Working Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Today, I will finish with Rocky Start and hand it back to Bob with glad cries of relief. And then he’ll send me Very Nice Funerals. It’s a cycle.

What did you work on this week?

61 thoughts on “Working Wednesday, March 27, 2024

  1. I worked on my diet. But I didn’t work very hard. I’m too satisfied with being under 280 all week. That still leaves me just 50 kilograms overweight. Calling it “8 stone” doesn’t make it feel any better, or not much. At the best point of my dieting life, I was 40 pounds or about 3 stone lighter, and I’d be so much happier there now. Dieting is forever and ends in death.

    1. Just about everything ends in death, Gary. It’s the quality of life in between that is important, I think. And even that is mostly out of our control. Good luck with your efforts.

        1. Gary, I know I’ve bombarded you with unasked for diet advice. But that’s hardly going to stop me now. 😉

          These days I’ve made a habit of forgiving myself. So I ate too much of the wrong stuff? It cost me 5 pounds. Okay, with the socializing, the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream sales, and whatever, what’s my plan for taking off those 5 pounds? Let’s start.

          1. I am very forgiving. See my post? ” I’m too satisfied with being under 280 all week.” That shouldn’t be mistaken for dissatisfaction. This week, I didn’t just have a “go-to-hell-day,” I finished boxes of chocolate covered everything, ate all my mac-n-cheese bowls, had several double cheeseburgers, and broiled a NY Strip steak wrapped in bacon with tater tots on the side and I’m making myself hungry again. I also drank like a quart of hot cocoa and a quart of root beer and a couple cans of diet coke. I forgave me.

            If at first you don’t succeed, you’re probably dieting.

            Never give up! Never surrender!

            What doesn’t kill me must be chocolate.


    2. You got this. Elizabeth is right. Forgiveness is key, and small wins are just as, if not more, important than big wins because they’re a bit easier to get to, just as satisfying, and they add up.

  2. I rewrote and resubmitted a new book proposal to my editor at Llewellyn, so I have two sitting on her desk right now. I consider it nothing short of a miracle that I continue to come up with new ideas, since book #18 will be out next year. I’m still waiting for a definite answer, but it looks pretty good. I will confess, it was kind of nice to have a few days without needing to work on something with a deadline.

    Woke up to find a large puddle of water in the kitchen. After looking suspiciously at the cats, I traced it to the dishwasher. I rarely use it, since it is just me, but water goes from the sink through the dishwasher (something I found out the hard way when I had a rat incursion and ended up having to replace a beautiful floating floor). I’m guessing it is either a rotted connection or mice. So now I have a text in to my plumber. In the meanwhile, the other work at my house is at a standstill because my contractor has both the flu and the stomach bug that’s been going around. So today is going to be work, and no work.

      1. Any large puddle of liquid, I immediately look suspiciously at the cats. Mind you, this one was so large, I was also a bit concerned. Any cat who could have produced that amount of water would definitely have had issues…

        1. When our cat Lord Fluffypants leaves any bodily output (furballs or vomited crunchies, usually) he always pulls throw rugs or other movable objects over it in an attempt to cover it properly. So our sign is always one rug curled over another. Although he knows perfectly well where the litterbox and/or the cat door are, so I guess a gradually sensed need-to-pee goes there, while the sudden urgent signals are the ones leading to rug curling.

          1. If they throw-up on the rug, it does not splash on their feet. Cats are such tidy creatures. 🐈 🐈‍⬛ 🐈 🐈‍⬛ 🐈‍⬛

          2. Years ago, one of my cats would run to the litter box if she had a hairball or other to barf up.

            Sweet little girl named Bartles. Her brother was named Jaymes and lived to be 20.
            (Yes, they were born in 1985, the year Bartles and Jaymes was introduced.)

          3. My cats always wanted to throw up on rugs/carpet. They’d make a run for it if they started horking.

    1. Good luck with that. I never expected my dishwasher problem to become such a saga. I hope yours is a simple thing.

  3. I finished a set of slipcovers for my dining room chairs and extra cushion covers for a chair and tabletop the cats like to lay on. The problem is cleaning cushions of cat hair is much harder than removable slipcovers you can throw in the wash. This isn’t a new problem, just one I’m finally ready to deal with. I’m feeling pretty satisfied with myself. 😉

    This afternoon, I’m going to Philadelphia to film a commercial as a background actor in a casino. My granddaughter (age 7) said, “But you don’t gamble!” I said, “No, but you don’t have to normally do something you pretend to do in a commercial.” She said, “Then I could be in a commercial!” A star is born.

    1. When I bought a new vacuum, it came with a pet brush that very effectively picked up most of all the dog’s fur from the sofa. Well worth the money for that gadget.

    2. I keep seeing popup ads for a product called “uproot clean,” which comes in long-handle size for rugs, hand-held size for cleaning surfaces at waist height or so, and sort of flea comb size, for I guess cleaning smaller things or maybe things in small spaces? I’ve never used one, but the examples show someone pulling pet hair out of carpets that did not have visible surface pet hair, yet it got swept up by the tiny teeth in these devices.

      I can’t recommend it first hand, but it looks interesting

  4. Yesterday I made meatballs to put in the freezer for future dinners also hamburger patties the same with a pound leftover Hamburg for anything else. But for dinner last night I made ham and potato scalloped in a cheesy cream sauce and baked in the oven that did not curdle. That’s the one I was excited about. So many times I’ve been disappointed with the final results that I stopped making it. Now to remember what I did.

    I don’t know if I read it here or somewhere else, but someone once said that if they didn’t have doctor’s appointments, they would never leave the house. And today it is me. So, I’ll be off to the dermatologist in a little while. I put myself on a wait list and got this appointment ahead of my annual one in two months.

    1. Whelp! I’m now scheduled for a little light day surgery tomorrow. Nothing to worry about. On the way home we stopped at the library so I could pick up a book I’ve had on hold since last November.

      1. I’m surprised they held the book for you for so long. I think I get 2 weeks at my library.

  5. I’m in the middle still of what’s turned out to be a major job in the garden. I discovered my three-year-old turf heap has become a pillar of clay that’s challenging to dig out and bag up or spread around. So I’m waiting for another dry spell, when I’ll switch back to digging out the old compost next to the clay and mulching the rest of the garden. Then I plan to remove the old panels I made the bin from, plus the bricks they’re standing on and four concrete slabs in front, dig out the rubble under the slabs, and dig in the clay soil that’ll be standing there handily. I’m pacing myself because I don’t want to do my back in.

    But I have spread quite a lot of compost and soil already, in the process remaking a small bed in an old brick cold frame that’s now ready for replanting. On rainy days I’ve been proof-reading: will finish today. Then I need to clean and tidy the house, ready for the friend who’s coming on Friday. And hope the kitchen cold tap doesn’t seize up completely: like Deb, I’m waiting on the plumber. But I have got a garden tap nearby, so I daresay we’ll manage.

  6. Yay more books! ♥️
    I have been working on retirement plans.
    I’m trying to figure out when to start. Truly Argh!

  7. I found my mermaids! I collaged them years ago from a reproduction Sears and Roebuck catalog: black and white ladies modelling corsets for top and drawings from a 1950s fish identification book in color for the bottom. I had decided that I wanted to try to have stickers made and couldn’t find them.

    Well, they were exactly where the should have been, where I already looked in my wreck of a studio. I just didn’t see them back in January. I blame holiday depression/mental fog. Anyway, I got them photographed and sent in to two different sticker companies. They should be arriving soon.

    Otherwise, I am buying things, which is not so good. I went to go buy my aunt an opossum tea towel from Jackalope Jane, an artist who hand prints all her own designs and ended up buying a tshirt, a dress and a sweatshirt as well for me. Good intentions and all that. And then For Strange Women, a small, clean perfumer who I like is discontinuing several scents, Labyrinth, Antique Settee and changing the formula for Persephone. So I had to get those before they were gone. And then a Hot Topic ad popped up with a Totoro dress which I lusted after but did not buy. I bought the jacket instead as something that is more practical; it was also on sale. But still. My only consolation is that I haven’t bought expensive and impractical shoes yet. That is a true sign of depression spending.

  8. I dropped off some quilts with a new longarm quilter. I should get them back next week and I am nervous about how they are going to come out. My previous quilter, who I love, is 500 miles away so I hope the new one does a good job because I have a backlog of quilts to finish.

  9. I got the garden dug, just in time to plant broccoli, which I will do today. I had moved “Dig garden” from week to week on the calendar since before Christmas and there was always something more urgent. But now it’s done! The parts I had mulched with cardboard in the fall were “stick a (garden) fork in it, it’s done” loose and friable. I am thrilled.

  10. Monday evening, one of my critique groups read the ending of the first book in my pentology and they said it was a good ending! (I’m already well into Book 2 as far as my writing goes.) So pleased I’m on the right track.

  11. I have been dealing with sciatica, so I’ve had several days spent flat out on the bed. It’s improving, but desk time is quite limited. I’m getting a little cranky. I’ve got a new phone, I dropped the old one right on the asphalt, but I’ve got insurance, because I do drop things with fair regularity. Now I need to enter passwords, etc., not a big deal, but like I said, I’m already cranky.
    On the bright side, I learned how to put air in my tires yesterday; it only took about 4 minutes per tire. At least no one at the garage came out to point and laugh. I’m sure I’ll improve.

    1. Knowing how to measure and fill tires with air is very useful, along with checking and topping off the oil. I used to change flat tires when I drove Saturns or Ford Escorts.

  12. I started on my taxes, which requires a lot of sorting and adding up totals. Not fun.

  13. We had rain plus a windstorm on Saturday, which prompted me to get outside Sunday morning to trim back the bougainvillea, which had arms clawing at the fabric canopy over our little backdoor shelter. Well, that led to an hour of Extreme Trimming, including the laborious liberation of a metal trellis from the westernmost of my 3 bougainvillea plants. Once upon a time, that trellis was needed for support. The plant was about to rip it out of the ground entirely. And now the plant is severely insulted, but we got some more rain Sunday evening and have had sun since, so I predict rapid recovery and defiant color.

    Also wrote 2 chapters of the novel-in-progress and digitized a drawer full of ancient college & grad school ephemera. Have decided that one of the best things about college was that when you did well, they rewarded you. Even if it was just with induction into some ‘honor society’ and putting your name in the honors day program. Workplaces need more structure for rewarding those who do well, vs punishing those who screw up.

    And one of the best things about writing is that eventually, you have a book. 🙂

    1. Hmm. Back in the Dark Ages, and a lot of grade inflation ago (3.25 on a 4-point scale got you on the Dean’s List) when I was in college, I concluded that if I put in a decent effort I would get either an A or a B, but that there was no logic at all to getting the A rather than the B. So I pretty much stopped worrying about grades. This was a drastic mental shift from HS, where effort could get me the A, at least in academic subjects (not band or phys ed).

      (I did mostly or always make the Dean’s List in college, but this was regarded as no big deal at the school. It appeared on my transcript, I think, but I’m not sure it was even publicly posted anywhere. )

      1. I had a full scholarship and needed to keep it, so my grades were important. Also I wanted to go to grad school. And also my mother was a teacher and both parents had master’s degrees. There were Expectations. 🙂

        1. My dad was a professor and my mom was a grad student who became a prof my junior year in college . BIG expectations .

    2. ‘Defiant colour’ is such an apt description as I look out my kitchen window at the almost overly bright pink bougainvillea on the back fence which has gone beyond overgrown to downright ramshackle. Its refusal to grow to the right despite numerous enticements, whilst a little frustrating, does amuse me. Just doing its own thing 🙃.

  14. Four job interviews in three days this week, as I type I have one left to go. So far only one scheduled for next week, but I have three more days to go, so we’ll see. I actually really liked one of the jobs–I note I haven’t actually wanted anything else I’ve applied for–but who knows there. Onward. I’m still waiting on my current org job–they are working on compensation, I’m told. And I finally got a job counselor appointment set up for next week.

    I note next week’s interview wants me to make a PowerPoint on how to make a PB&J.

    Medicalwise, I flunked a sleep study this week because I could not sleep the required 5-6 hours to tell if I have sleep apnea (I don’t think I do, though, as anyone who’s shared a room with me has not complained that I snore), bleah. They insisted I return the device at the crack of dawn and I wake up hours before the alarm goes off if I have to get up early, so I got four hours of sleep and was in a brain fog driving, awesome. I have to get my nose looked at today as well.

    Playwise, started 12 Angry Jurors. I got the smallest and least part in it, which I am not happy about. I was reading on my phone during the first table read because I was so bored. I complained about my total lack of lines (I have very, very few and pointed out I seriously may pass out from boredom at the table since I have 20 pages before I say anything and then usually it’s another 10+ pages before I have one line again) and the director is inserting a few he’s making up for me, so that’s nice. I was also not happy at my character being described as “slow witted” (for someone who probably has undiagnosable ADHD? Come onnnnnn), but he’s letting me play it more like myself, thank god. I can also knit/crochet during this show, seriously, so that helps.

    1. Hi Jennifer —

      What was the job that you liked? I’m very curious. That’s great news!

      Do you really want to do this play? Personally, I’m charmed by the Madame-DeFarge-knitting-on-stage idea. What are the playwright’s and director’s thoughts about this character?

      In real life, the nurse assigned when I was in labor with my son defiantly sat and knitted, refusing to believe me when I said the baby was coming. My husband saw the baby coming — The Knitter still refused to budge — so my husband ran out into the hall and grabbed a resident. All the resident had to do was catch my son. But we still talk about Madame Defarge.

    2. They put the “slow witted” juror in there to try to show how the lawyer needs to pitch his/her questions and arguments in a variety of different ways, not to comment directly on you. And if the number of roles to be cast was so close to the number of people available, the director may not have had much wiggle room. However, the added lines could improve things quite a bit.
      A friend of mine once asked me to do a walk on in a play he was directing because I was the right age and sex. I played a high school girl who was being harangued by her mother from one side of the stage to the other. The part had exactly 4 lines: 2 Oh, Mothers and 2 Yes, Mothers. The woman who played my mother was another friend of the director who had a lot of experience in little theatre and made up her own lines, always ending with something like, “And don’t think I didn’t see you and the Farnsworth boy out in the gazebo!” to which I’d reply, “I’m sure you DID, Mother!”
      I had a schedule conflict for one of the performances and had to show another girl the 2 walk throughs so that she could do them while I was away. I didn’t give her the last line because it wasn’t in the script. However, when the director saw my replacement do it as written, he had her put the added line back in. It was only one line, but it made the scene a little less boring. And it came about because Maddie, the actress who played my mother, had left me the perfect amount of space and time before I got to the wings. If the lines they add for you are as well chosen as Maddie’s were, they can help a lot. Good luck.

    3. I’m a technical writer. The PB&J assignment is a good way to show all kinds of good stuff about how you think, how detail oriented you are, how well you write to inform, etc.
      As a musician, I’m able to be quite detail-oriented and clear when I write, because my musical training has sharpened that ability.
      As an actor, you are used to looking at situations, relationships, and information from multiple angles, and you are used to looking at where a scene is going. In case you need the encouragement, this assignment is something you’re probably good at.

  15. I got my sewing machine back from the shop and proceeded to requilt the black / teal eight-pointed star. The quilting shows so much better now. (Shass – this is the same quilt as I described before, but it now has thicker thread for the quilted star part, so that the color shows up against the black background).

    I also have been working on a crochet blanket started several years ago, and the knitted scarf I started after Christmas, switching back and forth depending on how much time I have available. I would like to take the scarf with me on my trip next week, so I’m working toward finishing up the current skein so I can take a fresh one.

    Meanwhile work work has been amazingly busy. I’m looking forward to my vacation at the end of next week!

    1. Oh that’s excellent! I was a bit worried that the additional color would detract from the effect of the bright central star against a calm background, but it doesn’t at all. It’s like a nice whispered echo of the star motif. Very nice!

    2. Ooh, I love how the teal thread adds more attention to the quilting and mirrors the teal color! It makes the quilt look more balanced.

  16. I’ll have two days off (just before and after the Easter holidays). Which means I have to finish stuff now otherwise it will just accumulate next week and I’m already behind with a very important report. So at 6 pm I’m still sitting in the office. Grrrr.

    The days off are reserved for getting stuff done that still need doing after the move.


    On the bright side, hubby is home on vacation, too. Today he managed to get us tickets for the next home games of the playoffs (semi-finals) for our local hockey team.
    Plus he confessed he’s thrilled that he was able to re-kindle his love for the game, since I got addicted to hockey as well 🙂 Who knew??
    And dd is definitely hooked by now. And thrilled to come along.

    Now I only hope that our team won’t have to face the team I like least…

  17. Plan a today was laundry so, of course, I am doing anything but.

    Specifically I am pulling old tech from various places throughout the house with plans for getting rid of it.

    Last week was gathering info week. This week is acting on that info. Haven’t got far.

    I started back in walking in the pool today. It was bliss.

    Not much else happening.

  18. I am not really sure what I achieved this week, but it seemed to involve lots of both running around and procrastinating.

    I did manage to buy extra chocolate to enjoy at the weekend if my Easter egg isn’t enough.
    And I’m looking forward to a four day weekend in which I aim to complete personal admin tasks I have been putting off for months (!). This will require limiting my reading time…

  19. I managed to find reasons not to do my library and grocery run either Monday or Tuesday, so I’m trying hard today, despite the drizzle. This grocery doesn’t bag and it’s advisable to bring your own rather than buy their overpriced bags. I generally bag as I load the car, but today I figure I’d best bring my bags inside and do it in the store (there is a provided area), out of the rain. If I manage to post on my week at all, it will be late in the day.

    1. I’m not going to manage a full Wednesday post today (nearly my cutoff time for posting without it interfering with getting to sleep). But I did get my errands done. There were plenty of Easter hams still to be had, although I would have gotten a bit smaller one if I could have. Still, I have found that frozen ham keeps for months (contrary to what the cookbooks say) and I like soups using ham. The forecasted hike in chocolate-candy prices seems not to have hit yet, at least relative to Christmas prices.

      I did do my bagging inside the store, but a gap between showers even gave me time to rearrange things better. Rain started again as soon as I headed from grocery toward the library, though.

  20. I handed in a book to my editor on Monday, which was a re-negotiated deadline, so basically, a month late. Yesterday and today, I’ve been catching up on business and life admin that was put on hold while I finished the damn book.

    I had a hair appt this morning, and since I was already out of the house on a miserable and rainy day, made a trek to the grocery store as well. Then I came home to do a couple of hours of author business, and I’m already out of steam. I should make some appts like an eye exam, etc., but I think I’ll save that excitement for tomorrow and spend the rest of the afternoon reading instead.

  21. My first entry on Wednesday’s topic, though I’ve done so on Thursday’s, reading and books being easy to write about.

    I’m so impressed by all the quilting (e.g., Nancy H., Chachal), job searching (e.g., Jennifer), proposals/repairs (e.g., Deborah) and gardening (e.g., Jane), you all do on a regular basis. I have plans… and you inspire me.

    Currently, I’m doing my taxes, not too arduous, I just forget from year to year what I’ve figured out before. And marking: every year they seem to develop a new way of posting and giving feedback. But final marks are a harbinger of the start of the new term (there’s at least ten days in between terms).

    No gardening yet, sadly. Too cold, though the snow has almost melted. Jane, I do love to hear about the progress you are making with your yard/allotment. I hope you will post photos as it flourishes this year.

    1. Thanks, Beth. I’m sure I’ll be posting on Instagram once I’ve made the new bed. I’m going to a plant fair on Friday, so hope to find some good stuff there – though I’ve just looked through my pictures from last summer, and there’s not much space. I always think I’ve got lots of gaps, but I forget how much everything grows in the next couple of months. Still, I’ve got some pots and the two new beds . . . (Oh, and my allotment, where I want to grow more flowers for cutting.)

  22. It’s too miserable out today to be energetic. But, Jenny, you had been wondering what kind of weapons could be fashioned from knitting needles and I wanted to bring Killers of a Certain Age to your attention, specifically location 3038. These ladies would fit right in with the Rocky Start residents.

  23. Yesterday I had a very productive day at the day job, just over 100 audio minutes and it was the first time I hit that particular milestone in a long time. Today is looking to be a little slower but I’m working and feeling good about it.

    The store is closed for Good Friday, and we all get paid for that which is nice.

    On Sunday we went to Edmonton for dinner theatre, well brunch theatre. Our friend Sheryl was in town promoting her and her writing partner’s gardening book series at the Edmonton Hort Society Seedy Sunday event. We were hoping to have supper with her but the timing didn’t add up, which was disappointing. Monday morning they were on Global News doing a bit about getting your garden ready for spring so that was pretty cool.

    I was finally able to string together 2 excellent sleeps in a row, last night was not as good as the first 2 but I feel human again and not quite so resentful of the dogs waking me up. It’s okay if they genuinely have to go potty but if they want to just sit on the steps and sniff the air, I get a little salty. Like Lot’s wife kinda salty.

    Monday I took my car to get a new windshield. I was supposed to go last week but the weather was crappy and I was so tired, I just called and changed the appointment.

    Here’s hoping for a good sleep again tonight, Paul is starting night shift tomorrow and those are never good rests.

  24. I signed up for the Los Angeles Festival of Books, did a bunch of tax returns. got invited to Celebrity Family Feud with Ronald and 4 other Jury Duty cast members, (whee!!!) filled out that paperwork, did a couple of auditions, visited my agent and my managers,
    Baby-sat some. Ordered books for the festival. I think I did other stuff but I can’t remember. I need to go back to taxes. Blessings

  25. I’ve finally started on my ‘pass some of these books on to other people so they can enjoy them instead of hoarding them’ project. Our library has a major book sale fund raiser soon so I’ve got to get a move on. So far I’ve gotten 4 out of 8 previously sorted books from the attic to the first floor without going through the again. Then I’ll sort some more.

    Went to a mercifully short Election Board meeting where I had little to say but other people did talk at length about non-issue issues. Don’t know if they don’t understand the process or they’re just throwing anti-election shade. It’s hard to tell sometimes.

  26. K2 walked into the living room this weekend, saw me on the computer and with great delight and excitement asked me if I was writing a book!
    The look of disappointment on his face…

    Work has been very busy catching up from my week off last week and doing all the regular month-end stuff.

    This weekend is more tax returns.
    But now I have a motivator for writing, so also writing.
    And salad prep for lunches next week. And maybe plant some things.

  27. I finished the PMI Agile Hybrid course. I totally failed the practice quiz because the course hadn’t mentioned most of what the quiz was on. I’ll take try again before taking the actual certification test.

    I got my article written, submitted, returned, revised, and resubmitted. Very happy about that.

    I started our taxes.

    I also sewed many eyeglass cases for a charity. I got a quilt of mine quilted and bound, and I took in 4 customer quilts to longarm. This is the quilt I finished with an easy overall

    OOH! and I got to see my newest “nephew” – he’s a Siberian kitten that’s hypoallergenic. Sadly, I only got to see him on Zoom and IG, but he’s SOOO cute!

  28. Doing another draft of the adult novel. I had some really helpful feedback from a dramaturg friend (dramaturgs are SO GOOD at story stuff), so I’ve got lots to work on. But it made me realise how much I love this process: getting feedback, thinking I’ll never be able to solve the problem, sitting down the next day with a pen and paper … and solutions start to jump out at me.

    The creative process is a joy and a delight.

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