liralen: Finch Painting (Finch)
Yes, it has occurred to me that the whole year's worth of pursuing gaming was actually my running away from something else.

Immersing myself within game worlds, with people I could probably never see face-to-face, whom I didn't even know the real names of, was incredibly like the early Usenet in some ways. Handles like MonkeyMasterB8, Synchronous Heartbeat, ExtraOrdinary, Randomizer, ToastGhoast, and my favorite EvilDeath1234 were all a part of it. Most people felt it mildly rude to be looking for real names, though, eventually, with all the time in conversation, we would start to talk about our real lives.

Pursuing, if not perfection, at least excellence, with those whose sole purpose was to get better at the game, was intoxicating, and playing with people who did little but play video games for all their time off filtered for those for whom this was their life for now. And it turns out a lot of us really are walking away from life for a while, for various reasons.

And I had my own reasons... )
liralen: On the road (road)
Four of the guys who were regulars, either as substitutes or as main players, have said that they won't go forward with the team. Merek, the one with the most experience in competitive, who had gotten into ESEA open teams that were quite good, said explicitly that he wasn't going to play with the team if I wasn't playing anymore.

He said that he'd had so much experience in competitive that it wasn't about winning anymore, it was about the people he was playing with. And if they weren't fun to play with, then it wasn't worth doing. And if I wasn't going to be playing with him, then he didn't want to play anymore.

When I told Joanne that they'd had to have an ex-plat medic to replace me, she interrupted and said, "They can't replace you. No one can replace you." She was right.

And I have to hear them both... )
liralen: Finch Painting (fire)
It's been a crazy summer, so far. We've been insanely busy, but the last couple of weeks have been even crazier, with 100+ degree weather, a few wild fires that multiplied in one day's thunderstorms into dozens of wildfires. The air's constantly smoky, but we're not directly threatened by anything, thank goodness. Still, it's rather disheartening seeing all the ways the fires are out of human control, and how close they can strike, when places like NCAR, the National Center for Atmosphere Research had to be evacuated because of the Flagstaff fire. It's very close to here.

I've mostly been inside with an air cleaner, and we're watching a lot of the local coverage, and it's been just kind of crazy all over here. There are drives for donations for all the evacuees, the fire fighters themselves, and lots of local help has come to the fore, which has been really great to see, too. Sorry about the quietness for the whole of this summer.

A few of the things we've been up to... )
liralen: Finch Painting (Ukitake_tea_contemplation)
Last Friday, John and I took the day to go up to the Buddhist Shambala Mountain Retreat. One of our neighbors and several people in our church are Buddhist, and our neighbor goes up there regularly for retreats. It was the same neighbor who told us about the granite countertops. John was curious as to what it would be like, and I was willing to go on the adventure with him.

So, on Friday, as soon as we saw Jet off on the bus to school, we got our hiking gear, drinking water, and sunglasses into the Passat, and headed out to I 25 and then north to Fort Collins. Once we were far enough north we turned west and drove up into the mountains, through rolling foothills, and ended up at the head of the dirt road with a sign that said, "Shambala Mountain Center 5 mi."

We turned down the dirt road... )

liralen: Finch Painting (hug)
I've been having a mildly unusual time of getting taken care of by a lot of people. A good number of them are from our church, and the biggest flood of that was on Sunday, where everyone offered us a hug, condolences, and a few moments of thoughtful conversations. It was amazing how much support we got on that day.

And I'll never forget Strider's words, he said that his experience was nearly the opposite of what John's was when his father passed away; but that on hearing John's story he could find the world a gentler place because he now knew that such a passing was possible.

We've had two meals already delivered to our door, and a third offer that will be in a day or two. When I was first asked if we wanted a meal, my first inclination was that they didn't have to bother, or that I was okay with cooking, but really it was a way for them to let us know they cared. So I said, yes, and I've been comforted and I think it comforted them as well. Remembering the times we've brought meals to people, it was a good thing for us as well as them.

And sometimes I have to remember that, yes, I am exhausted and a little fragile as well, and at others, I don't... )
liralen: Finch Painting (hug)
I've been having a mildly unusual time of getting taken care of by a lot of people. A good number of them are from our church, and the biggest flood of that was on Sunday, where everyone offered us a hug, condolences, and a few moments of thoughtful conversations. It was amazing how much support we got on that day.

And I'll never forget Strider's words, he said that his experience was nearly the opposite of what John's was when his father passed away; but that on hearing John's story he could find the world a gentler place because he now knew that such a passing was possible.

We've had two meals already delivered to our door, and a third offer that will be in a day or two. When I was first asked if we wanted a meal, my first inclination was that they didn't have to bother, or that I was okay with cooking, but really it was a way for them to let us know they cared. So I said, yes, and I've been comforted and I think it comforted them as well. Remembering the times we've brought meals to people, it was a good thing for us as well as them.

And sometimes I have to remember that, yes, I am exhausted and a little fragile as well, and at others, I don't... )
liralen: Finch Painting (snowflake)
We've gotten quite a bit of snow in the past few days. Another six inches last night of the powdery stuff. There's pictures on the TV of folks shoulder deep in powder as they ski down the slopes...

But it's meant that we've had to do quite a bit of shoveling of the front walk, the sidewalks leading to the house and the driveway. There's a methodology to it so it's not too hard, and doesn't really require much thought.

But this morning, as I was snowplowing with the shovel and had time to think, a bunch of things kind of came together. At the moment I'm hip-deep in the Old Testament, proverbs and the five books of psalms and deep into the Exile into Babylon. The OUR center visits are pretty constant now, for me, with the weather going bitter cold, and John doing the shopping every week. I'm also into all the anime and manga stuff, and the Christmas season has gotten it's grips into me as well for all the good and bad of it. Kinda crystallized through several stories I'm experiencing, now, too.

What comes next is something that is just Truth for me, which means it isn't reproducible and may never apply to you and isn't necessarily fact and probably never happened *laughter*... there's this quote I have treasured from a story teller who says, "This may never have happened, but it's still True." I think it encapsulates, for me, what I see as the big difference between Truth and Fact.

I've come to the conclusion that no one deserves to be loved. Period. No one. (Yes, me, too.) And the more powerful, rich, and famous one is the less one probably actually deserves or, even can get someone to love them for themselves rather than for their power, wealth, or fame. Even kids don't *deserve* it as much as they need it, require love to grow into themselves. Which, I think, is why kids are both so easy to love (because they'll accept any love you can give them and don't have any expectations on the forms of love, yet,) and so hard to care for (because they always *need* it).

But, conversely, everyone can choose to love someone else, anyway. Even God.

[Added at 11:35 am] [livejournal.com profile] beckyb made a wonderful reply: "My response was maybe what we deserve is to love." I think she makes the point of what I felt much better than I did. :-) [/Added]

And even if you give love to someone else, you don't "deserve" to get it back, too. That's someone else's choice.

Giving love, being loving is pretty amazing in and of itself, really. And it's something of a gift to have that love accepted as well. Whether or not it's reciprocated, if it's just accepted and appreciated, it can be astonishingly fulfilling in and of itself. Like feeding people at the OUR center, like going to Biloxi to help rebuild people's homes, like shoveling the neighbor's sidewalk, or even volunteering at Jet's classroom and having the kids trust my leading them through a project.

And it's become pretty cool for me, at least, when someone does actually love me back, like a precious gift that I can't deserve, ever, but wow... thank you. There's a lot to say thank you about, now, for me when someone does love me back. Or, for that matter, with the thought or stated belief that God does love me even when I walk away, there's still love being given.

I'm gradually realizing this is a healing thought for me.

I should probably shovel snow more often. *laughter*
liralen: Finch Painting (snowflake)
We've gotten quite a bit of snow in the past few days. Another six inches last night of the powdery stuff. There's pictures on the TV of folks shoulder deep in powder as they ski down the slopes...

But it's meant that we've had to do quite a bit of shoveling of the front walk, the sidewalks leading to the house and the driveway. There's a methodology to it so it's not too hard, and doesn't really require much thought.

But this morning, as I was snowplowing with the shovel and had time to think, a bunch of things kind of came together. At the moment I'm hip-deep in the Old Testament, proverbs and the five books of psalms and deep into the Exile into Babylon. The OUR center visits are pretty constant now, for me, with the weather going bitter cold, and John doing the shopping every week. I'm also into all the anime and manga stuff, and the Christmas season has gotten it's grips into me as well for all the good and bad of it. Kinda crystallized through several stories I'm experiencing, now, too.

What comes next is something that is just Truth for me, which means it isn't reproducible and may never apply to you and isn't necessarily fact and probably never happened *laughter*... there's this quote I have treasured from a story teller who says, "This may never have happened, but it's still True." I think it encapsulates, for me, what I see as the big difference between Truth and Fact.

I've come to the conclusion that no one deserves to be loved. Period. No one. (Yes, me, too.) And the more powerful, rich, and famous one is the less one probably actually deserves or, even can get someone to love them for themselves rather than for their power, wealth, or fame. Even kids don't *deserve* it as much as they need it, require love to grow into themselves. Which, I think, is why kids are both so easy to love (because they'll accept any love you can give them and don't have any expectations on the forms of love, yet,) and so hard to care for (because they always *need* it).

But, conversely, everyone can choose to love someone else, anyway. Even God.

[Added at 11:35 am] [livejournal.com profile] beckyb made a wonderful reply: "My response was maybe what we deserve is to love." I think she makes the point of what I felt much better than I did. :-) [/Added]

And even if you give love to someone else, you don't "deserve" to get it back, too. That's someone else's choice.

Giving love, being loving is pretty amazing in and of itself, really. And it's something of a gift to have that love accepted as well. Whether or not it's reciprocated, if it's just accepted and appreciated, it can be astonishingly fulfilling in and of itself. Like feeding people at the OUR center, like going to Biloxi to help rebuild people's homes, like shoveling the neighbor's sidewalk, or even volunteering at Jet's classroom and having the kids trust my leading them through a project.

And it's become pretty cool for me, at least, when someone does actually love me back, like a precious gift that I can't deserve, ever, but wow... thank you. There's a lot to say thank you about, now, for me when someone does love me back. Or, for that matter, with the thought or stated belief that God does love me even when I walk away, there's still love being given.

I'm gradually realizing this is a healing thought for me.

I should probably shovel snow more often. *laughter*
liralen: Finch Painting (Otter)
John had an early evening meeting at the church, so Jet and I had an evening together.

It was great.

Jet started at a friend's house, playing happily at Chris' until 6. I got some Okami in, but stopped as soon as he came home.

We headed out to Noodles and Company and had dinner. Jet had the buttered noodles with Parmesan and butter. I had the mushroom stroganoff. We shared a plate of six potstickers and a bottle of orange soda. Mmm..

From there we went to the mall and did "Glow Golf". I'm not even quite sure what the place is actually called, but all the putt putt golf bits are painted in florescent paints and the place is lighted only with black lights. Jet loves it, and I enjoy it too for a relaxing evening walk. We spent a good hour wandering through the various holes.

Then, hand in hand, the two of us strolled through the mall.

We stopped at Game Stop and peered at the used PlayStation 2 games and came up with Tak: The Great Juju Challenge. Jet found it quite happily for just $10. He then went up to the cashier and said, "Excuse me, do you have Avatar?" "What platform?" I stepped in, "PlayStation 2, please." They had another used copy of it, but for $18. I thought about it and decided to buy both. We're out of game at the moment, for our PS2, we've played everything through twice on both of the Lego games. I'm on my third run through of Okami, and we've lost count of the Bandicoot runs. Jet and I, between us, have played the Incredibles levels all the way through three times, at least, and Jet's played through the Polar Express for the fifth time. Jax and Dexter got frustrated mid-way through, we may have to revisit it sometime. Sonic is *so* not for the PS2 platform it's not even funny. So it was good to get another couple of E-rated games.

Then we went to the toy store, and strolled around and poked, rolled, and bounced a few things. We ended up by the Klutz books (as always), and I reached for the "How to Make Mini Books" book. Jet asked what it was and when I said, he said he wanted to do that. He wanted to make books, too, and could I please buy it for him to use, too? I couldn't resist both the book *and* him, so I bought it. I have a ton of paper and card stock, and I love accordion books. I keep lusting after the Japanese Moleskine, and the book actually has a way of making a book with pockets in the covers and accordion-style pages that can unfold sequentially as well as in a big strip. Even cooler there's a way to just put a cover on each end and a button and string fastener that holds it together.

Lots of cool ideas. Jet loves his simple staple book and his 'chocolate bar' book, which resides/hides in a chocolate bar "wrapper". His just happens to reside in a box of "Black Pearl" specialty chocolate. I didn't actually have any wrappers. Just chocolate bars in boxes. I guess that says something about my taste in chocolate.

We built those books for him and then we went up to get him ready for bed. It was a comfortable way to wind down afterward. The usual pajama and teeth brushing rituals followed by our traditional three books. I put the HEPA air filter in his room as he'd been pretty stuffy the last couple of days. Maybe we should just get another one, as they're relatively cheap at Target, though the filters are kind of expensive to replace. The good thing was that the day had cooled off so quickly that the house is already in the low 70's, so I was able to close off his room and leave the filter on for a bit. Jet's nose cleared up while we were reading his book and he fell asleep nearly instantly. So I'm glad of the filter, now.

So a very happy, playful evening. I enjoyed Jet a lot and I'm thankful for feeling good enough to do so.
liralen: Finch Painting (Otter)
John had an early evening meeting at the church, so Jet and I had an evening together.

It was great.

Jet started at a friend's house, playing happily at Chris' until 6. I got some Okami in, but stopped as soon as he came home.

We headed out to Noodles and Company and had dinner. Jet had the buttered noodles with Parmesan and butter. I had the mushroom stroganoff. We shared a plate of six potstickers and a bottle of orange soda. Mmm..

From there we went to the mall and did "Glow Golf". I'm not even quite sure what the place is actually called, but all the putt putt golf bits are painted in florescent paints and the place is lighted only with black lights. Jet loves it, and I enjoy it too for a relaxing evening walk. We spent a good hour wandering through the various holes.

Then, hand in hand, the two of us strolled through the mall.

We stopped at Game Stop and peered at the used PlayStation 2 games and came up with Tak: The Great Juju Challenge. Jet found it quite happily for just $10. He then went up to the cashier and said, "Excuse me, do you have Avatar?" "What platform?" I stepped in, "PlayStation 2, please." They had another used copy of it, but for $18. I thought about it and decided to buy both. We're out of game at the moment, for our PS2, we've played everything through twice on both of the Lego games. I'm on my third run through of Okami, and we've lost count of the Bandicoot runs. Jet and I, between us, have played the Incredibles levels all the way through three times, at least, and Jet's played through the Polar Express for the fifth time. Jax and Dexter got frustrated mid-way through, we may have to revisit it sometime. Sonic is *so* not for the PS2 platform it's not even funny. So it was good to get another couple of E-rated games.

Then we went to the toy store, and strolled around and poked, rolled, and bounced a few things. We ended up by the Klutz books (as always), and I reached for the "How to Make Mini Books" book. Jet asked what it was and when I said, he said he wanted to do that. He wanted to make books, too, and could I please buy it for him to use, too? I couldn't resist both the book *and* him, so I bought it. I have a ton of paper and card stock, and I love accordion books. I keep lusting after the Japanese Moleskine, and the book actually has a way of making a book with pockets in the covers and accordion-style pages that can unfold sequentially as well as in a big strip. Even cooler there's a way to just put a cover on each end and a button and string fastener that holds it together.

Lots of cool ideas. Jet loves his simple staple book and his 'chocolate bar' book, which resides/hides in a chocolate bar "wrapper". His just happens to reside in a box of "Black Pearl" specialty chocolate. I didn't actually have any wrappers. Just chocolate bars in boxes. I guess that says something about my taste in chocolate.

We built those books for him and then we went up to get him ready for bed. It was a comfortable way to wind down afterward. The usual pajama and teeth brushing rituals followed by our traditional three books. I put the HEPA air filter in his room as he'd been pretty stuffy the last couple of days. Maybe we should just get another one, as they're relatively cheap at Target, though the filters are kind of expensive to replace. The good thing was that the day had cooled off so quickly that the house is already in the low 70's, so I was able to close off his room and leave the filter on for a bit. Jet's nose cleared up while we were reading his book and he fell asleep nearly instantly. So I'm glad of the filter, now.

So a very happy, playful evening. I enjoyed Jet a lot and I'm thankful for feeling good enough to do so.
liralen: Finch Painting (bat)
I did something unexpected today, and actually enjoyed it more than I thought I would. There's an African american Methodist Episcopalian Church, the first African American formed church in Seattle, near 14th and Madison. There were two very sharply dressed African men in the parking lot directing where to park and asking everyone that arrived if they were there for the 11 am service.

We'd gotten a late start. :-) George had done a beautiful job of making pancakes for everyone, and everyone had enjoyed them greatly with lots of yogurt and fruit. So we had an excuse, with five kids and seven adults.

I planned to just stay in the van. Read a little of Walking On Water and knit a little and maybe write a little while they did the service. There was the feeling that they were going to a performance, to see a bit of American craziness by watching a Gospel service in all it's emotional glory. And I hadn't wanted to just *watch*. If I was going to go into a church, I wanted to worship and to go with a sense of my relationship with God. And I wasn't sure I could in what, for me, was historically a Baptist type setting.

But these were Episcopalians?? I was trying to get it to make sense... so instead of sitting in the van, I decided to go in and try to open my heart to this type of Christianity that had so unsettled me for most of my life.

I'm glad I did. )
liralen: Finch Painting (bat)
I did something unexpected today, and actually enjoyed it more than I thought I would. There's an African american Methodist Episcopalian Church, the first African American formed church in Seattle, near 14th and Madison. There were two very sharply dressed African men in the parking lot directing where to park and asking everyone that arrived if they were there for the 11 am service.

We'd gotten a late start. :-) George had done a beautiful job of making pancakes for everyone, and everyone had enjoyed them greatly with lots of yogurt and fruit. So we had an excuse, with five kids and seven adults.

I planned to just stay in the van. Read a little of Walking On Water and knit a little and maybe write a little while they did the service. There was the feeling that they were going to a performance, to see a bit of American craziness by watching a Gospel service in all it's emotional glory. And I hadn't wanted to just *watch*. If I was going to go into a church, I wanted to worship and to go with a sense of my relationship with God. And I wasn't sure I could in what, for me, was historically a Baptist type setting.

But these were Episcopalians?? I was trying to get it to make sense... so instead of sitting in the van, I decided to go in and try to open my heart to this type of Christianity that had so unsettled me for most of my life.

I'm glad I did. )
liralen: Finch Painting (seven)
I had to get up at 7 to get out the door by 8 in order to make the 10:40 flight home with plenty of margin. Margin is good. I like margin now, after the eating of margin on the way out to Pleasanton. There are a lot worse things than having a leisurely meal and a good break at the airport.

And that's all I had when Carl dropped me of quite in time with all my worst case thoughts. I just had a leisurely breakfast of a Peet's espresso-based latte and a slice of cheese pizza. *grin* It was hot! And tasty!

I flew to DIA, no problem. I took a little time collecting my luggage as I *thought* the BA arrived on the hour and left on the hour, but when I finally found the RTD booth with the actual times, I had three minutes to catch the bus at the West Terminal. Luckily, that was just across a hallway and out the door. Unluckily, I didn't take a few minutes to pick up a lunch to go and I was starving. Still, I made it to the bus in plenty of time, and I had the ten dollar bill I'd saved from the whole Con for the cash-only, no change ride home.

When I called John, though, the half hour change in time had collided with the fact that John had to pick up the kids from the bus. Oops. He and some folks at the OUR center said that there was a bus that I could pick up from Table Mesa and take to Longmont. Right to my door. But I had to get a transfer, as I didn't have the cash to get the next bus, which was a whole $2.75. *grin*

So I got a transfer, and the driver gave me no guff about it at all.

When I got off at Table Mesa Park and Ride, I knew I had just five minutes before the J bus was coming. There were, however, three different pick up areas at the Park and Ride. One at the Park and Ride, and two at Table Mesa Drive. *sigh* So I dragged all my stuff with me to all three areas and didn't see ONE mention of a J line coming through. Hm. So I called the RTD info line and they informed me that the J didn't go here. They did go on Table Mesa, but only *at* Broadway, which was a few miles to the West of where I was standing.

Hm.

I called John and he said that he'd pick up the kids and come and pick me up, as originally planned. So I went back to the Park and Ride, propped my feet up on my suitcase and read The Hallowed Hunt by Bujold. I'd tried reading it immediately after Paladin of Souls, but I'd been so completely disappointed that there wasn't a single character from the previous two novels that I'd given up on it pretty quickly. Now, free of having read nearly anything Bujold for a year or so, I now enjoyed it immensely for itself. It *is* the same world, the same gods, and the same underlying basis of "keeping faith", so it was a very satisfying read.

John and the boys showed up with three cars on their tail, so I wrestled my suitcase in, stumbled in myself, as I am severely sleep deprived by this point and off we went. It wasn't until we got home and I was looking for something from my laptop bag that I realized that I'd just LEFT it on the bench I'd been sitting on.

John just whipped back out the door into the van and back to the Park and Ride, which was a good fifteen to twenty minute drive from home, especially in rush hour. He called me when he got there and found the bag, still half open from when I'd pulled the book out of it, on the bench next to a woman who was sitting on the same bench waiting for a bus.

I never thought it was possible, but no one even touched it the whole forty minutes we were driving back and forth.

Wow.

I am very glad when the world surprises me like that. I am grateful.

I spent most of the evening in a very tired daze. There was a pancake dinner for Maudy Tuesday at the church, combined with an Ash Wednesday marking with the Ashes, which I'll admit I wasn't ready for. The Ashes are for the *next* night, darn it. Mardi Gras should be *happy* all the way through. But so it was.

And Jet was quite content to sit in my lap for the dinner and the whole service afterward. When the games happened, I sat to watch and Jet told me, quite happily, "I'm going to just watch and see what's going on." So he did.

I put Jet to bed that night and it was good to be home again.
liralen: Finch Painting (seven)
I had to get up at 7 to get out the door by 8 in order to make the 10:40 flight home with plenty of margin. Margin is good. I like margin now, after the eating of margin on the way out to Pleasanton. There are a lot worse things than having a leisurely meal and a good break at the airport.

And that's all I had when Carl dropped me of quite in time with all my worst case thoughts. I just had a leisurely breakfast of a Peet's espresso-based latte and a slice of cheese pizza. *grin* It was hot! And tasty!

I flew to DIA, no problem. I took a little time collecting my luggage as I *thought* the BA arrived on the hour and left on the hour, but when I finally found the RTD booth with the actual times, I had three minutes to catch the bus at the West Terminal. Luckily, that was just across a hallway and out the door. Unluckily, I didn't take a few minutes to pick up a lunch to go and I was starving. Still, I made it to the bus in plenty of time, and I had the ten dollar bill I'd saved from the whole Con for the cash-only, no change ride home.

When I called John, though, the half hour change in time had collided with the fact that John had to pick up the kids from the bus. Oops. He and some folks at the OUR center said that there was a bus that I could pick up from Table Mesa and take to Longmont. Right to my door. But I had to get a transfer, as I didn't have the cash to get the next bus, which was a whole $2.75. *grin*

So I got a transfer, and the driver gave me no guff about it at all.

When I got off at Table Mesa Park and Ride, I knew I had just five minutes before the J bus was coming. There were, however, three different pick up areas at the Park and Ride. One at the Park and Ride, and two at Table Mesa Drive. *sigh* So I dragged all my stuff with me to all three areas and didn't see ONE mention of a J line coming through. Hm. So I called the RTD info line and they informed me that the J didn't go here. They did go on Table Mesa, but only *at* Broadway, which was a few miles to the West of where I was standing.

Hm.

I called John and he said that he'd pick up the kids and come and pick me up, as originally planned. So I went back to the Park and Ride, propped my feet up on my suitcase and read The Hallowed Hunt by Bujold. I'd tried reading it immediately after Paladin of Souls, but I'd been so completely disappointed that there wasn't a single character from the previous two novels that I'd given up on it pretty quickly. Now, free of having read nearly anything Bujold for a year or so, I now enjoyed it immensely for itself. It *is* the same world, the same gods, and the same underlying basis of "keeping faith", so it was a very satisfying read.

John and the boys showed up with three cars on their tail, so I wrestled my suitcase in, stumbled in myself, as I am severely sleep deprived by this point and off we went. It wasn't until we got home and I was looking for something from my laptop bag that I realized that I'd just LEFT it on the bench I'd been sitting on.

John just whipped back out the door into the van and back to the Park and Ride, which was a good fifteen to twenty minute drive from home, especially in rush hour. He called me when he got there and found the bag, still half open from when I'd pulled the book out of it, on the bench next to a woman who was sitting on the same bench waiting for a bus.

I never thought it was possible, but no one even touched it the whole forty minutes we were driving back and forth.

Wow.

I am very glad when the world surprises me like that. I am grateful.

I spent most of the evening in a very tired daze. There was a pancake dinner for Maudy Tuesday at the church, combined with an Ash Wednesday marking with the Ashes, which I'll admit I wasn't ready for. The Ashes are for the *next* night, darn it. Mardi Gras should be *happy* all the way through. But so it was.

And Jet was quite content to sit in my lap for the dinner and the whole service afterward. When the games happened, I sat to watch and Jet told me, quite happily, "I'm going to just watch and see what's going on." So he did.

I put Jet to bed that night and it was good to be home again.
liralen: Finch Painting (sheep egg)
One evening it rained really, really hard here. It was late enough in the evening that we'd already opened the house to cool it off after a 95° F day, and the office window was wide open. There's a desk right under that window and every paper on that side of the desk was pretty much a complete loss. I was very sad to see an entire pad of rice paper completely soaked through and pretty much a dead loss. There were other things, like one of Jet's drawings, a few other scraps I'd been saving for scrapbooking and stuff like that.

The blessing was that I'd had two of my calligraphy brushes out, and I've had a hard time getting them really soaked enough to loosen up from tip to base. They were sitting in the rain puddle and had gently, completely, and thoroughly softened up. Yay!! So that was cool.

This evening, we went to the local instantiation of The Texas Roadhouse and had a good dinner there. Jet brought along six pieces of Lego he'd been intrigued with. Just six tiny pieces that he could get to make a "snap" sound and he enjoyed them a lot. Problem was that he left them there when we left. We went back after we'd done a bit of grocery shopping and Jet realized he'd left them there. So he and John went in and found that, sure enough, the cleanup crew hadn't noticed the bitty pieces and probably threw them away with the rest of our trash. Instead, they gave Jet a HUGE Hot Wheels "monster truck" (in Jet terms) out of their lost and found bin. Hee. So Jet is now happily rolling over all the rest of his Legos and his cars with the new monster truck.

This morning I finally finished John's Sun/Moon sweater. I'd gone through the harrowing experience of trying to secure and then cut through the cloth for both arm holes and the neck (which I'll be detailing in a post to [livejournal.com profile] advanced_knit), and then the simple, steady work to get the sleeves set in and finish the very simple I-cord neckband. I was pretty worried, though, as we'd tried it on John a few times and nearly all indications were that it might be too small for him in the body and, on top of that, the sleeves seemed too short. Grr... But the book and EZ's videos said that changes of a few inches are no problem when one blocks pure, wet wool. So I took it on faith and finished the thing.

Then I measured John obsessively, and then dumped the last six month's work into the tub and gave it a quick wash and several thorough rinses and then a spin in the washing machine to get most of the water out. And when I laid it out and pulled the body out WIDE and the sleeves out LONG and then measured it, it was too big!! Hoorah!! Hee.

So I pulled the body a little bit longer, but kept the width I wanted. I widened the sleeves until they were the ideal length for John's shoulder to wrist, and whew... it's now "done". This is just a small picture of the back/moon side of it while it's blocking. )
liralen: Finch Painting (sheep egg)
One evening it rained really, really hard here. It was late enough in the evening that we'd already opened the house to cool it off after a 95° F day, and the office window was wide open. There's a desk right under that window and every paper on that side of the desk was pretty much a complete loss. I was very sad to see an entire pad of rice paper completely soaked through and pretty much a dead loss. There were other things, like one of Jet's drawings, a few other scraps I'd been saving for scrapbooking and stuff like that.

The blessing was that I'd had two of my calligraphy brushes out, and I've had a hard time getting them really soaked enough to loosen up from tip to base. They were sitting in the rain puddle and had gently, completely, and thoroughly softened up. Yay!! So that was cool.

This evening, we went to the local instantiation of The Texas Roadhouse and had a good dinner there. Jet brought along six pieces of Lego he'd been intrigued with. Just six tiny pieces that he could get to make a "snap" sound and he enjoyed them a lot. Problem was that he left them there when we left. We went back after we'd done a bit of grocery shopping and Jet realized he'd left them there. So he and John went in and found that, sure enough, the cleanup crew hadn't noticed the bitty pieces and probably threw them away with the rest of our trash. Instead, they gave Jet a HUGE Hot Wheels "monster truck" (in Jet terms) out of their lost and found bin. Hee. So Jet is now happily rolling over all the rest of his Legos and his cars with the new monster truck.

This morning I finally finished John's Sun/Moon sweater. I'd gone through the harrowing experience of trying to secure and then cut through the cloth for both arm holes and the neck (which I'll be detailing in a post to [livejournal.com profile] advanced_knit), and then the simple, steady work to get the sleeves set in and finish the very simple I-cord neckband. I was pretty worried, though, as we'd tried it on John a few times and nearly all indications were that it might be too small for him in the body and, on top of that, the sleeves seemed too short. Grr... But the book and EZ's videos said that changes of a few inches are no problem when one blocks pure, wet wool. So I took it on faith and finished the thing.

Then I measured John obsessively, and then dumped the last six month's work into the tub and gave it a quick wash and several thorough rinses and then a spin in the washing machine to get most of the water out. And when I laid it out and pulled the body out WIDE and the sleeves out LONG and then measured it, it was too big!! Hoorah!! Hee.

So I pulled the body a little bit longer, but kept the width I wanted. I widened the sleeves until they were the ideal length for John's shoulder to wrist, and whew... it's now "done". This is just a small picture of the back/moon side of it while it's blocking. )
liralen: Finch Painting (dandelion)
We didn't get up early, but we did get out of Chelan pretty quickly once we were up. We just stopped for some espresso and muffins and headed out along a road that wasn't on our maps but was something that the lady in charge of the Apple Inn knew well. She did us two good turns, the first in getting us to the Apple Cup diner and on getting us onto the right road to Grand Coulee Dam.

Read more... )
liralen: Finch Painting (dandelion)
We didn't get up early, but we did get out of Chelan pretty quickly once we were up. We just stopped for some espresso and muffins and headed out along a road that wasn't on our maps but was something that the lady in charge of the Apple Inn knew well. She did us two good turns, the first in getting us to the Apple Cup diner and on getting us onto the right road to Grand Coulee Dam.

Read more... )
liralen: Finch Painting (dandelion)
I bought a cheap battery charger from Sundance Solar. It only does AA batteries, and it takes days to do so, even in the Colorado sun. But it was a proving point for me to peer at the much bigger and faster puppy.

I got it Thursday afternoon, and between Grandpa George and the Jetster, the charger got a lot of peer-at time during the weekend. Between the three of us, we could probably keep the thing pegged at about 160 mAh's for a good 10 hours a day, which would still take the 4 1600 mAh AAs 40 HOURS to get charged up, or 4 days to get a complete charge. Given, however, that those same four 1600 mAh AAs give me a good month's worth of pictures from my digital camera, it seems worth it to do. They'll also run my radio, clocks, weather station, and remotes for just about ever. Free charge, basically, past the cost of the charger, which I basically bought as a toy out of my little budget.

And the 1600 mAh AAs were only $1.45 a piece, compared to the $4 a piece I was paying for the Ray-o-vac NiMhs. It always took me a while to get the courage up to get a four pack of those; but being able to recharge them about 1000 times was definitely worth it in the long run compared to disposables. However, it was hard to get hit with that initial cost. But at $1.45 a pop, it's eeeeasy.

The weekend was a little crazy. )
liralen: Finch Painting (dandelion)
I bought a cheap battery charger from Sundance Solar. It only does AA batteries, and it takes days to do so, even in the Colorado sun. But it was a proving point for me to peer at the much bigger and faster puppy.

I got it Thursday afternoon, and between Grandpa George and the Jetster, the charger got a lot of peer-at time during the weekend. Between the three of us, we could probably keep the thing pegged at about 160 mAh's for a good 10 hours a day, which would still take the 4 1600 mAh AAs 40 HOURS to get charged up, or 4 days to get a complete charge. Given, however, that those same four 1600 mAh AAs give me a good month's worth of pictures from my digital camera, it seems worth it to do. They'll also run my radio, clocks, weather station, and remotes for just about ever. Free charge, basically, past the cost of the charger, which I basically bought as a toy out of my little budget.

And the 1600 mAh AAs were only $1.45 a piece, compared to the $4 a piece I was paying for the Ray-o-vac NiMhs. It always took me a while to get the courage up to get a four pack of those; but being able to recharge them about 1000 times was definitely worth it in the long run compared to disposables. However, it was hard to get hit with that initial cost. But at $1.45 a pop, it's eeeeasy.

The weekend was a little crazy. )

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