Don' Wanna

May. 10th, 2017 06:36 am
malinaldarose: (Default)
I'm tired. I know I say that a lot, but I am tired, and pretty much always in a state of holy fuck, could I use a nap. Right now, I could go back to bed and go to sleep late for work.

Mama Cat appears to have moved her kittens the night before last. I am not displeased by this. I was fretting about them being out there for multiple reasons. I would probably eventually have tried to catch them, and then what would I have done? The SPCA wouldn't take them without expecting me to pay for them. One of the local rescues might, but...I'm not really hot on the local rescues. Ah, well. Decision is no longer mine to make.

I was reasonably certain yesterday morning that they were gone, but when I let Jack out last night, I stayed on the couch in the breezeway where I could read and keep an eye both on the ramp and on Jack. It was actually nice, and I discovered that my old couch, despite its rattiness, is actually more comfortable than the new one. Figures, right?

I finished Iorich last night. That leaves Tiassa and Hawk and then I'll be back to waiting for a new Vlad Taltos book. I'm debating whether or not to read the other Dragaera books while I'm on a roll, or whether to switch to something else. I guess we'll see when I finish Hawk.

I've been trying out posting by email from work. It seems to work okay. Which is nice because it means I don't have to drag posts home on a thumb drive. I'm sure DW is blocked at work, but even it it weren't, I wouldn't want to log in because of the monitoring. Logging into webmail feels easier to explain away. I have been accessing a few things more on my phone at work lately (hey, it's been sloooow), since there's public wifi in the building.

Still tired.

I've been trying to figure out how to find a decent painter for the house. I don't actually want to spend too much on the painting, so there's enough left to do the bathroom -- amazing how fast the money goes when you're making hefty payments on credit cards. So far, I haven't paid any of them off, though; just brought the payments down to within reach. I should pay them off, and I know that, but if I do, then I won't have the cash left for the house, which was really the point of the exercise. In any case, Angie's List is now free, so perhaps I will join and check there. I just need some names, and if all they will give me is The Big Two Names In The Area, then I will try the Old Boys' Network. I could probably get some names from my ex-father-in-law, but as much as I like him, I do feel awkward trying to talk to him. Less awkward talking to his wife, oddly enough, but for this, I'd have to talk to him.

The sky was gorgeous during walkies this morning. We have reached the point of the year where for the next couple of months, walkies will always be in daylight. This morning, the sun was not quite up when we got home, and the clouds to the east were painted all different shades of mauve and peach. I took my camera out back to try to get photos of the neighbor's dogwood tree against the light, but it was really too late for the best color. I can probably pull some color out of the photos in Photoshop, but....

The lawn is getting to the point of having to mow it and pretty wildflowers be damned. I will weep for them...and then zoom right over them because what else am I going to do? If I don't, one of the neighbors will probably helpfully do it for me. It's a toss-up between the Gossip and K next door who is so terrified of snakes that she mows that strip between my house and her fence so that snakes don't come into her yard from there -- as if they spontaneously generate in my foundation or something.

Yeah...still tired.

Day of Moan

May. 1st, 2017 09:37 pm
malinaldarose: (Default) bats so far. Not that I'd really expect to see them this early in the season, anyway, it's just...well, it's just. I think maybe the next thing I have tackled will be the bathroom, even if it's just to have someone come in and put up the ceiling. I have the names of three different contractors: the guy who fixed the kitchen light (and who I thought was a little expensive, and does it really take three hours to change out a light?), and two others. Well, four others if you count the guy who installed the new furnace (he's not just a furnace guy) and the guy who he subcontracted to -- though my neighbor warned me against hiring that last guy.

Yesterday, I met an old friend -- oh, let's be honest, old boyfriend -- for breakfast. We met at 9:30 and finally left the restaurant at 12:30, and we could probably have talked for another couple of hours, too. We haven't seen one another in a few months, and the last time we did wasn't really conducive to chatting, so the last time we had a chance for a good talk was probably a year or more ago. So that was nice. We've known each other for thirty-some-odd years at this point, so a lot of our conversation was about finding ourselves middle-aged (which isn't so nice).

After that, I came home, and decided that since it was sunny, I'd try to get some laundry done, even though storms were in the forecast. I did get the laundry on the line for an hour or so before I had to bring it in; I left it in the breezeway to finish drying. I also started to clean the breezeway out yesterday afternoon; I got the couch turned around and that corner of the room cleared. There's only one outlet, and there doesn't appear to be power to it -- whether it's disconnected, like the wall furnace, or whether it's just turned off, I do not know. I don't really need power out there; I won't be using it after dark. There's still a lot of work to be done, though.

I was sweeping some of the accumulated dirt and dead leaves out the back door when my mother walked in the front door. "What are you doing?" she asked. "What does it look like I'm doing?" I said, broom in hand.

As usual, my folks weren't actually here to see me. Usually when they wander in on a Sunday, it's because Mom has a list of things she's bought for Grama and she wants to be reimbursed, so she wants a check. This time, it was because she wanted to grill me about my sister, who is apparently having trouble at work -- trouble which I had only learned about yesterday morning when Bird caught me on FB and asked if I had any ideas about what she should do.

(It seems that because she isn't constantly Miss Susie Sunshine, she's been passed over for a summer job that she has done for the last three or four years and her unit supervisor actually told her that she would be reluctant to recommend Bird for a permanent position -- which isn't going to be a problem, anyway, if Bird can't ever place high enough on the clerical exam. In any case, this particular supervisor is only going to be with us for another nine months (thank goodness!) and Bird's temporary permanent position (it's a permanent position in that it gets her benefits and union membership, but it's a position with a time limit of two years and some months) runs for another four or five months after that, so it won't be up to Madame High and Mighty. I told her to try to get moved to one of the units upstairs; I'm not certain that those clerks are under Mme H&M's control.)

Today...was Monday. I had a low-level headache by lunchtime, and I stayed in the office for lunch so I didn't have to put up with the Gecko. I was going to stay after work, too, but ended up hurrying home so that I could get Jack walked because we were under not only a severe storm warning, but a tornado watch -- all of WNY was under a tornado watch, and Mom called Bird to let her know that there were tornadoes on the ground in PA. (Bird lives over the border in PA.) Of course, those tornadoes were two and three hours away, but they were on the ground! Mom gets a little...over-anxious about these things.

So I got home, rushed right past the Gecko to get socks and change into my sneakers and take off my jewelry and grab my raincoat and get back out to get Jack around the block...and we got as far as the parking lot at the end of the block where we cut over to the next street and it started to rain. And by "rain," I mean "the heavens opened and all the waters of the world fell down upon us, yea, and also did blow the winds, so that there were white-caps on the puddles." Jack and I were both drenched pretty much immediately, and to get home, we had to turn back into it because it was coming from the west(ish) and we were walking east. It blew my hood off right away, and Jack was simultaneously trying to huddle on the ground and shelter behind me. We passed a bush he usually pees on, and he headed straight for it; I thought he was going to pee again, but instead he tried to crawl under it. He was quite put out with me for insisting that we go home, but he was probably even more relieved than I was when we got there. He looked like a drowned rat and there was so much water in my sneakers that they sloshed. I'll be wearing something else for morning walkies. My pants were so wet that I had to wring them out in the tub and hang them in the bathroom to dry. My socks...well, I just tossed them into the tub. We were a seriously bedraggled pair.

I've been caught out in the rain before, but never such a deluge with such high winds. It was...unpleasant, and Jack's obvious anxiety wasn't helping.

But at least the smell of wet dog overpowered the smell of unwashed Gecko, so....
malinaldarose: (Default)
I am still not receiving comment notifications. It's very odd. A few old ones did trickle in this morning. Usually these sorts of things don't affect me...or they never used to, anyway.

Which reminds me: my LJ will be fifteen years old this year. Fifteen. And, lo, I boggle.

It has been a pretty day. The sun has shone most of the day, and it's been in the upper 50s. I think tomorrow is supposed to be warmer, but rainy. Not that it matters, since I'll be stuck in a fabric-covered box all day.

It has also been a particulary weird day. I woke up this morning from another dream about guest-starring HTWIWM. Yesterday morning, he was leaving me in possession of yet another semi-ruined house. This morning, he and his Twinke were moving in with me. And I was okay with it. Even being friendly to Her Twinkness.

But then I woke up. Look at the clock and it was only 5:20. Cried a little. Went back to sleep and dreamed something better, and when I got up at nearly 7:00 a.m., felt much better about the world, though still lonely and a bit depressed.

While I was eating my breakfast, I logged onto FB and picked up a conversation with a friend via Messenger, and literally spent all morning talking to him. Well. Exchanging messages, but we had a pretty wide-ranging conversation. And in between messages, I read an entire novel-length Avengers fic. And then I read the 17K-world follow-up, and then I read the 7K-word follow-up to that. And then AO3 went down, so I walked the dog again.

And then I finished The Light Fantastic, which felt much more Discworldly to me than The Color of Magic. Next up: Equal Rites.

And now it's well after 6:00 p.m., and I've spent the entire day doing basically nothing. But I actually don't mind....

Jack and I nearly met yet another neighborhood dog this afternoon. Since I didn't jump on my treadmill this morning, I decided we'd better go for extra-long walkies this afternoon. We were getting near the far corner, where we haven't walked in ages, when I noticed that there was a loose dog cavorting with some kids a few houses up the street. Since you can't trust people who let their dogs out loose to corral them when someone comes walking by, I turned us around and headed home. I was annoyed.

And then the woman who used to have the fluffy white dog called admiring words about Jack, adding that he reminded her of a dog she had had. I restrained myself from snarling that I remembered her white fluffy dog very well, thank you, from the few times when he'd attacked me because he was also loose -- and territorial.

Well. Attacked might not be quite accurate. He menaced me -- rushed out into the road and snarled and wouldn't let me pass even though I was on the other side of the street. It was Bailey that he actually attacked, and fortunately, HTWIWM was with me at the time, and he managed to separate the dogs...just. And the stupid cow came running to get her white angel...but still wasn't careful about making sure he was secured when he was outside. (Their yard isn't fenced, and they tied him out in the front instead of the back.)

This week is my turn to work 9-5, so I am making a dinner that should last me through a big chunk of the week, but I also am thawing the liquid I drained off the hamburger when I made hamburger-and-rice for Jack when he was sick some months back, so I can make soup out of it. I'll toss either noodles or rice into it one night this week, and it'll be fine. Well. Maybe some bouillon. Or maybe not.

I'm starting to ramble, so it's time to go....
malinaldarose: (Default)
I completely forgot to annoy my coworkers by blasting Celtic tunes all day yesterday. And, lo, I am ashamed. I could've managed it nicely, too, because my neighbor with the loud radio didn't come in until nearly noon, so it was quiet in my corner. Which is probably why it didn't occur to me. One values the peace....

I am going to have to see if I can find the manual for my thermostat online. The small manual I have for it doesn't get into how to program it, only how to install it. And it's completely messed up now. I can't even tell what's going on with it. Maybe it's back to factory defaults or something, but it seems to be set for 62° at night, which is fine, but 70° during the day, which is nice, but far warmer than I want to go until I figure out what my gas bill is going to look like. HTWIWM would never let me keep it above 64° during the day and 55° at night -- and he kept it at 55° during the day, too, when I wasn't home. I started bumping it up to 66° when I was home and 60° overnight. It seems obvious, though, that both his programming and Friend P's attempt to get rid of that programming are both gone. Now I need to be able to put in my own. I'll search for it later.

At the moment, though, I'm waiting for the car to warm up (i. e., the frost to melt because I don't want to scrape it) so I can go hunt the grocery beast.

Jack met himself a German shepherd pup on walkies yesterday afternoon. We were turning the corner and this dog just came charging at us from nowhere. He was about seven months old, and had a collar and tags, and I had a vague idea that he lived in the college house (I think it's still student housing, anyway; both of the people that eventually came out looking for him were wearing college sweats). He was friendly; he just wanted to play (playplayplay). I was a little worried about how Jack would react on the leash, but he was okay. At one point, I had the pup's collar and was trying to lead him home, but couldn't control Jack on the leash while clinging to the pup's collar, so I let the pup go and tried to get him to follow me and Jack to where I supposed his house to be. Fortunately, his people did come out looking for him, but dammit, if they're going to keep a dog in that house, they can't just let him out the door and ignore him. They're only one lot from a main road, ferchrissakes. I Do Not Approve. I presume that they were eventually able to catch him; he didn't want to be caught and was tearing around. I took Jack away, hoping that that would help, and he didn't follow us.

So I guess I'm going to have to keep an eye out for Frankie from now on, and maybe start carrying an extra leash in my pocket. And then maybe this'll never happen again....
malinaldarose: (Default)
It's the January Thaw. My sister snorted at me yesterday when I mentioned it, but it's a Real Thing. I first became aware of the January Thaw a little over twenty years ago when I was wandering the fields behind my office building on a Saturday in January taking photographs. There was at least one dandelion in the field and it was in the low 60s. Since then, I've paid attention, and most years, we do have a spectacular thaw in January. Right now, it's 51° and pouring. If it were twenty degrees cooler, we'd be having a terrible blizzard. This is, according to the weather wiseacres, the warmest and last day. Tomorrow, it's supposed to be 27°. After the Thaw, temperatures usually slide right down into the awfulness that is February.

You know that part of The Dark Is Rising where the Old Ones steal the Ice Candles from the Dark and break the cold? And it starts raining? That's what this morning is like.

And Jack, of course, had to have his walkies. I actually wore my rain coat with only a sweater under it, so only my legs got wet, but Jack got drenched...and now smells of wet dog. I turned us around as soon as he completed his business, so walkies got cut short again today, even though it's so warm.

In other news...there really is no other news. Which won't stop me from blathering on at length about nothing because that's what I do.

I have to check and see if my W2 is available yet¹; if it is, I may do my taxes this weekend. I have been considering what to do with my refund. Normally, I would stash it away to either use for traveling expenses or to pay my school taxes later in the year. This year, though, since we're not traveling, I was thinking about paying off some credit card or other, but then it occurred to me that I could get something done on the house...and I think I might look into seeing about getting the bats out of my attic. Even without sticking my head through that hatch, I think we can be pretty well certain that there are bats nesting up there, because I have had at least one [thoroughly sluggish] bat appear in the winter when any normal, self-respecting bat is hibernating. And I have had at least one bat in the house every year since moving in (and multiple ones some years). I wonder if the health department has a list of people who remove bats. I don't mind bats outside. I wholly applaud their efforts on the mosquito front alone. But I don't want them in my house.

Nobody's going to be surprised if I say that I spent all of last evening binge-watching Emergency!, right? Read more... )

At this rate, I'll be through the series by the middle of next month. I wonder what I'll do with my time, then....
¹ The county went paperless with all of our payroll information (as long as we don't get an Actual Check) last year, and W2s were actually available, and I had my refund in my chilly little hands before they would've even bothered to send them out previously. They always figured that if we had to have them by 31 January, then we'd damn well get them on 31 January.
malinaldarose: (Default)
Here's the thing about walkies: I don't actually like walking the dog. I committed to twice-daily walkies as a way of getting out myself and as a way of keeping Jack's hips and legs in working order since he was already considered "geriatric" (or nearly so) when I adopted him. (He was seven; he is now nine.) I take him out every morning and every evening. Sometimes, we end up cutting walkies short because it's slippery or far too cold for such nonsense, but I've never not made the attempt.

This morning, though.... I expected a little ice because we had freezing rain yesterday afternoon and I know it rained again later. I looked out the window and could see the ice. It was pretty and shiny and bright in the moonlight. And I thought to myself, "Self, you really don't want to go out there." And myself said, "Nope. Really don't. Gotta walk the dog, though." So we got harnessed up and stepped out the door...and on my second step, I nearly slid into the basement window well, and that was the end of walkies. While Jack was tromping around the backyard, I scattered salt on the walk and around the van (so I hopefully will not slide under the van when I get ready to go to work).

I am really wishing this morning that my office ever closed, but Social Services waits for no man. Or woman. Or ice storm. At least one local school system is closed -- and not one of the ones that usually closes, either. I wonder if the superintendent is jumping up and down in his pajamas yelling, "Frist!!1!" I could, of course, take a personal day, but I've only got the one, and I always feel a bit ridiculous taking time off due to the weather when I live so close to the building.

Besides, it's supposed to be warm enough today that by lunchtime everything will be fine.

I'm feeling particularly tired this morning. I'm not sure why.

Just checked the closings again, in a vain hope that I wouldn't have to go to work. More of the local schools are now listed, but no businesses. How come adults don't get a reprieve? It's not fair.

I don't like being an adult. Waaaaaaaaa.
malinaldarose: (Default)
As of this morning, Jack is back to normal. I was beginning to be seriously concerned, because one hears horror stories of dogs that don't poo only to find out that their intestines are twisted or that they have horrific blockages, and all of those stories end with the death of the dog. But Jack is okay. Whew. He's a complete pain in the ass, but I do adore his furry little self.

It is still quite cold; the weather seers said it was 9° this morning before dawn when we went walkies. I didn't catch the wind chill, but there was wind, and it was chilled. Enough so that I cut walkies short this morning. Not as absolutely short as I sometimes do; I just did the small loop that we do in the afternoon (cutting through a parking lot) instead of the larger loop we normally do in the mornings (all the way down to the main road and across parallel to the parking lot, then back home -- it's not a huge difference, but it does cut five or six minutes off the walk).

Today, I should probably do a few more things than I did yesterday. I didn't do any laundry for one thing. On the other hand...I could get by without doing the laundry, so maybe I won't bother until next weekend. I spent nearly the whole day yesterday binge-watching Emergency! some more. Yeah, I know. I'm kinda obsessed with it, and I'm not really sure why; nattering on )

Weird what sticks with you.

In other news, it is currently snowing, but it was snowing when Jack and I went walkies an hour and a half or so ago. In fact, we were out before the plow this morning. Jack was so pleased that I finally allowed him to check out the yard where the new beagle gets his/her outings, but it was only because I saw the plow turning the corner and I really didn't feel like getting run over by it. So we stopped under the light pole which is oddly situated halfway up the yard and waited for the plow to pass. But that meant that Jack got to take in All The Smells. So he was happy.

My brother got back to me on the diet Coke issue: he never touches my fridge, so he'll ask the Gecko about it. I've never set her father on her before, so I'm a little curious to see how this plays out. I'm certain she'll deny it, but unless Jack has developed the ability to a) open the fridge, b) pick out just the diet Coke, c) open cans, and d) destroy or hide the evidence, then it has to be her, as she is the only other person in the house. I'm especially interested in light of him admitting to me the other day that she'd be useless to keep an eye on Jack while he was sick (for which reason I took the day off so I could watch him myself).
malinaldarose: (Default)
  • I saw a skunk the other morning that rather than having a white stripe down its back had only a white cap on its head and a white tip on its tail. I've never seen one like that before. It was also in a hurry to get places and do skunk things. I had no idea they could move that quickly. Also? I'd really like to know what's up with Jack and skunks. They're the only critter that he really tries to get to after I've told him no. He doesn't get that excited even over rabbits, and I've seen him chase a rabbit down in the backyard.

  • I saw a killdeer up close the other day -- close enough that it tried the broken wing trick on me. I haven't seen a killdeer that close since we moved back into town from the farm where there was a nest quite near the house and I got some great pictures one morning...of me tormenting the poor killdeer by following it around with a camera. I'm a bad person.

  • I am trying to write this morning, and it is like pulling teeth.

  • The sun is trying to come out, but it's apparently going to rain some more.

  • I swapped my summer and winter clothes yesterday and made a huge pile of winter clothes that are going into the garage sale when I have one at the end of next month. While there are some things that I am going to hold onto in case of weight loss, there are some things that I am just not. One thing I'm keeping: the taffeta and velvet skirt that I bought at a garage sale a few years back and haven't ever worn. I was going to get rid of it, but I just like it too much, so I hung it carefully back in the closet.

  • I got an advertisement yesterday for a loan through AFSCME (the umbrella organization which includes the union to which I belong). I am unreasonably tempted by this, but I know it's a Bad Idea. Still, the idea of paying off a bunch of stuff and having to make only one payment a month? Sounds so good. But I know myself -- as soon as I wanted a book or a set of Doctor Who DVDs -- or a trip to Europe, because after having been afraid of travel all my life, I am suddenly becoming addicted -- I'd be using Ye Olde Creditte Carde again. Because I'm stupid.

  • I am looking forward to a long weekend next weekend, and debating taking Friday off as well. Can't take Tuesday off unless I can find someone to work my 9-5 for me. (I often take Tuesdays because Co-Conspirator P favors Fridays and they don't like having both of us off at once. It's not forbidden, they just don't like it.)

  • I found out today that the new Star Trek film is being released on MyAuntie's birthday. I'm going to have to sneak out to their local multiplex while I'm there and get her a gift card; my trip is only a couple of weeks before her birthday.

  • I am considering selling the stash of drywall in my breezeway. I desperately want that space back, and drywall isn't really all that expensive. I'm never going to reclaim my house if I keep holding onto HTWIWM's stashes.

  • It's really actually sunny out at the moment -- sunny enough for there to be squares of light on the floor at any rate. The weather wiseacres are still calling for more rain today, though. I suppose this is just an extended sucker hole.

  • Right. Enough waxing of the cat. Time to get back to tooth pulling.
malinaldarose: (Default)
When people talk about lazy government workers, I think they're referring to my next cube neighbor. She is constantly shirking work, always going to her supervisor to ask if someone else shouldn't be doing the work on any given case. Yesterday, I heard her twice refuse to go up front to see walk-in clients. I also heard her put someone on hold so that she could answer her personal phone. Every time I go past her cube, she's online. It's frustrating and annoying...and ultimately unimportant, of course.

Jack and I walked to the railyard this morning. I saw a deer watching us (I said good morning), and of the two rabbits, Jack only spotted one. I think he's figured out that I'm not going to let him chase them because he only made a half-hearted effort. The wild strawberries are blossoming, but the crabapple trees along the trail are losing theirs. The sky was lovely this morning -- we got out right around sunrise, but once the sun was up, it disappeared into clouds. It's still pretty grey out there, but according to the forecast, it's not supposed to rain today...which probably means that I'll need to mow tonight.

There is one thing to be said for snow: if the car will go over it, then you can get away without shoveling the driveway. Unfortunately, you can't get away with not mowing your lawn. Not for very long, anyway. I probably won't need to mow it more than once in the entire month of August, but right now it's spring, and the grass is...enthusiastic.

I think my neighbors are having a garage sale this weekend, so I will perhaps mow the front yard this evening and get it done since people will be parking in my yard on Saturday. (There aren't any curbs in my neighborhood, so people will be parking at least half a car's width in my grass.)

Birthday Day has become something of a controversy in the office. My unit stopped participating because the supervisor of one of the other units had a hemmorhage because people were standing outside her cube munching and talking. She actually got up and moved all the food from the place where we had always put it to the tops of some filing cabinets two quads away from her cube. That was when my unit voted to quit. The month after the vote, Mrs. Loud-Vulgar in that unit caught someone in my unit taking a cookie from the food which was left out for the entire office to share and started bitching -- loudly -- that that food was only for her unit and how dare other units touch any of their stuff, and so and and so forth. And she didn't stint on the expletives. (There's a reason I call her Mrs. Loud-Vulgar.) Anyway, today, they brought in food. Co-Conspirator P called me midmorning and asked if I was going to have a cookie, and when I said that it was the other unit's stuff, she told me that she had brought in stuff for our unit. So I had a triple chocolate cookie. Yum.

For some peculiar reason, there is suddenly a fad for those solar-powered dancing critters in the office -- hula girls, dancing flowers, bobbling animals (though not actual bobble-heads). There are a couple of window ledges and overhead cabinets lined with the things. I really can't stand them, and I can't even say why. Maybe it's the kitsch factor.

There is also, I should point out, a single dancing Baby Groot, but it's not solar-powered, and it's not often switched on because it's pretty loud.

No, it's not mine. Nor, surprisingly, is it Comic Book Guy's. It's someone else entirely. She also has a Sparkly Vampire Edward doll and a Wash action figure with tiny little toy dinosaurs. If I were cruel, I'd poke a pencil through the Wash figure. If I wanted to play such a mean joke, I'd have to buy a Wash figure, though, as I'd never do it to hers.

Snow Day

Jan. 13th, 2016 09:14 am
malinaldarose: (Default)
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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Grama finally got sprung from the hospital yesterday. It had occurred to me yesterday morning that perhaps the reason they continued to fail to discharge her was that they had decreed that she was to have a week of therapy, and by Dog, she was going to get a week! I did get the financial aid paperwork yesterday; the application form is much shorter than I expected. I'm going to have to see if Mom got in touch with the doctor about changing her admission code so that Medicare would pick up the rehab bill.

It's chilly again this morning, but in the teens, instead of single digits. When Jack and I went for a walk, the moon had only just recently -- like fifteen minutes prior -- risen. A big, yellowy crescent hanging in the sky, with the Morning Star (whatever it is right now) a little above it. The sky wasn't as clear as it was yesterday, so everything was visible, but fuzzy. It's supposed to get into the 40s later. I can live with that. Anything that puts off the Deep Winter temperatures is okay in my book.

Merlin is on antibiotics again, and I am having one hell of a time getting them down him. He won't take them in Pill Pockets. He won't take them mixed into food. And my skill at tossing them down his throat seems to have totally evaporated. Yesterday's attempt was exceedingly trying. He's had a week's worth, and I could probably get away with only giving him three more days instead of another week (ten days as opposed to two weeks), but I'd really like to get the whole dose down him. (When they first started giving me these antibiotics for his chronic respiratory infection, they were ten-day courses; it was only when I switched vets at one point that the course was increased to two weeks.)

I also couldn't get his thyroid medication down him this morning, but he did yark up his breakfast, so.... I'll try again at lunchtime, when I'll wrap his pills into Pill Pockets and hide them in gushy fudz.

I've been thinking about The Grey House again of late, and rewriting it in a Regency or faux-Regency setting. (I've also been thinking of giving it to MyAuntie for her merciless criticism.) Certain aspects of it would work better than way, especially as I began writing it before everyone carried miniature computers in their pockets. I dunno. I haven't touched the thing in years, but I could finish it and give it to Niece as a birthday or Christmas gift. (Publication seems extremely unlikely.) She likes fantasy, and she loved the AuthorQuest Dark Crystal chapters. Or said she did, anyway.... Maybe I'll rewrite the first chapter that way and see how it goes.

There's nothing really to say about work -- which is the best thing when it comes to work, because if I have Things To Say, it means Things Aren't Going Well.

And Merlin has decided that it's time that I got out of his chair....
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There was a dusting of snow overnight (apparently enough to get the plows out, though), and it's only in the mid-teens right now and not expected to get more than a degree or two warmer today. But tomorrow, it's supposed to be 30° and sunny. Go figure. I had to dig out my Big Heavy Coat for walkies this morning. I like my Big Heavy Coat. It's purple (eggplanty purple, not lavender) and goes down past my knees. It's Plenty Warm Enough for this weather.

Jack decided he wanted short walkies this morning; as we passed the turn for short walkies (i. e., just around the block), he headed that way without any direction from me. Fine. Short walkies it is. Still felt terribly long, though, especially when we waited for the plow to traverse the entire block -- seemed easiest to just get off the side of the road and wait since we were near a light just then.

It was a great morning for critters. We didn't actually see any until we got back (when I had to chase two rabbits out of the backyard before I could let Jack out there), but there were tracks galore. Deer, rabbits, cats, early morning commuters....

I expect today to be frustrating. It's Back To Work, for one thing, which means the Gecko will be back. I spent some time yesterday evening covering all the furniture again, and later I'll have to move her Permissible Food Box back to the counter. (I hope her bread hasn't molded; I forgot to check.) I expect that I will have at least two new apps waiting for me...well, I know that I'll have at least one because it was sitting on my clerk's desk on Christmas Eve waiting to be checked in and registered in the system, but she wasn't there to do it. Huh. I'd managed to forget about that during my vacation, because I was annoyed about it when I saw it. It's from a facilitated enroller (i. e., someone who went to the client's house and helped them complete the app), and it was submitted two weeks after the enroller got it signed (app date is the signature date on these, rather than the date we receive it). It has now been sitting an additional fortnight, which means that for me to stay within my 45-day time limit for processing, I now have only fifteen days left to process it. *sigh*

Kethri is going to the V-E-T tonight (so I hope it doesn't snow more during the day as the V-E-T's office is on a country road). I have been concerned for some time about how skinny she has become. When Nimue got skinny like that, it turned out that her abdomen was riddled with tumors. I am hoping that Kethri just needs to have her thyroid meds adjusted. The thyroid test is not cheap, though; I believe they send the sample out to Cornell for testing. And they'll want me to get the geriatric blood panel, too, and that runs around $250.00. I think we'll postpone that one, though, unless the thyroid test doesn't turn up anything. Especially as I got my property tax bill, finally, and it's going to be difficult to scrape up that much money by the end of the month.
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How on earth did it get to be almost 11:00 a.m. already when I got up at 5:00?

And why did I get up at 5:00 a.m. on a Sunday? Because after many weeks of behaving himself, Jack tried to get in bed with me again. Given the way he was panting, and his expression, I'm beginning to rethink the possibility that there might be some sort of seizure activity going on there, though he was fine when I gave up twenty minutes later and got out of bed (after he tried a second time).

Or maybe he's just weird.

I checked out the rescue's website this morning. Dean has now been in a foster home for a few weeks, and turns out to be a very submissive fellow. I guess he probably wouldn't be a good match for Jack, then. (They'd pee all over each other trying to out-submit one another.) I'm going to call the dog guy this week, if I can remember, and see if maybe instead of trying to crate train Jack (or otherwise traumatize him), he could perhaps advise me on finding a companion for Jack.

I also, speaking of phone calls, have to call the administrator at the facility where my grandmother lives. She left a message for me on Friday -- "No emergency, but I have to talk to you regarding your grandmother." Oh, great. This makes me all kinds of anxious. If it were a medical issue, though, I'd think they'd call my mother rather than me. (Mom's her health care proxy.) They've already sent me a letter regarding their fee increase as of 1/1/16, so.... I'll be making that call as soon after 9:00 a.m. tomorrow as I remember it. Maybe I should write the number on the same slip of paper as the dog guy's.

We had a short walk this morning. It was even more slickerer this morning than yesterday. Yesterday, in fact, I was not afraid of falling, so I was striding normally, which is probably part of the reason I fell. This morning, I was walking too slowly and gingerly for either of us to be happy with the walk, so I turned us around and brought us home. Plus, Jack kept pulling after the scents of various small furry woodland creatures. (And not so small ones, too.)

After yesterday's snow, it's supposed to be in the 40s and sunny today. It's already sunny and above freezing. The weather is supposed to warm up again all week -- I probably should take this opportunity to go to my aunt and uncles, because who knows when -- or if -- they'll ever come home again. Well. I know for certain of three more times, but those aren't times to be wished for.

I talked to Auntie on the phone yesterday for our customary two and a half hours. I have to wonder if I called her every evening like my grandmother does if we'd still talk for that long. She has nothing but venom for my sister, which puts me in an awkward position, but there's nothing new there. She is pretty certain that Bird and Number Five will never actually get married. She believes that Bird will back living in Gram's house by the end of the summer. Apparently, everyone would be happy if I bought the house, but I have all kinds of reasons not to, including that just the very idea of trying to clean the remainder of HTWIWM's crap out of this house makes me very tired. And angry. And depressed.


BFT and I are going to catch the late matinee of Star Wars this afternoon. At first, we were going to do movie, then dinner, but I decided that I didn't want to have to deal with the Ravenous Gecko that late on a Sunday evening (I'd've probably had to drive her home), so we're having a late lunch and then a movie. We'll exchange gifts at lunch. I wrapped hers this morning...including her movie ticket. What the heck, right?

Right. Time to get my butt out of this chair and go wrap MyAuntie and Nuncle's presents so I can ship them out tomorrow.

Oh, one last entertaining tidbit: I found out on Friday that I am the only person in my unit working on Christmas Eve, other than the unit supervisor, anyway. Everyone else requested, and was granted, vacation days. I think they all owe me flowers.
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There was another walker out during our walk this morning, so Jack was quite distracted. I had to remind him to pay attention to me. At first, I thought she was one of the other dog walkers I see occasionally in the neighborhood, especially as I overslept this morning, so our walk was later than usual, but it turned out that she was just passing through. I'm not certain from where; if she was coming from Wal-Mart, as I first thought, then she was definitely going the long way around, since she turned back toward Wal-Mart at the end of the neighborhood.

The weather has turned, or is turning. Yesterday's high temperature -- nearly 70° -- broke records, but then it rained and the wind came up. Today, it's not supposed to get any warmer than it already is (about 45°) and it's quite windy. But it's supposed to warm up again next week. I don't think we're going to have a white Christmas. (Yay!)

The work Christmas party is the day after tomorrow. My unit is ordering from my favorite restaurant, so I have to check the buck locker and see if I have enough money to order lunch on the day before pay day. We're also doing a white elephant exchange with a limit of $10, so I either have to scour the cupboards for something decent or find something tonight when I pick up my prescription. I'm torn between getting something nice and just getting grabbing one of those crappy holiday gifts that are in the center of all the aisles of the 'marts at this time of year. Though I don't suppose anyone would really object to getting a Godiva package....

I'll be quite curious to see what the Ravenous Gecko does today. I put some more treats in her boxes yesterday, including the remains of those bags of candy she got into. I also gave her some Lunchable desserts, five pudding cups (from a package of eight; I kept the other three for myself), some more bread, a package of pepperoni of her very own. Yesterday, she devoured all the rest of the candy and three of the pudding cups. I'm curious to see if she'll get into the ones I set aside for myself as they're in the fridge, but not in her box. She ate one of the Lunchable desserts and did open the pepperoni. Bear in mind that she's only here for eight hours and she does bring her own food (because I've seen the wrappers).

Frankly, it's no wonder that she's overweight. There's no physical problem there; it's entirely due to too many sweets and no exercise whatsoever.

Which is my own problem, to be honest....
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It is quite warm and breezy out there. I wonder if this pretty warm for the last days of autumn weather is going to preclude a January thaw? Walkies this morning was far less of a burden than December walkies can be, though Jack saw or scented something a couple of times that he wanted to investigate. He didn't jerk at the leash (too much), but he was definitely interested in something. Bunnies, perhaps.

I am trying to decide whether or not to take this afternoon off to fix the fence. I don't actually think it will take very long; I'm not planning to take the old fence down, just run a new section of fencing along behind it. I am planning to hack at the grapevines, though. I haven't decided whether or not I'll try to kill them completely by sawing through the main trunks (and I would definitely need a saw), or whether I'll just cut through a bunch of the branches with loppers. I need to cut them back in any case to actually get to the fence. Besides, they're killing my lilacs.

Why take this afternoon off? So I don't have to do it tomorrow or Sunday. So I can be lazy on the weekend, because I like being lazy on the weekend.

In dog-related news, the Ravenous Gecko has been quite good about not getting into things since I left the note for her on Monday. So much so, in fact, that I'm planning on give her more cash than I had originally intended to. I think time will tell the tale on this one, though; I'm curious to see how long it takes her to revert to form. Maybe she won't. Maybe she just needed someone who wasn't yelling at her (like my sister and grandmother) to set firm rules for her. Yeah, maybe.

In other dog-related news, I have still not heard back from the dog guy. Why do people bother to put "Email me" links on their websites if they're not going to respond to the resulting email? I realize that they probably get a lot of spam that way, but if they're running a business, they should spend at least a little bit of time sorting through it. (Why haven't I called him? Because I keep forgetting to. I get busy at work doing my, you know, job, and forget about things I'm not supposed to be thinking about at the time, anyway.)

In non-dog-related news, Dad got the result of his biopsy yesterday. Some abnormalities, but no cancer. They're going to keep an eye on it, though. Whew.

My parents dropped in last night to pick up the last of their garage-sale stuff from the garage. They're having a sale this weekend since it's supposed to be in the low 60s. Another reason to take this afternoon off to fix the fence: my parents are having a sale, which means that it's going to rain.

I am still reading the Harry Dresden books, though I am taking a bit of a break to finish up the Mary Poppins series, which should be taking me less time than it is, but I generally only read during my breaks at work these days, and there's only so much one can read in fifteen minutes, even when one stretches it to twenty-five because one is a badass rule-breaker.

I got a new winter coat yesterday. I'm rather proud of myself for getting it half off, plus an additional $20 off in points, so it was about 70% off. It's from Lands End, one of those puffy, downy things. It's supposed to be packable (in case I ever get to Venice for Carnivale), and it's also supposed to be Really Warm. It's got the highest or second-highest cold rating (maybe that should be lowest?); it's supposed to keep you warm in nose-pinchy weather. I dunno. It's awfully thin; my spring jacket seems thicker and heavier. I'm thinking that maybe my definition of "warm" isn't the same as theirs, à la "inconceivable." We'll see, though. I'll be able to test it out during dike walkies in a couple of weeks....
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Let's just get this right out of the way: I don't want to go to work this morning. It's not even that there's anything particularly terrible looming; I just don't want to go. I was reminded this morning that two years ago I was on medical leave, and it was the second-happiest I'd been in probably ten years. I re-read the paralegal announcement this morning, and there's no way that they'd even let me take the test. They're requiring at least an associate's degree in paralegal studies and two years' experience in a law office. Which probably means that they have a candidate in the position already and they're tailoring the requirements to narrow the playing field and give that candidate an edge.

Nine years until I can retire. That's a long time....

It's chilly this morning; the skies are crystal clear; there's frost. Orion is setting. The moon is still casting plenty of light. When we got back from our short walk, there was not only a cat on the patio near the ramp, but a pair of deer out in the center of the yard -- on the one morning where I forgot to check before letting Jack out. Oh, he barrelled down that ramp.... All three critters fled immediately; the cat ended up being the one chased because the deer were closer to the fence. I bet it was the same cat that was sunning itself on the shed roof yesterday afternoon, too.

Our walk was short because I need to wash my hair. The washing doesn't take long, but the drying does, and I don't like going to work with wet hair. I also need to get the house ready for the Gecko, which means taking all the throw pillows and blankies off the furniture and covering everything with towels. It occurred to me this morning that I actually have to worry now about fleas and lice. It would not surprise me one bit if she didn't bring bugs with her as well as odor. Somehow I've got to scrape together the money to pay the dog guy's fee. Which wouldn't be such a problem if I didn't also have to pay property taxes at the end of next month (where we're ignoring that it's still November because tomorrow is December and the tax bill will be here by New Year's Eve). I suppose I could always pay the taxes out of my income tax return; they'd be late, but....

I know that I have said that I was tempted to call HTWIWM to come and whisper at Jack, but that's just talk. I would never call him. Ever. Besides, I doubt very much that he would even respond to any effort on my part to get in touch with him. He certainly didn't respond when I told him about Garion dying, which is why I never bothered to let him know about any of the others.

Yeah, I'm kinda feeling sorry for myself this morning. Time to stop that and go wash my hair...

Day of Sun

Sep. 6th, 2015 09:08 am
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On a whim, I posted a haiku status update on Facebook about Jack's and my walk this morning. MyNuncle responded in kind. Now we seem to be having a pissing contest haiku war -- all about dog walks. It's entertaining, at least.

What was not entertaining was the bat that sailed into the living room last evening from upstairs just as the episode of Doctor Who I was watching was reaching its climax. I closed my office door, opened the front door, and started tossing crumpled up pieces of paper out of it whenever the bat swooped near me, but it didn't seem to work. I was assured that that would work. (I will have to go retrieve those from the front porch later.) Finally, I got the huge piece of cardboard that I use to block the lower part of the screen door from doggy snouts and started waving it in the air in an attempt to shoo the bat out. I think it worked. I heard the bat tick against the cardboard (a wingtip), and then it was suddenly gone. I hope I do not find it while I am cleaning the living room later. Equally, I hope I do not find it in pieces later.

I was surprised that the Great Grey Hunter didn't just pull it out of the air as he has done with almost every other bat that has been in the house since we've lived here. (I say "almost" because the one that was in the house in January was already on the floor, and I got to it first.) I hope I will not see it again this evening, but I expect that I will.

I like bats. I hate bats in my house.

In other news, I am trying to decide whether to clean my extremely cluttered office (it has reached that point again), edit photos, or go back to a couple of writing projects. Perhaps I will do all three. Or maybe I'll just go pull this towel off my head since it's starting to list to port and giving me a headache. I'm not going to blow dry my hair today, so I guess it doesn't matter when the towel comes off....

Oh, I know! I will go back and watch the last few minutes of that Doctor Who episode!

Day Of Sun

Apr. 12th, 2015 09:36 am
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Yesterday, I was wondering when it was going to warm up again and stay warm. Today is apparently that day. It's supposed to be nearly 70° today, after being only in the thirties or forties yesterday, and it's supposed to stay warm all week. The grass is going to start growing. I need to get the lawnmower looked at....

Because it was cold yesterday, when I went out for groceries, I bought the ingredients for Sunday Soup (vegetable beef edition). Even though it's going to be warm today, I am still making the soup because I already thawed the beef. And if I have soup, I don't have to think about what I'm going to have for dinner for a couple of weeks. (I may have mentioned how much I dislike cooking?) Actually, if soup's going to be ready for dinner tonight, I need to get my butt (and probably the rest of me) out to the kitchen to get the stuff chopped up and dumped into the crockpot.

I took Jack for long walkies this morning. It's the first time we've been on the trail since it was snowed under after Christmas. He was very excited about the whole thing. It was also very bright, as I slept in a bit this morning (until 6:30!), so it was after sunrise when we went out. A good fog photo morning, but of course I didn't have my camera with me. Unlike MyNuncle, I do not go everywhere with a camera around my neck. (Sometimes I wonder why he isn't all bent over, but he usually keeps a shorter lens on his camera than I do on mine.)

I am still trying to figure out if I will have the vacation time to go visit MyAuntie and Nuncle this year. I had hoped to go before the Big Trip this summer, but I don't know if that's going to happen. I'll have to look at last month's paystubs to see how longevity days are accrued to see if I might manage it. (Yeah, even though I've been getting them for years, I don't know at what rate they accrue, especially as it was changed in the last contract or so.) (Longevity days: extra vacation days that you get for having worked there forfuckingever. I've got twenty-one years in, so I get the max, which is, I think seven.)

Right. Kitchen. Chop veggies. Right.
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Although it's now approaching mid-morning, I am relatively accomplished for a Sunday. Jack and I took an aborted walk (more on that in a paragraph or so), and I came home and had breakfast, then read some excellent Labyrinth fanfic (the posits, among other things, that Sarah's eating of the peach in the Labyrinth tied her to the Underground like Persephone's pomegranate, and another that crossed Labyrinth with The Avengers to good effect). And then I started cookies, which are nearly finished. That doesn't, however, mean that I am ambitious today, because it's Sunday, and I'm not. I have all sorts of vague ambitions for craft projects in my head, but none of them are likely to come to fruition. Though I do have to take a few more TeenyTinyTARDIS photos -- but I am nearly to the end of the stated aim of that project, which was to post 365 photos -- one a day, more or less. I got started 1 March 2014, and it's nearly the end of February....

As I posted on FB a little while ago, this morning's walk with Jack was a disaster. It was plenty warm enough, at 19° -- and with the vicious temperatures we have had lately, it felt downright balmy -- but we had snow yesterday and while the roads had been plowed, they were still snow-covered and sloppy. I elected to wear my boots, but they always bother my feet, and after half a block, I could feel the strain in both tendons. It did not help matters at all that Jack pulled like a crazy pulling thing. The deer had been all over the neighborhood again -- right up to the house, in fact -- and I could see much smaller tracks that looked like kitty prints, so I imagine the entire clan of black cats was roaming the neighborhood as well. Plus, the air smelled vaguely skunky, so that critter is probably also still about. We walked as far as up the block and around the corner, but Jack yanked one yank too many, and I turned us around and brought us home. Maybe later we'll try again. Maybe later I'll wear my sneakers and damn the snow in my socks.

I did dig out the Haltis (head collars -- not muzzles). They were right where I thought they would be. One was marked with a "D" for Deuce, and that is probably the one that will fit Jack. (Deuce was part border collie, part Aussie shepherd). The other may have been Garion's (mostly black lab), or it may have been Sheila's. I recall that we only tried the Halti once with Sheila, because she went down in the middle of the street and was trying to rub the thing off on the asphalt. One thing on a deserted country road, but kind of awkward in the middle of a residential neighborhood like this one. Anyway, both are grimier than I expected, so I will try to clean Deuce's with dish soap and hot water, though they're not particularly expensive, so it might be simpler to just order a new one.

One thing that annoyed me; I found them at Amazon; I searched there first for comparison, because I intended to order one from PetSmart or Drs. Foster & Smith. Neither of the latter places carry them. They carry alternate types, but not the Halti. So if I do order one, it'll be from Amazon.... I suppose I could stop by the tractor place near work or drive out to the pet shop east of town, but the latter place is a warren. It wouldn't hurt to try the tractor place, though, I suppose.

Last tray of cookies just came out of the oven. Tomorrow is the last day for one of my work friends before she goes off for medical leave, and we're putting together a basket of things for her to do during her recuperation -- she's a very active person, and she's having bunion surgery, which means six weeks off her feet. She kept complaining that My Partner came back to work in a cast and on crutches, and I had to disabuse her of the notion that she could do that. "Oh, no," I said, "that was because after she recovered from her surgery, she broke her foot." Though she did have bunions in both feet and after one or the other of her surgeries, she did come back a little early, but in a wheelchair. I remember helping her to rearrange her cubicle so that she could get the wheelchair in there. B is so tall, though, that I'm not certain that would work for her, unless they gave her a laptop to work on. (Because her long legs wouldn't fit under the desk if she was trying to keep her feet up. Given that she's in Data Entry, I don't think that would work out for anyone.) Anyway, my contribution to the basket is a puzzle book and chocolate chip cookies. It occurs to me that maybe I should lend her my cheap little Cobo tablet; I could download some games onto it for her. (I bought it on clearance three years ago, and it served its purpose, which was to give me somewhere to put Italy pics to show off to people.)

This coming week is supposed to be my 9-5 week, but since another worker is working 9-5 on certain days, I don't need to work 9-5 all week (though I'm not certain which days are which). I will probably go in at 8:00 every morning, anyway, just to try to get some work done. Tomorrow, though, I will leave at 4:00 so I can go see Grama, since I didn't stop to see her last week.

There is enough snow that I could haul the snowblower out and make a mess, but there's not quite enough that I couldn't just drive out of the driveway, so I will probably not bother. Today's high temperature is supposed to be quite near freezing, so I think some of the snow might melt. Or maybe sublimate. As long as some of it goes away, I don't care which way it does it. After today, though, it's supposed to get vicious again, with temps in the single digits and wind chills below 0°. Surely it's time for winter to end? Surely?

I have come up with a new idea for my SCA device: thirteen stars (well compass roses, because I don't like the heraldic etoiles) on a blue field. Heh. I may draw it later. I'll have to look, but someone probably already did something like that. I also need to renew my paid membership, because my term as seneschal continues for another year. Well, actually, for another ten months. I have been contacted by someone who is moving into town and wants to join the shire. She says that she is an A&S person, though, not a fighter. Maybe with some new blood, we can get some A&S stuff going. Or not....

I gained back, this week, the two pounds that I had lost the week before. I was not careful this week, though, and that is the result. I must be more careful this week, then. More fruits. More veggies (ugh -- why are fruits so easy and veggies so hard?). I did buy some asparagus, so I will have roast asparagus for two dinners. No more ham and cheese omelettes, though. Or, at least, no more than one a week, since they're apparently not as good for me as they are good.

Right. Time to clean up the kitchen and...I dunno, wash my hair or something. Oh, that's right. Wash a Halti.
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Today is the January Thaw. When I went out at 6:30 a.m. to walk Jack, it was already in the mid-40s. The temperature had risen overnight. It's supposed to be in the mid-50s today, but that weather is blowing right on through and we're actually supposed to have up to three inches of snow overnight. Of course, since I have to go back to work tomorrow and I loathe driving in snow.

With the warm temps this morning (relatively speaking, anyway), Jack and I went for a slightly longer walk than usual this morning, incorporating a jaunt around the academic buildings on campus into our usual route (normally we stick to the trail and turn around at the last entrance but one). I'm always a little nervous about walking a dog on campus (I used to walk Cruiser there in the winter, sometimes, because it was plowed, where the trail wasn't), because I'm afraid that Security is going to yell about it, especially when the dog decides to poo an extra time (fortunately, I had sufficient bags), but honestly, I've only seen Security once that early in the day, and it was years ago when I was walking Cruiser -- a much larger dog -- and all they said was "Good morning!"

Otherwise, it has been a quiet day. I am still binge-watching Highlander, and watched an episode early this morning while my hair was still wrapped in a towel. I never turn the TV on in the mornings, so it feels extremely decadent to do so, especially when it's early enough to still be sort of dark. I plan to go back to it later in the day...after I stick a meatloaf in the oven. It's been months since I made a meatloaf, and it's time I had something in the house for lunches (what with the going back to work tomorrow and all). So as soon as the hamburger finishes thawing....

Jack is currently sacked out next to me. He likes it in my office well enough, but doesn't seem to like the living room much. When I settle down on the couch of an evening, he has started to disappear upstairs into the bedroom. I don't know whether the TV bothers him, or if he just likes it upstairs on his soft bed. Sometimes, he disappears into the library. I'd be a little worried about him not liking to spend time with me, but the fact that he's not spending time with me -- that he's comfortable enough to not have me constantly in sight -- is a Good Thing.

Ah, it's getting bright in here. Ooo, there's actually a bit of sun. I suppose I should put some shoes on and take Jack out into the backyard for a bit....


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