping to receive our photo disk from the photographer next week, so wedding day photos are coming soon.

3.  I received an email from Austin Cooper last night, asking for a mention of his medical ID site, Evasion ID.  He created these bracelets as medical alert jewelry that PWDs would actually want to wear.  Check out his creations - they are pretty cool.  And 10% of all purchases goes towards the JDRF, so there's a little charity involved in this venture as well.

4.  Also, Tandem Diabetes Care in San Diego, CA is launching a new insulin pump soon.  They're also sporting a new, yet almost completely empty, website.  I received an email from their team yesterday, looking to gain some traction in the blogosphere.  I asked them for some information on the product but they didn't have any they were willing to share.  Hmmm ... would've been better to have some product details instead of a "coming soon" website, but hopefully they'll have something to show us in the near future.

5.  Back in the world of diabetes social networking, Lindsey Guerin of dLife's Blogabetes has started her own diaebtes network on Ning - Diabetic Echoes.   According to the site, "Echoes wants to provide an international place for every diabetic to get information, support and ideas. We hope to provide new treatments, physician's information, emotional support and a global community to you."  Will another new network survive?  Only time will tell. 

6.  And Nick over at Diabetes360 is looking for a new name for his insulin pump.  As he is Waldo's godfather (oh just typing that sounds ridiculously silly, as the dog scampers by with the squeaky toy in her mouth one more time), I have a vested interest in the moniker assigned to Nick's pump.  If you're feeling a bit silly this afternoon, offer up some suggestions for Nick. 

This weekend will be filled with thank you notes, a visit to a few local arts fairs, and maybe a trip to the beach.  It's supposed to be 90+ degrees in western CT this weekend, with enough humidity to make Siah as flat and listless as a kitty pancake.  Stay cool this weekend, and for my friends and co-workers at ADA's 68th Scientific Sessions in San Francisco, have fun!! 

May 02, 2008

Broncos, Bolus, and Butters - OH MY!

The Friday Six:  May 2, 2008 editionHoly late Friday afternoon post.  But it's time for The Friday Six:  Broncos, Bolus, and (Nutter) Butters Edition. 

1.  Jay Cutler has been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.  I know - Jay Cutler, quarterback for the Denver Broncos!  (Note to readers:  I did not know that Jay Cutler existed until this morning.  I'm sorry - my sports knowledge is limited to Larry Bird and anything Red Sox.  I also keep typing "cutlet" instead of "Cutler" and now I'm craving a chicken sandwich.)  Another pro-athlete joins the diabetes community.  And so far I've seen "type 1 diabetes" called "a treatable form" (as opposed to the kind that eats people?) and "the more serious type."  Sigh.  Let the media blitz begin!

2.  My wedding day is just sixteen days away, and I'm starting to get all twittery with preparation and nerves.  This month's Generation D column is about how I'm preparing to manage diabetes while at the wedding - including hiding a tube of cake gel in the maid of honor's flowers.  Everyone's a little ninjabetic sometimes.  :)

3.  A few days ago, unannounced and almost hidden in the rose bush outside my house, a package from Medtronic did appear.  And inside of it, boys and girls, was a One Touch UltraLink meter.  (This sounds like a ridiculous fairy tale already.)  I'm going to do a ful write-up of the meter next week, but suffice it to say that this thing kicks ass.  Except for the first test I did, it's been accurate (within a few points of my Ultra2), quick to transmit, and it's familiar in that "Hey, it's a OneTouch" way.  Granted, it's huge, but I'm willing to give it a go.  I know a lot of diabetics in the blogosphere received this meter, too.  I'm excited to compare notes next week.

4.  Last night, I hit the lowest low I've had in a while:  36 mg/dl.  I must have overbolused after my post-workout snack.  It started when I was in the shower, as I stared at the shampoo bottle for a few minutes before I realized that my legs were shaking.  Nervous and alone in the house (Chris is away on business), I grabbed a towel and went out into the kitchen.  With waves of panic, nausea, and lethargy coursing over me, I consumed three tablespoons of honey and a pile of Nutter Butter cookies in what felt like one breath.  Thirty minutes later, I was feeling much better.  My blood sugar had cruised up to 212 mg/dl.  And my shirt was covered in Nutter Butter crumbs.  So much for trying to keep things low carb until the wedding.  Blast.

5.  Random:  This website made me laugh:  GraphJam:  Pop Culture for People in Cubicles.  Among my favorites?  The one about judging website author sanity.  And the one about shooting the sheriff.  These witticisms are quick and clever and I am so amused by this silliness.

6.  This weekend, once Chris returns, we will be doing seating charts, favors, and picking out the song to dance to for our first dance.  We don't have "a song," so we're on the hunt for a classy, lovely, and danceable song to debut as husband and wife.  (We do NOT want a song that has an awkward part in the middle, like Stairway to Heaven, where it gets all fast and is uncomfortable to dance to.  Avoiding that.)  Here's what we have so far:

  1. Ben Folds - The Luckiest
  2. The Frames - One Irish Rover
  3. Etta James - At Last
  4. Elton John - Your Song
  5. Billy Joel - She's Always a Woman
  6. Radiohead - True Love Waits
  7. Counting Crows - Colorblind

Do you guys have any suggestions?  I'm open to anything that's sweet, but not overly sticky.  And I so appreciate all of your help with this stuff.  I need to send thank you cards to everyone in the Blogosphere!  :)

I'm off to keep on truckin' towards my wedding day.  Sixteen days?  Ahhhhhh! 

April 25, 2008

Friday Six: The Short List.

The Friday Six:  April 25, 2008 editionNo intro.

1.  Last night I attended the premiere screening of Life For A Child in NYC, a moving documentary profiling children with type 1 diabetes who are living in developing countries.  I'll have a write-up for this next week, but suffice to say that there is so much work that needs to be done, both around the world and here at home.  I ended my evening with a low blood sugar as I left the screening and with mounting frustration on how much worldwide attention diabetes needs, yet doesn't receive.  More on this next week.

2.  The dTOEs that were sent in are AWESOME!  I'll be posting the dTOEs, Second Edition on Monday.  :)  If you have any others you want to add, pop them in the comments section for yesterday's post, or email them to me at kerri [at] sixuntilme [dot] com.   

3.  I spent at least a few minutes siphoning through this list of Smurfs to figure out which one I would be.  I think I'm Jokey Smurf (or Schtroumpf Farceur ... are they French or something?) - I love the idea of his alter-ego, the Masked Pie Smurfer, "a cloaked figure known for sneaking up on other Smurfs and throwing pies at them."  Which Smurf would you be?

4.  Speaking of blasts from the past, one of my favorite books growing up was The Monster at the End of This Book, Starring Lovable, Furry Old Grover.  Come on ... you remember this, don't you?  If not, here's a slide show of all the pages in this book.  I remember being terrified of turning the pages when I was little, entirely unsure of what the monster was going to look like.  I read it to my nephew a few years ago - as we turned the pages, he looked up at me with his big, blue eyes, put his hand on my wrist, and whispered, "Auntie, please don't turn the page, okay?"  The world keeps spitting out all this garbage but at least children's books are still wonderful.

5.  Want to be on dLifeTV?  We're looking for people in good health who have lived with type 2 diabetes for 25 years or more. Send our production team an e-mail and tell us about yourself, including your name, age, contact information, number of years living with type 2 diabetes, plus your thoughts on how you have handled your diabetes, especially what you have done to maintain good control.  Thanks in advance!

6.  It's going to be a long weekend, but not exactly a relaxing one.  Tomorrow night we have the pleasure of attending the wedding of two friends in Brooklyn, then a Cirque du Solelil show on Sunday night, then we're spending Monday in RI to finish up last-minute wedding stuff like finalizing the floral arrangements, the marriage license, our marriage classes, and my final wedding gown fitting.  May is right around the corner, and I couldn't be more excited.  :)

Have a stellar weekend, and look for the dTOEs on Monday!   

April 18, 2008

The Friday Six: Randomness.

The Friday Six:  The April 18, 2008 editionThis week has been very, very busy, what with the Raise Your Voice event on Monday, a pile of work at dLife, and not to mention that my wedding is exactly one month from today.  (Oh my goodness, one month?)  Welcome to the Random Friday Six.

1.  First things first:  the Raise Your Voice event was a huge success and there were so many posts across the blogosphere that were touching, educational, and several that just plain made me cry because they were so beautiful.  And I wore my RYV shirt to the gym last night and had two people ask me about it.  So, once again, I'm so proud to be a member of this supportive and inspiring community.  

2.  There are plenty of new articles on ye olde Internet about the power of blogging.  The health writers at SheKnows.com have profiled Six Until Me and how blogging can impact a chronic illness patient.  Studies are being conducted on blogging.  Articles have even cropped up, showing how bloggers are suffering the consequences of their 24/7 lifestyles.  Blogging is taking the world by storm (as we knew), and it's changing lives (even in Canada)!  We're part of a movement that's changing the face of business, and it's just simply awesome.

3.  On the work front, dLife has been nominated for a Webby Award!  Thanks to the power of a crack editorial team (ahem) and the incredible diabetes resource that dLife has become in the last three years, we've been nominated for Best Health Site.  It would be great if you could take a few minutes and cast your vote for dLife - for all of our diabetes lives. Voting closes on May 1st.  Thanks!

4.  In the land of mindless links, here are a few that have brought me great joy:  Ridiculously fat Garfield cat.  This comic from xkcd about social networking.   And this awesome link that spells out any word or phrase using funky letter photos.  Like SixUntilMe.  Or Kerri.  I was sucked into this for about 15 minutes.  Then I thought about David Bowie and had a quick "Let's Dance" office party.  Oh we put on our red shoes for sure.

5.  Grammar question:  I drink plenty of cold coffee with ice.  I call this concoction "iced coffee."  But I've heard - way too many times - this drink called "ice coffee."  Ice coffee?  This does not compute in my editor head.  Ice coffee?  Like little frozen ice cubes of coffee?  Blargh.  It's iced, right?

6.  After realizing how expensive a train ticket home to Providence has become, and after also realizing how long it's been since I've spent the weekend in CT, I'm digging in my heels and staying put this weekend.  No traveling.  No chaos.  (No eating anything fancy, either, because my final wedding gown fitting is next weekend.)  Maybe Chris and I will head off to the city for the day when he comes home from his business trip.  Either way, it's going to be mellowed-out central in my little world.  And that sounds pretty damn good to me.

Have a kick-arse weekend!  

March 28, 2008

The Friday Six: Weekend Prep.

The Friday Six:  March 28, 2008 editionShannon tells me it's snowing like 8 inches up in her neck of the woods.  My mother reports rain in Providence.  And it's chilly with a side of potential frogs raining down here in Connecticut - what the heck is up with this weather?  Here's the Friday Six for this bizarre-weathered Friday.

As I stated in my earlier post today, Children With Diabetes is now a part of the Johnson & Johnson family of companies.  See it ... look closer - it's diabetes, right there on the map.  Nice.  I'm excited to see how this will affect the diabetes community on the whole.  Big news!

In other diabetes-related news, April 14th is Raise Your Voice: Type 1 Diabetes Awareness Day!  There's a Facebook event if you haven't seen it already (and it's not hard to "attend," seeing as how this is a virtual event.)  Now that the troops are rallied, all we need is a logo ... and here's where you come in.  Bill over at EatSmart has offered one of his nutrition scales as a prize for our logo contest - that's a $75 value!   Here are the rules:

  1. Design a logo (the size cap is 200 x 300 pixels). 
  2. Include the event name:  "Raise Your Voice!" 
  3. Have fun designing it.
  4. Maybe have a snack while you're designing - apples are tasty.   
  5. Email it to me as an attachment to kerri [at] sixuntilme [dot] com with the subject line "LOGO CONTEST" no later than 3 pm on Thursday, April 3rd
  6. Grin because it's done and submitted.

That's it.  The winner will be decided on Friday morning and Bill (thank you, Bill!) will send you an EatSmart nutrition scale of your very own.

And one last thing on the scale:  After I posted my review of the EatSmart nutrition scale yesterday, Bill over at EatSmart gave me a call and told me that if you guys want to order your own scale, enter "KerriSentMe" into the coupon field during checkout on the EatSmart site and receive 10% off your order.  I thought that was right-kind of him - so if you're thinking about ordering a scale, score your 10% off, damnit!

I know many of you have seen the Gaping Void cartoons (this one is my favorite today), but did you know you can get business cards with these quippy little suckers on them?  I was unaware.  Now I am intrigued.  I like my business cards, but it would be kicking to have something so bizarre.  Food for thought.  And just as a sidenote:  I love these cartoons. 

Tomorrow is my wedding shower.  (Yes, I know I'm not supposed to know, but since I live out of state, I needed to know what day to come home.  So I know it's tomorrow.)  I know I need to be there at noon-thirty.  And I know it will be fun, because with my mother and my terrific bridesmaids at the helm, it's sure to be an awesome time.  Everything is happening very quickly now:  the bridal shower, then bachelorette party, then the last meetings with our vendors, then the rehearsal dinner, then the wedding ... I'm afraid if I blink, I'll find myself on the plane bound for our honeymoon.  I wish I could slow this time down so I could actually enjoy it!  Instead, I will blog it.  (This may be the mark of a blogging addiction.)

And six.  Ahhh, the final moment for me today before the weekend cracks wide open and swallows me.  This morning, at about 3 am, I woke to the sound of scritch scritching, coming from the bedroom floor.  I ignored it at first, thinking that it was just one of the cats lolling around.  But it came again, louder this time:  scritch scritch.  So I leaned up, looked to the floor, and saw Siah completely wrapped up in toilet paper.  She had completely unraveled the roll from the master bathroom, dragged the bulk to the middle of my bedroom, and made a nest in it.  Like an enormous hamster. 

I do not need a dog.  I have a Sausage cat who laughs at me.

March 21, 2008

The Friday Six: Spring Edition

Friday Six!Yay for Spring!  Despite the chilly temperatures outside, I've switched over to my spring coat.  Granted, I froze my ass off walking into work today, but yay!  It's spring!  I'm beyond ready for winter to be ovah (thank you, RI accent that I wish I had) and I can't wait to hit the beach this summer.

Okay, on to The Six.

1.  This is wicked cute, just in time for spring, and courtesy of a fellow AisledasherClick anywhere on the screen and watch the flowers bloom.  It absorbed my attention for at least ten minutes.  And now it's absorbing it all over again.  Mmmmm flowers ... I mean, doughnuts ...

2.  And in keeping with the complete nonsense theme, it's been a walk down the proverbial memory lane here at work lately.  Between a co-worker bringing in her son's copy of Harold and the Purple Crayon and discussions about whether or not Lady Elaine was an alcoholic (look at that nose and tell me she's not drinking daily in the Land of Make Believe), it's been random.  This randomness led neatly into the rediscovery of this memory:  Meow Meow Telephone.  I've watched this clip so many times that it's permanently stuck in my head.  If I could make it my ring tone, I would.  If I could get it out of my head, I would do that, too.

3.  In diabetes news, there's a new site for young people with diabetes.  (Aren't there always new sites?  The Internet - it dizzies me.)  According to Daniel, the developer of the site, "Young Diabetics started with a few college students trying to make a difference for their diabetic friends, family, and acquaintances."  Check it out!

4.  Chris and I are heading home to RI (again) for Easter weekend.  I'm hoping that, between our nieces and nephews and younger cousins, we'll score some colored eggs to take home.  I loved coloring eggs as a kid.  The Paas tablets in my mother's tea cups, all lined up on the kitchen counter, are the concrete memory of Easter that I have as a kid.  However, since we've all grown up and are out of the house, so many of those traditions have been lost.  Traveling for the holidays has become an unfortunate trend in so many families, my own included.  How do you keep hold of those family traditions when so much time is spent flitting from house to house? 

5.  Busy, busy.  That's the trend, or at least it has been for several months now.  But a co-worker recently sent me a link that could help make sense of the mess I muck around in all day long - Sandy!  Sandy is touted as "your personal email assistant."  Looks like it works along the same model as Twitter (with the @todo sending messages directly toThe Friday Six:  March 21,, 200 edition "Sandy") and by cc'ing Sandy on emails with sentences starting "Remind me to ... ", this service keeps a running tally of crap you need to do.  I haven't really explored this, nor do I have the time today to teach myself how to make sense of a new service, but it's an interesting idea.  Having my own intern would also be interesting, but do interns clean litter boxes?  Hmmm...

6.  And lastly, today is Chris's birthday.  Happy birthday to my supportive fiance, my best friend, and my hero. 

Have a great weekend! 

March 14, 2008

St. Patty's Six.

The Friday Six:  March 14, 2008 editionWhat a week.  And even though Monday is actually Saint Patrick's Day, I'm observing the holiday this weekend.  So here be the St. Patty's Six. 

HUGE news from Abbott yesterday regarding their version of the continuous glucose monitoring system: The Navigator.  I am itching to try this system out, too.  I am looking forward to the day when CGM models all but replace traditional glucose meters.  The power of real-time results is unparalleled, but we just need a company to make it work.  I'm curious to see how The Navigator compares against what we've already seen from Medtronic and Dexcom.

Also, the JDRF website is featuring a Blogger Roundtable discussion this week - and there are plenty of people from the diabetes community that have been highlighted.  Read the insights and perspectives offered up by Bernard, Scott J, Sandra, Amy, Gina, Scott S, Allie, Manny, and me!  Thanks to Allison for compiling these profiles. 

And thanks to a tip from Bernard, the first human trials towards a cure for established type 1 diabetes are on the verge of starting.  According to the release, "The first step in the human study, which is currently enrolling volunteers, is to determine whether the same strategy using BCG vaccination can be used to modify the abnormal autoimmune cells that are present in type 1 diabetes, sometimes called 'juvenile-onset' diabetes."  This is tremendous news, and I'm already checking to see if I could be a possible volunteer.  Exciting times, but I'm reserving my hope for once the trials produce some results.  Still ... pretty darn exciting.

On a knitting note (stretching for the segue), I came across these neat little knitted ... bodily organs thanks to this week's Grand Rounds.   The blogger over at FreshMD is the source for these images and highlights the creators of these crafts.  I'm impressed, and personally, I like the little corn-on-the-cob looking pancreas in a pretty butter yellow.

And with the last of the invitation list sent out to the printer and our invitations en route, I'm taking the weekend off from thinking about anything wedding or diabetes-related. I'm off to Newport, RI to celebrate St. Patrick's Day starting with the big parade and ending up ... who knows where. :)  My maid of honor is in charge.  I'm just happily following her lead and will do my best to not stress out about a damn thing.

Have a great (and safe) weekend and I'll see you Monday!!  (Editor's Note:  I just realized there are only five items here.  Whoops.  As a quick sixth, check out this wonderful tribute by SuperG about his father.  His post brought tears to my eyes, and made me want to drive home to RI and give my dad a hug.)

February 29, 2008

The Leap Year Six.

The Friday Six:  February 29, 2008 editionHappy Leap Year ... day!  (Sounds like kind of a crap holiday.)  Here are The Leap Year Six.

1.  Since I last Friday Six'd, I was trying desperately to minimize stress levels.  Over the last two weeks, I've been working less at night, freaking out less at work, and peppering my days with less insanity.  The results?  I'm breathing easier.  Just acknowledging the stress made me deal with it better.  And posting about it helped, too, because disclosing my desire to chill out held me accountable.  I exposed myself to the internet (have fun with that one, Mr. Google) and I was obligated to follow-through.  Sooooo, after that long-winded explanation, I'm feeling pretty chill, thank you very much.

2.  To that effect, Generation D has been updated for February.  And thank goodness for the extra day this month, or my article on diabetes and stress would have been wicked early for March.  :)  I hope you enjoy it!

3.  Here's something that made me laugh my ass off:  my favorite dLife marketing maven sent me a link this morning to Garfield Minus Garfield, which is hosted off a Tumblr blog (which an interesting blogging platform.  Very minimalist.).  The gist of the site is as follows:  "Who would have guessed that when you remove Garfield from the Garfield comic strips, the result is an even better comic about schizophrenia, bipolor disorder, and the empty desperation of modern life? Friends, meet Jon Arbuckle. Let’s laugh and learn with him on a journey deep into the tortured mind of an isolated young everyman as he fights a losing battle against lonliness in a quiet American suburb." 

And oh, how I've laughed and learned.  This one is the office favorite: 

Image credit to Garfield Minus Garfield

4.  We're this close to finalizing our wedding invitations, thanks to the amazing design talents of our friend Matt.  The guest list is just about finalized, too.  I had another dress fitting last weekend and the pump pocket is looking good - just a few more tweaks.  For you MarriedBloggers, any ideas for bridal party gifts?  I don't want to disclose what I've been thinking about doing (because my bridesmaids all read the blog) but I'd like to hear what you  did.  I cannot wait to take pictures of all this stuff and share it with you guys - the wedding is barely two months away - I am so excited!

5.  Oh, and then there's Molly the diabetic spot-nosed monkey.  Of course.  She has a book (of course) and a set of inspirational posters (of course).   This poster, of Molly enjoying lunchtime snacky bits with a duck and an armadillo (of course) is my favorite. 

And 6.  I'm looking forward to bringing in the month of March in RI, hanging with Batman and maybe visiting the butterfly conservatory in MA.  It sounds like a very cool place to take some interesting pictures with the Nikon. 

Have a stellar weekend, FR's, and I'll see you on Monday!  :D 

February 15, 2008

The Stress Management Six.

The Friday Six:  February 15, 2008 editionStress management has been on the top of my list for the last few months, and I've finally made it the priority it deserves.  I know that all of this cortisol coursing around in my body isn't good on several levels (contributing to higher blood pressure, hyperglycemia, impaired cognitive function ... wait, what was I saying?) and I can't let this go on any longer without making considerable efforts to change.

So, I'm taking on the Stress Management Six.  My ways of dealing with the chaos that comes along with ... life, it seems.  

1.  Better Manage My Time.  Between work, personal projects, and the wedding, I often feel overwhelmed by the tasks that need to be done and instead of tackling the "to do" list, I end up intimidating and spinning my wheels.  I need to really isolate the things that need to be done and prioritize them appropriately.  Do I really need to update my Twitter status every day?  No.  But do I need to make sure that the wedding invite list is completed by next week?  Yes.  Knowing what truly takes priority and not assigning myself too many tasks can help make better use of my time.

2.  Sleep.  Oh blessed sleep.  I have a tendency to stay up too late, throwing off my whole mindset for the next day.  More sleep is pivotal to achieving a lowered stress level.  So I'm buying new pillows.  And mushing my face into them for at least 7 hours a night for starters, aiming for 8 once I get closer to the wedding.  Part of getting more sleep also means cutting waaaaaay back on the caffeine.  I'm used to be a four-cup-a-dayer, but I'm trying to cut back.  Over the last month, I've worked my way down to two cups, and this week it has only been one cup of tea a day.  I'll eventually switch to decaf tea, I think.  Weaning off the caffeine will help lower stress, help me sleep, and keep my brain from imploding due to the jitters.  (I'm like Tweek from South Park when I have too much coffee.)   

3.  Meditation.  After speaking with my doctor this week and describing the anxiety and stress issues I've been wrangling with for a few months, she strongly suggested a meditation class to help keep me centered and help me let go of the things in my life that are tossing me into the spin cycle.  So I'm currently looking for a meditation class near my office or house.  (Which, here in Western CT - aka Soccer Mom Central - shouldn't be that hard.  It's all the rage to sit on a yoga mat and breath deeply these days.) 

4.  Breathing Exercises.  Even if I'm trying my best to avoid stressors, they will still find me.  (They have some kind of honing device, I think.) I need to find ways to deal in the heat of the moment.  I've found some breathing techniques that I can use while I'm, oh, say sitting in traffic, watching the email inbox total climb into the stratosphere, or for those moments when I mash my hand in the bathroom cabinet by accident. 

5.  Disconnect From The Internet.  I spend entirely way too much time on the computer, especially for someone who is completely social and chatty.  It's unnatural for me!  When I am at work, almost all of my day involves the monstrous computer screen (I do so enjoy the WorkMac, though), but I need to make more of a habit of disconnecting when I go home at night.  Usually, my evening includes the gym, dinner, and then more computer work.  Chris and I are resolving to spend less time online in the evening and more time hanging out.  Work can't suffer and tasks need to be completed, but being online all day and all night doesn't do much for my stress levels.  I need a freaking break. 

6.  Take A Freaking Break.  Lately, I've been mostly work and not enough play.  ENOUGH OF THAT.  I am young, healthy, and part of a wonderful network of friends and family.  I'm resolving to spend more time with my friends and less time mucking around on work-related items.  Last weekend was nice, spending it exploring a new city.  This weekend, Chris and I are tucking ourselves away into a bed and breakfast - no cell phones, no internet, and no tasks.  And next weekend, I have some fun plans with friends on tap.  Life is going by so quickly these days - I need to take some time to actually enjoy it and make some memories. 

So the plan is way less stress, which should have a positive impact on my diabetes and my overall health in general.  And if that doesn't work, I may have to move permanently into a hut on the side of a mountain.  Only it will have running water.  And a wireless connection.  ;)

Have a stress-free weekend and I'll catch you, all mellow and whatnot, on the flip side.  Yo. 

February 08, 2008

The Birthday Six.

The Friday Six:  February 8, 2008 edition1.  This morning, as I drove into work, my phone rang and the voice of my 5 year old niece-to-be sang "Happy Birthday" to me.  My father's phone call gave me a rendition not unlike Marilyn Monroe, which made me burst into a fit of giggles.  If you haven't guessed, today is my birthday.  I am 29 years old.  I'm engaged to be married, working in a job that I love, and a proud part of a wonderful family.  It's nice to take a moment and realize how much life has to offer.  And how much it's already offered. 

2.  In that vein, Chris and I are off to Philadelphia this weekend to explore.   Yes, we will be running the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art and taking Rocky-style photos.  We'll check out the ol' Liberty Bell.  We're also interested in dining out downtown - any recommendations for a good, birthday-worthy restaurant? 

3.  Also, wedding plans are rolling along quite nicely these days.  We almost have our invitations ready to be printed and we're working on compiling the address list as we speak.  The wedding shower date has been set (but I know no other details - sneaky bridesmaids!) and my next dress fitting is on February 24th.  I need to find some comfortable shoes to wear on my wedding day - something with about a two-inch heel and comfortable enough to party in.  What kind of shoes did you ladies wear on your wedding day?

4.  In non-birthday news, I had the pleasure of sitting and chatting with Bertalan Meskó of Science Roll, a future clinical geneticist from Hungary who plans to specialize in personalized genomics.  He's a Web 2.0 pioneer, a blogging phenomenon, and significantly taller than me.  Aside from all his professional accolades, Berci has been a personal online acquaintance for over a year and it was great to finally meet him in person.  We talked about Web 2.0, the effects of patient blogging on the medical community, and had some drinks at The Playwright in New Haven.  It's strange how blogging provides such comfortable common ground.  The far-reaching effects of blogging still amaze me.

5.  This StrongBad email has had Chris and I laughing like idiots for several days now.  We try and recreate the techno song while we drive to the gym.  How could you not?  It's catchy! 

The 6.  And lastly, my trial of the Medtronic MiniLink CGM has come to a close.  I'll have a full wrap-up on Monday, but I really appreciate all of the feedback I've received from you guys in the blogosphere.  Having all of your perspectives, and developing my own, has made exploring this option easier.

Have a great weekend, everyone.  I'm off to celebrate!  :)

February 01, 2008

The Sussy Six.

After a stressful day yesterday, I needed a good nap and ... oh wait, is that a sussy?  Just in time for The Friday Six??

Today, my sussy came in the dLife mail delivery!  Turns out my secret sussier was Kristen (aka kkonmymind), my Flickr buddy and fellow Nikon D40'er.  Her gift was very sweet, including a data card for my camera, some tasty chewing gum (I'm admittedly addicted to gum) and a beautiful little bride-and-groom trinket to hold photos of friends and family.  Thank you so much, Kristen!  I love my sussy!  (And currently your letter is being held by the bride and groom.  They are taking good care of it.)

Sussy from kkonmymind!

In the land of off-site writing, the latest issue of diaTribe is out, with an all-new SUM Musings column talking about hypoglycemia.  Also, Generation D has been updated at dLife, with a focus on fitness.  It's an honor to be writing for both sites, so if you haven't up as a subscriber to diaTribe or as a member of dLife yet, do it today!

With today being the first day of February, I've successfully completed my first month as a member of Diabetes365.  It's a very interesting experience, taking daily snapshots of diabetes and seeing how a month of diabetes stacks up.  Have you checked out the Flickr group for D365

I stumbled upon this website about a Japanese origami artist who makes wildly creative and frighteningly realistic paper versions of industrial products.  Check out his V-12 four-stroke engine, which actually works.  I am so impressed.  

In other nonsensical news, I have come across a video game starring, my favorite one-armed dragon, Trogdor.  If you're into burninating and potentially being sworded, give this a go.  It's a great way to waste five minutes, and to laugh your ass off at the pinnacle of silliness.  And if you're looking for more old-school computer nonsense (for your TRS-80 computer from Radio Shack, perhaps?), check out this game

On the recommendation of my terrific eye doctor, we're heading home to RI this weekend and I plan to crash at my best friend's house and chill out.  Hopefully February will be filled with stress-free weekends and some cool moments.  With my birthday just around the corner (Shannon's is tomorrow - be sure to wish her a happy one) and my wedding getting closer every day, there's definitely some fun to be had.

Have a great weekend, everyone.  See you Monday!  :)

SUM Tags: , , , , ,

January 18, 2008

The Wedding Weekend Six.

It's going to be a weekend filled with wedding stuff, and just in time because our wedding is exactly four months from today!  (Holy crap.) Welcome to the Wedding Weekend Six. 

Weekend Wedding Six.First, my mother and I are going to sit with the florist and work out what we want for the wedding and the reception.   I've been reading up on tips from my pile of wedding magazines and the biggest tip for flowers seems to be "pick ones that don't stink - literally."  I have very little knowledge about flowers and which ones smell the nicest, last the longest, and are the loveliest.  Any advice from the wedded blogosphere on this one?  What did you guys have?

Weekend Wedding Six.Then, we're going for my first dress fitting - YAY!  I will be meeting with the seamstress so she can hem my gown (I am not as tall as I'd like to be) and we can figure out where the pump will live during my wedding.  It's a bittersweet feeling.  If you asked me about my wedding when I was a kid, I would have assumed a cure would have happened.  Now, I'm wondering if my "something new" will be the transmitter placement.

Weekend Wedding Six.We're also attending a wedding cake tasting on Sunday morning, thanks to my mother and her baker-wrangling skills.  My mother told the woman who is making the cake that I am diabetic - "Does she want a sugar-free cake?"  Hmmm ... even though I appreciate the gesture, it's my wedding day, damnit.  I plan on having my cake and eating it, too - sugar and all.  Crank up the bolus, baby.

Weekend Wedding Six.In other news, I heard from my friends David and Elizabeth that they have launched a new health site called DailyHealth.  According to their welcome page, "We are a thriving community of people seeking long and healthy lives. Our goal is to be the friendliest and most helpful place to find advice and support. An amazing group of volunteers helps ensure that we never waver from this goal."  Stop by DailyHealth and give them a warm welcome to the medical community!  

Weekend Wedding Six.The CGM and I have been disconnected for the last few hours, as I mistakenly pulled the sensor from my arm while taking my sweatshirt off at the gym.  Getting used to this new gadget includes a definite learning curve, and I'm taking it slowly to ensure that I give this a fair trial.  My MiniMed dude sent me the linking cable so I can load my data up from the pump to Medtronic's CareLink software, so that's my mission for next week.  I may leave it off for the weekend, though, so I can not deal with anymore hardware than necessary during my dress fitting.

Weekend Wedding Six.And in techno-geek news, I am now working on my first iMac at dLife.  Until today, I've been one of the only staff members tooling around on a PC.  But now - YAY - I am learning the ropes on thisThe Friday Six:  January 18th Edition new iMac.  It's very jazzy and is wicked fun (even though I have no idea where I stashed my old files ... ooops).  If I like it for work, it may be time to upgrade at home, too.  Hmmmm ... honeymoon or iMac?  

That's it for today.  I'm off to finish up some work, head out to the gym, and then go see Cloverfield with my fiance.   We've been excited for this movie for months - I hope it's worth all the hype.

Have a great weekend, FR's!  And if you haven't already, please cast your vote for SUM in the MedGadget Best Patient Blogger awards - I appreciate how many of you have already voted.  Thank you for your support on this, as I'm proud to even be in the running.  :) 

SUM Tags: , , ,

January 04, 2008

The Friday 3Six5.

The New Year is off to a sprinting start, like a gazelle sporting some Adidas(es?).  Here are the Friday Six:

One!On Monday afternoon, I'll be meeting with a representative from Medtronic to get suited up with the MiniLink CGM component.   I've used the Dexcom in the past and even though the device was a bit of a pain in the ass to wear, the data I had access to was amazing.  I'm hoping that just adding a transmitter that works with my pump (instead of a whole second device) will be easier for me to integrate into my lifestyle.  I'll be blogging about it, for certain.  From Dexcom Warrior to Minimed Maven.  Bring it.

Two!This made me giggle:  Top 62 Ways to Tell You Can't Cook.  Even though this is an old webpage from 2005, it made me laugh out loud.  Number 56 is my favorite, for the simple fact that it was unexpected.

Three!The New Year didn't get off to the strongest start, workout-wise.  I was just at the gym for the first time since 12/30 - shame on me.  But jumping back in wasn't too hard, and my muscles apparently remembered what I was asking them to do before.  I'm up to 15 minutes on, 5 off in my running routine and I'm putting some serious focus on toning up before the wedding.  I haven't noticed any changes yet, but I'm hoping that by February I'll be feeling fitter and ready for a white dress.

Fore!  (hee hee)Speaking of that dress, my mother called me yesterday to let me know she was picking up my bridal gown from Ye Olde Bridal Shop(pe).  Immediately, I was tossed into a wave of panic - I need to get the invitations ordered, finalize arrangements with the church, schedule my first dress fitting, talk to the reception hall about the bar, figure out who is sitting at what table ... ahhhhh!  It was my first real experience with HOLY CRAP I'M GETTING MARRIED.  I felt like I had been hit with a bucket filled with ... panicking brides.  There are only a few months until my wedding day, and Chris and I have to get on the ball.  I hope this isn't the dawn of my reign as Bridezilla. 

Five!It was nice to come across this video, especially after feeling rounded out from the holidays and that slight (cough) panic attack about the wedding.  It's from the Dove Self-Esteem fund, part of the Campaign for Real Beauty.  I read a lot of health and fitness magazines and dabble in the trashy magazine realm (read:  US Weekly!), and we need more out there in the media about loving, instead of changing, who you The Friday Six:  January 4, 2008.are.  Have you guys seen these videos? 

Six Until Me.Finally, I've taken the plunge and joined the inspiring photogs in the Diabetes365 Flickr group.  It's strange, but not surprising, to notice how diabetes is folded into the moments of my life.  I have no idea if I can keep up with the level of dedication that the seasoned members have exhibited, but I'm going to give it my best shot.  (Oh diabetes puns, how I love thee.  And a camera pun!  Twofer.)  I'm excited to be a part of this!

If you haven't already, visit the Project Diabetes365 website and get a feel for what this project is all about.

Have a great weekend!!

SUM Tags: , , , , , ,

December 21, 2007

Quick Friday Bits and Pieces

The Friday Six:  December 21, 2007Heading out the door for the holiday weekend -- but first:  The Friday Six!

1.  I'm a huge fan of Pandora, with its station creation capability and how it shows me all kinds of different bands that are in line with other bands I already like.  Today, a co-worker led me to SeeqPod Music, which is like a programmable Pandora.  You don't have to download any music and it's safe for work environments that won't allow you to download software to your computer.  It's like iTunes on the go. 

2.  Ye Olde Bridal Shoppe called me today and told me that my wedding gown has arrived and I need to schedule my first fitting.  I.  Am.  So.  Excited.  I'm curious to work out the pump pocket plan.

3.  Speaking of pumping, I will start on my Paradigm 522 tonight.  My arm site, which has served me well this week, is finally starting to feel a bit sore when I bolus, so it's time to pull it out.  New infusion set will bring out the New Pump.  And next week, I'll trial the Minimed GCM component for a few months.  More on this later.

4.  Last night's run proved that even the most awkward parts of me can eventually be trained to a higher level.  I felt stronger during my run last night than I have over the past two (grueling) weeks.  Chris tells me that running is a great way to burn fat fast, in preparation for May.  My plan is to keep at it at least through the end of January and see what kind of headway I've made.  Who out there has done some running?  How do you manage those rapidly-falling numbers?  Ed suggested working in some protein to my pre-workout snack.  I'm game to try anything.

5.  Can't focus.  Silliness reigns supreme.  What the heck are these cats doing wearing Santa hats? And how can I get Sausage to sit still long enough so I can do the same to her?

6.  We're off to RI for the Christmas holiday, spending some quality time with friends, Romans, and countrymen.  After we brave 95 North for 59,047 hours first.  Grrr, highway.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of you.  Stay healthy!  And for crying out loud, have some fun.

December 14, 2007

The Day-Off Six.

The Friday Six: December 14Jumping right in.

One!

I took today off from the office to finish up some shopping, finally send out the holiday cards I've been plodding through (and keep finding bits of glitter on my face as a result of my efforts), and spend some time knotting up loose ends for 2007.  It's funny how I think I have all the time in the world to complete things, only to realize last minute that I'm crunched for time, feeling like when Indiana Jones is reaching for his hat as the stone slab is hurtling downwards.  That's a Christmassy image, no?

Two!Yesterday's stormy snowy self made me realize how ineffective a VW Jetta is in wintry conditions.  Fortunately, I know how to drive in the snow and am very careful.  Unfortunately, half of western CT does not share this aptitude and I spent the commute home yesterday with a black BMW truck inches from my bumper, as the Soccer Mom inside applied her lipstick, texted her nanny, and smoothed her bangs.  Note to CT Drivers:  Snow is slippery.  Your car is not a day spa.  Please stay off my ass.

Three!

Instead of using my thigh to host my infusion set last night, I opted for my abdomen.  My legs need a bit of a break sometimes, so I figured a belly set would be best for a few days.  Reverted to a stomach site reminds me how much I hate wearing them "above the belt."  It's sore, the tubing is not well-concealed, and the waistband of my yoga pants (remember - day off) keeps bumping into it.  I do not like abdomen sites.  I'm already excited for Sunday night, when I go back to my thigh. 

I did entertain the thought of putting it in my arm instead, but I'm a bit daunted at the idea of snaking the tubing down my sleeve.  Have any of you used your arm as a site?  Did it drive you nuts?  Does it get in the way?  Do I ask too many questions?  Do you believe in ghosts?  Can you drive stick?  Who was your favorite Monkee?  ... ahem.  Arm site?

Four!

Another edition of SUM Musings is published in diaTribe.  Have you signed up to receive this newsletter yet?  I'm a bit biased, but I recommend taking a spin through Kelly Close's publication and making your own opinion.  :)

Five!

I'm still on my Mimined upgrade journey, talking with reps from Medtronic and working to trade in my 512 for a 522 with the CGM option.  A few of you had asked if I was pro-Minimed, and I have to say that I am.  I've been using a Minimed pump for the last four years and I'm happy with the level of service I have received.  I also found the Minimed pumps to be less bulky and the more streamlined of the tubing models, which was important to me because I like to pump relatively incognito-ish-esque.  :)  I've enjoyed the last four years with Medtronic, and I'm ready to sign up for another four.  (Sounds like an election - four more years!)

Six.

This weekend, we're off to RI to visit friends and family.  But for today, I'm off to finish my errands, wrap presents, take some pictures, and get Siah out of the damn Christmas tree.  that cat is a menace. 

Have a great weekend!

December 07, 2007

Six Snowy Bits.

Late afternoon blogging on this snowy Friday.The Friday Six:  December 7th edition

Gold star sixer. Today, December 7th, is Larry Bird's birthday.  Always an inspiration and one of the key members of my fictional healthcare management team, Larry has helped me overcome some difficult moments and keeps my fitness goals attainable and challenging, all at the same time.  Larry, here's to you.  I hope you got the card I sent.  Chris signed it, too.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY, LARRY!!!

Gold star sixer.In this article, discovered by my always-on-the-ball brother, do you think the redaacted words here are "diabetes?"  Scroll down and see if you think this was another case of diabetes leaping into the news or just another moment of (thanks, Shannon) Mad Libs.

Gold star sixer.

Chris and I are starting to work through the nitty-gritty parts of our wedding planning, including favors, invitation design, and the all-important honeymoon destination.  Our wedding colors are green and ivory, so I was thinking about little potted ivy plants as the favors.  Only drawback to this green idea is that I am forced to deal with over 250 little, potted ivory plants.  For you Married Folk out there, what did you do for favors?  Since our wedding invite list is enormous (we both come from very large families), I'm trying to think of something classy and simple, yet relatively inexpensive.    Suggestions?

Gold star sixer.I love popping bubble wrap.  Everytime something sizable is delivered to dLife, I paw around in the packing materials and grab the bubble wrap.  Pop pop pop!  I found a website with virtual bubble wrap.  Cannot resist it.  Wouldn't make my wedding gown out of it, but it's an excellent way to de-stress. 

Gold star sixer.Secret Santa is in full swing here at work and I've been tormenting my target for the last week.  (Cannot discuss too much here, as people in my office read my blog and I could end up giving away the identity of said Secret Santa target.  More on this later.) I love the holidays.  I think this sort of thing is so fun.

Useless Tidbit:  When I was in college, I lived with seven other girls.  We were hard-working college students and wallets were always a bit on the light side.  So instead of buying gifts for everyone, we would pull a name and do our version of Secret Santa.  Only we did Secret Psycho, where we pulled a name and pranked that person for the month of December. 

One morning, I woke up to find a plastic pile of dog poop on my pillow.  Another time, one roommate gave the other roommate fish-flavored candies.  And the best bit was when I came home and found my bedroom switched with another housemate's bedroom, complete with my cat asleep on my blankets, which were on her bed.  The whole event culminated in a real gift exchange before winter break.  Looking back, it was wicked fun and I wish we still did it.  Hey Roommates, can we do Secret Psycho again?

Gold star sixer. It's snowing a ton here today.  Winter is on in full effect and I, for one, am looking forward to exploring the snowscape with New Camera.  Chris and I are going to try and do some relaxing this weekend, after being sick for two weeks and having very stressful work weeks.  There's a new French place downtown that just opened up, and with Chris being a Francophile now, it might be on our list to try.

Have a great weekend, FR's, and stay warm! 

November 30, 2007

NoMoWriWo Friday Six.

The NoMoWriWo Edition.It's back!  Now with more fever!  The NoMoWriWo Friday Six.  (No More Writing Words!)

1.  Strep throat appears to be leaving my personal premises, but has been deftly replaced by a cold.  Total Crumbs Morrone, complete with slight fever, weird backache, and nagging cough.  On tap for this weekend:  REST.  And that's possible because ...

2.  NaBloPoMo is OVER with this post.  While I really love blogging and posting regularly, I'm content keeping this as a Monday - Friday party.  Posting on the weekends kinks up my plans because then I end up sucked into the computer, responding to emails ... suddenly, I've become unable to adjust to actual sunlight.  But I'm proud to have stuck this month out with so many other bloggers, including a number from the diabetes blogosphere.  Bravo, guys!  We did it!

3.  Also in the home stretch of NaNoWriMo.  Only approx. 9,500 words left to conjure up.  My co-worker, who is also immersed in the world of NaNo, and I have decided to never do this again.  We've proven that we can conquer this challenge, finishing last year and "this close" this year, so there's no need for NaNo again next year.  PLEASE remind me of this statement next October, when I start musing manically about doing this again.   And Co-Worker, should I even breathe a word of NaNo next fall, just smack me.

4.  With two engaged editorial team members here at dLife, this video has been circulating through the office.  Best first dance at a wedding - ever.  It's a must-watch. 

5.  Last night, I had the pleasure of being the guest on Dr. Anonymous's BlogTalkRadio show.  Despite a few technical difficulties, we got everything rolling and it was a fun discussion with one of my favorite medical bloggers.  His energy is contagious and he's a very active member of the medical blogosphere.  Tune in on Thursdays at 10 pm eastern for Dr. A's all-new shows!

6.  And the most random bit today is that I opened my email this morning and found a message from the guy who drove my pedicab two Septembers ago.  His email was sweet, charming, and spoke from the perspective of a courtesy long-since practiced by many people.  He also included a link to his photography site, and his pictures are truly lovely.  It was a nice surprise ... and man, was I surprised.

HAPPY LAST DAY OF NOVEMBER!!! 

November 02, 2007

SiFriSixBi.

SiFriSixBi - The Six Until Me Friday Six Bits?  Sigh ... I'm inundated in acronyms.  :)

One!Last night, I attended the MM&M awards ceremony at NYC's famousWinner - dLife!!! Tavern on the Green.  Unable to pretend to be some fancy and sophisticated socialite, I openly enjoyed every second of the event and marveled at the fantastic trees lit with white Christmas lights in the garden.  I'm from RI, FaithFul Readers.  NYC amazes me.  And dLife took home a top prize - the Healthcare Website of the Year!  It was an honor to attend, and I enjoyed meeting some of marketing's finest.

Two!On that note, I drove into the city for this occasion.  I was harassed about my driving all growing up.  "You drive too fast.  We're like in their back seat.  Kerri, you need to get off his ass.  Kerri.  Kerri!"  Well HA! to all those people who mocked me for my bevy of speeding tickets.  Finally, my aggressive driving paid off as I piloted my VW through the wilds of NYC.  Part of me enjoyed it.  The other part of me is so thankful for the fine Metro North train system.

Three!  (Ah ah ah!)However, I did have a bit of a pump mishap at this black tie event.  Wearing a black dress no sleeves, no pockets, and no confidence in my thigh thing (as, once again, the elastic is shot and I need a new one), I wore my insulin pump in my bra.  Without the clip attached, just sort of tucked there in between.  (May be TMI, but stick with me.  This is going somewhere.)

So I'm sitting at dinner, pump in my bra, and I laugh.  Hard (per usual).  And my pump decides to slip out from my bra and slide down the front of my torso. 

Fantastic.  Now I look like the lady from Alien, with something bulleting about in my stomach.

Trying to remain engaged in the conversation, I attempt to deftly maneuver the pump down towards my leg so I can disconnect from my infusion set underneath the table and duck into the bathroom to reassemble.  But the pump tubing is now tangled around my bra, refusing to unloop and release. 

Sigh.

So I had to basically reach up my dress and hope no one saw me release the reservoir from the pump, drop the pump into my hand under the hem of my dress, and let the tubing remain tangled and dangling from my bra.  The guy sitting next to me gave me an eye.  Hopefully he thought I just had an itch?  I scurried off to the bathroom, pump in hand, grabbed the pump clip from my purse (thank goodness!), and resecured the pump in my bra.  Returned to the table and pretended nothing happened.

Nothing like trying to pretend to be classy.

Four!In other news, I've also had the pleasure of joining Kelly Close and her terrific team as a Strongbad.columnist for diaTribe, with SUM Musings.  If you haven't signed up already for the diaTribe newsletter, take a spin on over there and check it out!

FiveI watched a few of these episodes at work and almost died laughing.  Teen Girl Squad, brought to you by Strongbad.  Completely silly and so worth it.

Six!!  Yay!And on tap for this weekend:  Relaxing, sleeping, blogging, a possible adventure to a covered bridge, and my niece's first birthday party.  Have a good weekend, and I'll see you on Monday tomorrow!  (NaBloPoMo, yo.)

October 19, 2007

The Sleepy Six.

Exhausted.

ONE:  Do not book a flight from LA to Newark, then Newark to Providence when you live in western CT.  This is foolish because as you take off from Newark, you actually fly over your house.  Even though we saved over $400 with this arrangement, it's still ridiculous.

TWO:  If you are an east-coaster visiting the west coast, do not spend your mornings on east coast time and your evenings on west coast time.  This will be fun, but will not lead your head to a pillow for 20 hour clips.  Currently, I am using test strips to prop open my eyelids. 

THREE:  We went to the LA Zoo yesterday afternoon and wandered around for hours.  We saw judgemental koala bears, huge tigers, and the biggest damn alligator I have ever seen.  I added a pile of pictures to my Flickr account if you want to poke around.

FOUR:  While we were at the zoo yesterday, there was a group of art students who were sketching the regal lion.  Their drawings were excellent, and Chris and I found ourselves in the middle of their artistry pack.  Feeling a bit foolish for not having a lick of artistic talent but never to be outdone, Chris whipped out his trusty notebook, borrowed a pen from my purse, and joined the fray.  The girl on our right was effortlessly sketching this:

Impressive!

And my fearless fiance, utilizing precisely 2% of his actual drawing skills, created this masterpiece:

Chris's lion.  Note the fancy ... beak it has.

FIVE:  The JDRF walk is Sunday morning in RI and we're traipsing back to RI for it.  I'm excited to see my new hat (aLOL, Nicole) and to have my bridal party start their bridesmaid dress fitting process on Sunday afternoon. 

SIX:  The Sox are still in it.  I can't say much more, because then I start to get nervous.

Another whirlwind weekend, but after this one, I'm doing NOTHING for several weeks.  Except sleeping.  And going to work.  And blogging.  And gearing up for some exciting things that are looming on the horizon. 

But sleep is a friggin' definite.

October 12, 2007

Six Things Before LA.

It's been a very silly week so far here on Six Until Me ... may as well close it out that way.  Here's The Friday Six:The Friday Six:  October 12, 2007

One.Oh for pete's sake ... we open with the LOLCat Bible.  For some strange reason, I'm surprised this exists.  I clicked around and despite the fact that it's extremely silly and completely foolish, I almost spit out my tea laughing.

Two.Now that the dress has been ordered (yay!) and my bridesmaids are all getting together next weekend (minus my wonderful sister, who is in VA, but she'll be fitted down there) for their first dress fittings, it's time to start thinking about invitations.  I've seen a few websites where you can order invitations, but I'm looking for some referrals.  If you used an online service for your wedding invites, can you send me a link?  (And we've chosen ivory and green for our colors - a very Irish wedding!)

Three.Okay, this guy had an ear grafted to his arm.  What a freak.  This is the first literal application of "talk to the hand."  Again, this has absolutely nothing to do with diabetes, but it made me laugh out loud and force co-workers to watch it with me.

Four.The highs have it, apparently.  This week has sucked as far as diabetes control goes.  Despite the fact that my A1c was decent and my blood sugars have been relatively in-range for the last few months, I hit some big highs on Tuesday and Wednesday.  I spent much of the day with sweaters on my teeth and lethargy wrapped around me like a blanket. 

Kinked cannula?  No.  Over-zealous eating patterns?  Not really.  Looks like I gaffed up my workouts and did a fancy combination of overeat/under-bolus to keep my sugars from dropping during my workout.  Of course they didn't drop, like they normally do.  For some reason, they orbited instead, hitting a cruising altitude of about 300 mg/dl.  It appears to be over now, but it sucked for a few days, to the point where I convinced I was piping in maple syrup instead of insulin.

Five.YAY!  SUM has cracked into the Top Three for the Blogger's Choice I love this little guy.Awards for Best Health Site.  Thanks for all of your support!  Voting closes on October 19th, and I'm excited to see the outcome.  Right now, they've made the results blocked out for the top three sites, so I can't tell where I'm at.  All I know is that I like the little yellow guy icon.  :)

Six.And on Sunday morning, I'll be heading out to LA for the week and working from the sunny west coast for a few days.  I have my clothes packed, my laptop at the ready, and a bottle of Xanax for the damn flight.  (I still don't like flying.  Not even a little bit.)  I'm hoping to see some buddies while I'm out in LA - including one Mr. SuperG himself! 

Have a good weekend and I'll catch you on Monday!

October 05, 2007

Another Friday Six.

The Friday Six --- a day late, according to my fine friend Christi.  ;) 

WON:  Chris recently stumbled upon the Chuck Norris internet phenomenon, where Chuck Norris is granted superhero status online.  (Bizarre stuff.  I found it a number of years ago and laughed myself silly.  Chris found it the other day and was in tears from laughing so hard.)  He's created a list of Chuck Norris Facts with a diabetes-flair.  I have a few of my own to add, but that's for another round with the ol' Photoshop.  If you have any "Chuck Norris Diabetes Facts," I'd love to hear them.  (And I'll most likely ALOL <--- that's for you, Shannon and Jamie.)

For more, visit www.loldiabetes.com

TOO:  SUM is up for the Best Health Blog award at the Blogger's Choice Awards - and voting closes on October 19th.  This is some shameless blog promotion, but if you feel comfortable casting your vote for Six Until Me, I'd really appreciate it.  Click here to vote!  I'm hoping to make it into the Top Three. 

TREE:  This weekend is already making me exhausted to think about - more weddings than I know what to do with.  We have one in Manhattan on Saturday night and another in RI on Sunday evening.  Plus, the dresses I have for these October events aren't exactly matching the freakish 80 degree weather.  Oh blast!  I can't wait until the only wedding I have to fret about is my own.

FORE:  I have never played golf, but I swing a club like it's a hockey stick.  (Only with far less power than Happy Gilmore.)  This tidbit is irrelevant, but correlates directly with the "fore."

JOHNNY FIVE:  Now that the CT JDRF walk has passed and the RI walk is on the horizon, I'm gearing up for Team Six Until Me's third appearance for the JDRF RI Chapter on October 21st.  The emails are out, the team is growing, and the hours I spend actually sleeping are waning to a miniscule little smidgy bit.  Mark my words:  after October 21st, I am sleeping for three days straight.  And not attending any weddings.  Or walks.  Or events that require thought. 

SIX UNTIL ME:  And on the cooking note from October 5th Friday Sixyesterday, I do have a crockpot.  It's red and fancy and Batman gave it to me last year but I haven't even plugged the damn thing in yet.  I'm on the hunt for crockpot recipes that are low-carb and very veggie-heavy (because I love me some vegetables).  Also, do you really leave a crockpot plugged in all day long?  That sounds like a fire hazard.  I'm going to bring mine to work and plug it in here until someone asks me what the hell I'm doing.

Have a great weekend, F.R's!  I'm off to finish work and look forward to Date Night with my handsome fiance.  (I hope it includes cheesecake.) 

September 28, 2007

Six September Bits.

The Friday Six:  September 28thAnother week all tied up?  Holy crap.  I can't believe how fast the days are going by lately.  Here's The Friday Six:

ONE!  As you may have heard from the buzz in the blogosphere, Blogabetes is booming over at dLife.  There were a few glitches with the comments at the outset, but we're en route to a permanent fix and things look like they're working fine at the moment.  One thing - you need to have a dLife profile to leave a comment, including a username.  So make sure you're signed up for dLife and then offer up some feedback for your fellow bloggers!

TWO!  Courtesy of a co-worker, I've stumbled upon a singer called Sia who has created one of those songs that you find yourself humming as you are answering a plethora of emails.  The song is called "Breathe Me" and the video is a crescendo of growling vocals, lilting piano, and Polaroid pictures.  Aside from the singer being named after my cat, it's pretty cool.  See for yourself.

THREE!  Team dLife is on the move for this Sunday's JDRF walk in Stamford.  We'll be the ones with ... well, my loud laugh, I guess.  Pictures to come on Monday after the event!  (Schneble.)  And October 21st is the next JDRF walk, only this time in RI!  Team SUM rides again. 

FOUR!  It's another mad-dash weekend, with a bachelorette party in RI on Saturday night and the walk on Sunday morning.  Not exactly sure how I'll pull off that timeframe, but I'm willing to make an effort. 

FIVE!  I like this dress:  Scoll to the dress marked "I."  What do you think?  It's definitely in my Top Three and I'm contacting the bridal shop to see if this is The One.  Oh this wedding is coming ever-closer!  And for those of you who emailed with photographer suggestions, thank you so much!  I have made appointments with several.  If you know of any good RI / Southern MA / Eastern CT wedding resources, please pass them on.  I'm organized when it comes to career stuff but this wedding is currently being woefully neglected.  All help appreciated!

SIX!  Dude, I'm spent.  Have a great weekend and I'll see you all on Monday.  :)

September 21, 2007

Six Things - and Blogabetes!

In française, in honor of Shannon and her pretty pink prom dress.

Un:  We have a wedding this weekend, and I'm tousling between the blue dress or the black dress.  Is it too late in the season for bright blue?  Ladies, please help me out with this.  I'm a fashion nightmare.

Deux:  Generation D has been updated over at dLife.  This month's column touches upon what happens when technology fails.  Because it does.  And I was none too pleased about it.  (Also be sure to welcome Manny to the Viewpoints team!)

Trois:  Our home has been invaded by royalty - and he lives in our fridge.  Sir Strawberry of the Royal House of Trader Joe has become a silly, reaction-treating staple in our home.  Chris initially bought it because of the very stodgy looking knight on the label, but the juice tastes delicious and is all-natural, so Sir Strawberry is a win-win fella. 

Quatre:  I received (well, Siah received, but I read it to her) an email from Mark Neven from the Diabetes Federation of Ireland.  His group of diabetic kids went away on an adventure weekend and they've created a site so the kids could keep in touch.  The site, Diabetes Camp, has some very funny bits on it, and they've linked back to LOL Diabetes.  Check it out, and be on the lookout for some LOL contributions from the Emerald Isle!

Cinq:  Thank you, International Diabetes Federation (IDF) for mandating that blood sugars need to be under 140 mg/dl two hours post-meal.  I needed more pressure.Blogabetes!

Six (not very Frenchy, but that's what it is): 

And now for something fun! 

dLife has launched a new blogging forum - Blogabetes!  Staffed by some familiar faces from the Blogosphere, Blogabetes is diabetes, unscripted.  Check out the latest from Nicole, SuperG, Julia, Kim, Carey, Robert, Scott Marvel, Lori - and some new voices, like Andy and Rebecca! 

Check out the new posts and leave them some love!

And congratulations to all the Blogabetes bloggers - your hard work and dedication to this project makes it all worth it. 

Have a great weekend, and I'll see you Monday!

September 14, 2007

Six September Friday Bits

Banging out a quick post on a Friday afternoon, before heading home to RI for the weekend.  Here goes!

First off, I check out the I Can Has a Cheezeburger site all the time.  I'll admit it.  Many times, the pictures make me smile.  Occasionally, they make me snicker.  And once in a great while, I actually laugh out loud.  This is my favorite one of all time.  It makes me laugh every freakin' time.  I present:

Ha!  Ha ha ha ha!

Invisible Bike.

Secondly, Grand Rounds are hosted here next week.  Here's the call for submissions.  No theme, as a departure from the last time I hosted.  Send your post!  And in other calls for submissions, don't forget to send in your LOL Diabetes moment to Siah, or your diabetes story to Your Story

Chicken Soup for the Teenage SoulThricely, I'm proud to say that a story I wrote a waa-ay long time ago has been picked up by the folks over at Chicken Soup for the Soul and is being published in their third edition of Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul.  The story is called "Our Masterpiece" and was written when I was in high school.  It's being released in early October, so check it out!

Fourthish, the JDRF walks are rapidly approaching.  If you are in the CT area, feel free to join up with Team dLife on September 30th (I'll be far from daisy-fresh, as I'll be coming straight from a bachelorette party in RI the night before, but I WILL BE THERE, damnit).  And Team Six Until Me is walking on October 21st in RI. 

Fifthesque, the hunt for a wedding photographer is on, big time, for our May 18th wedding.  I've been scouring websites and calling for quotes - apparently this venture is not as cheap as I had originally hoped.  Considering getting one of those court illustrators to draw pictures.  Or maybe a fleet of seven year olds will follow us around and create crayon renditions of our nuptials.  Either way, I need to buckle down.  This wedding, despite my encouragement, refuses to plan itself.

And Sixy, the weather is gorgeous.  Go out and enjoy it, for crying out loud.  Have a great weekend! 

August 31, 2007

Sam Talbot, US News, and a Senseless Purchase

Pearls from the blogosphere?  Don't mind if I do.

A pearl from the Blogosphere.Chris's mom originally pointed me in the direction of Sam Talbot.  "He's from Bravo's Top Chef.  He's been diabetic since he was a kid, like you!"  Of course I checked him out.  And, after a few family leads and some emails from Faithful Readers, I also noticed that Sam is up for "Glad's Steamiest Chef" competition.  According to the website, "For Sam's participation in the Steamiest Chef Contest, Glad is making a $5,000 donation to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International, the leading charitable funder and advocate of type 1 diabetes research worldwide... If Sam receives the most votes in the contest, Glad will donate an additional $25,000 to help further the foundation's work."  If you haven't already, cast your vote for Sam!

A pearl from the Blogosphere.In other diabetes celebrity news, have you taken the dLifestyles of the Rich and Famous quiz?  I was stumped on a few of these - test your celebrity savvy and see how you fare.  Also, on the Halle Berry tip, the discussion about her diabetes has been rekindled over at LOL Diabetes.  (Thanks for starting the buzz up, Hannah!)

A pearl from the Blogosphere.Also, I've had the honor and the pleasure of being interviewed by a SUM on US News and World Reporthealth reporter from U.S. News and World Report.  Their "Profile:  Living with Type 1 Diabetes" is a look at the daily management tasks of diabetes.  I'd love for you to check it out.  :)

A pearl from the Blogosphere.Chris and I are off for the weekend - nice, long holiday weekend.  No laptops.  Cell phones will remain in the car, just for an emergency.  No blogging.  No email.  No roads to race.  No schedule to adhere to.  NOTHING but the quiet bed and breakfast we've booked, some nice dinners, and each other.  Not to sound completely unromantic, but I can't frigging wait.

A pearl from the Blogosphere.And in Senseless Purchase news, I now own this:Silly little electronic cat.  Oh why did I feel the urge to own you?

I have no good reason for owning an iCat.  However, I can plug my iPod into it and it dances, it meows when it's bored, and I'm guessing it will eat batteries faster than my pump.   It was $10 at Kohl's and I bought it and I'm a small bit ashamed, but it made me laugh.  (It's also a smidge annoying and if you grab its tail, it yowls.  My co-workers may kill me within the hour.)  I showed it to Siah last night and she puffed up like a blowfish.  It was worth the $10 just to watch that scene.

Onward to the weekend!  Have a good one, and I'll see you all on Tuesday! 

August 24, 2007

Six Quick Friday Linky Bits.

Better late than never, right?

1.  Life has been spinning so quickly that I haven't had much time for blogging this week.  The result of all this work will be worth it, but now, in the throes of it all, I'm realizing how much money I spend on iced coffee each week.  Holy crap. 

2.  I followed a link on Julia's blogClick to view my Personality Profile page and took the Briggs-Myers personality test, online of course.  My results?  Apparently I'm in appropriate company:  Robin Williams, Dr. Seuss, and Balki from Perfect Strangers.  Of course.  And in the recommended career paths, I see "writer" and "massage therapist."  Of course again.  Take it - what's your result?

3.  Ever the walky-type, I've decided to do both the RI and the Fairfield County JDRF walks.  Team dLife will make an appearance on September 30th in CT, and Team Six Until Me will be making it a hat trick on October 21st in RI.  (Hi Nicole!  Would love to have you join us!)  Should be a rockin' time!

4.  Siah has requested that I let everyone know there's a new LOL Diabetes Facebook group.  Yes, Sausage, I told them.  No, you can't type.  No, Siah, leave the keyboard alone.  Siah ... stop messing around on the  oij 34tqg 24lkjmr wq olij WV .  That cat is a menace.

5.  Oh.  My.  Goodness.  This is easily the most ridiculous site of all time:  KittenWar!  You visit, are presented with two competing kitten pictures, and you click on which one is the cutest.  Completely foolish.  I spent about an hour doing it.  I'm ashamed.  But it was fun.  (By the by, there are other cats named "Sausage."  I was shocked.)

6.  I've recently been outed (at the enGAGment party, but prior to that at the Sting conceStephanie!rt) that I have a serious musical guilty pleasure:  Beyonce.  I can't help it - her music gets stuck in my head and next thing I know, I'm priming my insulin pump and humming "Crazy in Love."  I re-discovered another guilty pleasure today - El DeBarge.  "Who's Johnny?" makes me sing along and also makes me long for Johnny 5.  (More input!)  Man, I loved Short Circuit.

Off to RI early in the morning for the bridal shower of one of my (six!) college roommates.  Ah, wedding season.  Maybe I should think about planning mine sometime soon. 

Have a great weekend!  See you Monday!

August 17, 2007

Coming Up For Air.

No cohesive thoughts this Friday morning.  Everything is completely tangled.  Life has been insane Unravelling, one thread at a time.lately (but fun!).  In efforts to unravel the threads:

Working remotely this morning.  I first tried to get online at my mother's office, but the Internet Nazis who set up her office's wireless wouldn't let me access anything resembling a social networking site.  Or my dLife email.  Or IM.  Or the goodies being worked through at Blogabetes.  So now I'm holed up in a Starbucks in Providence, drinking iced coffee and trying not to spill it on my laptop.  (So far, the "ctrl' key only has some crumbs from my Blueberry Nutrigrain bar.)

Tomorrow is our enGAGment party.  My mother, in charge of the cake, confided in me that she wanted to have a big cake with Cinderella and Prince Charming on it.  After seeing my face turn white with panic, she told me that she hadn't done that.  After seeing the flash of disappointment, she told me she still could, if I wanted.  (Note to self: Kerri, you are 28 years old.  Start acting your age.)  The enGAGment party will mark the first time that ALL of our family members will be at the same place.  I'm excited, and definitely charging my camera battery to make sure I don't miss a minute.  (Is it tacky to liveblog from your own enGAGment party?)

Siah's little paws are raw from typing, but she's doing a great job maintaining the LOL Diabetes site.  She's also building her own staff team - with the help of Kahlua from Rachel's crew.  Siah tells me that she's received many excellent LOL submissions, and she's readying hers for next week.  Damn silly cat.  Have you submitted something to Siah?  Email her and send her your LOL Diabetes moments.

After my grammie passed away, my mother and her husband ended up with Grammie's car.  My mom was driving it today.  When she was putting some tables for the enGAGment party in my car, I noticed a big wooden table leg in the trunk.

"Ma, what is that?"

"Oh, that's the beating stick."  She continued to load things into my car while I stopped and stared at her for a minute.

"I'm sorry - what?  The beating stick?"

She went over to the trunk and picked up the table leg. 

"This was under the front seat of Grammie's car.  She drove with it there all the time, in case she ended up on the side of the road somewhere and needed to defend herself,"

"By beating someone with a table leg."  I finished for her.

"Right."  She brandished it with a flourish, and then a grin.  She looked just like her mother - my grammie - for a moment.

I thought about my grandmother, silly and laughing and following through whenever anyone dared her to do something, like a handstand in the mud.  She once accidentally cooked a bandaid into an apple pie. She once was the star of a short movie my brother made called "Grambo," where she pretended to storm a military base (which was nothing more than a fort in our backyard.)  She hugged us a lot.  She was sweet and loving. 

And weird.

The mental picture of her, standing on a deserted roadside if her car had broken down, brandishing a wooden table leg for protection made me smile. 

It's true, that they're always with us.  I saw her today, reflected in my mother's smile.

July 27, 2007

Six Friday Bits.

Irony.  I keep a stockpile of DVDs of the dLife shows (different versions) at my desk at work.  They are tucked neatly into a large Godiva chocolate box.  Irony, anyone?

English majors.  Chris and I designed the invitations to our engagement party and sent the proof to the printers.  However, my editor/writer eyes and his editor/writer eyes did not notice that one of the E's had taken a bit of a jaunt off the proof.  The invitations are sitting on my desk, all printed out and ready to send, inviting people to our enGAGment party.  Oh dear.  I've consulted with several Typos suck.friends, family members, and co-workers and they say "Send them out like that!  You two are silly enough to get away with it."  Okay.  But for the record, we are going to proofread the actual wedding invitations until our eyes start to bleed.  Misspelled invitations from the writers.  Perfect. 

Dexcom.  Dexcom and I will reunite next week for a few days because my afternoon blood sugars look a little dodgy and require some reigning in.  Posts to follow.  Possibly graphs.  And Siah may use a laser pointer to go through the Power Point presentation.  Or she may run like a fool after the laser pointer until she tires herself out and falls asleep on my head.  Again.  Blasted cat.

Wedding.  I bought a dress yesterday for a wedding we're going to in August.  I love Ann Taylor to the point where I drove an hour of my way last night in commuter traffic to go pick up this gorgeous dress (they didn't have my size in Westport and I couldn't control the impulse).  I am considering Ann Taylor for my bridesmaid dresses - classic, elegant, and they won't make anyone's wallet keel over and seize.  I'm also seriously considering hiring a wedding consultant because I can't seem to make it all happen without issue.  (See above "enGAGment" party.) 

Sleep.  Where fore art thou, sleep?  I caught an article in Women's Health last month about how today's twenty somethings aren't catching nearly enough naps.  Whatever do they mean?  Isn't it normal to be up until 2 in the morning working on assorted goodies?  Don't most people get 5 hours of sleep?  Isn't sarcasm detectable over the internet?  I think the hands on my internal clock are spinning wildly, because I haven't had a solid 8 hours of sleep in a few months.  It's always go-go-go all the time - I'm itching to take a whole weekend and do NOTHING.  Are we, as young people, cramming too much into one day?  Is it normal to have a list of "to do" lists?  Does anyone else stay up all freaking night? 

Weekend.  Heading home to RI as soon as possible, hoping the weather holds out and I have the chance to hit the beach for a few  hours.  Have a good weekend, and ... oh for crying out loud, Sausage.  Get off my laptop.

July 19, 2007

A Handful of Items

Item One:  Arching in as topic one (oh ha, the puns!), I will be at the Annual AADE meeting in St. Louis this year.  (My poor editor-in-chief is my travel companion.  I hope she doesn't mind when I'm half on the moon from xanax for my fear of flying and rambling on nonsense about my cat until the medication wears off.)  Will any of you be there?  I'm very excited to participate in this event as a member of the dLife team.  And I'm very excited to see the big ol' Arch. 

Item Two:  Back when we went rafting, the raft guides has some rogue kayakers who skipped ahead, perched themselves on the rocky sidewalls, and snapped photographs of the rafters as we passed by.  Here is how we rolled:

Rolling down the river.

Item Three:  Wedding planning, though having taken a bit of a backseat to different work projects for both Chris and I, is in full swing.  We've booked our reception hall and nailed down our actual wedding date, so now it's time for all the other stuff - like the photographer, the church, dresses, and deciding how many flowers is really "too many."  Admittedly, I have no idea what I'm doing.  I have several books and have consulted with The Knot on several occasions (only to notice that my post about Oliver's gas was linked from their discussion boards - I laughed until I cried), but time is going by so quickly and I fear I'm falling behind. 

Our engagement party invitations came in, so that's all set to take place on August 18th (yay!), but aside from that, I'm sort of lost.  How exactly do you find a photographer?  (If anyone has any recommendations for a photographer in the RI area, I'd love to hear from you.)  How far in advance do you need to find a wedding dress?  How hard is it to wrangle all the bridesmaids into one style of dress or can I have varying styles along the same color theme?  How much wood would a woodchuck chuck, were he so inclined? 

Item Four:  Social networking is all over the place these days.  LinkedInTwitterFacebookNing networksMySpace.  Whoa.  (No, "whoa" isn't a social networking platform.  At least not yet.)  There are plenty of networking opportunities.  I'm sure there are plenty that I have no clue about.  Any new ones that you know about?

Item Five:  I don't know if you caught this link on my sidebar, but I want one of these in the worst way.  And I can't figure out why it appears to have a hand brake.  Bizarre indeed!

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