Yet Another Journal

Nostalgia, DVDs, old movies, television, OTR, fandom, good news and bad, picks, pans,
cute budgie stories, cute terrier stories, and anything else I can think of.

 Contact me at theyoungfamily (at) earthlink (dot) net

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» Tuesday, January 31, 2012
The Simple Woman's Daybook

Outside my window...
...the sun is just rising, not yet having gained the horizon to tangle itself within the trees. There are hot pink streaks against dark, gradually lightening blue. And, goodness, the bird feeders are empty again!

I am thinking...
...mostly of the things I need to do today. I have purchase orders to assemble and start, others to continue, and clothes to wash. At lunch I need to sweep the bathroom and put the new rugs down. (Over the weekend we bought two more microfiber rugs for the master bath. Costco had them for half the price of Bed, Bath, and Beyond.)

I am thankful...'s so quiet here. At the office I have to listen to what I think is the compressor for the HVAC system, my fan, people murmuring, the hollow sound of the hallways. The only sound here is the faint hum of the computer and the heat and whatever other sound I want (Leo Laporte later on). Oh, and Schuyler kissing and whistling, but those are pleasant sounds.

In the kitchen...
...quiet for now. Loved the Christmas goodies, but it's nice to have it plain again. James did something interesting last night; instead of using a starch as a side, he made cellophane noodles, made from beans. Worked pretty well.

I am wearing...'s going to be warmish today, so the green t-shirt and the "Mutts" pajama bottoms, with black fuzzy socks.

I am creating...
...nothing at the moment, having taken a break from crafts after Christmas. There's an unfinished cross-stitch sitting on the back of the sofa to attest to that.

I am going...
...oh, occasionally I think I am going crazy, but working government procurement will do that to you. :-) I really don't have anything planned. Really need to do something about the curtains in the bedroom, though. They slide over enough that light comes in. Want it dark! Do they make black window shades any longer?

I am wondering...
...about everything...always. Why people hurt one another. Why friends grow away. Down to little things about James' health and Schuyler's happiness. No wonder I can't sleep well at night.

I am reading...
...Letter Perfect, the story of the alphabet; December 1941, which James finally finished, and A Marked Man, a mystery featuring Abigail Adams as the sleuth.

I am hoping...
...the groundhog sees his shadow! It's already been too warm this winter! Evidently snow decorations all over the house do not act like voodoo dolls. :-) But the forecast says "partly cloudy" for Thursday. Bet that stupid oversized squirrel comes out when it's overcast.

I am looking forward to...
..."Christmas in February"! We have not yet had a chance to exchange gifts with the Lawsons, but an upcoming game night should take care of that. Looking forward to it!

I am learning...
...well, I'd like to say I was learning a lot of things about December 1941, but the book is riddled with errors, both typographical and otherwise. According to this book, Jesus was born in Jerusalem. Proofreading, what's that? Pity, because the author is trying to give a "snapshot" of American life at the time, and the pop culture references of the time are a lot of fun to read.

Around the house...
...warm and quiet. Books everywhere. About normal.

I am pondering...
...autumn. It's a good thing to ponder as spring looms. It's been so warm flowers are blooming, which I'm sure contributes to my sneezing.

A favorite quote for today...
...just substitute "Atlanta" for "Seattle" and you've got it...LOL.

“I gave three quiet cheers for Minnesota. In Seattle a dusty inch of anything white and chilly means the city lapses into full-on panic mode, as if each falling flake crashes to earth with its own individual baggie of used hypodermic needles. It’s ridiculous.”
― Cherie Priest, Bloodshot

One of my favorite things...
...I'll listen to it later on: Leo Laporte's "Tech Guy" podcasts. I don't always use the tech they talk about, but I do usually get a tip or two, several laughs, and can snooze during the Apple chat.

A few plans for the rest of the week:
Work. "Christmas in February." Maybe a trip to Books-a-Million. Barnes & Noble is so boring and annoying...people clogging the coffee shop for hours and sitting in the aisles with their laptops using the wifi. Booooooo!

A peek into my day...
...well, the usual: we call this "Waiting for Daddy":

If you'd like to participate, check out The Simple Woman's Daybook.



» Sunday, January 29, 2012
Stop and Shop
The Great Backyard Bird Count
The dog barked intermittently for two hours this morning. Grrrrrrr!

So it was not a happy morning, and we went out late grocery shopping. We went to Costco for TurboTax (the coupon expired today) and a flat of mushrooms, nibbled on a few samples, did get some milk since it's cheaper than at the grocery, then came back to Kroger.

By then it was almost two o'clock, so that the new Kroger was slammed. We had to ask someone to go in the back to get my yogurt (none of the other flavors was sold out except the one I wanted; which they had plenty of on odd!), I was delayed picking up my prescription at the pharmacy because the person checking me out thought I wanted to use my insurance, no. I forgot to buy GasX (coupons were expiring today) and had to go back through the self-check and that was all sorts of trouble.

Once we had the groceries away, we had an opportunity to have a little fun. We took my car, went to Barnes & Noble—nothing much out, but I did find one of those cool ephemera books, this for World War II (where you get pull-out documents, etc.) on the remainder shelf—and then stopped to gas up the car on the way home.

Pot roast pot pie and a cucumber/tomato salad for supper, with a chaser of Holmes on Homes.

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» Saturday, January 28, 2012
Food With Friends
The Great Backyard Bird Count
After an utterly typical week, it's been a fun weekend so far.

Friday night we tried out the new Japanese place near the Battle Ridge Kroger. I was afraid it would be expensive, but James had looked the place up on line and the prices appeared reasonable.

Well, there was a reason for that: they only post the lunch menu online and in the front of the restaurant. Dinner was considerably more. Talk about bait and switch—probably should have walked out, but instead we had the special, steak and shrimp, along with miso soup and a salad. It was quite good, but it was a singular treat. Maybe for lunch, but not for dinner again.

James needed some money for his haircut today, so I suggested we go into Kroger and buy something we needed, like mushrooms, so he could then get cash back; James said if he was going into a Kroger, he was going in the new one that opened on Wednesday. :-) So we did.

I went during lunch on Wednesday, got myself some soup because I was feeling droopy and stuffy, but there wasn't much room for maneuvering then. The huge parking lot (this is now the largest Kroger supermarket in the Atlanta area) was completely full on Wednesday; I had found one last space in the unlined parking area at the north side of the parking lot, and the store was cheek-by-jowl with employees giving away freebies and elderly people taking advantage of the 10 percent Wednesday discount. Friday the parking lot was still pretty busy, but the store was nowhere as crowded. We picked up a few things that would be going off sale before Sunday morning (pineapple for 87 cents!), then came home.

Went to bed early so we could get up before Hair Day this morning and make some couscous, and also stopped at the Winter Market* to get a pot pie for Sunday night, some chicken salad, and some mini-biscotti before going to the Butlers. James got his hair cut, we talked a lot, looked at Jessie's high-school graduation photos, and generally had a good time. We left about 12:30 to make it across town before 2 p.m.

We were heading to the Marlay House for the first Brittack "Meet'n'Greet" of the season, and the GPS tracked us through I-20 to I-75 north and then down the busy streets near the Fernbank Museum and through Avondale to get to Decatur. We were there early, but Rob Bowen and his girlfriend were already in the snug at back, and soon Sue Phillips had arrived, and Joe Campbell, followed by an assortment of others. Again, more good chat, passing around of cute videos (including this adorable snoring hibernating dormouse), discussing the different tracks at DragonCon, Joe talking about doing an English tea in the con suite (he asked what he would need for a proper English tea and Sue and I chorused "Clotted cream!"...LOL), different British series, etc. James had the brisket and I had the (all together now) lamb stew, and we were both happy.

Since we were on that side of town anyway, we decided to go to the DeKalb Farmers Market, which was just "down the road apiece" (literally; we turned right out of the Marlay House, went through downtown Decatur and a bit further on Ponce de Leon, and there it is). It was dreadfully crowded as always on weekends, but they have boneless, skinless turkey thighs for a great price, and other international goodies, so we plowed through, getting kosher salt, something for dessert, whole wheat pearl couscous, bulger wheat, ground ginger, four pounds of the turkey, some fresh peppermint (I opened the container and sniffed and my nose was delighted), and...yayyyyyy! they had frisè which I can put with the baby greens I bought at Harry's.

An uneventful ride home, where Willow was delighted to see us, and Schuyler sang and scolded for the rest of the night. We have been watching Storage Wars, which is a series about people who buy the contents of abandoned storage lockers. Sometimes they get stung, but sometimes they turn up treasures. One guy found a magic lantern (sort of a Victorian slide projector, which projected hand-colored drawings on a wall via the light of a candle), which wasn't worth all that much, but it was cool to see a real one after reading about them in The Bobbsey Twins and other Victorian novels.

* We had a funny at the Winter Market. I was sampling a small piece of coffee cake as I walked across the street where a lady had a big pit bull-type dog on a leash. He looked up at me and I smiled at him, and he noticed I was eating. All of a sudden he got this big doggie smile on his face and started getting all excited, bouncing on his toes. "You have a food! May I have some of the food? Oh, please?" Oh, and he was wagging his tail like mad and so eager to have some of that yummy-smelling cake that he was actually vibrating in excitement: "Oh, pleeeeeeeease let me have some of the food!"

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» Wednesday, January 25, 2012
The Simple Woman's Daybook
FOR TODAY, JANUARY 25, 2012 (first post of the year!)

Outside my window...
...the sun is just rising, but it's not very bright, as it is overcast.

I am thinking...
...actually I am trying not to think. My nose is stuffy and I did not sleep well at all last night; my eyes are gritty and heavy this morning.

I am thankful for...
...I'm afraid I'm not much thankful this morning, either. All my effort is into keeping my mind on my work. I'd love to have some soup for lunch. Maybe I'll truck over to the new Kroger and see what's on the soup bar.

From the learning rooms...
...never trust the status quo. Still really spooked by talk of reorganization at work.

From the kitchen...
...oh, gosh, I hope it's nothing. Christmas completely tired me of sweet treats. I want to go back to ordinary food.

I am wearing...
...a purple sweat shirt, grey sweat pants, and pink socks. (Yes, I have new socks and new sweats. Soooo exciting!)

I am creating...
...little at the moment. Post-Christmas depression has gotten me really down.

I am going... attend to my work and not much else today. Not feeling up to it and still not perked up after the holiday. I really hate this time of year. Everything had been so pretty and now it's dishwater dull again.

I am reading...
...A Pocketful of History, which is the story behind each of the images on the back of the state quarters.

I am hoping...
...for a perk-up this weekend. There is a Brittrack Meet'n'Greet upcoming, and also Hair Day.

I am hearing...
...not even the heat coming on. It's very warm, in the 50s, and going up to the 60s today. Not exactly January weather, even in Georgia. For the last two weeks, the news has been showing photos from the snowstorm last year. It's hardly believable this year!

Around the house...
...morning quiet. Gloom until I put on the light. And books all over the place. Go figure. :-)

One of my favorite things...
...Lassie reruns, which are now showing on Angel 2. Well, that is, when they're not repeating episodes multiple times. :-)

A few plans for the rest of the week:
Many more purchase orders to work on! We don't have any slowdown this year. And I do hope to feel better tomorrow. Need to take some ibuprofin later on, and before bed to help the process along.

Here is a picture for thought I am sharing...
This is a lovely photo I've never seen before.

This series has always been my favorite. Oh, it's terribly old fashioned now, and sometimes corny, but it comes with a feel-good factor, doesn't talk down to its audience like today's programming, and there are no stupid jokes about urinating or farting.

If you'd like to participate, check out The Simple Woman's Daybook



» Sunday, January 22, 2012
Two Days = Two Hours
The Great Backyard Bird Count
I mean, really. Sometimes it feels like the two days go by that fast.

Yesterday was begun in the rain. In fact, it was pouring so hard as we set out we nearly turned about and went home (especially after the tornado siren went off to alert a severe thunderstorm warning). Instead we splashed through the deluge to check out the new Kroger. The gas station is already open, but the store itself does not open until the 25th.

We'd both had only a quick breakfast, so we stopped by Dunkin Donuts, only to be disappointed: they say they have discontinued the flatbread sandwiches. Wow, weren't they just introducing some new ones not long ago? Instead I had a bagel and James had one of their "cros-sandwiches."

There was a model contest in Chattanooga, so the hobby shop was pretty much deserted, and we did not stay long, but instead decided to go to Harry's Farmers Market, which is now just a Whole Foods. By now the weather had cleared up and most of the afternoon was pleasant. We haven't been in a while and wanted to see if they had put in the same bulk food choices that the larger Whole Foods at Johnson Ferry Road has. (And the answer is: somewhat. We still couldn't find grains like quinoa and bulger wheat, although they did have bulk nuts, granola, rice, and beans.) So we wandered around and bought fresh salad vegetables, potatoes, wine to cook with ($4 is enough to spend on that!), two cookies for dessert, a wheat baguette, romano cheese, some chicken wings for supper (they had a black cherry sauce), and also supplies for an easy Sunday dinner. For this I shelled out $$$. Too rich for my blood most weekends!

The most memorable thing at Harry's happened before we went in. At the right side of the store, under cover of the garage-door'd-in area, they were having pet adoptions. A basset hound cross was baying, and they had an assortment of mixed-breed dogs, plus a pug, and about eight cats, four of which had been abandoned by their owner and which were being kept in the same cage.

We were absolutely charmed by four black Chihuahua puppies. They were lively and friendly, walking forward one by one to lick our fingers. In addition, there was what I could only describe as a "two-tone" brown puppy that looked like a Chihuahua but with fuzzy fur on its face. A woman with her daughter was looking at this puppy, and said she thought it was a Yorkie/Chihuahua cross. Well, the puppy was very taken with this little girl. She was trying to put it back into its cage, but the puppy kept biting at her fingers and struggling into her hands. When she finally took it back out and cuddled it, it calmed right down and sat in the crook in her arm like it had been born there. It was so cute.

When we got home we told Willow how close she'd come to having a little brother or sister.

We had missed the Betty White birthday tribute they did earlier in the week, so took advantage of the repeat tonight to watch it and quite enjoyed it.

Later talked to Jen and Emma on chat; Jen left early since she is on a new class schedule where the class starts at 5 a.m. That sounds like the equivalent of a horror novel to me!

We tried not to sleep late today so that going to bed tonight would be easier. We woke to a damp, grey day that spread its gloominess through all the waking hours, even getting a bit chillier as the afternoon wore on. After breakfast we did the grocery shopping, our last (hopefully) at the Battle Ridge Kroger.

Once the groceries were put up we had a spot of lunch, then went to use the last of our free movie tickets to see War Horse. In general, I enjoyed it, and was quite teary at the end. The spectacle of the first, discouraging charge and the later battle, with the roar of the big guns and the ceaseless noise, was quite impressive. The cinematography was lovely, with some memorable scenes that left images in your mind long after the film was over, and of course a John Williams score was a definite plus. I was surprised to notice that Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock) was in the cast.

However, I was struck by the fact that in the movie they have tried to justify the father's drunkenness, where in the book he is just one of those weak-willed people that allows drink to take him over, and made him into a bit of a hero. I'm also a bit puzzled at the class-struggle subplot that wandered its way in, having the local squire and squire's son be antagonists to the family. The scenes at the farm are also much longer in the film than in the book. Mostly I missed Joey's "voice" as compared with the book. I understand that the filmmakers felt that as an adult film, the horse's narrative was restrictive, but the book was an obvious parallel to Black Beauty, where the horse's narrative is the main feature. I preferred hearing Joey's side of things.

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» Friday, January 20, 2012
A Friday With My Feller
The Great Backyard Bird Count 
Simple math: James worked Saturday, so he had today off. His days off don't usually coincide with my Fridays off, so this was a rare gift.

Of course like the couple of middle-aged duffers we are, we slept late, then had breakfast. Following that we had one Christmas-related task left: we had to take the rest of the outside lights down. I had taken the strings off the railings when I put up the winter decorations, and then taken those strings and the ones off the bushes earlier in the week and put them in the garage. Now James got the ladder and got the rest of them down, and we wound them around paper towel tubes and put them away, dismantling the Moravian star as well, and cramming the octopus extension cord in the container as well.

At noon we drove to Hiram, had lunch at Folks, then went to Michaels. I needed a couple of small frames, and we also went through the clearance items. They had solid color Christmas wrap for 59 cents, so I got a pretty burgundy, a forest green, and a spring green. They will look pretty with appropriate bows. Also got some sale ribbon, and two things to put away as gifts. I need to start looking for a basket of spring/summer flowers for the porch. The one I have is sadly faded by the sun. I don't decorate much for warm weather—not only don't I feel like celebrating it, but the sun tears everything else; I'll have to dig up the photos I took of the two-year-old summer banner I had to throw away last fall because it was literally shredded by the sun.

We also went to Sam's and got some low-carb wheat tortillas, a book about healthful supermarket shopping, and a big bag of luscious-smelling naval oranges.

Spent the rest of the afternoon watching Lassie reruns.

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» Thursday, January 19, 2012
Just a Long Week
The Great Backyard Bird Count Just haven't felt much like writing this week. Very busy at work, with an ongoing protest against an award. Not feeling like doing much after work besides collapsing in front of the idiot box. Sleepy and cross most of the time. However, it was cold enough last night that I could wear my new flannel pajamas. I think this is the first time it's been cold enough for flannel in the past three years!

I did finish Morpurgo's War Horse, and am reading The Secret Gift.

Had to go to the doctor today to get refills on my meds. Have something to lower my triglycerides now as well. Was waiting in the office a very long time before being called, even though they told me he was on time, and then after that had to go to the lab to give blood (my last test was three months old and he wanted to see if my thyroid levels had changed). I also found out that my mammogram was clean. I never got the results because for some reason Kaiser did not have our proper address, although the last time I had a mammogram the letter came through fine, and I had never gotten the letter telling me the doctor wanted a follow-up because my thyroid levels were off. I only found out when I went to make the appointment after not being able to get a refill on my prescriptions.

Something nice did happen this afternoon: I got home just in time for Amazon Vine at 3 p.m. and there was Jacqueline Winspear's new Maisie Dobbs book among the choices. Now if only the new "Pink Carnation" and new Peculiar Crimes Unit books were in there as well! Ah, well, I guess you can't have everything.

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» Sunday, January 15, 2012
And On Sunday...We Didn't Rest
The Great Backyard Bird Count 
Well, except for sleeping late, but then we went to bed late. After breakfast we went grocery shopping at both Publix and Kroger. (As we approached Publix from the opposite direction of the one we usually go in, I said impulsively: "Let's park on this side of the store this time." LOL. I think I'm tired of grocery shopping.)

We ran into Alice and Ken Spivey doing their weekly shopping at Kroger. We had prescriptions to pick up, and the pharmacist asked us if we didn't want to join their automatic refill system. We didn't want to tell her that the moment the new Smyrna Kroger opens, we're outta here. Why go all that way when we can just drive down the road a couple of miles?

Groceries were put up once home, then we had lunch, and finally we got all the Christmas things put away: the tree brought downstairs, which is the hardest part since James has to carry it and it's awkward, then getting it covered up and pushed in the corner of the closet, and then stacking the other boxes on the shelves and on the floor. This means the Hallowe'en and Thanksgiving boxes have to come out first so the Christmas things can go on the bottom.

When we were through with that, we hustled into our coats and drove to Parkway Pointe to see the 3:55 p.m. showing of Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows. I guess the matinee ends at three; even with free tickets I had to pay six dollars extra! (The tickets are worth only a certain amount each.) Zowee! I'm not coming here to a movie again! (Equally depressing, we had to pass by the old Borders store on the way home, with the name still stenciled on the doors and the "ghost sign" on the building still very apparent.)

Anyway, Sherlock was fun and suspenseful, and I enjoyed it much better than I did the first one; I suppose I should watch the original again. Robert Downey didn't mumble half so much in this one, and parts of the story were quite affecting (Holmes feeling abandoned because Watson was marrying; I was getting definite House/Wilson vibes during a lot of the situations). A little suspense, a little danger, some amusing situations mostly courtesy Stephen Fry as Sherlock's brother Mycroft, lots of action and things blowing up, many improbably situations, but all fun, and Jude Law is simply smashing as Dr. Watson. (My gosh, his eyes are green.) But then I love my Watsons anyway, not just Jude Law, but Martin Freeman in the contemporary Sherlock (darn he's cute).

(Speaking of Freeman, this is the second movie we've gone to during the month, and neither time have we seen the trailer to The Hobbit. I feel cheated.)

Had turkey pot pie and a cucumber salad for supper and watched Holmes Inspection all evening. While the pie was baking I vacuumed downstairs and put it to rights, cleaned the hall, the foyer, and vacuumed the stairs. Later I vacuumed the corner where the tree had been, put the winter decorations on the divider, and then James put the rocking chair and the ottoman back in the corner, and I vacuumed the rest of the main living area.

Tomorrow I can put the regular mantel decorations back up (I miss my little autumn houses and trees) and the fall bouquet back in the hall.

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» Saturday, January 14, 2012
One January Saturday, As the Wind Was Blowing...
The Great Backyard Bird Count 
James had to go in to work this morning, but I had a good sleep-in until 8:30, then got dressed and went to the Winter Market which is being held on Saturday until March on Mill Street off Marietta Square. It was brisk and chill, and there were only a few shoppers. No fresh veggies, of course, except for some root vegetables and cabbages, but the meat vendors were there, and the folks who sell organic milk, flavored butters, Shea butter, and bread. I got Willow more cookies, bought James more of the chicken salad he likes, got a turkey pot pie for supper tomorrow night, bought a bagel for breakfast and two Portuguese rolls for later, and, since the "goat cheese guy" wasn't there, got some goat cheese from the "goat cheese lady." I have really been jonesing for some goat cheese!

Even though it was still quite chill, I stuffed the perishables in the cold bag and went up to Barnes & Noble for about an hour. I was in luck and found pumpkin bread in Starbuck's for dessert—James has had a hankering for it. I also got the Christmas "BBC History Magazine" and two cross-stitch magazines, and also a box of little Valentine cards made from Victorian ephemera. Last year I wanted Valentine cards for a gathering and could find only junky ones with media characters on them (Transformers, Cars, etc.). Don't know if I'll use them this year, but I have 'em if I want 'em!

Came home to eat my bagel, and then, sadly, to divest the Christmas tree of its finery.

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» Sunday, January 08, 2012
All Downhill From Now On
The Great Backyard Bird CountChristmas celebrations come to an end, but Christmas ever quite over? :-)

We watched—and quite overdue, too; Netflix must think we lost the disk!—the next three episodes in Season 2 of Murdoch Mysteries while we were eating supper (nice plain fare: pork roast, ramen noodles and cucumbers). "Convalescence" was quite good: Murdoch incapacitated but encountering a mystery while officer Crabtree investigates his own crime with the help of a parrot. Then I found the animated Star Trek on streaming Netflix.

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» Friday, January 06, 2012
And So Christmas Ends...
The Great Backyard Bird Count...with Twelfth Night and Epiphany in Holiday Harbour.

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» Tuesday, January 03, 2012
No Escape from the Real World
The Great Backyard Bird CountI am fit to be tied and morose at the same time.

When I arrived at work this morning, prepared to clean out my e-mail box and then get to my orders, I discovered there was a project I needed to do today due to time sensitivity. Accordingly, I got everything else in order so that I could devote all afternoon to this project, which involved getting documentation printed and then in order.

I discovered to my dismay that the printing that needed doing was much more extensive than I had expected. Worse, there was no way to do it expeditiously. The material was in a big .zip file with about eight folders in it. Each folder contained Word documents. Some of them had eight or ten Word documents. However at least four of them had at least thirty or forty documents in them, and the largest one must have had at least a hundred documents in it. I thought surely there was a way to tell Windows to print all the documents, I had to open each one separately, tell it to print, hit the okay button, click the document to close, and then click the button that told Windows not to change the document, and start all over again. I started this about 2:30 and by 4:30, when I usually leave, I was still not done. So I stayed until 5:30 to get the documents all printed and indexed.

This meant I had to go home cross-country rather than via the freeway, which was spectacularly colored in yellow, orange, and red on the traffic maps. I whiled away the ride looking for what Christmas lights remained—quite a few, and happily drove into our street and into the garage.

I noticed that a couple of the lights on the porch appeared to be out, so I came out of the garage rather than going directly inside to check them out. Nope, they weren't out, just behind the railing of the porch. So I went up on the porch to replace the banner—the wind was blowing so hard last night I was afraid it would pull the mount out—and as I did so, I faced the mailbox.

Son of a bitch! The new Christmas cover I bought for the mailbox was gone. Someone swiped my original one that I bought in Pennsylvania right before Christmas last year, but this year's had stayed intact. I came in the house and asked James if he had for some reason removed it. He said it was on the mailbox when he checked the mail at 5 p.m. So somewhere between five and 6:30, someone stole it!

Dammit, if Windows had offered a proper way to easily print multiple files within a folder within a .zip file, maybe I would have made it home on time and either caught the thieves at it or deterred them from doing it. Visigoths! Barbarians! [And I'm not just talking about the thieves.]

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» Monday, January 02, 2012
Just Another Monday
The Great Backyard Bird Count Or would have been, except for the Tournament of Roses Parade. We had breakfast well in hand as the HGTV "Making of" show aired, mostly showing how the HGTV float, based on this year's "Dream House" built in Park City, Utah, was constructed. This one has a snow machine as part of the design.

Well, it was a lovely sunny day in Pasadena, perfect for a parade. There was some inventive stuff this year against a theme of imagination, including a float with three dinosaurs, many dream sequences, a super flying saucer presentation with little green aliens, a float from Paramount Pictures that went from the biplane in Wings to the starship Enterprise, enough marching bands to fill several stadia, and a final float that was a tribute to Roy Rogers, playing "Happy Trails" to end the parade. Unfortunately the HGTV announcers are developing more logorrhea every year. How about shutting up and letting us listen to the marching bands, guys? (The Wisconsin band, of course, was playing "On Wisconsin"!)

Once the parade ended, we had to get to the errands. Since we needed various things and not just a headlight bulb, we went to Wally World. James found two more strings of blue Christmas lights in someplace totally unrelated to the Christmas clearance area (which was pretty much stripped; just junk left; I did get three clear snowflakes for winter decor, and also some small autumn paper plates for a future game night), I picked up some socks, noted some sweatshirts and pants, and we did get the headlight bulb for the truck. We came home the long way, via Publix, to pick up paper towels on sale and buy a few twofers and more supplies for the party. I think all we have left to get is the chicken wings.

We were barely in the garage when James started disassembling the headlight in order to get the old bulb out. The left headlight is cheek by jowl to the battery and it was a concern for some minutes for him working in such a small space. But he finally got the light unplugged, the rubber protector off, the spring that held the lightbulb off—only to discover that the guide to buying the lightbulb at Walmart had given us the wrong number and therefore the incorrect lightbulb. So we had to pop in my car and run up to Advance Auto Parts for the correct type. Once home, it was replaced in a trice while I ran outside to "help" our log reindeer. It has been clear and sunny, but terribly windy today, the type of wind that sneaks under your coat and down your collar no matter what you do. It was rattling the banner so much that I took it down for the evening, but I did right "Woody" and "Holly" and replace Holly's antler. Alas, one of Woody's antlers (a tree branch with bows on it) had vanished completely.

Spent what was left of the afternoon reading and watching "Lassie's Gift of Love." James took one of our containers of turkey soup and made it with dumplings, ala chicken and dumplings, a warm treat for such a chilly evening, thick and savory, with small dumplings, vegetable flakes, and pieces of turkey.

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» Sunday, January 01, 2012
Tracking Unicorns...
...and other New Year tales in Holiday Harbour.

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Awww...Aren't They Cute?
David Tennant Wedding: Newlyweds Pictured a Day After Their Wedding

So the Doctor married the Doctor's daughter...LOL.

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