howeverbrief: (Smile)
I called one of my coworkers "Aurora" today. I told her immediately that this was a compliment because my best friend's name is Aurora. Not sure if she believed me or not, but she said she liked that name. (My coworker's name is Doris. Not even close to Aurora, by the way.)

Damn, I'm tired. I've worked every day since the 12th. Working tomorrow, the next day and next week too. I'm waiting for laundry to dry so I can go to bed. Ah, oh well. What do you do, right?
howeverbrief: (Winter)
Man, it's been over two weeks since we've returned from Iceland, and I haven't been able to come back and write about it yet. It seems like it's been one thing after another.

First off, jet-lag totally kicked my butt when I went back to work. Then we went to Grass Valley/Nevada City for Labor Day weekend to celebrate our third anniversary early, which was very nice until I got either massive food poisoning from an iffy Indian buffet we visited or had the flu coming on because I was suddenly unable to keep anything in my system. Before that, we had scheduled painting for this week because it's something I had been wanting to do forever, so we had to move furniture for them when we got home, still really sick. I stayed home sick Tuesday when they started too, so that turned out to not be as restful as advertised. Then between moving furniture around the next two nights and making it back to work Wednesday and Thursday to try to pull together training materials for the new hire I have starting September 19th, I realized yesterday that I'm still sick. I came home and passed out for five hours, and good lord where does the time go?

Poor Mike is sick too, though I'm glad he got to skip the part where absolutely nothing stays in his system. We're both feeling weird head congestion more than stomach issues now, so not sure if that's a continuation of what we had or a new illness, but I'm hoping we can both kick whatever it is this weekend since he has to go to Arkansas for a week-long training at Tyson University. (Yep, Mike gets to go to chicken school. Oo, fancy!) Anyway, I'd mostly like to get rid of this constant ringing in my ear and exhaustion/inability to concentrate more than anything else because I have a ton to do next week given that I lost two days of this week to weird mystery illness. Hopefully I'll be back to writing in some capacity before I forget all the fun little details of our trip, but I guess that's life crowding back in if not. You never get sick when it's convenient, right? Oh well. Fingers crossed I'll be back to normal soon enough anyway.
howeverbrief: (Temp)
Hello, we have returned. We got back from Iceland at midnight Wednesday actually, but since there's a seven-hour time difference (and Mike's been sick on top of it with a cold he got in the last days we were there), we've both been struggling to get back to some kind of normal in the past four days. I always tend to forget just how disorienting and weird jet-lag is until I experience it again. It was especially jarring waking up that first night and seeing Icelandic mountains in my bedroom instead of knowing where I was, but it gets better day by day. Soon we won't notice it at all.

It has been somewhat bittersweet being back. While there were definitely some fiascos, really the trip as a whole was very nice and different from anything we've experienced so far. I plan on going into details about the trip soon, but for now I'm mostly trying not to be bummed out about having to go back to work. I'm pretty sure this is the longest time in the five and a half years I've worked for the state that I've been away (not counting surgeries, but even then, maybe not), and it feels very surreal. Usually I'm more than ready to get back and buckle down into work, but this has been more of a break, I suppose.

I think part of it is the very real prospect of session starting again in February, and I have no more set time off between now and then. Well, that and needing to get some house repairs done before session comes (and hopefully succeeding in that because winter's coming up fairly quickly and I feel like we're running out of time again). I'm also not sure what's going to happen in the next year (or really what I even want to happen in the next year), so that's kind of terrifying. So it goes, the never-ending song of the sort-of adult I am, I guess. I'd much rather be in Iceland, where our only care at night was planning the next day's driving and wondering if the shower was going to be quite as bad as the previous place we stayed at, but I digress. It's okay. If not, it's going to be okay.

Anyway, Iceland posts coming soon.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
I had a dream a few nights ago that I interviewed for a promotion at my work. They told me I got the job, so I was super excited. I went into my new larger office and had no idea really what to do. I sat at my desk and shuffled papers around trying to figure it out. I left my office for a minute, and when I returned, my friend [livejournal.com profile] verypretty was sitting at my desk and doing the work like a champ. I was told I had actually been demoted and was now her assistant. The next day she turned into my old boss, and the office turned into my current office, and I wanted to go back home and cry.

(My old boss is great. My friend Aurora is great. Dream world is just weird, demoralizing and manifesting my imposter syndrome that crops up every now and then. Booooo.)

Work has been pretty dull lately. My brain has a lot of time to wander, and it's not always to good places. I found myself sleepily giving myself a pep talk the other day about, "Hey, what if you actually took the time and gave it your all to writing? What if you looked over some of the short stories you started back in college and actually tried to make them into something?"

It was enough to wake me up in that moment, but knowing me, I won't actually do that. It's funny it came up at all, really, since I don't tend to like writing fiction much anymore. I liked the creative writing classes I took, but nothing really seemed to stick in terms of lasting passion. If I write fiction at all these days, it's in the form of poetry because I find I like telling really small stories and stringing together pieces and phrases rather than writing long form. I would still like to write a non-fiction book (and have several ideas for research projects), but I don't know. I'd like to think that this is just my aesthetic, but really, it's probably more of a convenient excuse because I'm impatient and don't want to devote the time I would need to make it happen. There are a million different distractions and only so much time and blah blah blah. So it goes, I guess.

I have figured out I can take notes on my phone, though, so I've been doing that instead of writing all over post-its and hoping I don't lose them. (Yes, I know. Welcome to the 21st century.) We'll see if anything comes from it.

EDIT: Wait, hold up. This is better than everything I just said.
howeverbrief: (Temp)
I took the day off today to take Olive to the vet. It really didn't take that long and I could've easily gone back to work, but at the time I requested it at work, I had no time off in sight and really wanted at least something to look forward to since we were still stuck in codification hell. This was before I asked for the time off to go to Vegas weekend before last, and I must say, it's a little weird to have a random Tuesday off.

Anyway, it's been a nice enough day. I slept in a little bit then got up to exercise to an older DVD I have that took 45 minutes of my day and kicked my ass. I had semi-planned on getting the bloodwork my doctor requested during my appointment last Monday, but I realized pretty quickly after that that I wasn't going to be able to continue fasting and be able to stay upright. I'll have to figure out another time to do that now. Yay, being an adult.

We took Olive to the vet after that, and she was really vocal on the way to the office. Otherwise, there's not much to report. She was there for a recheck on her bloodwork to see if the medication she's on has brought her thyroid under control enough for her to have surgery to remove the mass from her leg (which has grown a little bit but doesn't really concern the vet?) and to fix her teeth. We'll find out the results tomorrow. She hasn't lost weight, though, so hopefully it will work out.

After the appointment, Mike took me to breakfast (pupusas for the win) and then got ready to go because he has yet another food show to do, this time in Livermore woo. He's supposed to have a lot of customers there, though, so he should get a lot of followup business out of it (even though he's semi-drowning in followups from his last show). Hopefully it's not too painful, though.

Other than that, I took a long walk, messed around on the internet, and started a knitting project while watching too much TV, so not a very productive day. Hey, if you're going to ditch work for a vet appointment, might as well. I'll get to the bills tomorrow or something.

Some other recent happenings worth noting:
My brother got a new job! He's been very miserable at his current work since new management took over, and his last day there is this Friday. I found out he is going to do part-time work there to help with the transition while working 40 hours a week at the new gig, though, which I think is way too much given the way they've treated him. He's got to figure that out, though.

On a similar note, my younger sister has a few job interviews this week since her job with the university is not being renewed. Fingers crossed those go well. I wish I could say the same for my older sister, but that's neither here nor there.

We went to a show on Friday evening: Alton Brown Live: Eat Your Science Tour
It was fun! He did three different segments: Food God (on what he would do if he were Food God, like banning children's menus for example), Pick Your Poison (where an unlucky volunteer from the audience got to test Alton's theory on the best cocktails being three ingredients and how to use science to improve the ensuing rum-brandy-pixie sticks cocktail that ensued from the random nature of choosing the ingredients slot machine style), and Popcorn (where another unlucky volunteer helped build a giant working model of popcorn that popped all over her as well as showed off his giant popcorn maker that makes 4 bushels of popcorn at once). He also sang several songs, pronounced Nevada wrong, and was very, very snarky. Haha. It was a good time. My brother also went to the show, so we saw him afterward. He was convinced the volunteers from the audience were plants, but I wasn't so sure, considering how hard Alton was on them. Also, Alton had some saltier jokes and more of an adult edge to him that was different from his "Good Eats" show though the show was overall kid friendly. Very funny.

My in-laws 50th anniversary is this September. Need to figure out what were doing for that. Hmm... It still kind of boggles my mind that they were married the day before my parents were (11 years before that too, but just an odd coincidence). Our anniversary is very close by too, but we had a little bit more say in that: September 7th is ours. September 9th is Mike's parents. September 10th is my parents. September is, of course, a popular month for weddings, but it's still kind of nuts. That's a long time to be married, too.

But uh, I guess I should try to wind down and get ready for bed.
howeverbrief: (Skull)
I had a dream a few nights ago that woke me from a very deep sleep. What is it about people who have been gone ten years or more? How do they pop back in every once in a while and set the whole town ablaze only to vanish again? I don't even know what you look like anymore. I am long over all this. I am over wanting to mumble apologies and have them misunderstood, igniting the pain all over again, but that's what I do in my dreams. I face it without actually doing anything. It's anxiety I neither want nor need. We were never good enough together anyway.

I am worried about the cat again. She's sneezing. It is getting harder to get her to take the steroids, which yes, I wouldn't want to take either if I were her, but come on. Her eating seems to have slowed, and she puked while eating a little while ago. I'm sure it's nothing, but I am frightened anyway. We shall see.

Mike is out of town again. He was in Livermore Sunday night through Tuesday night for his monthly meeting at his home office. Tomorrow he has a food presentation he was asked to help with in Sacramento, and he has to get up really early. He is in another chat window I have open, but I am not being very good company right now. I don't know why I can't just... be okay, I guess.

Work is okay. Frustrating in certain ways. Still waiting for the work that's going to push us over the edge in this codification project. Still not quite getting anything else done except in fits and waves whenever there's a panic. This has been going on for too long, but apparently it shows no signs of stopping. There has to be an end. We have other things we need to do in the interim before session work arrives again sometime in the fall. We have no control, though. I think too damn much. I need to let it go.

I'm not making any sense really, stringing together words for the sake of it. Sorry. I'm feeling kind of down, and this isn't really helping. I'll try again later. Maybe tomorrow will be better.

Because in your heart, it's loud. Oh...
howeverbrief: (Temp)
Mike has ankle surgery tomorrow. We have to be there at 6:00 a.m. I'm super not looking forward to the early morning. My mom is already in Reno and has plans to sit with me for the hour it will take to do the surgery and the other hour it will take until he's ready to go home. Otherwise, uh, I dunno. Mike has never had surgery before, and I'm not sure how anesthesia will affect him. I have plans to stay with him for the recommended 24-hour-period, but beyond that is touch and go. Work is ramping up, and it's hard to be away from it (though I made a pretty dumb mistake this afternoon that I'm still kind of miffed at myself for). It is what it is, and I don't have anything remarkable to say about anything really. I mostly thought about posting about it on facebook but realized I didn't want my whole friends list to know the particulars. (If Mike posted about it, it would be different, but he hasn't either.) I wanted to record it, but I didn't want to answer particulars from the peanut gallery. Kind thoughts are still very much appreciated, though.

I guess I'm trying not to think about it because if I do, I get nervous and worried. When they scheduled the surgery, the doctor said it wasn't urgent but if they didn't go in and realign his ankle with a plate and screws (and depending on what they find, turn another bone around if necessary), he might be worse off in the long run. Mike keeps saying he feels like if he just stayed off of it for a while, it would be fine. Sigh. Surgery is surgery, though, and it's scary to think about what-ifs. Have I always been this ridiculous about possibilities and the unknown? Who am I kidding asking that question anyway?

It's hard. Not going to lie. I'm doing my best, but I'm not even really very good at that. I've retreated to the guest room because I've been sleeping worse than normal lately, and that's not good for anyone. He never seems to get comfortable. Hopefully the surgery will fix that. Either way, he has to be non-weight-bearing for six weeks, and with my work where it is, I'm not going to be home all that much. More than session because it will be a fixed schedule, but still less than the usual shifts. His work allows him to work from home, so that currently doesn't seem to be an issue, though he hasn't been doing much of that either.

I'm a little stressed out, and I'm not sure what to look forward to. That's life though, I guess. Got to be present in the muck sometimes in order to get out of it or something. Metaphors are failing me. I should probably turn in before it's 4:00 in the morning and time to wake up again, yeah? Ugh. Oh well. Hopefully Mike gets through it all okay and we patch up the rest in post. Whatever that means. I'd like to have at least one summer that doesn't end up like this, but we'll see how it goes.

I'm glad August is almost over anyway. Stupid August. No one likes you.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
[Error: unknown template qotd]Honestly, I didn't have many plans at the start of the year beyond "make it through session." Well, that and don't break any more body parts, but that's a given considering how much my foot still hurts and reminds me when storms are coming.

It's been a big year. It was the start of my first cycle as supervisor handling eight proofreaders during the legislative session, and it wasn't all that easy. I think I did a fairly good job for having replaced my boss, who did the job for ten years plus and saw a lot of changes to her job in that time. I'm not sure if it would have been possible for her to convey to me just how many facets there are to supervising. Some I picked up from watching her, but a lot of it has been a steep learning curve, especially when it comes to relations between my people. I mean, I knew handling relationships between people would be part of the job, but I had no idea how big of a percentage and how unprepared I'd be for some of the scenarios I've run across.

Suffice it to say I'm still learning and will probably never fully figure it out.

It's been stressful and hard on Mike as well, considering he only got to experience session stress from a few states away last time, and I know it can't have been easy to deal with my freaking out about hours and deadlines and everything else that goes along with trying to keep up with the legislature, not to mention our various health problems and just general adjustments that go along with newer marriages and life. So far, he's helped me immensely, and I don't remember how I got through it without him the last two times. He's such a sweetheart, and thought he has his own work issues, I'm pretty sure he's helped me out far more than I've helped him. I'm very lucky he sticks around sometimes.

It's been difficult to see my body deteriorate, though. I've recently become more and more aware of how weak my physique is compared to before I broke my foot. At that point, I was just starting to see the effects of less exercise due to being a newly wed and lazier specimen in general, but now I'm definitely feeling like I'm not where I want to be physically. I'm trying to start my old exercise routine before work again, but it is challenging to get up earlier in the morning not to mention we'll be going back on overtime soon to do codification and I'll have much less time to figure it out then. Sigh.

Work/life balance has become rougher to figure out. I wouldn't trade my life with Mike for anything I had before, but it is hard to see what's coming and plan for the future. Certain days I feel like I have all the time in the world to do what we want to do, and other times I feel my biological clock ticking. I don't know when I'll be ready. I don't know if there's a right time to do anything, really. I do know we'd make anything work, but there are many more unknowns that I can't seem to square with myself right now. I suppose there's no harm in leaving it alone until things settle into whatever they're going to settle into. If there is, I won't know until later anyway.

Most of my life can be summed up in this sentence anyway: "I needn't have worried." This seems to become more true the more I repeat it to myself after particularly stressful events that turned out to not be so bad, so... Why worry about it now? I needn't have worried. It'll work out and be okay.

Ongoing

Jul. 6th, 2015 10:31 pm
howeverbrief: (Skull)
I had a dream the other night that I woke up and fell going down stairs in slow motion. In a daze, I heard the front door rattling. As I crawled toward it, a strange man broke the lock and started walking through the door. I tried shouting at him to get out and asking why he was there, but my voice was too weak and sleepy. Then I woke up.

I've been sleeping pretty badly. Don't know why. My dad put up the curtain rod in the master bedroom weekend before last, and my mom kindly hemmed the curtains we found online (because no one in this town sells the exact size we need, of course). Apparently, I just get to wake up at 5ish most mornings regardless. Well, if I'm lucky it's only one time a night. Next on the "try" board is reducing the dose of OTC allergy medicine I take, drinking less water before bed, praying to the voodoo gods, sacrificing a goat... Okay, only some of those. Maybe I'll figure out what the heck is going on soon. Probably not.

The 4th of July was pretty nice-- just hung out in Reno with my sister, her friend from work, my brother, my mom and Mike. We ate too much, played Uno early in the afternoon then Cards Against Humanity later while waiting for fireworks. My mom sat at the table and listened during that game, which was awkward at times, especially when one of the answers ended up being "The primal ball-slapping sex your parents are having this second." (I think my sister played that on my brother, which kind of makes it worse. He also didn't appreciate being played the "Motherfucking Sorcerer" card either and refused to read it out loud. Hahaha.) She said something like, "I can see how this game could be fun." Oh, sorry, Mom. Oh well.

Ah, not much else happening. I need to train people again tomorrow, which I'm not looking forward to but will be fairly easy. Past Fiona did most of the work for me already, and I just have to do the talking and explaining part now. Meh.

BUT we just have to make it to Friday. We're leaving for Vermont early Saturday, and that'll be nice. Just have to make it to the other coast and semi-isolated cabin in the woods and yes.

Okay. My stomach is having a full on hatefest at the moment, which has interrupted this post several times already, so I'll stop here for now.
howeverbrief: (Winter)
Me, after looking at an advertisement on the movie marquee: Blood drive is a terrible name for a movie. Wait, that's not what that is.
Mike: Or it's the best name for a movie. *movie voice* Blood Drive. Donors needed.

Uh... guess you had to be there. I'm having some trouble having the right attitude for work, but I'm too tired to go into it again after telling my tale of woe to several people. Hopefully I can get caught up in the right way soon. Yeah, that's basically all I wanted to say.
howeverbrief: (Temp)
So, uh, hi again. Let's see, I worked fifteen of the last twenty days. I ended up with a random Friday off (unprecedented for session), and this week has been pretty boring so far. Because I had a three-day weekend and barely anything has been going on with work, I've been trying to convince myself to get back into old routines, which really just means starting over at this point.

I used to work out twice a week before work. Well, my broken foot put the kibosh on that for a year, and I've come up with so many excuses for not waking up earlier. (This morning's was, "But I woke up at 3:40 and just got back to sleep!" Super pleasant.) Fitbit's still forcing me to walk 10K steps a day, but I manage to feel physically weak anyway. My foot also still hurts! GRAND!

Other hobbies I used to do on a regular basis I'd like to do
(in no particular order):
Knit
Sew
Read
Paint
Cook
See friends in person

OH, and this. Write, right? Right, right. I used to write constantly, about anything and everything. What happened to that? Why is that question all I seem to write about here? I had this grand plan at the start of the week to write one entry per day all this week, even if I felt like I had nothing to write about, and somehow it's already Tuesday, and I see I haven't written in almost three weeks before that. I kind of feel like nothing is going on even though I know I'm just still tired and busy even though we're doing nothing. Such a weird paradox.

I'm aware this whole thing is pretty boring. I'm pretty sure no one really reads this, and that's okay. Why put it out there then? Well, I'm mostly trying to jar myself into recording some of this again because I used to think about much greater things. I used to have things to say other than, "I'm so tired. I wish I was at home/asleep/not working so much," etc. Yeah, maybe those things were dumb too, but I felt better when I could express some of these thoughts knocking around in my head. So often, I feel unable to grasp my own thoughts these days, so often gone with the passing moment because I can't spend too much time parsing things or I'll forget how to stay upright. I just want to remind myself that I know how to think about ideas that aren't work related, whatever those are. I used to put things together. I used to make things. I know how to do this. I'm just out of practice... or I never really knew how but like to entertain myself with delusions of grandeur. Either way, it's something I'm missing. It's something I want back in my life.

Enough with the excuses, I guess. Well, that and not so much of the self-chastising if I'm not able to make my goals. Start small or at least start somewhere.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
I guess it's hard to explain, the feeling that everyone else is steadily driving down the road, passing telephone pole after telephone pole to some place, any place but here, and you're just standing still hoping that it'll be enough when the time comes to move again. I had a long conversation with myself the other day where I wondered if I was depressed, and I think I figured out that I'm not so much depressed as I don't have enough energy to do much but exist. I asked what I would do if I could do anything at all and not have to worry about money, and I couldn't really think of anything different. I'd write, I suppose. Paint. Try to publish some poetry.

But really, when I think about it, I'd get bored of that after a while and want to go back to work, even if work is a bit too much of my life right now. It's a dream that never goes anywhere. I think the illusion of free time haunts me just because I don't have near enough of it to recharge before I have to kick in the afterburners and run close to on-empty for days at a time. Yeah, I know I don't have it all that bad. It's not for even all that long, and I'm more than halfway through this cycle. I have lots of help, and for the most part, I chose this job and could probably do something else if I really wanted to. Thing is, I get tired of it all too. I get tired of being away from what I care about all the time, feeling like I only accomplish a fraction of what I'd like to and not doing a good job at what I do the vast majority of the time.

I don't know that any of this makes sense, only that it's knocking around in my head. It's Mike and Auntie Moya's birthday today, the day two of my favorite people were born. I didn't do enough for either of them. I talked to Moya, and she mostly said I should be hanging out with Mike. Well, that didn't work too well either. I didn't get home until 6:30, and I've been mostly useless sitting in this chair typing words into the ether. I'm lucky, though. I still get to see them sometimes, and at the end of this, I will hopefully get more time to do what I want. I guess mostly I need to figure out what that is anymore. I seem to have forgotten.
howeverbrief: (Temp)
I thought about poetry today. I used to think about poetry quite a lot, and now it only slips in sometimes when I'm trying not to think too hard about other things. Living in the moment has never been my strong suit, and the so-called walking meditation I attempt when I'm stressed out from working too many hours feels like an exercise in futility some days. I never write anything down. There's only so much you can do on any given day.

This session seems to be taking a lot more out of me than the previous two, probably because of the supervisory component of my day-to-day activities. It feels like wading through quicksand a lot of the time. I'm pretty lucky that I have mostly good workers who show up and do their jobs, but at the same time, it is not a perfect system. Nothing really is. I don't really want to go into details at the moment, though. It doesn't really do anything. Plus, Mike hears enough about it whenever we actually see each other.

20 days on, and two days off. I actually also got Wednesday afternoon off as well, but I find it very hard to relax. I ended up cleaning bathrooms, doing laundry, shopping, reorganizing, going on several walks, sleeping, cleaning cat water bowls, taking apart and reassembling the sinks in the master because mine smells funny (and still does, damn it), and pulling weeds among going out to a few meals and grocery shopping and whatever else I forgot. There always seem to be a million things to do, and it feels like they get compounded when you're away for basically three weeks. Not that I can keep up normally, but it feels especially hard lately, even though I have a lot of good help this time around that I'm very thankful for. (Sorry you're in Livermore, Mike. We'll be back together soon, and hopefully for more than a few hours.)

I don't know. I need a new perspective, I think. We're almost halfway through, and we're headed east in July. Just got to find the motivation to keep going. Just got to keep finding ways to make a fresh start.
howeverbrief: (Winter)
Today I got to give the, "The next two weeks are going to be brutal" speech, and I wasn't exaggerating in the slightest. We have deadlines the next two Mondays, where we basically have to put out the rest of the bills somehow (of which I'm estimating we haven't seen/processed half yet), and I lost all hope of having a weekend for the next couple of weeks on Sunday, when I worked over nine hours. Also, my boss said this might be the worst she's ever seen it, and she's worked there over ten years. WOOOO!

SO yeah, session. If you don't see me for a while (or if I'm very hard to contact), there you go. I already miss being at home with Mike and the cats, and I'm at home. Sigh.

Money, right? Vacation in Vermont. Time off in the future... Think good thoughts for me if you're into that kind of thing. Thanks.
howeverbrief: (Black)
I see the Writer's Block involves vaccination. I rolled my eyes and didn't read the whole thing. My brother and Mike's nephew Alex are both on the autism scale, with my brother leaning more toward what was called Asperger's and Alex leaning more toward very high-functioning autism. I entirely doubt this has anything to do with the fact they were vaccinated, especially given the science that has discredited the initial study that suggested vaccination causes autism. I'm also very glad they both were vaccinated because they are some of the best people I know. They are who they are, autism spectrum or not, and they're also still alive. Autism isn't the enemy, and people shouldn't be scared of it. When it comes to diseases that have been already cured for many years, I'm always going to argue for the cure. I've tried to see the other side's point of view, and I just can't. I think it is dangerous and misinformed at best. If this makes me hypocritical about this particular issue, I don't care.

Last weekend was Valentine's day and our three-year anniversary of the day we met. (It seems both longer and shorter than that somehow.) Mike made dinner on Valentine's day, and we had lunch with my parents on our anniversary so we could spend the evening together as well. It was nice that we had the whole weekend off, even if I had to use some of it to do general maintenance, which is what happens when you don't have too many days off in a row-- stuff like get haircuts and clean house and try to recharge while also spend time with people you don't get to see otherwise. It's a bit hard to manage to be honest, but it works, I guess.

More on Valentine's day: Mike got me this dude (Steggy) because I'm weird and obsessed with dinosaurs lately. Also, heh, something sexy. I got him AIDS and a Jesse, also because I'm weird. (AIDS is forever!) Mike made Oysters Rockefeller and tried and failed to make pizza (frozen and thawed pizza dough is the devil), and I made raspberry claufoutis which turned out pretty tasty (even though Mike still cooks way more than I do).

More on the 15th: Mom is doing pretty well. Her grip is coming back, and since she doesn't have a cast and doesn't have to wear a sling, it's not readily apparent she broke her arm. We had a very nice lunch at Tahoe Ridge Winery (a local winery in Minden that is opening a branch very close to our house soon), and afterward, it was fun to do a little infused olive oil tasting (they have a lot of different olive and balsamic oils). Mike ended up getting basil oil and cinnamon pear balsamic for other cooking adventures. After running more errands, we had dinner and watched Punch Drunk Love because our TV was still broken.

Hmm, what else happened this week? Right, a technician came out and fixed the TV. From what Mike said, the screen and motherboard had to be replaced entirely, and when I came home on Tuesday, the screen stayed on for more than five minutes! Just subtract from that the fact that the colors still get inverted from time to time. Ugh. We're pretty sure that the HD cables are to blame now, but if we replace those and are still having problems, we're going to have a serious talk with Directv, mostly because this has been going on for far too long and we have a bit of a background noise addiction that has been highlighted in recent weeks.

However, we encountered a new problem Wednesday that needed a more immediate fix this weekend. I had noticed that our queen-sized bed, which I've had since I was about 14, has been very squeaky lately. The baseboard has been separating from the sideboard, and I've been pushing them back together in the hopes that they won't break.

You know where I'm going with this.

Mike hopped on the bed Wednesday night, and I noticed that the joint was separated more than usual. I made him get off the bed to check out the situation and see if I could strengthen it somehow, but Mike hopped on it again, and the screws gave and tore right out of the wood, banging that corner of the bed onto the floor. I panicked and called my mom, thinking she might have an idea on how to fix it but to no avail. It's done. We dismantled it, put the pieces in the guest room, and have been sleeping on the mattress on the floor since. We're going to try to find a way to donate the headboard and baseboard somewhere, but we have no way to make it work for us again.

That did give us a chance to upgrade to a king bed with a new mattress yesterday, though. ;) The actual buying of the bed and mattress process wasn't as painful as I thought it would be, but trying to find a comforter set proved to be much more complicated than I thought, maybe because I thought Mike wouldn't care at all but surprised me by giving me lots of input and searching several stores then the internet with me until we found what would work.

What's funny about that is he actually just ordered the set we're going to use as I was typing this, so that's a bit of a ridiculous two-day process over what's basically a blanket and pillows. It's pretty though.

Poor Mike. Sorry you've been stuck in domestic hell lately. We ought to be set up by next Saturday hopefully.

Other than that, Mike's in Livermore for the monthly sales meeting. I worked two hours today. This is mostly babbling without a point. The cat is snoring behind me, and my feet are freezing. So it goes.
howeverbrief: (Smile)
Things I've learned in the past year:

Breaking stuff can happen really quickly, even if you're healthy and have never broken anything like it before.

Stairs are terrifying.

Handicap services are totally helpful when you need them.

Muscle mass is easy to lose and much harder to get back.

You can lose joints in your foot via surgery just so you can walk sometime again.

I used to walk really fast.

People notice a lot more than I give them credit for.

It's possible to have an infection for a long time without realizing what it is.

You can breathe without feeling constantly congested. It just might take surgery.

Also, a carryover from last year: Don't blow your nose after you get your wisdom teeth out. You could cause yourself a rare problem that messes up half your year.

My mother and new family members are very supportive.

Marriage is different than I thought it would be. It's much harder but also more fulfilling in ways I didn't know existed.

I married a decent man.

I have forgotten what it's like to live alone. I'm okay with that.

Sometimes, even though it seems like a diagnosis fits, your cat is just a jerk.

Even if you've been through something multiple times, you can feel totally unprepared for what's ahead.

I thought I had more to say, but I'm going to leave it there. Happy 2015.
howeverbrief: (Temp)
Oh, right. I still have a livejournal. Sorry, guys.

Let's see... This is the first day I've "stayed home" since December 13th. (Stayed home is in quotation marks because I still left the house to get a haircut and groceries. Fail.) I worked 10 and a half days in a row to get through our first session deadline, stopped to spend half of Christmas eve here with Mike, then spent the last three days in Reno because that's where the rest of my family spent Christmas. Mom tried to tell me to stay home yesterday if I was still tired from the extra 48 hours I put on my last timecard; but I don't know when I'm going to see everyone again because of session monopolizing the next six months (at least); so of course I made the trip yesterday as well even though I wish I had another day to myself before I have to go back to work. Oh well. On top of all that, Mike left for Albuquerque to visit his parents and brother the day after Christmas and won't be back until Tueday. (I didn't go because he booked the tickets back when they were cheap and I had no idea if I'd get the days off. Wish I could have, but hopefully there will be better and less expensive chances to visit in the future.)

Ah, but I had a nice Christmas with everyone I got to see, and I really only have to work two and a half days before I get some more time off since management let us take as much time as we wanted between Christmas eve and January 2nd to reward us for getting through the deadline, so I'm looking forward to that, especially the actual staying home part.

I'd say more; but I have a massive headache; and I ought to stop complaining. Life's not so bad. Just a little rough at the moment. Hope you're all doing well.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
We worked today. After I got to tell everyone Friday that we had Veteran's day off, my boss got her mind changed by her boss and brought us all in today. At least we got to wear casual clothes, I guess.

Sometimes I find myself making connections where none really exist. I walked outside on my normal break times and was pleasantly surprised by the mostly blue skies with grey clouds blocking out the sun. While not winter yet, there was a chill in the air that complemented the dying leaves falling from the many trees on the grounds.

It was that morose melancholy I was looking for.

I told myself that with this kind of weather, it must be the last real day of the interim at work, the last real day before lawmakers and their hangers-on file into the building and disturb our sleepiness. Tomorrow, the new legislators start their three-day training, and after that, we'll have much more work and much less time to do it in.

But really, what does the day's temperature have to do with any of this? Not much, really. I know that. It's easy enough to draw these connections if you want to see them. Sure, the last few days have been warm and comforting, reminiscent of easier times, but it's fall. It's bound to get cold, and life's going to change again regardless. That's its prerogative, and we'll do what we always do-- muddle through as best as we can.

So we work another holiday, and it'll all make sense some other time. Or it won't. Either way, it's nice to feel like things are falling together, even if it means nothing at all.
howeverbrief: (Temp)
I've been very bad at keeping up with this thing. Oh well. A little at a time, I guess. I've been in overdrive lately, besides still being exhausted and feeling like I still haven't quite caught up from special session two weeks ago.

What was nice about the week after session ended is I already had Tuesday and Wednesday off because I scheduled it months ago so I could get x-rays one day and see my foot doctor the next. That appointment went very well. He said that I was pretty much healed (besides my osteopenia, which should keep going away) and that I should continue to get better and better. Because my mom has been to all of these appointments, she was there to ask if physical therapy was necessary anymore. The doctor said if I felt I wasn't making progress, I could quit; so I called them later that day and cancelled the rest of my appointments. I've been pretty frustrated with it for a while, so even though I still have work to do, this is a good thing. I've been trying to keep up with the exercises I was doing there and walking a ton because of fitbit and the walking challenge, so I think I'll get there eventually even if my foot still hurts most of the time.

We also got some new furniture delivered, which I think has helped us out in terms of organizing our house, but that's definitely an ongoing project considering we're experiencing some storage issues recently. Oh well. I will figure that one out soon I hope.

This week, work has been fairly slow, which has been very strange. It feels weird to go from deadlines and craziness to little to nothing being important. It's a bit of whiplash, really. Still, I know it won't be long before we're in ridiculous mode again, so I'm okay with this for now. I need a little bit of time to prepare for the new hires (not sure when they'll come, but I get to train them, so goody), and there's plenty still to do that doesn't involve session. I just hope we get it all done before it gets crazy again. Yikes.

On Thursday, Mike's parents came into town. They started a road trip that will take them from their home in New Mexico through Vegas and Carson City, up through the Boise and Pocatello area, down to Salt Lake and then back home, all in a few weeks. On this leg, they stopped here for the weekend to stay with us, and I think it went pretty well. Mike made New Mexican lasagne for dinner on Thursday and showed them around Reno and Tahoe Friday because I had to work. Yesterday, my parents came up to have brunch with all of us at Adele's (which I'm happy to report they liked, since that's apparently very hard to do), and we found a jacket for Mike's dad because he forgot to pack one. Other than that, we kind of hung around, had El Pollo Loco for dinner, then played Trivial Pursuit. They left early this morning, and I believe I heard they've already made it to Idaho. Phew! Sounds a bit grueling, but they're making good time.

Otherwise, today has been pretty lazy. I walked this morning. Mike and I went grocery shopping for our short week here. I am in the midst of laundry. The floors got semi-vacuumed before I ran out of motivation. Mike had to go to Livermore this afternoon for his monthly sales meeting, but he'll be back tomorrow. Also, hey, it's sunny after a few days of rain, so that's pretty pleasant. I think we're mostly looking forward to our trip to Texas later in the week. We leave on Thursday and are staying with Mike's friend Vanessa and her family. We also get to see a lot of his college friends (we're going to a fifth anniversary party of one of his friends because he didn't get to go to the wedding) and do some touristy stuff since I've never been outside the airport in Texas. Should be fun. Hopefully all goes well.

The only thing I'm slightly concerned about is Kiki. Last night I noticed a sore spot on her left front leg where it looks like she has worn away her fur and started gnawing away at her skin. :( This happened once before after she had the abscess drained from her back, which makes me wonder if maybe she's having some health or anxiety problems since there have been more people in the house the last few days, but I don't know. I'm keeping an eye on it and will go to the vet if it gets any worse, but any other suggestions as to why might be helpful.

Anyway, I kind of want to go veg some more, so that's it for now. Hopefully I can keep this up a little better in the coming weeks. Given my track record, I have no idea how long that hope will last. Oh well. It is what it is.

EDIT: Somehow I forgot to mention that my older sister Katie visited last weekend so she could get a new car, and my brother ended up getting a new one too. Sheesh. Way too much is going on recently. Calm would be nice. Maybe in a few more weeks, haha.
howeverbrief: (Smile)
Jeezy creezy, how long has it been? Well, I looked at the grease burn on my hand yesterday and remembered I got it last week, and even that feels like it happened so long ago that I could barely believe it.

I guess I should back up.

Last Thursday, Nevada's governor held a press conference that basically said that Tesla (the big fancy electric car company) had finally chosen our state for their huge gigafactory after months of dicking us, California, New Mexico, and Texas around. This has the potential to be great news, as it would be a huge economic boom for Nevada in terms of jobs and investments. However, in order to broker this deal, the Governor had to get the legislature to approve it.

Ah ha, there's the catch. The governor had to call a special session to do that.

I spent most of Friday worried that I wouldn't be able to go on the weekend trip that Mike had planned for our anniversary, which was Sunday. We were lucky, though. Work told us Friday afternoon that we would have to come in on Sunday at noon to prepare for special session, which gave me and Mike time to stay at the beautiful condo Mike rented for two nights. We ended up barbecuing, using their jacuzzi, running around Tahoe a bit and generally enjoying what time we had. The only real downside to the trip was the aforementioned grease burns on my hand and foot, which happened when Mike was frying bacon next to me for breakfast, but given the rest of the trip and all he did while I was neck deep in work (cooking, grocery shopping, and laundry!), I can't really hold it against him. He's really very sweet. Hopefully the scrapbook I made (which arrived after our anniversary, so he got to open it while I was working late one night) was an acceptable consolation prize. He did get year-old frozen cake out of the deal too. Haha.

Work from Sunday at noon on was insane. I think I worked more hours of overtime from Monday to Thursday than I did regular hours; and we had more than our fair share of hiccups because certain parts of our program hadn't been tested completely for the random out-of-nowhere session; but we made it through somehow. Hell, considering we had less than half of the staff we usually have during a regular session (because of temporary positions, people on vacation, and a sudden death in the family of one of our managers), I think we did pretty well. The legislature passed their four bills, and now it's up to Tesla to follow through. We'll see what happens.

What's more important for me is session ended Thursday around 10:00 at night, so now maybe we can get back to the projects we were working on before. My boss was kind enough to get Friday off for our unit, which was probably pretty wise because we wouldn't have been very productive after all that. I've still managed to overdo it this weekend with the projects (and the fitbit), but it's still been nice to have the time off to kind of pick up where I left off on personal things as well as continue to organize parts of the house which aren't so efficient right now. We also bought more furniture, but I think we're nearing the end of our upgrades in that department. Neverending tasks, you know.

Anyway, life is pretty positive at the moment. I'm running short of motivation at the moment, but hopefully we can keep this momentum going.

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