omorka: (Spenglerian Bad)
Oh, look. Flash flood warnings. Again. In early August, of all times.

First cicada was about four days ago; I just keep forgetting to make note of it.
omorka: (Dryad)
First cicada in full song: approximately 8 PM today.

Also my first day back at work after summer break, but I'll talk about that later.
omorka: (Dryad)
First cicada in full song, 8/25/14 at 8:01 PM. Literally minutes after getting the notice that Cristobal had been upgraded to a Category 1 on my phone. Summer is finally starting to unwind.

I've been hearing cicadas doing the low slow warm-up buzz since mid-July, but this was the first one doing the full-blown mating call. Wonder what took them so long?
omorka: (Dryad)
The dirge of summer, starting at 7:50 on August 18. A little late this year. (I'd heard a just-emerged one doing the warm-up buzz a few days ago, but not the actual dirge-drone.)

Wow, he's loud, too.

(Also, I started the song in the music tag for the line "Summer is over, I can count the cost," but I haven't listened to it for over a year, and I'd forgotten how good a song it is. Squeeze is just awesome, man.)
omorka: (Dryad)
First cicada at approximately 8:05 pm.

Summer's dirge comes early this year. Somehow, I suspect it will bea long, agonizing death.
omorka: (Dryad)
First cicada at approximately 8:05 pm.

Summer's dirge comes early this year. Somehow, I suspect it will bea long, agonizing death.
omorka: (Dryad)
First cicada at approximately 8:05 pm.

Summer's dirge comes early this year. Somehow, I suspect it will bea long, agonizing death.
omorka: (Dryad)
It is a measure of how much the MIL's injury, partial recovery, sudden decline, and death have taken up of my life that I failed to note, either here or elsewhere, the first cicada. It was over a week ago at this point.

Tomorrow we'll discuss celebrating the Harvest. This may be tough.
omorka: (Dryad)
It is a measure of how much the MIL's injury, partial recovery, sudden decline, and death have taken up of my life that I failed to note, either here or elsewhere, the first cicada. It was over a week ago at this point.

Tomorrow we'll discuss celebrating the Harvest. This may be tough.
omorka: (Default)
Magnolia grandiflora

Oldest and wisest of flowers, you have watched me throughout my life.

When wisteria and azalea have fallen, when dogwood's blossoms have dropped to the forest floor, before crepe myrtle tosses its petal confetti across the pavement, you spread your palm-sized petals open to the sky and wind.

Your scent is sharp, not sweet - bracing, it wakes memory in me.

Your blossoms are broad, faces waving from tree branch, white and bright in the darkest day, holding light and water in equal measure with equal ease.

In your bloom-heart you carry the evidence of your ancientness, the taut cone that betrays, along with the evergreeenness of your leaves, your ancestry.

And in the fall, those cones will drop, red-berried and spice-smelling, to the ground, to mark the end of summer as your white petals and tart scent mark its beginning.

How could I ever live where your roots do not reach? What sky could I live under that your platter-leaves do not shade?

Wisteria, magnolia, sunflower - mark for me the passage of the light, until fall equinox delivers me again to the blessed darkness. So mote it be.
omorka: (Default)
Magnolia grandiflora

Oldest and wisest of flowers, you have watched me throughout my life.

When wisteria and azalea have fallen, when dogwood's blossoms have dropped to the forest floor, before crepe myrtle tosses its petal confetti across the pavement, you spread your palm-sized petals open to the sky and wind.

Your scent is sharp, not sweet - bracing, it wakes memory in me.

Your blossoms are broad, faces waving from tree branch, white and bright in the darkest day, holding light and water in equal measure with equal ease.

In your bloom-heart you carry the evidence of your ancientness, the taut cone that betrays, along with the evergreeenness of your leaves, your ancestry.

And in the fall, those cones will drop, red-berried and spice-smelling, to the ground, to mark the end of summer as your white petals and tart scent mark its beginning.

How could I ever live where your roots do not reach? What sky could I live under that your platter-leaves do not shade?

Wisteria, magnolia, sunflower - mark for me the passage of the light, until fall equinox delivers me again to the blessed darkness. So mote it be.
omorka: (Default)
Well, the first half of October went fine. I suppose that should have been a warning . . .

I left school at 4:30 (about an hour earlier than usual, for me) on Monday with a raging sore throat, a skullsplitting headache, and a 101.3° fever. I never run fevers, not since I was a small child - the last time I ran a real one was during that really ugly ear infection in high school. Tuesday it was 102.2°, and I'd started a deep chest cough as well; I called in sick.

During the day Tuesday it dropped down to 100.6° and then went back up. I called in a sub again, thinking I'd cancel if I felt better in the morning. I also tried to call RR, hoping she could run something off for my kids, but I couldn't get hold of her. Ms. Mac called me; she was out sick too. Great. In the morning I was back up to 102°; I called Ms. H to clarify my instructions for the sub (which it turned out was a good idea; she hadn't quite understood my message) and found out that RR had been working short days - her mother is in the hospital again.

I called the clinic, since the Tylenol bottle says not to take it for fever reduction for more than three days without consulting a doctor. The triage nurse was very nice, and worked me in at 10 am for my usual doctor (a very nice, short Slavic woman; my only complaint is that she keeps her fingernails too long). She made a diagnosis of a respiratory virus, bronchitis, and possible strep throat, and prescribed me the atom-bomb antibiotic (500 mg! Ia!) and guaifenesin to clear the mucus out. She also forbade me to go back to work until Monday. I came home, called in a sub for Thursday and Friday, slept for two hours while the Spouse picked up the prescriptions and headed in to work, and took the atom bomb with a little soup.

I'm feeling a little better today - the pressure in the ears is gone, and the headache is almost gone. My temp isn't normal, but it's back in the double digits. The cough seems to be getting a little worse, but that's partly because it's gotten a lot more productive. I need to get the Spouse to get me some live-culture yogurt to counteract the inevitable side effects of this sort of antibiotic. RR finally called me back, and she and Mr. H have gotten something at least marginally useful run off for my kids to do - we'll be behind, but at least the week won't be a total wash.

Fortunately, after being under the weather (literally even) all during CMA, the Spouse seems to be doing okay now. I'm going to blame the stupid fire ants; if they hadn't bitten me and lowered my resistance, I wouldn't have gotten this sick. May they all drown in this rain, which shows no signs of letting up until next Tuesday.

Other than the bugs, rain, and mud, I did manage to have a good event at CMA. All the rituals I attended were great except for size issues (one much larger and two much smaller than anticipated). Even the last-minute venue change on Saturday's didn't affect it as badly as I think we all expected. I wish I'd had more singers, but these things happen. And, oh, the ring around the Moon that first night was almost worth all the rain by itself . . . I've had more fun events, and more spiritual ones, but I think this one was a good balance. I just wish I could have done more, and that we could get our hands on a couple swarms of those gnat-sized South American wasps that lay their eggs in fire ants' brains.

At least the MIL has her own car again, even if she did insist on taking us to CMA and picking us up to prove that it existed. (Hey, we didn't have to worry about being stuck in the mud, at least.) We're no longer inextricably linked to her schedule, which was a good thing when the Spouse had to take me to the clinic.

I'm not going to make either the Beans Howl-O-Week or the Witches' Ball this weekend - the smoke (hey! something else I can blame for lowering my resistance! inconsiderate smokers!) would kill me right now.

We finally finished _Princess Nine_ on Tuesday night. Very powerful ending, indeed. A number of the otaku are complaining that it wasn't upbeat enough; I'm more disturbed by the inherent sexism in the setup of the final showdown. But those are both minor issues. The same otaku are calling for ADV to get a second season (probably only 13 episodes) produced; unless they're going to develop the characters of the "minor" members of the team more, I'd be just as happy to let things lie, but I would like to see those characters get more screen time. Fanfic ahoy, I guess . . .
omorka: (Default)
Well, the first half of October went fine. I suppose that should have been a warning . . .

I left school at 4:30 (about an hour earlier than usual, for me) on Monday with a raging sore throat, a skullsplitting headache, and a 101.3° fever. I never run fevers, not since I was a small child - the last time I ran a real one was during that really ugly ear infection in high school. Tuesday it was 102.2°, and I'd started a deep chest cough as well; I called in sick.

During the day Tuesday it dropped down to 100.6° and then went back up. I called in a sub again, thinking I'd cancel if I felt better in the morning. I also tried to call RR, hoping she could run something off for my kids, but I couldn't get hold of her. Ms. Mac called me; she was out sick too. Great. In the morning I was back up to 102°; I called Ms. H to clarify my instructions for the sub (which it turned out was a good idea; she hadn't quite understood my message) and found out that RR had been working short days - her mother is in the hospital again.

I called the clinic, since the Tylenol bottle says not to take it for fever reduction for more than three days without consulting a doctor. The triage nurse was very nice, and worked me in at 10 am for my usual doctor (a very nice, short Slavic woman; my only complaint is that she keeps her fingernails too long). She made a diagnosis of a respiratory virus, bronchitis, and possible strep throat, and prescribed me the atom-bomb antibiotic (500 mg! Ia!) and guaifenesin to clear the mucus out. She also forbade me to go back to work until Monday. I came home, called in a sub for Thursday and Friday, slept for two hours while the Spouse picked up the prescriptions and headed in to work, and took the atom bomb with a little soup.

I'm feeling a little better today - the pressure in the ears is gone, and the headache is almost gone. My temp isn't normal, but it's back in the double digits. The cough seems to be getting a little worse, but that's partly because it's gotten a lot more productive. I need to get the Spouse to get me some live-culture yogurt to counteract the inevitable side effects of this sort of antibiotic. RR finally called me back, and she and Mr. H have gotten something at least marginally useful run off for my kids to do - we'll be behind, but at least the week won't be a total wash.

Fortunately, after being under the weather (literally even) all during CMA, the Spouse seems to be doing okay now. I'm going to blame the stupid fire ants; if they hadn't bitten me and lowered my resistance, I wouldn't have gotten this sick. May they all drown in this rain, which shows no signs of letting up until next Tuesday.

Other than the bugs, rain, and mud, I did manage to have a good event at CMA. All the rituals I attended were great except for size issues (one much larger and two much smaller than anticipated). Even the last-minute venue change on Saturday's didn't affect it as badly as I think we all expected. I wish I'd had more singers, but these things happen. And, oh, the ring around the Moon that first night was almost worth all the rain by itself . . . I've had more fun events, and more spiritual ones, but I think this one was a good balance. I just wish I could have done more, and that we could get our hands on a couple swarms of those gnat-sized South American wasps that lay their eggs in fire ants' brains.

At least the MIL has her own car again, even if she did insist on taking us to CMA and picking us up to prove that it existed. (Hey, we didn't have to worry about being stuck in the mud, at least.) We're no longer inextricably linked to her schedule, which was a good thing when the Spouse had to take me to the clinic.

I'm not going to make either the Beans Howl-O-Week or the Witches' Ball this weekend - the smoke (hey! something else I can blame for lowering my resistance! inconsiderate smokers!) would kill me right now.

We finally finished _Princess Nine_ on Tuesday night. Very powerful ending, indeed. A number of the otaku are complaining that it wasn't upbeat enough; I'm more disturbed by the inherent sexism in the setup of the final showdown. But those are both minor issues. The same otaku are calling for ADV to get a second season (probably only 13 episodes) produced; unless they're going to develop the characters of the "minor" members of the team more, I'd be just as happy to let things lie, but I would like to see those characters get more screen time. Fanfic ahoy, I guess . . .
omorka: (Default)
Long week . . .

I'd ordered Libana's three CDs of Goddess/Women's/Pagan music, along with the songbooks, and they arrived this week. Samhain's Chanter's Chorus meeting is going to kick ass. Even better, "Lo Yisa Goy" is on there - and not only do I finally know the words, I finally know the correct *name* of what we've all been calling "The A-O Chant"! "Autumn Time" and "Dark of the Moon" I am *totally* looking forward to teaching everyone . . .

Thursday was Open House. I bribed my kids with a free 100 for a daily grade if they brought their folks (I'm giving enough dailies and quizzes that it'll end up being maybe 3 points on the final grade, so I don't feel too bad about it). That day, I did the rubber-band stretch experiment with the kids to illustrate line-of-fit, and RR asked me to bring a couple of copies of the completed graphs to the table, so I did.

Mrs. M and MN and I all went out to "Cliff's," as Ms. M keeps calling it, for dinner. This time I got to see the sign that said "Don's Deck." I was highly amused, and had to explain to Mrs. M why I found it so funny . . .

Now, instead of having the parents try to find their kids' classrooms (and having dozens get lost on their way to or from the Annex), this year they had us all in centralized locations - math and science in the South library, English and history in the North library, and everyone else in the North cafeteria. Each team - PreCalculus, Biology, English III, etc. - had their own table set up. I had pseudo-business cards photocopied off, as well as contact info slips for the parents, so I stuck them behind the sign at the Algebra II table. Everyone else was joking about having a quiet evening.

I got 33 parents, mostly Alg. II but a couple of Geometries. I didn't get to sit down all evening. Wow. Dr. R came by at one point, when I had one parent in front of me and one waiting to get a word in, and seemed impressed. I even have enough parents' e-dresses to send out an e-mail newsletter.

Friday I gave the Geometry kids their first test. First period went just fine. Second was terrible - I had to send one kid to the office and threaten four others. Football and basketball players, all of them (except one girl). How did they get to tenth grade without learning how to take a test? To make things worse, I don't have a correct home phone number for the kid I had to write up. Third managed to get through the rubber band experiment just fine, but they are being dense as hell about parametrics - they want me to boil it down to a single algorithm they can memorize. Sorry, can't happen!

To make things worse, we spent the day knowing that Fay was bearing down on us (I jokingly chastised RR for using her cell phone in the hallway; one of her daughters called her about it). The Spouse finally Rain-X'ed the car, which was a good thing on the way home - it never rained really hard, but it rained enough that it was useful.

We got home around 7:15, after getting dinner. There was a message on the machine, so the Spouse checked it. It was the MIL, in total hysterics - I couldn't even tell what was the matter from the message. The Spouse called her back immediately - it turned out she'd been in a major wreck. Some frat jock in a truck ran a red light in the rain and smacked right into the front passenger tire area; the impact skidded the Storm clear across the intersection - fortunately, there was no one on the other side. (Mr Jock got the ticket and is at fault, so his insurance gets to pick up the tab; he was apparently rude enough to the cop that he'd probably have been ticketed even if he wasn't the one at fault.) The Spouse went to pick her up; he called me from there to tell me that she was basically okay, but that we'd need to take her to the emergency room at the clinic to have her checked out, and the paramedics were still taking her information - I should go ahead and get ready, since they'd swing by to pick me up in a minute.

Now, I seriously questioned the wisdom of having more people than absolutely necessary driving around in the bow-wave of a tropical storm, but they insisted. So I got my stuff together and waited. And waited. (Fortunately, I got all the Libana ripped to MP3 for portability while I was waiting.) Apparently the paramedics were concerned enough to want to seriously check the MIL over if she wasn't going to the hospital with them.

They did eventually get here, and we took her to the emergency room connected to the Kelsey-Seybold clinic that she and I both use. The Spouse and I then got to wait for another hour and a half while they took x-rays and everything. She has major muscle bruising and a minor laceration on her foot, but nothing broken, and, incoherent hysteria notwithstanding, no concussion. Now she's refusing to get the prescription for painkillers filled. She's going to be seriously sore by Monday . . .

We haven't heard from any of the insurance people, and probably won't until Monday at the earliest, but both the MIL and the Spouse are guessing that the Storm is totalled - front passenger has major frame damange. (I suppose we're lucky there wasn't anyone riding with her - they'd have had to be cut out of the car . . .) Back to one car for the three of us again, although *if* the insurance comes through we can probably fix that within a few weeks this time.

Meanwhile, Fay turned south and petered herself out without smacking us with really heavy rains or wind, although Kemah took some minor damage.

In other news, I'm actively hunting for a tabletop gaming group in the Houston area, preferably in GURPS, but pretty much anything other than Rolemaster, Champions, or D$D would be okay. Anyone reading this knows of one, give me a holler.
omorka: (Default)
Long week . . .

I'd ordered Libana's three CDs of Goddess/Women's/Pagan music, along with the songbooks, and they arrived this week. Samhain's Chanter's Chorus meeting is going to kick ass. Even better, "Lo Yisa Goy" is on there - and not only do I finally know the words, I finally know the correct *name* of what we've all been calling "The A-O Chant"! "Autumn Time" and "Dark of the Moon" I am *totally* looking forward to teaching everyone . . .

Thursday was Open House. I bribed my kids with a free 100 for a daily grade if they brought their folks (I'm giving enough dailies and quizzes that it'll end up being maybe 3 points on the final grade, so I don't feel too bad about it). That day, I did the rubber-band stretch experiment with the kids to illustrate line-of-fit, and RR asked me to bring a couple of copies of the completed graphs to the table, so I did.

Mrs. M and MN and I all went out to "Cliff's," as Ms. M keeps calling it, for dinner. This time I got to see the sign that said "Don's Deck." I was highly amused, and had to explain to Mrs. M why I found it so funny . . .

Now, instead of having the parents try to find their kids' classrooms (and having dozens get lost on their way to or from the Annex), this year they had us all in centralized locations - math and science in the South library, English and history in the North library, and everyone else in the North cafeteria. Each team - PreCalculus, Biology, English III, etc. - had their own table set up. I had pseudo-business cards photocopied off, as well as contact info slips for the parents, so I stuck them behind the sign at the Algebra II table. Everyone else was joking about having a quiet evening.

I got 33 parents, mostly Alg. II but a couple of Geometries. I didn't get to sit down all evening. Wow. Dr. R came by at one point, when I had one parent in front of me and one waiting to get a word in, and seemed impressed. I even have enough parents' e-dresses to send out an e-mail newsletter.

Friday I gave the Geometry kids their first test. First period went just fine. Second was terrible - I had to send one kid to the office and threaten four others. Football and basketball players, all of them (except one girl). How did they get to tenth grade without learning how to take a test? To make things worse, I don't have a correct home phone number for the kid I had to write up. Third managed to get through the rubber band experiment just fine, but they are being dense as hell about parametrics - they want me to boil it down to a single algorithm they can memorize. Sorry, can't happen!

To make things worse, we spent the day knowing that Fay was bearing down on us (I jokingly chastised RR for using her cell phone in the hallway; one of her daughters called her about it). The Spouse finally Rain-X'ed the car, which was a good thing on the way home - it never rained really hard, but it rained enough that it was useful.

We got home around 7:15, after getting dinner. There was a message on the machine, so the Spouse checked it. It was the MIL, in total hysterics - I couldn't even tell what was the matter from the message. The Spouse called her back immediately - it turned out she'd been in a major wreck. Some frat jock in a truck ran a red light in the rain and smacked right into the front passenger tire area; the impact skidded the Storm clear across the intersection - fortunately, there was no one on the other side. (Mr Jock got the ticket and is at fault, so his insurance gets to pick up the tab; he was apparently rude enough to the cop that he'd probably have been ticketed even if he wasn't the one at fault.) The Spouse went to pick her up; he called me from there to tell me that she was basically okay, but that we'd need to take her to the emergency room at the clinic to have her checked out, and the paramedics were still taking her information - I should go ahead and get ready, since they'd swing by to pick me up in a minute.

Now, I seriously questioned the wisdom of having more people than absolutely necessary driving around in the bow-wave of a tropical storm, but they insisted. So I got my stuff together and waited. And waited. (Fortunately, I got all the Libana ripped to MP3 for portability while I was waiting.) Apparently the paramedics were concerned enough to want to seriously check the MIL over if she wasn't going to the hospital with them.

They did eventually get here, and we took her to the emergency room connected to the Kelsey-Seybold clinic that she and I both use. The Spouse and I then got to wait for another hour and a half while they took x-rays and everything. She has major muscle bruising and a minor laceration on her foot, but nothing broken, and, incoherent hysteria notwithstanding, no concussion. Now she's refusing to get the prescription for painkillers filled. She's going to be seriously sore by Monday . . .

We haven't heard from any of the insurance people, and probably won't until Monday at the earliest, but both the MIL and the Spouse are guessing that the Storm is totalled - front passenger has major frame damange. (I suppose we're lucky there wasn't anyone riding with her - they'd have had to be cut out of the car . . .) Back to one car for the three of us again, although *if* the insurance comes through we can probably fix that within a few weeks this time.

Meanwhile, Fay turned south and petered herself out without smacking us with really heavy rains or wind, although Kemah took some minor damage.

In other news, I'm actively hunting for a tabletop gaming group in the Houston area, preferably in GURPS, but pretty much anything other than Rolemaster, Champions, or D$D would be okay. Anyone reading this knows of one, give me a holler.
omorka: (Default)
The squash have come up! Yay!

Now I have to thin them. I hate thinning plants. The entire school is supposed to read _Seedfolks_ next week as part of National Library Week, and in it one of the characters refuses to thin her carrots because it reminds her too much of what happened in the concentration camps. While I'm not that bad off, I do dislike bringing a life up from the ground only to pluck it again. Maybe next year I'll just plant them at the spacing they're supposed to be after thinning and hope enough come up . . .

I'm just too thrilled to have a garden. Bugs are still chewing on the basil, but it's growing rapidly enough I figure there's enough for me and them, too. The tomatoes are growing so fast they're a bit leggy. The mints are all quite happy, as are the parsleys. The sage is definitely dead, which is a shame, but it's the only one I've lost. I almost feel as if I'm being too hopeful, that even the green thumb I remember from my childhood can't be this good. Harvest is so far away.

That's part of the problem with thinning. I have no problem aspecting the Dark Goddess in her own time, with reaping the harvest ripe. It's taking these little seedling lives that chafes me, aspecting Her in the Spring, in the Light half of the year. I don't even really mind losing the sage, as that wasn't me, even if it was caused by bad planning on my part. But how can I uproot these little green things that I set there?

Maybe I can plant them in a vacant space somewhere. I don't know where, though. I'll have to be awfully careful pulling them if I'm going to do that.

I ran into something odd in the kitchen today. Back around Yule, I made two batches of cookies that needed to be rolled in powdered sugar. I wasn't sure whether I was going to make more, so I saved the used sugar. Apparently I marked the bag "Cookie Sugar" so I'd know what it was, and then in smaller letters added "not anthrax."

Gods. I don't usually engage in such black humor. I wonder why I did that? Then again, I'm the one who proudly booked a flight home for Thanksgiving in late September.

I understand the Harvest. It's part and parcel of who I am. Weeding is a little harder, but not too hard. But pruning and thinning I just can't do.

In less philosophical news, this week has been Logistics Hell. One car or the other has been in the shop all week, so the MIL and the Spouse and I have all been carpooling again. Moreover, the mechanic they use has been spectacularly clueless about getting anything fixed and about schedules for doing so. I am beginning to wonder if we will have transportation for Beltane on Thursday. It would really, truly suck to have to miss a gathering because the car is broken. The Spouse has made grumbling noises about renting a car for that weekend if we have to, but I really don't want to deal with the frustration and expense of that, especially on top of the expense of taking the car to a more clueful mechanic to actually get it fixed (which I think we will have to do eventually, even if he manages to kludge something together for right now).

Work this week has been stressful, although perhaps no more than average. I had two parent conferences, both early morning ones. The parents were late for one, and I left my umbrella at the other. Fortunately, in both cases the parents were mostly free of NMKS (Not My Kid Syndrome). My team has been completely dragging its feet over the exam questions, and the two members of the team who turned their stuff in to me both turned it in on hardcopy instead of as a file - and of course, neither of them saved their files, so I'll have to type it all in again. (*Grrrr* . . . I hate my tech-retarded colleagues sometimes.) We also had our last AP conference of the year. I've signed up for a lot of GT training over the summer, and I'm planning on going to an AP seminar and CAMT as well. I have decided that I'm _not_ volunteering to do anything else over the summer, since I need some time off somewhere, but we'll see if that resolution holds up to any decisions to do vertical team planning.

Naturally, carpooling with the MIL, the Spouse and I haven't been very social this week. We did have dinner with MW&JT, which was nice, but I'm afraid I cut that short by zonking out on them (sorry, guys). If things go well tomorrow, we might see them then for gaming; I'll probably see PB, and maybe the Raven and greeneyedpagan (if they're not completely tied up with CMA stuff) at Bagels tomorrow. I really feel bad about not spending more time with people, but even when we have transport, everyone else seems so busy. MW, in particular, has papers to write, and I feel guilty suggesting we do social stuff with her when I know she needs the time for other things. And once she's free, I'll be in end-of-school rampdown and running as fast as I can just to catch up with myself. (See also previous comment about exams.) I won't really have serious social time to spend until June, and then JG and family will be in town to visit. Argh. Scheduling sucks.

I've been trying to take some of the "Which X are you?" tests, but an awful lot of those sites either don't like Netscape or don't like me - the below was the only one I could get into. Such a pain. Ah, well. I want a "What Mahou Tsukai Tai! character are you" quiz, and since one doesn't currently exist, perhaps I shall have to make one up.

I went CD shopping with the Spouse last sunday, which I really shouldn't have done - I bought stuff. It's amazing what I'll buy for $6 if it was originally priced at $14 and there's one song on it I know I like. On the other hand, I think I'm glad I got the Seal album, and I haven't listened to a lot of the others, so perhaps I will feel better about spending the money after I hear them all. Certainly I needed the two full-priced albums I got (a Def Leppard best-of and Weird Al's _Even Worse_). At the very least, it's ammunition to use against the upstairs neighbor, who thinks Whitney Houston is the greatest thing since sliced bread.
omorka: (Default)
The squash have come up! Yay!

Now I have to thin them. I hate thinning plants. The entire school is supposed to read _Seedfolks_ next week as part of National Library Week, and in it one of the characters refuses to thin her carrots because it reminds her too much of what happened in the concentration camps. While I'm not that bad off, I do dislike bringing a life up from the ground only to pluck it again. Maybe next year I'll just plant them at the spacing they're supposed to be after thinning and hope enough come up . . .

I'm just too thrilled to have a garden. Bugs are still chewing on the basil, but it's growing rapidly enough I figure there's enough for me and them, too. The tomatoes are growing so fast they're a bit leggy. The mints are all quite happy, as are the parsleys. The sage is definitely dead, which is a shame, but it's the only one I've lost. I almost feel as if I'm being too hopeful, that even the green thumb I remember from my childhood can't be this good. Harvest is so far away.

That's part of the problem with thinning. I have no problem aspecting the Dark Goddess in her own time, with reaping the harvest ripe. It's taking these little seedling lives that chafes me, aspecting Her in the Spring, in the Light half of the year. I don't even really mind losing the sage, as that wasn't me, even if it was caused by bad planning on my part. But how can I uproot these little green things that I set there?

Maybe I can plant them in a vacant space somewhere. I don't know where, though. I'll have to be awfully careful pulling them if I'm going to do that.

I ran into something odd in the kitchen today. Back around Yule, I made two batches of cookies that needed to be rolled in powdered sugar. I wasn't sure whether I was going to make more, so I saved the used sugar. Apparently I marked the bag "Cookie Sugar" so I'd know what it was, and then in smaller letters added "not anthrax."

Gods. I don't usually engage in such black humor. I wonder why I did that? Then again, I'm the one who proudly booked a flight home for Thanksgiving in late September.

I understand the Harvest. It's part and parcel of who I am. Weeding is a little harder, but not too hard. But pruning and thinning I just can't do.

In less philosophical news, this week has been Logistics Hell. One car or the other has been in the shop all week, so the MIL and the Spouse and I have all been carpooling again. Moreover, the mechanic they use has been spectacularly clueless about getting anything fixed and about schedules for doing so. I am beginning to wonder if we will have transportation for Beltane on Thursday. It would really, truly suck to have to miss a gathering because the car is broken. The Spouse has made grumbling noises about renting a car for that weekend if we have to, but I really don't want to deal with the frustration and expense of that, especially on top of the expense of taking the car to a more clueful mechanic to actually get it fixed (which I think we will have to do eventually, even if he manages to kludge something together for right now).

Work this week has been stressful, although perhaps no more than average. I had two parent conferences, both early morning ones. The parents were late for one, and I left my umbrella at the other. Fortunately, in both cases the parents were mostly free of NMKS (Not My Kid Syndrome). My team has been completely dragging its feet over the exam questions, and the two members of the team who turned their stuff in to me both turned it in on hardcopy instead of as a file - and of course, neither of them saved their files, so I'll have to type it all in again. (*Grrrr* . . . I hate my tech-retarded colleagues sometimes.) We also had our last AP conference of the year. I've signed up for a lot of GT training over the summer, and I'm planning on going to an AP seminar and CAMT as well. I have decided that I'm _not_ volunteering to do anything else over the summer, since I need some time off somewhere, but we'll see if that resolution holds up to any decisions to do vertical team planning.

Naturally, carpooling with the MIL, the Spouse and I haven't been very social this week. We did have dinner with MW&JT, which was nice, but I'm afraid I cut that short by zonking out on them (sorry, guys). If things go well tomorrow, we might see them then for gaming; I'll probably see PB, and maybe the Raven and greeneyedpagan (if they're not completely tied up with CMA stuff) at Bagels tomorrow. I really feel bad about not spending more time with people, but even when we have transport, everyone else seems so busy. MW, in particular, has papers to write, and I feel guilty suggesting we do social stuff with her when I know she needs the time for other things. And once she's free, I'll be in end-of-school rampdown and running as fast as I can just to catch up with myself. (See also previous comment about exams.) I won't really have serious social time to spend until June, and then JG and family will be in town to visit. Argh. Scheduling sucks.

I've been trying to take some of the "Which X are you?" tests, but an awful lot of those sites either don't like Netscape or don't like me - the below was the only one I could get into. Such a pain. Ah, well. I want a "What Mahou Tsukai Tai! character are you" quiz, and since one doesn't currently exist, perhaps I shall have to make one up.

I went CD shopping with the Spouse last sunday, which I really shouldn't have done - I bought stuff. It's amazing what I'll buy for $6 if it was originally priced at $14 and there's one song on it I know I like. On the other hand, I think I'm glad I got the Seal album, and I haven't listened to a lot of the others, so perhaps I will feel better about spending the money after I hear them all. Certainly I needed the two full-priced albums I got (a Def Leppard best-of and Weird Al's _Even Worse_). At the very least, it's ammunition to use against the upstairs neighbor, who thinks Whitney Houston is the greatest thing since sliced bread.
omorka: (Default)
The garden is doing okay. About a week ago we had a storm that killed the sage plant (partially my fault; I had it right under the drip line of the eaves), and something is chewing on the basil. In addition, the squash hasn't come up, although it may just be taking its time. Everything else seems to be doing pretty well. I'm really thrilled - and hoping for a decent harvest.

It's raining again, and it's supposed to still be storming tomorrow morning. This is fine for tonight, but the morning is going to be a pain, as we're carpooling with the MIL again. Her car was in the shop for a broken heater core earlier this week, and as soon as we got hers back ours had to go in for The Recurring Clutch problem (ick). The Spouse has not taken this at all well, and in fact went into full-blown Road Rage at one point. I was so incredibly glad we didn't have a gun in the car . . . Even when he hasn't been that bad, he's been stressed and twitchy over it. I don't know what to do - if I were acting that way, I'd want sex to relieve the stress, but I've offered and the thought just seems to make him feel worse.

We had dinner with MW & JT both Friday and Saturday, which was nice. I'd like to actually game with them, and I have enough written to GM, but they don't really seem terribly interested. I hope they haven't decided I suck as a GM.

Classes are going okay. This next week is an A week, which should be a good thing. I have papers to grade that I'm currently not grading, as I really don't feel like sitting in the bedroom to do it and the Spouse is watching a really stupid movie (_Rollerball_) in the other room. I'll have enough time to do most of them tomorrow, but I really should finish at least 1st period and most of 3rd before I go to bed. At least I have all my planning up to CMA Beltane done.

Ten days to Beltane! Woohoo! I feel like I'm not prepared. I'm not sure, though, what I can really do to prepare until the weekend before. I guess I could plan our meals, but that seems a little obsessive. We do need to pick up a canopy, but I doubt we're going to have time for that before next weekend.

The Raven wants us and MW & JT to camp with him. I think we're going to take him up on the offer, or at least camp near there. Since he's allergic, we at least know there won't be serious smoking in that camp. I'm going to make some signs anyway.

We did go shopping today - for CDs. That was probably a mistake, although I did pick up some stuff I've been needing. We got Weird Al's _Even Worse_ for $9, which was cool in its own right. Now we just need his first album and _Bad Hair Day_. I also got a Def Leppard best-of and some John Popper solo stuff. Why do I buy CDs that only have one song on them I like? Is it just so I can make compilations? (Answer: yeah, it probably is.)

All right, I must gut up and go grade now . . .
omorka: (Default)
The garden is doing okay. About a week ago we had a storm that killed the sage plant (partially my fault; I had it right under the drip line of the eaves), and something is chewing on the basil. In addition, the squash hasn't come up, although it may just be taking its time. Everything else seems to be doing pretty well. I'm really thrilled - and hoping for a decent harvest.

It's raining again, and it's supposed to still be storming tomorrow morning. This is fine for tonight, but the morning is going to be a pain, as we're carpooling with the MIL again. Her car was in the shop for a broken heater core earlier this week, and as soon as we got hers back ours had to go in for The Recurring Clutch problem (ick). The Spouse has not taken this at all well, and in fact went into full-blown Road Rage at one point. I was so incredibly glad we didn't have a gun in the car . . . Even when he hasn't been that bad, he's been stressed and twitchy over it. I don't know what to do - if I were acting that way, I'd want sex to relieve the stress, but I've offered and the thought just seems to make him feel worse.

We had dinner with MW & JT both Friday and Saturday, which was nice. I'd like to actually game with them, and I have enough written to GM, but they don't really seem terribly interested. I hope they haven't decided I suck as a GM.

Classes are going okay. This next week is an A week, which should be a good thing. I have papers to grade that I'm currently not grading, as I really don't feel like sitting in the bedroom to do it and the Spouse is watching a really stupid movie (_Rollerball_) in the other room. I'll have enough time to do most of them tomorrow, but I really should finish at least 1st period and most of 3rd before I go to bed. At least I have all my planning up to CMA Beltane done.

Ten days to Beltane! Woohoo! I feel like I'm not prepared. I'm not sure, though, what I can really do to prepare until the weekend before. I guess I could plan our meals, but that seems a little obsessive. We do need to pick up a canopy, but I doubt we're going to have time for that before next weekend.

The Raven wants us and MW & JT to camp with him. I think we're going to take him up on the offer, or at least camp near there. Since he's allergic, we at least know there won't be serious smoking in that camp. I'm going to make some signs anyway.

We did go shopping today - for CDs. That was probably a mistake, although I did pick up some stuff I've been needing. We got Weird Al's _Even Worse_ for $9, which was cool in its own right. Now we just need his first album and _Bad Hair Day_. I also got a Def Leppard best-of and some John Popper solo stuff. Why do I buy CDs that only have one song on them I like? Is it just so I can make compilations? (Answer: yeah, it probably is.)

All right, I must gut up and go grade now . . .
omorka: (Default)
This is the last long break. From here on out, we have one half-day (in early May) and one day off (Memorial Day itself) and that's it - the rest is seven weeks of grind and crunch, and one hectic week of finals and graduation. I have one other day off, the Friday for CMA (Mr. B already approved it, so I've got it no matter what, although I still need to call in a sub for it), but that's not a whole lot more. And I can't be sick anymore; I'm running out of sick days. So I'd best enjoy these three days while I can.

Yesterday was the well-woman appointment. I have to say, I really like this doctor; she's fairly young and rather bouncy (she reminds me a little of KA, actually). They didn't do bloodwork, and the exam itself was as painless as it's ever been - just a couple of pinches. I was out of there in half an hour, including wait time. Moreover, the main clinic sent my folder (I assume it was a fax copy, but it might have been the actual folder itself) to the women's clinic, so she had all the information right there; very organized. Overall, I was fairly pleased. I also like having both my primary physician and my OB/Gyn be female, although I can't actually explain why.

Afterwards, we went to the new Target on Main, where they not only didn't have my hosiery in stock, they didn't even have a place for it. I guess I'm going to have to either try to find it online, or wait until the River Oaks target gets it in. Yech. But at least I won't need stockings until Tuesday, anyway.

Then, we went to Teas' Nursery, where I got two tomato plants, two basil, peppermint, spearmint, applemint, lemon balm, sage, curly parsley, Italian parsley, sage, and a packet of yellow squash seeds from Seeds of Change (who are apparently distributed by Burpee, which seems odd - the queen of extreme hybrids with the guardians of heirlooms and seed-saving?). I spent the afternoon planting these; the parsley and the sage are underneath the front right windows, and everything else is in the plot in back. It all fills the space fairly well, and the fallen leaves in back make a pretty good mulch. Hopefully, they'll also add some organic matter to lighten the soil back there; it's a heavy dark clay, which will be mineral-rich but won't drain well until it has enough organic bits in it. I worked in the compost I bought back in December (which has been sitting in bags in our half of the garage since then) as well as I could with just the fork and trowel; I really ought to get a hoe and work in the mulch really well at the end of the season. We'll see how the front plot works; the groundskeepers may trash those plants accidentally, not knowing what they are. The back should be relatively safe, although I discovered we don't have a back water outlet on this building - I had to use the one on the back of next-door instead.

Now, of course, my back and legs are really sore - I haven't done heavy garden fork work since, well, December, and before that since 1992. Standing up or sitting down is difficult. But, I have a garden now, at least of sorts. Barring disaster by drought or bugs, I should have real tomatoes, basil and parsley to go with them, mint for tea, and real squash late this summer.

Between the kids and the garden Big Mama should have plenty to do. : )

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