luciab: (carmen)
I had the most wonderful entry written up (Of course—they’re always wonderful after they’re gone, aren’t they?) but my graphics tablet locked up my computer and the whole entry is gone. Now this I don’t understand, because Word is supposed to back up my deathless prose every what- 10 minutes? And believe me, it took me way longer than that to write. And I even shut the computer down at least once during the day and when I booted it back up, the entry was there. But tonight, it’s all gone. It’s enough to make me whine in frustration. Oh, wait, I’m already doing that. Sigh.

I have some big news: I am taking Livia da Torta as an apprentice on Saturday at Midsummer Twilight Tourney. Whee! The ceremony will be at 4:45 at my pavilion; its exact location is yet to be determined. (You’re invited, of course. (Insert visions of non-SCAdians trekking in from Australia to see what the hell I’m talking about…)) We’re both pretty excited. We’ve been working together for a few months now, so this is just one step up. It’s interesting—when I was looking at the class schedule for Pennsic I found myself considering whether the class would be something that would be helpful for me to be able to teach Livia. Oh, this is exciting. We’re getting together tomorrow night to work out ceremony details, among other things. I have no idea what I’m doing, since she’s my first apprentice, but then she’ never done this before either, so I guess we’ll figure it out together.

And on to other matters: I am reluctant to get too excited, but I only had to pitch Miranda out of bed twice last night and the night before to make the point that she shouldn’t wake me up for loving in the middle of the night. Gee, wouldn’t that sentence be a lot more fun if I weren’t talking about a kitten? snork Especially since I’m a girl, too... now that’d be something you didn’t know about me. Way to start a rumour!

On that titillating note, I’m calling it a night. I’ve been fighting a migraine all day, and have worked two volunteer shifts and done laundry besides. I’m fried. I’m going to crawl into bed with Miranda. And Carmen. And Molly. Heh.
luciab: (carmen)
I went to Kentucky over the weekend, and boy, was it a trip. Lately my trips up there have been swift and relatively uneventful. I'm happy to report that this one was completely uneventful, but geez. It took me a half hour longer than usual to drive-- and that's each way. It rained all the way up on Friday- mostly just a drizzle requiring the wipers, but interspersed with downpours. Traffic was also unusually heavy, and there was construction scattered throughout Tennessee. I thought coming back would be easier, because I didn't expect rain. Silly me. It hit just the other side of Asheville, and was so heavy that there were cars pulled off the road. At least it wasn't that heavy for too awfully long.

This was even more of a family reunion event than these trips usually are. My brother came down from Akron, and his son brought his ten-week-old daughter over. (Her mom was going to a funeral in her family.) Holy shit, my baby brother is a grandfather!! Alexis, the infant, was a beauty. Her hair is bright red, and I do mean a light shiny copper color. She is also an extremely happy baby, generally speaking. Unfortunately, the night before, she'd not slept well, so her dad didn't sleep either, and we made him go take a nap while we got lunch together. In the meanwhile, Alexis needed to be fed... and if you've ever given a baby a bottle, you know what happens on the other end of the equation. Yup. I got to change a dirty diaper. (That's as certain as having the cats come running when I scoop the litter box!) The last time I changed a dirty diaper was for her father, I realized to my amusement. For some reason I didn't have any trouble this time; last time I had to abandon the task to a parent to keep from being sick. Watching my brother and his son gaze adoringly at this tiny infant was both amusing and sweet. I was delighted that Jacob is of the new breed of father that takes care of a baby and enjoys it. Boy, is THAT a change from the bad old days. I won't go into grisly detail, but take my word that my kids' father didn't lift a finger.

The odd thing that happened was that my brother (yes, the new grandfather) reverted to ten-year-old-brother mode and spent the entire first day we were there picking on me. That caught me completely off guard; he doesn't do that any other time I see him. Just something about being all four together as a family must have flipped some switch somewhere. The second day he acted more normal, which was good. I'd hate to have had to kill him, right there on Mother's living room rug. I'm sure it would have made quite a mess, and there's no way I could have disposed of the body.

I mentioned the idea of starting a business to Mother, and got a more negative response than I expected. Then it turned out that she thought I was going to open a store front. Yikes! When I finished explaining my plans she decided they sounded sensible, and even touted them as such to Daddy. Whew. I'm glad that I don't have to look forward to not-so-veiled comments about it for the next year or so. I do expect she'll start sending clippings about running a small business. Clippings are her stock in trade, but they're less stressful than the constant commentary.

The cats were most unhappy that I was gone, particularly since I was gone last weekend too. The first couple of hours they ran from me like I was going to beat them or something. Miranda made up to me the quickest, and has been washing my chin and giving me love nips all day. Some of them have been more nip and less love, I can tell you. At least she did a reasonable job of letting me sleep last night.

I got a killer headache this afternoon, and it came on rather suddenly. I was only vaguely aware that it was even starting and all of a sudden it hurt to even try to turn my head; it took over an hour for the meds to work, too. It took a while for me to figure out that it was from the storm that came through this afternoon. Man, I hope I don't get these every time it rains all summer! This was quite a storm, though, so I'm hoping the headache was directly related in intensity. The cats were freaked out by the thunder, and there was one lightning strike/thunder clap that nearly had me under the bed, too.

Tomorrow I hope to get started on that mental list of things-to-do that I was adding to all the way home yesterday. Today I just needed to bond with my kitties and sit around like a vegetable, and I did an exemplary job of it. I did finish reading The Knights Next Door, which I bought as a download. I enjoyed it a lot. Ah, tomorrow.....
luciab: (Default)
It’s been a weird day physically. Last night I fell as I was starting the bathwater. By sheer luck I managed to not hit my head, but I still landed hard enough that it jerked my head and I started to get a migraine. I hit the Imitrex immediately (I think I’m starting to get the hang of this, now that I’m sure I have enough to last me through the month!) and took ibuprofen to help keep the shoulder and buttal region from being so sore, since that’s where I took the brunt of the weight. I don’t like the fact that I have fallen several times in the last year and a half or so. When I mentioned it to the neurologist she sort of blew it off. I said, Well, I just think it’s weird-- adults just don’t usually fall down. How many times have YOU fallen recently? and she just looked at me like I was crazy. (okay, don’t say a word…) She obviously thought it was ridiculous that I asked if she had fallen. I mean, she’s a grown up and doesn’t just fall down. She didn’t answer me, either.

I was still sore today when I got up and went for a bone density scan. That was wonderfully painless, unlike the second appointment, which was a mammogram. I had the diagnostic version instead of the usual screening one, and of course they cranked the machine a little tighter for that kind. Oh, joy. At least the tech was going to some effort to keep the pressure on for as short a time as possible, unlike the really bad one I had when I swear the tech looked like one of those women in a Wagner opera and was determined to prove she had some serious strength to crank that machine tight. Yow. (Not to mention a serious run-on sentence!) After that they did an ultrasound. That didn’t hurt either but the tech was awfully non-verbal and kept cocking her head back and forth while looking at the monitor and making little hmmm sounds. Unnerving, I have to say. She didn’t help any by saying, “They’ll call you with the results. I’m not allowed to tell you anything else.” Which of course I already knew, but she was rather abrupt about it. Great. Now I get to wait “a couple of weeks” to hear the results. Whee.
luciab: (Default)
It’s been a nice little week. I haven’t had a headache for about ten days now, and that’s the first time in a long time I can say that. Like, a long time. Now if I just knew what has made the difference I could patent it and put it in a bottle. Heh.

I’ve been working on a court scroll this week and it has gone amazingly well. Gee, you suppose no headache had anything to do with that? I also got a commission to design an invitation for Ten Thousand Villages for an event in September. I needed to have a rough draft ready for them to look at last night. I had put it off and put it off, and finally couldn’t put it off any longer. I started to say that I don’t have any idea why I didn’t want to start it, but I think actually it was because I’ve never done anything exactly like that before and I was intimidated. What exactly did they want me to do? Yesterday I remembered that the woman I talked to mentioned using items in the store as inspiration, so I went over to see what I could see, notebook and pencils in hand. I saw a couple of things I liked a lot, and sketched notes on several other small potential details. It was fun—I haven’t done that for a long time. I finally got on the stick and put together two options. One is a tree of life, from Indian inspirations, and the other was also Asian, from some Vietnamese pottery we have. This one was some leaves and a dragonfly. I took both ideas to the meeting last night and they really liked both of them. They were all teasing me about my warning that these were rough drafts—they thought they were great. Wow, it feels so good to be complimented instead of belittled. Not that I expected this group to belittle me, but my most recent work experience tended rather much in that direction. Anyway…. It was funny—everyone liked the dragonfly better visually but we all voted for the tree of life because of the symbolism…. though none of us knew exactly what the symbolism was. Amusing. I’ll be able to make a nice invitation from it, though.
luciab: (Default)
Another too-long delay between posts. Sigh. How on earth to balance between doing something to write about and having time to write? It’s kind of like working overtime so you have extra money but then not having time to enjoy it.

I had a plan for the last week or two. See, now, that may have been the problem. Nia, for one, says that “plan” is a four-letter word and the mere existence of a plan means that it will fail. (Sounds like some of that really advanced Physics, about stuff not existing unless you look at it….) Anyway, I decided that I would try to have Gisele’s AoA scroll done by Crown, and to encourage that goal I planned to stay with her in DC and day trip Crown. This plan expanded, as plans are wont to do, to include an extra day or two in DC for me to see a museum or two. By the beginning of the week it was obvious that the scroll would not be done in time, but I was still trying to balance getting more done and having time in DC. I haven’t spent any time there seeing museums since I was in high school, and believe me, I wasn’t really looking at the exhibits then, so I figured I had plenty to see.

I wound up driving up on Thursday so I’d have all day Friday to amuse myself, and then Gisele and I could go to Crown on Saturday. Uh-huh. I amused myself, alright. I trekked from one end of the Mall to the other as fast as my short little legs would carry me, so as not to waste time that I could be spending in gape-jawed joy, looking at one thing or another. I am interested in so many things…. What to do, and which to do first? I considered Natural Sciences or Air and Space, but was rapidly dissuaded when confronted with all the rug rats that were waiting in lines to get in. I was feeling fine when I left Gigi’s Friday AM, but by the time I was halfway down the Mall I had a dull ache behind my eyes and was seeing double. A disconcerting feeling, that. That made the idea of sharing huge echoing spaces with screaming kids even less enticing.

The walk was long enough, and the migraine hit hard enough that I found myself musing on All in My Head by Paula Kamen, a book about living with chronic pain and disability. She makes the point that no one wants to see themselves as being disabled, and lord knows that’s true. Getting cross-eyed sick from just walking, and not even on a sunny day… well, hrm… maybe this isn’t so exaggerated after all. Crap.

Herein follows a description of the rest of weekend, including comments on Art and Architecture. (Please note the caps. Heh.) Read more... )

Monday saw me discover downloading music.Read more... )

Something that I’ve really realized more strongly than I suspected is that I seem to be approaching that line between Extrovert and Introvert, if I haven’t already crossed it and left it in the dust. If I don’t get plenty of alone-time, I get pretty damn cranky. Lately I’ve been in a really good mood and have been very productive, but damn. I was feeling stressed on Monday when Tuneless Boy upstairs started “playing” and “singing.” Believe me, I use those terms advisedly. Historically, I’ve been indulgently amused (though catty) about his lack of skill, and even admired him for enjoying himself so much and trying so hard. Monday I had no such tolerance. I had to leave the studio, because he practices directly above that room. I had plenty of work to do in other rooms, but I kept sticking my head in the door, hoping he’d follow his usual pattern and only play for about 5 minutes. Nope, he picked Monday to have a longer attention span than usual. His current fave seems to be Bob Dylan. You might think that would give him an advantage, since Dylan can’t sing either and many of his songs tend to be rather tuneless. Nope, he just sounds downright drunk and wanders ever farther off whatever passes for a tune. “It ain’t pretty” doesn’t begin to cover this subject. Wow.

Well, that pretty much brings me up to date on what’s happened in the last few days. Now to go out and do more stuff to write about.

Catching up

May. 3rd, 2005 10:07 pm
luciab: (Default)
It’s been too long since I posted… time sure slips away. I’ve been busy and kept thinking of things I wanted to write but I was getting so much done I hated to stop work to write. When have you ever heard me say that? And now I’ve forgotten too much of it. Sigh.

Brigida came over Saturday last as planned for our white dinner, and we had a really good time. It’s been so long I can’t remember everything we fixed, but the main dish was shrimp with mushrooms in white wine sauce, served with rice. We cheated and had brown rice, but that’s still pretty damn white. Dessert was angel food cake with vanilla ice cream and a kiwi/mango topping that was delicious. Don’t blame me for all the color in the fruit—Brigida did it. Since the whole white theme was her doing, I just went with it, and it was might tasty, too. She was feeling in a mood to spoil us, and got white roses for a centerpiece. I was delighted to be able to provide a few low-drama hours in her life. I’ve had plenty of drama, and I’m just mighty damn glad I’m not having any right this minute. It’ll be back, I’m sure of it. Wait, am I supposed to knock on wood or something now? Throw salt somewhere?

I’m working on a backlog scroll, so it isn’t even a secret. It’s been fun—lately I’ve been doing mostly court scrolls, so I’ve gotten into the habit of being secretive about what I’m working on and not letting the recipient know. This is Gisele’s AoA, and I’ve had to almost force myself to ask her questions about preferences. I’ve got the calligraphy done. It actually went better than usual, which was a vast relief. Practice! I’ve got to practice more. Duh. I know I’m always amazed at the difference it makes but I still don’t do it.

I was hoping to have Gigi’s scroll done by the time I go up this weekend for Crown, since I’m staying at her place. I don’t think it’s going to happen, though—at least not if I go up early to see a museum or two as I’d planned. I’m going to blame it on Nia and Nikulai, okay? They’ve been concerned that I’ve been too hermit-like, so they’ve kept me busy the last week or two. I mean, busy. Last week I was Out Doing Stuff three nights in a row, which is unheard of for me, at least the last few years. It was great fun, and I wanted to do every bit of it. Except… I wasn’t working on Gigi’s scroll. I’m good, but even I can’t be two places at once. I admit, it wasn’t ALL their doing. They were just too damn proud of themselves, is all. But on Wednesday night I found out that hot fudge cake is absolutely delicious with champagne, (Heh! I say, and Yum!!) and on Thursday night Nikulai fixed an email thing for me before we all went out for Mexican food, and on Friday he took me to Hillsboro to the opening of an art show and then we went to dinner again. He particularly wanted me to meet some other artist friends of his.

One of the things that has had me a bit distracted is the whole question of starting a small business out of my home. This has come up before, and I’m still scared witless by the concept. Read more... )

The headaches and their effect on me have been really erratic. Read more... )

I’ve had a lot more energy and gotten a lot more done lately. For example, I’ve been on a cleaning kick. First I did the kitchen, then the bathroom, then night before last I was putting away laundry and got annoyed because the linen closet was a mess, so I rearranged everything in it. Wow. What’s up with that? Most days the scroll work has been equally efficient, too. Not that I’m complaining, you understand. I want to work on the apartment as much as I want to find out about the business stuff, so I’m going to be bi-i-izzzzy.

I have been reading an interesting book by a woman who has had chronic migraines for several years. The book is called All in My Head and the author’s name is Paula Kamen. It’s both entertaining and informative.Read more... )

The fiction I’ve just finished reading is With No One As Witness, which is the latest in the Thomas Lynley/ Barbara Havers series written by Elizabeth George. That sucker has depressed the hell out of me. It’s slightly less depressing now than before I knew how it ended. Still, I hated the ending, which is just … awful. Hated it. So there. She gives you one hopeful thing in the last paragraph, but I’m afraid to read the next one (whenever she writes it,) for fear of what she’ll do next. It only makes it worse that she’s such a good writer, because then you really care what happens to the people in the book. I might make someone else read it first (like Ysolt—she’s the one who got me hooked on the series) and tell me if it’s safe to read.

I was very disappointed yesterday to find that Amy had mailed me a complete set of CDs of the music from their wedding over a week ago, and I haven’t gotten it. Oddly enough, I had been thinking I’d like to have the music. I was probably thinking that about the time she mailed it. (Let’s hear it for that mother-daughter connection…. Ooooh weeeeeeoooooh…) Anyway, that’s the second item mailed to me in less than a month that I didn’t get. I knew our mail isn’t real secure but I’d never been aware of a problem before. Amy said the package was just a plain CD mailer and was obviously nothing special, so she can’t imagine that anyone would bother to take it. It’s just weird, though….

I'm going to call it a night, and hope I'm back in go-get 'em mode tomorrow. And I'll take some light reading to bed with me. A mystery that is entertaining and doesn't make you get all engrossed in the characters and then... oh, nevermind.
luciab: (Default)
Carmen and Miranda just love it when I paint. For some reason, they love the water that I use to rinse my brushes. You'd think it tasted like salmon or tuna or something; they keep trying to sneak up and drink it when I'm not looking. Since I know that some pigments can be kinda dangerous, I try to keep them out of the water, but damn! They love it. And all those little tiny brushes bounce real nice and make little tinky noises when pushed off the edge of the desk. If the kittens are really lucky, they can catch the paint just right in the little flat pans and step in it while it's wet so it'll make great pawprints. You know, when they're climbing over things to get to my lap or shoulder or wherever else they plan to sit on me. Oh, but they purr so loudly when they get there. They know their job well. Since I'm not in the middle of painting anything at the moment, they've managed to clean off the corner of the desk, and now Carmen is curled up there in a perfect little ball, looking tidy and innocent.

I'm debating whether to modify a couple of my t-tunics tomorrow so they'll fit better. The question is, how are are t-tunics supposed to fit? Especially since the ones I have are pretty much generic t-tunics instead of specific period versions of anything at all. I just don't want 'em to look like potato sacks. I could easily fix two or three of them tomorrow.

Caroline contacted me about getting signatures on her Pel scroll that I just finished. You know, the one I did on black paper, which thus can't be signed with normal ink, but must be signed using the same paint I used for ink when I did the scroll. I'll have to get it to the right consistency on Saturday and have some paper there for TRMs to practice on. Sometimes I'm just too damn artistic for my own good.

I had a good day today, though I was dubious when I woke up. I had the vague beginnings of a migraine, but used a sublingual homeopathic preventive OTC med, and it actually worked. This is the third time it's worked for me, and I'm pretty excited about it. The only problem I've found with it is that it has to be used before the headache is really started, and lots of times I wake up with a full-blown headache going on. Today, though, after I took it I worked at Ten Thousand Villages in the morning, dropped off donations at two different places, (yes, I actually gave away more of that stuff I gathered up last week! Whee!) went to the grocery and then finished the self portrait I've used as my icon for LJ. Actually, the icon is a cut-down version, because I got carried away as usual and made the miniature too big (and too elaborate?) Anyway, I couldn't figure out how to get it down to 40 KB; even when it was 100 pixels square it was more than double that size. Needless to say, the bigger one is much cooler, with irises behind the book stand and Molly beneath the desk. I'd love to be able to use it. It's also true that even if I got the numbers right, you might not be able to tell that it is Molly beneath the desk. It is actually possible to have too much of a good thing. Sigh. Like, even if there are a thousand angels dancing on the head of a pin, who could see them anyway?

I pulled a real good one earlier this week. I was supposed to go to jury duty Monday morning, and was actually looking forward to it. (You know, us folk on disability are amused easily.) Except I had a godawful migraine for about three days and didn't even realize I was supposed to go until it was a day or two later. As Nia says, "Oh, so there's a warrant out for your arrest?" To which I could only anwer "yes." I've been trying to call ever since to find out what to do but there hasn't been anyone to take the call ("please call back") so I guess I'd better go down there tomorrow. Of course, I suppose if they were going to arrest me, that would make it awfully convenient. Somehow I suspect there's another option-- at least I hope there is. If I were to go to jail, I'd get absolutely no respect at all in the joint if I were in for missing jury duty. I'd be somebody's bitch for sure.

On that cheery note, I'm signing off. I want to get t-tunics pinned and miscellaneous stuff ready to go for tomorrow night. See y'all.
luciab: (Default)
I don't think my last entry made a lot of sense; let's just say that Turbo Tax wasn't the piece of cake I hoped it would be. With one employer, one bank paying me a tiny bit of interest, and only the standard deduction, how hard can this BE? I'm trying to file for free via the IRS link and had selected them as the lucky chumps. What with one thing and another, that just totally hasn't worked out and I'm filing through another company. It won't be totally free since I'm paying to e-file in NC. Wait. That isn't worth it. I have the form all printed out; I'll just mail the damn thing and get a check mailed. I can wait that long, and it'll save me money, which is key right now. (I have to pay the feds about half of this month's disability income, in addition to what they already withheld. It still doesn't seem right to me, but I knew Georgie was re-distributing the wealth. I guess his defense contractor-pals' kids were complaining about their low allowances.) No, wait-- I have to e-file, since K is in TX and we're still married, thus necessitating that whole signature thing. Sigh. Gotta get that divorce thing done. Damn.

Isn't it wonderful living in my mind? No wonder I'm confused. To top off this little discussion, I thought, oh, hell, I'll just go on and file and be done with it. That's the simple thing to do, and I won't have to worry about it any more. Except when I got back into the program I remembered that when I was doing Turbo Tax I authorized a debit to pay the feds, and I don't know if that will still go through, or it it's tied to the final filing via their site. Since it's to be paid on the 14th, I'll wait till the 15th and see if it cleared on the 14th, and if it didn't, I can file then. Life is never simple.

I saw the neurologist today. She was more responsive today than she has been on other visits. Hell, I know everybody has off days. Today things were clicking, though, and we hope we made some discoveries. We're trying a different approach-- a muscle relaxant at bedtime, since an awfully lot of the time my migraines start during the night. I just find that bizarre-- I have what is obviously a misconception, that the body is relaxed at night. Since I already know that I clench my teeth so tight they ache in the mornings, you'd think I'd have given up that silly notion, but I still cling to it. Today I felt more like she really wants to get rid of the migraines, is aware of all the meds I'm on and wants to keep them to a minimum, as soon as we can find something that works. I'm also considering acupuncture. My insurance will only pay if the acupuncturist is also an MD, and that combination isn't real common here in NC. Not sure it's real common anywhere-- I figure that's why they did it, but hey. There is one listed in the phone book, so I'll give him a call next month.

I'm going to go paint awhile to cheer myself up. Nothing like getting lost in a miniature for a good distraction!

wassup?

Apr. 4th, 2005 11:30 pm
luciab: (Default)
I'm probably one of the few people in the entire state of NC who ins't jumping up and down and screaming with joy right now about the NCAA. Hrmph. I was sitting here in the middle of the state feeling perversely midwestern and hoping Illinois would pull out a victory. Oh, well. In the overall scheme of things I guess it's not really earth shaking. And if it makes everyone else in the state happy I guess it's not all bad.

It's been a slow couple of days. Absolutely gorgeous outside with brilliant blue skies and bright sunshine, and I've enjoyed the picture postcard quality from safe inside my nest. I feel like such a vampire. I really hate that I don't enjoy being out in the sunshine any more, but I really don't look forward to it at all. Talk about perverse. I've had a bad migraine to start with the last two days, so bright light sure isn't the ticket. Today I couldn't do anything besides sit and read, which the cats adored. I hate to have too many of those days in a row, though. I want to get some spring cleaning done! I've got tons of stuff to donate to somebody or other, and then there's the stuff to pitch.... I'll be able to see so much more floor when I'm done. And even if I still act like a vampire, I won't feel like a troll with a cluttered cave.

I think the kittens must have had a growth spurt. They look much bigger all of a sudden. I noticed when I got back from Kentucky that they had gotten big/strong enough to make a single graceful leap onto things they used to have to clamber onto by circuitous routes. Their play has changed somewhat, too. They have started to fluff their tails when they chase each other and they are doing a lot more pouncing on each other, too. Fortunately they haven't been pouncing on Molly a lot. I don't know if they will-- she gives them holy hell when they startle her. When one of them just walks up to her she's being pretty friendly for the most part nowadays. Just don't surprise her!

I was/am pleased with the way Caroline's scroll came out. I went with the black paper/gold lettering and grisaille style painting. I don't know if/when I'll do another one like that, though I think it's a great effect. It's just..... well, the thing I like best about painting is the color. The black, white, grey and gold is elegant, but it's kinnd of boring to paint. And geez, it takes three or four coats of white paint, even the opaque stuff, to cover black paper. Yikes.
luciab: (Default)
I haven’t filed a kitten update for a couple of days; I’ve been trying to wean you off gradually. They have actually settled down a lot more quickly than I expected in relation to my painting in the studio. For the most part, they curl up either in the office chair or on the towel behind the painting table and are happy to be nearby. Every hour or two they decide they need some love but then they quiet down again. They have, of course, discovered the knock-the-paintbrush-off-the-table game, so I have to keep an eye out for that, but I have been delighted for the most part. And relieved. It had been so many years since I had a really-truly-kitten I wasn’t sure what I was in for.

I’ve been closing the door to the studio at night to keep kittens off the scroll and out of all the tempting toys, and last night the inevitable happened—Miranda got shut in the studio. Hey, they were all out, and she was just awfully fast, okay? This morning when I got up I saw her paw reaching under the door to play with Carmen and realized what had happened. Oh, no! Poor lonesome hungry kitten! When I opened the door she threw herself upon me, meowing piteously, and immediately started purring like mad. When she started chasing Carmen ferociously, I figured she couldn’t have been too traumatized and relaxed. There were no disasters in the studio, either, fortunately.

I have finished the scroll and started making a dress for my current narrow self. The kittens are enjoying the hell out of that endeavor, of course. Little bits of fabric flip enticingly, large folds of fabric make great places for hide-and-seek, the paper pattern rustles, the scissors tip bobs up and down, thread spools make such a funny sound when they roll across the hardwood floor… what’s not to love? The only limiting factor is how many places can they pounce at once.

I saw the neurologist today, to mixed reviews, I guess. She thinks I’m maxed out on dopamax but says that there is another med that works well in combination with that, so now I have yet another pill to take every day. Sigh. If it works, I won’t complain. Hell, if it works, I’ll be dancing in the streets. Yeah, I know, working on my crazy-lady street cred already.

The Legend of Earthsea is on Sci Fi tonight. It is apparently a re-run from November, but I didn’t catch it then, so I’m looking forward to seeing it. On second thought, high hopes may be misplaced, since I haven’t heard anything at all about it. Oh, well, I’ll keep sewing and watch while I work.
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I’ve been quietly painting along for the last couple of days. Just painting, with the TV or a movie playing. I tell ya, the TV is getting pretty old. Last time I was sitting here for a year painting, La Femme Nikita was in reruns on one of the cable channels, but there’s nothing so good on now. It’s all ER, Law and Order, American Justice, Cold Case Files and NYPD Blue, and I’ve seen all these episodes several times already. At least I’ve missed the ones with Sipowicz’s butt in them. Whew. That’d put me off my feed for a day or two. I did see a City Confidential I hadn’t seen before last week. I love the cheesy similes they sprinkle through the show like candles on an octegenarian’s birthday cake. This one said the woman was drawn to the man “like an SUV to a gas pump.” Heh.

Damn, people. This is pitiful. The Food channel makes me think about food, which isn’t exactly the plan when you want to lose instead of gain weight, and the Travel channel has an analogous effect for the broke. The History Channel has too much on WWII and too little on the middle ages. National Geographic has some good shows, but I have to watch out or I fall into a nest of Seconds From Disaster which I find very interesting, but it sure doesn’t help the whole depression factor. Dr G, Medical Examiner falls into that category, too. I’ve only seen a few episodes of Diagnosis Unknown but it seems to be pretty predictable—what kind of poison is it? Duh.

The movies haven’t been so great either. Yesterday I mentioned Where the Buffalo Roam. When I went to rent that, I also got Ray which is the first movie I’ve seen in a reasonably timely manner in ages. Problem is, I couldn’t get into it at all. I figured, with the music, how could I go wrong? Maybe I didn’t watch long enough but there wasn’t enough of the music to carry it, as far as I was concerned. Maybe I just wanted the music and not the biography; I dunno what I was thinking. Anyway, the woman who used to enjoy movies, almost any movies, has now struck out twice in a row.

In terms of the painting, though, the scroll is coming along nicely. It’s nearly done. It’s looking gooooood. Heh.

Still no word from the job interviewers. It’s been about three weeks, which really isn’t long for the state. I was talking to a friend the other day, who asked, Are you ready to go back to work? The question surprised me. Erk? Further questioning made me realize that she was asking me a really good question and that I’m not sure my automatic “of course” was accurate. Last month I thought the migraines were doing better, but this month I’ve maxed out all my pills again. The prescription-month I’ve just started isn’t off to such a hot start, either. All I can say is, the job is in the hands of a Higher Power, and if it’s supposed to work out it will. I feel kind of like a mooch not going to an office every day, but the migraines aren’t stopping. I think that I could manage a less stressful job but I don’t really know that, do I? And I won’t until it’s too late. I thought I really wanted the job but now I have to wonder. Maybe I do need to wait a while longer. If they offer it to me, though, I know I’ll take it. Drug myself to the gills and go. Whoopee! Pop those Imitrex! Max out the dopamax!

I’ve also made plans to go to Kentucky in March. I wrote to my brother and asked if there was a chance he could come in, too. I can’t think how many years it’s been since all of us have been together. That would be too wonderful for words. He wrote back and said his honey is scheduled to work, but that he’s trying to switch with someone so they can come. I sure hope that works out.

The kittens are being adorable and have actually slept in the office chair or on the table behind the painting surface for a fair amount of time during the last couple of days, thus allowing me to paint unimpeded. Wow. How great is that? Kitten affection interspersed with having both hands free to paint for several hours at a time. Miss Molly watches them when they play, and once or twice has even stretched out a paw like she’s considering playing with that paw sticking out from behind the door. So far she’s kept her dignity and reconsidered but I live in hope.

Tomorrow is Thursday, so I’ll be going to Ten Thousand Villages for a few hours. It makes a nice break in the week. Gets me out of the house and away from the reruns on TV. I can talk to real live two legged people, who will converse with me, instead of just the furry four legged kind, who will probably converse with me but not in a language I can understand. Wow. I do need to get out.
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My first LJ entry. I had been considering/meaning to start this anyway, and nomadicmedic said in his journal, "M.Lucia, you need an LJ." so I did. Heh. That'll teach him to be careful what he asks for.

I am sitting here with the TV tuned to the Westminster Dog Show, which is very interesting. Also somewhat amusing, since I'm a hardcore cat person, but these guys are amazing. Some are beautiful, some just weird, but hey. I'm sure they're world-class weird. There are a couple tonight that have really long white and grey hair, and they look like clouds when they run. Those are the beautiful ones. The Puli is interesting-- damn dog has dreadlocks. I can't imagine trying to grooom that for a dog show. Wow. Now there's a mean-looking self-propelled dust-mop running around... sorry, it's a Peke. Ick. I like the Bloodhound a lot better than the Peke. It's fun watching the different handlers, too. They have to run around in circles while looking professional, which ain't easy.

Locally, the kittens are chasing each other up and down the length of the apartment. I feel like I should apologize to Miss Lily, because I know to her they sound like elephants-- except if she expressed real displeasure we'd both be screwed; there's no way I'm getting rid of the babies and if I've got 'em up here they're going to be playing. So I can only hope she doesn't sit down there being unhappy about it. Tabitha is probably going to her new home tomorrow. She is the one who has been challenging Miss Molly, and she isn't even going to be staying. Both Carmen and Miranda are more deferential to Molly; we'll see how they are without Tabitha to take the heat.

I've gotten some painting done today, but not as much as I hoped. A non-SCAdian friend called and wanted to take me to lunch and ask me some building code type questions. Ah! Lunch! I thought. We went for mid eastern and it was delicious. I hadn't talked to her for a couple of months, so it was good to see her, too. It was a gorgeous sunny day so she opened the sun roof on her car--- which let the sun shine on my face. That is, unfortunately, a good news/bad news sort of thing. It is cosmically unfair that someone who loves the sun as much as I do should get migraines from being in sunshine, but that's what happened. I came home and curled up and slept for a couple of hours, with kittens under my chin. Not a bad way to nap, but I was hoping to paint my little ass off all day. Sigh. I was able to paint after the nap but still not as much as I hoped.

When I got my hair cut last week, my stylist David and I were talking about travel. He owns the salon and does well enough that he takes at least a two-week trip every year to some exotic locale. I commented that I don't have a passport, and David asked why. I was kind of stumped. Well, I've never needed one. I've been to Canada and Mexico but never farther than that, I said.

Well, I guess if you don't want to travel you don't need one, said David.

But I LIKE to travel, and I've always wanted to go to Italy. I just never thought I could. And we talked about why that was, and I got to thinking... maybe I'll just get a passport. Because sometime I hope to be able to go, and maybe it'll give me a little boot in the behind. Why not?

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Susan Arthur

February 2011

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