Names

Sunday, September 24th, 2017 00:04
zhelana: (original - canoe)
[personal profile] zhelana
What would you name your kids if you have any?

Astrid May for a girl, I don't know about a boy. Kevin likes the name Astrid, and I do too, but it's really his choice. May is my middle name, my mother's middle name, my grandmother's middle name, and my great-grandmother's middle name. So it's really important to me to keep that.


the rest )

90F - 64F : Sunny

Saturday, September 23rd, 2017 23:33
zhelana: (Original - Something Fishy)
[personal profile] zhelana
I woke up just in time to eat breakfast before I had to leave. Today's adventure was the zoo event. I got to the volunteer check in table and they sent me to the room where the mascots would be dressing so I could guide around a mascot. I waited until an hour after my shift started, and the guy for the flamingo costume never showed up, so I went to get Sarah, who told me to just go in and enjoy the event. I talked to one of the docents somewhat about the elephants and their plans to expand the elephant area and maybe get a bull so they can have baby elephants. This led into talking about pregnant Qinu the beluga at Georgia Aquarium.

There were stations to get wine, beer, and food all over the zoo. I wound up getting one cup of sparkling mango wine, and then eating the food. It was good. I couldn't eat two of the things because they had seafood, but I got some steak, and a piece of a taco and some donuts. I discovered that it's impossible to see the gorillas with wheels - there just isn't a ramp onto the observation platform. So that made me sad, especially as there was someone with a microphone talking about gorillas up there, and I would have liked to listen.

I wound up watching the elephants for a long time, and the sun bears, and the pandas. The sunbears were clearly distressed that it was past time for them to be off exhibit and behind the scenes doing whatever they do there. They were pacing in front of the exit to their exhibit and occasionally jumping up on it like "let me in!" I kind of understand - it was 90F and they're black bears. But they're from Malaysia, certainly they should be used to hot weather? The tortoises were off exhibit with a sign that said "even Atlanta can be cold to a tropical animal. Check us out starting in late spring" - did I mention it was 90F out? Certainly that's not too cold for anything that has an outdoor enclosure in Atlanta?

I started driving home, and Kevin called to tell me he'd ordered me dinner from someplace we'd never eaten at before. So, I came home to dinner, and when I answered the door, the dog ran past me, and jumped on the guy with the food. He started jumping and screaming, which of course makes the dogs think he wants to play, so they're jumping and barking too. I collect my dogs and my food, and start to close the door and he's out there with his pants leg pulled up yelling "ma'am, ma'am!" so I peek out the door and he says "do you have the peppers?" I have absolutely no idea what he's talking about and he keeps gesturing to his leg asking for peppers. I finally say, "I have no idea what you want," and he says, "fine then I'll call the cops!" Since there was not a mark on his leg anywhere, and I have no idea why he wants peppers unless maybe he wants me to pepper spray my dogs, I tell him, "you do that then," and kick the door closed. Why do people who are afraid of dogs take jobs as delivery drivers? Honestly, get a job as a cook or something where you don't have to interact with people or dogs if you're afraid of dogs. Anyway, I'm seriously stressed out because I don't want him to report my dogs to the police.

Strange Days

Saturday, September 23rd, 2017 22:22
izmeina: curly green leaf spiral (spiral)
[personal profile] izmeina
September is one of the most beautiful months of the year here in Dursleyville. It’s real Goldilocks weather. Not too hot and not too cold but just right. An added attraction is the wildflowers and weeds blossoming everywhere and driving the birds and bees berserk with all the tasty nectar.

Green and Growing things )

Crush

Saturday, September 23rd, 2017 01:36
zhelana: (Original - Gatlinburg)
[personal profile] zhelana
Write about your first crush. Who was it?

I don't recall ever having a crush on anyone I knew in person, because I seem to have always recognized that that way lay sex, and I wasn't interested. I did have a celebrity crush on Jonathan Brandis, and his character Lucas Wolenczak from seaQuest DSV, which was probably my first and only crush in a way that you'd actually think of as a crush.

the rest )

90F - 66F : Sunny

Saturday, September 23rd, 2017 01:07
zhelana: (original - handbasket)
[personal profile] zhelana
I woke up at 2 this afternoon because Kevin woke me up taking a shower. He was working from home and apparently decided the way to deal with this was to wake up at the moment he had to be at work and then take a shower on his lunch break. We got subs from Jimmy John's which I was able to shove in my mouth just in time to walk out the door.

Stop one was my therapist's office. Traffic made me a little late, but since it was apparently a 60 minute appointment instead of my usual 30 minutes, that was fine. We talked about goals, and talked about writer's block. She basically wanted me to look at what I have accomplished instead of what I haven't accomplished.

I came home and talked to Kevin for half an hour before heading out to my father's house. I got to my father's house a little early and he was in the shower, so I entertained myself with his dog until he was ready to go. Tonight's adventure was the Temptations and 4 Tops concert. Of course it's more like Temptation and 4 Top because only one man survives from each group, and they've filled their ranks with younger men. I thought the concert was alright, but the 4 Tops for some reason were singing everyone else's songs. I mean, I know you could fill an hour with 4 Tops hits, but for some reason they played Mack the Knife, and My Way and several other songs that I didn't even know that weren't their songs. My dad was pretty disappointed, and he wasn't alone - people were leaving the concert in droves. Our entire aisle emptied out before the end of the concert.

I got home at midnight, and talked to Kevin for an hour since the dogs woke him up barking when I walked in the door. I immediately took my meds, as I had forgotten both at lunch and dinner (since I never ate dinner), and I was starting to go into withdrawals. I'm still clenching my jaw and pretty uncomfortable, though it's starting to get better.

Hair

Friday, September 22nd, 2017 00:22
zhelana: (Marvel - Puny God)
[personal profile] zhelana
How do you do your hair/makeup? Why?

It's long and curly. I just brush it. I don't do makeup. Because I really couldn't give a flying fuck.

the rest )

89F - 66F : Late night thunder

Thursday, September 21st, 2017 22:32
zhelana: (X - forever my love)
[personal profile] zhelana
The bad decision train left at 4am, with me too tired to stay up until noon, and with too little sleep available to wake up at 11, so I didn't get to temple this afternoon. I did temporarily wake up at the appropriate time, but then I was like "there's no transliteration in the books and you stumble too much to say the prayers, so you won't get anything out of it anyway, and you'll have to park across the street which will be a hard and painful walk and your back will hurt before you even start standing up to pray. So I talked myself out of it and went to sleep.

Kevin called at 11 and said he was done with work for the day because he has to work Saturday. Then when I woke up at 2 he still wasn't home. Apparently he called Brian and wound up going out to lunch with him, and decided I wouldn't know because I'd be at tmeple, so he didn't tell me he wasn't coming straight home, and I was very nervous by the time he came home. Now he has two days of working from home, plus he gets to get off early on Friday (next Friday I think not this Friday), to make up for the hours he did work today.

We talked a little bit, then I went to Panera to meet Tia and Klepto. I wrote over 1000 words on my Star Trek short stories, and then started reading DW for about half an hour because my brain was just not having any of it. My brain had better get over this not having any of it by November because I'm relying on a successful NaNoWriMo to finish my goals for the year. I think it'll be better when I have a novel I'm writing instead of the short stories. I hope.

Came home, read LJ, read my bat mitzvah portion over again - the first half of it came easier, the second half came harder for some reason, even though I know most of the words in the second half of it. Read my Bible, and generally prepared for the end of the day.

Anyway, Shanah Tova to the Jews, and Happy Mabon to the pagans, happy Friday to the rest of you.


Another Friendzy


happy fall multifandom friending meme!

The story of how I won a battle of wits on the phone

Thursday, September 21st, 2017 21:24
zimena: A cup with a hot drink inside. A heart drawn into the liquid, and the text "Coffee, love?" diagonally across the pic. (Misc - Coffee)
[personal profile] zimena
So, the TV/net provider change is not going to happen. The new (or actually new-old) company tried to cheat me before I had even properly agreed the switch. First, they told me that switching would take 4-7 days, then I got a mail saying it could take up to 4 weeks.

Yeah, right...

Also, when I called them to inform them about the decision not to switch, they gave me an absolute slimeball of a guy on the phone. Seriously, he was so nice that the grease was practically dripping from his voice. On the surface, he was totally fine with the cancellation, but in fact I could feel how he was looking for some way to force me to switch. Well, in the end he was trying to tell me that it was him being nice to let me cancel the order (which had not even gone through completely by the time I called, so it's not like there was anything to cancel, really).

And I was like: "Well, it's my legal right to rethink the decision, so it's not about being nice."

... and suddenly he got really meek and admitted that yes, I was right, and everything is now cancelled and fine.

I know my consumer rights. So, there!

Mmmmmm coffee scented candle love

Thursday, September 21st, 2017 09:57
christina_maria: (Coffee and a Book)
[personal profile] christina_maria
 Gah!! This candle smells soooo yummy.😍😍 I love it! I haven’t even lit it yet, and it smells amazing.

Of course… that it smells so yum means they’ve totally sold out for now at Bath & Body Works online shop.
 
I also have one now called ‘Hot Cocoa and Cream’ that smells yummy as well, but in a baked brownie way almost. It too is sold out now.  harumph.
 
 
So there will be no stocking up on them for this lady, dang it. β˜• I hope they at least restock a few times before it gets discontinued.  I would totally buy a couple more to save for later.
Honestly, I wish they’d stop discontinuing the scents I love. *lol*
 
When they occasionally do bring back a discontinued one I find it never really smells quite the same though. I’m not sure if it’s a change in ingredients, or in the amount of scent they use the second time round when bringing a scent back. Never quite the same candle though.
 
 
I do still have their yummy Italy Espresso Cafe candle (that came out a year or so back).
It had sold out and then got discontinued (naturally) … and so, even though I love how yummy it smells, I use it very sparingly so I can have it longer.
 
 
I tell you what though.
It’ll be a sad candle day when I finally use up the Italy Espresso candle, but at least I have the Coffee one and Cocoa one to take it’s place now.
 
 
It smells so good.

I no longer get the hang of Thursdays

Thursday, September 21st, 2017 12:40
hollymath: (Default)
[personal profile] hollymath
Had my passport interview today. Everyone told me it was fine and normal but I thought it was weird and intrusive. How many of your bedrooms look onto your back garden? Where did your parents go on their honeymoon? But it was done quickly and kindly, by a big guy with amazing facial hair and who had actually heard of Minnesota because he's an American-football player.

The worst thing about it was that we had to go all the way to Salford for it, which took ages. I turned out to also need to go back to the university because you can't sign up for language classes online, you have to go in person to the place I was twice yesterday where no one told me this. (I presume it's because they need to check the level people are at if they want to do anything other than beginner's level in their language, because there was a lot of that happening. But surely abject beginners should be able to apply with the system we have to use to do everything else?) But I filled out the form so hopefully that's done.

Which means all my bureaucracy should be done that can be done for now, which is good as all of tomorrow will be taken up with volunteer training at Manchester Museum (which is just a different kind of in-person bureaucracy, as little or none of it will be relevant to my role).

And I had a smear test today, and that's all this morning, so frankly not only am I done with today, but I think I need a medal.

For future reference, though, having a lot of local friends means a lot of them share the same doctor's surgery, and I'd heard a lot of good things about the new nurse who frankly could hardly have been worse than the old one. And she lived up to everything I'd heard about her; she didn't mention my weight, even though she did mention my blood pressure a lot which is fair enough as it was high when she checked it. She even took my height and weight which I know will be for bullshit BMI things the NHS makes them do, but while she said "Five four" as she read my height off the thingy, she then looked at the scale and said "weight...[mumbly mumble]" like she was just reminding herself long enough to go write it down (which is exactly what she was doing) so far from making a big deal of it she ensured I didn't know it at all which is the best thing for my mental health.

And when she asked if I wanted a sexual health screening done at the same time I said it was a good idea because I have two partners but it's okay and they know about each other and etc., she actually said "Oh, so you're poly?" Which left me really taken aback! I've never had a health professional know the word before. And she asked me if the partners were "male, female or other" so didn't assume sexuality or binary gender, which made me happy.

101 Update

Thursday, September 21st, 2017 00:10
zhelana: (seaQuest - Remember when)
[personal profile] zhelana
Progress This Week

Go to 30 meetings - Went to a dance practice tonight

Post 100 situations prompts to AO3 - Another one is posted.

Fill a second 100 situations with a different fandom - Wrote 2 more prompts

Learn 30 new things through wikipedia - I learned about Brezhnev's legacy.

Take golf lessons - one more week in the books.

Listen to 90 other podcasts - I listened to an episode of Backstory on myths and legends in American history.

Read the entire Bible - Still in 2 Kings

2 people

Thursday, September 21st, 2017 00:08
zhelana: (original - alone)
[personal profile] zhelana
Two people you want to be with right now.

Dylan and Yves. I guess one of those is actually possible, if I call and make some time.

the rest )

92F - 65F : Sunny

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017 23:19
zhelana: (seaQuest - cocky)
[personal profile] zhelana
I woke up inexplicably at 8 this morning. Despite this, I did not go to PSWC. I was pretty lazy until time to go to my dentist appointment. I spent some more time in bed, and on the internet. Then I went to the dentist. It was not as horrible this time as last time. At least, I didn't leave bleeding and crying. I set up a return appointment, and an appointment with the actual dentist (the VA one person does cleanings and another person does X-rays and other stuff). Every time I go in this woman "discovers" cement on my teeth from my braces that I had 20 years ago. And tries to scrape it off, each time unsuccessfully, but with lots of the scraper skipping off of it and going into my gums.

Also, I really want to know what the receptionist's job is there though because when I asked him to check me in he's like "check in at the automatic kiosk" and when I asked him to check me out he's like "check out is around the corner" So what the fuck is your job dude? You're working awfully hard at not working there.

If I had had brains, I would have brought my laptop and went to a coffee shop, but I don't have brains so I came all the way home, and sat online for an hour then talked to Kevin for an hour, then went back to Decatur to go to the SCA meeting. There was a business meeting at the beginning of the meeting, where we talked about upcoming events, most of which I am not going to. I don't think I'm going to any more events this year, actually. I may change my mind and go to Red Tower in 2 weeks, but they aren't having any classes, and I don't think I can shoot long enough to make that a whole day activity. So, I don't really know what I'd do with myself.

After the meeting we had some dancing. I danced with Ximon, and Justina danced with the dance Mistress, but I don't remember her name. Also this cute little 3 year old girl danced with Justina and they were adorable. The list of dances for 4 people is small, and I think we did most of them.

Then we went out to dinner at Imperial, where I had a burger and Mac and Cheese. Never again with that mac and cheese. The top was burned, and I made the mistake of stirring it so the burned pieces mixed in with the good pieces, and it was just disgusting. I picked at Deborah's french fries, which were better. We talked about travel, and the military, and I'm not really a fan of discussing the military. It's a thing that happened, and I'm glad it did, but I'd rather not talk about it. They were talking about family members who refused to talk about military service though, and I was like "sounds about right!" For what it's worth, my grandfather, who was a mine sweeper in north Africa never spoke about it either. Until he got Alzheimer's and thought he was living it.

L'Shanah Tova, y'all.

17/365

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017 18:02
catness: (playful)
[personal profile] catness
#17. What does your joy look like today?

Specifically today: rewriting a part of my game engine from a homebrew text format with a Perl script parsing it to C++ code into the YAML format with a Python parser.

The game code is tightly integrated with C++ (e.g. the callbacks are written in regular C++, same as Unity's callbacks are written in C#), but there are many common tasks, like initializing rooms and objects, which would be too annoying without simplification. Right now, I have a plain text "game configuration file", which basically contains all the info split over a zillion of forms in GUI-based game development systems; but here, you can see everything at a glance, and edit it all in one place, in a regular text editor.

I've developed a custom text format because JSON, XML and alike are human-unfriendly, due to the amount of markup. But recently I've discovered YAML - a popular standard for human-readable data, and it looks almost the same as mine! YAML's drawback is the usage of indentation for syntax, but I'm already used to Python, so it's a small sacrifice for huge benefits, such as a YAML parser already supported by all major scripting languages.

I could've stayed with Perl, but lately I'm into Python, because it's so neat and pleasant to work with. Especially upon discovering the heredoc syntax for templates, perfect for my purposes. (I guess there's no end of learning). I'm still on the stage of code refactoring - technically, there's no new functionality besides cleaning up some odds and ends - but the parser is already looking SO MUCH MORE ELEGANT and user-friendly.

Abbreviated freshers' week

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017 15:48
hollymath: (Default)
[personal profile] hollymath
Somehow all my freshers' week stuff was mostly crammed into three days, which is kind of nice since I'm done with it now, which gives me time for volunteering orientation, a passport interview, a doctor's appointment, and a weekend of being in Yorkshire because of Thought Bubble.

Overall it's gone pretty well. I was nervous of feeling out of place but I really haven't. Everyone's been nice and neither I nor anyone else has called attention to me being twice their age (though I have felt it, especially since I keep coming home and taking naps, and they've been going out every night according to scraps of overheard conversation).

I've done all the bureaucracy: enrolled on everything (except my language, working on that), got my student card, met my advisor, peppered my department's admin with questions...I've been to welcome talks and figured out where some of the rooms in the rabbit warren that is the building I'll be spending most of my time in.

I've made a friend! I went to this divisional "party" thing on Monday, which is where you stand in an echoy room with a bunch of other people standing inexplicably close together. This was on Monday so I was at my most self-conscious and sure no one would talk to me, but she just walked right up and did. She's called Kitty...well, she's not because she's Chinese and can't expect people to say her name. But she told it to me, Weijia, and I said it back to her and she said my pronunciation was good but I can't remember it now! She turned up in the group meeting with our advisor today, and we were happy to see each other.

I had my introductory meeting with disability services yesterday, too. Which was great, but kind of weird. I left it convinced that if I'd had even half that support when I first went to college, I wouldn't have to be trying again now. At the time I was still firmly of the belief that I wasn't mentally ill, I was just rubbish. So much of that could have been different.

But then if it was I might not have written so much that Andrew saw on LiveJournal and he wouldn't have been able to identify with me as much as he did and maybe wouldn't have wanted to talk to me and I certainly wouldn't have visited him here if my life had stayed on the track it was supposed to be on. Things would be so different down the other leg of the trousers of time that it doesn't bear thinking about.

too much drama

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017 09:55
jenni_blog: (Default)
[personal profile] jenni_blog
Aaarrrghh...I am getting too old for this.

I'm so verklempt it's almost too hard to write this post.

As you know my daughter, her husband and their two little kids ages 7 and 4 moved in with us. We did it because she was having issues at their previous rented house and she didn't want the kids to attend the school in that area anymore. There was no problem with the school per se but it was too far away and a terrible neighbour of hers works there so she was worried that this person might behave in a negative way towards her children.

We wanted them to be able to save up the down payment for a house of their own and that's why we changed everything in our lives so we could accommodate them here.

I don't want this to be a long story and I know that there must always be a period of adjustment in which all parties must strive to make everything run smoothly, but Holy Hannah, did the last two or three weeks have to be so hard?

I am not getting any younger! There's only so much drama and stress I can take!

My daughter is never satisfied. This stems from her chronic depression I know, which she is managing fairly well now, but I remember when she was about eleven I noticed that she just didn't seem happy and tried to explain to her that nothing in life was ever going to be perfect and she would have to try to find the things that did make her feel somewhat good and try to always keep those things with her or around her and try to avoid the things that sent her into a downward spiral.

So the first day at the new school here went well for the 7-year-old boy, but was a disaster for the 4-year-old girl entering junior kindergarten. She threw a tantrum and bit the vice principal when they tried to restrain her. But she is not a biter! That was the first time she ever did that! We were shocked and horrified when we heard about it.

So long story short, my daughter fell out with the JK teacher, had words with her and demanded a transfer to another class. But when she found out all four JK classes were full at 30 kids each, she demanded a transfer to another school! But guess what? All three other schools in the area were also full!

The teacher had suggested to Olivia (my daughter) that there might be something wrong with Jessica - she dared to suggest that she might be "on the spectrum" - and that's a touchy subject with Olivia since Sean was diagnosed with mild autism ten years ago and was transferred into a Special Ed class. Sean seems so normal these days that we are beginning to wonder if there has been too much of a rush to judgement in naming certain kids to be "on the spectrum" over the past several years. It seems to have become somewhat of a trend now. Either that or perhaps certain kids can just grow out of their autism. Sean is going to be 15 soon and he is just like any other boy his age.

So Olivia kept Jessica home for the rest of the week and then asked me to take her to school beginning the week after that, while she took her son to his Grade 2 class.

*sigh*

Of course I caved, being me and wanting to keep the peace, so I took Jessica to her JK class, soothed her while she cried and said she didn't want to go (she wasn't the only one - there were two other little boys who were screaming their lungs out with resistance), apologized to the teacher for what my daughter had said to her, and everything actually worked out OK! One thing - I would never want to be a JK teacher - they are most certainly not paid enough for the work they do and the shit they have to put up with (sometimes literally) every working day.

Besides the teacher there are two ECE's and one teacher's assistant but it doesn't seem enough for a class of 30 little kids!

But this week so far, Jessica has been eager to go to school every day, has made friends and is enjoying everything about it there. We were speaking to the principal and he told us that this class and this teacher were the best ones in the school and very strong advocates for the kids themselves. Good to know.

One problem solved, but there are others. However, I don't want to write about them right now because I'm exhausted! It's hard to find time to do much of anything else and to top it off it's been unseasonably warm here and it's uncomfortable being sweaty ALL the time!

I want to write more, there are stories I still need to finish, etc., etc. but I find I have so much less "me" time than ever before. Am I being selfish? But I do want to do everything I can to help out my kids, without making them become too dependent on me at the same time.

What are you reading Wednesday?

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017 00:14
zhelana: (Firefly - girls)
[personal profile] zhelana
What have you just finished reading?

The Mathews Men: Seven Brothers and the War Against Hitler's U-boats by William Gerouxby - I don't understand why this book was called seven brothers, Mathews is a county, not a family, and the book was about a much larger segment of society than seven brothers. Nonetheless, it was a fascinating look at a mostly forgotten part of WWII, and men who had a higher mortality rate than every military branch except the marines.


What are you reading?

One Way or Another by Annette Laing - No progress this week

The Jews of Khazaria by Kevin Alan Brook - I wonder if part of the reason we have so little information about these people is that they competed with the Russians, and eventually, the Russians won? I'm only 28% of the way through this book, which is surprising because he never references the idea that he'll introduce more evidence after chapter 8 and I'm already on chapter 6.

2 Kings - There's a lot of murder and death going on. I think it's succession wars?

Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink - This book is more oriented towards businesses than I was expecting. It's still interesting, because it talks about ways to motivate people and stuff, but I am not the intended audience.

Dream Date

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017 00:03
zhelana: (original - aliens)
[personal profile] zhelana
What would your dream date be like?

I would go to a beach and talk and then go on a dinner cruise and see dolphins jumping while we ate good food.

the rest )

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