Not the Best way to Start 2014

I wasn’t sure what to expect on New Years Eve.  I knew it was going to be a long ass day.  What I didn’t know was that my day job was letting out early at 2:00.  I had to be at the restaurant at 4:30.  If I drove 40 minutes home, I’d only be home like 30 minutes before having to drive another 45 minutes to the restaurant.

So I worked out!  I really wanted to swim, but the pool was closed because there wasn’t a lifeguard on duty.  So I just did an easy 5 minute walk, 5 minute jog, and alternated for 45 minutes to do just over a 5k.

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Just as I was leaving they gym, it started to snow.  It was predicted that the Chicagoland area would be getting a couple of inches of snow overnight NYE, and then up to six inches during New Years day.  I was hoping that the weather would hold off until the wee hours of the morning, but that wasn’t the case.  Within the first hour of working we already had at least 10 cancellations.  I already knew I was going to be in the bar area, and thought I could eat least get a couple decent four tops of couples wanting to splurge on dinner and drinks and stay to ring in the new year.

Instead, I had tables who ordered pop and water before heading to dinner.  When they got back from dinner, they wanted coffee.  I am the QUEEN of upselling.  Since I am a foodie I am really good at describing specials.  One special I’ve talked about is the “Bowl of Heaven.”  It’s slow cooked meats – braciole – flank steak that’s been rolled in Italian bread crumbs and asiago cheese, Italian sausage, meatballs and beef necks – all simmered in an amazing marinara sauce.  The meat is so tender you can eat it with a fork.  I’ve sold that dish at least 10 times, and I think its based on my passionate description of this dish.  But with only two tables who actually ate dinner in the bar area, there wasn’t a lot I could do in the upsell department.

In fact, when it hit 10:00 I pretty much knew that this was going to be the crowd at midnight – and interestingly enough, there were two groups of women, six women at the bar and another four ladies at a table that dominated the dance floor all night – at least they were having fun!  I sent this picture to Tony a few minutes before midnight!

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But I have to admit that without advertising, the crowd wasn’t bad.  I know the restaurant has a 90 day game plan and I know it will eventually be packed.  I was happy that both the Chef and the GM gave me the bar area because they thought that it would be the most lucrative.  But I have to admit when I saw the other servers leaving at 10:30 I was a bit envious!   I did end up making good money, although I was on my feet for nearly 9 hours.  I got home around 2:00 a.m.  Tony was waiting up for me, and we had a cheers drink, he taped a bit of the Kathy Griffin/Anderson Cooper NYE show and we finally went to bed around 2:45. 

Tony woke me up around 3:30 because he was having problems.  I’ve talked about how his colonoscopy went on Christmas Eve – no new cancer, but he has polyps that have to be removed before they do turn into cancer.  We had plans to go back mid-January to take care of that.  But Tony isn’t typical.  He has an artificial heart valve which requires him to be on blood thinners for the rest of his life.  The premise is that they have to keep his blood levels thin enough so that he doesn’t get a blood clot in his valve, but thick enough so that if he cuts himself shaving, etc., he won’t bleed too fast.

The only way to do this before removal of the polyps is to hospitalize him, put him on something called heparin while weaning himself off his blood thinner medication, and when the “magic number” hits, they feel comfortable doing the surgery. 

But yesterday he started bleeding a lot when going to the bathroom.  Like a lot.  Like a really lot.  Like enough that it was spooking us!  A lot.  Our only solution on New Years Day was to go to the Emergency room.  We actually were anticipating lots of people there, but we lucked out.  We got through triage quickly, had blood drawn, the doctor on call talk to us.  From the time we walked in until they actually decided to admit us was about 4 hours – not bad!

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By the time I left before 9:00 p.m. last night, the nurse was going to touch base with all his doctors – GP, heart doctor and GI doctor to get a plan of action.  My guess is that starting tomorrow they will start him on heparin and do the surgery to remove the polyps now, which is probably the cause of the excessive bleeding.  The best news is that we know it isn’t cancer!  But staying in the hospital is not a place that you get much rest.  When Tony had hernia surgery after his colon cancer surgery, he got an infection called c-diff.   C-diff is a bad mofo.  Tony contracted it during his surgery for the hernia.  Because of that, Tony cannot be in a shared hospital room for the rest of his life!  That’s about the only positive outcome of having c-diff!

So they put him in a pediatric unit because that was one of the only single rooms available.  It is actually a secured unit and you have to get buzzed in to enter the unit.  Tony immediately noticed that he had a DVD player in his room and said “I’ve never gotten that in a room at this hospital before!”  Well, kids who are in hospitals liked to be entertained with movies.   The nurse said that they had a “media” library in the hallway if he wanted to take a look.  When Tony asked “do you have Despicable Me” she laughed and said “no, all the DVD’s are donated so we don’t really have any new release DVDs – they are all older movies.”

So I almost immediately thought that I wanted to pay it forward and buy some new DVDs for the pediatric ward.  While we are struggling financially with Tony being out of work, I did just win $5,000 for my chili recipe and thought that I could afford to buy $100 dollars worth of DVDs to donate to the ward.  And I thought “I wonder if my blog friends could help?!”  If you are so inclined, I would love it if you could mail me just one recent kids DVD to me to donate to our local hospital.   I will put a sticker on the back of the DVD stating “donated by your name and state.”  If you don’t have time to shop and mail me an actual DVD, you can send a letter with cash and I will do the shopping for you.  Tony and I have been so lucky that our kids have had such a healthy childhood, we can’t even fathom having our kids being hospitalized.   If you’d like to help, just send me an email at mybizzykitchen@gmail.com.  I’d be thrilled if we could donate 20 DVDs!   I promise if you send me cash I will send you a receipt and give you full props on the blog!

Alright, time to shovel some snow off my car to head to the hospital before going to work.  I need to hold my husband’s hand, tell him everything is going to be okay and give him lots of kisses!  Oh, and bring his phone charger too. Open-mouthed smile

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  • Bonnie
    January 2, 2014 at 6:53 am

    Oh dear! So not the way to start the new year but it sounds like things are under control. Hope Tony has a short hospital stay and is quickly on the mend.


    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:54 pm

      Thanks Bonnie – keep warm!! Did you see that our weather Monday? A high of -11 degrees!

  • SuziCate
    January 2, 2014 at 6:56 am

    I’m so sorry. Lifting Tony up for quick healing. Be careful with that Cdif…my MIL had a time with it a few years ago and so did my BIL; it is NOT to be messed around with!

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:54 pm

      Yep, c-diff is no joke. Thanks Suzi!

  • Peggy
    January 2, 2014 at 7:00 am

    GEEZ!!!!!! you were on my mind yesterday, all day, I wondered why and now I know. crap.

    Miss E and I will work on your request. I love involving her in this kind of stuff. Send me your address, please and thank you! 🙂

    TONY! It will be ok, you have LOTS of people cheering you on and saying many prayers and sending lots of good vibs! So bummed you are going through this, for both of you. 🙁 looking forward to meeting you both at Giordanos, one day real soon!!!

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:55 pm

      Thanks Peggy – and what a great life lesson to teach your daughter to pay it forward – love it!

      Can’t wait until we are close enough to meet for lunch! 😀

  • Erica
    January 2, 2014 at 7:31 am

    Praying for yall!! What a fantastic idea-im totally in. Will send $$. Do you have paypal? Or just mail is best?

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:55 pm

      Paypal is a great idea – thanks so much Erica – I really appreciate it!

  • Errign
    January 2, 2014 at 7:32 am

    Thinking of you! I’ll look through my DVDs – I think I have some relatively recent ones!

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:56 pm

      Thanks Errign – hope you are enjoying all your snow this year!

  • Jacky
    January 2, 2014 at 7:35 am

    What a great idea, way to add a positive twist to the situation. Safe driving out there today!

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:56 pm

      Thanks Jacky – glad that you worked from home today – keep warm!

  • Kym
    January 2, 2014 at 8:14 am

    That is why you rock! Even in the face of something negative you find some little piece of something and turn it into a positive action. I think action is a good word to describe you. Other people talk about doing things and you do them. Yes, I am in for the DVD idea. I hope Tony’s stay won’t be long and that the magic number comes quickly. Keeping you both in my thoughts and sending postive energy your way.
    PS Erica’s idea of pay pal is a good one. Maybe Charle could figure that one out for you to add a button or something.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:57 pm

      A button is a great idea – thanks Kym! And I think that’s what keeps me going, because when something goes wrong, I try to think of someway to make it a positive. Thank you for your continued support!!

  • Erin
    January 2, 2014 at 8:53 am

    Get well soon, Tony!!!
    Check. Your. Email. :-))

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:58 pm

      Got it – thanks Erin!!

  • Helen
    January 2, 2014 at 9:04 am

    Oh boy, I’m so sorry about this – but maybe this is actually a great way to start the new year as he’ll be fixed up right away!

    I saw on the news that you guys are being pummeled with the snow heading our way. Be safe with all the driving you’re doing.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:59 pm

      I was thinking of you Helen since you were just in the hospital on Christmas Eve – we lucked out that it wasn’t busy on a holiday!

      Yep, we got about 12 inches, but now the arctic air is on it’s way – Monday our HIGH is -11. Ugh!

  • Renee'sKitchenAdventures
    January 2, 2014 at 9:18 am

    xxo and lots of hugs and prayers sent your way!! I sent you an email about the dvd donation!

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:59 pm

      Got your email – thanks Renee – and feel better soon!

  • Sam
    January 2, 2014 at 9:26 am

    I’m so sorry to hear this. I’m praying for you guys!
    I think that the DVD idea is wonderful, and I’ll be emailing you today about it 🙂

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 9:59 pm

      Thanks Sam! 😀

  • Caron
    January 2, 2014 at 9:44 am

    You do have a lot to deal with just starting out the new year. Hang in there. We’re praying for you and Tony. 🙂

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:00 pm

      Thanks Caron – I appreciate your support! 😀

  • Sherry Werth
    January 2, 2014 at 10:01 am

    Oh my. So sorry to hear this and I’m sending prayers and get well wishes your way! But Tony is cancer free (Yah!) and getting ahead of the game by having his surgery just a little early. Just means he will be all better a lot sooner! 😀
    Take care with all the not-so-nice weather you’re having up that way! And yes, I will be more than happy to participate in your DVD Drive!! That is so thoughtful of you to think of doing that for others while you are going through your own trying times. God Bless!! 🙂

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:01 pm

      Yep, I keep telling myself that “it’s not cancer!” Best news even though he has to go through another hospital stay.

  • Abbe@This is How I Cook
    January 2, 2014 at 10:19 am

    Biz, you are one cool cucumber. It is a tough way to start the year, but after this it could be smooth sailing! Glad you got to hold Tony’s hand and came to the rescue with a phone charger! We could use multiples of those! Take care, my little sweetie! And tell Tony, I wish him a fast and speedy recovery! The Dvd’s are a great idea that is something only you would think of! And a wonderful one. If my Manservant lands a job today, which is possible, I will send something. I’m dying to spread some cheer! (Maybe that wasn’t the right word!)

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:02 pm

      Thanks Abbe – staying positive is what keeps me going. Sending good vibes about your husbands work situation!

  • Courtney @ Don't Blink. Just Run.
    January 2, 2014 at 10:28 am

    Ugh, what an awful start to the year. How thoughtful of you to do the DVD thing though, that’s awesome. I hope he’s feeling better really soon.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:02 pm

      Thanks Courtney!

  • Heather
    January 2, 2014 at 10:35 am

    Let me look at what we have – I got rid of a bunch a few years ago but I bet I still have some laying around!
    Here’s to a better and bigger New Year – it can only go up from here!

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:03 pm

      I agree Heather – thanks for taking a look!

  • Jan
    January 2, 2014 at 11:12 am

    Saying prayers to you and Tony. You are rock solid andTony is so lucky to have you by his side. You’re so kind and supportive, I always learn from you. The rest of this year is going to be great, I just know it. xoxoxox

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:03 pm

      Thanks Jan. Yep, I am calming to Tony when he’s in the hospital, he almost always falls asleep when I am there. 😀

  • Randi
    January 2, 2014 at 12:29 pm

    Oh crap. So sorry your NY started out this way, but glad Tony is in the hospital and will get these taken care of. They thought I might have contracted C-diff too from my recent surgery, but thankfully I didn’t.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:04 pm

      So glad you didn’t get c-diff Randi – it’s horrible. Sadly he suffered about three weeks with it before we figured out what it was!

  • Louise
    January 2, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    Oh so sorry to hear about Tony…..praying for you guys. I wondered all day, where you were. Wonderful idea about the DVD’s – I’ll look through my collection. Keep looking up!!!

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:04 pm

      Thanks Louise – keep warm up there!!

  • Shelley B
    January 2, 2014 at 1:14 pm

    Well crum. I guess you guys are getting all of the rough stuff for the year out of the way early, right? I’ll help out with a DVD; more later when I get back home to a real computer.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:05 pm

      That’s what I told myself, we’ll wipe out the deductible in January and then everything is covered 100%!

  • Lisa
    January 2, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    That is so scary!!! I hope he is ok.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:06 pm

      Thanks Lisa! Loved your New Years Day walk – it’s so beautiful where you live – one day I’ll get there!

  • Kim of Mo'Betta
    January 2, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    ugh! I’m so sorry to hear that Tony is in the hospital! But how awesome are you for wanting to donate to the Children’s ward of the hospital! You rock 🙂 Also, I don’t know if I have said congrats on winning the recipe contest, so if not, congrats! I hope Tony gets to come home very soon.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:07 pm

      Thanks Kim – I appreciate it – I hope he comes home soon too – it’s spooky being in the house by myself!

  • Lori
    January 2, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    Ugh – 2014 has to get better from here on out, right? Hope the surgery goes smoothly and Tony comes out with no infections from the hospital.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:07 pm

      Thanks Lori! And I hope your house closing goes through without a hitch – can’t wait to see all the renovations you’ll do to the Manor!

  • Carrie @ Season It Already!
    January 2, 2014 at 2:41 pm

    Thinking of you guys! Lots of love your way.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:08 pm

      Thanks Carrie! Hope the snow isn’t as bad in Minnesota as it is here!

  • Kim
    January 2, 2014 at 4:06 pm

    I’m so sorry that Tony is having problems and had to go in the hospital sooner than planned. I hope that everything goes smoothly with the surgery (and the pre-stuff with heparin!).
    Do you only want new DVDs – I’m sure we have some good ones that the boys don’t care about anymore.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:09 pm

      Doesn’t have to be new ones at all! Anything would be appreciated – they had stuff like old Black Beauty DVDs, so anything will be appreciated!

  • Joanne
    January 2, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    Hope you and Tony are doing well. Thinking of you both. I will have to look through our DVD’s and see what I come up with. Is “The Sandlot” too old?

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:09 pm

      Um, the Sandlot is never too old! That is actually one movie I didn’t mind watching over and over when Hannah was little! Sadly I only have it on VHS!

  • A Life From Scratch
    January 2, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    Thinking of you both!

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:10 pm

      Thanks Courtney – keep warm – I’d keep your fireplace going for the next few days!!

  • Suzanne
    January 2, 2014 at 7:17 pm

    Oh no!! I hope he get’s the surgery asap and is home lickety split 🙂

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:10 pm

      Thanks Suzi!! Hugs!

  • Roz@weightingfor50.com
    January 2, 2014 at 10:03 pm

    OMG Vat, I am SO sorry to hear that 2014 started out on a sour note. Hope he is treated quickly, sent home soon, and that is your quote for hospitals for the year. Hugs to you both!!!!! Sending good wishes, good thoughts and all my hopes for a fast recovery for Tony and a calm rest of the year.

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:11 pm

      Thanks Roz! Be sure to tell Neva she’s still #1 even if you are cat sitting! 😀

  • elizabeth
    January 2, 2014 at 10:08 pm

    It sucks that the year has not had the best start, but hopefully things only go up from here on out. And if you’re interested, I could send you some ideas for barbell complexes (not heavy ones!) that you could do to get a cardio/strength combo workout in about 20 minutes or so.

    I’d love to send a DVD or two too–I’ll shoot you an email to get the address and a list of titles. 🙂

    • Biz
      January 2, 2014 at 10:12 pm

      I would love the cardio/strength workouts! Thanks E – I will email you soon!

  • Mandy
    January 3, 2014 at 4:30 am

    Get well soon Tony, definitely not the way to start off 2014.

  • M.J. Jacobsen
    January 3, 2014 at 6:05 am

    Oh hell! Sorry to hear this, sending hugs and wishes for a very short stay!!
    I will email you to get some ideas for DVD titles so there won’t be hopefully lots of duplicates! Stay calm and focused, your usual! Hang in there Tony!

  • Fran
    January 3, 2014 at 6:07 am

    Oh sweety what a way to start the new year for the both of you. But since I have a positive attitude: let’s hope this is all the hospital you both will see in 2014. I keep you both in my thoughts and hope everything goes well for Tony.

  • Lynne
    January 3, 2014 at 6:31 am

    Biz – you’re right, not a great way to start the year – but, get it done right away and then you’re done for the year, right?!! Movies are a great idea – such a positive spin on your situation…that’s the spirit and my first lesson of 2014. Thank you! Peace to you and Tony as you get through this. Lynne.

  • Jenn (eating bender)
    January 6, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear this, Biz. Thinking of you and Tony. I love the DVD idea so much — I’ll be emailing you shortly!

  • Sheryl C.
    January 8, 2014 at 3:29 pm

    Hi Biz,

    I have been behind on reading my blogs, so I am just seeing this. I’m sorry you are having to go through all this and will keep Tony in my prayers. I certainly know what juggling hospital and work and everything else is like. I’m sure you say more about how he is doing in later posts, so I will read on and find out.


  • Karli
    January 29, 2014 at 3:09 pm

    Biz! I’ve been so out of touch. I’ve been on jury duty for what feels like the whole month. I am so sorry I missed this post and I want you to know you’ve been on my mind. Prayers are with you and Tony as he heals!