llcoolvad: (newer)
Last day of vacation is over. Because I had the dental work done, I didn't get a lot accomplished during my break. I've also had a cold the last week or so, so that really dragged me down once I had finished with the dental stuff. (Plus the goddamned pain from coughing has made it very hard to be comfortable. I was up at Jenn's house yesterday with Patrick and Peter and we were playing Cards Against Humanity and it made me laugh and cough so much that today I feel like I broke a rib! Which is funny, but also sucks!)

It all makes me a bit frustrated, I have to admit. I had a list. I only crossed a few things off of it! I guess it's good that I got the cold and the dental work outside of work time, so I didn't have to miss any additional time, but if I wasn't being productive I could at least have been deliberately relaxing and doing nothing, and I just wasn't. I managed to get everything done for Christmas, of course, and I managed to clean the kitchen and do a bunch of laundry and return a couple of things and run a few mom-errands and help mom with her new laptop, and I did have a few social activities. But it was 12 days! I should have a bit more to show for 12 days. Like here it is, 12:45am Monday morning, and I probably should pay my bills out of the paycheck I got on the 26th. Nothing is due until the 10th, but still. I've put it off SINCE the 26th, that's the point. And I need to make my new budget for the new year. And things like that! Taxes! Etc.! GET IT TOGETHER, WOMAN!

But tomorrow is back to work, so I'll probably just go to bed soon. I don't want to go back there! They're all perfectly nice and all, but I just want to be retired already. Is that so bad? I asked mother tonight if she could write me a note so I could stay home. Just like when I was a kid she said no. Waaaah. We have no holidays now until Memorial Day, which is a long brutal stretch, so I'll have to take some long weekends at the least.

Next weekend I go to hang with S&V at their seaside home. I have been invited to stay over, so perhaps I shall do that (they have a whole second apartment in their house). I haven't attempted to sleep anywhere other than in my own bed since I got home from the hospital, so I dunno how I feel about that. No wedges! No down comforter! No down pillows! No little Zak! Will I SURVIVE??? (probably if I decide to sleep over I will bring a wedge and two or three pillows. I have a car, after all, and what am I, a barbarian?!)

Tomorrow I am going to try to get back to eating better, too. I have a pile of candy I'm bringing in to the office to leave out for the ravening hordes, and most of the ice cream in the house is gone. There's not much else to make me stray, so that should help. On the other hand, there's not much good in the house, either. I was busy on Saturday, and today was just too blah to get any grocery shopping done. Another thing to add to the list! Hopefully the routine of being back at work will make me snap out of this zombie state I am in.
llcoolvad: (newer)
Had a good vacation. Perfect weather Sun-Tue in Provincetown, where we ate good food, relaxed on the deck, wandered around downtown and looked at art, and visited the Whydah Pirate Museum (which, frankly, was uninspiring). Still, beautiful weather and fun times. There are pictures and a lot more text inside, lots of it about my health... )

As always, more pictures at Flickr.

vacation!

May. 31st, 2014 02:02 am
llcoolvad: (newer)
So the thing I don't like about the current job is the time off situation. And yes, I will freely admit that I was completely spoiled at my last job. Not only did I have five weeks of PTO, but we also got the week of Christmas to New Years off. So basically six weeks plus 10 holidays.

At this job I get three weeks vacation, one week sick, and 8 holidays. I am two full weeks plus two days short! And I am feeling every single one of them. Since I have to now save time for surgery and recovery, I am really short. Ugh. At my old job, if you had surgery or some other short-term disability, you got two weeks of 100% pay, then if it dragged on you got xx% (don't remember) of your pay for some length of time, after which it would switch to long-term disability. And you didn't have to touch even one day of your PTO.

At the new job, you have to use a week of PTO/sick to start. Then you get 60% of your salary for short-term disability for anything after that, until the long-term threshold. So that sucks, like every other aspect of our benefits. I guess I'll take the week and then work from home for a few days after that, then see how I feel about going back in. Obviously if I need more time I'll do the short-term disability thing, but I'd prefer not to at those rates. From my previous post-surgery blogging I see that I felt a lot better after three or four days, and pretty good after six, so assuming nothing goes horribly wrong it should basically be the same recovery rate, I'd think. Meaning the week of PTO with a few days at home after should be fine.

All of this is a long (and somewhat grim) way of saying that I'm on vacation now. Worked from home Friday, then I'll be leaving for the Cape Sunday morning and coming back Wednesday night. Three days of PTO is about all I can afford (I used 2 in March). That kills one of my three weeks. I've also used two sick days, so I have three left. Three sick plus 2 PTO minimum for my surgery. That leaves 8 PTO for the rest of the year. Sigh. I will use a couple around my birthday, and then the rest at XMas, I guess.

STOP WHINING YOU HAVE A JOB WITH PAID DAYS OFF YOU ARE SPOILED AND RIDICULOUS.

Yes, true.

SO I am going to enjoy the heck out of this vacation, anyway! I have tomorrow to plan and pack and get some stuff done around here before I flee. And then I don't need to think about home or work for many many hours. YAY!!
llcoolvad: (newer)
Well! I am officially unemployed, at least for another week. I had my last day at work Friday, and there was pizza and a card signed by everyone and an amazingly delicious cake (made by my culinary school grad pal Joanne) and then after work there was dinner at BBQ place Sweet Cheeks, near Fenway. It was all pretty awesome, but also totally bittersweet. After I dropped off one of my coworkers at her place, I was finally alone and burst into tears! Stress, I guess.

Anyway, now I am pretty mellow about all of it. I'm sure come Monday Sept 2, right around 8pm, I will start to lose it and get nervous again, but for now all is calm. I have a few plans for the week. Sunday I went to Stephen and Val's new beachfront place for dinner. Their place unexpectedly made me totally jealous (in a good way). The second floor deck looking out over the ocean! I want a deck looking out over the ocean! It was so nice to just sit there and see the waves and watch people walk by. My pals are a little light-sensitive (due to illness) so it's almost funny how shaded and blinded everything is. I imagine that if I lived there I'd take down all the shades, have a few sheers, and fill the place with plants. OK, I'd have shades in the bedroom and bathroom, duh! But it would be so nice to just live with the changing weather. I grew to appreciate the weather this summer being high up in my building downtown. Weather is so much more interesting when you can basically see the clouds form. Anyway, I love their new place.

Thursday I'm driving to western Mass to see Suzanne and go to the live show of "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" out at Tanglewood. That should be fun! I'll be spending the night at Suzanne's, as the show doesn't start til 8pm and I'm assuming that by the time it ends, Tanglewood to Boston might be a bit too long a trip to complete safely. I plan to go to my favorite Valley places while I'm out thataway, too, so more BBQ is in my immediate future.

Speaking of BBQ, my weight has gone totally to hell. By hell, I mean it's all gone totally to my gut and boobs and all the other unpleasant places weight goes when it comes back with a vengeance. In one year I've put back on 30+ pounds. PISSED OFF. Hoping that now that the uncertainty and stress of this job thing is mostly behind me I can get my shit back under control. There's a free gym at the new office. Hoping that will encourage me to get some workout time in. I think also having the ability to take a walk at lunchtime might help, too. I didn't have that at the downtown office. By the time you waited for the elevator, walked somewhere, got food, came back, waited for the elevator again, etc, most of break was over. The new place has a cafeteria in the building, and I'm hoping I'll bring lunches again. It was harder to bring lunches when you had to lug it around with you on the train and bus and whatnot. Plus my day was already too long. I couldn't deal with taking 10 extra minutes to make and pack lunch. Anyway, I probably won't try to start until I get comfy at the new place.

I think Sunday I am going to go see Elysium with Stephen, which should be good. Really loved District 9, and the aesthetic looks similar so yay, apocalyptic bleached-by-the-sun landscapes! I might try to sneak in one other movie at some point this week, also. I didn't do my classic "watch the worst movie I can find on my birthday" thing, due to working, so I am a little bummed about that. I guess I don't have to be a slave to tradition. Maybe I'll go to the best movie I can find, instead! I have been renting Redbox flicks, and saw a few really good ones last week ("Mud" was a standout) so there's that.

So that's all the news. I am spending some time getting the house a little more orderly than it has been since my stupid commute started. Deep cleaned the bathroom. Washed down some floors. Tidied a few other places. Been pounding laundry like mad. Got a lot more to do, but since I only have a couple of things planned, I should have time (and hopefully some enthusiasm) to get a bunch done. I wish I could have taken more time in between jobs, but the week is pretty good.
llcoolvad: (new)

Back to work yesterday. Woo! Hard to get up. The cat was annoyed. She was already used to me staying home. Ah well, that's my life: disappointing felines.

So I started using "Day One", which is a journaling app on the iPad. It's nice because it's really clean and simple and it lets you add a picture to each day. I am pretty obsessive, so once I start doing a thing I do it every day. The app chimes a little reminder to update, and knowing I'm going to update makes me take a picture at some point throughout my day, so it's sort of serving a dual purpose. It means I have very little floating around in my brain for here, though. I guess I can refer back.

Hmm. I really spent most of my week off doing a lot of nothing, but a good kind of nothing. Going to stores I never get a chance to go to. Sleeping in. Catching up on some movies (finally watched the other two Swedish "Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" movies. Very good! I admit it, I watched the dubbed versions. Dubbed is not something I normally seek out, but I have little patience lately and can't sit in a chair and just watch a movie unless I'm at a theater. Can't casually watch a subtitled movie, so dubbed it is!). Catching up on some DVRd summer shows, stuff like that. I also got outside a lot. Walks, ambles, trips to nowhere. The weather was just perfect all week.

On Thursday I headed out to get my hair cut, then had lunch. Since I went to Five Guys and ate more fries than I should have, I decided to take a walk at Breakheart Reservation again. I loaded up on bug spray and hit the hill side first (an aside: I guess I am fairly unique in going that way. Most people start on the flat side and then work their way to the hills, but P took me the hill side first, and that makes sense to me. Get it over with while you're fresh and have energy!), but somehow missed the turnoff for the longer path. Realized it fairly quickly, so I decided that I'd make my walk a little more challenging since it would be shorter, and since I was mostly alone up there and no one could see me, I started to jog on the downhills and flat parts. Not a LOT, mind you. A minute here, a minute there. But hey! That's FREAKING AMAZING. It wasn't even awful. It was sorta ok. I was worried about my knees, because even after 85 pounds off or whatever, there is still a LOT of me to haul around. But they seemed ok. (I felt a little shin splinty, so we'll have to see how that goes.) In fact, they seemed so ok that I decided to do a second circuit and see if I could do more. So I did a second whole loop, ran on some of the flats and downhills, and upped my pace walking on the uphills. Did four miles altogether, mostly walking, but some of it at speed! So weird. I got caught one time: I was trying to run when no one was around, because ugh! But some guy zoomed around the corner on a bike coming towards me, and as we passed he gave me a thumbs up and said "Great job!" which was both nice and kinda embarrassing. Everyone is SUPER NICE up there. Greetings and smiles all around. Eerie.

The rest of the weekend was more shopping, the play (Patrick's boyfriend Peter is the lead), dinner with P's mom, P, and Peter for P's birthday, weights class, house cleaning, reading, picture taking, etc. I'll do another entry for Monday, because that was a pretty eventful day--apple picking and the Big E! But there are pictures, and this is long enough. 

llcoolvad: (new)
It feels like it's already been a week away from work, and it's really only been a long weekend. I had a lot of things to do this last few days, all neatly portioned out. Saturday before work I had to get up super early and drive mom's car for 100 highway miles so she could (hopefully) finally get her car to pass inspection. She really doesn't feel comfortable driving on the highway anymore. I hopped on 93N, took 495S, and then turned around at mile 50. SPOILER: it still hasn't passed. We're still hopeful. The state apparently doesn't allow you to continue to be inspected after you fail for the thing mom is failing for (something to do with the catalytic converter needing to be reset? I have no idea) twice, so now she has to bring it to a very specific place and they'll reset the inspection computer system. And then she has to have it inspected AGAIN! Dear god.

Then I headed in to work, but it was really dead so Mike sent us home early. Which was great, because P and I had decided to see the Soderbergh stripper man-fest "Magic Mike" — the role Matthew McConaughey was born to play — and it started pretty early. Was awesome in an awesome way (well, ok, some of the plot was a little, um, obvious? But it didn't matter: the pretty men!). Patrick pointed out that all of the men in the audience around us were in pairs. Aw, couples' night out!

Sunday I had to get up super early to drive out to western Mass to help Suzanne pack and move a subset of her things from Sunderland to Shutesbury. Stayed pretty late so we could have a delightful Japanese dinner together with Miss Janet (who had heroically spent four days painting Suzanne's new house). I was so tired I wasn't sure I'd make it home in one piece, despite skipping the sake. By the time I got out of the car after toiling all day and then sitting perfectly still for several hours I was pretty stiff; felt like I was 900 years old as I staggered from my car to the apartment. I slept like the dead for 10 hours pretty much straight. Didn't even check email or facebook when I got home!

Monday I had an invitation from my coworker Joanne to go to see the Tall Ships in Boston, but I couldn't make it. Had to take mom to her afternoon eye appointment (they were going to put in drops) so she could get the ball rolling to get the other cataract done. Came home and couldn't really get out of my own way until the evening; still tired! Took my walk, stopped in at the YMCA in my town (ok, male strippers AND "YMCA" — recipe for earworm HELL), took a tour of the gym and pool, signed up on the spot. I've had a +1 family addition on Patrick's LA Fitness membership for a year and a half now, but I never go because it involves driving over there. I can walk to the Y, so I'm pretty sure I'll use it more. Plus there's no annual membership bullshit. Pay month to month and quit anytime. Yay! Walked to the library after and picked up another JLB "Dave Robicheaux" audio book. Save myself an Audible credit. Took the long way home so I could get in more of a walk, but honestly pretty sore still from Sunday, so only did 40 minutes instead of my usual hour. Moving sucks! Even the small amount I did. Poor Suzanne.

Today I did my Monday chores stuff. Recycling, groceries, stopped by the old gym to cancel my part of the membership, other errands, then dishes, dinner, laundry, etc. Not a lot to write about, although I mostly enjoyed the heat all day. My car is full of stuff — stuff I'd stored for years in Suzanne's basement — and man does it stink of mildew. Dunno if it's just the cardboard of the boxes, although I doubt it. I think the books I stored down there are doomed. Gotta go thru it all in the next few days and decide if I'll try to save any of it, but in the meantime my car stinks! I am sorta hoping that the furnace that the car becomes in the heat will burn some of it out.

And finally tomorrow is over to P's mom's house for the 4th. Should be fun! I usually have a good time. I plan on eating like a normal non-dieting person, although as P pointed out earlier, I can't eat as much as I used to. I get full a lot faster. But I am going to give it the old college try. Deviled eggs! Burgers! Calzones! The best sugar cookies on the planet! Yummy dip! Yay!

Happy 4th to all!
llcoolvad: (new)
Sunday the 10th started my long weekend in Provincetown with my pals Steve and Val. Had a good time, and for the first time since I've been going there I was able to walk into town, and walk all over town, and walk on the beach, and so on! Awesome! Took a ton of photos, too. We also did the drive-in movies, and decided this time to take two cars so no one was stuck in the back seat, which was an excellent decision. I really love the drive-in and I don't even know why! I mean, the visuals aren't great. The sound is ok. The movies are never ones you'd necessarily choose, since there's always a kid one first, and then the more grownup one after (we saw Madagascar 3 and Men in Black 3). I guess it's nice to not have to deal with other people breathing down your neck and rustling wrappers and walking in front of you. The car is way more comfy than an average theater seat, for sure. I don't think it's the nostalgia for me, because I never went to drive-ins as a kid. But I love them.

IMG_1545

Meep meep!

more within )
llcoolvad: (Default)
Had some sociality this week: Sunday through Tuesday I headed off to the Cape for what has become my traditional long weekend with Steve and Val. They're swell to keep inviting me. I'm not even sure why they do; I am SO BORING when I'm there. I arrive, we hang out, we go to Fanizzi's for dinner, we come home, we watch a movie. The next day it's cereal for breakfast, sandwiches from either Far Land or Angel Foods. Dinner varies. Evening entertainment might be a drive-in movie. Tuesday is cereal for breakfast, sandwiches from whichever of the two we didn't already hit, then I leave around 1 or 2 and drive home. Everything else is doing a puzzle, sitting in the sun on the beach, chatting, or just reading. This year I didn't even bring my camera. I felt like a break even from taking pictures. It's so nice, but it's not EXCITING. It is, however, EXACTLY what I want to do, so I think it's awesome!

It does give me a lot of together time with S&V, which is good. And it gives me away time -- much more important back when I lived with Mom, less important now that I have my own place. Still, a break in routine is good. I need to do long weekends away more often. It's very rejuvenating.

Wednesday I worked from home, and Brian got to work from home too, which was nice. We got to basically spend the whole day together, eat lunch together, etc. Also meant that since we weren't losing several hours of our day to commuting we could go and get some shopping done after work. The 8th was Dad's birthday, which usually makes Mom pretty sad, but she seemed to be mostly sane this year. I stopped by before Brian and I went shopping and put in her a/c and helped her change her sheets, so maybe that helped a little.

Today, Thursday, was brutal for most of the day. For some reason (it was raining) the commute was awful. It was slamming busy all day at work, mostly with dumb hard stuff, too. So busy my boss ordered in lunch for us, so we all worked through. Brian asked me midday if we could do our date night tonight instead of tomorrow, which sounded perfect to me. We both wanted to see "Fast Five" (THE ROCK?! VIN?! I'm so there) and the only movie theater in the entire tri-state area with a convenient showing time for it was directly across from Brian's office. I took the T into town to meet him, we hit a pub for some dinner, and then topped it off with the movie. Brian took me to see his office (located in the Park Plaza office building) and then we headed home. I am now watching the Red Sox at Yankee Stadium after a 3.5 hour rain delay. I should probably climb into bed with my Kindle, get some extra sleep.

I need to spend this weekend getting some tedious stuff done. Paperwork, bills, applications, etc. all need attention, so maybe I can plow through some. Anyway, that's the plan. Maybe a trip up to Pelham on Sunday to hit the arcade again? But only if I'm good and get everything done first!
llcoolvad: (hair)
The last couple of days of vacation were pretty productive. I managed to finish weeding all the books. All my non-fiction is now organized and fits on the shelves I have, with no additional books in front of them, and with two shelves extra (Brian's stuff, and my puzzles and games). Very satisfying. I still have way too many books. I guess maybe every spring I'll do another weeding (as one does). I removed about 160 books; not entirely certain, but that's a close-enough number, bringing my two-time total to over 500 books out the door. Feels good.

I also cleaned up the downstairs completely and it looks pretty good now! We're planning on making some changes in the kitchen when we have some energy (ok, maybe that's just me), but for now things look good and work well. On Monday I didn't do a lot. A few chores for mom and for me. Read some. Napped some. Prepped a little to go back to work. I don't remember anything else remarkable...oh, wait! I remember, I was inspired by

Photobucket
Big Blue


my new CD palace (isn't it cute? I heart it), and started my music cataloging in earnest. I updated both my ipod and iphone, got through noting everything that's already on the 'pod in a spreadsheet, deleted duplicates, cleaned out orphans, basically got things in ship-shape. I need to finish cataloging the CDs, and then tackle the hard drive. But I have made a lot of progress, and feel confident that I have almost all of my music now sorted out and readily available for playing. Yet more progress.

My next project will be much easier. I need to get rid of some clothes. That doesn't need to take more than an evening after work, however. I need new stuff, and frankly until I get rid of old I have nowhere for new. Motivation! I have no emotional attachment to my clothes; I find it dead easy to just pile stuff in bags and bring 'em to goodwill, so this project should be very easy. Yay, easy!

This week back to work has been a little better. I've been calmer. I have weird physical symptoms this week, though. One of my ankles has swollen up a couple of times in the evening, which doesn't hurt or anything but is weird to see. My other leg has a really tight tendon or something that makes it very painful to get up. I have pretty much convinced myself that I need to go back to physical therapy. I am hugely grateful that my health insurance allows me 100 physical therapy visits per calendar year. I just wish the co-pays weren't $15. If I go three times per week that's $45, or $180 per month. I don't really want to have to afford it, but hey, it would be nice to be able to get out of a chair readily, right? And they can work on my back again. It still sucks. Man, I hate this getting old business.

So that's been the week. I started this morning, as I do every morning, by opening the shades for the cat so she can sunbathe all day. Today, however, the shade smacked the bedside lamp onto my bed, where the bulb shattered most spectacularly. Broken light bulb in my bed, on the chair, all over the floor! And I was running late to work, so I only had time for the barest cleanup. Had to spend this evening moving the bed, changing the sheets, sweeping everywhere, changing the pillowcases, etc. I have a rule: no glasses on the second floor. We use plastic cups, so if something gets knocked over the place where we're barefoot a lot (bathroom is on the second floor too) is still safe for our tender feet. Sigh. Not from marauding light bulbs, though! Tricky bastards.

Hopefully as I fling myself into my new sheets tonight I will not shred myself to death. Wish me luck!

late-vac

Apr. 30th, 2011 11:37 pm
llcoolvad: (hair)
Ah, only two days left, now. It's ok, it's been a good vacation. Of the staycation kind.

Yesterday I continued my book weeding, but I had to pause late afternoon to take Ria to the vet. She had been sneezing a lot for a couple of days, and I didn't want to go into the weekend without having someone look at her. It came on very suddenly, and as she's an indoor cat with no exposure to other cats I had no idea what it could be.

After a pretty thorough exam, my vet said that she probably is having a flare-up of feline herpes. Say what? I'd never even heard of feline herpes. Apparently it's common in ex-feral or shelter kitties (of which Ria is one). Much like other forms of herpes, once you get it there's no cure. In cats, it manifests as a respiratory illness. And because it's viral, there isn't much they can do for it. He told me to keep an eye on her discharge, and if it turns something other than clear she might have a secondary infection and she should go on antibiotics. But for now, I just listen to sad kitty sneezes. She's so annoyed by it; she gets so indignant every time she has a sneezing fit. It's making her super affectionate, too, which is so NOT Ria. Brian's away for the weekend and she spent last night cuddled up to me in bed. Very cute, and so sad! Sick kitties are sad kitties.

I brought her home, then headed over to Burlington to hit the local L.L. Bean. I was hoping to find some shoes, and I was hoping to get my bag (that I bought there about three years ago) fixed or replaced. Alas! I failed at both. Nothing in my size that I liked or that felt good on my feet, and the bag was discontinued. They were willing to give me a credit for it, but I can still use it and it's perfect for work, so no thanks. (The strap had a failure point, and I've basically carabiner-ed it together, but I was hoping their returns policy would help me get a new strap. No joy!)

Did more book sorting and weeding last night. Today I wanted to go to IKEA. I had all my CDs in various places in the house, and the main storage thing I had for it was really rickety and frankly way too small. Even after I'd weeded out hundreds of CDs last fall, I still have almost 700. IKEA's Benno in blue to the rescue. Patrick and I drove down, got some Swedish meatballs in the cafe, then wandered around a bit. I bought a plant, some plant pots, four Bennos, and a basket. Patrick bought nothing, but did all my heavy lifting for me. Brought them upstairs, even! I spent the afternoon assembling them and filling them with my CDs, and finally every CD I own is in one place! Very nice. And I am digging the blue. Very cheerful. I will take some pix tomorrow when there is light.

My knees are death right now, so as much as I'd like to spend a few more hours and wrap up the book project I think it needs to wait until morning. I'm going to pound some more 'profen and crawl into bed with sick kitty and kindle. Dexter is distracting!

mid-vac

Apr. 29th, 2011 02:10 am
llcoolvad: (hair)

Tuesday was Mom's cataract surgery. I have to say that production-line surgery is fascinatingly efficient. The place we went does NOTHING other than eye surgeries, and there were at least five other people in at the same time as Mom. She walked in to the surgical unit at 12:30; walked out at 3:00 with a bandage on her eye, a new tote bag, and a plant (it's a thing they do, I guess); we then went to her doctor's office at 5:00, and by 6:00 she was back home with the bandage off and looking out of her new lens. So speedy! And she said there was no pain, and aside from reaching up occasionally to try to rub it (and catching herself just in time) there's no issue at all. They have her sleep in a plastic eye protector that she puts on with medical tape. And that's it. She's a complete anxiety-ridden hypochondriac, but even she admitted she'd do the other eye when she needed to.

So basically I spent all day doing that stuff with her (which meant I mostly sat around reading and being vaguely anxious all day). Tuesday night I sorted through a few weeks' worth of mail and paperwork and bills and such, wrote checks, clipped coupons, and recycled crap. Wednesday morning I filed it all away. I also brought Mom some lunch, did her grocery shopping, mailed off some stuff, did all my laundry, cleaned the bathroom top to bottom, and did the dishes. AND I made some more progress on my music weeding and organizing. Sigh. I really want one of my projects over with! I watched some tv at night and kept trying to get motivated, but I guess I have a maximum per day I will let myself do.

Today was almost a total wash. I woke up and it was so humid I felt disgusting. Every joint was sore, especially my knees. Hit the 'profen hard, hung around reading the internet until it kicked in. Put away my final load of laundry, then went out for some lunch. Had a free lunch on a loyalty card, so I used that. Came home and slouched around doing nothing much, then Patrick came home and we chatted for a while. Met Brian at the train and we did a quick grocery shopping, stopped at REI, then stopped at Home Depot. Home again, he made dinner and I started digging into PART TWO of my book weeding project from last summer. I had a sudden urge, so hey, strike while the iron is hot, right?

It's now the spring, see, which is when the Friends of the Library lady said she'd accept more donations. And oh yes, have I got stuff for her! I moved all the furniture around in the living room (both so I could easily get to the bookcases, AND so I could have a lot of flat surfaces to put everything on). Last summer I really only weeded the fiction, so now I'm working on the non-fiction. Also when I emptied out my storage unit last year I was focused on regaining floor space and losing boxes, so while I was obsessive about alphabetizing and spreadsheet-ing my fiction, I did nothing at all to the non-fiction. It's basically on the shelves with no order whatsoever, so I'm organizing and weeding at the same time. I have some amusingly ancient high school texts on things like Biology and Astronomy and Oceanography, and while they give me warm fuzzy feelings of nostalgia, they are about as much use as my ancient computer texts (goodbye Pascal!). I am tempted to keep my history texts from yore, because I fear the Texas Board of Education and what they're doing to history and social studies, but I can't be the keeper of knowledge for all of mankind, so I think those will have to go, too.

I try not give useless out of date stuff to the Friends of the Library. I use the "Got Books" bins for anything I don't think the library book sale will find a home for. They are pledged to at least recycle anything they can't use. And since they bug me with their veneer of non-profit when in fact they're for-profit, let 'em deal with the rubbish. I dumped a load of elderly computer books and travel guides on them last year.

Ideally I want to have only good books, and books that will fit on the shelves that I already have, and not another line of books in front of each shelf. Additionally, I'd like a couple of empty shelves so Brian can put his stuff on them, too. And I'd like to have somewhere for my puzzles. So I really need to weed this stuff HARD. And I am ready. I dunno if I'll be able to part with the Latin textbooks, but I think I can lose enough other junk to make up for them.

Hopefully I'll get that done tomorrow, leaving me the weekend to find some fun. I'm just not that good at fun. I'm better at this.

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llcoolvad: (Default)
Spent Sunday mostly napping, watching baseball, eating, and ... that's about it. Nice!

Today I did some chores (recycling, can returns, grocery shopping, a few dishes, etc.), and I also did two of the things I wanted to get done this week: I renewed both my BPL and Cambridge public library cards (have to drive to a branch to do so, so I did), and I did a project for a friend involving collecting some files.

Yay! Chatted with [livejournal.com profile] zanzjan on the phone about life, and she pointed me to some local free shredding events. I am excited. Maybe it will motivate me to go through the boxes in my room? At any rate, I have several boxes all ready to go, so even if I do no more I have a goal.

I haven't done any shoe shopping yet. Carrie Bradshaw would be appalled at my slackitude. Tomorrow is Mom's cataract surgery, so I need to be up and alert for that. Maybe shoe shop on Thursday. I want to front-load the misery for chores and unpleasantness so I can relax at the end of the week.

Anyway, so far so good. Not thinking about work, and trying to keep the drama to a minimum.

updated completed books list inside )

vaca-soon

Apr. 23rd, 2011 12:54 am
llcoolvad: (hair)
One more shift, and then I'm taking a week off. BURNT OUT. Too much has been going on for too long, need a break from my daily grind. There are all these things I need to do out in the world that I never find time for. Like buying shoes. I really need a bunch of new shoes. Sandals, work shoes, more work shoes. Everything is shabby and stretched and unflattering and bleah. So I'm taking a week off to shoe shop!

And do other things too. I need new clothes. I need to place my order for some new glasses. I need some time to be non-stressed and just do some stuff. Mom is having cataract surgery on Tuesday, so she'll be a basket case until that's over. Which means she'll make ME a basket case. I figure my relaxation will start on Wednesday.

I get about five weeks of vacation time. After next week I'll have already used two weeks; I admit it gives me pause to be only a third of the way through the year and have only three weeks left. Theresa asked me why I'd want this next week off, why not wait until better weather. She's my boss, and even though we're good friends I just couldn't give her the real reason: walking in the door every morning is slowly killing me, and I need a week to not be dying. I told her partial truth: I am really sore, my back, my arm, and I need to get away from all computers for a bit. I am planning to be away from computers all next week, except maybe perhaps in the late evening, while I watch baseball.

One more shift, tomorrow. Then maybe I can breathe.
llcoolvad: (cold)
Ah, sadness. The last day of vacation. I have a coworker who, every year, takes the entire month of December off, and returns usually around January 3. I don't honestly understand how he manages to drag himself back to the office after so much time off. I am just now starting to get into a time off groove, and bam, now I have to go back. It's NOT FAIR!

I do feel pretty relaxed. The holidays are over, order is mostly restored to the house, I've managed to get some rest, and I even did some work on a few projects. Still, I wish I had until next Tuesday off. Now that I've hit my groove and all.

Today a different coworker emailed me pictures of a kitty that needs a home. She's trying to convince me to take her, but I think Mom would be a better fit, so I passed the pics along to her with the kitty's sob story. Her name is Lola (she was a showgirl) and she's very pretty. I'm hoping I wear Mom down. The pictures are working, I think, because partway through the day Mom called me and said "Sally Ali is pondering your suggestion. I think she's intrigued." Sally Ali is Mom's current cat, who I think needs a friend. So here's hoping! I don't think we need another girl cat in the house, here. We have two already, and they're cranky old biddies. I think they'd be mean to pretty Lola.

Also today: got the ice maker returned (note to the universe: if you buy something online from Home Depot, they're totally cool with you returning it in a store. And here's a hint: if it's defective, they even refund your shipping costs. Even if you shipped it next day! Very good of them.). Got some lunch, did a little food shopping. And then I came home and finished cleaning the first floor (living room and kitchen) — I say finished because Brian had done a lot of it, like dishes, cleaning the catboxes, taking out the trash, washing the kitchen floor, moving stuff down into the basement, etc. I did the finishing touches like shaking out the doormat, washing the boot tray, sweeping, wiping down the stove, cleaning off the junk area over the microwave, wiping down cabinets, clearing off the table, cleaning off the coffee table, dusting, etc. Detritus collects, you know? And sometimes one must be ruthless.

So I did that, started some laundry, and settled in to wait for the landlord. Our stove is busted and our dishwasher has been busted for a while; I only told him about it in a note with my rent check, though, so he had told me he'd be over tonight to diagnose it. Well, it's 12:08AM. I'm thinking he's not coming? I tried calling and got sent direct to voicemail, so I think probably something came up. Still, a phone call or email would have been nice. I sat around basically all night waiting. Ah well. He's normally really proactive, so I am willing to cut him some slack. Once.

Brian was feeling poorly tonight, so we decided to get pizza. IM'd Patrick and asked him if he wanted to order with us, which worked out nicely. He came over for a while and we watched some TV and ate our dinners. And now Brian is sacked out, I'm bored with television, and thinking I should really clean out the office now to match the rest of the house. And because I need to use it to work from home tomorrow and my desk is piled with two week's worth of junk.

Maybe I'll just watch some more Wire in the Blood and then go to bed early?

'Bye, vacation! I'll miss you...
llcoolvad: (cold)
Whoops! Started watching "Collision" on Netflix last night and got so engrossed I ended up watching it into the wee hours and went to bed without updating. But hey, I didn't really do a lot to report yesterday anyway. Brian and I tried to get some brunch out, but I guess it was a big weekend for brunch, and everywhere was simply packed, so we ended up running a couple of necessary errands and then getting breakfast burritos at Sonic. Not exactly the same thing, but it was a nice warm day so sitting in the carhop area with the windows down and the sunroof open was pleasant enough. After that, I just don't know. I farted around on the shiny laptop. I made sure my tvgrid and my season passes all matched. I updated my Kindle Books Bought spreadsheet, and used my certificate from Coinstar to buy a bunch more things to read. I moved my music files onto the laptop and have started the painful horrible process of organizing them all. Mostly that means I'm reading other people's ideas on the best way to do so. Tagging, building a database, stuff like that. Bleah. Spent the latest part of the night watching "Collision" as noted above (a "Masterpiece Contemporary" multi-part drama about a six car pileup in Britain and its causes and victims. Was pretty good!)

Today was sort of similar. Had an eye appointment at 1:40, so I woke up and messed around on the internet until it was time to go. Got there early, had to wait forever. Appointment itself was pretty speedy, mostly because my eye doctor doesn't listen to me at all and just hums along to himself doing his thing. I need to find a new guy, but I need a new prescription so I'm just continuing with him until I change. He did manage to give me the prescription the way I wanted him to, which was with the pupillary distance added so I could use Zenni Optical. I've been wanting to try them for a long time, as their prices are awesome (really! Under $25 for a whole pair, lenses AND frames!). If I like them I could get a new pair of glasses for every month! Not that I would. I usually wear one pair of glasses til they literally fall off my face (as these are doing, now), but it sure would be nice to have Rx sunglasses. And reading glasses. And a backup pair. And pretty colors! and... Of course I am ignoring the whole "I need bifocals now because I am elderly and blind, damn it" aspect of this day.

Anyway, I did that. Then, to make up for Friday of Fail, I managed to get into Comcast to return all my equipment. It was kind of funny; I had two big cable boxes, two small ones, four remotes, an internet modem, all the corresponding cables, and a phone modem. The clerk sort of shuddered and said "are you returning all of that?" Yep, sorry to ruin your day, hon. It was hugely busy there, with a line stretching out the door and down into the parking lot, too. In fact, while I was waiting in line, I got a text on my phone from Comcast, reminding me to return my equipment ASAP. Amusing timing. So I texted them back saying "Ironic, as I am waiting in line in Malden right now trying to do that. If you want it back sooner, put on more clerks." I'm sure the robot that sent out the reminder texts was hugely edified.

Came home, napped, picked up dinner, farted around some more. Like now! Installed some software, played around with files more, etc.

Last day of vacation tomorrow. I need to do two weeks' worth of laundry, tidy up the kitchen a bit (landlord coming in to fix the stove in the PM), and return my lovely ice maker gift to the store (alas, it is broken. and not entirely what I was hoping it was). I haven't finished all the things I wanted to finish, but I got a bunch of relaxing in and did a bunch of other things, instead, so I guess vacation has been a thumbs-up, overall.
llcoolvad: (cold)
Both a social and fairly productive day. After breakfast I did some stuff in the living room -- took down the Christmas tree, organized all the ornaments and decorations and repacked them, moved furniture so I could sweep underneath, programmed the downstairs Tivo with new cable company channel lineup, did a few other small things.

This evening Brian and I headed over to Stephen and Val's place for dinner and chat, which was fun. Got home, surfed web, did usual nighttime stuff. Television sucks this week, and I've been enamored of the new laptop, so I haven't really been watching much of anything. The occasional movie, random tv shows (watched a Rockford Files episode last night, a few Twilight Zone eps tonight); mostly nothing, though.

Leaves me with a lot of time! I just wish I could use that time to catch up on my sleep debt. I've been trying to sleep in lately, but I generally fail. I just seem to wake up automatically by 10:00 at the very latest, and since I go to bed no earlier than 2, generally, that's 8 hours but no more. And mostly while I'm on vacation I don't get to sleep until 3, so I'm even behind. Thanks to my apnea and my inability to get used to the CPAP machine, my sleep isn't deep, so every day my brain gets a little fuzzier. Clearly I need to force myself to get used to the machine. I hate it so, though!
llcoolvad: (cold)
Today started poorly. Left the house with five errands to run: 1. cash in coins at coinstar to get an amazon certificate (it is what I use to buy ebooks); 2. get mom's recycling to city yard; 3. go to comcast, return equipment; 4. drop off rent check; and 5. get lunch. Simple enough, make a big loop and bam. Done in no more than an hour, right?

You'd think. Just one of those days, though. Coinstar machine I usually use was broken! Traffic snarling everything! City Yard bin was stuffed so full stuff was falling out and I couldn't add anything! Comcast closed at 1 and I wasn't told that when I called ahead! Tried to get to somewhere to eat lunch and the traffic slapped me around, so I just finally went home and sulked and didn't pay my rent!

The only redeeming part to the first half of my day was that I remembered another Coinstar location and when I came out there were real girl scouts selling real girl scout cookies. Delicious girl scouts...

The second half of the day started poorly, too. The delightful ice machine that I got for xmas started making a horrible burning plastic smell and stopped popping out ice cubes. So that sucked. I sat around feeling sorry for myself, so I forced Brian and Patrick to go out to dinner. And even though our food was mediocre and our service nice but inept, it snapped me out of my funk, and finally I felt human again. Patrick and I watched "The Town," and then topped the evening off with Dick Clark and Ryan Seacrest. Nothing cheers me up more than snarking about fake excitement, so yay! We watched the ball drop, didn't watch Snooki, and was amused by NKOTBSB hobbling around on stage. How does Donnie Wahlberg keep a straight face? I guess it made it a total Boston night. The Town and NKOTB, dueling accents and bad hair. Wicked pissah!

Happy frickin New Year, everyone! Glad to see 2010 left in the dust. Onward and upward.
llcoolvad: (cold)
Ack! Already a week gone. Only five more days of time off — past the halfway point! Got some stuff done today — brought mom to her surgeon's office to get her staples out. Ran some errands for her. Went out with Brian in the evening to get some dinner, then did some shopping. Home to nothing on TV and energy flagging.

Ended up watching "Knowing" on demand. Man, what a bad film. I was so happy when cut for spoiler! )
llcoolvad: (cold)
Trying to post daily, but since P and I are spending a lot of time together, lately, if you read both of us you will read a lot of overlap. Sorry!

Today was Fun Day, and for us that generally means a car trip somewhere. We decided on western MA, since it was a medium-long trip and had good food at the end. We also pulled Suzanne into our wake, so she was forced along to Panda East in Amherst, and La Fiorentina (MAN that's a lame website), here's a better image, and Herrell's in Northampton (plus other, non-food-related places). Got to say hi to her eldest child and the pets, so that was good, too. Had a reasonably good drive (made better by my heated seats in my car — so awesome), made it home alive and collapsed. Did all the driving, so I seriously appreciated flopping on my bed after.

A couple of notes about our food experiences: I went to Panda East A LOT during my 90+ years of college, so I admit to a strong bias. And honestly? It was pretty much exactly as I remembered it. Great scallion pancakes! Pretty great hot and sour soup! Everything else was pretty good!

La Fiorentina was as unbelievably delicious as always, but I ordered two cannolis and two eclairs and came home with one cannoli and two eclairs. Le sigh. I should have opened the box, but they tape 'em up and I wasn't ready to eat them yet.

And finally Herrell's: First of all, there was one employee behind the counter actively working, and another employee behind the counter flirting with some cute boy. That's fine, but flirt and WORK at the same time. It turns out she was "on break", but hey, get out from behind the counter then, and don't cause us undue agita. Secondly, the working employee was slow as molasses. Why do some ice cream joints still use the stick blenders? They take FOREVER and require constant attention. Get a real blender and figure a way to rinse in between orders. And finally? YUM. I love their fudge, and I love their whipped cream. Those two ingredients are why I go there at all. And the smoosh-ins are great, too. Ah, Herrell's. Such a mixed bag!

Didn't do much this evening, other than eat my one delicious cannoli from the aforementioned La Fiorentina. Tomorrow I need to make sure Mom gets her staples out; I'd also like to swing by a Comcast and return all my equipment. So happy with RCN right now. Will probably wear off, but for now? Saving almost $60 per month AND having a more awesome service? is sooooo nice. I wish every town had options for cable service. Competition is indeed a good thing.
llcoolvad: (cold)
Another day off. Spent it somewhat more productively than the last few. First up was the cable guy; took him a while, but he finally got RCN up and running and I put the Comcast equipment all away in a box to bring back to them. Next up, did some errands for mom, mostly involving lottery tickets and money. Came home, and Brian and I managed to get our acts together and get out to run a few errands of our own. Got some BBQ for dinner, then put out all the trash and recycling. Huge amount of recycling this week, all the Christmas wrapping, shipping boxes, etc., so finally the kitchen is back to semi-normal and doesn't look like some trash hoarder is squatting here. Poor cable guy, was probably appalled.

I spent the rest of the night sorting out my shiny new RCN-supplied Tivo. It's pretty nifty, and I can network it with the one I already own to move shows between the two. Maybe now Brian and I will get to actually watch some of the stuff I record for us.

Tomorrow is my scheduled fun day with Patrick. Not sure what we'll be doing yet, but it will be fun! Saturday night we're all heading over to Stephen and Val's for dinner, and Friday (the Eve) I think B and I are going to a party. So much social stuff I might just burst!

OK. Now I need to get the bedroom under control so I can go to bed at some point tonight. Oh, and I should probably log in to see if I need to work tomorrow!

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