Tag: the best-laid plans

I need a wind-up key


Because otherwise this morning is going to be all about half-asleep at my desk.

I don’t have time for that. This morning I’m off to Santa Barbara with a very expensive dog at my side. A trip to the vet makes you realize just how expensive an animal is. I’m pretty sure Harley’s antibiotics cost more than mine.

So, still dealing with that issue, now with added bonus: a yeast infection in both ears. Lovely. Our first ear infection together.

I’m struggling with motivation around here. It’s difficult to pull myself together enough to write, and the usual chores face the same angst. I should not have to angst over the vacuuming, you know? The kibble Harley has decided to reject are like tiny bombs waiting for my bare feet. Not quite up to the kids’ booby-trapped Lego-in-the-dark standard, but close.

There won’t be any distractions (other than the dogs) for the next couple of days, and hopefully that’ll increase my output. If nothing else, I’ll have hangouts on Google+ which will make me focus. Speaking of which, I love the hangouts aspect of Google+. Google may become our new overlords, but they’re doing it with style. Unlike certain other social media giants. (FB, I’m looking at you. U r doing it all wrong. That ‘you can tweak your account only if you can find where we hid it’ stuff? Yeah,
no. This is why I only use you to discover what my children are doing. As soon as I can convert them to Google+, you are out of my life.)

Now, off to discover some conviction at the bottom of a second cup of coffee. Wish me luck. Sometimes I don’t find it until I’ve emptied the pot.

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My monitor has a hint of pink this morning. Okay, more than a hint. This is not making my day any rosier.

Crafts killed: Thank god, thank god, I’m free at last. (Okay, until January. Shush.)

Packed: check
Tamales: check
Stockings: stuffed
Peppermint bark: check. (What do you mean most people don’t make this at midnight?? Note: Tempering chocolate is both easier and more time-consuming than I thought. On the other hand, I got to lick bowls that had contained expensive chocolate. Most expensive two pounds of peppermint bark in the world, I’m telling you.)

Off to school, and then to the airport. I should be very dead when I reach Denver. But hey! The Slug graduates tomorrow! (No more school, no more books, no more school loans’ dirty looks! YAY!) And she’ll be home for a while, at least.

I need good thoughts and prayers for finding her a job. Preferably one involving trees–lots and lots of trees.

I would like to point out that whoever arranged Christmas Bells are Ringing needs to be gonged. Maybe once I know it, I will change my mind. BUT I DOUBT IT. The iPod is coming along, as is the sheet music for all our Christmas pieces.

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And just in time to decorate the tree and give the upstairs a thorough scrubbing.


Or not, but hey, the worst part of decorating is done. The Eldest and the Slug’s boyfriend have the tree standing, *squints* more or less vertically. (I may be doing some readjusting. Perhaps. Or maybe I’ll hang most of the ornaments on the other side to weigh it down. It might work.)

Shaver Lake, where we spent Thanksgiving Day, was lovely. Proof:

My Youngest Sister, her husband, and the latest addition to the family. (So sad, he’s almost two. I’d say time for another baby from someone, but then it might devolve onto the Middle Child and Wife to reproduce, so no.)

My mom and Youngest Sister, in which the latter tries not to freeze completely solid. (A drawback to having no body fat to speak of.)

And now, no matter how I attempt to avoid it, it’s time to begin gift-buying. Another year of online purchases, mind you, because no way do I want to shop in the mall. I am truly grateful for web and online stores, and will willingly pay shipping costs, as long as I do not have to forge through customers and sales clerks alike. My one Black Thursday visit at Kohl’s last year was enough for a lifetime.

Writing? Who am I kidding? I got nothing done. Tonight. I will hop into the OWW chat and allow myself to be shamed. The desire is there–well, the desire to have written. It’s very much akin to my desire to have walked. I need to shift both of those desires into the present tense, because otherwise it doesn’t happen. I mean, I’m a walking (or a not-so walking) advertisement for how the past participle tense is not helpful. At all.

Finally, I’m am reading and thinking about the TSA and the latest infringement on our rights as citizens. Haven’t made up my mind yet as to whether I’ll suffer the scattershot of untested x-rays or be groped. Not flying to Colorado is not a choice, seeing that it’s the Slug’s graduation. I just have to hope I won’t be in the 3% that get waved to additional screening. I wasn’t when I went to Columbus, so maybe the luck will hold. But the more I read about the scanner technology, the more concerned I become–and that concern’s grown past the concern of what happens to those images, or even the images itself. Read this if you want a reason to be more nervous.

Seeing that my mom’s had several small bouts with skin cancer in the past few years, I’m wondering what my chances are to develop it if I submit to backscatter screenings. There’s a very big piece of me that believes large government-sponsored agencies do not have my welfare in mind–most of the time. Nor, for that matter, do they have the welfare of their very own employees in mind. Given that, it would not surprise me to discover they have rolled out thoroughly untested technology under the guise of our protection, and that we will only discover how bad it is for us several years down the road, once the statistics for certain cancers rise.

And on that lovely note, yeah. Off to see if the tree lights work. Maybe I’ll electrocute myself and I won’t have to worry about the other.

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It’s always a good day when I get to sleep past 7A


Another holiday in kindergarten bites the dust. You could tell it was Thanksgiving because of the wild Indians tearing across the field in the Turkey Trot and celebrating with pumpkin pie afterwards.

Three of my boys won the turkey trot, btw. Which just hints at how on my toes I have to be this year.

Alas, still no writing. However, the laptop is coming with me to Fresno, and there will be writing–in the car, at odd moments while we’re there. It’s difficult to write at Mom’s because she wants to visit. Understandable, of course, particularly when I only get there five or six times a year. But usually I can carve out a few minutes, and just long enough to frustrate myself because I can’t get back into the writing head as quickly as I’d like.

In other news, the tree will go up this weekend–while the children are actually here to get the thing down from the rafters and put it together. It’s the heaviest fake tree ever, as far as I can tell, and at some point, we will cave and get a different one. (My testing for that one will be can I pick up the box. My testing did not include that little piece of information on the last one.) Luckily the living room had its thorough cleaning, so it’s mostly move the furniture and get it up. If I have enough nagging at my disposal, I might even get the kids to put up the outside lights.

Too early, but they won’t be around the next couple of weekends, and we’ve got that trip to Colorado for Alix’s graduation the weekend before Christmas.

Everything’s on zoom.

I had the Slug make her first batch of pie dough last night. She wasn’t sure why she needed to learn this skill, but I’ve had too many parents terrified by the process of pie dough from scratch. Needless to say, it came out wonderfully, she can replicate it again, and we have two pumpkin pies. (Okay, one and a half. Pie magically appeared for breakfast, too. Shush. The Slug claims it’s a balanced breakfast if she’s got pie in each hand. I think she has a point.)

Finally, Zoey’s (the Alaskan Husky) hip issues are noticeable. She’s had some trouble getting up from a curled position, which I can circumvent by massaging her hip joints a bit, but this morning, she couldn’t make the leap over the retaining wall and onto the hillside. I’m worrying about this, of course. It’s time for the vet, and the Eldest Child is just going to have to take her in–sooner rather than later.

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Last day of vacation. *sniff*


So I didn’t make it through yesterday’s entire list, but I still have today to wrap it up. And then do more. I have two or three hours before the Spousling returns, and we’ll see how much I accomplish.

Writing did happen last night, but it was difficult and sparse. The rewrite’s in process, though, and that will mean it’ll be easier to pick up where I left off. I find starting horrendous. Opening the door to walk is the most difficult. Once my legs are moving, I’m fine. Same with writing. Opening the darn Mac is the hardest. Pulling out the memory stick? Not so much. Settling in to work at that point? Piece of cake.

So. Writing at some point this afternoon, even if I only give myself fifteen minutes. Which may be all I have.

Yes, there’s this little thing called a critique, and then I have a studio class tonight. (Where I’ll get to hear Elaine blow everyone else away, including me, and omg, I’m so lucky to hear the other students on a regular basis like this. I just wish I could point you to a YouTube vid of a performance from her.) I’m doing the studio classes in an effort to overcome the performance fear.

Well, it’s working. But only IN the studio class, because my brain has managed to trick my fear into believing it’s just an extension of my regular voice lesson, so hey, I’m allowed to make mistakes.

Yeah, not so much in solos at church. I flattened one note today, changed a word (okay, I can forgive myself that, and thankfully it was to a word that made sense) and then didn’t have enough support for the last little bit of the Agnus Dei. (You know, I first typed the Angus Dei. Whoooooooooole different thing, there. Although I’m sure that somewhere, somewhen, there’s a religion based on cow breeding and the god of bovine good intentions.)

So yeah, discouraged about performance and wondering omg, when, oh when, will have I get the nerves to work for rather than against me?

In addition to the writing last night, I first met Dru at CLU for one of the other professor’s art exhibit. Had a good time visiting, liked much of his stuff, and ate some yummy food. There was one assemblage that needed a story written: Mr. Tock’s Terror (Mansion, I think. Didn’t hold onto the last word.)

How cool to have a character named Mr. Tock–the evil bad guy, in a steampunk paradise.

Sadly the one I liked the best (which was, I think, a battlefield in 1864, with a ghostly figure out of texture rather than any color variation) was too rich for me: $1800. I hope he gets his asking price, though, and now that I know where the gallery on campus is (to get there, I drove around looking for Dru, all in black, with her hand clamped to the phone at her ear as she walked the middle of the main drag through campus) I can go back and visit my art again.

And now, time to change and get to work. If nothing else, I have to rid my head of the verse I sang this morning because I am SO OVER IT.

(Huh. Perhaps I am a tad strident there.

Don’t be ridiculous. I am not either in denial.)

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School has been filled with meetings. Lots of meetings. And more meetings on the horizon. I cannot tell you how thrilled I am at the prospect.

The best part of it are the sub days for meetings. (Tongue in cheek there. Nothing like writing up an entire day (or more) of sub plans in the hopes that the sub will run the day Just. Like. I. Do. Three pages later… and that’s only a half day, at this point.)

I am not doing the computer job at work. Am not. Am not. (Oh, that little problem you’re having? Fine, I’ll fix it. But I’m not doing the job and getting paid for it. Am not. Am not. Also, if I ever find the child who is turning off the volume on one machine in the lab every single day….)

Jury duty Friday. No actual meeting, but we fill a large room, listen to the keynote speakers as if, and pretend everyone else is invisible. However, the laptop comes, and hopefully there will be writing. See sub plans above.

The knee improves. I now know the difference between a sprain and a strain. Suffice it to say, I had/have a strained hamstring tendon. Supposedly, I can return to exercising, but I’m still concerned–even if I avoid the machine that I’m supposed to avoid. I can torque that tendon with a teensy-tiny twist and bend of the upper body. Wanna see?


Don’t ask about my trigger points. OMG. There’s not enough massage in the world for them.

Writing? Hell, no. I come home and collapse. Or go to choir practice, because one choir is not enough, and two are better, so this year I have two practices most weeks. Because they’re not on the same day. Oh, well. Love the new choir, though, run by my voice teacher. Knowledge does not always translate into the ability to be a darn good director. But this time it does. I am blessed.

My goal for next week is to be home before 5P most days. It’s a simple goal and one that should amuse me.

Or make me wail when I fail.

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