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Monday, July 3rd, 2017 01:26 pm
In good news, the investment we made in having the crawl space "conditioned" seems to be saving energy -- and we keep the place cooler.

Last year we had the thermostat set at 74°F when we arrived, and well before the end of June we increased it 76°F. (We were in shock: i know plenty of folks keep the temp warmer.) This year, since we were told that with the encapsulation we should keep the place at 74°F, i decided we would keep it at that temperature -- on average. Overnight we cool to 72°F, then over the morning we keep the place at 74°F or cooler. It takes a while for the outside to warm up the inside that 2°. Then at noon we let it go up to 76°. The air does run in the afternoon. When the sun gets low behind the pines, we start cooling back down to 74°F.

Looking at spring and fall months, i think i have a good idea of our "no HVAC needed" power load. June 2016 had 8 kwh/d for HVAC, while this June had 5 kwh/d for HVAC. This past June was cooler than 2016 (good, everyone said last year was abnormal). I dug up the number of "cooling degree days" from WeatherUnderground: June 2016 had 1.13 times the cooling degree days than June 2017 but used 1.6 times the power.

So, if i want to get the average amount of power per cooling day (instead of month day), i could calculate

(X kwh/d * Y d)/ Z CDD

to get the kilowatt-hours per cooling degree day. June 2016 is then 14 kwh/CDD and this June is 10 kwh/CDD. That seems a good improvement. 30%-ish?
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elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
Wednesday, January 27th, 2016 06:22 am
Email to my sister after a phone conversation about Emotional Labor:

I do have a "Ha!" moment reading this, when it's alleged that it's just men who don't know what emotional labor is. For Mom's generation, it was just what being a woman was about. Christine's been reading David Foster Wallace and shared his This is water essay with me (See
http://faculty.winthrop.edu/martinme/Thisiswater.htm; there's a nice book form.)

There are these two young fish swimming along and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says "Morning, boys. How's the water?" And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes "What the hell is water?"

Emotional labor is the water of a woman's life in patriarchal culture. Now that we can name it, we can see ourselves swimming in it.

Very nth wave feminism. I think about the advice i got from the women with tenure in the physics department at Penn and smile. What is the quotation? The tide of justice is inevitable? Hmm, the internet is not helping me this morning.

https://freethoughtblogs.com/brutereason/2015/07/27/emotional-labor-what-it-is-and-how-to-do-it/


There is one thing in the discussion that i wonder about, and that is house cleaning. It comes up in the sharing of chores and in the resentment expressed in the emotional labor discussions. However, part of a clean house is that has been how a woman has been judged for ages. My last twenty years or so i've wrestled with finding the line of where cleanliness is a true desire and where it is a social imposition. I suspect many women have been as acculturated by their mothers as we were for a cleanliness standard derived from ancestors who were servants in great homes (Mom's grandparents), the military (Granddad), or folks who had their own servants (Dad's grandparents). When is cleanliness a sort of conspicuous consumption (Downton Abbey and i have the means to keep this giant house clean) and when it a health and comfort thing (asthma, dust: hmmm)? It's hard to go against the conditioning: it's rebellion against something that has represented a valuation for ages. But is it all this cleanliness a luxury? How much is an engine of consumption (witness soap operas)? Women in the US are sold over and over cleaner and more sparkly and more lemony: how much polish is necessary to protect an investment, how much is pride?

I don't know that i've found the line.
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Saturday, July 25th, 2015 12:25 pm
Theodore Haviland China I spent half the day looking at the full set of china and figuring out how i might package it up. Much of it was trying to figure out how to maximally use certain widths of fabric at Spoonflower, with the idea of making linens to go with the china. In hunting down appropriate linen sizes, i discovered Bright Settings. Their linens would be a whole lot less expensive than custom designed and they will ship 25 samples. So, i'm getting 25 samples from them.

There are times as i'm doing this that i wonder if we should keep the china and use it to death. (It's just the question of storage.) Spending time looking at it has made me appreciate it, even though it is so not my style.

Maybe i could, should keep 6 settings and divest myself of 6?

I've just bid on a china teapot that should complement the set, whether i sell off the china or i keep it!

--==∞==--

I haven't been eating much since i came home -- in a good way. (I haven't been doing much that requires refueling, either.) It feels like a great deal of stress eating has gone by the wayside. If i can keep that up when i go back to work, it will be a win. I'm not craving sweets.
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Wednesday, December 24th, 2014 06:15 am
These grey short days feel so unusual. I am allowing myself more rest, more rest, and wonder if i will ever be rested. I remember some years ago when i allowed myself a winter season of saying "no," a season of not making decisions. That was such a valuable rest: i recall the clarity on the other side, how some decisions seemed obvious when before that season i was wrestling with them.

Yesterday wasn't grey, and i was back in in the office after a four day weekend. The southern exposure of our offices and the single paned glass make for a sauna experience and the blinds stay closed. It looks like we will have bright weather for the next few days. I have, however, volunteered to work Friday. There's a project in a tizzy, behind schedule, major kerfluffle, and there has already been an incident of calling people while they were on vacation for support. (My four day weekend was unmolested.) I think the project is doomed by fluffy thinking; yesterday's meeting was marked by me asking questions to which the answers seemed to be "um" and "huh."

Ah, but folks don't give up. So i'll work Friday instead of go on a road trip. I'll go on one soon.

--==∞==--

I've gotten out for walking the past few days - YAY. Please little baby habit, hang in there. And i'm trying to use the "conditions of enoughness" responsibly. Not over plan and fail to complete, as i have been. Last night, since we went out to eat with a friend, the COE was to walk while the delicates ran through the wash cycle. And Christine was right, if i had had to wait for the dryer cycle of another load, it wouldn't have happened.

Housework thoughts )

--==∞==--

When we saw my NC nephew at the beginning of the month, he was designing his own board game. Christine told him about dice beyond the six sided choice, and he was wowed. The obvious choice then was to get him dice for Yule, which led to a purchase of the introductory D&D set. I had bought the D&D books when they came out, but i had no one to play with as a teen. Christine did have friends. This year, as i muttered my teen angst, Christine said, "Hey, is this a hint you've been dropping all these years?" We've rolled up two characters for me and have started on the quest from the first edition of the game. I'm not playing the characters i would have played as a teen: i'm playing two very young dwarves for whom naive is not strong enough a term. Christine is rather amused.
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Friday, March 21st, 2014 06:58 pm
I worked at 80% yesterday and today. It has been weird, but i think it's also good. During meetings today i sorted out my junk drawers and pen drawers and so on. I've a box of stuff that will be free during the yard sale a month from now.

Speaking of stuff, would anyone be interested in a Livescribe pen? I've decided that i really won't use it since i have the digital tablet. It's very cool to play with, but i've only used it once or twice for the part that made it seem interesting, which was recording my voice as i drew a diagram in order to send the explanation to others. I think i like having multiple colors more than my recorded voice.

We've cleaned house for Christine's sister's arrival, and i am watching the flight on Flight Aware. It's so cool -- you can download the geo-coordinates and altitude of the flight minute by minute (roughly). Thus, when i take the photo out my window now, i can find the answer to, "WHAT IS THAT??"

We had some furniture drama as the casters i bought ($30) ripped large holes through the bottom of the hassock. I think we won't need the full planned surface area for Christine's sister, though, so a solution (plywood, i guess) can wait.
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Thursday, March 20th, 2014 06:18 am
Hi! I did not fall off a mountain, although driving through Saratoga traffic came to a halt. When i looked in my rear view mirror i saw the shocked face of the driver of a big pickup as she slammed on the brakes. Almost a week later and the moment is still at the top of my memory.

Monday we revisited the couch of cheap lumber. Christine had talked to a handyman to fix it just so we'd have a place for her sister. The handyman looked at it and also wrote it off. He too thought it looked like lumber used in pallets. Good thing he didn't fix it, as when i ripped off more of the cover in indignation, i found another major beam splitting. I've found the website where i bought it: "All of their products are constructed from plantation-grown imported hardwood to ensure sustainable use of timber." Ha ha. This is softwood, not hardwood. I wrote the manufacturer on Tuesday, the vendor today, and will move to posting a complaint on the seller's website.

We had a day at Ikea and bought a smaller and much more inexpensive couch. We picked up a new hassock cover, and i have a hassock in the office that i stack things on and in. I forgot to buy the shelving to replace the hassock, so i was back at Ikea after work yesterday. I discovered a taller version of the same shelving already assembled in the "as is" department. Cool! I spent all my free time yesterday getting all my clutter on the shelves, and then, as we watched some mysteries, sorted through papers and ruthlessly disposed of as much as i could. Despite the high barrier the new shelving makes at the edge of my desk (i've built my own cube!), the consolidation it makes of a number of storage options actually makes my work area feel more open.

Anyhow, dealing with the couch and couch replacement fall-out has basically been this week. More to come, with getting the old couch out for pick up and assembling the new couch.
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Friday, November 16th, 2012 07:42 am
Visit by colleagues is over. Nice to see them and work with them, frustrating to not have prepared agenda, frustrating to have so many other demands.

--==∞==--
This week at work )
--==∞==--

I am fortunately feeling better from The Cough, with some energy returning.

I really miss Christine: not only was i in the office on Wednesday, but ate out with colleagues on Wednesday, so i've hardly had a chance to see her since the weekend. (I'm up early, and am going to sleep at about the time she comes home from classes; she's getting up just as i am out the door in the morning.) She's worried about me -- health and my work distress -- without checking in together i think her worries ran away a bit.

I've left her one morning in the grips of migraine, another morning she was frustrated over the dead dishwasher.

Oh dead dishwasher, whose replacement part may not arrive before the 27th, you should be glad we don't "Do Thanksgiving." If we did, we would likely curse you for your poorly timed part failure.

Oh Consumer Reports -- You said this model was reliable!!

We've agreed to have Pizza Delivery for Thanksgiving: it is what we would have some of the years in Philly when Christine was in radio, doing night shifts. It's food that she loves, and not focusing on food allows focus on Thanks.

I can let my Inner Martha Stewart play other times.
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Sunday, October 28th, 2012 06:16 am
Good things about yesterday:

* Didn't cough much.
* Lovely visit with LHJ to get keys back.
* Laurie Anderson's Homeland.
* Laurie Anderson's Homeland mixed with most recent Devo.
* The Clash to chase away some blues.
* Almost all camping stuff is put up.
* A successful venture in dealing with a household infrastructure issue. (Toilet gurgles no more. Water is not wasted.)
* Listening to the Giants game and made progress on a nephew's Yule gift..
* December travel paperwork for work completed.
* Heart of romaine, green apple, dried blueberries, some coconut shreds, cheddar, and a touch of ranch dressing.

And i can still be moody. )

Kayak lessons with REI this morning as my worship. The legal forms for attending these lessons are remarkable. I wonder what it means that i will DEFEND REI. I'm not gonna give them money to fight a lawsuit my insurance company might bring to them, that's for sure.
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Tuesday, May 8th, 2012 06:44 am
The adventure of military standby flight and my parent's navigation skills -- iPhones surely have turn by turn navigation now, right? I do not understand.... -- had them at our door at 7:30 pm. Christine "talked them in" the last few miles.

I'd gotten quite overheated during the day, highs of 88 and oh how i miss our shade tree, so we were sitting out on the deck enjoying the cool evening air. In our dry summers, the temperature does fall off quite quickly. For Mom and Dad, it was too cool. Apparently, the carrier was not particularly insulated, and they were freezing. When we held hands around the dinner table their hands were icy, still, and my feet were still radiating the day's heat.

This morning i walked out in the dawn light to make tea, certain that they would be awake. Ah, not only awake, but gone at 5:40 am. And some of the dishes had been washed up, and the camping & sleeping gear we were loaning them was gone.

I hit speed dial for my mom, and got my sister. I'd forgotten speed dial goes to their land line. She filled me in on the news that Mom had been up since 3 (pacific time, i hope), that they'd slept well, and that they were on their way to Santa Cruz. I do hope they were comfortable: our life in small spaces never seems to really agree with them. Unfortunately, our current home has even less privacy for guests than previous places.

I checked in with my folks next, and they were at some McDonalds. "It was so beautiful, but dark," Mom said of the drive to Santa Cruz. Christine muttered something about needing to wait for sunrises.

Given that my Dad has postponed his cataract surgery, and Mom's glasses were left on our deck, i'm hoping everyone drives safely.

--==∞==--

Yesterday, after my reflective writing, i spent an intense work morning, and then began house cleaning. I'd taken the half day, and i figured even if they weren't here, i could stand the break. One issue to address was the microfiber slipcovers for the chairs we have. Edward, in particular, considers the chairs his, and lo, the cat hair. I vacuumed -- that pilled some of the cat hair, but more from the brush's effect than the vacuum. I used a lint roller, three or four sheets before i realized how futile it would be. Finally, i took them over to the laundry with those drier sheet things and ran them through with no heat. WOW! That was incredibly effective!

I read through much of the heat of the day, finishing Nancy Kress' suspense thriller Oaths and Miracles after my folks went to sleep. I did not find it quite as "terrifying" as the New York Times. I think the long reveal on the biotech threat didn't build up suspense for me. Engaging and rewarding though: the FBI agent is a doodler, and i loved the doodles.
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Monday, April 16th, 2012 06:15 am
Yesterday, after Meeting for Worship, i continued to the recycling station in Sunnyvale's baylands. I knew the Bay Trail went close by there and decided i would get in a walk in the full sun of midday. The walk was pleasant although the landscape surreal. The soundscape was filled with the splashing of the water treatment fountains, the hum of a radar facility, and the melodic calls of sparrows and redwing blackbirds. Pedestrians, cyclists, rangers, and water treatment workers all out on the roads between the ponds. Broken asphalt plowed into piles with sings noting to keep the bay clean and not litter. Waterfowl filled the ponds that signs indicated had hidden treacherous currents and were not safe for drinking or washing. Two Canadian geese paraded their four goslings in the water along side the trail. Black coots rushed away from the trail with their frantic take-off water-walking splashing the emerald green water up behind them, before giving up and sailing away from me.

Riding home a bit after one, i began listening to An Excellent Mystery (11 in Chronicles of Brother Cadfael). I didn't stop listening until the story was done in the evening. While my mind was preoccupied with the hot late autumn of Shrovesbury in during the Anarchy, my body lived out "clean all the things" with breaks for crochet, ice cream, and nachos. I rather think i slipped up in the meal department yesterday. Breakfast was a slice of cheese and my last three corn flour biscuits, lunch was nuts and fruit juice, dinner must have been the nachos, and then there was plenty of ice cream. No binging, thought, and while the ice cream was sweet i never felt the sugar rush. Vacuuming, some scrubbing, much laundry, sheets changed: all ready to welcome Christine home.

I found myself a little confused by the seasons after the mystery ended. It's not been hot and sweltering summer weather, has it? No, it's spring! But the sunny noon time walk took me by sere vegetation: herbicide, i'm sure, but the sense was of summer dry plants. That, plus the long narrative certainly transported me to another season. I left the office window open overnight and froze this morning!
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Monday, February 27th, 2012 07:53 am
Clarity!

Discernment is so hard: it requires the sorting out of fears and all the messages the world hands to you to actually find the real nugget of authentic response.

I found some clarity on Saturday. I'd spent the morning at the aging workshop, listening deeply, and, by noon feeling overwhelmed. I went home and began wrapping my Dad's birthday gift.

Dad's birthday gift is a mini cannon: his grandkids believe he is a retired pirate, and no one is dissuading them of that misconception. Not only are we giving him the cannon, but we are also including lego pirate minifigs (including a girl pirate for our niece, his granddaughter). We have a cake tin from a rum cake from Pirate's Alley that seemed like it would make the right container. I had some cheap gold tone chain for jewelry making that had been too cheap for any use, and i had a small luggage lock that is no longer TSA compatible (as well as fairly easy to pick). Wrapping chain around a round tin doesn't actually introduce any security, so i decided to punch holes in the tin and thread the chain through. The gift will be chained and locked, no key provided.

Christine asked, "How do you open it?"

I responded, "How would a pirate open it?"

Honestly, the chain is so cheap, it's easier to pull apart than some gift wrap and tape combinations i remember. Definitely easier to break than curling ribbon!

As i pulled out the dremmel to punch the holes in the tin, clarity hit me.

What i NEED is more time making and creating. Not more leadership and management responsibilities. I have already recognized that part of the problem with my current job is that i have so many folks to whom i delegate the creative problem solving. I need to be looking for a new role that gives me more opportunities to *create* and not manage.

Exhale.

I don't know how to get there, but at least i see the direction i want to go.

--==∞==--

Meanwhile, i checked email yesterday evening and found i needed to be in a meeting in less than twelve hours, a 5:30 am meeting. Today i have 23 hours notice before the Tuesday 5:30 am meeting. Also, it's better than the 2:30 am call i had Sunday morning to include me in troubleshooting the install.

Sunday I did significant household carpet cleaning including the second full cleaning of the vacuum's filters after the job was done. I think that should make regular floor maintenance possible again. We definitely lost the habit while we had the roomba, and then the vacuum cleaner failures after the roomba failures didn't help us get back into any habit. I hope that some standard maintenance behavior can return to our practice after this.

I hate carpets.
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Saturday, October 1st, 2011 06:23 am
Years ago i worked out a diagram of pulleys for hoisting the bikes off the surface of the deck. A month or so ago i just bought a pair of hoists. Once they arrived i really looked at the problem. Oh, blast. Is this really the solution? The hanging bikes aren't "up out of the way." They're big and the space under them isn't really available for anything. They *are* off the floor of the deck, so sweeping will be easier, but they will become bird perches.

Christine and i talked and she encouraged going forward.

I hung one last night -- that was my "do *something*" resolution in effect -- and i am pretty clear this is a bad idea. They are also not rigidly attached to the ceiling, so they can swing. And we do get blustry winter days. And those are big glass doors. It turns out i can return the unopened hoist *today* and get a refund (less return shipping). Cool! "Perfect" timing. Then i'm left with the bike hoist that didn't work -- http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000MJ11TI

Anyone in the Bay Area interested?
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Wednesday, November 10th, 2010 08:20 am
This morning isn't going the way i'd wish. Work related things caused some stress and tension that i'm having a hard time dismissing. Read more... )

Between the call and the web presentation, Christine and i talked about some health expenses and tax choices. This, too, caused some activation and stress. I have to admit my journaling post earlier wasn't satisfactory as i didn't have enough time to reflect, so the ideas chasing their tails in my mind had to get chased off before they were satisfied.

That "activation" sense is something i'm trying to pay attention to, in the sense that by labeling my state as "activated" i know to question my reactions. I wish i had questioned before raising the alarm this morning about a "mistake" that wasn't there.

--==∞==

We're planning for some major expenses. My mind is in a bit of a tizzy over making decisions with the annual benefits decision time right now and the tax implications of choices. medical expenses and taxes )
--==∞==--
Personal heath notes )
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Wednesday, October 20th, 2010 07:42 pm
So, i made arrangements to meet a guy who worked with another group in our office, was laid off in June, and wants me to be a reference. He's been looking for a while. While i can't really speak about his work directly, i can speak about the group he worked for and the type projects they do, and i can speak to that he wasn't let go because of a competency issue. But, since i didn't work on anything with him, i wanted to talk before i'd be comfortable as even the loosest reference.

We were going to meet at 3:45. I was running a little late. I called the number he had called me from. I sent him email when i got there letting him know i'd wait until 4:30. I didn't hear back until 8:48 pm that "I was tardy in showing up at Red Rock Cafe myself."

I just don't know. I do know i have absolutely no inclination to stretch for him at this point.

--==∞==--

Afterwards i planned to run some errands, because i thought i might be a bit wound up by the social interaction. One was at Bed Bath and Beyond, where i think i got an exposure to some perfume/scent product that gave me a headache (back in the bedding section). I was also over hungry. Christine and i spent some time picking out a mat to prevent slipping in the tub. This morning i see our choice of the bamboo "beads" is not meant for in the tub. Well, tough. We'll see how it disintegrates. I'm trying to avoid buying more plastics when i can. The other eco option was rubber. I know that the natural rubber would not be a petro-product, but i've no idea what happens as it disintegrates. Does rubber contribute to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, to the small particles? So, we're going with wood.

--==∞==--

Yesterday's investigation into vitamins will need to count as much of my 1.self goals and work. I've glanced at my list of goals in my mind map, cursed that some notes i made in my mind map seem to have gone awol with the disk sync issue, but noted that all in all i'm doing OK. This one goal, "* Use my morning energy to address each of the seven goal aspects, cycling in order, by either journaling or actually following through on desk tasks," seems to be working. Every morning i am doing a look ahead at *some* aspect of my life now, instead of whatever is most demanding. The weekly pacing felt more ... something ... impressive? But it wasn't balanced. I'm occasionally doing squats, and i have the bike on the trainer in a usable configuration again, given that walking with Christine in the evening is difficult in the dark *and* our evenings are getting busy.

--==∞==--

Argh, failure with sync to android. Saved the log. Working on trying to resolve problems these days -- and spent about a half hour on an alarm app yesterday. Hi, i'm your free QA service.

Grumble.
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Tuesday, August 17th, 2010 06:10 am
Last night, i managed to take on the laundry and a walk, but did not manage to do any prep for tonight's library committee meeting -- but i just wrapped that up.

I've written my sister and a colleague who has experimented with LinkedIn with me. If someone drops you on LinkedIn, it's apparen't "invisible" to you except your count goes down. So now i can accept invitations from coworkers with the comfort that if i really start fiddling with the LinkedIn profile, i could drop them before i do.

Christine is having an adventure. Apparently a check she sent in payment for the mandolin never reached the seller. She realizes the mysteriously high PG&E charge was the day after she sent the check and has figured out the check was intercepted and applied to some account at PG&E. Apparently PG&E and our bank are being very agreeable in straightening this out. It's still going to run up expenses: so far there's the $29 stop check fee and there will be the notary's fee. And of course, the time. The new mailboxes in the complex look like they'd be secure, but i suspect people can fish things out.

--==∞==--
Notes about 1.Self: Health is doing basically OK. But i have complaints )

Having semi-evidence that walking might be part of what's keeping depression at bay, i'm motivated to keep walking. So we had a long walk at Shoreline park (new and unfamiliar paths!) while i was on vacation, and a walk last night. It's not quite a discipline yet, and i'm clear it's a practice that is linked up with coming home from work and being with Christine. I worry about keeping up with walking while i'm in Dublin next week.

I worry about being in Dublin next week.

I just looked at a division of "self" areas i made some time back: physical health, internal health (mental,emotional, spiritual), environmental health (my stuff, the environment i keep myself in), joy, and reservoir of strength.

Which reminds me to order some notebooks from Levenger. I need to improve my note taking at work. I had quit keeping a "lab notebook" because of my failure to circulate notes taken longhand and how the notes fell into disorder. I can't type fast enough in digital systems to really keep up, and if i'm engaged in the meeting, it's worse. SO i've been scrawling on postits and hoping i might keep up.

I realized though that unlike five or more years ago, there is now a greater ease with which i could take a photo with my phone and then distribute that image of the page as the notes from a meeting. I might even invest in Evernote, which indexes handwriting in images.

Must dash.
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Saturday, July 31st, 2010 05:26 pm
Annoyance: the yoga video that Christine helped me rip from the VHS will not go on the Evo. All the conversions i try produce a video without sound. And the sound is the important part. Fiddlesticks. (I wave a magic wand over the annoyance and, abracadabra!, it disappears!) I'm passing the file to Christine, who will work media magic on it, again.

Another annoyance: we're done with with the organic delivery people. I eventually learned to cope with potential mold issues and so on, but the delivery person has gotten completely flaky over the past weeks. Didn't pick up the box when leaving the boxes; didn't come get the boxes when scheduled; didn't leave the last order at all. Done. (Another wave of the magic wand, and most of the annoyance is gone, but four big bins still wait in the living room. A sense of potential has appeared, though.) I will try to make myself go to some of the local Saturday markets. I suspect there will be more sensual pleasure in the process, even if it means more time spent. I suspect, too, i can find ways to meet up with folks.

More annoyances: my physical irritations. Health things ) And this is why i have to record these things: having a documentation trail keeps me from exaggerating. (A third wave of the wand, and all that appears is hope.) I've not been in this discomfort forever; i will likely feel better soon.
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Thursday, July 29th, 2010 06:24 am
I ordered a ball winder from Dharma at their sale price, just as they came back in stock. It will be here any day. Yay! I don't know if i can use it to wind thread on sticks but will experiment.

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/features/2010/1007.gravois.html is an interesting commentary on Google and international cartography.

-==∞==--

Re Christine and the three mandolins: she's selling her oboe at a specialty reed instrument shop, but her guitar is on Craig's List. Need a classical guitar with a pickup installed? She also picked up the Paper Jamz Drum kit #6 on Sunday. I keep trying to play but ....

Christine goes back to her Italian mandolin instructor on Friday, having replaced the "Americanized abomination" of a f-style flat backed mandolin with a over one hundred year old bowl-backed mandolin. (Yay Craig's list.) I think the mandolin is suiting her well, although i imagine there will be a hankering after a mandola or mandocello in the future. Also, http://www.sfmandolin.org/ .

-==∞==--

The new screens came on Monday. The cat door is very highly designed, with flap inside the flap of heavy black rubber. The inset flap is for the exit; that flap, plus the frame flat, is for the entrance. Little magnets hold the flaps in place. Since we have been sans screens for ages, allowing the cats to come and go on the deck, the nigh hermetic seal this super design produces seems overkill. We've binder clips propping the flaps back from the magnets so they flaps move with a little more ease.

Greycie Loo is coming and going. Edward might be: i'm not sure. Mr M doesn't like the flaps at all.

The important thing is that the screen on the side we never use as a door is replaced, so we can leave that glass door open and have a breeze all night. The arrival of the screens has, of course, coincided with a cooling trend.
elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
Saturday, June 19th, 2010 01:59 pm
So I splurged .and bought a day's pass of Delta wifi. I had plenty to do without it, but it's been good to read your journals. First, though, I splurged on tracking our progress across Nevada and Utah. With the map at a scale of 5 mo to a thumb width I had about the right scale to track, but I'd have to zoom in to pick out features and then we were moving a little to fast for me to keep up. Still it was petty neat to identify desert intersections and salt flats. our pilot was no guide.
This leg our pilot let us know as

ETA: we flew over Indianapolis ap I could wave at peaceofpie.

I am worried about burning pit like I did over Thanksgiving, but I don't think I'll have the same major trigger. My folks seem more at peace except for my mom nagging my dad about a retirement party. He's retiring as theowner of the company finally acceptance that the deep trench around the company is indeed evidence that he"s. driven the company into the ground. I'm pissed because my dad was a partner for a while but wasn"t listened to.Dad have back his shares because he didn'twant to ne left with the liabilities the owner was taking on. And, as a services company, the owner was essentially selling my Dads expwrtise.

I understand why dad doesn't want a retirement party. My brother gets it. Mom, not so much. Still they sound like they are much more easy with each other.

I'm looking forward to seeing them and some friends over this visit - I just wish I could trust that I have the resources for all that and the conference.

--==#==--

Christine was pretty upset after leaving Edward at thevet yesterday. Not only are there the "escape" wounds in his rump, but they'd become abscessed and Edward had a fever. She feels we need to keep him in for his own safely. There are logistical challenges with that.

I need to find a handy person who cam build us some good sliding doors for the deck. I'm imagining regular screen from the waist up, but something of heavier gauge (and bigger holes) at cat level. Ideally a car door of sorts, something we could hook up to some tunnel. see kittywalks.com. A cat gazebo would be neat too. if a handy man helped us with that,too, I could imagine something with mounted window boxes.

I might be able to do it myself. But the screen does are project I'd like some on professional time. Not my glacial project time.

Also, quite new deck blinds broke under their own weight in yesterday's gust winds. CURSES.
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elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010 06:27 am
Our shelf ad is up at http://sfbay.craigslist.org/pen/fuo/1770891974.html

The carpets will be cleaned probably in moments, and then we will haul stuff back into the apartment. I awoke thinking of how much opportunity for decluttering there is, and i need to try and shape my understanding so that i can be at peace and at ease, yet still be motivated to do a manageable amount of my own decluttering, and gently and compassionately coach Christine into decluttering.

It is, of course, her clutter and my hobbies. She hasn't used her X in over a year, thus it's clutter, but my Y is just waiting for a chance for me to get to it. I can recognize the bias in that framing, and become uncertain how accurate i am in my framing. In truth, is not the china cabinet my clutter?

I reflect on how, when growing up, it was obvious to me there was Mom's stuff: multiple sets of dishes, decoration and mementos, shelves of books. Mom did, on the whole, have things arranged as if the Souther Living photographer was arriving in moments. (I didn't keep it dusted to that standard, despite it being one of my chores.) But she never saw that stuff as her stuff, although as a child, it was clear to me that none of the rest of us participated in making the decisions for that stuff. She was the family: everyone else had individual things.

When Christine and i moved in together, i knew we had to blend, negotiate, and share decisions. I think we have with minimal resentment, and that is the structure that is most important to me. I recognize how well i learned bullying from my mom, a bullying that for the first decade of our married life i had to unlearn. And Christine's mother had a sort of passivity, i think, as i listen to Christine and her sister sift through their family life. Christine and i could have built a very different relationship: we had the tools at hand.

So maybe when we load all of our things back into the apartment, i can drop the sense of guilty extravagance ("For shame, look at all of this that we've bought and barely use"), the guilty sense of poor house and health management ("Look at these piles of dust catchers, can't you get this filed and dealt with?"), and recognize the love with which Christine has set days this week aside to make sure the carpet is cleaned for my health (dust mites) and my aesthetic awareness of the cat stains and the high traffic areas. I can recognize that we did set out with a plan and followed through, and recognize the successful parts of that plan -- staging it out over enough time that we kept from triggering our overwhelm shutdown reaction. (The shutdown can be literal -- which is how i think we react in overwhelm we can ignore/postpone/let pile up around us -- or internal -- which is how i think we react to the otherwise unavoidable.)

Now to gently wake Christine, dissemble the bed, and find a place that i can carry on a conference call from 8:30 to later while the great suck occurs in the apartment.