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I've decided to take Thursday nights off from the Resistance Manual work, partly because Friday is my early day and I am wiped by the end of the week, and partly because I just think it's good practice to take breaks from things to keep from burning out.

So I spent the evening submitting poetry instead. Partly because of the following conversation I had in email yesterday, but I mean, I've been submitting stuff a lot anyway. Still.

P = Professor at the college where I work who was also my English professor twenty-odd years ago
M = Me!

P: P.S., are you related to the Sandra Vannoy I taught twenty-some years ago, who was a really good poet?

M: I'm Sandra! And thanks so much. I loved your class, but I was too timid to bring it up before now.

P: Oh, wow! I still remember your poem about puddle-jumping. [goes on to be chatty for the rest of the exchange.]

My writing professor knew the name of one of my poems. Twenty years later. I was blown away. (I don't actually care that much for that poem now, of course, but still.)
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Happy Lunar New Year!

I spent the first half of the day just sleeping or staring into space, but I'm a lot less sick now as a result, so that's a good thing.

I was just made disability team lead on the Resistance Manual, and I would love it if some of you came and joined me in building those pages to be really great, as well as checking to make sure other areas on the RM are intersectional with regard to disability.

I have been writing every day and submitting several things a week, and I still don't know where the energy is coming from, but I'll take it. Maybe the cold weather really is my friend.

The debt-elimination project is going well. I'm blogging sporadically about it, but the best result so far is that after 2 months, we paid off 10% of our highest-interest card, and it's only going to get better.

And I got a stellar performance review at work, and applied for a better job on campus.

Let's see, is that it? Well, other than my mom possibly having a MRSA infection, yes. I think that's it for now. Now I'll go read your journals to see what you're up to.
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Because I have no plans this evening, and because I'm in writerly task-avoidance mode, I present to you a trio of Alphabet Memes!

Autocomplete browser bar, A to Z )

Things I value, A to Z )

Alphabet survey )
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First line of first public post each month in 2016:

January: Just finished Nnedi Okorafor's gorgeous The Book of Phoenix.

February: Hi, geeky darlings.

March: Let's see how much energy I have left for this.

April: [no posts]

May: Up since 4 for no good reason.

June: [no posts]

July: From SundayStealing, via [personal profile] hobbitbabe, with some of her answers kept/stolen.

August: When it was important to me that there be a Green Party in California, I worked for it.

September: I know it's supposed to be Wednesdays that we do this, but I'm rarely on here on weeknights, so I decided to do it while I'm thinking of it.

October: Edit: Bill @PenzeysSpices responded immediately to point me to this: which acknowledges some of my concerns.

November: Resilience [poem title]

December: This week began my two-week-and-change break from work.
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(Word-nerd note: I always kind of thought "volunteerism" was a misspelling of "voluntarism" and didn't know until I looked it up just now that they're distinct words with different meanings.)

I like volunteering. In my church youth group, I was always the one who stayed after to clean up, or came early to set up, or helped in the kitchen or the nursery. My fave part of a party is working behind the scenes to keep serving dishes and drinking glasses full. My fave thing about the holidays is cooking for people.

This is not altruistic, or not exactly. When I have a job to do, I don't stress nearly as much about the social interactions involved in being around people. I mean, I like helping people because it's the right/good thing to do, but one reason I do it is purely selfish: I can have human interaction without wondering what I'm supposed to be doing/saying in any particular moment.

My next volunteer gig will be with Border Angels, an organization that provides water and other aid to undocumented immigrants and others affected by our immigration system.

If, that is, I can get over my social anxiety for long enough to actually either turn in the job application or show up to a one-off event.

I'll do it, I will, but it's hard. I managed it for other volunteer gigs (AIDS Foundation, Women's Cancer Resource Center, etc.) and I'll manage it for this, but it's just... hard.
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Back in 2011/12, [personal profile] firecat combined a couple of different end-of-the-year survey thingies so lots of the numbers are repeated, and I think that's kind of fun, so I did it then, and I'm doing it now, with the years changed. I intend for this to become a daily journal again in 2017, so this is where I'm starting.

1. Was 2016 a good year for you?
Some things were good, but in general, no. Not very.

There's a TON more behind the cut )
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Fifteen years ago today, I made my first entry in this journal (at LiveJournal at the time). It was my 35th birthday (which makes today my 50th). Some changes:

Read more... )

My life right now is hard in different ways from before, but it's also joyful in the same ways, and peaceful in about equal measure. I like who I am. I like the people I surround myself with for the most part. Onward!
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Ganked from [personal profile] firecat, along with at least one of her answers.

1. Do you like blue cheese? Only in certain moods.
Read more... )
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From SundayStealing, via [personal profile] hobbitbabe, with some of her answers kept/stolen.

When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper?
I don't even remember. Long, long time.

Can you change the oil on a car?
Yes, but after a while, I realized it wasn't really cost-effective for me to do it myself.

Ever gotten a speeding ticket?

Run out of gas?

Favorite kind of sandwich?
I don't do sandwich-monogamy.
Tomato and mayo on soft wheat bread, with or without avocado and/or alfalfa sprouts. Butter is acceptable in place of or in addition to butter.
Egg salad on white with celery and [green] onion and mayonnaise, nothing else.
Grilled cheese.

Best thing to eat for breakfast?
Eggs florentine, maybe? Anything with hollandaise. Fried potatoes and onions. Ooh, blintzes! Leftover dinner food. Anything but cold pizza.

What is your usual bedtime?
Some time between 10 and 11.

Are you lazy?
About some things.

When you were a kid, what did you dress up as for Halloween?
I honestly don't have any idea. Can't remember.

Do you have any magazine subscriptions?
Yes. AARP, Cooking Light. From time to time, I sub to Vegetarian Times, Poets & Writers, and Writer's Digest. And my university sends me the alumni magazine, if that counts. And KPBS sends me the one for contributors.

Which are better, legos or lincoln logs?
I like 'em both.

Are you stubborn?
About some things. Mostly, I'm pretty flexible.

Who is better, Leno or Letterman?
I find Letterman (problematic fave) hilarious, and Leno annoys me like nails on chalkboards.

Ever watch soap operas?
In high school, during the summers, I watched three hours a day. One Life to Live, All My Children, and General Hospital. This was during Luke & Laura's young "courtship."

Afraid of heights?
Some. Nervous about them always, genuinely phobic about it when I feel I'm in an unprotected high place (side of a mountain, high building without sufficient railing, etc.).

Sing in the car?
SO much. Even did it a little on my vlog the other day:

Dance in the shower?
No. I'm an accident waiting to happen. That would end badly.

Dance in the car?

Ever used a gun?
Yes, in JROTC.

Do you think musicals are cheesy?
Some are. I love them.

Is Christmas stressful?
Not any more.

Ever eat a pierogi?
Oh yes. Love them.

Major annoyance right now?
That I have to go to work in 20 minutes.

Occupations you wanted to be when you were a kid?
Singer. That's it.

Do you believe in ghosts?
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Up since 4 for no good reason. Enjoying the quiet of a solitary Sunday. These are the times when I want to catch up with my peeps, so I've read your posts (haven't commented much, but I'm listening. Lisa, I love how you notice things about all your kids).

I've been spending a lot of time on SparkPeople lately, working on my food/exercise program (a.k.a. diet, but not for weight-loss, because ew). It's working (i.e., my blood is no longer testing as prediabetic, and I'm reducing my heart meds a little at a time with doctor supervision), so it benefits me to make it as fun as possible, which means a fair bit of online socializing, which is the bulk of my social life and has been for, wow, almost 18 years now (I got online in mid-1998).

Wiscon folks are being chatty on Twitter and it sounds really great, but considering who my friends are, it makes me wonder how things are in the background and how my friends who aren't going any more are feeling today. I want to hug you all.

Work is decent. Without the old boss, things are much calmer in my area, except when I stick my foot in my mouth and cause myself anxiety, but usually, things are good. I'm really good at working. That's something I don't always give myself credit for. I kind of suck at the social end of it, but the customer service part, I rock at, and the paperwork part is my STAR THING.

Mom is still dealing with major major pain issues and there's not much that can be done for a variety of reasons, so we (meaning she, I, James) try to keep her distracted and happy as much as possible. I foresee a time not too long from now when she'll decide it's not worth it any more. I will cope with that as best I can if/when it comes. This paragraph doesn't lend itself to language. There is much unsaid.

I haven't been writing. I'm not sure why. When there's time, I play my game or hang out online, and I just have no desire to write. I don't even really feel bad about it, though I do seem to be happier when I'm producing at least poems. But lately, just can't be arsed.

Enjoying (if that is the right word) Top of the Lake, but I love Elizabeth Moss and the kind of gritty police drama it's shaping up to be (I'm on the second episode), so it is a natural for me.

James is still obsessed with home shows, and that led to his new obsession, our house. It was apparently built by an artist/architect who turns out to be kind of interesting, and the house itself was a marvel when he built it in 1948/9, so James has become Mr. Research Man, constantly finding new bits of information about the guy. If you're awesome at finding out stuff about dead people and want to join the puzzle, let me know and I'll shoot you the guy's name. Since he got a lot of press that included our address, I don't want to just say it here.

The kid finished her first semester of college!! She thinks she got mostly As and a B. Either way, she finished!! It's not something she loves, but she chose to do it, and she finished. Super proud!

Dad and I are still working on, and he retired yesterday from his in-person teaching job (he still teaches a bunch of online classes), so he'll have more time for it soon. And I'll have Fridays off starting next week, so we're going to work on it together. If you want to learn college-level electronics online for cheap, let me know and I'll hook you up with some free coupons for his courses.

Hm, what else. Sister is still in jail. Nephew is still lackadaisically looking for work and living off his dad and my mom. I still miss the Bay Area and my peeps there (especially Guy, of course). I'm reading a little, cooking a little, staring into space a lot. My pain and dizziness are bad enough to make me tired and sad, but not any worse than that. I get a lot of joy out of little things, and my entire life feels like it's in a holding pattern while we live this stage of our life as well and as usefully as we know how.

Oh, and Black Twitter is still one of my most favorite things in all the world. And Captain Awkward. And YoIsThisRacist. And my game (Two Dots).

Much love, my lovelies.
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Was just reading a nice update post from a friend I see a lot of online, and it was really good to hear the details of what she's been up to. That made me want to give an update, too. I will put it under cut tags, because I'm feeling chatty.

We've been in San Diego for 18 months )

Personal/family stuff )

Dream job stuff )

Day job stuff )

Health stuff )


Feb. 26th, 2016 05:07 am
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Awoke at 4 to a random sound that my brain processed as something hitting the house. It was probably just someone closing a door in the house somewhere -- it's a big house. I also had the beginnings of a migraine, so it could've been exploding head syndrome, which I do get sometimes, and which is one of the coolest-named benign pschophysiological things ever (if you know of others, tell me -- cool names for shit are my lifeblood).

Anyway. Four in the morning.

Because of the impending migraine, I took aspirin and caffeine, and if I go back to sleep, I will doom myself to a full-blown migraine, so instead I have turned down the brightness on my monitor and settled in with DW/LJ and my "Right-hand Man" earworm to do a nice long update, which I haven't done in some time, and which will be under a series of cuts.

1a: Work babble )

1b. Residency, a.k.a. Work Babble Two )

Starting to get the migraine nausea, so I'm having trouble concentrating. I think I'll cut this short for now and pick it up later. Have a good weekend, my lovelies!


Nov. 16th, 2015 09:41 pm
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Finally doing a thing I'm dreadfully shy about, but it's something I want to do. The only way to do it at all was to let myself be bad at it at first, so while I was home sick today, I decided to start filming the first few of a daily vlog I'm going to publish. Here's the first one. If you watch, please be kind.

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Still reading, still not saying much. I'm writing lots of words lately, and caring about lots of things. Among them, my family and

1) #Mizzou in particular, and #BlackLivesMatter in general

2) My NaNo novel:

3) My dad's business, for which I'm doing some writing and some amateurish webmastering.

Things I'm happy about:

1) The Lovecraft thing.

2) My kid is moving down to San Diego!

3) I have tomorrow off from work and I don't have any plans besides lunch with mom and writing a gazillion words.

More when I get my brain back!
serene: I love the whole world. (love)
I feel like I always have at least one new project on the burner. Currently, it's a fun thing (or, really, group of things) I'm doing with my dad.

My dad has been teaching electronics forever, at the college level: robotics, programming, physics, etc. One day, we got to talking about his current baby, an online class that mirrors his in-person course in electronics. He likes it so much that he wants to expand that part of his work and do the online stuff more and more. I told him I'd like to help, and so I'm going to work on his website and social media stuff, and write some articles for his blog from a student's perspective. While I do that, I'd like to start my own video blog, which I've been meaning to do for a while, except I'm fighting camera-shyness.

I have stuff I'd like to vlog about: the Tempest Project, for one, which is a fun thing I'm doing. Also some cooking stuff. But so far, my new video camera is sitting unused on my desk.

Suggestions for getting past the resistance are welcome.

This heat wave can go suck it, too. Just saying.
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Ten, Nine, Eight... )
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...then I think these laundry-list posts are most of what I have in me. Eventually, you may hear from me on subjects other than me me me, but for now, me me me is what I have energy for. Today, in brief notes:

but there are MANY brief notes! )

I would love to hear how you've been lately. I've lost touch with folks as my job has eaten my life, but for now, no job = more life.

Nine days

Sep. 18th, 2014 06:46 am
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A week from Saturday, we'll hitch up the rental trailer, fill it with what's left of our belongings (not much, I'll tell you), and drive almost exactly 500 miles to our next home. I'm not exactly excited, but I'm looking forward to it. Not counting work-related stuff, I'm not very stressed at all, so that's good. I tend to like change, and I'll be moving nearer my mom and living in an apartment I like with a person I adore, so mostly, this is happy stuff.

James is a little stressed, but mainly because he spends all day home with no moving work to do. We (mostly he) started doing the work of moving months ago, and it's basically all done. Now we just wait. My last day of work is the 26th. We leave the next day.

Work will go on without me, but regardless of my expendability, I am trying to leave my stuff in as neat and take-over-able a condition as I can for the next guy, who is doing just fine in his training.

I don't have a job in San Diego yet. I'm a little stressed about that, but money will be fine for a few months, and by then I'll know if I can make enough from home to tide me over until I start a master's program in the fall. *If* I start a master's program in the fall.

So yeah. Lots of change, but a relatively small amount of stress. I'm fine with that.
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I am having a certain amount of fun training my replacement at The Best Job Ever, but it's also way stressful, and each day ends with me STUNNED that it's five o'clock already. I am pretty sure that we won't get to everything I want to train him on, but it looks like he'll get proficient at the most important stuff, and he's smart, so he'll figure out the rest. He's also good-natured, hardworking, etc. I'm not worried.

That said? There's a lot of stress, and one thing that's keeping me from imploding is to keep my purse nearby. Not just physically, though it's usually near me physically while I'm at work, but metaphorically, as well. That is, part of how I get through these immensely stressful days is to remind myself that if I wanted to, I could leave. I gave months of notice, and the new guy could take over tomorrow if necessary, so if it gets to be too much, I can leave.

Come to think of it, I kind of do my life that way. I don't stay when I'm not happy, but I also keep myself happy a lot of the time by reminding myself that staying is a choice. I'm not stuck, I'm choosing to follow through on something. I'm not trapped, I'm conscientious, and I like being conscientious, so I stay while I can, and I work on being happy about that, and if it becomes impossible for me to figure out how to stay? I bail.

Having just put my finger on how important that balance is for me this morning is really satisfying.


Aug. 18th, 2013 03:22 pm
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Cranky day made better by:

Another great link roundup from [personal profile] jae, especially this very lovely (and loving) story:

Clean sheets day, yay!

Fresh, delicious watermelon

An all-breakfast weekend -- I made waffles for breakfast, and then breakfast-for-lunch was shredded wheat and eggs that I didn't have to cook; breakfast-for-dinner will be mushroom omelettes and some kind of potatoes. Yesterday was, hmm, let's see. Breakfast: egg/bacon/cheese/potato/spinach burritos at The Berkeley Bowl. Lunch: Some breakfast pot pies we had in the freezer from our last Grocery Outlet run. Ham, cheese, and egg, from Marie Callender's. Dinner: sausage wraps (croissant dough baked around sausages).

And last but not least, Tramadol. I don't take it often, but when I do, wow, I really appreciate it.

(Dreamwidth auto-completed my "Music" field for me. He sure does love that game.)


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