Wed. Jan 4: Dashing Through the Cold

Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Waxing Moon
Sunny and cold

Busy day yesterday. Worked on the book. Worked with my students. It amazes me that the ones who complained the loudest and made the most excuses about not writing their 1K/day because they were “working on the short story” or “working on the exercises” are now bitching and moaning because I stripped the January short story requirement and most of the exercises, so that all they’d have to do is focus on the novel with no distractions — they’re the ones now moaning that there’s no short story requirement and not enough exercises in the month. Just can’t win with some people. I have to remember the ones who are quietly working — who are, actually, the bulk of the class. The ones doing the work need the bulk of the attention, not the squawkers.

In any case, I’m juggling the classes, prepping for the Prompt Playground (which should be a ton of fun – a two-hour webinar, which I hope some of you can attend), etc. I’ve got some work to do for Confidential job #1, I’m still in negotiations for that other job, I’ve got to get OLD-FASHIONED DETECTIVE WORK out to the publisher today, and I’m in the early stages of negotiation for a one-off editing job. Costume Imp and I also have to go to the grocery store for the Big Party Shop, and I’ve got to tackle my office, which looks like a tornado went through it. I’d love to blame the kitten, but it’s my fault, not the kitten’s.

Took my mom to acupuncture and then for her blood test. Costume Imp and I then went to Lavender Moon and got some great stuff (I bought a new tarot deck, yay). We went to lunch at the Beehive (yummy) and then did some grocery shopping. Imp baked a wonderful raspberry cake, and I made a beef stew for dinner.

All good.

Lots to do, RSVPs coming back in for the party — I think it’ll be fun. Somehow, it all gets done. I just have to tackle each piece and then let it fall into the puzzle, instead of running around thinking, “Oh, there’s so much to do, how will I ever get it done?” You get it all done by not dicking around and DOING it.

I’d love to just sit and read the other two Kevin Hearne books. I’m about half-way through HEXED, and thoroughly enjoying that, too.

Devon

Saturday, June 18, 2011


View over Provincetown Harbor

Saturday, June 18, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and warm

Yesterday was kind of rough. Didn’t feel well at all due to the bite. Called the health line (since I now actually have access to health care), but unless I’m going into shock, all they can do is give me cortisone cream, and that didn’t help anyway. It was so swollen that I couldn’t wear jeans — couldn’t get them on. Had to wear yoga pants.

I did my morning quota for SPIRIT REPOSITORY, but didn’t feel well enough to comment on student work, which puts me way behind for the rest of the weekend. But there’s no point in not being coherent — that doesn’t help them.

Costume Imp moved the ENTIRE lawn. He made some adjustments on the lawnmower and wrestled it into submission. And he showed me what he did, so the next time it acts up, I should be able to do it, too. It looks great.

We also found the ants moved under the urn — I’m ready to take a flamethrower to the front yard — it it was “make the lawn boil” again. And he found some damage to the base of a tall tree in the back that could be a problem, and I have a message in to the owner. I’d hate to lose that tree, but if it keeps getting eaten at the base, it’s going to go over, and it’ll hurt someone’s house badly.

I took him to lunch at the Beehive in Sandwich, one of our favorite places. Then, we went over to the Library, and I got my library card from them — they are on a different network than the rest of the cape, with a loan system consisting of 28 off-Cape libraries, including the fabulous one in Plymouth and the library at Tufts University. And i got out a nice stack of books here, too!

We stopped at Lavender Moon on the way back, and he found a couple more pieces for his collection, and then the grocery store. Turns out our colleague who’s leaving Broadway to come here made the front page of the local paper and will be only one town over from me, as an artist in residence. So we shot over a welcome message. He drives up (with his cats) tomorrow.

I did some research and adjusted a poultice recipe. I made a concoction of oats, baking soda, turmeric, and olive oil, mixed it well, slathered it on a wound pad, and taped it down over the bite. It’s not entirely logical — the fang marks are even, but spaced so far apart the jaw would belong to something about 40 pounds, and I’d notice a 40-pound something clamped to my leg! So I don’t know what it was, just that it hurt like hell. The poultice made a big difference. I could feel it draw, and then I could feel when it was done (about 90 minutes later). It drew out something icky, the swelling’s down, and, once I cleaned off the turmeric (which stained the skin a bit), it looked pretty good. I put on an echinacea-and-eucalyptus cream that worked better than the cortisone, and feel much better all the way around. Fever’s gone, too.

Imp prepared us a lovely light Tuscan supper of basil, mozzarella, tomato, prosciutto, and melon. Yum.

We watched THE SORCERER’S APPRENTICE on HBO. Some clever moments, but there were passages I found downright offensive. Glad I didn’t pay to see it in the theatre!

At least I’m feeling better today and can hopefully make progress with everyone’s exercises. We’d hoped to go to an arts festival and a farmer’s market today, but if it’s raining a lot, we might skip it.

Had a decent work session on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY. It keeps surprising me, in a good way. I just have to stay focused and finish.

Costume Imp woke up early and is already baking! So I’m doing my writing.

Devon

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Snowy and cold

I talk about pots in today’s entry of Gratitude and Growth. Hop on over.

Saturn went retrograde this morning, and will stay retrograde until June 12, according to my calender. Saturn is the planet of life lessons. When it goes retrograde, the life lessons it tried to teach you in the last retrograde and you ignored/refused to learn will come back and bite you in the butt here. Saturn does not take prisoners; it is a tough love planet. If you keep making the same mistakes, you dig yourself in deeper.

I have a dear friend who, since I’ve known her, has been caught in a pattern and refuses to break it. Saturn retrogrades are particularly difficult for her. We’ve talked in detail how to break these patterns holding her back, but she refuses. And yet she wonders why each Saturn retrograde cycle is more difficult than the previous one. Until she takes action to break the negative patterns, it’s going to keep getting worse.

I went through a couple of those cycles when I knew it was time to leave Broadway,but I was afraid so to do, both financially and emotionally. And, each Saturn retrograde cycle, I was reminded (harshly) that it was time to go.

Hopefully, moving here broke a negative pattern in which I was mired, and hopefully I can learn how to get what I want and stand up for myself in a more positive way in this cycle. I have to make sure I don’t fall back into old patterns just because they’re familiar.

Yesterday, it snowed almost all day. There wasn’t a lot of accumulation, but it was still kind of a pain to get around. Got to the library; returned the books due, got out some new ones, and got my mom all set up with her library card. They are so nice there!

Back home, read for awhile, then called the place holding the seminar to make sure it was still on. It was, so I layered up and headed back out onto the road. My little lane was kind of a mess, but once I got onto the bigger roads, it was fine, as long as I was cautious. The turnoff to the seminar location was tricky, and the hill going up — let’s just say I’m grateful I have a VW!

The first parking lot hadn’t been plowed since the last storm, so there was no way I was going to park there. I managed to squeeze into a parking spot closer to the buildings, but those roads were in bad shape.

It was a small class, among them the nature columnist I met a few days ago at Ashumet, which was great fun — we exchanged information and will go play, soon.

I had mixed feelings about the class. The weather was too bad for us to go tromping around identifying plants, so it was modified so we could stay inside. All good. The teacher knew what she was talking about, but her style of teaching did not work for me. I found her very condescending and making sweeping generalizations: “We all demand prescriptions”, “Heaven forbid we turn off the TV” , “you won’t read these guides, but you should”– stuff like that. I was biting my tongue, wanting to say, “Listen, bitch, maybe most of your students do that, but why do you think we’re here, learning this? I haven’t had a prescription since 2002, and it’s easier to pill a feral cat than to get me to take anything stronger than an Advil. And I have the TV off most nights to read. And when I get a guide, I READ it from cover to cover. You just met me; don’t assume you know anything about me or that I fit some preconceived societal notions.”

To actually say that in class would have been incredibly rude, even for me, so I kept my mouth shut, but I think my new acquaintance next to me knew something was up from the way I shifted around in my chair. I kept having to unfold my arms and change my body position, because, in a class of five, it’s noticeable when you have negative body language.

I’m sure she thought I was responding negatively because I’m her societal cliche.

Once I could filter through the way the information was presented, I got some good notes, which I now have to learn.

However, I also felt she didn’t have proper respect for poisonous plants. I’m as deeply attuned to the facts that there are a lot of positive uses for poisonous plants as she is. However, a poisonous plant doesn’t give a damn about your beliefs or “place in society” or anything else. If you don’t approach a poisonous plant with the proper respect and knowledge, it’s gonna kill you, no matter who you are. It’s very non-discriminatory.

She knows a lot, but her teaching style doesn’t work with me or connect positively with me (really, one should not leave a class wanting to smack the instructor upside the head). But you’re not going to get along with everyone, and I can be cordial when we meet again (as we’re bound to in a community this small) and appreciate the information I was able to separate out from the teaching style. She’s simply not the teacher under whom I want to train professionally next year, when I am in a position to take classes for certification. I shouldn’t have to fight so hard through the teaching style to get to the information.

I managed to make it down the hill (love my VW) and back onto the road. Stopped at Lavender Moon to get the icky energy off, replenish some incense, and have a nice chat with the proprietor. Actually, I made a conscious effort to leave the negativity outside the door before I entered the shop.

Came home, burned incense, roasted a chicken with lemon caper sauce, and read Susan Wittig Albert’s WORMWOOD, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I used to read each of her China Bayles mysteries as soon as it came out (because of the herb shop aspect as much as the mystery). I don’t know why I stopped, but I’m pretty far behind at this point.

We’re supposed to get hammered with another storm today, so I’m staying home to write and comment on exercises. The big black cat sauntered past this morning, and is lounging on top of the shed across the way.

Bacon and eggs for breakfast, and then, back to the page.

Devon

Wednesday, January 5, 2010

Wednesday, January 5, 2011
Waxing Moon
No Retrogrades
Sunny and cold

We are retrograde free for a few days. Can you believe it? Take a few minutes to really feel what it’s like, because it’s quite rare.

Costume Imp slept in yesterday. I was up early, as usual, yoga, meditation, fed the cats, made the coffee, did my first 1K of the day, taught my classes.

Around 8:30, I thought it was a civilized hour to make some noise, so I baked cinnamon rolls and showered.

We had a leisurely morning and walked the property, talking about garden possibilities, which are discussed over on Gratitude and Growth. We finally managed to get out of the house about noon.

Headed to Lavender Moon, which was, as always, was wonderful. I bought some incense, and Imp found a beautiful Egyptian piece which had obviously been waiting just for him, since the woman behind the counter couldn’t remember ever seeing it before!

We had lunch at the Beehive Tavern, one of my favorite spots. It was delicious, as always. Then, up to the Sandwich Village Herb Shop, where I stocked up on lavender (I want to vacuum the carpets before the party tomorrow, and I’m almost out of lavender for that — hopefully this summer, I can use home-grown lavender). I found a couple of books and calendars I needed, and then — there was a gorgeous statue of Cerridwen. I knew I shouldn’t really spend the money, but I kept coming back to it. It’s so beautifully rendered and just fascinated me. So I bought it. One less patio chair, right? 😉 Or I just have to write another menu for someone.

I better hustle a few quick-turnaround, quick-pay jobs this month to make up for what I’ve spent on books and statues!

After Sandwich, it was over the Sagamore Bridge and up Rt. 3 to Plymouth. They’ve drydocked the Mayflower! Perhaps they’ve done it every year, but I was truly surprised. And the great little shops next to it were shut, which is a shame, because they have delightful oddities you can’t get anywhere else.

We stopped at Plymouth Pebble — really, to have this gorgeous faux Greek temple around this tiny piece of granite just makes me laugh. We walked up the hill to the overlook, with its gorgeous view of the bay, and then walked up to the main street of town, which has lots of great little shops, most of whom are taking a much-deserved January hiatus.

Laughing Moon was, unfortunately, closed. They seem to open and close randomly, which, on days I drove all the way from NY to see them drove me nuts, but being only a few minutes away is not a big deal.

Drove back to the Cape, stopped at Trader Joe’s for the fixings for pizza and some things for the party. Came home, realized we hadn’t bought our MegaMillions tickets, went out and did that. Had some eggnog while we caught up on stuff online (I love wireless, we can work anywhere), watched the weather. Imp may be here an extra day or so because of weather.

We made pizza, which was great, and had a quiet evening working on our various projects that needed work.

Today we have a few errands to run and few things to get in for the party and the upcoming storm. We might go looking for the lawnmower.

The cats haven’t completely accepted him yet. They don’t run away quite as fast, and they hang out with us in the evening –staring at him. I feel bad, because he misses his cats and he’d love to play with mine and they’re still like, “Stay over there, Stranger.” But at least they’re not hiding. That’s a good first step.

He’ll probably wake up with them draped over him the day he has to go home! Cats.

Off to comment on exercises and respond to discussion comments on the classes. I was a little irate early in the day yesterday when a few of the students whined about wanting more time for the first exercise. It’s 750-1000 words. I do that every day before breakfast. 48 hours is more than enough time for the first assignment. Put butt in chair and DO IT. Let’s face it, given more time, most of them would wait until the last minute anyway.

I need to stash some boxes today and straighten up for the party, so I’d better get as much done on classwork today as possible before Imp wakes up.

Devon

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Thursday, December 16, 2010
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and cold

I forgot to mention that on Tuesday, I bought and read the first book of Juliet Blackwell’s new series, entitled IF WALLS COULD TALK. Like the Witchcraft mysteries, it takes place in San Francisco, but this one involves home renovations and the protagonist’s burgeoning ability to sense spirits. I enjoyed it, but Lily Ivory is still one of my favorite protagonists.

Checking my online banking stuff, it seems I have a credit card payment due on the 20th, although I have yet to receive a statement and there’s no minimum payment listed. Why am I not surprised? Anyway, I shot them an on-line bill pay for what I’m sure is far more than the minimum, but at least they get a wad of cash before the due date. And I still don’t have a valid pin number. Not happy with Citizens Bank at all.

The owner stopped by with an additional CO detector that does digital readings, and we’ve put it in my room. As long as it keeps reading 0, I remain a happy camper. He’s also delighted with the way we’ve furnished and decorated, and says it feels like a happy house again. It is (except for the whole poisoning thing).

There was some kerflamma with the stove repair place, but the guy showed up, took the stove apart, tested everything, and swears it’s working perfectly.

So the cause of the CO is still a mystery. The owner is going to get someone to come and check the furnace and clean it out (even though it’s clean), just to make sure.

Worked on my article. The draft meanders quite a bit, and tries to cover a lot of ground, so now it’s about focus, focus, focus. Winnowing down all the great information from my sources while still keeping the context true to the sources’ answers.

Violet likes to sit on my lap and edit while I work, so I’m constantly having to remove her “changes” to the manuscript. For someone with paws, she’s pretty agile when it comes to typing.

Ran some errands, including going to Lavender Moon to pick up a few things (l always walk out with more than I intended, but the quality if lovely). I can’t wait to take Costume Imp there! Drove to Brewster to the museum to see if we could find some stuff to bring the kids when we go to Maine on Christmas Day, but we arrived fifteen minutes before the store shut, and I couldn’t really SEE anything in that time pressure.

Home, eggnog around the tree, tested the stove, nothing went off, so I guess it’s all good, but it’ll take me awhile to feel comfortable with it again. Wrapped presents in the evening — I need a couple more padded envelopes for the last two gifts, but the rest can go out today.

Got a call back from the recommended insurance broker, but, of course, I’d left my phone on the desk while I was running errands. i will call her back today and try to get an appointment sorted out. Also got more information on the doctors for my mom, so I’ve got to see if I can get her in for an appointment in the next few weeks.

My MA driver’s license arrived! Okay, so it’s the worst photo I’ve ever taken in my life, but still, I don’t have to worry about ripping the temporary license, I have the real one. I’m now legitimate in the state. And registered to vote. Guarantee I’m called for jury duty by February.

Smudged the whole house with a combination of sage, clove, and peppermint, to get the last of the icky crap out after the CO scare. The whole house smells yummy. Forgot to mention on that on Sunday, I put together the sachets for the closet — rose, cedar, rosemary, lavender, and jasmine flower. I had enough for the interior closets; I’ll have to get more herbs and make some more for the four large closets in the storage room.

Trying to sort out the writing projects and prioritize them for next year. Spoke to my administrator about putting up the first lectures/exercises for my two January workshops early because I’m on the road on Jan. 2 & 3, and the workshops both start on the 3rd. I want to make sure I have the Welcome message and first lectures/assignments up earlier rather than later. I also have to get my new brochures done, and probably get a PO box in the area as my official business address for Fearless Ink.

Today contains more work on the article, gently reminding anyone who hasn’t returned the questionnaires (the business freelancers all returned theirs early; some of the novelists need prodding. Interesting). I need to take care of some unpleasant correspondence dealing with lingering issues from the previous home base, set up appointments here and yes, there are yet more errands. I realized I’d totally forgotten about the two prints I bought for my mom and have to get frames, and I want to get hurricane sleeves for some of the candles here before the party so no one catches any fabric as they brush past. I’m also going to continue preparing the workshops.

I sent Costume Imp the invitation, and, if he likes it,I’ll print them and get them out. I’m going to add an additional line stating that there are cats in the house, so if you’re allergic — take Sudafed. Because that’s the reality.

Read through a publication I’m considering pitching to, but I don’t think I’m quite the right fit for it. I wrote for similar publications for this company for many years, but this seems very simplistic, almost by-the-numbers, and it feels wrong. Of course, considering the many frustrations I went through with the company over the years and my concern about some of the directions they’re taking, I shouldn’t be surprised. I have to think about it. I wrote for them for so many years, it’s more of feeling secure with the devil you know than anything else, I think. Which is not the best choice for a career.

I really want to try a class at the yoga center nearby, but haven’t had the chance so to do. I don’t want to just sign up for a 20-class pass without actually experiencing a class.

Back to the page.

Devon

Monday, November 29, 2010

Monday, November 29, 2010
Waning Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Busy weekend, but really good.

Made those Martha Stewart banana-walnut chocolate-chunk goodies. Oh, my goodness — one of the best cookies ever! Totally loved them. They are now my second-favorite cookie recipe, behind my favorite molasses spice.

The owl program at the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History was amazing. I didn’t realize that screech owls and saw-whet owls were so tiny! So cute, especially the saw-whet. The barred owl was lovely. I absolutely adored the Great Horned Owl — he has no natural predator and he knows it. That was a bird with major ‘tude — he was looking at some of the smaller children like he considered them a tasty snack. So, of course, I adored him. The snowy owl, who’s been with this group since babyhood (owlet-hood?) was a showoff — loved the play the crowd. And the enormous Eurasian Eagle Owl know she was totally gorgeous and just demanded all to adore her. Really, really great program, and I can’t say enough great things about the people in charge. Check out their website for lots more info. I learned a lot, and now I know what to look — and listen for — when it comes to owls.

I sat next to a lovely woman who is part of the Friends program at the Center and gave me information. She said she had to come to this — or else she’d have to rake her yard! I may not join Friends — because my freelance schedule is so transient, I’m leery of initially committing to anything. But I might buy and inscribe a brick in Elsa’s memory for the walkway, and become a member, since I’ll be going to so many of their programs whenever I get the chance.

Their gift shop has gorgeous stuff, most made by local artists. I knocked four people off my Yule list right there!

I was really impressed with the kids — they’re lively, rambunctious, and very, VERY smart. And yet they’re totally well behaved. No screaming, no tantrums, no bad behavior. And they weren’t sticky, thank goodness. Kids come to me as often as dogs do. I’m not a particularly child-friendly person (one reason I chose not to have any), but for some reason, they really like me. I was surprised by how they paid attention and could refer to something at the beginning of the program later on when they asked a question, and how much they remembered. One kid, who couldn’t have been more than six or seven, could identify a Great Horned owl skull from a program he remembered at his school last year. Pretty impressive.

And the stuff they chose to buy was pretty interesting, too. None of this made-in-China plastic crap. They wanted very site-specific toys and books that required imagination. In general, I’ve been very impressed by the local kids, from toddler to teen. Quite different from the Summer Brats, I’m sure, and very different from the horribly behaved, selfish, bored and boring, entitlement-obsessed children in Westchester.

Back to the house too late to rake. Stopped at Trader Joe’s to get a wreath for the front door — everyone else in the neighborhood is decorated, and I feel behind the beat. Unpacked some more boxes — made a good dent in the pile still in the kitchen.

We got the area rugs up for the living room and the back bedroom and cleaned them both. They look great. I didn’t think the one would work in the back bedroom, but it looks great.

Did some work on the lectures.

Went to bed early, and the cats kind of let me sleep. Or maybe I was just so tired I didn’t notice them playing.

I’m still having weird anxiety dreams. They all have to do with being stuck somewhere in NY, in a theatrical situation, on a show without running notes. I’ll get over them eventually, but they’re annoying.

Up at a reasonable hour on Sunday, yoga, meditation, made biscuits for breakfast. Did some more work on the lectures. Read the Sunday papers – -haven’t done that in ages! Lots of good stuff in there.

Went outside and raked for a couple of hours. The raised part of the backyard. It’s only a small section, but it’s a whole section, so I got that feeling of accomplishment.

Had lunch, then ran some errands. Went to Sandwich to the Herb Shop to pick up a few things I needed to make sachets for the closets, and then swung by Lavender Moon to get the necklace with the amber that I looked at last week, but hadn’t bought. I can’t wear it every day, but it will be lovely for special occasions.

Also stopped at the Yoga/Wellness Center just down the street (seriously, I could walk if I wanted to — it would be about 15-20 minutes) to pick up their schedule. Looks like they have yoga classes along the lines of what I’m looking for, meditation group, and even an acupuncturist on staff. I’ll give them a try. I probably won’t start going to class until the New Year, but I’m going to try to get into one of the acupuncture sessions. My hip is really bothering me again.

Back to the house, and back to raking. I did some more in the backyard. Doesn’t it look better?


And I met the neighbor across the way who has the Scottie and the Westie, both of whom are rescues. The Westie is just a little love bug. But then, they know a soft touch when they see one. Basically, everyone up and down the street takes in rescues — the neighbor across the street only has two; most have three or more. Fine with me — the more happy animals around, the better. And I’m invited to an open house to meet the neighbors in two weeks!

And here’s what’s left for me to do in the back in the next couple of days:

I still have to tidy up the front before the rains hit Tuesday night.

Once I was done raking for the day, I started with the Yuletide decorations. I still can’t find a bunch of stuff, and I’m sure we’ll be rearranging things as we go, but I got part of the advent table up (enough to light the candle for the First of Advent, which is what yesterday was). The mirror’s not yet up over the fireplace, but I kind of like having all the nutcrackers there, and, for now, I have about half the Santas on one bookcase (one of the ones where I can’t find the shelves). I’m kind of at a stopping point until I get the tree up, and then decide what I want to do around that. But, now that I can put up my Very Big Tree — well, it’s an OLD Very Big Tree, and each branch has to be inserted individually, so it will take me three damn days!

I posted my welcome message and the first lecture for the workshop.

Violet is very cuddly lately. She seems to be settling in better than Iris, although Iris brought about five or six toys into the bed overnight. At least it’s not pork bones out of the garbage, which is what Elsa used to do!

Egg on face moment — for some reason, I thought my editor had booked a different article, and that was what I was working on until she straightened me out. NOT the way to impress your boss, right?

Mattress World never called me to give me a window for delivery today, so I will have to get on them about it. I can’t sit around indefinitely waiting for them to show up. Even though I need to spend a good portion of the day raking.

Got my first Yuletide card on Saturday — from the National Marine Life Center. Designed by one of their volunteers, who is seven years old. I’m telling you, the kids here are preternaturally bright. It’s an adorable card. I’m looking forward to putting it up.

And I have to get the overseas cards out this week.

Pretty much all we’ve watched since we got the TV hooked up is WGBH, Boston’s Public Television station. That’s the best on right now. Perhaps we should become members!

Actually stayed up until a reasonable hour, kept working on the lectures.

Up early this morning to find frost on the ground, yoga, meditation, feeding the cats, getting down to work, etc. The other split box is supposed to be delivered today — hope it actually happens — and then I can start really putting the bedroom to rights. I haven’t unpacked/found my sewing boxes yet or my hot glue gun, and there are some ornaments in desperate need of Ornament Hospital. I need to teach, work on some blog posts, and work on the article.

And rake. And unpack. And keep decorating.

No one’s stressed and frantic around here, but an awful lot gets done in a short amount of time. There’s no dithering or procrastination — they just get to it. My kind of place.

Oh, does anyone have any idea what kind of bush this is? It’s in the backyard, with orange berries and pale yellow flowers — a nice late bloomer.

Devon

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Waning Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Cloudy and milder

Yesterday was about unpacking. We rearranged the garage, so now I can get the car into it. I found the big pot, so I can make the beef stroganoff for tomorrow. And, of course, washed it. Ran a long list of errands. It’s interesting how one can get twice the amount done in half the time without anyone getting stressed and surly around here. Everyone is NICE, the clerks and stuff, and it’s an adjustment. I’m used to abrupt and/or surly. I never thought of most of the clerks in NY that way until I got here. And they engage you in actual conversation, not just yammer. The clerks here engage their CUSTOMERS in conversation, not deign to do their jobs while carrying on conversations with co-workers. And everyone is so damn cheerful! It’s an adjustment. A positive one, but an adjustment. I think they’re especially cheerful because the “summah people” are gone.

Anyway, ran the errands, which included buying a large trash can so I can sort the garbage. The can is for the regular garbage — I have crates to sort the recycling. Over the weekend, we’ll have to make our first dump run.

I want to attend a seminar on owls at the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History in Brewster on Saturday. I tried calling to make a reservation; they were closed and one can’t leave a message, so I shot them an email. Hopefully, I can get in.

I also have to race against time in the next few days, to put the yard to bed (and get all the leaves up) before the snow.

Went out again in the afternoon. I bought a rug for my office. It’s gorgeous — gold with sort of a pale lavender grape design. It kind of looks Italianate — very Edith Wharton (if you’ve ever visited the Mount, you know what I mean). When it gets lighter, I’ll take a picture. I love it. It’s not at all what I thought I wanted, but when I saw it, I fell in love with it and knew it was just right. I’m also putting sliders on the furniture, so it doesn’t hurt the wood floors.

I haven’t unpacked my cookbooks yet, so I had to pull a recipe from the Food Network site for the beef stroganoff. Turns out I don’t have any in my handwritten notebook — THAT I have, carried it up early in the process so I could cook up here. But I got in all the stuff for it, and will cook it today, along with brownies and a lemon cake.

The split box is supposed to arrive today. I’m giving it to my mom, and I’ll order another one (hopefully not from Sleepy’s).

Went to Lavender Moon. Found a lovely necklace and a few other things I needed. It’s very simple — no amethyst in the middle, just simple sterling. There was a gorgeous one embellished with brooms and amber, and another mandala necklace — I might just have to go back for those in a few days. Because I wear this every day, I was worried that the raised design on the other two might catch on things. I got a lovely “welcome to the neighborhood” from the owners.

Cooked a lovely dinner – salmon patties, mashed yams, and spinach, with the last of the wonderful apple pie for dessert. Relaxed in front of the TV with a glass of wine, and went to bed at a reasonable hour to read for a bit.

The next assignment for Confidential Job #1 arrived yesterday, so I better get to it, along with polishing the lectures for my class. I’m not quite back into my first 1K of the day yet — I figure I’ll ease back into that over the weekend. The characters are all being very quiet — probably giving me some breathing space to unpack a little more. It will take months to unpack, but we’re slowly getting there. I set up some shelves downstairs so I can store the dishes I don’t need, but still get at them when I want them. I don’t know yet if I should worry because I haven’t heard from my editor on ASSUMPTION OF RIGHT and revisions are due on Jan. 1. If I haven’t heard anything a few days into December, I’ll ask. Meanwhile, I should get back to work on THE SPIRIT REPOSITORY — writing about old-time New York while I’m here on the Cape. Should be interesting. Hope I can locate all my NYC history books.

The cats are exploring and complaining and demanding and playing. I’ll have to get some additional scratching posts in and figure out where they want them. Violet is adjusting better than Iris, which is what I expected, although when she was so terrified at first, I wondered. But she’s back to her usual exploring self, and Iris is being a Drama Queen.

Okay, downstairs to figure out how to shut off the valve for the hose without shutting off the water to the entire damn house.

Devon