Saturday, April 19, 2014

Random ramblings

Sorry for the late blogging start--I've fallen behind really badly in my housework, and I'm trying to get caught back up now that I'm feeling a bit better. 

Two months ago, I noticed that it felt like my thyroid meds quit working not too long after I got the refill.  I thought I'd gotten a weak or off batch, and jumped early on the refill.  It worked well enough to lift the brain fog somewhat, but my energy never came back up.

My next thought was that I'd need a stronger prescription, and we'd see next fall when I got my blood tests done. 

Odysseus didn't want to wait that long, and so he went looking online to see if there was anything that could be done to help support thyroid function--if I was eating something I shouldn't, or wasn't eating something I should--and found that there were a few vitamins, herbs, and minerals that might help.  He went on Thursday to the local health food store, and looked for them, finding a bottle marked "Thyroid."  So, he got it for me.  It was close to $19 for 90 capsules, but it's working.  I have enough energy to do housework for the first time in a couple of months.

So far, I have the living room most of the way cleaned up, the kitchen halfway cleaned up, the heaviest of the winter clothes packed away, and the tee shirts pulled out.  I've also got the laundry all washed, but for the bedding and the towels.  I still need to put away all the clean clothes, finish picking stuff up off the floor to vacuum in the living room, sweep and mop the kitchen, and finish with all the little stuff I've been ignoring in favor of getting the big stuff done.

And yes, the kids have been helping.  They've been helping enough that they're going to get extra in their allowance next weekend. 

The imp has been begging for new toys, lately.  So, we looked around Walmart for something he could buy with his allowance, and we found that there were some new engines and things from Thomas the Tank Engine Take 'n' Play sets.  We helped him count out five dollars of quarters, and then let him pay for his own toy separately.

The pixie asked to buy a toy, too.  I agreed to loan her the money, with the understanding that she'd pay me back as soon as we got home.  She chose a baby Disney Princess--Ariel.  And she handed the baby and the money over to the cashier herself.  She was so proud of herself (and so dang adorable).

She has since been singing to her new dolly and rocking her and feeding her with the bottle that came with her.

The imp played outside for quite a while.

She's still down for a nap.

He's trying to be quiet.

The cats, on the other hand, are not trying to be quiet.  Up until a few moments ago, they were thundering up and down the hall, chasing and tackling one another.

The dog has been up to her old antics: snatching the brush out of my hand and flinging it across the kitchen, throwing her squeaky toys under my foot as I'm stepping down when I have an armload of stuff (kids' breakfasts, this morning) and startling the shit out of me, and refusing to come in when I go out to get her.  I'm beginning to think I'm going to just need to feed her in her pen, because she wouldn't come inside until nearly eleven last night.

I have one more day of lecture on Tuesday, then working my ass off grading papers as fast as I can while they blog for the rest of the semester.  I only have four more class days, two of which are days with office hours.

(And part of the reason I'm working so hard on trying to catch up with housework is so that I can get caught up with what I'd let slide before class on Tuesday.)

Writing had, quite frankly, stalled again.  Between the lack of physical energy, having trouble focusing, and having had a tendency to fall asleep when I try to work, I've gotten very little done.  I've gotten back into it as of last night after I got the kids to bed.  So the revision of Pendragon Resurgent is coming along slowly but surely. 

I'm waiting for the final feedback on Lizzy's Tail (or Tale--I'm having trouble deciding), and waiting on the cover art, and then I'll be pushing that through the publication process.  I'm planning on putting that at the $3.99 minimum price, plus a $0.99 Kindle version.  

I've started building the bare bones of the story lines in Fire and Forge, the next installment in Modern Gods.  I've also decided how I'm going to write the appendix to make it worthy of a $0.99 price point as a Kindle story (and it's going to be my next project).  So, once I'm done with the children's book, and Pendragon is sent off to my beta readers, I'll be working on "Bar Tabs."

I think that's pretty much it for the week...

Friday, April 18, 2014

Self punishing...

My imp just now went to bed.  I am absolutely out of patience with him, and just want some damn quiet time. 

He wasn't too badly behaved until just a few minutes ago.  He came out and told me he was done cleaning up (he wasn't), and wanted some snuggles.  I told him to go in his room and wait for just a minute, while I said goodnight to his aunt, with whom I was speaking on the phone. 

He did not. 

Instead, he chose to do the opposite of what I said, and actually ran toward me.  He is not permitted to run in the house because he does not watch where he's going, and tends to trip over random crap that appears in the floor for him to trip over. 

So, he disobeyed once with coming over in the first place, then disobeyed a set rule by running.  And he tripped over the shoes he left on the floor in front of the couch, falls forward, and smacked the bridge of his nose (right below his eyebrows) on the edge of my end table.

I feel no sympathy for him at this point.  None. 

I guess I am just going to have to let him hurt himself to figure out the hard way why the rules are there, because the little twerp simply does not listen to my explanations, nor does he obey the rules.

FFOT: my thyroid

Apparently, either my meds have been too near their expiration date, have been watered down, or I've quit responding to them.  It's been two months since I had the energy to do clean the living room, sort and put away laundry, or more than the bare minimum with the dishes. 

And that can fuck the fucking fuck off, because I have a shit ton of work to do. 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Cooler than shit.

Apparently, there is a music school in Holland--called The Metal Factory--that does more than just music.  They also do "entrepreneurship: the management side, booking, merchandising... also history and music theory": something that university music programs here don't do. 

Here, in the U.S., a degree in music is almost worthless, outside of teaching.  The only things my university's program requires are dedication, a willingness to spend almost twice as long as anyone else (and rack up debt so doing), and a butt-ton of instruments and vocals classes, as well as a complete and total lack of stage fright (concerts and recitals are very, very much required).  It doesn't require something students can use to make a living.  It doesn't seem to hold the expectation that the students can make a living with it.

I like that the Dutch school emphasizes the practical with the music, the theory, and the history.

Now, that's a good sign.

So.  We're back to this.  Only, this time, it's in Ukraine. 

Last time, the Jews were rounded up and shoved into ghettos--where they were easy targets for the local governments to aim angry citizens at, and where it was simple to blast through and hand out beatings, rapes, pillaging, and burning. 

And that was just in eastern Europe and Asia. 

And it got worse, as it always does.

Worse yet? They don't have an effective means of self-defense, as everyone in the US has access to, legally or not.

And this is what our own government wants us to face.

No, thanks.

Oh, ow...I rolled my eyes too hard.

Remember my post about my take on taking the Lord's name in vain?  Well, here's an egregious example of some dumb twat doing exactly that.. 

I really don't think God's gonna be happy about this one.  The arrogance of announcing that his place in heaven is assured when the fruit of his tree is rotten is probably gonna work against him. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


Okay.  We are about three weeks out from the end of semester.  Almost done. 

I have a colleague who I help with his online class's grading from time to time--he's older, has eye dryness problems that cause pain and damage if he's not careful, and has more on his plate than he needs because he's one of the department's go-to guys. 

So, he emails me today, and asks me to pick up with what they turned in last night.  Easy stuff--Thoreau's Walden.  My colleague asked some easy questions to make sure they'd read and comprehended the piece.

And one of his students...three weeks from the end of the semester...on a simple, short, three question post, copied and pasted from Cliff Notes. 

Okay, dearie.  I understand that the end of the semester is always rough.  I get that.  Most of the professors on campus simply don't think about all of the homework that will be piled on you right at the end.  Most of the professors don't think about what kind of grading that sets them up for, and a few who do know, don't care. 

I get that.

That said, my colleague has had those assignments posted all damn semester.  A couple of his students have already finished the class's work.  She easily could have, too, but instead chose to plagiarize.  Copy and paste plagiarism, even. 

With maybe twelve posts to go. 

And this girl threw away a high B/low A in so doing.

She needs to either re-prioritize her life and the things she chooses to do, or drop the fuck out.

My colleague forgives a not-done assignment before he does a plagiarized one. 

If I hadn't ruled out public school already...

...this would do it. 

This is about fifteen or twenty minutes north of us. 

The thing I don't get is why, with charges of statutory rape and sodomy, this creature has a bail bond of only $5,000. 

Yes, you read that right.  Only five thousand dollars.  Not fifty, not five hundred.  Five thousand. 

And people wonder why I equate public school with child abuse.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


That's how much of our tax money is spent on things that are within the federal government's realm of responsibility. 

49% goes on Welfare/foodstamps/social security.  A further 20% goes on "income security and other benefits."* 

Read this.  And tell me you're not pissed off.

*Full disclosure: we get the earned income tax credit.  Yes, it adds up to more than we pay in, total.  We would refuse it in a heartbeat if it meant that the federal government would cease handing out money taken from those who have earned it to give to those who refuse to earn it.  As it is, we look at it as a refund of all the social security money that we will pay into the system, but never see a penny back from.


Now this is funny.  "If you have a Boehner lasting more than 23 years..."



I warned him...

The imp was playing outside until just a few minutes ago.  Now?  Now, he's down for a nap.

Y'see, a few minutes prior to that, he'd decided to come inside, then go back out, then come back in, and go back out.  I told him, the last time he came in, that he could either go back out and stay outside until I called him in after the pixie wakes up, or he could go down for a nap of his own.

Yeah, guess what?  He didn't stay outside.

Now, he has to take a nap.

I am nothing if not consistent in enforcing the promises of consequences I make. 

I hate online forms.

There are instructions for enrolling kids into the school we're putting the kids into on the school's website.  A few pages of online forms to fill out.

I can't get the pixie enrolled.  I follow the instructions...and all I see is the info for the imp's enrollment, which is already done.

I am beyond frustrated at this point.

Update: It's not me.  Well, it is, but not entirely my fault.  For some weird reason, their computer system has flubbed up because I enrolled the kids at different times, instead of both at once, because I wasn't anticipating putting the pixie into preschool this fall.  Until I got my classes assigned, and Odysseus enrolled in his.

So it's not just my fault.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Achievement unlocked: dog torture

Yep.  I did it.  I brushed the dog.  Got enough undercoat stripped out that we could almost have another dog.  She's a shaggy little thing--we haven't shaved her since last spring--and has a lot of needed-to-shed undercoat that just got matted in her top coat when it came loose. 

She put up one hell of a fight.  No blood was drawn, but I'm exhausted, she's exhausted, and there's hair all over the floor (even if I did get most of it pried out of the brush and into the bucket next to me--and the bucket's about a third of the way full of Scotty dog hair). 

But I did it.  I tortured the dog.

At least, she thinks it's torture. 

Yep--she made it.

The pixie is enrolled in preschool for the fall.  Her classes will be 8:00-12:00 on MWF.

She impressed the superintendent, too.  She hid her face on me and refused to show off for him, so I showed her a stack of coasters on the corner of his desk, and asked how many there were.  She peeked around and glanced, then looked up at me: "Three." 

She, if I may remind you, is three.  She told us all what color things were ("My dress is pink and purple, with hearts"), and finally warmed up a bit--enough to smile and show dimple, and announce that she loves baby dolls. 

So, both of my kids will be in school in the fall. 

Time flies.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Captain America: Winter Soldier

It.  Was.  AWESOME!

Although, I will say that it did poke me in all of my paranoid tender spots.