Wed. May 13: StayTheFHome Day 49: Creativity and Exhaustion

Wednesday, May 13, 2020
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

I had a new post over on Ink-Dipped Advice, but I took it down because it wasn’t really helpful. I will try to come up with a better one and get it up later today.

Yesterday was an overly-long work day. I am on the edge of burnout. I’m hoping I can make it to the Memorial Day weekend, because I intend to take some time off and do nothing except sit outside and read, and write if I feel like it.

Not only am I working long hours, but the clients for whom I’m working insist that I’m not working, and they resent paying me to do nothing – even when the results are coming in that prove otherwise. So I’m feeling burned out, overworked, underappreciated.

Too bad for me, right? At least I’m still alive.

Yesterday started pretty well, though. I had excellent writing sessions on two different projects, and I’m happy with the way both are going. The band name “Orgasmic Clowns” turned up, and at first, it looked like they would be a part of one of the novels, but now I think I need to make them their own piece.

I got admin work done, some bills paid, put in another Chewy order. I’m frustrated because an order from Target went astray via UPS and neither entity wants to do anything about it. I’m still having Comcast issues, and the only “fix” they provide is something I’ve done before that only makes everything worse.

But at least my stamps arrived, so I can write more cards!

There’s a new logo for the Topic Workbooks, that needs a bit of tweaking, but I like it. Instead of having all the covers uniform with different titles, I’m getting new covers and using the logo at the bottom. Once I have all the covers, I’m going to pull them off Smashwords and put them through Draft2 Digital. I also want a new cover for 30 Tips for 30 Days. I don’t like it.

I have to get some promotional material posted via Tweetdeck and Hootsuite for the books on sale, and I need to finish the Trinity of Teasers free download that I want available in either mid-June or early July.

A writer friend who misses writing in coffee shops set up a bistro table and chairs in her house, and writes there, drinking from her travel mug and playing music. Sometimes she put the TV on in another room to simulate conversation around her. And she’s grateful not to be in a tiny NYC apartment, where her bistro table was once the only table that fit in the place! I love that idea and that image, and may need to use it in a story.

So at least I’m feeling creative, even if I’m exhausted.

I got out five LOIs yesterday, and go responses back on four. All of which have turned me off to the companies, but best to cut it off now than waste time. This idea that I should be willing to trot into an unsafe office full of germy strangers is simply not happening.

Got a lot of client work done on a big project. Will get a little more done today, but it won’t be ready until next week. By tomorrow, I will have used up the allotted time for the week, and I’m not working for free.

Today, I have Remote Chat to look forward to. I had two excellent first writing sessions this morning, on two different novels, and a frustrating computer update on a computer I’ve had less than a week.

Peace, my friends, and be well.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Thursday, December 30, 2010
Waning Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury DIRECT
Sunny and cold

Drove to Wareham and spent my lovely giftcard at Target. Got a bunch of organizational stuff for the house, plus a new thermal carafe coffee-maker (now I don’t have to wrap a dishtowel around the coffeepot to keep it warm), and, on a frivolous note, a new purple cloche hat. I love cloche hats, and it’s really cute!

While we were there, we nipped in to the Michael’s there (much nicer than the one in Hyannis) and to DSW, just because. I fell in love with a pair of unique Liz Claiborne suede flats, but they were a size 8. I wear 8 1/2-9. Of course, they were the only pair in the store. I figured what the heck, I’ll try them on.

They fit PERFECTLY. And were on the clearance rack. And are very, very comfortable. I can wear them with pretty much everything I own.

Stopped at a garden store on the way back, but they didn’t have anything (on sale) that I wanted; stopped at a well-known fruit market, which had some cool stuff, but $1/apple? Really? Uh, not very often. Especially for common varieties.

Iris gave us a big scare because, for a couple of hours, we couldn’t find her. We called and called and tossed the house upside down. We finally found her asleep in the bottom of the laundry basket, under a quilt I haven’t yet put away. Damn cat! Nearly gave us a heart attack!

They run and hide when the door opens, so it’s a pretty good bet they don’t dash out when we’re unloading the car (plus, I usually close the garage door), but one never knows. They’re quick little things, and if one of them slithered out . . .

The Christmas cactus is bursting into white bloom in my writing room, which is lovely.

Today, we have to go to the dump and then go grocery shopping. Word from CT is that the grocery store shelves down there are bare (trucks can’t get in because the snow’s not yet cleared away), so we come bearing supplies. And then I have to stop by the insurance broker’s again — there’s yet more kerflamma with the car insurance — we got a statement from a “group” including our new company that has NOTHING to do with what we agreed on, and is nearly $500 more than I was quoted. No. I don’t care about the details. Make that number go away and change the piece of paper to reflect what we discussed. I don’t care about the details. Do it.

Verizon kept at me yesterday, claiming they were trying to “help” me — of course, for a price. I made it very clear that I know part of their responsibility under law is to protect me from harassment — without extorting me for it. Either they step up, or they, too, will be named in the legal complaint filed. I’m not wasting hours on the phone with them; I’m not paying additional fees. Meet your side of the contract, or I file against you.

My contract with Verizon is up in mid-September of 2011. (Remember when my mother’s phone died and they wouldn’t let me replace it without agreeing to a new two year contract? Shysters). Hopefully, I can buy an iPhone then and just switch everything over to AT&T, or switch to some other provider. Not that I think AT&T is all that great either, but Verizon needs to step up service to keep me as a customer (they already lost my business for landline and internet). I’m sure part of this is that the regulated fees, in general, are cheaper in MA, so my monthly bill is slightly less, so they’re trying to get more money out of me in a different way. And I can’t just add a service for a few months and then cancel it — according to them, it would be part of a new contract and mean extending the current contract, which I’m not going to do.

My back is in very bad shape, mostly because I’m just taking pain block instead of dealing with the problem. But certain things need to be done within a certain time frame, and there’s no one else to do them.

I want to get some writing done today, and finish polishing the Plum lectures. Hopefully, I can post the welcome and first lessons for both workshops today or tomorrow. Since I’ll be offline on the 2nd and most of the 3rd, I want to make sure the students have everything they need to start.

I am so ready for this Mercury Retrograde to be over, I can’t even believe it. But at least I got a pair of great chairs and some other much-needed items for the house out of it!

Devon

Monday, November 8, 2010

Monday, November 8, 2010
Waxing Moon
Uranus Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Venus Retrograde
It’s supposed to be rainy and maybe even snow

Yep, scheduled to post again, because I intend to be back on the road and headed to the house before the sun comes up.

Packing the car with the clothes on Saturday morning was a pain in the patootie, but it all got packed, along with the leftover mirrors and a few other odds and ends, and we were on the road a little before 7, and arrived at the house a little before 11. Not a bad ride, not too much traffic. Unloaded, hung everything up in the respective closets — I’m so happy with my walk-in closet. I’ve got the clothes sorted so it makes sense to me — and not “all colors together” — that simply doesn’t work for me, all I see is blobs. I even have options for the big Thanksgiving dinner, depending on the weather. I’ll make some sachets when we’re up — cedar, rose, and maybe some jasmine flower or lavender — once we’re up there, and hang them from the poles. I actually have two closets in the room — a walk in and another, smaller closet. The closets in the storage area — four big ones — are housing the formal wear (the dresses I wore to opening nights and Tony Award shows, etc. and the rest of the various coats. The ones we use all the time are in the front closet (which is tiny) and the rest are up in the storage room. Eventually, I’ll make muslin bags for the formal wear, because they’ll get dry rot if they stay in the plastic garment bags, and they’ve already been in there far too long.

Imagine how delighted I was to find mail at the house — including a lovely housewarming card and Target gift card! Michelle, Lara, and Colin — thanks! It will go to good use, I promise!

Found the RIGHT leaf bags at Christmas Tree Shops, of all places. Looked for curtain fabric at Jo-Ann’s, but couldn’t find what I wanted. I think I need the furniture in, the slipcovers on, and the carpets down before I can make the fabric decision on the curtains that will best fit the rooms. The temporary ones up now do just fine for the moment. And the pre-made panels I’ve seen thus far just aren’t cutting it. Either the color is off by a few hues, or the texture’s not quite right. Fussy bitch, ain’t I? 😉 Re-stocked some stuff at Trader Joe’s. Bought a SERIOUS rake at Home Depot (look out, leaves) and looked at area rugs — some good possibilities for the writing room and the back bedroom. On to Stop & Shop and some more groceries, over to Verizon to pay the phone bill, Home Goods to look at slipcovers (which they don’t have at that one, for some reason)– but saw some other good rug possibilities, and Shaw’s to pick up the coffee and cookies I like from them. Bought the kidlets a new litter box for the downstairs bathroom — it fits the look of the bathroom and the space.

Cooked a great meal in my wonderful kitchen — pork chops smothered in mushroom gravy, mashed potatoes, and steamed spinach.

I meant to bring the assignment for Confidential Job #1 up and finish it on Saturday night, but somehow, it didn’t make it into the bag. I’ve asked my editor for an extension. I did some other reading in the living room, but went to bed pretty early. The Hounds of the Baskervilles (aka the dogs who live on the property behind mine) were at it again, baying at goodness knows what, AND that house has teenaged boys — not sure if it’s one teenaged boy and his best friend is over all the time, or if it’s brothers — they “just happen” to go out and toss a football or frisbee back and forth whenever I’m puttering around, although they haven’t said anything yet. I just sort of wave, smile, and say hi, but haven’t really introduced myself to anyone yet. The West Highland Terrier’s person across the street seems nice (she was out raking the other day), but then, she DOES have a Westie, so she’s likely a kindred spirit. The Westie’s bed is in the bay window, so he takes note of our comings and goings. The retired guy next door with the pristine lawn has ALL his leaves done, even the back yard. As intimidating as having The Perfect Lawn next door, I do admire his love for his yard, and hope to learn a lot from him.

Everyone in the neighborhood will get a holiday cookie platter, so they’ll know who I am soon enough. I think they’re perplexed at the odd hours and erratic schedule. They will all pass out when two massive moving trucks pull up in front of the house in a couple of weeks!

Too cold and late to rake when I got back (but at least I now have the right tools). Pretty much everyone on the street is out raking, so I guess I’ll have to go out and do some more this afternoon. The backyard will take me about a week!

I love “falling back” timewise, and enjoyed the extra hour of sleep. Up early anyway, yoga, meditation, baked cinnamon rolls for breakfast. We were on the road by 7, back in NY around 11. Traffic wasn’t bad until New Haven — from New Haven to NY, it was all the pokies who only drive on Sundays and think 40 mph is acceptable highway speed.

On the agenda for Sunday afternoon: repainting the damaged windowsills, taking down the curtains and the hardware, washing the curtains (except for the one going to the lab for testing), packing more boxes, and some suitcases. More clothes going up tomorrow (stuff from the drawers), along with more foodstuff, bathroom stuff, and miscellaneous other stuff I don’t want the movers handling.

Teresa, I told the cats what Ivy said. Iris figures, “Okay”, but Violet still is skeptical. I think they will be really happy once we’re up there. Moving Day will be a challenge — a very long day and then driving at night (I don’t have good night vision and hate driving at night) when I’m already exhausted, but once we’re there, and once the movers have come and gone the next day, all will be good.

I just have to keep it together for another nearly two weeks. Ten more days until the big M-Day.

I miss my daily writing sessions, though. It’s starting to pull at me again. I look forward to getting back into that routine.

Devon

Thursday, January 7, 2010


Elsa

Thursday, January 7, 2010
Waning Moon
Mars Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Gee, we’re supposed to get all the way up to 30 degrees (F) today! Shall I put on my shorts? 😉 And then we get snow tonight and it stays in the teens for the forseeable future.

Which means I have to get off my ass and get to Target today if I expect to get enough bins ton finish packing up the decorations.

I packed decorations for 10 hours yesterday, and I’m still not done. The hallway is almost impassible with the boxes I’m going to take to storage and I need more bins to re-organized some stuff like ribbons and wrapping paper and the special fabrics that come out for the holidays. I have a bin with seasonal fabric, so I can change things out every few weeks, but during the Yutetide season pretty much everything is draped and swagged (Violet keeps moving because she’s afraid I’ll swag HER if she sits still), so that fabric needs its own bin.

One would think everything would look clean and shiny with the bulk of the decorations packed, but it looks lonely and chaotic! Well, when everything’s put away and I rearrange a few things. . .

I finished the snowflake wreath (with Elsa’s help), and hung it up, taking down the evergreen spray. Taking down the spray and the bark basket with the evergreen display on the coffee table reminded me why I switched to an artificial tree. Although the little one I’ve got (the one in storage that’s eight feet tall and eight feet wide doesn’t fit in this apartment) has just about had it. It served well for 18 years, but it is falling apart, so next year, I might have to get another one.

I spent quite a a bit of time vacuuming up needles. Everything smells great and piney and fresh, though, from it.

The little live Spruce I’ve got in the bedroom window’s doing well, though, and I hope to keep it alive so that I can plant it in my garden once I move!

Elsa’s doing better. The antibiotics are helping. She’s had this respiratory problem on and off for about a year. I’m pretty sure it’s tied in with the various projects the scumbag landlords keep doing around the place – -the stuff that’s turned a charming, 1920’s building into a place that looks like it rents by the hour, instead of doing things like giving us regular hot water and enough recycling bins. To their credit, though, during this arctic snap, they’ve given us steady heat. The hot water’s still hit and miss, but the heat’s been on.

The bloodwork results basically don’t tell them anything. Elsa’s in good shape, but with a slightly elevated white blood count, which could mean infection, allergy, or asthma. It doesn’t seem to be high enough to warrant anything scary.

Tired, tired, tired, but I’m going to spend a few hours at the page this morning, then head out. I’ve got to take a load of stuff to storage, get to Target (and maybe Home Goods, since they’re in the same direction), and then circle back and go to my friend’s place to do laundry. Or maybe I’ll just to to White Plains first and then come back to pick up the laundry and my computer, so I don’t have all that sitting in my trunk while I shop. I was too tired to do my evening yoga last night (I’m being good about the morning practice, though, every day), but I’m going to try to do my weights workout tonight. Monday’s felt really good (yes, I’m still a little sore), so I want to keep the momentum.

It’s against the law around here to text while driving, AND to talk on a cell phone while driving, but it’s not enforced nearly harshly enough.

Back to the page — I don’t want to lose the momentum with the steampunk.

Devon

Published in: on January 7, 2010 at 8:13 am  Comments (5)  
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Sunday, December 13, 2009


Elsa thinks decorating is exhausting!

Sunday, December 13, 2009
Waning Moon
Sleet and cold

We’ve had heat the past few days (amazing, the super goes away, there’s a substitute, and we have heat. Unfortunately, there’s no hot water this morning. Urgh.

Yesterday was a pretty decent day. Got a lot of errands done, including dropping stuff off where my Mom is staying, going to Michael’s yet again, going to White Plains. I wanted to get something for my cousin’s son at the Metropolitan Museum of Art store, which had an outpost in WP in Spring — and has since closed. I had a fit. I’d parked at the Target complex and sprinted the X blocks to the other mall (with the really expensive parking in the really scary lot, which is why I parked at Target), only to find no store.

Most people seem to be panic-shopping. Inventories are low, lots of empty shelves, and people are grabbing whatever’s there. Uh, no thanks. I went into one store, asked for something I wanted, and the sales person said, “Well, we don’t have that, so you’ll just have to settle for something else.”

My response? “No, actually, I’ll go spend my money somewhere else. Buh-bye” and walked out.

Restoration Hardware’s keeping their shelves stocked — the store looks gorgeous. They also had the most business — the line wound all around the store, and they’re being really NICE to their customers — and customers are buying.

Sprinted back to Target, ran into Target, picked up two things I needed, and dashed through the express check out. I managed to get into my car and pull out of my spot on the moment my meter ran out. Phew!

I was going to go to Home Goods, since I was already all the way in White Plains, but couldn’t face it.

Ran some more errands, including to the liquor store. Stopped into AI Friedman’s, which is gorgeous. They didn’t have what I needed today, but I’ll definitely hit the after-Christmas clearance. Michael’s is just letting the empty shelves sit, which looks awful, and putting up a few Valentine’s Day things. Uh, no. Even the most dedicated crafters I know are still trying to make Christmas happen.

Went to Home Depot, wondering if I should buy another artificial tree to replace the little one we have. It’s looking a bit sad, both listing and listless. I have a huge tree in storage, but it’s 8 feet tall AND 8 feet wide, and there’s just no room in the apartment for it. The trees that would fit in the space look as sad as the one we’ve got.

I stood there, feeling a bit overwhelmed, and this little girl (about 3 or 4) walks up to me. She’s sucking a lollipop. She pulls it out of her mouth and says, “You look sad. Would you like some of my lollipop? It’s cherry.”

Her father is with her, dying a million deaths.

I couldn’t help but laugh. I thanked her and said, no, but I’d had a long day, and now it was much better. I wound up going to the garden section and buying a basket of decorated greenery and a two foot live tree in a pot (the latter was less than $8!) and haulign them home. The little tree fits in the window, and I put some tiny decorations on it. The basket is on the coffee table.

It was around 2:30 before I could even start the decorating. There’s a lot half done, all the ornaments I brought in from storage are out of boxes, although not necessarily in their final spots. I have to bring the empty boxes back to storage this morning, because there’s no place to put anything with all the boxes. But what’s up looks pretty darned cute. I will post pictures over the coming days.

At 1:30 this morning, Iris stepped on my EYE and launched with her back foot on a jump. Do you have any idea how much that hurts? There was no blood, but it really, really hurts. I’m using the rest of the eye drops I bought in Prague. If it seems infected or there’s any change in vision, I’ll go to the eye doctor. I’m hoping I’ll just be sore and uncomfortable for a few days.

Good writing session this morning, off to storage now, and then yet ANOTHER stop at Michael’s for one more garland (if they have it) and some floral wire. I’ve been using ornament hangers wound together — just break down and get the floral wire, already! I had to buy wire cutters when I disconnected the old land line. The right tools make all the difference.

The cats love the new faux “sofa” I built out of boxes of stuff I can’t yet put in storage because it needs to be sorted. I covered the contraption with festive fabric and lots of pillows. All three cats have their favorite spots, although Violet also likes to sleep in the chair covered in a fleece throw where one of the stuffed reindeer currently resides.

More eyedrops, then off to storage before the sleet gets any nastier.

I thought Christmas was THIS week, but it’s NEXT week — gives me another day or two to get out the cards.

Have a great Sunday!

Devon

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Saturday, December 5, 2009
Waning Moon
Uranus Retrograde
About to snow/cold
St. Nicholas Eve

Yes, we’re supposed to get snow today. Woo-hoo! That puts me in the holiday spirit, although I’m not going to go to storage and haul out my stuff and get it all wet. Not that there’s room for it anyway — I still don’t have the apartment completely sorted out, although I got a lot done yesterday and we’re getting there.

Had some ginger in the morning for the nausea and celery for the headache and felt human again. Had to run some errands — couldn’t find what I needed locally, so wound up at Target in White Plains — I’ve been to WP every day this week, it’s ridiculous. And here I’m trying to plan the errands so I’m not dashing all over creation! But Target had what I needed and more, so I got a lot done. Got done everything I needed at the bookstore — which is closing in January, which totally sucks. I mean, it wasn’t a great one, but still . . .

Realized I was running a fever, so I went home, rested up a bit, took whatever supplements I’m not allergic to that could pound out whatever’s trying to take me down,and got back to work. I got a lot done, sorting, purging, organzing. I’m trying to find a place for everything, and if I can’t, it either gets given away or goes to storage. The challenge is then keeping storage organized enough so I can get at things as I need them.

I’m purging a lot of clothes that either don’t fit properly and aren’t worth the alterations, or just don’t suit the way my style has evolved. I found two coats that were in storage for years and took them downstairs to the new cleaners that opened up — they are so nice! Lovely people. I considered buying a new dressy winter coat this year, but the one in storage is lovely — really well cut, full-length, navy blue — and my black pea coat, that I bought way back in college in Greenwich Village when I was caught in a snowstorm without a coat — will be fine once it’s cleaned and I put the silver buttons back on (I’d lent it to a show and took my good buttons off so they wouldn’t get lost). I also found an almost-finished dress in one of my favorite styles — very simple, tailored, slight flare below the knee. All it needs is the finishing on the hem, the neckline, and the armholes, and I can wear it in spring. It’s a lovely soft pattern in blues and grays and greens with just a hint of burgundy in it. I love shopping in my closet!

I’m putting together several bags of clothes I will then sort into stuff that gets donated and stuff that goes to a local consignment store. I’ve got some beautiful theatrical pieces like a beaded formal skirt (given as a Secret Santa gift that’s never fit me) which are nearly new, tried on but never worn, and someone could enjoy them.

I’ve sorted out a lot of my books and reconfigured the bookcases. So why do I STILL have piles of books on the floor with no place to put them? Unfortunately, a lot of them are in use in various projects.

Started work on Confidential Job #1, which seems like it’ll be really cool. Got some decorating ideas that I will start this weekend, and then, as I can bring stuff in from storage, I can add to it. I’m finding some great fabric as I’m going through packed stuff, and I’m sorting the fabric and the yarn and all the rest so I know where everything is, can complete any uncompleted projects, and actually get at everything.

The fever broke at some point in the night, so I’m feeling much better. I did an extra-challenging yoga session in the morning — swore somewhat during the process, but feel better now. I’ve got a bunch of errands to do before the snow starts, and then it’s back to trying to sort out the apartment.

I’ve got the menus for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day sorted,and I’m trying to figure out what to do for the Solstice.

I had a good writing session this morning; feels good after two days away from the page. I get cranky and more neurotic than usual if I skip a day or several days of writing. Everything is on track, writing wise, although I’m not spending as many hours at the page as usual. But, even if I can snatch a half hour here and there, I sit down and I focus and I DO IT. Every few words on the page is a few more than I had before, and it’ amazing what you can get done in 15 minutes if you don’t procrastinate and keep saying, “Oh, it’s only 15 minutes, what can I do?” You can write a bunch of words, that’s what you can do.

Tonight, we put out our shoes, in the Dutch (?) tradition, and St. Nicholas comes and fills them with treats (unless the cats get there first).

Have a great weekend!

Devon

Published in: on December 5, 2009 at 8:44 am  Comments (9)  
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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Cloudy, hot, humid

Okay. I’m officially exhausted.

Got home yesterday — it was very temperate in the apartment. I turned on all the fans to get it as cool as possible while I was there, spent time on the internet downloading and sending out things that needed to be sent. I also did a back-up — which took longer than I hoped, because it was the first time Time Machine met the new hard disk, and they had to get acquainted. Still, it took less than an hour (an ounce of prevention, and all that), which is much better than the PC’s 56-hour back-up time!

Went to Verizon, Throwing the phones was definitely a viable option. They couldn’t/wouldn’t even test my mother’s phone to see what was wrong with it, because it was more than two years old. WTF?????? I had to BUY a new phone. Not happy, especially since, two weeks ago, on the phone they said I could simply trade it in for the one I got, which is specially featured for seniors, with large keys and displays. Heaven forbid anyone at the store is “able” (yeah, right) to confirm this promise with anyone at the call center — even though I have the person’s name who made the promise. Liars and thieves, the lot of them. And now I’m stuck in a new two year contract, or I couldn’t get a new phone, and my elderly mother would have been put into danger by not being able to call for help, should something go wrong. They also swore up, down, and sideways, when I tried to find a better-priced plan to meet my needs better (as in, add in text and email) that such a plan doesn’t exist — even though it does, according to billshrink.com. The only plans that include what I need, are, of course, quite a bit more expensive than what I pay now. Which is typical of Verizon. They charge you to breathe. Just because I’m saving money by getting away from Verizon for landline, cable, and internet — I’m not giving them all that savings for a new phone plan. The personnel are perfectly pleasant, but the company does not give them what they need to actually provide customer service.

I didn’t even bother to try to upgrade my phone. If my poor little old phone can limp along another two years, I’ll simply get iPhones, even it means switching to AT&T.

And now they want me to fill out a customer satisfaction survey. Are they serious? Face it, would YOU want to be the one reading that particular survey?

Never made it to Target, because I had to get back to work. Dropped off my mom’s phone, and had to go back later in the evening to set it up.

Worked, went over and set up my mom’s phone, and had to do an evening event for work. Totally wiped out. The heat and humidity don’t help, either.

Slept well, though, and had a good morning yoga session. A good, long yoga session in the morning helps my posture and helps keep me in alignment far into the day.

Did some work on both “Personal Revolution” and “Amends” this morning.

Heading out — hope to make it to Target this morning on my way to feed the cats, check a few things online at home, and then get back here EARLY this time for a productive day on site.

Devon

Published in: on August 11, 2009 at 10:07 am  Comments (4)  
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Monday, July 27, 2009

Monday, July 27, 2009
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Cloudy, rainy, hot, humid

I had the best time on Kim Smith’s radio show yesterday afternoon. We talked about a wide range of subjects. If you didn’t get a chance to listen in real time, you can listen at your leisure here.

Busy day. Wrote a lot in the morning. Read quite a bit in the afternoon — a new-to-me book on oil blends,which gives me a lot of ideas. And then I read a novel, a mystery and pseudo-ghost story. I really liked the first two thirds of it. However, then I got ahead of the protag and got impatient with him, and the ending was too fast and left too many loose ends. Ultimately, it was unsatisfying. It was a a stylistic experiment which didn’t quite work, in my opinion.

Went to Target. Bought more bins on sale. Also bought the cat toy Brandy talked about in her blog. All three cats are absolutely wild about it. It’s hilarious. I told them their “Auntie Brandy” recommended it. They’re not quite sure who Auntie Brandy is yet, but they’ll meet her someday, I hope.

I also had an interesting encounter in the checkout line at Target. The woman in line ahead of me had an overflowing cart and a toddler belted into the seat. She was struggling with her packages and her purse and everything else, completely overwhelmed. The toddler, with more dexterity than most adults I know, unsnapped the safety belt, stood up in the seat, and launched himself over the handlebars of the cart.

I stepped forward and caught him.

He thought it was the Best Game Ever.

I put him back into his seat and fastened the belt with one of my Magic Knots. When I was little, my dad wanted me to learn how to tie nautical knots. He bought me instructions and rope and I was supposed to spend time every day practicing. I was like six or seven at the time. I HATED it.

So I made up my own knots.

I used one of those knots to secure him back into the cart. He was wearing little khaki cargo pants, cute as can be, and the pockets were full of little games and toys. He had to take out every single one and show me.

I asked him how old he was, and his mother said, “Two.”

He frowned at her and said, “Two years, four months, and thirteen days.”

I stared at him, because two year olds aren’t usually that dexterous or that articulate, and he said, “I REALLY wanna be THREE.”

I was good. I didn’t laugh.

HIs mom finished paying and packing and I undid the knot so she could actually get him out of the cart and into the car seat. He grabbed a box of Cheerios and opened it (with a lot less trouble than I have opening a box of cereal). His mother took it away and said, “We’re not eating cereal now. We’re going to have a real lunch.”

He looked at me and said, “I think you need to come home with us and read books to me.”

It was very cute. That mother’s got her hands full — he’s smart as a whip, and I bet he’ll invent something really amazing when he’s a little older. Like seven.

I had a decent but not great writing session this morning on the story. I have to do some research — finding a word that spells one thing going in one direction and another going backwards. It’s a plot point, so I have to get it right.

I’ve got a bunch of correspondence and business to take care of, and then I hope to get in another writing session. I’m going to try to pack a bit today. I’m also doing the final prep for tomorrow morning’s interviews up county and tonight I’m attending a holistic seminar about two towns over.

My wrist still hurts like heck. The only yoga pose that bothers it is the “bound hands” pose, where you interlace your fingers and raise your arms over your head. Downward dog, plank, the ones you’d THINK would hurt — they’re fine. But a simple overhead stretch isn’t.

Back to the page.

Devon

Published in: on July 27, 2009 at 8:38 am  Comments (5)  
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Sunday, July 26, 2009

Sunday, July 26, 2009
Waxing Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Rainy and humid

The lovely and talented Kim Smith is hosting me today on her BlogTalk radio show at 4 PM EST to talk about DIXIE DUST RUMORS:
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/kims

We’re finally getting some summer heat and humidity, but it’s still not too bad and I still haven’t put in the air conditioner. Not that I could lift it to put it in until the wrist heals anyway.

Yesterday wound up being more of a reading day than a writing day, which was fine. I trundled my package off to the post office. I’d brought tape and markers and all that because I had to buy the envelope and pack it there. So I’m taping my envelope shut when this chickie snatches the tape OUT OF MY HAND and walks off with it! If she’d asked to use it, I would have said fine, but to walk up to me and take it out of my hands when I’m using it — sorry, I”m far too much of a territorial only child to put up with that! So I followed her and took it back, and I told her that it was my personal tape (the post office now charges if they give you a piece of tape, which is probably why she took mine) and if she’d asked, I would have shared, but not under these circumstances.

She gets all pouty — well, as much as the Botox would let her move her facial muscles, and said, “You don’t have to be such a bitch.”

I just smiled and said, “Sweetie, you really don’t want to me around me when I’m a bitch. This is me being nice!”

I swear, the stupidity quotient around here is rising exponentially!

Anyway, I read a lot, took a nap in the afternoon (I had a good old-fashioned “tummy ache” for some reason), and roughed out three short stories that I hope will fall into the 3000 word range. Two of them are for an anthology, whose deadline is coming up quickly, and for which I was just recommended. The third is for another publication for which I’ve wanted to write for awhile, but haven’t figured out what to do for them yet, and which was inspired by a road rage incident in which I chose not to engage on Friday.

This morning, I wrote 1200 words on one of the stories (a comic mystery) and outlined a fourth piece, which I hope will come in at 2500 words, because I want to serialize over five months in the newsletter. Yes, Michelle, I got the idea from you!

The wrist is actually worse today for some reason, even though I rested, iced it, wrapped it, and babied it yesterday. Go figure. It’s not the sharp, shooting pain now, just a steady dull throb. Um, is that supposed to be an improvement?

Brandy, if you can find a good place that doesn’t charge too much to replace the springs, that’s one option. Or you can get a board cut to size that fits OVER the offending springs. You can either keep it as a separate underneath piece and make a new cushion with a combination of foam and batting and then make a cover for it, or you can put the board within the cushion itself and place the foam and batting on top of it. The former will make cleaning/washing easier, because if you use the second option, you’ll have to fasten it in a way that you can unfasten it in order to remove the board before washing. As long as the edges of the board are sanded and there’s a little trim on the bottom of the cushion to hide the board, you should be fine. Because I’m so close to NYC, the pros who do things like fix springs and reupholster are out of my price range — at least the ones who do the quality of work I want. It might be more reasonable in your area.

Regarding Verizon, Brandy, thank you for asking Chris about it, I totally appreciate it. The doctor’s office swears that no one there did any forwarding — all of a sudden in the afternoon, the calls simply stopped coming in to them, and switched to me. They checked with their answering service, who promises they didn’t do anything either. I think Verizon needs to do some line-checking. The calls have stopped coming to us — at least for now — but aren’t back to normal at the office, so someone else must be going through the same thing now. Somewhere, a line’s getting crossed or some electronic something is miscommunicating with something else. Maybe if the doctor’s office calls in a tech, they can figure it out. Thanks for the heads-up about the stores — I’m being really careful about which ones I go to. I need a phone upgrade and I need to adjust my plan, because the one I’m on isn’t meeting my needs, and I have to find one of the good stores who’s willing to take the time and cut the smarmy sales talk. The minute my eyes start to cross because of the double-talk – it’s time to go! 😉

Target discounted the big bins yet again and I need some more, so guess where I’m headed? Ooh, shiny . . .

I had a good yoga session this morning. The YOGA JOURNAL DVDs are great when I get up early enough so I don’t feel rushed. It’s silly — I make my own schedule, I should never feel rushed — but there are days when I do and that sort of works against the whole “mindfulness” principle of the practice!

Devon

Published in: on July 26, 2009 at 8:38 am  Comments (3)  
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Thursday, July 9, 2009

Thursday, July 9, 2009
Waning Moon
Pluto Retrograde
Jupiter Retrograde
Sunny and pleasant

Really good day working in the storage unit yesterday. I moved about 40 boxes of dishes and over 100 boxes of books — and still can’t find the two books I really need! Today, I just have to move out the annoying little stuff in odd shapes and figure out how to stash it, and the units are consolidated. Even better, there’s room to maneuver in the big unit. Since I plan to load a bunch of stuff in from the apartment to get some breathing space, that’s a good thing.

In the afternoon, we went over to Target and bought bins — 4 extra large and two little — all I could fit into the back of the car, so I can start packing stuff up in the apartment this weekend that I want to haul to storage.

Worked on client projects in the afternoon, too. I’m going to send off a couple late this afternoon, and get an extension on the project for Confidential Job #1 until tomorrow.

Another lousy writing session this morning. It’s just going to be tough until it’s not. And I just have to keep at it.

IMG_0576
I think I have to take Violet to the vet I think she’s got a respiratory infection now — it’s as though she’s trying to sneeze, but it doesn’t come out. I’ll watch her for another day — maybe it’s the dust I’m bringing back from working in the unit and moving all that stuff up from the city, where it sat for years — I know I’m coughing and sneezing and my eyes are itchy. And, of course, the never-ending construction in the building that they’re trying to make the tenants pay for, even though ti’s for fantasy future tenants and doesn’t benefit us. It’ll be a challenge to give her medication. Elsa considers medication “treats”; Violet is convinced I’m trying to murder her. I don’t know why she’s so upset about it; it’s not like anything bad ever happened in her little kitty life since I got her, and she was only 4 weeks old when I got her and her sister; I hand-raised them. But she firmly believes medicine is awful and fights like crazy. Fortunately, this will be only the second time in her nine years she’s ever needed any. Poor Violet!

Back to finish the storage unit and then work on client projects. Got a few bills to pay, too. I’m hoping I can settle into a more productive writing routine next week.

Sorry I don’t have more of interest to talk about, especially on the writing front! Hopefully, that will change soon!

Devon

Published in: on July 9, 2009 at 6:22 am  Comments (3)  
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Sunday, April 26, 2009

Sunday, April 26, 2009
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Sunny and HOT!

It’s supposed to be 90 degrees today. Ick!

So, yesterday I had the best day because I only worked on the Mac. Today, I had to turn on the PC, and it was a nightmare. Two hours to boot up, three computer crashes and two keyboard failures all before 9 AM. I can’t wait until I’ve pulled everything I need off that hunk of junk and only work on the Mac.

Yesterday morning, what usually takes me two hours to accomplish took a mere 40 minutes — because I’m on a computer that actually works. Today, I’m back in nightmare land (I’m typing this on the Mac on my lap while waiting for the PC to pretend to boot up for the fourth time now).

I went back to the Apple store to invest in Office. I have to be able to work in Word, both on some of my own stuff and on material that’s sent for editing. It was worth the price. I also got questions answered about some stuff I need the programs to do, and I knew the computer has the ability, but don’t know how to ask it to do it. Some of the questions the techs didn’t know, either, so at one point, I had three techs with me and we figured it out. It was like going on a technological treasure hunt together. It was fun.

Popped over to Target to pick up a few things. Headed to Costco. Got a card and brought back my first haul. It was all stuff we use all the time. I sat down and compared expenses. I want to make sure it’s actually worth the price, and I also want to make sure I don’t buy stuff just because it’s there. So far, on my first day, I saved $117, including the price of the card. Not bad.

My only indulgence as a case of Izze water (I love Izze water and it’s hard to find around here) and an enormous lemon blueberry coffee cake.

Today, I have to catch up on practicalities, run a few more errands, and get some writing done. I had a great writing session this morning though.

It will be a nightmare, pulling everything off the old computer and moving all the floppy files to flash drives. In the end, it will be worth it, but every time I have to turn on the old computer, I should probably take a tranquilizer.

Back to the page.

Devon

Published in: on April 26, 2009 at 8:05 am  Comments (2)  
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