malinaldarose: (Default)
On Saturday, BFT and I took off for Buffalo(ish) in order to shop for books. Amazon is nice and all, but sometimes, you just have to fondle the books first. I drove, and it seemed to me that there was a lot more traffic on the road than is usual, but I suppose it was people out doing their last-minute back-to-school shopping. We got there around 11:00, and went straight to the bookstore. We had decided on the way up not to bother with Pier 1 this time, and that's normally our first stop. We spent an hour or so browsing and filling baskets, then checked out and headed over to the Olive Garden for lunch.
We started back home around 1:30, and I complained about how nice the weather was -- if I'd known it was going to stay that nice, I'd've done my laundry and hung it out before we left. BFT wisely pointed out that I didn't know what it was doing at home, and it turned out she was correct; the weather was much different to the south; we drove into overcast in Springville, and shortly after that, we drove into rain.

I mention the weather partly because the van was quite warm when we got back into it after lunch, so I turned on the fan to move some air around. It was still relatively cool outside, so I thought that would be enough, but it wasn't, so BFT switched it to a/c, and we drove along with the a/c on low. And then...when we got to Springville, the car bonged at me -- which I have to say frightens the life out of me -- and the temperature idiot light came on. I pulled right over, and BFT switched off the a/c. The idiot light went out, but the engine temperature remained at the 3/4 mark on the dial the rest of the trip home. BFT advised me to not to go my regular garage, but to take it to a place across town where she goes. I may do that. I'll have to arrange with someone to meet me there and take me on in to work, but I'm sure I can convince my sister to do that.

In any case, it was fine driving around town yesterday; I ran out to get groceries and to see about a new space heater, because even I draw the line at turning the furnace on during the first week of September. I have one of those large radiator-style space heaters, and it has always worked just fine, but I've had it since I was a teenager, so it's about thirty years old, and it makes me a little nervous to use it. I've always been very careful of it, and it's never even been so much as tipped over, let alone bashed about. It's probably fine, but....

I may end up turning the furnace on, though, because while it's going to be 80° and gorgeous today, it's supposed to start raining again tonight and be chilly and damp for the rest of the week.

The weather also concerns me because of the kittens under the ramp. I don't know how dry it stays under there, but I know that the eaves run off onto the high end of the ramp (because I don't have a ladder tall enough to get up there and clean them out, so they're blocked; there are weeds growing up there). I have started leaving food out for Mama (and I suspect it is probably the same mother cat as before), but only in the mornings, and only as much as I would give to Kethri. I have seen her wolfing it (if you'll pardon the expression) the last couple of mornings. This morning, she also loafed on the ramp in the sun for a bit before going back underneath to attend to her kittens.

I have so much stuff to do, and don't know that any of it is going to get done today. Since this is the last nice day for the forseeable future, I may simply say, "fuck it all," and go sit on the patio (thus terrorizing Mama) with a book this afternoon. I should mow, but I'll be hanging laundry out, and can't mow under the laundry lines. There are the other three quadrants I could mow, but fuck them too.

Yesterday, I put together some new shelves for my bedroom. They're cheap white cubbyhole shelves, the sort that you see baskets randomly shoved into, that are put together with dowels and long screws. While putting together the first one, I tried to turn it on its side so I could more easily attach whatever side I was working on, but the center structure wasn't yet secure enough to hold. The dowels snapped and the shelf fell out. It turned out all right, though, as the wider/taller space (I turned the shelves on their sides and stacked them) in the center left room for my Italy photo albums which I have always kept in my bedroom (for no particular reason other than I had space there; my other travel albums are in other parts of the house). Plus that extra space really makes the whole thing much more interesting visually. It looks like it was done on purpose. I like it.

And having extra bookshelf space never hurts....
malinaldarose: (Default)
I seem to have survived another week of LJ Idol. Good ol' Sal Alarra. I'm beginning to wonder if I should write her whole story; I actually have pretty much the whole thing in my head. I've never written sci fi before, partly because of the "science" part. Not sure what sort of research I'd have to do to make Lightcastle Station work properly -- would watching Deep Space Nine and Babylon 5 constitute research?

They actually started handing out W2s at work yesterday -- two whole days ahead of when they absolutely have to. I had already printed mine from the online site where I now have to retrieve my pay stubs, which means I can do my taxes this weekend. I may or may not; depends on whether I want to mess with them. The software I use makes them simple, but it still takes up to two hours.

According to an email that went out late yesterday afternoon, we're not only supposed to sign a form stating that we received our W2s from the payroll clerk (if we do), but we're also supposed to sign something giving them permission to not give us hard copies next year. They intend that from now on, we'll only retrieve them online.

I am not thrilled about this. Paper always boots. Well, unless it's a really, really, really hot day, but if the temperature is higher than 451°, then we've got other things to worry about.

Speaking of which, I have ordered my copy of 1984. I had to get it from B&N since Amazon was sold out and PaperbackSwap didn't have any copies left, either. I have actually read it; it was one of the required books when I was in high school. I don't remember much about it other than I loathed it...but I loathed almost everything that was required reading. The few books I have since reread, I actually enjoyed. I have also ordered a copy of Brave New World which I haven't read before.

Having finished one '70s television series, I have gone back to another that was a childhood favorite: The Six Million Dollar Man. It's a bit silly. There was an episode, for instance, where to escape the Bad Guys (a bunch of pro football players) with his friend (another pro football player), Steve and the friend (played by Larry Csonka, who was also in an episode of Emergency!) had to play football against them. It was ridiculous. Also, I've noticed that Steve's bionics are as powerful or not powerful as the story requires. And now that I'm so much older, I have questions like "How does his organic torso stand the stresses put on it by the use of the bionics?" and "Why didn't they armor the back of his skull while they were at it since he gets hit over the head at least once an episode?" This hasn't stopped me watching, mind you, and while I wait for the two final seasons to arrive, I'll either go back to the beginning (it's been a year or so since I watched the first two seasons), or I'll start The Bionic Woman (yet another childhood favorite -- I even had a Jaime Somers doll when I was little), since I've had the first season sitting around for a couple of years.

Also, now I want to see Steve Austin go through the Stargate. Can you just imagine Col. Austin and Col. O'Neill? The snark alone would keep the Goa'uld at bay.

The lake effect storm warning for the weekend seems to have been downgraded to a watch. They were talking about feet of snow for the weekend total, though that would have been in ski country, not around here -- though we could still have had enough snow to make me very unhappy. Well, we still could, I suppose, but I'm hoping not. (Ha! Originally typed "noping," which is clearly "hoping not.")

The only thing planned for the weekend other than a lot of goofing off is dinner out with BFT this evening. We've both had awful enough weeks that the only cure is ice cream in vast quantities....
malinaldarose: (frodo_reading)

1. Blood and Circuses by Kerry Greenwood
2. Ruddy Gore by Kerry Greenwood
3. Urn Burial by Kerry Greenwood
4. Raisins and Almonds by Kerry Greenwood
5. Inferno by Dan Brown
6. Ungrateful Dead: Murder at the Fillmore by Patricia Morrison
7. California Screamin': Murder at Monterey Pop by Patricia Morrison
8. Love Him Madly: Murder at the Whisky by Patricia Morrison
9. Death Before Wicket by Kerry Greenwood
10. A Hard Slay's Night: Murder at the Royal Albert Hall by Patricia Morrison
11. Go Ask Malice: Murder at Woodstock by Patricia Morrison
12. Away With the Fairies by Kerry Greenwood
13. Murder in Montparnasse by Kerry Greenwood


14. Turn Coat by Jim Butcher
15. Changes by Jim Butcher
16. Side Jobs by Jim Butcher
17. The Weirdstone of Brisingamen by Alan Garner
18. The Moon of Gomrath by Alan Garner
19. The Owl Service by Alan Garner
20. Ghost Story by Jim Butcher
21. From a High Tower by Mercedes Lackey
22. Cold Days by Jim Butcher
23. Skin Game by Jim Butcher
24. Star Wars: The Force Awakens by Alan Dean Foster
25. The Ghosts by Antonia Barber
26. Splinter of the Mind's Eye by Alan Dean Foster
27. Svaha by Charles de Lint
28. The Hawk's Gray Feather by Patricia Kennealy-Morrison
29. The Oak Above the Kings by Patricia Kennealy-Morrison
30. The Hedge of Mist by Patricia Kennealy-Morrison
31. Speak Daggers to Her by Rosemary Edghill
32. Book of Moons by Rosemary Edghill
33. The Bowl of Night by Rosemary Edghill
34. A Red Heart of Memories by Nina Kiriki Hoffman
35. Ishmael by Barbara Hambly
36. Children of Earth and Sky by Guy Gavriel Kay
37. A Song for Arbonne by Guy Gavriel Kay
38. Shadow Unit 1 by Emma Bull, Elizabeth Bear, et. al.
39. The Last Light of the Sun by Guy Gavriel Kay
40. Shadow Unit 2
41. Shadow Unit 3
42. Shadow Unit 4
43. Shadow Unit 5
44. Shadow Unit 6
45. Shadow Unit 7
46. The Lions of Al-Rassan by Guy Gavriel Kay
47. Harry Potter & the Cursed Child by J. K. Rowling
48. Independence Day: Resurgence by Alex Irvine
49. American Gods by Neil Gaiman
50. The Oathbound by Mercedes Lackey
51. Oathbreakers by Mercedes Lackey
52. Oathblood by Mercedes Lackey
53. By The Sword by Mercedes Lackey
54. Magic's Pawn by Mercedes Lackey
55. Magic's Promise by Mercedes Lackey
56. Magic's Price by Mercedes Lackey
57. Brightly Burning by Mercedes Lackey
58. Chronicles of Pern: First Fall by Anne McCaffrey
59. The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper
60. Hogfather by Terry Pratchett
61. Shadow Unit 8
62. Sorcery & Cecilia Or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot by Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline Stevermer


63. A Thousand Days In Venice by Marlena de Blasi
64. Shockaholic by Carrie Fisher

Fan Works

65. The Sky Without Wings by Leupagus
66. Only Good For Legends by Leupagus
67. Through the Looking Glass (series) by Obsidienne
68. Taking Action series by Closer
69 - 73. Phil Coulson's Casefiles of the Toastervers (5 entries totalling more than 250,000 words) by Scifigrl47
74. Hollow Your Bones Like a Birds by Scifigrl47
75. Stories Told With Silence by Scifigrl47
76. His Fate Will Be Unlearned by Scifigrl47
77. You or Someone Like You by Scifigrl47
78. Fairy Tales and Clockwork Hearts by Scifigrl47
79. Dating the Long Way Round by Scifigrl47
80. Magazineverse by Copperbadge
81. Counting Stars by Amycat8733


Missed one: Past the Size of Dreaming by Nina Kiriki Hoffman. I forgot to write it in my list, but I knew I read two things by her last year. I'm not going to renumber the last, but that makes the total 82.
malinaldarose: (Default)
Still cold. Cut walkies short again when Jack decided he needed to get ice out from between his toes right now. Wasn't quite the cold paw dance, but close. It is, however, supposed to start getting warmer and be nearly 40° by the end of the week. Unless the long range forecast has changed again. It does do that.

It snowed a lot more yesterday than walkies would indicate; we probably got two or three inches. Not enough for me to bother going out to clear it because the van will go through it just fine. But I did notice on afternoon walkies yesterday that mine was the only driveway on the block that wasn't cleared, and it just reminds me once again how everyone is oh, so eager to help the elderly widow, but no one gives a fuck about the middle-aged divorcee. Not, mind you, that I begrudge the help that everyone gives Mrs. T. She's a nice lady, and I'm glad people help her. It's just...sometimes I get tired of having to do absolutely everything for myself, especially when some of these things didn't used to be my responsibility.

Yeah, every time I clear the driveway or mow the lawn, I curse the ex-husband. Even after so many years, he is constantly in my thoughts. And I haven't the spare cash to hire these things done for me.

Which leads me to a resolution I'm toying with: Not to buy any new books this year, but read what's already on my shelves. I have a terrible, terrible habit of buying multiple books whenever I go near a book store (or garage sale, or rummage sale, or....) and then not reading them. Every time I cull my bookshelves (which only happens every few years), I end up culling books I've had for twenty years and never read. I am not totally resolved on such a thing, though. I mean, for one thing, it would be even more difficult for me than Getting More Exercise and Eating Healthy. Maybe I could try it until July? First six months? First three months? Until Valentine's Day? The rest of this month? No books today. Let's try that....

I do, however, need to buy Jack some flea stuff, as I'm out again. Fortunately, they carry the stuff at WickedMart now, so I don't have to drive all the way out to the vet's office. I do think it's cheaper at the vet's office (you get more doses, for one thing), but I don't like going out there in the winter if I don't have to, since it's way the heck out in the country, and depending on the roads and/or traffic, can take as much as half an hour to get there from my house. Whereas WickedMart is much closer. Sometimes, paying more is actually worth it in time and effort saved.

Today at work, I need to get to my recerts. If I need to request additional information on any of them, those letters need to go out today or tomorrow (have to allow ten days to get stuff in), because Last Day is next Friday. (Already? How do these things happen?)

Which means that I also need to find a birthday gift for my father, as next Friday is his birthday.


Oct. 9th, 2016 12:26 pm
malinaldarose: (Default)
It looks like tonight or tomorrow the furnace will have to be turned on. It was 71.5° in here yesterday morning when I got up; this morning, it was 66°, and the high temperature for the day is not supposed to be out of the mid-50s, and no sun, so the house probably won't warm up on its own. *sigh* I knew the day was coming, of course, but I hate having to turn the furnace on. For one thing, it's original to the house (so far as I know), and it frightens me. The guy I had look at it a few years ago told me that they don't make parts for it any longer, so if anything happens to it, it will have to be replaced, and to do that, I'll either have to max out a credit card or get a loan.

Maybe I should just go ahead and do it and stop being afraid of having the heat on....

Auntie and Nuncle are -- probably -- on their way home. I think they traditionally have breakfast with his parents before they leave town, but Auntie wasn't sure whether they would today or not since his parents are pretty devout Catholics and it's Sunday. But since it's just after noon, I'm assuming that they're on their way. They were originally going to stay until Tuesday, but Nuncle had had enough of people by Friday (they came in last Tuesday) and decreed that they were leaving today.

Friday, Auntie spent the morning at the facility with Gram, then I picked her up at lunch time. We went back to the house, had lunch (and I really am not pleased with the sandwich meat and bread that my mother provided for them), walked the dogs, then Auntie and I went to the bank so that we could go through the safe deposit boxes (hers and Gram's) and inventory the contents. Gram's got all sorts of birth certificates and such in hers -- interesting reading. Auntie put me on her box so that if she needs something and can't get back here, I can retrieve it for her.

Then we came back to my house so I could feed Kethri, and arranged to meet Nuncle at Friendly's for dinner. We had a good time, and the food was pretty decent. My Auntie and Nuncle like kids (more than I do, anyway), and were watching a few that were supposedly cute. I was facing the other way, so I don't know.

We visited Gram for a few minutes, then headed back to the house (Gram's) to walk the dogs, then watched a bit of TV and chatted before I came home -- quite late, so I didn't end up going to bed until almost midnight. And this is why I say it's easier when I visit them because I can just toddle off to bed instead of driving across town.

Yesterday was basically more of the same without the bank visit (being Saturday and all). I actually cooked lunch for them (at Gram's house); I made tuna fish here, then stopped on my way across town to buy a small loaf of proper bread, and we had tuna melts and french fries. The fries were left over from our visit to Friendly's -- they reheat really nicely; put them in a cold oven, set it for 350° and the timer for 15 minutes, and they come out piping hot and nicely crispy, as well as losing some of the grease onto the cookie sheet. Then there was dog-walking, a short visit to Grama, a grocery store run, and back to Gram's house for a bit.

We had originally planned to take dinner in to Gram's room, but when we asked what she wanted, she made it sound like she wanted to go out, so we ended up back at Friendly's again. I have to say that the food was completely awful last night, and a stark contrast to Friday. My club sandwich that was supposed to have bacon on it had no bacon on it, and I don't think Gram's did, either, while Nuncle's BLT had no tomato, and Auntie's soup was cold. She did send it back to be reheated, and she said it was perfect after that.

But the topper? When we finally got Gram settled in my van and Auntie and Nuncle were walking to theirs, Gram said, "Well, that plan went all flopsy, didn't it." "What plan?" I said. "You were going to bring dinner in," Gram said. Whereupon I banged my head against the steering wheel for a few minutes....

So I am -- understandably, I think -- rather tired today, after three days of ramming around. But instead of having a pajama day in my chilly house, I'm leaving very shortly to go see Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children, which on the marquee is just abbreviated to "Mrs Peregrine." I don't even really want to see the movie, but I think J1 will be there with my share of the Delta reimbursement, and I desperately need the money, so I'll be there. BFT was crazy about those books; she loved them so much that she actually gave me the first one for Xmas last year (and I didn't tell her I already had a copy). I did read it, but I wasn't all that taken with it. Still, as I often say, if we all had the same taste, then all movies would be 8 Mile. (And don't ask me why I picked that particular film; I have no idea.)

Tomorrow will be no more restful as I had already committed to going to the big craft show with BFT. That will apparently be An Adventure.

Much Cooler

Aug. 7th, 2016 08:22 am
malinaldarose: (Default)
After the unpleasant start, yesterday turned into a gorgeous day. The sun came out and the humidity went down. It was breezy and a few degrees cooler, but the lower humidity made it seem much cooler. Just a Nice Day, and I took advantage of it by reading on the patio instead of doing any of the things I had planned to -- which means I need to do them today, of course.

It is now Countdown To Alaska. I checked the long range forecast for Ketchikan this morning, and the forecast temps are all in the 60s. That's...definitely sweater weather for me. I'll probably pack a couple of summer-weight sweaters, some long-sleeved tees, and some scarves. We'll see -- I need to start packing today (BFT told me yesterday that she is almost ready to go already; she has her carry-on packed, and has her clothing for her suitcase laid out to go), but by "packing" I mean "go stand in front of a mirror trying clothes on to determine which ones are suitable to go." And by that I mean "suitable 'smart casual' and 'faux-formal' clothes" for shipboard activities. black skirt and a couple of tops and my new blue skirt and a couple of tops, and finish hemming my new tan pants so they can go.

I'm going to end up over-packed, of course -- I didn't wear half the clothes I dragged to London and Paris last year -- but I'm less concerned about it than I might be as we'll be in one place for the whole trip and won't have to be lugging the suitcases about once we get there. We may even unpack.

I should make sure my camera batteries are charged properly.

I did go out and get my roots touched up yesterday, and watched an interesting dance. The stylist had three appointments at roughly the same time: an old lady with a weekly perm appointment, another slightly-younger old lady in for a cut, and me in for a color and trim. And we rotated through his chair, and the dryer chairs, and the sink. While the perm was baking, he did my roots. While my roots were baking, he did the cut, and did the next step of the perm. The cut lady left and he moved the perm lady to his chair, then moved me to the sink and washed my hair, then moved me back to the dryer chair (and my book) and finished up with the perm lady, and she left. Then he moved me to his chair, trimmed my hair, dried it (we talked about his upcoming vacation, and cruises), and then he was ready for his next appointment. All very gracefully done.

On my way home, I stopped and did a bit of shopping -- bought a dress at Old Navy and a bag at WickedMart that will probably do for a camera bag; it is considerably lighter than the bag I currently use. On the other hand it just now occurred to me that it's not waterproof, and if there's rain (and the Ketchican forecast is for showers the day we're supposed to be there).... Hmmmm.

When I got home, I thought that I should really go out and mow the portions of my lawn that do need it, but...didn't want to. So I stayed on the patio with my book, which I finished last evening. I had finished Guy Gavriel Kay's The Lions of Al-Rassan on Friday evening, and wanted something that wasn't going to make me weep for hours (because GGK always does), so I read the next Phryne Fisher book, Urn Burial. Since this one was about a murder in a house party, it felt half like a Georgette Heyer mystery (and I love those), plus it had the fabulous Phryne Fisher. So it was all good. First time I've read a book in a single day in a good long while, though. And now I have to decide whether to move on to the next one (I buy them two at a time) or find something else that's not going to take a whole week to read (because I don't want to be in the middle of something and have to lug it on vacation with me). Or maybe I should just read something that's already on my Kindle....
malinaldarose: (Default)
There was a shooting here yesterday afternoon. Well, not here. Uptown at the courthouse. I know it's been all over the news because when MyAuntie talked to Gram last night, the first thing she asked was about it. Auntie was kind of hoping that it wouldn't make the national news, but of course it did. Anyway. Apparently what happened is that a prisoner being moved from a jail cell to a courtroom got hold of a deputy's gun and started shooting. The deputy is in the hospital, as is another person. Two bailiffs and the shooter were killed. I see that they've released their names this morning; they hadn't last night. That'll make Gram happy -- she was obsessing about not having enough details last night.

I also learned this morning that my office building was evacuated last Friday morning for a couple of hours because of a suspicious package (which turned out to be misplaced mail). When I saw the headline, I was confused because I was there on Friday and certainly didn't remember being evacuated, but then I remembered that I actually had a doctor appointment Friday morning and then took an extra hour to get a start on packing, and by the time I went in, the building had been cleared. Funny that no one mentioned it.

Anyway. Yesterday, we were planning to go uptown early to take the dogs to the Dog Bakery, but the guy that MyNuncle is working with on a software project called and didn't let him off the phone until almost noon. MyAuntie and I ended up taking the dogs for a quick walk by ourselves around 11:00 before it got to be too terribly hot.

Saturday when I got here, it was lovely, but it has been getting steadily hotter. It was 90° yesterday and extremely humid. My aunt and uncle have air conditioning, which I normally can't stand, but for which I was very happy last evening. The back part of the house gets especially warm because they leave the back door open so the dogs can come and go as they please. (And that also explains why I just had a mosquito try to bite my freakin' eye. Little bitch is dead now. (No, I did not squish her into my eye. Ugh.))

Anyway. There is a huge rummage sale to benefit a private school and we went out there yesterday afternoon. I spent nearly $20 on books and some bracelets, and Auntie spent nearly $20 on books for Grama. It occurred to me this morning that I want to go back out there to clean out their Sci Fi books (they had most of the Darkover books, a good chunk of Piers Anthony, and lots of other good stuff) for Niece. She is going to be 16 this year, so I think she is finally old enough for Darkover and Xanth and Earthsea. Well, I think Earthsea is YA, anyway, but....

Nuncle is already on the phone with the Software Guy. Auntie isn't up yet, but probably will be soon, as it is just after 9:00. I've been up for two hours, and will probably switch from noodling on my laptop to reading on my tablet. I finished Season 1 of Shadow Unit yesterday evening, other than the last few deleted scenes. I will probably start Season 2 today. I did bring a book to read, but probably will stick with Shadow Unit.

I'm not certain what our plan is for today. We would still like to take the dogs up to Fuzzy Butz, but I see that there's going to be some sort of memorial walk for the bailiffs that were killed yesterday, so getting uptown might be problematic. Maybe we'll do stuff in the opposite direction, like going back to the rummage sale or out to the used book store. (I never buy a lot there; they have terrible prices for used books.)

It's supposed to be hot again today. I let my hair air-dry yesterday (which meant it was still slightly damp at bedtime), and I straightened it this morning because even if it's hotter than sin out there, if my hair is straight, it somehow feels cooler....


Apr. 3rd, 2016 12:44 pm
malinaldarose: (Default)
I am sitting in the back room -- where, I might add, it is colder than the rest of the house -- with my laptop. Jack is outside, and although he has proven trustworthy when out on his own, I prefer to be where I can check on him every couple of minutes. He loves being outside, and now that the weather is getting better, I have been indulging him.

Well. The weather was getting better, anyway. It snowed yesterday, and according to the weather wiseacres, we can expect more snow today. At the moment, however, it's almost sunny (almost) and the only snow in the air is the air. It's not actively snowing.

Walkies, I have to say, though, was a stone-cold bitch this morning. At one point, we turned a corner, facing west and I could see the wave of snow rolling at us. Most unpleasant. Jack didn't like it much, either; he stopped a few times to chew ice out of his paws -- and we only went around the block. And not the Big Block, either, but the one that takes ten minutes, max.

I just got up to check on Jack. He has moved from just under the window to over by the oak tree, facing into K's yard. He is hoping for some doggy action, though the last time there was doggy action, it was mostly Morty and Teddy yelling at him to get the heck away from the fence. Buck was visiting yesterday, and Jack would dearly love to play with Buck, who is his size (roughly) unlike Morty and Teddy. But Morty and Teddy don't want him to play with Buck, and Buck spends most of his time playing with Morty, and K spends a lot of time trying to get them to stop. I don't think she really understands dogs...the only time Morty is in danger from Buck (who she thinks is too big and too rough) is when she tries to interfere. I've watched them, and Buck is only mouthing. There are no teeth involved.

Speaking of neighborhood animals, I'm concerned for the Cat Colony. I haven't seen much of them the last several days. I think maybe the Crazy Cat Lady is gone. The bowls disappeared from her side porch yesterday between morning walkies and afternoon walkies, and the wooden box that was on her front porch, and which I am certain was a Cat Shelter, and which always had a black cat lounging on it, is gone. I wouldn't have expected them to disperse so quickly if they were no longer being fed, but they aren't lounging about her yard anymore, either. I'm really hoping that no one has poisoned them or something.

And because I'm a wretched excuse for a human being, I am more concerned about the cats than I am about the woman.
I am still watching Leverage and really enjoying it. The most recent episode I watched had Wil Wheaton as one of the guest stars, and a Star Trek pun was made. I can really appreciate a show that makes sci fi puns.

I am also watching The Tomorrow People, which was my first fandom love, even before Star Trek. I was writing TP stories in junior high (thirty-some odd years ago) before I knew that there even was such a thing as fan fiction. My aim was to become a script writer for the show...which had been cancelled a year or so before I first saw it. It was The Tomorrow People which led me to Doctor Who, because if I loved the TP so much, then surely I'd love this other British thing, right?

However, I'm not thirteen anymore, so while I can put up with the terrible special effects, I am seeing all the padding in the episodes for what it is: an attempt to draw each half hour episode of each four-part story out for the full half hour...and it's a bit annoying. But, well, first love and all that. Besides, if it gets too annoying, I can always fast forward, but it's mostly not worth the effort.

As for reading...well, I did say some weeks back that I thought this was going to be a year of rereading some favorites, and right now I am reading The Keltiad, and have the newest Rennie Stride book on order. Since Guy Gavriel Kay is also coming out with a new book this spring, I think his last two will probably be next. There's usually a new Aunt Dimity book about this time of year, too, and the latest Patricia McKillip book is also out -- but those are new. I also plan to read at least one of the Shannara books, and the Cassie Palmer and Kate Daniels books as well. Full slate....

Hmf. It's starting to snow in earnest. Time to go get Jack and bring him back inside....
malinaldarose: (Default)
I just deleted the bio section of my profile. I've been meaning to rewrite it for years, since it talked about a beloved husband and four dogs and three cats. Only two of that set of eight entities are still with me. I suppose eventually I'll put something else in there. Or maybe I won't. I'm not particularly good at that sort of thing.

Yesterday's weather was quite nice for the beginning of March: sunny, temps in the 60s. As I was leaving for lunch yesterday, people returning from their earlier lunch hours kept telling me that I wouldn't want to go back. It occurred to me that such a statement assumes I ever wanted to go back to begin with, which...not so much. It's supposed to be a bit warmer today, but drizzly, I think. When Jack and I went for walkies -- late because I overslept -- the pavement had that dappled look it gets after rain that never progresses beyond a good hard sprinkle, but the grass wasn't wet.

My reading has definitely slowed significantly since I finished the Harry Dresden books, but I finished my twentieth book for the year last evening: Svaha by Charles de Lint. I have decided that this will likely be a year of rereading, as I want to delve back into the works of some of my favorites that I haven't read in years. Svaha, for instance. This may have been the third time I've read it, but it may only have been the second. My copy is a first edition paperback; the pages have passed yellow and gone straight to tan. I thought about buying the Kindle version, but I don't actually like reading on my Kindle -- and I find the cost of e-books offensive¹, so.... *shrug*

I see, upon re-reading that paragraph, that I make it sound as though Svaha is a favorite book. It actually isn't. I don't got in for post-apocalyptic dystopias, much. No, it's the author who is a favorite, though my favorite of his works are The Riddle of the Wren and Moonheart, both of which I have definitely read more than twice.

Over the weekend, I took down an organizer/mail sorter thingy that had been hanging in the kitchen for fifteen and a half years. It was a wedding gift from the nice people across the street (we invited all of our immediate neighbors to our wedding, since we'd lived here for six months by the time we got married and they were all nice people and since it was going to cause a lot of traffice since we were getting married in the backyard). HTWIWM used to keep his wedding ring on the hooks at the bottom of it when he was going to be doing something where he shouldn't be wearing rings. I still occasionally looked for his ring to be hanging there. Anyway. I hadn't really used it for ages, and it was a symbol of something long gone, so I decided to take it down and replace it with something else. It was, of course, screwed into place with his favorite three-inch drywall screws, so getting it down was a bit of a job, and now there are screw holes in the panelling², but that's okay; I'll cover them. The organizer went straight to the garage and will go in my next garage sale.

Anyway, what I was trying to say is that my kitchen looks weird without this thing hanging on the wall. It wasn't huge, but it wasn't small, either, and it was smack in the middle of that section of wall. So the whole kitchen looks kind of empty without it. I can't quite decide whether to put a selection of photographs there, or some of the art I've acquired over the years. I remember once seeing a nice arrangement of photos of France and trivets in a kitchen that I quite liked. Okay, fine, it was HTWIWM's kitchen back when he was still He With Whom I Am Having A Long Distance Relationship, and the photos were probably taken and arranged by his ex-girlfriend who is a nice person with whom I am friends on FB, mostly because I contacted her there to return some of her property that I found in my house after he took off.

I had vague thoughts of putting up a photo I took of the Leaning Tower of Pisa in the kitchen because I took it while leaning back from my chair at a cafe (well, the Italian version, anyway) down the street. It's a busy street scene with the Tower in the background, and it's one of my favorite of my Italy photos, none of which have ever been framed and hung.
¹ If I'm going to pay that much, I want something tangible.

² Who panels a kitchen³, for fuck's sake?

³ I loathe panelling, and great chunks of the house are panelled. Paneled?
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My brain decided that I needed to see 3:30 a.m. Or maybe my bladder decided it and my brain just tagged along for the ride. Either way, it meant that by 4:00 a.m., I was deciding which cases I was going to work on today. I did manage to fall back asleep enough to dream about stray cats, though.

The moon was setting when Jack and I went out for walkies. Big and yellow and nearly full. Full tonight, I should think...and yes, my calendar says full tonight.

It was a quiet weekend chez moi. I ran errands on Saturday, of course, but was done with those by midmorning. I did go to Jo-Ann's and spend rather more money than I should have on items in their new Paris-themed collection, but justified it by saying that I didn't bring any touristy souvenirs home and the tote bag and free wristlet qualify. As for the keychains, well, I am starting to collect interesting ones, and they make nice accents in my cubicle.

I didn't accomplish much of anything this weekend, though. Just my regular chores, really, and not even all of those -- I didn't vacuum, for instance. I did flip the mattress when I changed the bedding, and spent a couple of hours yesterday cooking, so....

Speaking of bedding, a while back, I ordered a comforter set from Zulily. King-size comforter, two throw pillows, two shams, and a bedskirt, for under $50. I was quite pleased with myself. It took about three weeks for them to get here, and when they did, I was really pleased. Loved the color(s) (reversible). And then I opened the package. The white side of the comforter (the side meant to be in) was soft and pretty. The purple side (meant to be out) was pretty, but not at all soft, and it rustled. It felt a bit like plastic, and I have to wonder if it was flame-retardant at all. It was like a sleeping bag, in fact, with a soft interior and nylon shell, and all of the purple fabric on the shams, throw pillows and bed skirt was the same. I was really disappointed. I won't be using it. Maybe I'll save it for my sister's wedding, since she's supposed to be marrying Number 5 this summer.

I started watching Space: 1999 yesterday; it's available on Hulu. The first episode is a bit slow, but the pace picks up some after that. When the show originally aired, I was...eight or so. Since I remember it in color, I must have seen it at my grandparents' house (we only had a black and white TV until I was about 13). I don't remember much about it other than it terrified me -- but then, so did Star Trek at that age. (Trivia: Martin Landau, who starred in Space: 1999 was almost cast as Spock in Star Trek...or so I recall reading somewhere.)

It's interesting watching TV shows from my childhood as an adult, especially seeing actors that I know from much later things. Ian McShane, for instance, was in one of the episodes I watched last night. I've never seen Lovejoy, but I've seen a lot of advertising for it, and I've seen him in a couple of other things. So I'm staring at this guy, trying to figure out why he looks so familiar, and it finally hits me right before his name comes up in the opening titles. "Surely that's not Ian Mc.... Okay. I guess it is, then."

I am currently reading Alan Dean Foster's novelization of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. It's like watching the movie in slow motion with the dialogue being not quite right. I need to find my copy of Splinter of the Mind's Eye and re-read it. Talk about your alternate universes.... (In which Luke and Leia go off somewhere or other, crash land on a planet they've never been to, ride giant lily pads, and Luke meets Darth Vader in person. Oh, and Luke gets the girl. Yeah -- they weren't siblings, yet....)
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This evening is the beginning of a mini-vacation; we have Monday off for Presidents Day, so I added Friday and Tuesday to make a five-day weekend. I am facing -- with great pleasure -- the prospect of not having The Gecko in my house until next Wednesday, of not having to worry about things disappearing out of my fridge, of being able to leave my blankie and pillows on the couch, and of not having to liberally spray my chair and ottoman with Febreeze every day. I have no real plans for the weekend, other than to avoid going out on Saturday if at all possible as it is supposed to be frigid, and to go see Deadpool on Sunday with BFT. I would also like to see Hail, Caesar, but we'll see about that one; I wouldn't be terribly upset if I missed it and had to wait for the DVD. Actually, I'm not all that looking forward to Deadpool, but we do go see Marvel movies on opening weekend....

It has been a really long, drawn-out week. I was beginning to wonder if 4:00 p.m. on Thursday would ever arrive.

My reading seems to have slowed down a bit. I read a dozen books in January, but have only finished one in February. I am beginning the last of the Dresden books, and am not sure where to go from here. I have really enjoyed these; they're part of the reason I was able to get to 75 books for 2015; before I started reading them, it had been a long time since I spent an entire evening reading. Perhaps I'll go to the Kushiel series; I have read the first two books, but never read the third in the first trilogy, and now there are...what, two? more trilogies? Three? They reminded me a lot of Guy Gavriel Kay...who is due to have a new book out in a few months, so maybe I should read a couple of his, as well.

I have also finished the second season and begun the third season of Elementary. When I sit down to watch it, I watch two or three episodes at a time. That's probably what I'm going to do with this evening, in fact. MyAuntie and I were talking about it the last time I called her; she was complaining about the character of Kitty, saying that she and MyNuncle stopped watching the show for a while, but I rather like her. It's early days, yet, though; I'm not yet to the halfway mark in the season....

Snow Day

Jan. 13th, 2016 09:14 am
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This morning's walk was not pleasant. Jack and I ended up walking pretty much down the middle of the road in the tracks of someone who had to be out early because we had about a foot of snow and the plow hadn't been through yet. The plow didn't go through until we were over on the next street, walking through tracks there, too. I decided to take a snow day before we even got back from our walk. I may have a snowblower now, but it will still take a long time to get the van free, and I may choose to simply shovel most of the driveway because the snowblower is really too heavy for me. It's just too heavy, but it is too heavy. My father picked it out, and he picked one that he could handle easily. While I was pleased with the gift, if they had let me pick it out, it might have made things easier, especially as once the slab in front of the garage door heaves and blocks the door, I have to keep the thing in the breezeway and I can't muscle it up the steps...and the board I was going to use as a ramp is currently blocking the hole Jack made in the laundry room wall....

Anyway. It is now 9:00 a.m., and I will have to go out shortly, I suppose, and start clearing snow. A friend of mine posted on FB about how her neighbors cleared her walks and driveway for her, but no one will do that here. If the snow hadn't been quite so deep, I'd've just driven out of the driveway and asked my brother to run the snowblower for me when he dropped the Ravenous Gecko off, but.... Eh, well.

I had the shortest visit to my gyn's office ever yesterday. I expected to sit in the waiting room for at least an hour before I was seen, and then I expected to sit begowned and freezing in the exam room for half an hour at least, but I didn't even have a chance to open my book in the waiting room and read perhaps a page in the exam room, where it was so warm that I ended up ditching the shawl I had brought with me.

I like my doctor. We had a cheerful conversation about visiting Paris; he has been there twice and wants to go back, next time in summer so that he can see the gardens at Versailles. He scolded me for not having a mammogram last year and for putting off visiting him with this twinge in my side (another ultrasound scheduled, yay), because I can't be a world traveler if I'm too ill to travel. But even with a ten minute conversation before the exam, I was in and out in forty-five minutes -- absolutely unheard of. I had planned to be there for at least two, and probably two and a half hours. (Someone must have complained a lot, or maybe they had a lot of cancellations.) So I ran an errand for Grama and went to see her for an hour before lunch, then went home, had lunch, and finally went to work, where I accomplished absolutely nothing.

I finished Changes last night, which is the somethingteenth book in the Harry Dresden series, and I will finish Side Jobs later today; I got to the last story included in that latter (which is an anthology) and discovered that it takes place directly after Changes, so I had to set it aside. This morning, I have also ordered the last three books in the series from various Amazon sellers. I really love these books. I have never blazed through a lengthy series like this, ever. Even the Discworld books (and I came to Discworld late, so there were already a lot of books in the series), I have read here and there, catch as catch can. But I've been reading the Dresden books steadily since...September? October? Whenever I started them.

My next book will probably be Ruddy Gore by Kerry Greenwood, which is the...sixth? book in the Phryne Fisher mystery series. I like these a great deal, also. They sort of remind me of Georgette Heyer's mysteries, which are breezy and fun...despite the several murders per book.

Right. Snow. Shoveling. Tallyho.
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I'm not sure what to make of this: after all the fuss of this past week, no one has disturbed me today. Granted, the day is only half over; my mother might still call in some sort of panic, though since Gram has been moved to the rehab unit from Isolation, I think we're all set for now. Yesterday, I made the mistake of calling my mother from the assisted living place (since I was there paying Gram's rent, anyway) to see if there was anything I should pick up, with the result that I was on the phone with my mother for fifteen minutes, then spent another fifteen minutes trying to find clothing for Gram. I had to cross town to go to the hospital, then found, after parking in the back lot, that non-staff are no longer allowed to enter the hospital through the back doors, which meant hiking all around the building. I swear, by the time I walked from my car to my grandmother's room, then back to my car, I probably did half a mile -- no exaggeration. And when I got upstairs, another therapist -- Gram's fourth for the day! -- was just getting ready to visit, so I basically dropped the clothing and ran.

My mother called me last night. I was on the couch watching "Silence in the Library," and a telephone was ringing onscreen, so I didn't realize that my own phone as ringing until the answering machine picked up, but she hung up before I got to the phone, and I didn't call her back. So far today, I haven't heard from her at all.

No news is good news, eh?

I started reading around 9:00 a.m., and finished Turn Coat (The Dresden Files #somethingteen) around lunchtime. I was already halfway through it, but there's Book Number One for 2016. And because I couldn't think of anything better to do this afternoon, I started Blood and Circuses the next book in the Phryne Fisher series by Kerry Greenwood. I think this one was made into an episode of the television series, but I don't remember whodunnit -- other than it's not the person who has been arrested for it, of course.

I am freezing today, and cannot seem to get warm, even under my lovely blankie, so I suspect that after I walk Jack (which will happen shortly), there will be either hot chocolate or chai. I may get out the good chocolate and the milk and make Real Hot Chocolate (especially as that half gallon jug of milk is well past the sell by date).

The package of hamburger in the fridge finally got used yesterday. I had been planning to cook all week, but then Things Happened With Gram, and every time I got ready to cook, I got interrupted and it ended up being too late to mess with. So yesterday afternoon I made a meatloaf, then while that was baking, I got cheeseburger soup started in the crockpot. (And by the time I finished chopping the onion and garlic and celery, cooking same, then browning the hamburger, then doing the bit with the broth and flour, the meatloaf was done. Fifteen minutes' prep time, my ass.) So tonight, I will have meatloaf and some sort of veg for dinner. Maybe roasted broccoli? Maybe grilled beans (on the teensy George Foreman grill)? Maybe just a salad? Maybe raw carrots and celery? Maybe even creamed corn if I have a can in the cupboard. (I should clean out those cans.) We'll see.

Right. Time to go put some shoes on, drag the dog 'round the block, and see if I can get warm....
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I have labeled it "Works Read," instead of "Books Read" because I read a lot of fan fiction and I have included in the list any works of novel length. Also, a few of these were little more than pamphlets, but since they were in the shape of books, I've included them....

1. Sisters Grim: The Unusual Suspects by Michael Buckley
2. As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales From the Making of The Princess Bride by Cary Elwes & Joe Layden
3. Strange Turns by LadyShadowdrake
4. The Princess Bride by William Goldman
5. Tom Swift Jr. and His Diving Seacopter by Victor Appleton II
6. Shades of Milk and Honey by Mary Robinette Kowal
7. Blood Red by Mercedes Lackey
8. Summer Falls and Other Stories by James Goss and Justin Richards (Doctor Who)
9. Glamour in Glass by Mary Robinette Kowal
10. Cocaine Blues by Kerry Greenwood (Phryne Fisher Mysteries)
11. The Secret of the Old Clock by Carolyn Keene (Nancy Drew)
12. A Study in Silks by Emma Jane Holloway
13. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J. K. Rowling
14. Attachments by Greer Watson
15. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J. K. Rowling
16. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling
17. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
18. Jim Henson's Labyrinth by A. C. H. Smith
19. Hollow Your Bones Like A Bird's by SciFiGrl47
20. The Dark Crystal by A. C. H. Smith
21. Children of the Night by Mercedes Lackey (Diana Tregarde)
22. The Hidden Staircase by Carolyn Keene (Nancy Drew)
23. The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison
24. Phoenix Burning by Yahtzee
25. Burning Water by Mercedes Lackey (Diana Tregarde)
26. Jinx High by Mercedes Lackey (Diana Tregarde)
27. Tom Swift On The Phantom Satellite by Victor Appleton II
28. Sacred Ground by Mercedes Lackey
29. Trio of Sorcery by Mercedes Lackey
30. Thud by Terry Pratchett
31 - 33. How Steve Rogers Got His Groove Back (series by Rainne)
34. The Catacombs of Paris by Gilles Thomas
35. Paris Souterrain by Emmanuel Gaffard
36. Stonehenge by Robin Heath
37. Avebury by Evelyn Francis
38. His Fate Will Be Unlearned by SciFiGrl47
39. The Ghosts of War by SciFiGrl47
40. Stories Told With Silence by SciFiGrl47
41. Fairy Tales and Clockwork Hearts by SciFiGrl47
42. Through The Dark Tide of Memory by SciFiGrl47
43. Dodger by Terry Pratchett
44. Mary Poppins by P. L. Travers
45. Mary Poppins Returns by P. L. Travers
46. The Mont St-Michel Manuscripts by Jean-Luc Leservoisier
47. Flying Too High by Kerry Greenwood (Phryne Fisher)
48. Murder on the Ballarat Train by Kerry Greenwood (Phryne Fisher)
49. Lammas Night by Katherine Kurtz
50 - 51. You Or Someone Like You by SciFiGrl47
52. The Shepherd's Crown by Terry Pratchett
53. Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen
54. Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen
55. First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen
56. Storm Front by Jim Butcher (The Dresden Files)
57. Fool Moon by Jim Butcher (Dresden)
58. Grave Peril by Jim Butcher (Dresden)
59. Summer Knight by Jim Butcher (Dresden)
60. Death Masks by Jim Butcher (Dresden)
61. Blood Rites by Jim Butcher (Dresden)
62. Dead Beat by Jim Butcher (Dresden)
63. Death at Victoria Dock by Kerry Greenwood (Phryne Fisher)
64. The Green Mill Murder by Kerry Greenwood (Phryne Fisher)
65. Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
66. Proven Guilty by Jim Butcher (Dresden)
67. White Night by Jim Butcher (Dresden)
68. Magazineverse (series) by Copperbadge
69. Mary Poppins Opens The Door by P. L. Travers
70. Small Favor by Jim Butcher (Dresden)
71. Mary Poppins in the Park by P. L. Travers
72. Star Wars: Smuggler's Run by Greg Rucka
73. Star Wars: The Weapon of a Jedi by Jason Fry
74. Star Wars: Moving Target by Cecil Castelucci and Jason Fry
75. Star Wars: Before The Awakening by Greg Rucka
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So, Christmas dinner happened, and it was less onerous than some years. Grama has a terrible cough; my mother thinks she has bronchitis, but can't get Gram to agree to go to the ER or urgent care. She will only see her own doctor, and it could be a couple of weeks before she can get in. So the nurse at the facility is keeping an eye on her and will call Mom if she thinks Gram needs to go to the ER.

One thing about having Cousin V-Jer at a function: she talks enough that Mom and Gram can't get down to fighting.

When Gram decided she wanted to go home, Mom and Dad loaded her into the truck, but then there wasn't room enough left for Mom, so she stayed behind with me. She tried to convince me that the Ravenous Gecko is a nice, sweet young woman. She also told me that my brother himself realizes that the RG will never be able to survive on her own. We discussed whether or not they should apply for SSI for her, but Mom said they wouldn't do it. I almost asked why the fuck not since the Lizard's eldest daughter (another marriage) has received it all her life, but my reason for knowing that is HIPAA-protected, so I kept it behind my teeth. Barely. Mom may already know, but if she doesn't.... (Mom has tried to get me to talk to her about clients before; she had a problem with a woman in her last congregation leaving the service early and going through the pockets of the coats on the coat racks and stealing things, and she tried to get me to say whether or not the woman was one of my clients. She was, but I wouldn't tell my mother that.)

Anyway. Dinner was eaten, gifts were exchanged (my mother quite liked the photo I gave her and Dad from Stonehenge; it's not one of the standard shots of the entire monument silhouetted against the sky, but a close up of a couple of the trilithons. I quite like it and may frame a copy for myself. My mother has apparently decided that I need more purple in my life (probably because I hung purple curtains in my green living room), so she gave me a purple sweater, a purple toiletry bag that turned out to be advertising swag from a drug company -- Mom was surprised and annoyed at that; I wonder where she got it from -- a lavender scarf/shawl, and a purple wallet. She also gave me a couple of sweatshirts, one of which was identical to one she gave me last year.

After everyone left, I settled down on the couch to watch the rest of the Doctor Who marathon and then the Christmas special. I was amused by it, but had hoped that River would recognize the Doctor sooner (and that's not really a spoiler, since it was in the advertising that she didn't know him). Also...the last part of it made me cry. I may have to go back and rewatch all the River episodes now, especially "Silence in the Library"/"The Forest of the Dead." I haven't seen those since they were originally aired. (Sometimes, when people ask me if I'm not afraid of walking the dog in the dark, I want to say, "It's not like the Vashta Nerada are going to get us," but they wouldn't understand and it'd take too long to explain.

Today's plan is to go to the first matinee showing of Star Wars and hope that people are still sleeping off the tryptophan, so that I can watch it in peace. The first show is truly a matinee: it starts at 9:30 a.m. I think Jack will be all right; we've broken the destruction habit for now. It's only if I continue to leave him alone that he'll backslide. And that's not going to happen.

Which reminds me: Mom said that she heard that the dog guy is rough with people's dogs, which is what I was afraid of. I don't want Jack further traumatized.

At some point, Bird is going to show up with Niece. I am debating whether to give her a couple of books. Not really a Christmas present, since I don't give those kids presents, but more of a "Here, I have extra copies of these." She's fifteen, now, and I would actually like to give her my extra copies of Tigana and The Lions of Al-Rassan, but don't know whether they're appropriate. I guess it's sort of hypocritical of me, since I was reading Stephen R. Donaldson when I was younger than that (it's how I met one of my high school boyfriends; he was reading Lord Foul's Bane about a month after I had read it). I know she reads Tolkien, because she absconded with one of my copies of The Two Towers. Maybe I'll just go through my bookshelves and give her a pile of stuff. Some Lackey, some GGK, some CdL.

And maybe I won't, because I hoard books like a non-firebreathing dragon....
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I'm a little bit worried about what I'm going to find when I come home for lunch. Jack has been clingy; he even stayed downstairs last night when I was watching a movie, though he did spend a chunk of that time in the library. He has decided that he likes the far corner of that room. Not sure why, exactly; he generally puts his head against something hard.

He did stay on the floor last night, which rather surprised me. I do not for an instant think that that discussion has ended, but I have to say that the reprieve was welcome.

I finished The Green Mill Murder last night, but instead of moving back to the Dresden books as I had planned, I am now reading Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children. BFT recommends it so highly that she actually gave me a copy for my birthday, which is not something we generally do. We have similar tastes in books, but we also recognize that if we want a book, we're going to get it. And, in fact, I already had a copy; I just hadn't read it yet. I'm not telling her that, of course....

I don't want to go to work today, but that's not a huge surprise, right? I think I am going to ask for the three days of Thanksgiving week off. I may or may not have the back room ready to paint by then...or if the ten day forecast looks encouraging, maybe I'll just head for Michigan. (If there's no snow in the forecast....)

Ah, well. I suppose I have wasted just enough time that I need to go put my coat on....
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The weather has warmed up a touch, and the furnace is back off. Well, it was turned off the other evening so that Dad could take a look at it, and I haven't needed to turn it back on again. Sunday ended up being a gorgeous day after a dubious start. Yesterday was the same. My neighbors apparently spent much of the afternoon preparing the yard for winter. All the decorative grasses and the bush by the fence were cut back, and G was pulling up plants while K mowed when I got back from walking Jack.

My winter prep, by contrast, will be to mulch the leaves -- and that's only if I don't manage to screw up the lawnmower before the last leaves fall like I did last year.

I have been looking at dogs again. The rescue whence I got Jack has some new dogs in, one of which seems quite suitable. Of course, they also still have the one I originally applied for.... The other rescue has never gotten back to me, so apparently my bit of levity on the application was not appreciated. I am not going to further humiliate myself by explaining, so I guess they're out. Original rescue is at the farmer's market every weekend, so I guess I'll go over there this weekend and see what's the what. Their adoption application is a million miles long, and I don't want to have to fill it out again if I don't need to. (It's something like seven pages and asks questions that I do not believe, frankly, they need the answers to.)

Back in 2008, after HTWIWM left the first time, I was part of an online book club to which the Twinkie also belonged. When she posted a review of one of the Harry Dresden books that mentioned how her "boyfriend" had been reading snippets of them to her, I did two things: I left the book club (because really? Rude much? She knew I was a member) and I got rid of all the Dresden novels in the house. Sir Knees was interested in them, so I gave them to him. Years later, I reacquired them, waiting until I could read them without thinking of her when I did. So here it is seven years later, and I decided to watch the television series, which I had also acquired on DVD but never seen. The first episode hooked me (though I kept waiting for the kid's mother to be a bad guy and I'm not sure why -- oh, wait. She looks like the actress who was one of the bad guys in Iron Man 3. That's probably why), so I decided it was time to read the books. And that's what I did last night. I spent all evening reading Storm Front. Very entertaining. I'm a little more than halfway through (I don't read as fast as I used to). Fun.

Aaand the dryer just stopped, so I suppose I need to get ready for work. Le sigh.
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Yesterday's trip north was entertaining. BFT and I left town around 10:00 and got back around 3:00. Water fell from the sky for much of the day, which made seeing out my back window without the wiper interesting. I used the defroster a lot to dry it off.

While we were in B&N, I saw tons of stuff that I really wanted, but I only came away with a few books. No Doctor Who toys, though the rubber Weeping Angels amuse me enough that I might have bought one had they not been filthy. Apparently lots of people like to squish them and they either don't have plastic coverings on their packaging, or don't have it any longer. I did buy an anthology that had DW stories by famous people including Neil Gaiman and Holly Black.

What else? Oh, I got a couple of different little map books for Paris and London, and BFT got a couple of yet different ones, so we should be reasonably well-supplied with maps. J2 is our navigatrix, in any case. One of the books I picked up will probably be more useful than the other, as there are contextual pop-up maps, which have much bigger print on them that my all-Paris or all-London maps. I'm actually going to have to carry my reading glasses just so I can read my all-city maps.

I also picked up an anthology of the first three Mrs. Jeffries mysteries, and looked for the next set of Miss Fisher mysteries, but I was drawing a blank on Kerry Greenwood's surname. (I seem to be getting more into mysteries since reading Georgette Heyer's and the Aunt Dimity series.) I also picked up the latest Kate Daniels book and the third Baskerville Affair book (a steampunkish series in which the main character is Sherlock Holmes' niece). And since she was watching Jack on not her usual day, I picked up a book on drawing for the Gecko...who did not, as usual, thank me, and who will probably not even bother to open it. She's reasonably talented at drawing, so I thought it would appeal. I should just keep my efforts to myself, I guess.

Now, the reason that we went yesterday is that we had both received coupons in the mail and we both wanted to get the hell outta Dodge for a bit. I completely forgot to use my coupons. Completely. Forgot. I was turning onto my street after picking Jack up when I remembered them.

Of course.

So I felt completely stupid. I mean, I wouldn't have saved too terribly much more money, and I can still use them online, but the whole purpose of the jaunt was to use those coupons. And I had them with me, so it's not like I left them at home. Stupid. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

At least I didn't buy a second copy of Good Omens or Thud. I was reasonably certain I had copies of both, and I do. So that's something, at least.


Feb. 6th, 2015 06:22 am
malinaldarose: (Default)
Short walkies this morning because it is entirely too cold out there (3°F with a wind chill of -11°) and I'm concerned about Jack's paws, even if he isn't. He'd go forever, even if he did have to do the Cold Paw Dance all the way. The result of short walkies is a little extra time, which I am clearly using productively. I could, I suppose, go in early, but that didn't work out so well for me the other day, so I won't.

And that brings me to the four day work week which Management is still moving forward on. Our last commissioner was opposed to it, so she went through the motions, but did her best to kill it, and it died. She insisted, for instance, that if we did it, we'd have to commit to it for a year. She wouldn't have anyone doing it and dropping out a few weeks later if it didn't work out for them. She wouldn't allow anyone to do it just over the summer. It was pretty much all or nothing.

The current commissioner is more flexible, so it's moving forward. (Well, he was a worker at the time of the previous attempt, so he knows what it's like to have it dashed.) I had originally voted for it, but with Jack I'm not certain I can do it after all. Well, we'll see if it actually happens; it still has to go through the legislature and the union.

Merlin is yelling at me to get out of his chair....

Recommendations were made elsenet for a friend to start reading the Dresden series. I have them also to be read, but have not yet been able to bring myself to read them because HTWIWM loved them and tried to get me to read them years ago. As I had other things on Mount TBR at the time, I did not. So he introduced the Twinkie to them, and I had the rare pleasure of reading her bleating in a forum she knew I was also a member of about reading them with her boyfriend...who was, of course, my husband. I am certain that she did it maliciously, because there was really no reason to tell everyone that she had her bare feet in his lap or whatever it was she said. So after I left that forum I got rid of the entire series since I had bought for him. I have since reacquired them, however, and was actually thinking of starting the series yesterday, as I was between books. But I got the second book in a different series in yesterday's mail, so I am reading that, instead. I will get to the Dresden series eventually. Maybe after I finish the Glamourist series.
malinaldarose: (Default)
I was going to run out to WickedMart this morning to see if they had a copy of HP & the Order of the Phoenix but I check the bookshelves there fairly frequently, and I don't recall seeing any Harry Potter books at all the last time I was there (a couple of days ago) so I guess I will continue to have a semi-leisurely morning. I had given my niece and nephew the first three books for their library (the only ones that were available on PaperbackSwap at the time). Niece was busy with The Two Towers, but Nephew practically devoured them. Bird said that he read Prisoner of Azkaban almost in one sitting. Fortunately, she told me this at work and fortunately, I keep paperback copies of the first four books at work, so I just gave her my work copy of Goblet of Fire. She is taking him to see his paternal grandparents for the next few days, then they fly out to Germany on Sunday. She thinks he'll have the book finished before they get back from Pittsburgh (where his grandparents live). (Niece has already gone home.) So now I'm scrambling to find the other books for him because not only do they have a flight to Germany, but they have a twelve-hour layover in NYC. (Some poor planning on Bird's part; they're leaving Buffalo at 6:30 a.m.) All of which means that I have to run up to the mall to check the Useless Excuse For A Bookstore to see if they have them, because even Amazon Prime wouldn't get them to me soon enough now. (If I'd had an extra day's warning, we probably could have managed it.)

I tell ya what, for kids who are readers, I am the best goddamned aunt in the universe.

BFT and I went to see Guardians of the Galaxy again last evening. It was just as funny the second time around, though we didn't wait for the stinger this time. Once is enough. Now, had it been the shawarma scene, I'd've stayed, 'cause that's always funny. I noticed that Quill had "12% of a plan." Is that going to be a running gag now? Not that I mind.

At this stage of the game, the plan for France is to definitely go self-directed. I think I might actually miss the tour bus, though. That was kinda fun, and it was a lot easier to snap photos out the windows that I think it will be with us all crammed into a little car. On the other hand, we can stop here and there for the purpose of taking photos, I guess. We'll be discussing it more before committing, though. It looks as though another of J1 and J2's sisters may be going with us; at least, she was on the email distribution list when J1 sent out a possible itinerary.

BFT and I are going to Sterling this weekend. She says that the last time she was there was nearly twenty years ago when she went with me and HWTIWM (before we were married). I think I remember that trip now; I think we went to see Shakespeare in Delaware Park on Friday evening; they were doing Much Ado About Nothing reset in the Old West, and the group's students were doing a 10-Minute Macbeth that was hilarious. Then we spent the night at A's apartment (HTWIWM, that is) and drove to Sterling in the morning. I had forgotten about that trip until she mentioned it. Well, I remembered Shakespeare in the Park, but had forgotten that it was connected to a Sterling trip.

J1 might go with us. It's a longish drive (three hours, no matter which route I choose...unless I take Sir Knees' ill-starred shortcut that took us five hours), but it should be fun. I warned BFT that I would be taking my TeenyTinyTARDIS as I am running out of photos for Tumblr and there are so many photo ops for it there that I won't be able to get them all...especially as it's Fantasy Weekend.


malinaldarose: (Default)

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