Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Not falling off the bridge anymore, I'm reading instead

I'm feeling much better today. Had a bit of what I call the "falling off the bridge" syndrome going on, you know--lots of negativity, worry and angst. But I started practicing, RE-practicing, really, what my counselor had told me and what I've been reading and (sporadically) practicing for years, centering and meditation. It's no big surprise that it really helps! So why do I keep "forgetting" about it? One of those little mysteries of human nature, I guess.

Lately I've read some interesting books and watched some really good movies, too. Last night watched the award-winning winning movie "Tsotsi" and watched the alternate endings (I like the ending they chose the best) how the movie was made, the soundtrack (by Zola--fantastic, I want it!). The movies and books are all from the library where I go almost daily for job-finding and personal reasons. Bet the library has the soundtrack or could do an inter-library lending thing to get it for me.

Over the summer and even since my accident I hadn't read much. You'd think with the extra time that reading would be one of my choice activities, but it wasn't. It was difficult to concentrate enough to read for the first few months and after that just the activities of normal living were taking so long that I really didn't have time to read. But I have had time lately and it's been great to re-visit diving into a good book!

Some of the interesting books I've read lately are:

Free For All: Oddballs, Geeks, and Gangstas in the Public Library by Don Borchert

'Jack-of-all-trades Borchert shares wholesome, guardedly witty dispatches from the suburban L.A. library system in this charming tell-all. For 12 years the family-man author has held the post of assistant librarian, keeping a wary eye on unruly kids, mollifying mystified parents and repairing sadly manhandled materials. Borchert relays a conversation with an aged librarian who reveals how it was in the good old days (staff lunches used to be served with wine), then contrasts that account with modern-day multicultural crayons and the preponderance of latchkey kids abandoned in the library for long, numbing afternoons. A few of the regular patrons are inspiring Renaissance types, but most are unsettling and unsavory, such as intensely reclusive crossword-puzzler Henry hounding the reference desk; loser Max looking futilely on the Internet for a South American wife; or the drug dealers working the restroom. From patrons who rack up hundreds of dollars in fines to missing pet rats and fist-fighting mothers, Borchert has seen it all, and his account gives a human interest spin to this undervalued profession.' -From Publishers Weekly

“The idea of a librarian memoir sounds really boring, but Borchert’s voice is never boring, and you keep reading because (1) he’s hilarious and (2) it’s uncharted territory” —San Francisco Chronicle

“Free for All aims to do for libraries what Bel Kaufman’s Up the Down Staircase did for urban schools or what Bill Buford’s Heat did for professional cooking” –USA Today

I LOVED this book! A funny, sad, intriguing look at what (and who) goes on in a public library.

Piaf: A Biography by Monique Lange
I had wanted to know more about Edith Piaf, and this book satisfied that curiosity and how she fit into history.

The Botany of Desire: A Plant's-Eye View of the World by Michael Pollan
'Working in his garden one day, Michael Pollan hit pay dirt in the form of an idea: do plants, he wondered, use humans as much as we use them? While the question is not entirely original, the way Pollan examines this complex coevolution by looking at the natural world from the perspective of plants is unique. The result is a fascinating and engaging look at the true nature of domestication.

In making his point, Pollan focuses on the relationship between humans and four specific plants: apples, tulips, marijuana, and potatoes. He uses the history of John Chapman (Johnny Appleseed) to illustrate how both the apple's sweetness and its role in the production of alcoholic cider made it appealing to settlers moving west, thus greatly expanding the plant's range. He also explains how human manipulation of the plant has weakened it, so that "modern apples require more pesticide than any other food crop." The tulipomania of 17th-century Holland is a backdrop for his examination of the role the tulip's beauty played in wildly influencing human behavior to both the benefit and detriment of the plant (the markings that made the tulip so attractive to the Dutch were actually caused by a virus). His excellent discussion of the potato combines a history of the plant with a prime example of how biotechnology is changing our relationship to nature. As part of his research, Pollan visited the Monsanto company headquarters and planted some of their NewLeaf brand potatoes in his garden--seeds that had been genetically engineered to produce their own insecticide. Though they worked as advertised, he made some startling discoveries, primarily that the NewLeaf plants themselves are registered as a pesticide by the EPA and that federal law prohibits anyone from reaping more than one crop per seed packet. And in a interesting aside, he explains how a global desire for consistently perfect French fries contributes to both damaging monoculture and the genetic engineering necessary to support it. Pollan has read widely on the subject and elegantly combines literary, historical, philosophical, and scientific references with engaging anecdotes, giving readers much to ponder while weeding their gardens.' -Amazon.com Review

Erudite, engaging and highly original, journalist Pollan's fascinating account of four everyday plants and their coevolution with human society challenges traditional views about humans and nature. Using the histories of apples, tulips, potatoes and cannabis to illustrate the complex, reciprocal relationship between humans and the natural world, he shows how these species have successfully exploited human desires to flourish. "It makes just as much sense to think of agriculture as something the grasses did to people as a way to conquer the trees," Pollan writes as he seamlessly weaves little-known facts, historical events and even a few amusing personal anecdotes to tell each species' story. For instance, he describes how the apple's sweetness and the appeal of hard cider enticed settlers to plant orchards throughout the American colonies, vastly expanding the plant's range. He evokes the tulip craze of 17th-century Amsterdam, where the flower's beauty led to a frenzy of speculative trading, and explores the intoxicating appeal of marijuana by talking to scientists, perusing literature and even visiting a modern marijuana garden in Amsterdam. Finally, he considers how the potato plant demonstrates man's age-old desire to control nature, leading to modern agribusiness's experiments with biotechnology. Pollan's clear, elegant style enlivens even his most scientific material, and his wide-ranging references and charming manner do much to support his basic contention that man and nature are and will always be "in this boat together." -From Publishers Weekly

Interesting book and thought-provoking (just the type of book I like!)especially for anyone who loves plants and/or gardening. I don't agree with all that Pollan writes but it's something for gardeners and all the rest of us to think about.

Beauty Fades, Dumb Is Forever: The Making of a Happy Woman by Judge Judy Sheindlin.

While I haven't watched JJ for a long time and am not a real fan of hers, the book was quite interesting and revealing--just what I like in a good autobiography!

There may have been a couple more books but they don't come to mind right now. What have you been reading or seeing (movies) lately?

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Monday, September 29, 2008

Another week of action? Words CAN hurt you!

Another week of action coming right up! There's a Worker's Comp appointment, a doctor's appointment and an assessment, so far. I'm still waiting to hear about the training and shadowing for my new job. They said they desperately need a new worker but that it's hard to find the time to actually hire one. That seems to be quite true, as I first interviewed in August and had put in the application three weeks before the interview. But SLA's job (where she recently went back after being gone for more than a year) may have a night opening! I've never done that work before but would LOVE to work nights! The Post Office job I had was a night job, from 8 PM to 4 AM--and then I worked in the office I was just fired from as a temp during the daytime. I don't want to double-up on jobs like that again but the other job is a PT job and so is this one. Maybe the two together might work out?

Something that I found out very recently surprised me, in a bad way. It seems that the commonly held notion that it's illegal for past employers to bad-mouth a dismissed employee is incorrect! Yikes, and I heard it from good authority, two different local attorneys. A past employer is allowed (by the virtue of free speech) to SAY WHATEVER THEY WANT TO ABOUT A PAST EMPLOYEE!!!! Even if it's controversial, even if it's not true.

Now, usually an employer, especially a large one will exercise some restraint and caution about bad-mouthing someone. But they don't have to by law, in fact both of the attorneys said that proving a case like that would be very difficult to do--and the employers know it.

The burden of defense would be on ME (or any wronged former employee) to PROVE that the company,
1. Actually made derogatory statements about me to a potential employer, and
2. That those derogatory statements were the primary reason that a potential employer decided not to hire me.

As the attorneys said, that would be extremely hard to prove and it would be a rare case that the wronged employee would actually win such a case. Especially since the potential employer is not going to be at all interested in getting involved in a civil lawsuit against another employer! Thus they will downplay or totally omit anything damaging the former employer said to them and claim other reasons for not hiring.

Isn't that interesting, but in a bad way? I really need to find out what they're saying about me.

How is your week shaping up for action so far?

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Skinny-dipping and stolen vegetables

OK OK, I take back most of what I've said about my Worker's Comp stalkers! Yesterday I called the Employment Finder one, who called me back and she was wonderful! Very supportive and talked with me well over an hour about the interview issues. It was good to discuss it with someone. Blogging it also helped---a lot! So thanks for your support.

After hearing the huge job description (clerical for five different departments but only 80% time) and the particulars, she seemed to feel that it wouldn't be that great of a job. She thought it might be the combining of several different jobs (maybe due to budget cuts) and probably very stressful. So if I get it it's fine with her but even more so if I don't get it. I was relieved and surprised to hear that. She isn't so bad, helpful even. I usually can get along with most anybody, even BZ and her little evil buddy--before I got injured, anyway.

Another WC person called me at 8:00 PM last night for a different reason, the upcoming Dr. appointment. She won't be able to make it and so will send someone else to accompany me. Disappointing, as she and I had talked quite a bit about a strategy to make the Dr. at least stop and talk to us! Every other appt he has just done sort of a fast circle into and out of the room, waving my X-ray and saying all is fine.

A couple of days ago as I was struggling to my feet, out my window I saw a woman inspecting my garden. Like, REALLY inspecting it, brushing leaves with her hands, looking at my vegetables! She walked right down my mini-driveway to the back door and I was all set to race downstairs, thinking she was going to knock at my door. Nobody walks down that far unless they want to knock, as it is quite private. But she didn't knock. In fact she turned around--and stated TAKING squash, zucchini, corn and tomatoes!

I wanted to lean out the deck door and yell, "Hey, stop stealing my stuff!!" until I really took a close look at her. She was older, had long white hair, was using a walker (with a basket to put the stolen vegetables) and had an oxygen tube-thing up her nose. Her clothes were non-matching, and very worn. She looked poor, very poor. The food she was stealing is good, healthy food. I hope it helps.

However, after that I'm going to keep my vegetables somewhat picked so I at least get a few things. Maybe ungenerous of me but I barely planted a garden this year, had difficulties in keeping it watered so it's not very plentiful, like usual. And I've been using the produce as barter, since I don't have much money either. Brought some to the wonderful neighbor who mows my lawn, gave some to the people who fixed my computer, etc. So while she certainly can have a little, I NEED the rest to barter! Not to mention I ate zucchini all last week and this week too (with varying herbs from the front garden), so I'm sort of living off the meager garden, too. I do miss all the tomatoes she took, had given the last batch away and was waiting for these to ripen. Oh well. There's always worse off people. I'm doing relatively well.

And then last night I dreamed of skinny-dipping! It was a meeting for work (not any real workplace, an imaginary, dream workplace) by the ocean. I could smell it and hear the waves. There were families with naked children, not like one would see in the U.S. At 9:00 PM (in the dream) a horn blew as a curfew and the families all left. The adults on the beach started stripping down to nakedness, and more adults arrived. A (imaginary) co-worker and I were shy about just stripping down in front of everyone so we went to the hotel-like structure on the beach, undressed and RAN down the beach. In the dream I was wondering whether to fold my arms to stop things from, er, jiggling as I ran! Interesting dream. Wish I hadn't awakened right then.

Well, what do you have planned for your weekend? Fun, good things, I hope! Have a good one!

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Am I doomed, in yellow suspenders?

Well, got through the interview yesterday. I was nervous before the interview and kind of a basket case afterward in the car but basically it seemed to go well. I arrived early because like most universities, there's a parking hassle and I wanted to be as close to the building where the interview was being held, as possible. I offered to come back later but the receptionist contacted the two interviewers who were raring to go. Actually the raring to go thing turned out to be not so good as the interview lasted a half hour, at the most. It had easy good communication and they were friendly, which is a good sign since they are the two bosses of the position.

They had a series of questions to ask. Now these were just some normal questions but THREE out of the five questions asked had to do with things I'd rather not talk about, yikes! I've not ever been in a position to have employment skeletons in my closet!

A couple of the five questions I was asked: Why was I let go? What would my former supervisor say my best points are? What would she say my weaknesses are? Loaded questions for me now, all three of them.

I did some evasive action, using what they ONCE would have said of me. And I said that my "termination" was due to budgetary constraints (partially true) and some other reasons. Thank God they did not ask, and what are the "other reasons?" It was really stressful and back in the car I was shaking and upset. What if they call my former supervisor, Bossilla!? Even the HR person there would not give me a favorable account, she would say I was fired because of performance issues.

But I did stay calm during the interview (maybe fortunate that it was so short!) and when they had another woman take me around and introduce me to everyone in the office. I used to think the introductions thing was a good sign but now (having worked in HR in two different companies) I know that companies often do that to get the rest of the office workers' opinion about each of the candidates. They are interviewing ten candidates.

Am I doomed to only be able to get entry level jobs--and be LUCKY to get hired, just because my old cruel boss and her two cohorts have blackballed me? I didn't do anything wrong!

Still haven't heard from the part-time job for which I DID get hired. It's a position that college students often take but sounded fun. The money was kind of low but not as bad as some entry-level jobs. They had to do a background check and check my driver's license and had told me it would be a few days before all of that goes through.

Last night I dreamt of yellow suspenders(!?) Have NO idea what that dream was all about. What kind of dreams have you been having lately?

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Intake Took

I'm still waiting to hear back when my training will occur. As part of it I get to shadow three different people. That will be fun! One of the Worker's Comp people called me today for a long chat. The other one is on vacation so I haven't heard from her yet this week, which is unusual. The university HR person called me twice this morning--each time to reschedule the interview. Right now it's tomorrow afternoon and I need to make sure my suit stills fits me and that I have nylons without runs in them.

Yesterday the employment intake took ("intake took" ha ha, I'm easily amused, which is lucky in the scheme of things!) two hours instead of the stated, half-hour. It was for a good reason though, as the big boss wanted to talk with me. That was a good conversation and I got a pretty good idea of some of the details and expectations of the position. I very nearly was LATE for the counseling appointment, though! Then SLA and I went out for dinner. She paid, since she's newly employed after not working for over a year. I had been picking up the tab for the both of us, but we weren't going out very often and went to the cheapest places (excepting for fast food--that's even cheaper but we don't need to be eating that). SLA had about four pit stops along the way but also threw in money for gas. Gas prices have stayed relatively low, compared to how high they've been. I'm keeping my fingers crossed because I'd like to travel to see the kids again soon, once I find out my job schedule. Last night I had a dream about Grandson walking around!

So, how's Tuesday treating you so far?

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Monday, September 22, 2008

Seasoning: A bit of this and a bit of that

The water in the kitchen sink still isn't working. I did use the sprayer attachment while I was doing the dishes right before the water stopped running. In thinking back, that's what happened the other time, too. Except it started working again after about a half hour. I cleaned everything out from under the sink, have been turning those shut-off knobbys on and off but nothing, no water comes out. Guess I'll have to call a plumber.

This morning I go to my new employer to "sign up" with the Social Security Card and all. Then they will schedule a time to train me and then I can sign up for shifts and actually work. It's been so long that I'm just a bit nervous about it. Plus this is a completely new job, I've never done this type of work before. So it should be interesting and exciting.

Right after the new employer I have a counseling appointment today. I had started going only a week before I got fired (talk about good timing!) because of all the stress. After getting fired I went every week for the rest of that month. That horrible termination letter that I was handed at the final interview said that I would have health coverage until the end of the month. But the counseling appointments were denied by my health insurance even though they happened during the same month. A dentist appointment was also denied by my insurance. I ended up having to pay the dentist myself but the insurance finally did kick in for the counseling appointments. It was several hundred dollars and I had absolutely no source of money at the time. So it was a good motivation for me to convince them to pay out! Now I only go to the counseling appointments every three weeks. Even so, it seems to come up quickly. Seems like I just went to one!

I haven't heard anything about Open House yesterday. The Real Estate agent was going to call me right after but he didn't. I'm assuming (sadly) that maybe nobody came to the Open House again. That R.E. company doesn't advertise very well. Probably barely anyone even knew that there WAS an Open House. I'm still hoping some people walked through it, but am doubting that.

Well, it's Monday and the season's are changing today. What is your favorite season, and why?

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Sunday, September 21, 2008

Open House today

The Open House is today, for an hour and a half this afternoon. I've been busy putting finishing touches (and stashing the magazines and paper I tend to accumulate!) to make it look attractive. I want someone to fall in love with it like I did, over two years ago!

Later: Oh bother! The water in the kitchen sink isn't running, neither the hot or the cold. I have no idea why. Every other sink and toilet and bathtub/shower water are all working like usual. The kitchen sink taps did that once before, a long time ago but mysteriously have worked fine ever since--until now. It WOULD happen less than an hour before the Open House! I swear this house just doesn't want to be sold! I wrote a note to the Real Estate Agent who's holding the Open House so he will know about the situation. Geez! Wish me luck!


Friday, September 19, 2008

Answering the call

Well, I've received the call. The Call--as in receiving a job offer! It's a part-time job but I lobbied heavily to the Worker's Comp agent on Wednesday to let me accept it. It would fill in the blank time (interviewers always were asking me, "so, what have you been doing since June?) plus it would be better to ease into FT employment again, if possible. The WC agent spent two hours at my house that day, giving me more job leads and asking questions about my latest job logs.

After much phone-calling to the main offices and waiting to hear back, I was allowed to accept the job. It was 5:00 PM by the time I returned to call to the new employer and so I had to leave them a message. By mid-Thursday they called me back and I was to call their HR office and set up an employment intake appointment. Which I did, it's for next Monday.

I was (a bit) worried whether I could locate my Social Security Card after six years and two moves but it was right where I remembered storing it, thank goodness! I used to carry the SS card with me but about 12 or so years ago we were cautioned not to do that anymore because of possible identity theft. So I found an alternate good place for it and actually remembered after six years where that was. Too bad I can't remember all those "good places" where I've stored various important documents!

Thursday was a red-letter day for yet another job-related reason: I got a call to interview for a position at the local 4-year university! Now that job I would totally love to obtain! The interview is next week, so we'll see about that.

Things seem to be moving along after being stalled for so long. I also have an Open House this Sunday, so have to get the house back in shape. It wasn't too bad, as I try to keep it ready to show at any time, but could use a few touch-ups.

Also, this week has been a great one for re-connecting with friends, got together with FOUR of them separately, at various times this week and talked to several more on the phone! One of my former clients called me, too. I had been tempted to call them since being fired but figured it might be inappropriate. But how nice that one of them called ME! Have a great super wonderful weekend you all!

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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Great Expectations

Lest you think that I'm really on the gravy train since I can (sometimes) sleep in late:

Here are the expectations for the "Rehabilitation Job Placement Plan and Agreement." I had to sign and agree to these in order to receive Worker's Comp payments:

* Full Time job search 6-8 hours per day/5days per week.

* Job search radius is within 50 miles

* 2-3 applications per day

* 2-3 contacts with Job Placement Specialist per week

* Legible daily job logs need to be submitted weekly

* Job Leads followed up within 48 hours

* 2 interviews per week, if possible

* 4-10 cold call job searches daily

My job logs are inspected and questioned. If I don't fulfill the agreement (above) they can cut some or all of my weekly WC payments.

When I mentioned this to friends, they nearly all exclaimed, "But all I had to do was call in every week!" Yes, my dearest pals, but that was for Unemployment Compensation, not Worker's Compensation. The two are different animals. The bright side is that WC pays out higher than EUC. And if my WC ever did disappear, I also managed (in those dark days immed following my firing) to become eligible for UEC.

Something I didn't know, and maybe you don't either is that if you get FIRED from a job, you don't get Unemployment Compensation!!!!!! And I had worked at the job for six years.

I nearly fell over when I received the UEC denial in the mail and wondered what on earth I was going to do--no job, no money and an injury besides. But every week UEC sent me three thick envelopes with essay questions about what had happened, which I completed and returned diligently. In time UEC made a ruling that I was NOT fired for cause, as my ex-employer was declaring and that I was eligible for UEC. Whew! It was a long hard road.

By the time UEC finally was preparing to kick in, the Worker's Comp person at their main office also declared that I was still eligible for WC. She had been appalled that my former employer did not call WC and let them know that I was to be fired. It took a bit of time but she had me reinstated on WC. So guess which one of the Compensations I selected? WC is enough for me to pay the bills while UEC would have been a blessing, for sure, but my housing costs are so high that I would have lost the house. So all is well and I am VERY grateful to the nice woman at WC who fought the battle for me. There are some good people out there who are interested in justice!

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Some things are great

Another day of job hunting looms ahead. But usually I don't start off all that early, since I don't have to. Even if I wake up (or get up) at 6:30, I often don't get showered, dressed and ready until closer to 9:00 AM or even 10:00. (Sorry all you working people. I DO know what it's like to have to get up at 5:00 AM every freakin' weekday morning--and did so my entire adult life, until now.)

Today one of the Worker's Comp people called me shortly after 8 AM. I was awake but still in bed thinking about getting up. When I saw the number on my phone, I quick took a sip of water to avoid the "just woke up" voice. But it didn't work, I had to keep clearing my throat for the first five minutes of conversation. And the conversation went (like WC conversations always do) on and on. Soon I was talking normally but dearly wishing for a cup of coffee and a bathroom pit stop!

The lack of coffee and bathroom break was making me impatient. I actually interrupted the caller twice during our long conversation--not a good thing to do. WC people are the ones holding my fragile purse-strings, it's not wise to tick them off.

Anyway, I was denied a second doctor's opinion and will return to the first, totally uncaring, bone doctor in October. I had wanted a clearance to go to a podiatrist. In the past 3 appointments the bone doctor looked at the X-rays, pronounced the bones all healed and that I should be able to walk around now. He didn't even look at my actual foot, swollen, deformed and purple. I showed him photos of it at one appointment and at each appointment I've come in with crutches and now a cane and was sure to mention the problems I'm still having with it. But the appointments last about a nano-second and they are done. In the past someone had told me that Worker's Comp doctors can only bill a small portion of the actual services, that there is a cap on the fees and so they don't go out of their way at all. At the time I thought that couldn't be true, but now I think it may be a possibility. Oh well. I can't dwell on all of my problems.

Actually, some things are really good, like the sleeping in thing! I get to watch the "Today" show in the morning, which I never got to do. I can stay up really late, if I want to. Finished the 14th Stephanie Plum book, another book by Alexander McCall Smith, "Sex, Lies and Handwriting: A Top Expert Reveals the Secrets Hidden in Your Handwriting." That last book was really good, I've always been really interested in the handwriting = personality thing. And now am working on a basic Philosophy book. I can pretty much pick my own schedule, which is sweet. That schedule does have to include 6-8 hours of job hunting per week day, but now that my computer is repaired I can do a lot of that at home. Like I said--sweet!

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Sunday, September 14, 2008

Meme Meme Meme Meme

Two-word meme, shamelessly stolen from another blog while blog-surfing today

1. Where is your cell phone?
In a cloth glasses case, in my small purse in my backpack. Guess I’m not going to hear it ring! But I have a land line too, because of dial-up.

2. Your significant other?
My house, maybe

3. Your hair?
Growing it out

4. Your mother?
Saw her yesterday, just like usual

5. Your brother?
Saw him on Friday. The other brother I saw a week or so ago.

6. Your favorite thing?
I’d have to make a long list.

7. Your dream last night?
Wandering through a strange convoluted building, I often dream different versions of that.

8. Your favorite drink?
Coffee, I’m back on the pot. (now THAT doesn’t sound so good!)

9. Your dream?
Selling this house, buying a smaller one and making it into an Art and Animal House

10. The room you’re in?
Living room, it’s huge plus it has a loft and vaulted ceiling. Smaller would be good.

11. Your ex?
Which one? Vegetable Man I miss, not the others.

12. Your fear?
What if I can’t find a job? And, just as scary, what if I DO get hired?

13. Where do you want to be in 6 years?
Working only PT, doing art, hanging out with people and animals, growing things.

14. Where were you last night?
Out to dinner with my Mom

15. What you’re not?
Mean, cruel or insensitive.

16. Muffins?
Cranberry Nut or Lemon Poppyseed

17. One of your wish list items?
House with a fence, I've actually found just the one--except I need to SELL this one first.

18. Where you grew up?
Isolated in the country

19. The last thing you did?
Read the Sunday paper, looking for jobs in the Classifieds.

20. What are you wearing?
Two-piece dress with a jacket on because it’s cold in here, with shoes and socks. I’m wearing the only shoes I can fit onto my left foot and need them (shoes) to be able to (sort of) walk/hobble around.

21. Your TV?
I’ve been watching a whole lot more of it lately.

22. Your pets?
No pets, not a one right now. I miss having animals around terribly. In fact I’ve been looking in the Classfieds but since my house is for sale, that may not be such a great idea. Waiting to see how this all turns out would be wiser.

23. Your computer?
Just got it fixed (so now it can’t multiply, ha ha!) It was deathly ill since last spring. It had a bad virus that no prescription seemed to knock out. I did a barter deal and a friend had her husband take it in to the computer hospital where it convalesced for over a week before he brought it back home.

24. Your life?
Strange, more solitary than I’d like right now, very up and down.

25. Your mood?
Thoughtful, a bit lonely.

26. Missing someone?
Yep, my friends.

27. Your car?
Needs repair before wintertime, new tires for better traction, too.

28. Something you’re not wearing?
Make-up. Normally I’ve been bedecking myself with jewelry and make-up right after I get dressed in the morning. It works to cheer me up, so maybe that’s why I’m a bit sad today.

29. Favorite Store?
Thrift stores and rummage/garage sales

30. Your summer?
Not long enough, sad to see it go.

31. Like someone?
My friends

32. Your favorite color?

33. Last time you laughed?
Last night at a movie.

34. Last time you cried?
This morning at a sad news story

35. You are with?
My computer: me ‘n my pal.

35. Who will re-post?
Whoever wants to, I guess. Go for it!

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Saturday, September 13, 2008


Heard on the news briefly this morning that Texas is being slammed by Ike. I had so hoped that either the storm would dwindle into nothingness before landfall or divert to an area where no damage would be done. The news said there are a lot of people who were still there when the storm hit, and it's headed up through Arkansas the last I heard.

Can't they find a way to lessen the impact of these horrible (I refuse to call them--acts of god) manifestations of nature? Some time ago I watched a show about weather modification. It was on PBS, I think, and said that weather mod attempts had been going on since the dawn of humankind but that the scientists in Nazi Germany had actually figured out some methods that worked. The show talked about how a pulse of energy could be used as a weapon to turn weather bad and make bad weather worse. This pulse could be directed to a particular area in order to "attack" that location. Well, I wonder, is THAT what's been happening? Or is that just another conspiracy theory? What do you think?

I went early this morning to take a State exam in HR Asst. At first the test seemed quit daunting but I went back over my answers and actually figured out how to work with the formula of how to come up with civil service scores! There was an entire page devoted to questions on that. There were also questions about employment laws, equal opportunity and the like. I was surprised at how much of that stuff I knew. After all, I did work in an HR Dept for a brief time, and then before that as a temp plus all of THIS stuff since I got fired from my job. But the proof will be in what score I get--can't wait to find out!

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Starting 'em early

Needless to say, Grandson is NOT enjoying the same type of beverage that we adults were drinking!

This was taken over a month ago at his christening. It was performed by his maternal grandmother in a park. Buffalo behind a (tall, strong) fence looked on during part of the reception. I don't have any photos of them. I did take some but apparently the pictures didn't turn out. It was hot outside that day and the buffalo were taking turns rolling in the sand near the inside of their fence.

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Been a long, long time

Oh it's been a long, long time since I've been here. I've really missed you all and reading about your lives. I used to wonder why anyone would ever want to leave, to stop blogging. Now I know. Sometimes there just is not any good thing to blog about.

Most people post a mixture of the good and bad things that are happening in their lives and there is a nice balance. In fact in reading your blogs the balance seems to usually tilt to the good side--which is a wonderful thing!

When the journaling (I use blogging as a journal) becomes a repetition of bad thing/worse thing/bad thing/bad thing it just doesn't make very good reading material. Even the most wonderful and sympathetic reader might just run out of things to say and get fatigued while trying to keep up encouragement to the "down" party. I really didn't want to put you through all of that and switched back to keeping a notebook journal. But I've really missed the social contacts and learning about the daily realities of other people's--YOUR--lives.

Hopefully this blog will have a better balance now of blessings as well as struggle. It's been a long, hard road. Everyone has some trials and turmoil in their lives at some point. This year has made me realize that I've lived a pretty charmed life, in the past. Not too much bad had happened to me (except in childhood--long since past) and maybe I just wasn't appreciating my good life enough. Who knows why bad things happen? Being unemployed for so long has given me the gift of a lot of time to think things over, dream a little, and plan for the future.

Thanks to all of you who kept commenting, some even E-mailing me--I really appreciate your care, concern and support!!!!!

Hope your present is going well, no I hope it's been going GREAT! And that this summer (or winter, for some) is wrapping up to be a pleasant and memorable time! I'm going out to visit some blogs, see ya at your place!