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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» Sunday, February 21, 2016
Da Gimp

I don't know what this foot pain (and elbow pain) is, but it's a fat pain in the...well, you know. Every turn I made in bed night I hit something that hurt: one ulnar nerve or the other, or what I've identified as the end of the metatarsal bone for the small toe (both feet, but the left one hurts worse), or my right knee, which seems to have gone on sympathy strike with everyone else. Finally, after James got up to start work, I limped into the bathroom, took four ibuprofin, and went back to bed until nine o'clock. I'd like to say it worked wonders, but I'd be lying. I limped through walking the dog and when I went to Kroger brought James' cane and took one of the carts. I bought a new sunhat at Costco Friday night, a tight-weave hat that is supposed to have an SPF rating of 50, and I wore that to keep off the steady light rain.

Popped around Kroger as fast as I could go without forgetting something, including picking up some Easter cards. Found our Easter candy, too, two small dark chocolate Lindt bunnies and six Cadbury chocolate eggs; there's Easter week dessert right there. :-)

Wanted to do something fun for about an hour, so headed to Barnes & Noble. Had to get past an accident on the East-West Connector on the way, but made it there in one piece. Such a PITA having to move so slowly! Just checked out the magazines, took a couple of notes of books I wanted to buy, and, even though I didn't have a coupon, bought the first Longmire book. Sometimes you just gotta buy a book without a coupon. :-)

James was at lunch when I got home, so he was able to help heft all those groceries up the stairs, and then I could change into comfortable clothes, have a sandwich, and check out the new mouse. For the afternoon, I put the 1940s UK radio station on and we listened to the Fabulous Forties all afternoon. I reloaded the new version of Citrix on my desktop, and that seemed to work fine, so then took a deep breath and tried loading Windows 10 onto the desktop again. I have been unable to do it for months because wayyyyyy back when this computer was on XP I had Nero 7 on it to burn DVDs. When I upgraded to Win7, Nero wouldn't work any longer. I tried to uninstall it, but the uninstall never completed. It didn't bother the performance of the computer, so I just left it. However, when I tried to upgrade to Win10, it stubbornly said it could not install without that fragment of Nero being uninstalled.

Finally I went to Nero's site and found something that was supposed to work, and I guess it did, because Win10 finally loaded this time. WordPerfect won't work. I get a Microsoft Visual Basic Runtime error. Seriously? I suppose I can reload it, but...what a PITA, guys. (Also, Eudora mailboxes won't compact again. I hope it doesn't end up being a problem like last time.) I'll wait to see if anyone on Facebook has input first.

We had macaroni for supper and are now waiting for the Disneyland anniversary special.

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» Saturday, February 20, 2016
At the End of Difficult Week...

Well, it was just a dandy week. Monday I found out I indeed do have to have a colonoscopy. Not only "Draino" the night before, but a clear liquid diet the whole day before. Oh, great. Not only going to be hungry, but it's a day and a half without milk. I'm the way with milk that some people are with coffee. Grrr.

Tuesday when I started work I found out we are moving buildings. (They probably announced this at the staff meeting I missed when I was sick.) Now, the only people who were supposed to move were the people who were in the building they're remodeling (Colgate). But it's changed again. They want us "all together," so we have to move from Stanford, too. The new building is two buildings further down the road; it's empty now and looks scruffy around the edges. I don't see a lot of shady parking spaces for the summer. And it's back to cubicle land. I knew the office thing would end eventually, but I've done so well in the past 2 1/2 years not being under fluorescent lights. Maybe I can lobby for a dark corner?

With that in mind I finished up as many automatic closeouts as I could this week so I won't have to pack them. Was really dragging and headachy from the sun when I got home on Friday, walked Tucker, and then lay down on the futon with three ibuprofin in me until James got home.

Sadly, dinner was less than inspiring. We usually have a good meal at Fresh2Order but both our soups were overly salty, and for chicken vegetable soup, it had a paucity of chicken. We tried their icebox pies and they came with whipped cream on the top scooped out like ice cream. It had a funny taste and even James didn't eat it. Afterwards we had a better time wandering around Costco, and, among other things, picked up some rice and millet ramen noodles. Those should be yummy.

We went to bed early for a Friday night. There was a funny during the night: I woke up to hear James snoring. He's not supposed to be snoring using a C-PAP. I waited a little bit, then shook him. "Why are you snoring?" "I am?" "Yes!" It turned out he had woken up needing to use the bathroom. He took the C-PAP mask off, then Morpheus kicked in again and he fell back asleep, sans mask.

This morning we had breakfast at the IHOP on the East-West Connector, happily utilizing the senior menu. We just made it in ahead of the mob. Then we drove up to BJs, having intended to buy a three-pack of Flonase there with a newspaper coupon, which BJs takes. However, BJs' price for Flonase is so much higher than Costco that it is cheaper to by them at Costco without a coupon. We can use them on single Flonase units if we like, until mid-March. Did get some Skinny Pop, canned chicken, and "plastic" (American) cheese, and a new "Chicken Soup for the Soul" book of dog stories. We also stopped briefly at the Office Max in the next shopping center to get a new mini-mouse. The one I have died after I used it only one month (new battery does not help); very odd since I always use Logitech mice because they're so reliable. This time I'm keeping the receipt, as Logitech says there's a limited 1-year warranty.

We thought about stopping at Barnes & Noble on the way home, but it started to rain, so we decided to have lunch instead. We were going to eat at Tin Drum on Barrett Parkway, then noticed a restaurant two doors down called Twisted Kitchen. It's kinda like Uncle Maddio's Pizza Joint where you start with a crust and build your own pizza, except in this case you start with pasta (five different kinds) and then add things. They have five different meats and a dozen different vegetables and five sauces. I got linguine topped with bits of steak, onions, garlic, tomato, and mushrooms, with a asian sesame sauce, and they cook it all together for you and then I had them top it with chow mein noodles and sesame seeds. James had twisted pasta with shrimp and an orange sauce and his choice of veggies, also with the noodles and the seeds. We both enjoyed it, although it's hard to spin linguine on a plastic fork!

It was only three o'clock when we got home, so I pulled out all the W-2s and other documentation and did the taxes. Canny TurboTax—we've been filing through their website for a couple of years now since it's stupid to spend $49 for the software when our standard deduction always is more than our itemized. All we've got to deduct anymore is the mortgage; our donations add up to so little lately. But to copy the information from the past year's tax forms, they now charge you! Linda can type for herself, thank you, and doesn't need to pay you $30 to copy information for her; she entered everything manually and checked everything once, twice, and a third time. This time they let you file the state form free, too, which is probably why they were trying to charge us for the copying. So I printed out everything and now we wait for the file.

For supper James took some broth and added miso soup, cooked up one of the cakes of millet/rice ramen, and added a can of chicken. It made a pretty good soup. We watched the last two segments of the This Old House Belmont Victorian home. Looks so spiffy in its new golden color, with its front porch restored, new stained glass windows, and those magnificent hardwood floors. I can't imagine how she's going to keep that big house clean! Later we watched an Aerial America about Washington, DC, and The Incredible Doctor Pol.

I have had the strangest thing going on all day: when I got up this morning, my feet hurt. Not like I've been walking on them all day, but like they are bruised as if someone beat the soles of my feet. Everything from the balls of my feet forward are fine, but both of the heels and the outer sides are sore, not just when I walk, but when I touch them. Plus both my elbows hurt the same way; I can't even put my elbow down on the arm of a chair. Just cupping my hand around the elbow makes it hurt very badly around "the funny bone." On both arms. How bizarre. My elbows are always banging into something, but in this case I haven't banged either of them on anything.

Hmn. Could be bursitis. Mom had it, and it does say you can get it in your heels as well as your elbows.

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» Sunday, February 14, 2016
The Simple Woman's Daybook


Outside my window...
it's sunny and so chilly out we can have the curtains open. That doesn't happen often; they are usually tightly shut to keep the heat out and, when it's warm, keep the air conditioner from ceaselessly running. $200 electric bills are quite enough, thankyouverymuch, without allowing Mr. Sun to jack up the cost more.

I am thinking... nice it is right now. It is Valentine's Day, but James had to work, so the compromise is that he's working at home. I have "Escape," the easy listening channel on, and from a seat on the sofa can see the birds at the feeder through the dining room windows: fat little chickadees, wrens, pine warblers, titmice, and finches fluttering around. We had our Valentine dinner last night at Atkins Park and gave "practical gifts" to each other, restaurant gift cards for Red Lobster and Olive Garden (we were going to do Amazon or Barnes & Noble cards, but the restaurant cards got us twice as many gas points). Now we can go back to OG and have beef tortelloni. :-)

I am thankful...
...for a quiet day; Friday I ran around picking up craft staples and then we went grocery shopping, so today can be a nice breather. Tomorrow I must go face a "frog."
In the kitchen...
...dirty dishes, mostly, waiting to go into the dishwasher. We have Sprouts Italian wedding soup for supper.

I am wearing...
...purple sweatshirt and grey sweatpants and red-and-blue striped kneesocks, which I am enjoying because it is supposed to be bloody warm by next weekend, almost 70. Ugh.

I am creating...
...tiny electrons across the screen right now.

I am going...
...peacefully right now. Tomorrow will be a different story.

I am wondering...
...if the warm will stay long, or if I will see a yellow-rumped warbler this year, or what we can stash with us for Anachrocon because the Marriott's restaurant is so bloody expensive, and how we are going to manage coming home from Atomicon and going to Leigh's wedding...oh, so many things, as Betty Roberts would say.

I am reading...
...right now I am reading a British magazine I have gotten hooked on, "The Simple Things." It's lots nicer than "Real Simple," which has too much white space and is a waste of time. This is the January issue and so far there has been a story about living in Tasmania, a cozy photo-story about living in an electricity-free log house in Norway, the history of blue jeans, the Danish concept of hygge (cozy home/friends/family feeling), and lots of warm fuzzy winter photos. There is always a one-page short story at the end, too.

As for books, I am reading Walking the Bible, having just finished Little Woman in Blue, a novel about May Alcott.

I am hoping...
...for no tadpoles out of the frog.

I am looking forward to...
...Anachrocon, even though I don't see a Wild Wild West panel! How can you have a "Weird Wild West" and not have a WWW panel?

Around the house...
...James has been working since 7:45, so he has broken for lunch and I can hear something warming up in the skillet. Tucker is apparently looking pitiful next to him. Snowy is singing along to "Escape."

I am pondering...
...oh, what's wrong with people today. Someone stole a brand-new snowblower out of my 95-year-old uncle's backyard and left a snow shovel in its place!

A favorite quote for today...
"You don't have to try very hard to find the ultimate escape. There's no need to travel far or to send your mind on a journey of the imagination. Pick a clear night when the moon is large and step outside. Stand in your back garden and simply look up for a trip through the heavens that never fails to humble and awe. ...[S]ometimes all you want to do is wonder. And wander. I call it Wonderlust: the desire to be amazed by what's around us."   . . . . Lisa Sykes in the January issue of "The Simple Things."

One of my favorite things... for supper: Sprouts Italian wedding soup. It's the only thing I'll eat spinach in.

A few plans for the rest of the week:
Slimy, nasty, disgusting frog.

A peek into my day...
Snowy wears a Valentine heart on his face all year long:

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



» Saturday, February 13, 2016
Friends and Fabulous Food

Nice and snuggly warm this morning, so of course we had to get up early. :-) One dog walk down and we headed out to the Butlers for this month's Hair Day. When we arrived only Ben and Terica were there, and poor Ben was suffering from the aftereffects of oral surgery. They left not long afterwards.

The Campbells, Pat with Roman, the Boroses, and the Elder-Gibson group arrived later and we had a chili feast (well, everyone else did; I tried a little of the Cincinnati chili but even that was too spicy for my palate). The big news was that Colin got accepted for graduate school (he is going for a Masters in sports nutrititon) and that the short film that Neil worked on for a Jewish short film festival got very good reviews and feedback! (There was also some bad news: the Butlers have a water leak in the slab under their house. That means someone will have to come in and jackhammer up the floor to fix it. Oy. However, they will get new flooring in the area out of it. I feel bad for the cats; they will be freaked out will all the noise.)

We had to skedaddle as soon as we were done eating so that James could make his meeting, which he said was SRO today. I simply had to vacuum, so finally took apart the old printer shelf, which has been shoved up against the partition between the kitchen and the dining room so I could do so without it being in the way. Tossed a bunch of old electronics out, too: my PDA, which I haven't used since 2010 and all the accessories to it, like the 5600 baud modem. We need to get rid of James', too, after we get some files off it. He had subscribed to "The Grantville Gazette" fanzines and they are only on his PDA. They're in Microsoft .lit format, but Calibre will easily translate those into .epub.

Aside from another dog walk, making the bed, and the cleanup, the other thing I did was assemble the new flowers for the front porch. Not too bad. Right now I'll just hide them in the garage and not think about spring coming, though. :-)

Since James is working tomorrow and restaurants are too crowded on Valentines Day anyway, we went out to eat tonight. Did a repeat of last year and went to Atkins Park for the delicious "drunken pork" in a wonderful light but tasty sauce and sweet grits. I hate grits like poison, but these are soft, not grainy, and just lightly sweet. It's what I imagined Meg's blancmange might taste like in Little Women. For supper we had ice cream at Baskin Robbins and spent the evening watching The Incredible Dr. Pol. I have incredible respect for country vets; what messes they work in! His son Charles was raising a baby peafowl—how darling!

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» Friday, February 12, 2016
Skipping Through Retail

Spent today getting some errands done. Headed to Walmart first to buy more birdseed for the feeders, then took the bags directly home so I could fill them. It would be almost into the 60s today (and it was; I had to discard my jacket about 10:30 because it was just too warm), but the temps are supposed to be very cold over the weekend.

The rest of the early afternoon I went to Bed, Bath & Beyond to buy one of those car canes; James thought it might come in handy when he rides in the car. Depressing: the grilling stuff is out already. This means the Atlanta Pollen Festival can't be far behind. I didn't spend much time browsing anywhere at all—hit Michaels with a coupon to buy some new flowers for the porch since the summer sun has done a number on the basket I've used the past two years; the flowers were on sale and so was the container, so I used the coupon for floral foam, and then trotted around JoAnn to get some "ingredients" for gifts—but I admit I did duck into Best Buy to look at the Surface Pro 4 tablets. Mighty nice, and I love the pen.

My last stop was at Barnes & Noble to pick up the latest "book collector" mystery with a coupon. Found a cross-stitch magazine with a budgie pattern and the new "The Simple Things," too.

Came home for a very late lunch, some tidying up, and of course another walk of the dog as a sequel to this morning's stroll. We had supper at Uncle Maddio's Pizza Joint and then, because James is making cornbread to go along with lunch for hair day tomorrow, we finished up the shopping—thank God that's done!—and came home.

For the first time in a long time, we watched Hawaii Five-0 "live" rather than via the DVR. Lord, it's painful watching anything with commercials any longer. There are so many breaks and so many ads in each break, and most of them are dull as ditchwater. They make the hour go by sooooooooooo slowlyyyyyyyyyy.

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» Sunday, February 07, 2016
Out of This World

Up much too late watching The Man from U.N.C.L.E. The last one we saw was about a serum that THRUSH steals that makes people heal rapidly from wounds and enhances their physical abilities. A race car driver is shot and then the next day is miraculously recovered. I never watched this series much when it was on originally, even when David McCallum was all over "Tiger Beat." I was interested to see that the women were much less stereotypical on this series than on other 1960s series, where Jim West could bat his eyes and the young woman villain would give up her evil life, etc. Oh, compared to today there were sexist elements like women as eye-candy, but they were still remarkably strong and self-sufficient nevertheless. Like the young schoolteacher that got involved in this THRUSH caper. She was immune to Napoleon and Illya's charms (until they offered her money!) and when they were tying her to the mattress to be drowned she didn't even scream. I would have been in hysterics by then.

Needless to say we did not have eight hours sleep. After the usual morning chores we went by Kroger. James dropped me off so I could pick up the Sunday paper, some bread for lunch, and Sinex for him and he went for gasoline. When that was finished we went to the Super Sunday Collector's Con at the Marriott at Century Center. We don't collect comics (although I'll always look out for Dell Lassie comics and check out the Walt Disney stuff; wish my mom had bought me that 101 Dalmatians comic when the movie came out—it originally sold for 12¢ and they wanted $40!) or action figures, but it was fun to look around. Nice to see a bunch of little girls in cosplay outfits rather than just little boys, and they weren't all princesses, either, although we saw a very fetching Elsa. One vendor did have books, but they were under the tables and it was hard getting down there with my knees hurting. I did dig out an old Whitman book as a gift, and would have loved to have rummaged through them all: there was a paperback adaptation of 77 Sunset Strip, series books I remember being on the "adventure" shelves when I was a kid like Shell Scott and The Destroyer, a Whitman adaptation of Steve Canyon, an old copy of Heinlein's Star Beast, etc.

So we walked around twice and talked to Mark Heffernan for a while about Anachrocon in three weeks, and when we felt we had enough we left and went to Barnes & Noble at Perimeter Mall for about an hour. The clearance shelves are down to $2 apiece for items and it's mostly junk. Saw an interesting new book, Dead Presidents.

And we got home in time to see most of the first run of the Puppy Bowl, with an adorable black and white Shih Tzu puppy named Posey as the cutest of the night, but of course they're all adorable, including the Shar Pei who was literally a couch potato.

Later had chicken strips with salad for supper and watched America's Funniest Home Videos and then Alaska: the Last Frontier reruns.

Super Bowl? What Super Bowl? :-)

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» Saturday, February 06, 2016
Back to the 60s (Thankfully, Not the Temperature)

Spending most of the day at the doctor and getting labs and medicine yesterday, and not being able to get out of a test I don't want to take, was not conducive to getting a good night's rest. (At least I finally got my shingles shot, which now itches more than it did yesterday. Bleah.)  It didn't help that the Chinese food we ended up getting for dinner (because everything else was overcrowded by the time we got through massive traffic jams) didn't sit well, and both James and I kept waking up all night.

So we took our time eating breakfast, next I walked Tucker, and then we got some things out of the way. James had a stack of books he'd already read piled up under his bedroom window, blocking it, and I wanted to open it, too. So we boxed them up to take downstairs and also pulled out the new airplane bookends Mom and Candy had given him for Christmas. We put these on the top of the bookcase to hold some of his emergency survival books. Then I vacuumed it all out and put his fan in the window.

Most of the books went downstairs to be shelved, but about four of them ended up in the box we will take up to McKay's when it's full. Last time McKay's didn't give us anything for computer books, so we boxed those up along with the books McKay's didn't take last time to take to the library for donation to the book sale. We also put some of the holiday decoration boxes back into the closet, but I'm still hoping to strengthen the shelves before we put the remainder of the boxes up.

Finally, way after three, we headed out, under a canopy of mackerel clouds striping the blue sky, went past Publix to drop plastic bags off for recycling, then hit the library to drop two boxes of books off, and finally headed out to get something to eat. I wasn't hungry while I was cleaning and loading, but by the time we finished I sure was! We'd received a gift card that was good at a number of restaurants, so we went to Longhorn and had a late lunch/early supper, small Renegade steaks and an appetizer. After that we just headed home, since we'd finished the shopping on Friday night and there were no coupons we needed to deal with.

Been watching The Man from U.N.C.L.E. on the Decades channel all night. Presently they're showing the black-and-white first season episodes. One episode featured Barbara Feldon the year before she did Get Smart.

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