Monday, March 31, 2008

A lot to do:

Make cheesecake crust
Clean up thereafter
have snack
take meds
do nightly pick up ten things in room

Okay it's not really a lot, but I am tired. I woke up with a headache today and took medicine first thing this morning, but it didn't feel like it kicked in until lunch. I had planned to pay a couple of bills on lunch and then realized I had no checks with me. I ran home to get checks to at least pay one bill so ate already paid for lunch while here, then when I went to pay the one bill I had time left to pay there was literally a LINE OUT THE DOOR - cable company and we just switched from Insight to Comcast. I stood in line for ten minutes and it didn't advance at all so I went back to work defeated and frustrated. I did manage to finally set up to pay it online and got it paid from work. Sigh.... At least I felt better physically by then or I wouldn't have been able to take it mentally. I also managed to walk a couple of laps this afternoon, which is about a mile, so got in a little movement, despite the headache.

SO - while Michael was at bike project instead of going to the Y and exercising a full routine, I had to go pay the car insurance because it was past due and tomorrow is class AND I needed to go pick up some medicine because I didn't realize I was out until I was loading my pills for th week last night and I only had one left for tomorrow and it is the diuretic which I can't do without for ONE day or it has terrible effects... AND I needed to buy a cake box for the cheesecake anyway, so I have been running around like crazy all day is the theme of all this rambling... and when we got home a little while ago I lay down and read one chapter of my current trashy novel, then worked for fifteen minutes on dishes so I have a clean place ot prepare said cheesecake crust, then came in here and did this...

Tomorrow I am going to wake up and bake rest of cheesecake, then go see nurse practitioner, then go to work late. Last time I talked to Tamyra RE: cheesecake she had no reservations for the fundraiser for Gretchen (poor Gretchen!) so I decided if it doesn't pan out I will take said cheesecake to Rachael's cafe as sample for baking there. I do hope the fund raiser works out though. I really like Gretchen and think she could be a viable candidate, but it takes LOTS of money to campaign and she is running against an incumbent with backers and moolah already. Sigh. I wish I had money to give.

I was tempted to steal today: I really like red potatoes best. They were $3.99 for five pounds, white potatoes were $3.99 for ten pounds. Even though we don't eat THAT many potatoes we usually use up ten pounds without losing too many to spoilage, certainly not five pounds worth, so it is a better bargain. Then when I took my stuff out to the parking lot and returned my cart to the cart corral, somebody had left a bag of red potatoes in a cart. I was VERY tempted to take them. I didn't for two reasons. One, honesty, they weren't mine. Two - then I would have had fifteen pounds of potatoes, and that IS too many! Michael said he would have taken them, that because they were food the store people would have had to throw them away when they found them. I said what if it just happened five minutes ago and the person realized and then came back and their potatoes were gone? What do you think?

Happy today for: even though my lunch hour was really frustrating I was in the car at just the right time to hear right in a row "Fast Car" and "No Rain." Probably two of my favorite songs ever, and it really helped me feel better right before I went back into work. I hadn't been able to listen to music today because when I have a headache my headphones might as well have a hot iron pole going through my head ear to ear if I try to listen to music!

Editing to add - weight this morning was 216.0, I think. I don't remember exactly, but I remember feeling relieved and not so nervous. I'll be especially glad when it gets back down under the 215, though.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Cookish day...

Made biscuits & gravy, then made a seafood bake (Michael doesn't like casseroles, so I have to name it something else!) for dinner.

Now I have made the pico de gallo and have the pork cooking for enchiladas for dinner for tomorrow. Then I will only have to roll the enchiladas and bake them tomorrow for an easy dinner.

Weight was high again this morning - 216.8. I feel bad and scared about it, but I still feel swollen and even feel like my face looks swollen. I can usually see it under my eyes - they look "baggy" when I have retained a lot of fluid. Maybe I ought to wait until after my period to weigh again. I will have to think about it.

Happy today for: plastic mixing bowls. I have always had stoneware mixing bowls and loved them because they looked so nice in my glass fronted cupboard, BUT they were so damn heavy when I baked and had to pour batter and stuff. A few weeks ago I got a set of plastic mixing bowls on the cheap. LOVE 'EM!!! So much easier when baking and cooking and even washing and using. The stoneware bowls still look pretty in the cabinet, but they are just sitting there looking pretty more and more often.

Hippie Boy is back

and I am happy. He said every minute of this year's trip was better than last year's. He is in bed asleep and I made food, just biscuits and gravy, and I am torn between letting him sleep and waking him to eat. I need to eat. I guess I will just eat without him and let him sleep and we can eat dinner together later, but I'll be sad and lonely. Maybe if I turn on the TV it will wake him. :)

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Happy today for:

Fudge bars, Fudgesicles, fudgicles, fudgies, or whatever YOU like to call 'em. They are yummy goodness and delicious summery fun. I cannot wait for it to truly be summer.

And a short YAY again for Aldi. Even though I spent $104.71 I sure got A LOT of groceries.

Going out tonight with Stephanie to celebrate her birthday and must get her gift ready and get myself ready. It will be best for all involved if I shower.

They say

if you recycle one aluminum can you save enough energy to run a television for three hours. So if I forget to turn a TV off for three hours and nobody is watching it, have I unnecessarily killed one baby aluminum can?

Good morning!

Up to my usual Saturday. I am anxious for Michael to get home so I can hear about the trip. Of course my child goes to Virginia and some loony start shooting off overpasses to give me something to worry about. Today is their day to see a bunch of national monuments and Smithsonian and then they drive home overnight. Last night was National Symphony orchestra.

I could go to Women's Business and art/craft Expo today, but I don't know if I feel like it. I'll just see...

Weight yesterday was 215 and today was 217.4. I FEEL swollen, though and I ate canned soup, canned tomatoes, pickles and elsewhere prepared green beans and meatloaf yesterday so my sodium intake was probably outrageous. PLUS I am soon to period. So fo course I started out today with bacon for more sodium. I probably should up the water intake even more today to flush out. I will be sure to eat at home the rest of the day and watch the sodium the rest of the weekend. As funny as it is that I was freaking out a little to lose weight so quickly, now it is scaring me to go up a little, even though I know it is fluid! I'm just psycho no matter what!

Friday, March 28, 2008


I'm tired.

Women Inspire tonight. Political women. Very nice Vi Simpson was my favorite speaker. I had not met her in person before.

Good food. I probably ate too much.

Just had a tomato and pickle snack and took my meds.

Happy today for: Lots of things as usual, but REALLY happy for meatloaf, made by somebody else, yet still tasting good.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Hodge Podge:

reply to cheesecake proposal:

ok donation and you come to dinner

So I get a good, free Italian dinner next Wednesday! (Well except for cheesecake ingredients and hours of work!)

Class tonight was good. Only two more class meetings and I will have a certificate in Management in the Life Sciences Industry! When I began my new position at the paper I internally committed to one year and that will be over in May so I can basically begin looking for a job now.

I parked a couple of blocks farther away from class than usual and walked for two reasons; ate dinner at Cafe Pizzaria, and the farther walk on purpose. Then went to Target and walked up and down the aisles (not every aisle, but LOTS) as I looked for good clearance items and my weight loss reward. they didn't have the movie I want, but I got some household stuff we need and Easter cookie pans on clearance for my future baking biz! Shoot. I probably should have gotten a separate receipt for those. I need to start keeping track of that stuff. I am going to have to start a sole proprietorship soon.

Loved writing the essay on Comforts of Home. It has been in my head for a long time and it is finally OUT! That is really the first draft, so it will probably undergo some revision.

Happy today for: Still saw the one purple crocus, blooming even BIGGER and THREE yellow blooms, AND bought new pens at Dollar General when I went to buy a can of soup for lunch. I LOVE new office supplies. AND I ate a Cadbury Caramel egg today. I looked up the nutritional info. 170 calories of pure fat and sugar bliss.

Speaking of which, weight this morning was 214.6, so up the tiniest bit, but still under 215, and you can't go down every day and like I said, it was scaring me to do so.


Comforts of Home

I work for a nice company. Nationally, it is large. The company owns several media outlets, such as newspapers, radio and TV stations and publishing businesses across the country. Despite the scope and the millions, maybe billions of dollars, however, it is truly family owned. There is no plan for a “public offering,” and the patriarch of the family knows little old me by name. For some reason I don’t understand he and his wife split most of their time between Bloomington and South Bend, Indiana. I don’t imagine he knows everyone across the nation by name, but I would like to think that many or even most of the employees have at least met or know some member of the family. There are still many aspects of the company that are run in a family company manner. Until recently Scott (yep, we’re on a first name basis) held a publisher’s dinner annually where you got a chance to sound off about anything you wanted and he always made sure to tell you happy birthday if he was around on your day. When he had to mostly retire from functioning as publisher due to age and some health issues, the man he hired to take over was a Bloomington native whose first job had been as a newspaper carrier as a child! It can’t get any home-townier than that! Many people stay with this company twenty, thirty, forty years and retire from here. I feel like that is a good indicator of how nice it can be to work here!

A few years ago when I had small children my son was sick. I took the day off to stay home and care for him. When I was filling out my time card for the week (no time clocks here!) I asked my manager if I had any sick days to take. He replied, “Just write it down as a sick day. I want you to know you are able to take care of your family when you need to.” I am grateful for the homey touches. We have pitch-in dinners around the holidays, our editor is usually simply, “Z,” and when I couldn’t get out of the driveway because the snowplow plowed me in, Rex came and fetched me in the four wheel drive so there would be someone in the office to answer the phone.

There are some benefits my little newspaper actually being part of a large company. Because of the true size of the company the benefits are able to rival some of the major corporations. Group rates for insurance, retirement plans and wellness options are nice. Those benefits seem to shrink a little every year, but I believe that also plagues much of the corporate culture these days. Mostly, however I am grateful for the homey touches.
Last year, the unthinkable happened. Our women’s bathroom went corporate.

Of course we have a modern, three-stall bathroom. With many employees in the building at one time, even three stalls upstairs and three stalls downstairs can get full. Even with the multiple stalls in effect, the upstairs bathroom is a sweet little place with an outer sitting room with a chaise lounge, a small table, a chair and a mirror where you can put on your makeup if you just couldn’t manage before you got to work that morning! That chaise has been the solution to many a work-induced headache, and is the perfect spot for a good cry that is just a little too personal to have at your desk. Often if employees have beauty products they realize they aren’t going to use they will bring them and leave them in the restroom so sometimes nice lotions, pretty-smelling sprays, high-quality hand creams and stuff that is fun to try is available to try. And for about nine of my past ten years there was nice toilet paper. Not soft-scented Charmin, not Quilted Northern, still kind of generic, single roll, wrapped in tissue, sold in bulk by the case for cost toilet paper, but NORMAL toilet paper. Then, the unthinkable. One day I entered my favorite stall (the first one) and mounted on the wall was one of those GINORMOUS, two compartment toilet paper holders, that holds the GINORMOUS rolls of corporate toilet paper. It has the little slidey door on the bottom so when one roll runs out you slide it on over and begin on the second ginormous roll. Sigh… What happened to the comforts of home? What happened to normal toilet paper? What happened to normalcy? Next thing you know, they’ll take away my mirror and expect me to put on my makeup at home every morning! Maybe it’s time for a letter to the editor, Hey Z! It’s time to start the annual publisher’s dinners again. I have something important to say about our company culture and it starts right at the bottom.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

OMG, you say, what now?

Well one more. About the cheesecake issue. Tamyra wants me to just bake them at home and sell them to the restaurant, even though I told her from the very beginning that I would want to use her licensed kitchen, that I am not comfortable working commercially from home, that I have nothing to lose if I get sued I'd have to go bankrupt, etc. She said something like, "well, we don't have to tell anybody it's from a home kitchen or have your name on it. I had an arrangement like that with another woman before." I had also told her if we put them on her menu I want my name on the menu! So tonight I sent her this email.

How about I donate the cheesecake for the April 2nd event?

Either I can donate the cheesecake and please ask in return can I attend the dinner with the cheesecake as my donation. That gives not as much value as the $50 suggested donation, but saves on the expense of the dinner AND gives Gail and Gretchen one more friendly face in the house.

OR I donate outright and it is counted as an "in kind" donation toward Gretchen's campaign?

The reason I am suggesting is because right now I am comfortable with the idea of baking at home and donating to a not-for-profit organization as I do it all the time for Michael's orchestra. Then it gives me a couple more weeks to think about the event that is a little further down the line and resolving my feelings about the licensed kitchen issues or thinking of a solution. One reason I want a solution to the problem is because if my cheesecakes are being sold commercially somewhere I WANT them on a menu with my name - Hope's Homemades (which I need to get registered) because if I do hope to successfully market someday I want brand recognition right away. Therefore I don't want to do it "under the table" so to speak.


I can't believe a restaurant owner would risk doing that. She has received perfect inspections every time the Health department has inspected her and the results are in the paper. But she has never been to my house. For all she knows I could let my cat walk on the counter while I bake, never wash my hands, and sneeze in the batter. I don't do any of that, but it is true that I don't even OWN a dishwasher and I hardly ever mop my floors!

One more post:

Happy today for: asparagus for 97 cents a pound! Yummy! We already had one bunch for dinner. Now Michael is gone on orchestra trip and I get the rest all for me. Hee hee! Asparagus for lunch tomorrow - well, except I've been trying to eat at work to save gas so maybe not until dinner. But tomorrow for sure, well, except I have class after work so maybe for bedtime snack, except wait, I'm trying to remember to have a carb for snack. My goodness, WHEN do I get to have my next bunch of asparagus?! Whateveer... I'm still STINKIN' HAPPY for asparagus at a great price!

Weight Loss

Here is the new goal: To be under 210 by the end of April. That means the scale will read 209.8 or under by April 30. Rewards possible are new pair of jeans, or if cannot afford the jeans, will search diligently for new summery top from Thrift store.

I realized yesterday that I have plenty of psychological issues with weight loss. Even though I have been losing weight steadily recently, seemingly without trying, it occurred to me that I might ask Gina from work if she would go shopping with me. Let me introduce you to Gina. I have known her many years, long before we began to work together. She was a great support to me when I was in my marriage. She has been through some rocky roads herself and seems to have come through quite well balanced. Also she is very physically fit and has encouraged me well and appropriately in my efforts to exercise consistently and to eat well. Sometimes when people encourage me I react by feeling rebellious and behaving exactly opposite. Gina always knows the right thing to say and I never feel rebellious toward her encouragement. She is a really good example to me in a lot of ways and I really admire her. Now really, I probably don't need shopping advice. I actually buy quite healthy food because Michael prefers it and I try to have what he likes available for him. I am actually well read and educated in nutrition having taken diabetes education classes and just reading a lot and researching on my own. For some reason, however, I felt like I would like support from Gina on a shopping trip. When I imagined it, however, I almost went into a panic attack! What the heck?! Like I said, Gina has supported me well in the past and I know she would if I asked her, unless there were some reason she absolutely could not.

Last night Michael and I were talking a little bit about the weight loss because of the possibility of achieving the goal today - a month earlier than planned or expected. I said it kind of scares me and he was really surprised by that. I talked a little about how there are lots of psychological issues involved with weight loss and that some of them involve sexuality and that he doesn't want to talk about those with his mom! My first issue is that I am afraid of losing it too fast that I won't be able to maintain it. That for some reason it will be a temporary change and nothing that I am able to maintain life long. I want to make sure that whatever I am doing I can do it FOREVER. It was so disappointing and discouraging last time to regain the weight. I was very harsh on myself emotionally and very judgemental. Also I know it is harder on your heart and metabolism to lose weight and regain it than just to have stayed fat. Another issue is that the attention can be difficult to bear. It is kind of mixed when people start to notice and comment on the weight loss. When I lost fifty pounds before sometimes I felt like nobody noticed and I couldn't wait for somebody to compliment me or mention or ask if I was losing weight. Other times I would HATE it when people would comment on my weight loss, even when I knew they meant it as a positive and encouraging thing. It felt like such a personal battle and so intimate. Maybe I can compare it to when a woman is pregnant and suddenly people feel like they are allowed to touch your belly. When you are losing weight, they don't physically touch you like that, but it is a very emotional thing (especially if you compulsively eat because of emotional issues) and wanting to talk about it invades your emotional "space." The third issue for me has to do with sexuality. I have been pretty happy the past many years being mostly relationship-free. I have dated a few times, had a few crushes and had a couple of flings. For the most part, however, being fat has kept me pretty "safe." Fat is undesirable to most men in our society. Therefore I have been safe from the complications of having any serious relationship. I really enjoy my uncomplicated life! You know I find happiness in every day. I find happiness in my home, my family (for the most part! :) ) , with my friendships, in my projects, my hobbies, my work, working toward my career goals for the future and all that. Yeah, I get lonely for male companionship every once in a while (thus, the couple of flings), but WHY in the world would I want to complicate all that with the possibility of actually becoming physically attractive to a wider range of men and expanding the potential for a serious relationship when I could be protected from all that by this lovely fat? PLUS, historically, every time I have had a serious relationship with a man I chose some asshole who abused me in some way! Can I trust myself that I have grown up enough and learned enough to actually make correct judgments about men and their sanity, maturity and kindness levels? I don't know. That is the scariest thing of all. That I would open myself up to further abuse and ruin myself further. So yeah, getting losing weight means more than getting healthy and and taking less medicine. That's all good. It means an increase in doubt and fear.

Big Report:

Public Notices Growth Project
Summary March 25, 2008

Taking over the Public Notices position was a three phase plan: Phase one involved fully mastering the position and the training involved. Ten months in the position have included two “rounds” of the required governmental display Budget Notices and Annual reports. Those have definitely been the busiest times and I was able to efficiently process the notices with a minimum of production errors. The first round did include several AR corrections, but only one AR correction was necessary with the second batch. Notices that are processed as line ads through the Falcon system are easily processed and generally there are few errors.

Phase two was to make the process more efficient if possible. The biggest step toward more efficiency has been simply having a full time employee dedicated to the position. It has decreased the “crunch” at the end of the month for billing purposes, because proofs are usually done daily and has also freed Sue and Leah to complete the other aspects of their positions more completely and less stressfully. The purchase of the scanner with OCR capability has decreased the need for typing in many cases. This also allows Joyce and Donna to fulfill other job duties. Another way I have made the process more efficient is by encouraging all new customers and many existing customers to place ads by email. The notices are more efficient to process and less prone to error. IU now places most of the Notices to Bidders over email and the County and City governments are beginning to place more ads electronically – it depends on department and individual in those cases.

Another step toward making the Public Notice processing more efficient was to make me a complete backup for Pam in Martinsville. This has not yet been completed. Leah has been too busy with other projects to complete my training. I have access to the Martinsville PBS and have understanding of part of the process, copies of the rates and good communication with Pam. I feel like if it came down to a pinch I could enter the notices, although some corrections to the rates or billing might have to be made. With the integrated billing system soon to be implemented I think we might as well wait until it is fully functional to complete this training. I process the copies of Proof of Publication for the Morgan county papers as well as the Herald-Times so that task has been removed from Leah.

Phase three of the transition to a full time Public Notices Employee was to find ways to grow revenue in the category. I did quite a bit of research online, with other newspapers and in some publications. I began by emailing ten newspapers that I felt were similar markets in size, or because they were a college town or a mixture or urban/ rural community etc. Questions Susan and I agreed I would ask were:

1) Are you experiencing gains or losses in this category?
2) Can you estimate what percentage of your revenue comes from government legal notices vs. others?
3) Do you aggressively pursue any of this business and if so, how?
4) Do you offer upsells such as bold headlines, attention getters, etc?
5) Are your Legal Notices run online? If so, do they run in your classified online section or do you sell them other online ad positions (i.e.: skyscrapers, leaderboards, etc)?

I also inquired as to how rates work and what they are. For example, does their paper use flat rates for certain types of notices or lines rates only.

Several papers did not respond to my inquiries at all or seemed hostile toward my questioning. Some responses provided useful information.

1) Are you experiencing gains or losses in this category? Every paper who answered this questioned is generally down. I was surprised that Leslie from Terre Haute mentioned specifically that Sheriff’s Sales notices are down. It seems with the current mortgage foreclosure scares and real estate problems they should be up. I also wonder if they have a system for tracking these specifically. As far as I know, we would not have a way to do that. I wonder if that would be helpful for us to do.
2) Can you estimate what percentage of your revenue comes from government legal notices vs. others? Those who answered estimate that 90% or more of their revenue come from governmental notices. I ran a report on all of our revenue from public notices in 2007. Total revenue was $xx,xxx.95. Only 28% ($xx,xxx.57) of that was from governmental notices. I believe the representatives from these papers misunderstood that the question asked specifically about revenue. It seems impossible for them to claim that much of their revenue comes from governmental notices at the extremely low governmental rates, when their private party rates are higher than ours. I feel like governmental notices take 90% of the work for 28% of the revenue!
3) Do you aggressively pursue any of this business and if so, how? A flat NO from everybody. Leslie from Terre Haute said, “We look at it as a line we cannot influence.”
4) Do you offer upsells such as bold headlines, attention getters, etc? One yes on bold as an upsell, one yes on a border as an upsell with a $5.00 rate, one paper charges $15.00 for each Publisher’s Affidavit for private parties, rather than including them in the rate, which surprised me.
5) Are your Public Notices run online? If so, do they run in your classified section online or do you sell them other online ad positions? Everybody runs them online – nobody sells special positions or anything like that.

Every paper who answered my question about rates charges more than we do for non-governmental public notices. We charge $1.00 per line per insertion. South Bend charges flat rates for some types, then $1.25 - $6.85 per line per insertion, depending on the day of the week, and even higher rates for notices coming from out of state. Elkhart also has flat rates for some types of ads, but did not disclose line rates. Terre Haute charges $2.87 per line. In Lafayette the Journal and Courier charges some flat rates then some line rates varying between 69 cents per line per day up to $1.43 per line PLUS $15.00 for each affidavit.

I also inquired of two newspapers in larger markets, the Indianapolis Star and the Chicago Tribune. Despite repeated attempts I never received a response from the Star.
The representative of the Tribune, however, was helpful and surprised me with a couple of her replies. Not surprisingly, like the smaller papers, the Tribune is also experiencing losses in this category, and does not really “pursue” business – with the exception that she mentioned they “bid” on government contracts – so state laws considering governmental notices must be different in Illinois. I was surprised to learn that the Tribune does charge an extra fee to place the notices online - $15.00. There are no special positions or other pricing available. The notices appear online only in the regular classifieds. Bolding is available for a percentage of the ad price – so it sounds like they bold the entire ad if it is purchased – the representative mentioned it is not a good seller. I can see why it would be a poor seller as many types of legal notices such as notices of suit or other court proceedings are regarded as what is referred to as “sewer service” by many. A law professor quoted in one New York Times article (Nov. 19, 2007), explained that often the person placing the ad really does not want the defendant to see the ad and act upon it, so the printed notification is comparable to the fraudulent practice of merely pretending to serve papers. The rates at the Tribune are a mix of flat rates and line rates, some also dependent on day of publication. All are much higher than ours, which makes sense because of the larger, metropolitan market and circulation.

One idea I pursued was to contact the Indiana State Bar Association about the possibility of obtaining a contact list of attorneys, especially those who handle class action suits. I received one reply questioning if I wanted to purchase “mailing labels” or needed a referral. Even though I indicated that I was interested in purchasing labels and followed up I never received another reply. I will inquire again, perhaps a written inquiry, rather than email will be more effective.

Another idea to increase revenue was to pursue having the Town of Ellettsville place all their required Public Notices with the Herald-Times rather than the Ellettsville Journal. I wrote an initial inquiry to the Town Clerk- Treasurer in December with a proposal. In the letter I demonstrated through circulation figures of both subscribers and single-copy sales that the Herald-Times is truly the primary paid newspaper of record in the Ellettsville area. I failed to follow up on my proposal with the holidays, my subsequent illnesses and then the Annual Township Report season immediately following. I will follow up on this now. My proposal is to watch a month of the Ellettsville Journal, see what notices the town runs and to see what a comparable cost would be for them to run in the Herald-Times. I propose we then schedule a meeting with town officials to woo them over. We can impress them with our efficiency and accuracy. Prices should actually be comparable, unless there is a huge difference in column size, because the rates will be the governmental rates. I would guess that after we woo them over the Town would not be able to implement the change until 2009 because of the political process necessary for appropriations and budgeting. I should probably begin tracking the notices in the Journal as soon as possible toward this.

One small change I have already implemented is the use of bold type for headers within many of the notices. Although there is no extra charge for the bold it occasionally makes the notices run an extra line which can add two or three dollars to the price of a notice. It also makes it easier for customers to find their notices when they search the paper. Most of the phone calls or email inquiries I get from customers who cannot find their notices are from those whose notices do not have a bold header.

Further ideas toward increasing revenue would be to set a flat rate for a couple of types of notices. I think likely candidates would be for name changes and Notice of Administration. Often these are placed by out of town Attorney offices or by individuals. They call to inquire how much they will be and cannot be told a set price until after they have filed and received their Cause number from the Clerk of Court, then send in the notice, it is entered in the system, etc. If these customers could be told a flat rate upon initial inquiry the office or individual could place the notice and pre-pay all at once, removing several steps and some waiting time in the processing. The new flat rates could be determined by averaging several of each type of notice and setting perhaps just a little bit higher, so we are sure to maintain at least current levels of revenue and perhaps increase.

We should create a new rate specifically for Sheriff’s Sales. Most of those ads are placed by large, out-of-town attorney’s offices and the costs are passed on as part of the debt of the sale. Those offices are used to paying the higher rates of the other papers and probably wouldn’t notice an increase in line rate by as much as 25 or 50%. We could keep the “local legal” line rate for truly local legal offices who mostly do Notice of Administration or Name Changes, unless we decide to set flat rates for those types of ads. We should increase our private Local Legal line rate for other notices. The Terre Haute Tribune-Star, which has similar daily circulation, charges nearly THREE TIMES ($2.87) the line rate that we do.

Action Items to be Completed

Indiana State Bar Association: Continue to pursue list of attorneys to contact for Class Action advertising.
Complete training Hope for Martinsville/ Mooresville backup once integrated billing system is implemented.
Continue to pursue Town of Ellettsville governmental notices by tracking – begin month of April? Can we get a subscription for me so I don’t have to scrounge from newsroom?
Decide new rate structure and implement as soon as possible.

In conclusion, it is worth paying me full-time to continue the improvement process, make Leah and Sue happier, and free them as well as Joyce and Donna to perform their other tasks more efficiently. As we raise rates and revenue increases exponentially, I should receive an initial bonus and then a large hourly raise.



I get a reward and Friday is payday and Michael will be gone on the orchestra trip so I get to go shopping in a leisurely fashion.

I will set a new goal for April.

I plan to write a lengthy post about weight loss later. Get prepared.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


So on campus I saw a guy in a gorilla suit and a guy in a banana suit walking along, but what I thought was really unusual was that the guy in the banana suit was drinking out of a bottle of hot sauce. I had to comment on it and he replied, "I'm a Mexican banana!." So of course the response is, "Then you MUST be a Chiquita!"

Yesterday I got an email from Gail, a Women Inspire member who is working to promote a U.S. Department of Peace. She is also campaigning actively for Gretchen Clearwater, who is in the first stages of running for congress in our district. Listed below, she says, please take note of fund raiser dinners taking place in April for Gretchen's campaign...which take place at a certain cafe I have mentioned before. Lo and behold, on ONE menu is lemon cheesecake with raspberry sauce, and on another is chocolate cheesecake. Have I been ASKED yet if I will sell or donate said cheesecakes? NO!! Yet an email has been distributed to a mailing list with them on the menu! TODAY I received an email from Tamyra about ordering cheesecakes in April. April is like ONE WEEK away and the first dinner that had cheesecake on the menu is the day after I have a class... I am supposed to call Tamyra tonight to discuss. We never have solved my problem of unlicensed kitchen. I wonder if it is for a non-profit fundraiser if it counts, because I donate stuff to orchestra events all the time, yet if she is selling it in her food establishment what are the laws?

I might even be willing to donate at least the time for Gretchen's campaign. I have talked to her a lot and really like her. So maybe I would charge Tamyra at cost for ingredients and then be able to eat the rest of the dinner for free or something because the dinner is suggested $50 donation. I am still pretty pissed at my food being put on the menu without it being finalized, especially when I had talked to Tamyra about if I would be able to use her licensed kitchen to bake etc. This could be a great opportunity to get my name and taste out there for some further opportunity, but not if it is not done well or I am not ready for it. I spoke to someone about rented kitchen space in their licensed kitchen and she said I would have to get my "Serv-Safe" certification first. I am not ready to do that until I finish my current Life Sciences classes and budget for the expense. Rant. Rant. I have to be calm by the time I talk to Tamyra so I can be all business-like and mature.

Weight this morning was 215.0. I ate like a pig today, including two diet sodas and fast food. I bet it will be up tomorrow. I also still need to have a bedtime snack to take my medicine. If I do hit that 214.8 tomorrow morning I will probably come in here and post at 6:30 a.m.!

Well, I still need to go have said snack, start a load of laundry, change for bed, warm my freezing feet and probably do some other crappy housework too.

Happy today for: well said banana story was really amusing, AND AND on the same day it rained half inch chucnks of ice for about three minutes I saw an actual BLOOMING bright purple crocus. Whoopee!!!!!!! Oh! AND I finished my Big Report at work. Boring as hell, but I might post it here, just to show that I do actual work at my job (sometimes).

Monday, March 24, 2008


I've been working on that closet some more. I thought I had everything out except the stuff I want in and then I found this box topped with all this violin music. I certainly don't play the violin. I have four boxes of Emily's stuff to take to the garage. I will keep the American Girl dolls and the violin case inside. I don't want them out with the spiders and where the raccoons and opossums come in sometimes in the summer. I told Emily I would keep her stuff until she graduates and gets a real job and then she will have to get her stuff. I hope to be moving across the country soon after that!

We had yummy homemade pizza for dinner tonight. I love having it made for me, but I love making it myself and getting just what I want too!

I am pretty tired tonight. I skipped official exercise and subbed working on the closet instead. I know it doesn't really "count" but there is only so much time in a day, you know!

Happy today for: all kinds of stuff, but especially for the secret little thrill I get knowing that documents that get used by the government are signed with my "Hello Kitty" multi-color pen. It just happens to be set on black so I can use it for official stuff.

Can't believe it.

Weight this morning 215.2.

I swear I am eating. It has to be a water thing.

That's all.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy today for:

Carole King: Tapestry One of my favorite, most singable albums EVER.

I must remember to tell the children that "Beautiful" is one of the songs that must be played at the party after I die. "You've got to wake up every morning with a smile on your face and show the world all the love in your heart!" I don't always manage, but I sure wish I could! The other ones I have already told them are "Good Riddance" by Green Day, "No Rain" by Blind Melon and "Send Me on My Way" by Rusted Root.

Spaghetti sauce is great. I simmered it for six and half hours! The flavors should be well blended by now! My pasta is cooking.. Sadly I am out of the nice, high-protein pasta and using the cheap, white-flour pasta Mom and Dad brought and left on one of their visits.

I hate Indiana/ ABC Meme/ Thoughts

It's snowing like a freakin' blizzard!

Meme copied from Randi's blog: just for fun.

A-Available - Available for having fun, available for a relationship, available for more time commitments, that might be questionable!

B-Best friend - I feel like I have a lot of best friends, but long term is probably Lu.

C-Cake or Pie? - Cake, chocolate, with chocolate frosting.

D-Drink of choice: Pepsi, but I try to drink water to help with my swelling problems. I'm not sure why drinking MORE water helps you retain LESS water. I know it has to do with solubility and stuff like that, but I wish I could drink more of the tasty stuff!

E-Essential - Creative things to do.

F-Favorite color - Blue. I really like cobalt blue.

G-Gummi bears or worms: Bears, lick 'em and stick 'em. I don't really like to eat either of them.

H-Hometown: Well, born in Lafayette, but I have lived in Bloomington longer now, so consider it home.

I-Indulgence: Chocolate malts

J-January or February: Hate them both in Indiana, too damn cold. But I guess, maybe February if I had to choose, because Valentine's day is happy fun.

K-Kids and names: Already done with that! At one point I had TEN names picked out for children. I ended up using three of them, Emily, Megan and Michael. I had to use Brittain for Michael's middle name because it is Ed's family name, but I wouldn't have chosen it otherwise. I don't hate it or anything, though.

L-Life: is busy, happy and sometimes a little tiring.

M-Marriage date: I am repressing it. I don't know if there will ever be a second one.

N-Number of siblings: 3

O-Oranges or apples: Oranges. I like apples, but can only eat them if they are cooked, otherwise I have an allergic reaction that is really severe!

P-Phobias: I don't really think I have any TRUE phobias. I don't like heights. Sometimes I wonder if like being home alone so much that I could develop agoraphobia, but if I start to think it is happening I will get help immediately because I know I have to be able to function.

Q-Quote: Hmmm... I don't know if I have a favorite quote. There is one that says something about dancing that I printed out and posted at work and then I added "and sing." but I can't remember exactly how it goes! Erin? Oh I have one posted on my door from Frank Lloyd Wright. It says, "Room, Peace, Comfort" I also posted Patti Field's "Goals for Children" and subtitled it, "For everybody, really." If anybody is interested in knowing what those are, comment and I will post them, They are fantastic!

R-Reason to smile: Paying bills on time!

S-Season: Summer and Spring and fall, anything but winter!

T-Tag - you're it!

U-Unknown fact about me: Oh gosh. I don't know if there are any unknown facts about me. I write about every trivial event in my life! Maybe I will have to go back into my past.... ummmm... I never went to a high school prom.

V-Vegetable you don't like: So far I haven't found a way I like eggplant.

X-X-rays you have had: Teeth, elbow, wrist, ankle, shins, feet, head.

Y-Your favorite food: Chocolate frosting, but Michael says I'm not allowed to say that because it isn't real food, but I think it is! Of REAL food, probably chicken.

Z-Zodiac: Libra - I guess that is why I am a perfect balance of neurotic and normal!


I have been thinking of my brother Bobby a lot today. My niece Barbara got married yesterday (Congratulations Barbara!) and I wonder if it was a little bittersweet for the family with him not there. He was such a great man and a wonderful father. I miss him terribly and Michael misses him terribly and we didn't even get to see him that often. I can't even imagine what it must be like for Karen and his children. My heart aches just typing that short paragraph. I remember how at Kwanzaa dinner Michael named Bobby as the ancestor he would like to honor and it touched my heart so much. I wish Michael could still have Bobby in his life. Michael will spend half the summer at his dad's, but I am thinking of asking him (along with cooperation of my nieces, who may be reading this!) if he is interested in going out west without me for a couple of weeks so he can see my nieces and especially my nephew in laws so he can see some more positive male role models who are not crazy, bi-polar assholes like his father. I would hate not seeing Michael for that long this summer, but I couldn't afford tickets for both of us, especially with the fares going up with the oil prices. When we get the "economic stimulus check" however, I might spend it on a ticket for him if we come to a plan.

Spaghetti sauce is simmering and the house smells heavenly Italian. I put in some extra rosemary from what Christie gave me for my birthday and I dried. It is going to be extra rosemary sauce. I didn't put in that much, but it must get extra concentrated when you home-dry it!


Weight this morning 216.8. And I felt like I ate like a pig yesterday and I only exercised a little bit. I had felt really swollen on Friday and had even drunk a double strong batch of green tea because of it, so I must have peed out a lot of fluid throughout the day! My weight can fluctuate pretty wildly sometimes depending how much fluid I am retaining.

Today's goals are simply to exercise and make a big pot of spaghetti sauce to freeze. If we have it in the freezer it keeps me from using the bottled sauce, which is convenient and tasty, but full of bad-for-you stuff.

I also will probably work on tasks toward getting the closet finished, although completion is not on the list for today. AND my room needs vacuumed so terribly, it is disgusting. I keep it pretty uncluttered, but never dust or vacuum and it is getting WAY too obvious!

Easter is today and I am a little sad to not be celebrating, but not having a big meal will be good for me. I stressed out too much through the other holidays and it will be good for me mentally to have an alone day. I know there are people in town whom I could have made aware that I am spending the day alone and the situation would have changed, but I consciously chose not to.

Yesterday I ended up watching a movie - "Something's Gotta Give" that I knew Michael wouldn't want to watch. I will probably treat myself to another one today. It will be even nicer today because I won't have the pressure of having to have stuff done in time to get ready to go somewhere and stuff.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Luna Music Fest is over.

I want to write about it. but I think I am too tired tonight. I need to have a snack, take my meds, drink some water and get to bed. I ate too much chili today and I had heartburn during the nusic, and then I kind of got a headache, but it was GREAT!

Happy today for: Remote control. I had a time when I was really cold and I was taking a break from chores and I was in bed trying to warm up my feet and it was so nice to be lazy and flip TV channels with remote control. Remember the old days when you had to actually STAND UP and walk over to the TV to change the channel? No wonder we always wanted to sit right in front of the TV when we were little!

Where is my inspiration?

Now TLC has substituted some other dumb show for "Clean Sweep" and I need Peter the Organizer to make my weekend complete. I hate the Powers that be at TLC this weekend.

Weight this morning was 217.8.

I worked on the closet a BUNCH last night. What a chore. I need boxes to pack away stuff. Emily's journals and scrapbooks are all still here. I keep all my paperback books in the garage, but she had moved all the classics in here, now I want them back out and that will be a big task. Prom dresses, which she says she needs to see before she knows if she wants to keep or not, a couple of other dresses that must be Heather's, an orange plastic raincoat (!?), lots of games, an old computer, including monitor, keyboard and wires..... blah. I have to hook up the computer before I can get rid of it and make sure of two things; that it doesn't have any private stuff on it AND it is my last resort for the first draft of "The Stone Cold Heart" because Michael thinks I might have saved it on the hard drive of that computer. Right now I have just tossed a lot of the stuff out into the room so the house smells like dust and dirt and too-long stored stuff and I hate it. I am blowing my nose and sneezing more than usual. I already had a congested ear all day yesterday and took Sudafed last night before I started working on it. I'll probably have to be totally allergy medicated by the end of the weekend.

Ugh. Well. I'll keep working a little at a time and it will eventually be done. I need to get some trash and recycling to the dump today, check in with a friend by email, make some chili, exercise, and be ready to go volunteer at our Luna Music Fest by 5:00.

I ate a bowl of twigs and woodchips, but I am ready for something spicy so I am going to go work on my chili! I may be having a chili brunch!

Friday, March 21, 2008


No "What Not to Wear!" They're showing that weight loss guy from Sunday again! Sunday seemed like common sense advice, but on the commercials is looks like he uses Emotional Freedom Technique tapping and I am highly suspicious of that. Damn TLC. I need Clinton and Stacy.

Well "Good Eats" is on Food Network. I'll see what Alton is talking about tonight. I planned to watch Clinton and Stacy while I worked on the closet in this room. I definitely need entertainment while I sort out this stuff. Sigh...

Happiness and Health

Going to do Happy today for first today: Big Lots Store. I went in to see if there were any more of the "Balance" Protein bars I bought a box a few weeks ago - 15 for $5.00 - Usually sell for $1.00 each or more. No more of those, but a box of 30 Fiber One bars for $5.00. The protein ones are a little more what we aim for, but we try for high fiber too. We affectionately call a lot of the cereals we eat twigs and woodchips! At Kroger a box of Fiber One is usually around $3.00 for 6 bars. YAY for a great bargain.

Health: Here is a concrete goal with timeline and reward. My current morning weight is usually around 218. By the end of April is will be UNDER 215. That means the scale will read 214.8 or less. Within one week of the first day the scale reads 214.8 or less I will reward myself with either: the DVD or the soundtrack "Magnolia," a movie in the theatre, OR a crossword puzzle book from Dollar Tree, depending on my financial situation at that time.

I hesitated about putting the actual number here because I am a little embarrassed, but decided to go for it. Here is the scoop. My highest weight ever is 234. When I lost the weight before and felt really fit, the year I hiked Timpanogos, I was down to 180. I have always thought my goal weight should be 150. My wellness coach at the insurance place says more like 172 or something, I'd have to check. My current mid-range goal is to be under 200 by August. I am basing that on a couple of things. Number 1, that is when my 25 year class reunion is - even though I am starting to lean more toward not going, unless Byron comes from New York, or Jeff comes from Virginia. Number two, that amount of weight represents about the 10% that is supposed to be the magic number that will start me toward decreasing my medications and reducing my heart risk etc. My cholesterol is fantastic, but my triglycerides are very high and I think having them way out of proportion is directly related to the abdominal obesity and a very bad heart attack risk. My goal is to live at least until Michael graduates from high school so he never has to go live with his dad, so I have to last at least two a half more years.

When I lost the weight before I lost 8 - 10 pounds a month. I decided to go much slower this time. I think I can make a more permanent lifestyle change. I think can do it with less risk of injury (What hung me up last time was a stress fracture from too many miles and then I started gaining it back!). Also because of my now chronic illnesses and the recent acute illnesses I am trying to be kinder to my body and last time I was VERY strict with my exercise regimen and unforgiving of errors or omissions.

Most weight loss people say that you shouldn't weigh yourself daily because it is too discouraging. I need to weigh myself daily, however to make sure I don't gain 10 or 12 pounds overnight because of kidney failure.... So my morning weight is what I count. I will try to remember to record it daily and believe me y'all will know when I hit 214.8. I will also make sure that you know I really do reward myself when Appropriate. I think that is one reason I have gotten a little discouraged. I always think I want a CD reward and then feel like I can't afford it. So I thought of an always affordable reward that will still be a rare treat that I can get even if it is a "poor week" when (not if!) I hit the goal!

Going to sign off and go do 10 minutes before the 11:00 showing of What Not to Wear comes on. I may need to get the cable off soon and I will be sad. We have had a great bargain because of combination of cable and internet given by my friend who works at cable company but Comcast took over and they are raising everything, so I may not get my special much longer, may not get to keep cable, may have to go back to dial-up. :(

Thursday, March 20, 2008

A little more

because even though I have a lot of things I feel like I need to be doing I don't want to do them so I am implementing the 10 minute method tonight and right now I am in the part where I get to do something I want to do and what I want to do is make of list of things I need or want to do.

Cleaning: Closet in purple room
Vacuum my room
Clean off my dresser
Clean purple room really well
Finish garage and get all Renee's stuff out.

Liner for Michael's chalk bag- because even though I finally completed the chalk bag it turns out I didn't make it close tightly enough so he says his chalk falls out when he "hangs upside down." I told him my duty as a mother is to tell him the solution to the problem is that he should never hang upside down, but I guess to a rock climber that is not acceptable....SO my next possible solution is that I will make a liner from a lighter fabric (I actually have a bandanna to use) and make a closure with elastic that will be tighter so his chalk won't fall out.
Embroider Miko's apron (supposed to be a Christmas gift - oops!)
Make music frame for unnamed person
Sew blue pillow cases for my bed
Make Gillian's bowl (also supposed to be for Christmas, I started then gave up)
Frame Heather's Mermaid pictures (Christmas again!)
Mat and frame Gillian's forsythia drawing
Make unnamed person's apron (also Christmas)
Mail doll stuff to Amber
Make skirt purse (a purse from the fabric that is currently a skirt)
Embroider apron for Lu

It's a good thing there are some June birthdays!

That list does not include the stuff I want to make long-term projects like making the model train layout and finishing Emily's doll house she got for Christmas in about fourth grade!

And somehow I think I am going to get a new job and sell everything I own (or in my case, probably give it away) and move to New Mexico... I guess when the time comes I will truly decide what my priorities are. The model train is "N" scale so it is tiny! I guess if I have the sewing machine, the train and the knitting stuff I'll be all good, right? Oh and the embroidery, it doesn't take up much space...

Okay 10 more minutes...

Short post:

Maybe until later, but I have stuff I have to do first. I fell asleep in class tonight!

I started my final report on my project at work today at wrote about one and a half pages so far.

I started craving a bean burrito in class tonight (after I woke up!) so badly that I made one within about thirty seconds of walking in the door and I don't even like bean burritos! I have NO CLUE where that came from.

Happy tonight for crocuses poking up - not just the stems, but I saw one bunch with actual BUDS showing. Oh my God. I can hardly wait. I need spring and sunshine SO BADLY.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Hairy Night

Michael went to the big I say Peace Rally he says War Protest. He goes almost every Wednesday, but tonight was special because of the five year anniversary of the war. They had speakers, etc. I would have gone tonight if it hadn't been raining, but I am a fair weather peace monger in my old age. I went grocery shopping, fed Debbie's cats, came home and put groceries away and ate instead. Then I went and picked him up. Ironically, we watched "Hair" while he ate his dinner. It wasn't planned that way. It just so happened that I borrowed a bunch of movies from Heather over the weekend and it was one of them - of course it was at Hippie boy's request AND it is one of his favorites AND it was after I introduced him to it that he decided to grow his hair! He had started watching it earlier this week and only gotten about halfway so we watched the rest tonight. When that one woman sings the song that starts "How Can People Be so Cruel?" that can just make me bawl, but I made it through tear free tonight. I must be getting callous.

More things that made it a hairy night. I reached into the bag of Trader Joe's veggie and flaxseed chips and pulled one out and a hair came with it. When I reported it to Michael he said he had had a hair in his grilled cheese sandwich I made for him. Hmmm... things are suspicious around here.

I was absolutely bored today at work. I organized files. Tomorrow if it is so slow I am going to write the report on what is supposed to be the BIG PROJECT for legals. What the report will say is that there is basically no conclusion to the BIG PROJECT, but that I tried, I really tried.

I used some of my downtime at work today to make a list of projects I want to do or need to complete. It was amazingly long. Also it is almost time for a quarterly uberlist update. If y'all think I am list crazy you should go to Amber's blog and see what she needs to do just to get ready for this weekend! I don't know how she is going to sleep at all. I had my list on paper. I wish I would have remembered to bring it home so I could transfer it here.

First priorities are clean the closet in the purple room and get the room cleaned up before Hannah comes in April. If the closet is cleaned I can organize my craft and sewing stuff better. It will help me complete the rest of my projects more efficiently if I can get to my materials and supplies easily. I have decided I can't go to Heather's for Easter because I can't afford to drive up twice in one weekend so on Sunday my goal is the closet and a big pot of spaghetti sauce! Saturday is the Women Inspire Luna Music Fest so I will be volunteering for half the day. I am trying to not make too lofty/listy of goals for Saturday so I don't get too worn out, probably just trash to the dump and exercise.

Happy today for: Well, still really happy for Nikki's extra umbrella AND one of my coworkers at one of our other newspapers knewI had a grumpy morning yesterday and sent a bag of Hershey's miniatures by the courier for me! Isn't that about the nicest thing ever!? I am making sure to share them so I don't eat them all.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Things got better.

I medicated my headache appropriately. I have been encouraged by both my NP and my chiropractor to do so, but I still tend to have this tendency to think I should try to tough it out.

Nikki loaned me an umbrella so I didn't have to walk to class in the rain.

I did get some more work in this afternoon. I also got expressions of appreciation for the Clerk of the Court which made me feel good. ( I also dealt with a moron from the state government, but that just proves that there are morons everywhere!)

Class was good. The speaker was the Director of HR from Baxter, which is the pharma company where my main interest lies, because they have a branch in Albuquerque, which I still can't spell. He talked a lot about the company culture and philosophy and it sounds so positive and uplifting, despite their current legal troubles with Mr. & Mrs. Quaid and the Heparin labeling problem. I figured nobody from Baxter would even be allowed to say the word Heparin in public, but it was quite the opposite.

This is current class description:

Organizational Development in the Life Sciences Industry

How do you improve an already successful organization’s effectiveness? Organizational development is the study of an organization’s structure and culture in order to maintain a competitive advantage in an ever-changing business environment. Learn about leadership styles, as well as management strategies for motivating employees, improving quality, valuing diversity, resolving conflict, and managing change. Guest speakers from local life sciences employers will discuss their organization’s unique culture and development. Master the skills to advance in this growing field.

It should help me know exactly where to apply and stuff when I am ready. I am still nervous about career changing and having confidence to apply and interview. I even feel nervous about clothes to wear and things like that because I don't wear skirts anymore. I was really stressing about that the other night and then I realized, heck, if Hillary Clinton can run for president in pantsuits, surely I can apply for jobs!

And I did find something today to truly be happy for. After class while I was walking back to the car I realized on campus they put in a bunch of giant pansies in some of the beds! So even though they may still get snowed on, because heck, this IS Indiana, it was sure beautiful and cheerful and a nice way to end my rainy evening... seeing lovely, blooming flowers after my nice class.

Bye, bye, Eeyore! Welcome back, Tigger!

Grumpy Gus

I am definitely on the Eeyore side of my personality today. I was not planning on coming home for lunch because I took Michael to the dentist this morning, but that paperwork I had to track down last night I didn't find, and I just now found it in literally 10 seconds. Probably good to get me away from the desk for a few minutes anyway. I haven't been saying a word at work because I will either whine or grump. I hope a bunch of new stuff comes in because I am almost left with nothing to do and it will be a bad afternoon if I have nothing.
My head hurts, it is raining and I can't find my umbrella and the hard drive just started buzzing loudly like it will explode soon.

Well, gotta go back to work and probably be mean to Nikki.

Happy for: ummmm....the internet to gripe to?

Monday, March 17, 2008

Luck of the Irish to ya'!

I wore my green shirt to work today!

I worked hard!

I ran errands on lunch!

I worked hard some more!

I came home!

I cooked dinner! We ate dinner! It was good! Little chopped steaks, fried potatoes, cabbage, carrots and onions cooked with a little red wine vinegar, salt, pepper, and the tiniest amount of sugar!

I took Michael to Bike Project!

I went to the Y!

I walked one mile!

I rode the recumbent bike 22 minutes!

I walked one more lap!

I went to get Michael!

We stopped to get gas!

We stopped and fed Debbie's cats!

We came home!

We had a snack!

Now I'm blogging!

I'm watching Jon & Kate + Eight!

I'm going to wash dishes!

I'm going to take a shower!

I'm going to track down some paperwork!

I'm going to go to bed!

My class is tomorrow!

Michael is going climbing tomorrow so he won't miss me!

Happy today for: Exclamation Points!

Good night!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

I did take a nap

but I did some stuff too. I watched "The Holiday." I realized I really like Kate Winslet. I read some more of my book. I washed some dishes. Now I have to find a place to keep the wine glasses. I have done some laundry and dealt with a couple of clutter spots. No big projects, but little things that I will feel good about.

I need to remember that resting when I need it is part of what I am trying to learn about caring for myself and maybe this weekend is just one of those weekends. It just kind of scares me because with class starting I lose two nights a week and it really seems like a lot when it is happening. I need to keep having positive thoughts about the investment in my future and how Michael will just have to take up the slack and wash his own stupid dishes. He knows he gets away with little in the dish department and he will help if called upon.

Happy today for: those bagged, prepared baby carrots. It sure makes eating vegetables a lot easier on a lazy day. (Is that better than talking about roadkill?) :)

Maybe I am just lazy

but it kind of scares me how much I feel like doing NOTHING today. I did an awful lot of nothing yesterday.

Today I really need to clean house, go to Target and get medicine, exercise, and y'all know I could break that down into a list of about twenty things. All I feel like doing is lying in my bed in my room with the heater on and reading and watching movies. Even that seems like effort. Sleeping really sounds best.

I am worried that I am getting sick and I really can't. My classes start again this Tuesday. One more class, just one more and I will have a certificate in Management in the Life Sciences Industry. Then I can start looking for a job and double my salary right?

I was supposed to buy a Powerball ticket this weekend and I forgot. Maybe nobody won it and I can get one this week. Well, if Judy bought hers and wins it and shares with me let's just keep our little secret that I forgot my end of the deal, okay?

I think I will drink a lot of water and maybe some tomato juice. I think good drinks of water are solutions to lots of physical maladies. So maybe that will perk me up. Also I had a lot of caffeine yesterday when I haven't had a lot at all lately - no wait, it was Friday - I don't know, maybe that combined with all the driving is getting to me. Maybe I need a good dose of protein too. I had a pretty carbalicious breakfast. I should make some chicken for lunch, I guess.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

And now for something completely different!

I had a restful day. I slept VERY late while Heather went to work, then took my time getting ready, read a lot of a new novel, "Expensive People" by Joyce Carol Oates, took myself out to lunch, shopped at Dollar Tree and bought NOTHING. Went to Trader Joe's and bought organic, whole food for hippie boy and myself. Then I met Heather as she got off work and we went to her music fraternity's fund-raising recital. It was a cellist/harpist combo, a flautist, then a guy who played the Bayan - -kind of a balkan accordian, which I imagined would be horrible and dreaded, but was actually good, although I admit to sleeping through most of his performance. Afterward I was mostly anti-social while Heather worked the reception, then she took me out to Don Pablo's for dinner where I ate too many chicken enchiladas, but thoroughly enjoyed them.

Tomorrow is catch up on house day, exercise day and I hope to rest and do some crafty stuff and reading too. Nikki wants to work out so maybe we will hit the Y together. Then all the guys will watch us and I can pretend they are looking at me. Remember my curse of beautiful friends? Yeah, Nikki is not only beautiful. She is also only twenty four years old. And she is probably the most beautiful of the beautiful, too. Sigh...

Heather and I went to Meijer last night and I bought WINE GLASSES. Everybody brings wine when they come to my house and always ends up drinking out of juice glasses and tumblers, I swear sippy cups are the closest thing I had to the right size. Well at Meijer they had some cheap wine glasses that usually sell for $6.00 for 4, but it was a bonus pack of 6, then all glassware was 25% off, so woo hoo. So they are super cheap wine glasses, but the real thing.... Do you know you can buy like twelve different kinds of wine glasses? There are special shapes for each kind of wine. Because I bought the cheap ones, they are not special, they are just called balloons, I think - so generic... Fine with me. I don't know anything about the wine and never drink it anyway! Every time I have tasted it I never like it and think, hmmm... if I am going to have extra carbs and calories, I want it to be chocolate!

Happy today for: My car turned over 160,000 miles on the way home. I LOVE seeing all those nines lined up and then watching it flip over to the new zeroes. It's just fun and cool. I hope this car lasts until 200,000. That will be a big day. When it gets close. We will go on a special drive and eat chocolate ice cream or something in celebration.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Are you surprised?

I am "bloggin" on real paper because I am at Heather's with no internet access. We're watching South Park and a frozen pizza is in the oven so it is a late night! I get to sleep in tomorrow while Heather goes to work.

Today's Happy is an indicator that surely I have been putting in WAY to much highway time. Today I am happy for.... cute roadkill. WHAT???? How can roadkill be cute? Well, for some reason I think it's king of amusing when a raccoon or opossum is dead by the road and it is on its back in that classic all-four-paws-up-in-the-air position. I know it sounds gross, but I am just too easily amused, I think. I don't like it when blood or guts are visible, or anything like that, just the little paws-up thing. And I NEVER like it when it is a puppy or a kitty, only the wildlife stuff. So yeah, maybe I am a sicko, but I get a little giggle when they end up like that.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Thursday is a special day

it's the day we get ready for Friday.

I have to pack a bag to be ready for tomorrow. I am going to drive Michael to his dad's and then stay at Heather's to attend a recital on Saturday. I usually don't get a lunch on Friday because I am so busy at work and we need to leave pretty darn quickly after I get off.

It was warm here today. I loved it. I wore sandals to work even though I am supposed to wear my goodformyfeetshoes alll the time. I just had to paint my toenails pretty and celebrate for one day. It will probably be too cold again by tomorrow so I won't be tempted again.

My return to work was more frustrating than usual. Usually a certain amount of my work gets done, but not the follow up paperwork and I am cool with that. This time, even that certain amount of work did not get done. The person who usually does it had the best of intentions so she had forwarded my emails to herself, printed some out, half completed some, sent some back, etc... so I had to spend extra time figuring out what was done and what wasn't,what had to be done right away, what had the earliest deadlines and really trying to be methodical and organized without getting too frustrated. It was a little stressful. I needed chocolate badly by about 3:00. Christie brought me a nice, portion-controlled chocolate pudding cup, which was better than the king-size Snickers bar I was tempted to get from the machine!

Michael had cello, then I took him out to eat, even though it is not frugal, because I was still feeling the burn from work. We went Japanese. He got the eel that comes in a cool treasure chest. I got the vegetable tempura - cheap and no tentacles, antenna or suction cups involved.

Happy today for: chocolate pudding. postcards, gel pens.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Drove to Lafayette and back again - took Emily back.

Went to lunch at Arni's and Dad came over and we sat and chatted for an hour or so. It was pleasant. After we took Emily home I kind of drove the long way out of town and went by my old high school and through the old neighborhood a little bit. We went over the overpass where I was in the very bad car accident and it made my heart race a little bit twenty-five years later! I've been over it many times before and today was the first time I really noticed a physical reaction. Maybe that is good. Maybe I am repressing less, which is good. It's something I am trying to learn as I try to write and to share my experiences for "Half-Wit." Haha! Would it be strange to say I'm happy today for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Michael is practicing his cello. TV is on a show I'm not liking tonight so I'm waiting impatiently for Supernanny. I hope Jojo is good tonight.

I need to work on cleaning up a little. It's back to work tomorrow. It will be good for my body to be back in the routine. I am better at drinking enough water and eating better while at work. I have been cooking good meals while at home because I have time, but eating too much and at strange times, which isn't good for medicine taking and all that kind of thing.

So I must sign off and get on with some other parts of life....

Happy today for: Well, I'm going to say in advance for the clean sheets I am going to put on my bed. I LOVE the first night in clean sheets. YAY. They always feel so smooth and smell so fresh and YUM.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Dinner was served:

Turkey breast
Mashed potatoes
Deviled eggs
Pumpkin bread
Apple cake
Cranberry sauce
Refreshing beverages

To Me, Emily, Michael, Nikki, Ben, Gillian, Scott.

A nice little dinner party. I sort of took all day and just prepared as I felt like it. Michael made the frosting for the cake, and mashed the potatoes and did the asparagus. Emily was excused from helping because she had a headache and we know I certainly understand that.

No deep philosophical thoughts today. I also finished reading "This Vast Being" which was quite philosophical and about grieving and prompted me to think a lot on grieving and on whether or not I believe the spirit lives on, but I have no conclusions on it.

Happy today for: Ellen DeGeneres. I wouldn't mind watching her show every day, I think. I loved her sitcom and even remember when it was first on and was called "These Friends of Mine." It is kind of ironic that basically she was cancelled for being gay and now she is so openly gay and her show is such a hit and it is so uplifting. Yay for her. Maybe America is really becoming more accepting. We can only hope. Toaster ovens all around.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Short post

then off to watch a vampire movie with Emily, that I am worried is too gory and will give me bad nightmares.

Happy today for Cadbury Creme Eggs. Once of the best cheats a diabetic can have. Yummy.

I'm doing a survey!

Because what the heck! I haven't done one in a while!

1. Give me a random lyric from the song you're listening to:?
Bark, bark , hooowwwlll, hooowlll, bark, yap, yip hoolwl.
2. Does your last ex have a job?
yes, amazingly, Too bad he couldn't do that when we were married.
Three? Three? Calling number three?
4. What were you doing before filling out this survey?
Singing to Emily.
5. Last awkward moment:
I can't think of one, but I am sure I have had one!
6. Name three things all of your friends know about you?
I like to cook. I spend money too easily. I am proud of my children.
7. How long have you been with your current bf/gf?
Does not apply.
8. What do you do when a telemarketer calls?
I don't answer unrecognized numbers.
9. Name someone you know whose name begins with an A:
My niece, Amber.
10. Would you cry if you found out you got a girl pregnant?
Depends on the girl.
11.Have you been pressured into doing anything lately?
Nope. I don't work that way.
12. Do you think the concept of phone sex is stupid?
Pretty much, Yeah!
13. How many kids do you want?
no more
14. Name something you wouldn't want to buy used:
15. What makes you happy at this moment?
thoughts of Spring
16. What color are your eyes?
Brown. I've been told the color of root beer.
17. Do you have your tonsils and wisdom teeth?
Yes and no.
18. What side do you sleep on the bed?
The whole thing!
19. Do you like your significant other to be aggressive or passive?
I don't know. It's been so long I'd have to figure that stuff out.
20. Would you rather go camping or to a five star hotel?
Camping if the weather is nice. Hotel if I need a rest from working.
21. When did you last cry?
Maybe that day at work a couple of weeks ago.
22. How many people are on your top?
I think this means on my space and I don't know.
23. What's your worst habit?
Large portions.
25. If you don't mind saying, how many people do you like?
I like lots of people. I have a secret crush on a man at work, who is the kindest man, but must smoke two packs a day and smells like an ashtray.
26. If you could own a non-traditional pet what would it be?
A snake.
27. Are you okay with your ex being friends with your good friends?
No. But it would never happen
28. Would you rather feel pain or be numb?
Numb becomes too scary... I'd rather have the pain.
29. Do you find it easier to forgive or forget?
I don't know on this one - sometimes I think you can't forget because you have to protect yourself.
Well the look and stuff, I don't mind, but if "cutting" and stuff is really part of it, it concerns me.
31. Have you ever taken anyone/anything for granted?
I'm sure I have
32. Do you hate being alone?
Nope, not at all.
33. Has anyone ever broken your heart?
34. Is there anybody you would consider dating right now?
35. How late did you stay up last night?
Just after midnight.
36. What was the first thing you thought this morning?
Crap, a headache.
37. Is the person you have a crush on older or younger than you?
38. What did you do last night?
Made soup, watched "Little Miss Sunshine."
39. What are you going to do this weekend?
Going to a recital for Heather's music fraternity.
40. Do you own a stereo that costs more than $100?
41. Has someone of the opposite sex ever told you they loved you, and meant it?
42. How's your heart lately?
Full of triglycerides.
43. What were you doing this morning at 7AM?
Still sleeping
44. What were you doing this afternoon at 12pm?
hasn't happened yet!
45. What does the last text in your inbox say?
heck, I dunno
47. Do you know someone with the initials M.P.?
Yes, Mallory Pedro
48. Have you ever talked to someone when they were high?
49. How many red lights have you ran?
Not very many. I don't like to do that.
50. Have you ever cried while taking a shower?
Only while sick, I think.
51. What was your favorite grade?
Maybe senior year.
52. What were you doing at 12AM last night?
In bed, watching "Designed to Sell" but fell asleep before seeing the end result.
53. What's a sure way to catch your attention?
Sing well in a bluesy voice.
54. Have you ever, in any way, been betrayed by someone you trusted?
55. Are you happy with life at this moment?

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Slow day.

I've been cleaning, reading, baking. I made pumpkin bread and some muffins because I only have one good loaf pan. They are yummy. The batter seemed a little too heavy so I added in a little applesauce and yum. I also soaked the raisins so they would be really moist and yum, but they all sank to the bottom....I used white flour because I'm out of whole wheat, and I would like them better with whole wheat.

Michael is feeling better today so he is over at Alexander's doing geeky things. They like to watch "Yes, Prime Minister" and argue about math and physics problems... whoopeee. Emily is lying in bed watching "Beauty and the Geek" episodes. Aren't we just the most exciting crew ever?

I've been thinking about convenience food. It is kind of funny. My mom and Dad both know how to cook, I mean REALLY REALLY cook. My dad ran a restaurant for years and was at one time president of the national restaurant association. Yet we often had convenience food at home, like canned spaghetti, boxed pizza mix, Kraft chicken and noodle dinner, TV dinner. Yet my mom and dad could make anything from scratch - I mean soups, stews, casseroles, cakes, noodles from scratch even. I think it was because that stuff was invented during their lifetimes and they were kind of fascinated with it. So I grew up with a strange mixture of wonderful homemade food and convenience food at the same time. I love them both!

I can make almost anything from scratch (except you won't catch me making homemade noodles - that's what those Mrs. Reames frozen noodles are for), but I LIKE actual boxed and canned foods, too. I like Spaghetti O's . I like packaged noodle dinners, I like Banquet frozen dinners.... because I grew up on those just as much as the "real" stuff. Also my parents worked ALL the time - hazard of the restaurant business - and Chris and I could just cook all that stuff for ourselves all the time. Of course we also baked cookies and cakes and stuff because if we wanted them we just had to do it ourselves.

So it's interesting today I made instant potatoes and a noodle mix for lunch, but baked from scratch pumpkin bread and plan homemade soup for dinner. And that it what a typical day might be around here might be... some great, nutritious, whole-grain amazing homemade food for one meal and some frozen, high sodium, horrible for you food the next. I think it drives Michael crazy. He would prefer everything organic and whole and locally grown, of course. He puts up with my idiosyncrasies because I am the provider and cook most of the time and he is the kid and lazy. I do try to take his desire into consideration because I respect him and his principles and I know he is right, but it really is hard to change a lifetime of habits and learning and taste.

Happy today for:
Hand mixer. Making the making of pumpkin bread much easier. remember the days of making cakes and the "beat 300 times" instructions?

Saturday, March 8, 2008

I'm a lawbreaker,

living dangerously on the edge. I got a ticket for not having my seatbelt properly fastened because I had it behind my head. I am so short it cuts right across my neck and hurts all the time. When I said that to the cop he said, "Uh, you have to go buy one of those furry things..." Emily was about to laugh her head off.

Mostly the trip turned out to be pleasant the roads were dry, it was sunny, no more snow, traffic light , everything okay. Radio good music. I got there quickly, grabbed Em, we ate some lunch turned around came home, got a ticket, stopped to get a Shamrock shake for Em, got home quickly and made it all within five hours.

I took a bag of trash to the dump , made a quick store run and grabbed a pizza and we started watching Pirates of the Caribbean III - I fell asleep about halfway in and just woke up a few minutes ago! Time to take my medicine, drink some water and go read some more of "The Mermaid Chair" until I fall asleep again. Going to sleep a lot more tonight and then spend tomorrow being mellow and hangin' with the crew catching up a little on the house stuff.

Happy today for something that didn't quite happen, but almost but it reminded me that I want to tell you about how easily amused I am and how happy it CAN make me. I LOVE when we drive by the airport... 465 goes right under the path of a couple of runways and I LOVE when a plane comes in and we go right underneath it. It gives me some kind of inner thrill. Maybe it's because I am afraid of plane crashes and it makes me feel like I am living on the edge or maybe it's because I am a little fascinated with flight or maybe it's just because I'm a total geek! But today the plane that came in was about thirty seconds too fast for us, but it was fun to try to make it.

Emily quote of the day. "Why in the hell would there be a God, anyway?"

Bad Mother, I am

I should be on my way to go fetch Emily and I haven't even gotten dressed yet. Michael is too sick to come with me. I haven't gotten the purple room clean for Emily. I am bleeding yuckliy and my head hurts, not badly, but annoying. Also it is snowy and cold.

Ugh ugh ugh.

My goal will be to be dressed and ready by eleven. I should get there by 1:00 or a little after. Forget going to help Mom and Dad at the house. I feel too yucky. We will get some lunch, then turn around and come back and I will hide in my house the rest of the day and clean it up. That's it.

I will cook hot soup, bake beer bread in my newly cleaned oven and be warm and happy. Right?

Friday, March 7, 2008

Last Night

I meant to watch one episode of "The Good Life," then do some housework - fell asleep with both of my lights on, two candles burning, TV on.... and slept until 6:00 this morning. I guess I was a little tired.

I worked so hard at work today. Everything is all caught up and now I have FIVE days off in a row! YAY! We go get Emily tomorrow. I want to go to Mom and Dad's and help out around the house a little bit and visit a little bit.

I don't feel like writing. The point of doing Blog 365 is to write when I don't feel like it, so I can learn to write when I don't feel like it so I can pound out the books. I don't feel like writing when I don't feel like it tonight. haha!

Happy today for: a Quarter Pounder with cheese.

Thursday, March 6, 2008


Amber wrote a long blog on housecleaning with children to which I would really like to respond, but I don't feel like writing a lot tonight. This is kind of a duty blog for 365.

My tummy has been a little yucky today and maybe that is why I feel like lying in bed in front of my heater. Gill, Nikki and I went to lunch today at the culinary training part of the high school career center. It was Irish themed food today and I had lamb stew, which I love. It was however, very fatty.... I think it upset my tummy. I eat quite a bit of red meat, but I try to buy lean and cook lean, which is maybe evidenced by my cholesterol of 120.... this stew had LOTS of meat (and no potatoes! Ireland? no potatoes? Ummm teacher?) kind of floating in grease. Anyway, the whole point is my tummy is squishy. Also I have been out of tomato juice for several days and even though I have been eating fresh tomatoes and the diuretic I take is supposed to not be potassium depleting... I am having foot cramps tonight. I just ate a can of tomatoes heated up.... Also I am freezing cold and miserable feeling so I want to be in front of my heater. Bitch, bitch, bitch... huh.

But here are some happies:
Listened to music today at work and searched you tube and found Blood Sweat and Tears... Hi De Ho -- Oh my one of my favorite 45s to listen to as a child... I could belt that out as a seven or eight year old!
and listened to my favorite Blind Melon Song , my favorite song EVER maybe and it is because Jennifer once said this to me about the video, "I think we all have a little of the bee girl in us." I know it is true and I love dancing in the meadow with all my bee friends and I love all my bee friends. Thank you, Jenn.

Now I am going to go spend a little more time in bed and MAYBE I will get around to some dishes later because we ARE out of glasses, but MAYBE not. Depends on mood, tummy and feet. Maybe I just need to sleep.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008


I have too many.

But ain't it great? Deanna gave me a bunch of really expensive yarn for Christmas, but gave me the receipt so I could exchange if I wanted. I took it back and got a gift card. I had spent a little of it previously on some cake decorating tools. Tonight I found COOL STUFF for my model train. I thought I would just paint the board brown, but they have special stuff you stretch over it called "spring grass." Ooooh... it makes me want to play with my train SO badly. I also bought a magnetic snap for the really cool purse I am going to make. I know it's not yarn, Dea, but I know what you really want is for me to get things that make me happy and believe me these things will all lend to hours of frustration and moments of sheer bliss. (hours as the projects are figured out - moments as they are completed and YEARS of good memories!) And I Still have EVEN MORE I can spend sometime later. Who knows what will come next? Maybe YARN? :)

Nikki and I went to the Y and worked out together tonight. She was good and made me stretch, which Michael is always nagging me about. We walked a couple of laps, rode bikes twenty minutes, did some machines, some crunches, walked a couple more laps, stretched again. Good for me to mix it up a little as I have only walked since I have been back at it since the illnesses and I know it is best to not do the same thing all the time, which is why I try to do the bikes and swim and stuff too. My guts will probably be really sore tomorrow I haven't done crunches in FOREVER.

I must go read more. The Taliban just took over.

Happy today for: Spring grass for my train set. A bike rack for my car for fetching hippie boy easily. Gillian found it for $5 at a garage sale a couple of years ago and it has become a VITAL part of our lives. YAY GILL!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Much better day today.

I felt much better. I awakened a couple of times in the night with the headache, but not the terrible one, just an annoying one. It was gone when I got up in the morning.

I got a truckload of work done today AND got my filing caught up and my desk cleaned off to the point of actually washing it, dusting, and things like that. It felt so great.

When I came home Michael swept the floor, I cooked dinner and did some of the dishes. Now he is climbing. I went to Aldi and did a shop and I returned the "Lost" videos I had borrowed while sick.

Now I MUST go read "A Thousand Splendid Suns." OH MY GOD. What a SPLENDID book. I started it on my lunch hour and was praying for my IBS to act up so I could call in sick for the rest of the day and stay home and read! Unfortunately, I stayed healthy, damnit! I will have to take a couple of reading breaks to do a few more dishes. It was all I could do to force myself to put the groceries (well, most of them anyway) away and come in here to blog!

Happy today for: a GREAT book to read.
the sight of all the newly fallen limestone along the roadcuts from the frost wedging. Soon it will be time to go get new rocks to use in my garden. YAY for free rocks.

Monday, March 3, 2008


Went to work. Worked. Came home for lunch, took narcotics. Went back to work. Worked. Came home. Michael cooked dinner. Ate in bed. Slept. Woke up. Changed for bed. Took night-time meds. Came in here, signed in. Blogging. Going to take more narcotics and watch TV until sleep...

Happy today for: NARCOTICS! 16 yr old hippie boy who cooks.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Weekend update

Let's see what really happened:

Wash linens in purple room and make bed.
Halfway - as long as it gets completed by next weekend we're okay. That's when Emily comes and I like it to be nice when she arrives.

Clean off computer desk. About halfway here, too.

File tax papers. Done

Clean kitchen:
Finish cleaning oven (yes, it has taken me THIS long! Remember housekeeping has become optional) Done

Dishes Done

Find a box for the old dishes (I got some new dishes at Opportunity House for $10, but want to keep the old ones to have enough for parties) Not done

Clean off the table all the way. About halfway

Sweep the kitchen floor. Not done

Clean the coffee maker and smack Michael upside the head for using it and never cleaning it.
Half done - the cleaning part -wait a minute - okay fully complete. I had to wait for him to finish brushing his teeth.

Change the trash bag. Done

Either put away the sewing machine or start sewing something! Not done

Take a load to the dump. Done

Exercise by either walking the quilt show, the dog walk or both. Dog walk

Pick up Michael from Ed's Done (thus the head smacking completion possible)

Attend the concert at IU tomorrow (a vocal jazz set mezzo soprano Billie Holiday tunes whoopee!) Yay Bloomington! Not done - I had concert time incorrect I thought it was 2:00 and it was 8:00. not possible with the picking up Michael schedule. I actually showered, got dressed, drove to campus, parked, walked two blocks to concert hall, THEN discovered an empty hall and and my error.

Sweep the hallway Not done

Figure out why the car smells bad and fix it. Well it kind of stopped smelling - maybe whatever it was putrified beyond the point of stinkiness?

Finish cleaning around the chair in my room. I will do this tonight.

Some form of walking or other exercise tomorrow also. I think I am counting the walk to the concert hall and back!

Maybe get to Opportunity House, but I might feel a little too poor even for thrift shopping this weekend. Salvation Army instead where I purchased a paperback Joyce Carol Oates novel and and hardback copy of Sue Miller's "The Good Mother" or is it " A Good Mother" whichever, it is a good book.

I also finished reading " A Wedding in December"
I also attended the Ultimate Fighting Championship Party. I would pick a fighter I wanted to win based on how pretty he was, how cool his tattoos were, how nice his t-shirts were designed and root for him that way. The fights were not as gruesome as I pictured. I wanted them to be more tae kwon do-ish - like Angel and Spike ass-kicking vampires and demons, instead it was only a little tae kwon do, some muy thai, some jujitsu and some regular wrestling holds and stuff.... a lot of elbowing and knees..... I wanted leaping back spin kicks and it was "I'm gonna grind your ear into the mat and hurt your cauliflower ear and squeeze your neck for thirty seconds...." Not worth fifty bucks of pay-per-view in my books!

Plus I came home with my hair smelling like smoke even though nobody really smoked in the house, so now I feel like I need to wash my sheets too. But it was really nice to be invited and have a friend who wanted me to come to her house and hang out. I really appreciated it!

I felt like talking today so while I was on my way up to Indy I realized Heather would be out of church and probably still on the south side so I called her and she met me and drove the rest of the way to Greenfield to get Michael with me. He hadn't eaten so we stopped at a little diner and had little food. the nice waited let me order off the kiddie menu so I could have a diabetic portion and it was perfect! I wish other places would let you do that!

Happy today for: a safe journey. A nice waiter. Vinyl gloves to wear while cleaning the oven.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Miracles happen

I spent an hour this afternoon walking a seventy-five pound English Pit bull around the park. I said if anybody who knows me drives by this street and realizes this is me there is going to be a car crash! Porter is actually a very nice dog. When a child approached and wanted to pet the dogs, she started with the cute little one who wanted to jump all over her, and I said, "this big, scary-looking one is actually the one you should pet." Porter sat and held completely still while the obnoxious little waif (it turned out) petted him AND never barked or anything when her mothers let her start throwing sticks at the dogs - ahem for parents not thinking about their children's behavior around strange, seventy-five pound pitbulls, even though they have been said to be nice and are on tightly held choke chains!

Never made it to the quilt show, the dog walk trumped it. The dishes are done, one load of laundry complete, two in process, a book shopping at Salvation Army store complete, dump run done, lots of decluttering and putting away complete... and now second strange thing....

I deplore violence and even movie violence when I know it is fake, have to close my eyes. I am going to my friend Stephanie's house to a party to watch "Ultimate Fighting" It's her husband's party, but she REALLY wants me to come, so much that she came over today and invited me a second time in person to reinforce the invite. So I am going to gather together Stephanie's booze that has been in my fridge since LABOR DAY and take it back over to her house for her party and attend a sports event totally focused on violence... at least for a little while. I probably won't really watch, but will at least a little to see what it is.

Happy today for: A $60.00 rebate check in the mail that makes me feel better for the week, financially! A nice pitbull to walk me in the park. That the cellphone I found in the park is the same brand as mine so I can charge it up and maybe find its owner.

Weekend list:

Wash linens in purple room and make bed.
Clean off computer desk.
File tax papers.
Clean kitchen:
Finish cleaning oven (yes, it has taken me THIS long! Remember housekeeping has become optional)
Find a box for the old dishes (I got some new dishes at Opportunity House for $10, but want to keep the old ones to have enough for parties)
Clean off the table all the way.
Sweep the kitchen floor.
Clean the coffee maker and smack Michael upside the head for using it and never cleaning it.
Change the trash bag.
Either put away the sewing machine or start sewing something!
Take a load to the dump.
Exercise by either walking the quilt show, the dog walk or both.
Pick up Michael from Ed's
Attend the concert at IU tomorrow (a vocal jazz set mezzo soprano Billie Holiday tunes whoopee!) Yay Bloomington!
Sweep the hallway
Figure out why the car smells bad and fix it.
Finish cleaning around the chair in my room.
Some form of walking or other exercise tomorrow also.
Maybe get to Opportunity House, but I might feel a little too poor even for thrift shopping this weekend.

Very ambitious, we'll see what happens... laundry is already started, dishes already started, we know the oven has been "soaking" for a week! It will either be very easy or very hard to finish. I could hardly sleep last night thinking about what I want to sew, but even though I swear housekeeping has become optional I still have the nagging feeling inside that at least the dishes must be washed first, darn it. It is too hard to prepare meals with too many dirty dishes, too tempting to eat out and thus too expensive....

I will return and report as usual.

And I am editing to add:

I also want to read a whole bunch of "Wedding in December"
Listen and sing a long to a lot of good music.
Probably play some computer Scrabble.
Update my

Because I may be a little boring and drudgistic, but I do have other interests besides laundry and trips to the dump, honest. I also have a short one-act play in my head, that may start to come out this weekend!