13 November 2019

There are people outside making far too much noise, but I don't really care, and you need to get up and open a car for me because I am wicked hungry and I'm not going to help write if I don't get some food in me.


12 November 2019

Before the teardown...ignore the stuff by the fence, it was moved so that it's out of the way during the build
The tearing down of this patio cover was suppose to start on Friday, but the contractor called today and said they could do it tomorrow, and we'll be home anyway, so why not? If they get it down tomorrow, they can start building the new one on Thursday, and be done on Friday.

I'll be glad to get it done, it's needed to be done since the day we bought this house--it's an illegal structure as it is; the people who lived here before us tried to get a permit for it but failed the inspection twice, and just stopped trying. It was so poorly constructed that we had to separate it from the VA inspection before we bought the house, otherwise we weren't getting the loan.

Originally it was covered with plywood and thin shingles, and it was flat, so water pooled on it and warped the plywood, and 80% of the shingles were missing. The Spouse Thingy took the plywood down and covered it with suncloth, reasoning that we would replace the entire structure in a year ot two.

Yeah...we've been here almost 11 years.

Initially when the contractor called I was a little miffed at starting early because I changed plans to be home over the week--I am missing the 3 Day--but then I realized they won't be done until at least Friday anyway, and I still needed to be home because one of us has a real job and works on Friday.

Once the new one is up, we can start working on the rest of the back yard. It's kinda white-trash (though a lot less than it used to be) and we'd like to get it to where we actually want to use it. We might even do the grown up thing and get nice patio furniture and a fire pit. We both want a hot tub, though that'll mean putting down a concrete pad and who knows what that will cost.

Hell, I'd concrete the entire yard if I didn't think it would be $$$$$.Less grass = less water to maintain it. Less mowing. More space to play. And no grass for those damned bees are whatever they are that live in underground hives, lying in wait to make my allergic asterisk miserable.

Fingers cross the giant window doesn't get broken...


11 November 2019

We're finally sliding into both the best and the suckiest time of year.

It's the best because the temps have cooled down and I can go for a ride any time of day without worrying about it being too hot. And this is Northern California--it's not going to get too cold. Worst thing that might happen is rain or super stiff wind, both of which I can deal with.

The suckiest part, gets dark so freaking early. Sure, a lot of people ride in the dark, but I'm guessing most of those people aren't night blind. I can safely squeak it out to 5:30 right now, but in a few weeks I'll need to be done and home by about 4:30 no matter what I'm doing.

Still going to try to focus on the not-hot part, even though we're a little warmer than typical for this time of year. We went for a 45 minute ride this afternoon, ending it at the pizza place; tomorrow we'll hit the gym. Tomorrow night I'll whine about my noodle-legs, because that's what I do.

Good news is that I have some really good Havarti cheese to go with my whine.

No, really...I'm not a cheese person but we picked this stuff up at Costco and it's amazing. Crunchy, too. I don't think I've ever had cheese with crunchy bits in it, but I like it.

I'll try not to contemplate having had pizza and then more cheese...its probably not a wise move for someone with lactose intolerance.

I really should have considered that before indulging, eh?


10 November 2019

It's early November but my brain is already pondering Christmas decorations. Do we want to decorate outside? Our house is tucked into a court where few people can see it, so it seems like a lot of effort for the 3 other houses around us. And a lot of electricity given that in those 3 houses, there are maybe 7 people. brainer. There will be a Whovimas tree and a Christmas tree, and make no mistake, those are two different things. But if you want to lump them together as Holiday Trees, fine. That's the beauty of things: I call them what I want, you call them what you want, and no one is hurt or gets bent by it.

But if you do get bent by the idea that someone has a holiday tree and not a Christmas tree, or if you bristle at someone wishing you "happy holidays?" You have an issue: it really is you, not someone else.

I'm already not looking forward to what has become the annual online-bitch-fest. "It's Christmas, dammit, say 'Merry Christmas!'"

No, it's not.

It's Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Three Kings Day, Winter Solstice, Festivus, New Year's Eve, New Years, and a bunch of others.

Christians don't own the holiday season. Celebrate it how you want, dedicate it to whatever it means to you...and understand that someone offering you a "Happy Holiday" is being nice, being considerate, wishing you well, and any response other than thank you, you too is mean-spirited and kinda paints you as a bit of a dick.

It's the weight of intention, peoples; if you respond to someone else's "Happy holidays" with a snotty  "Merry Christmas," there's nothing Christlike about it, and you're telling the world you're a raging jerk with no room for what other people believe.

What would Jesus do?

If you really are a Christian, you don't really need the answer...



9 November 2019

I did not hit the pool to swim yesterday. I wasn't as sore as I thought I would be, but my left shoulder--as opposed to the right, which is the problematic one--let me know swimming wouldn't have been my brightest idea. And at this stage of just getting back to it, I'm not willing to push it.

So I pulled a bike out of the garage and decided to ride the long way to Starbucks. Five miles there, five miles back; it's a decent ride given how small this town is. The weather was just about perfect, too, which made me think not swimming was a stellar idea, and I enjoyed every turn of the crank.

If not for wanting to get some work done, I probably would have repeated the circuit and gone back to Starbucks...mostly because I seem to need a destination. But I went home after getting a little work done at Starbucks and cranked out enough to get me up to 23000 words for NaNoWriMo, and I contemplated doing some housework.


Max jumped in my lap, and the book we're reading was right there, so...yeah. The house still looks like a disaster, but Max was happy and that's what matters, right?

Speaking of Max... I was poking around last night and ran across this picture from earlier in the year.

This was taken after I'd been away for the better part of a week, watching Butters and Lady. He glued himself to me, and looked at me like he'd been sure I was never coming back. I suppose in his mind, that was true. After all, when I'm gone it's usually only for a day or two, so when four and then five rolled around, well, I was probably gone for good.

This cat loves me. Like, unnaturally so. My lap is his favorite place, and he'll smooch me any chance he gets.

Don't tell him I told you this. He has a reputation to maintain.

Now, we've been thinking about going somewhere In January. Spouse Thingy took a weekend off because we'd planned on running in the Hot Chocolate in San Francisco, but neither of us has been able to get our pace down so it seems pointless. Also, I forgot to get a hotel room. That opened up the chance to go to Disneyland, or somewhere else, provided someone could feed the cats.

But I look at this picture, and I'm not sure it's a good idea. He's so old, he's super needy now, but mostly I worry about his feelings. One night, maybe. But I worry if I'm gone much more than that, he'll break.

So maybe day trips instead.

At 18.5 years, he deserves the consideration.

And there's a lot we can do near here. Cheaper things.

And holy hell, I looked at the cost of a night at the Disneyland Hotel and it's over $450 a night now. WTF. Even the off site hotels have gone up.





8 November 2019


It's a little after midnight, and I think I can safely say I'm probably going to roll out of bed tomorrow like someone who's been on a 2 day Fireball bender, without the headache (I hope.)

I got up from my comfy chair when Max leaped off my lap to inform me it was Snack O'clock and it was not optional on my part, and when I took half a step I realized that all four of my limbs are nothing but noodley appendages. Another half step and my body whispered Beeyotch, you are too old for this chit.

Fortunately, I keep my phone by my bed at night--habit for when the Spouse Thingy works so he can get hold of me in case of an emergency--so if I can only manage to get halfway out of bed, my legs melted and splaying in separate directions, I can call for help.

Or maybe just post to Facebook so y'all can mock me.

I would totally mock me.


7 November 2019

Yesterday while running errands, we stopped at the gym and re-joined. The timing was fortuitous; they're running a former-members special, offering all of November for free, with no upfront membership fee. That probably saved us $200-225, given that we were already set on this gym anyway.

We'd decided on re-joining about a month ago, but one thing or another came up and we just never made it over there. I was also dragging my asterisk because the 3 Day was coming up and I always dye my hair for it, but hair dye and swimming don't go well together. I figured I would just cut it super short after the walk, then let if grow until March for St. Baldrick's.

Okay, so we committed to it again. I've missed swimming and finally feel like my shoulder can handle it again. I headed over there this morning with the idea that I would only swim for half an hour, no matter how many laps it turned out to be. No ego in the water for now; when I had to stop because of my shoulder, I was doing a mile and a half, roughly, in a little over an hour. So I'm slow compared to other swimmers, but that was pretty freaking fast for me.

I'm not racing. And I'm not going to do what I did before and get from zero to a mile too quickly.

So I got around 900 meters, a smidge over half a mile, my half hour was up, and even though I felt like I had more in me, I got out of the pool and headed for the locker room.

Now this is where I admit I should have checked the pool schedule before leaving the house. There was an aqua aerobics class going on when I got there (there are 3 pools...they were not in the lap swim pool) and I noted the dozen or so little old ladies bobbing around before I slid into the lone open lane in the lap swim pool.

I have no idea when they finished. When I got out of the water there were still a couple people in the other pool, but I didn't clue into the fact that they might have just finished, so all those older women were probably in the locker room.

They were.

I showered, and when I was done there was a line waiting for the swimsuit spinner, and every changing room was occupied. I didn't kind waiting in line to spin the water out of my suit, and I don't really have a problem changing by my locker. I mean, I prefer to use the changing room because when your skin is a little damp, getting into a sports bra is not always a graceful sort of activity, and I prefer to strangle myself with the straps in private.

I could have waited, but, eh...I'm not that modest. So I started digging my clothes out of the locker and someone sat on the bench near me so she could put on her shoes and wait for a friend who was changing in one of the aforementioned rooms.

It was at this moment I remembered that older women--I'm talking later 70s and up--don't really give a shit about anything. Even in the locker room. They don't care if you're bare-assed naked, trying to dry off, and they don't care if you're wrestling with a sports bra, trying to get it on with still-damp skin, while not bouncing so much that your still-ample gut flops around like a dead fish.

They just don't care, and if they're interested in your tattoos, they will forking stare. Then they'll lean closer to get a better look at the details, and start asking questions about them.

To my credit, when she asked about the tattoo on my calf, I did not turn and let my flab slap her upside the face. I just answered her, relieved that I'd finally gotten the damn bra on. She scooted a little closer and asked about my Max tattoo, and then the Disney tattoos, and really seemed to like them, which I normally wouldn't mind, but...lady, I'm in a bra and underwear, I want to put on my shirt and jeans, and I can feel your breath on my arm.

To her credit, she didn't touch. A lot of people do, especially since my tattoos are mostly on my forearms. Still, she got super close and was witness to my bra-struggle, so we might be engaged now.

I am totally checking the schedule before I go tomorrow...


6 November 2019

I spent the weekend at the Boy's house to pet-sit while he and his wife went to Disneyland. I figured it was a good time to get my diet back on track and to get a bunch of work done.

Yeah, that didn't work.

I got there and there was candy on the counter with a note saying EAT THIS. To my credit, I only ate a couple of Tootsie Rolls because I haven't had one in years, and I was pretty sure I'd take a bite and hate it. The problem is that I did not hate it. I loved it. And now I want a giant bag of Tootsie Rolls because OF COURSE I DO.

And then there was chocolate milk in the fridge. The Boy said he would make sure there was a carton, because at the time I'd also planned on getting a lot of walking done as some last minute training, and chocolate milk is excellent recovery food. The only walking I got done was when I took Butters out, and a little bit walking around Barnes & Noble trying to ignore the sounds of 1000 books calling to me. 

Oh, and there's a Five Guys near the B&N. So I convinced myself a burger was a fine idea.

I did not get on the scale when I got home.

My work plans fells apart when I started reading N.K. Jeminsin's Inheritance Trilogy. I should have accepted that once I started it I would fall into it, because the same thing happened when I started her Broken Earth series. I read the entire first book and more than half of the second, and I was only there for two days.

To my credit, I did get a little work done. I'm a good 13,000 words deep into NaNoWriMo. They're not good words, but they're words.

So I did not get my diet back on track and I did not get much work done, but I had fun with dogs and cats and spent more time reading in a single block than I have in a couple of years.

So all in all, a good weekend.

By the end of today we should be gym members again, so maybe I'll get some traction in that direction.

If I do, great. If I don't, fine. Because if I don't...there were more Tootsie Rolls and I'm chewing my way through a damn good end of the trilogy.


5 November 2019

I set a goal to hit 2000 miles this year because I was seriously disappointed in myself for not hitting last year's 1500 mile goal. I didn't even hit 1300 miles.

Granted, two or three years ago 1200 would have thrilled me, but now that's just kind of eh. I know I can do 1200 in a year now, so it's not goal-worthy. When I first started tracking, it absolutely was and I don't want to detract from that.

I don't think I'm going to fall short this year. I have under 160 miles left, and I have nearly two months left. If I get my ass in gear, I can hit it by the end of the month. Between walking and riding, it's very doable. Add in that I want to pound out the 60 miles I owe for the 3 Day...if nothing else, I should come close.

Man, if I could slide into December needing under 100 miles to goal? That would be spiffy.

Oh, and ignore the whole "races" thing in the image. It's just the way I keep track of my miles; I use Yes.Fit...I am motivated by shiny things, so it works for me. But I don't think of those as races, just mini-goals.

Whatever gets me off my asterisk and out the door...


3 November 2019

You'd think they hated each other and were trying to kill each other, but the reality is that they were bathing each other, and now I am ded from the kyoot.


2 November 2019

Most of the things in this picture were gifts.

We bought the Tahoe Pier picture at the art gallery the Spouse Thingy displays in; same with the centerpiece, a tree of life hand-wired by an artist he also works with at the hospital. A friend painted the picture in the upper right; my father-in-law made the massive clock, and it's one of the few things I would miss if something happened to the house.

That doesn't mean I don't treasure them all, because I do. That's why they're in this room, where I can easily see them.

The mantle is narrow, maybe two inches. But everything on it is special, things made by friends or their kids, things loved ones hoped I would enjoy. The little kitties and books were actually part of a game, but I wanted them here. There's a cork bear made by the daughter of a 3 Day team mate and it always makes me smile. Ornaments and a bookmark made by another friend's daughter.

They're all tiny things that in someone else's house I might overlook.

Except maybe Spock dancing with a Dalek. I think I would notice that anywhere.

In another month, some of those things will be moved to the other side if the room so that we can decorate for Christmas, but they'll still be where I can see them.

We moved the furniture back into this room because of Max, so that he would have use of the fireplace--he won't lounge in front of it unless someone is in here--but I'm glad we did. I couldn't see these things from the other room, and honestly, I missed it all.

Just one of those "huh" kind of things that sometimes cross my mind.

It really is the little things...


1 November 2019

Apparently this is also Blogvember, or NaBloPoMo, or WRITE A DAMN POST EVERYDAY month. I couldn't find any decent images to celebrate this, so you get the cat tax instead.

We're gonna do WHAT this month?
I can pound out enough words to get to 50K by the end of the month when writing fiction. But can I add a blog post every day to that?

We'll see.

This weekend will be dedicated to two things: getting my diet back on track, and writing. Since I'll be at my son's house watching his four furry kids, one of those will be easier than the other. Which one remains to be seen.

Max will have the Spouse Thingy opening cans for him and I'll feed him before I leave--I'll give him a full can and he'll get more just a few hours later when Mike wakes up--so I doubt he'll really that I'm gone. He sleeps most of the time as it is, and if he gets up and doesn't find me in the house, he'll probably nibble on some dry food and then go back to bed.

Buddah won't care one bit.

On the upside for Lady and Butters...the original plan was for me to be out a lot, racking up the last training miles for the 3 Day, but since that's been shoved back a year, they won't be alone at all, really (I doubt Monkey and Arya care, as long as someone opens a can in the morning.)

What I didn't expect was that I'm actually feeling guilty about not needing to get some last-minute training in. I'm feeling guilty overall about not going to the 3 Day. And I imagine that in two weeks, I'm going to feel guilt along with disappointment, because I'm not there playing with my friends.

I will survive.

Tonight, being the last night before I start getting picky about my food again, I'm going to indulge in some hot chocolate and I'm going to read instead of work, and then wish I had indulged in my impulse to make brownies. Or cake. Or even muffins.

Good thing I don't have the stuff to make any of those...

...but I do have a forkton of Halloween candy left over. 36 full sized bars, 5 trick-or-treaters.


No, I will not eat all of that.