Saturday, August 27, 2005

March 13, 2005

Long time, no post!
Ack, my critique partner told me that I've not updated for a bit - which is true. There are a couple things I've wanted to post about, but haven't had time. The past three weeks have been hard work weeks - Big Boss came down while MEB was on vacation and I learned a lot. My boss is really good. Really. I can tell he was trained by Big Boss - they both think the same way. It was a little disconcerting at times because Big Boss sounded almost as if he channeled MEB a couple times. Anyway, changes are being instituted and Big Boss dragged me kicking and screaming through some of it, including a new style of data entry and all. I also did hotshots and routes with him. Needless to say, although it was very educational, it was also exhausting! I dragged home most nights around 6:30-7 pm and barely wolfed something for dinner before falling into bed. The exhaustion makes me think I'm back to being anemic...sigh. A couple weeks ago, an online friend came to visit. I had checked out a little Schipperke/Jack Russell Terrier at our shelter for her. After we IMed for a while on what he was like, Amy made the decision to come down and get him. She brought both her boys and stayed overnight. OMG. We had so much in common and laughed till our sides hurt far into the night. The boys were adorable and let me in on a few of their fun times (a game they invented called Garbage Monster, LOL). Brian and Gavin named the new dog Dolan, after Dolan Falls up in North Texas somewhere. Their other dog is named after the Pecos River, so it sort of fits. The kitchen cupboards are finally done. Richard had to prime the last set and then we ran out of paint and had to go get more. The kitchen now looks bright, sunny and cheerful. I looked around and thought that even with that, it needs a touch of...something. I decided to pull out all my blue and yellow fabrics and make a quilted counter runner and some pot holders or something. Sadly, I had so little yellow, I had to go buy fabric LOL. I've still not decided on exactly what I'll do, but there'll be cloth involved. Richard went to DC for a few days for his conference and while he was gone, I loaded everything back into the cupboards and put all the knobs and drawer handles back on.Jenny is now at Mom's. She left Leslie's last week and was supposed to caravan with my brother. She went to spend a few days with him in Ohio and he got called to the dock for a load going to St. Louis. She headed out that evening and was to meet him an hour down the road, but he called and had been diverted to Baltimore! She drove on by herself and I called around 5:30 am to see where she was...she'd stopped to get some sleep outside St. Louis. Mom called me at work when she finally arrived. They are having a good time. Pa and Jenn went out exploring caves and such, Pa recently found an arrowhead after 4 years of hunting...and Jenny found 2 within five minutes of being there! She also found THE furniture she wants. I'm not sure what will be happening but apparently when she gets to work and has paid off her bills, she will be returning to buy and cart it back to her new apartment. On Tuesday, she will be going to spend a few days with my sister before coming here to pack out and head off to her new home and job. Flint and Echo are enjoying the warmer weather. Echo spends as much time outside as we will let her have. I need to get them vaccinated, all their shots are coming due soon. I take them with me when I have to return to work to let the bank drivers in and they are getting quite used to that little car trip. The windows going up and down no longer bother them and Echo even sticks her head out to catch the scents on the breeze. At first, other traffic disconcerted them and they were uneasy, but now they're getting used to the sound of the cars and trucks around them. Yesterday, we took them for a ride to pick up Richard's car. I went inside to pay for the repairs and Richard went to look at trucks. 15 minutes later, Flint set off the car alarm, as usual. He HATES waiting and will jump up and beep the horn after a bit. If the doors are locked, this sets off the alarm. Both dogs weren't the least bit intimidated to be inside a screeching car - they know I'll be out quickly when that happens.After we picked up the car, I took off for the nursery to pick up flowers. The petunias were done in by the snow and only a few of the 258 plants survived. I bought impatiens and put them in the flower bed around the fountain. It looks very pretty. We then returned with the 5 dead hollies and the receipt and the nursery graciously replaced them. Sadly, they didn't have any large holly plants so I had to buy smaller ones. The smaller price allowed me to stock up on more impatiens and some geraniums for the pot on the front porch. I also bought a hanging basket of orange impatiens for the back porch. Richard spent the afternoon digging holes and putting in the flowers. The front of the house now looks nice again. I've decided to put some root stimulator down for the bare parts of grass (where the old bushes had overgrown) and I'll fertilize the new plants so they'll grow well. Richard has tomorrow and the next day off because of all his late hours and hard work prior to the conference. He said he'll start tackling the backyard and also give our cars a much needed bath. Mine is especially dirty from construction traffic around town and dog hair in the back seat. Today we grocery-shopped for the first time in ages. I did a small run a few weeks ago, but we needed a lot more. When I got home, I had Richard power up the grill. I marinated several things and cooked a bunch of meat so we could simply thaw and slow cook to warm it up and still have that barbeque taste (in case I work long hours again). A little taste testing of everything was the cook's privilege and as a final cooking event, we had steaks for dinner. A baked potato and corn on the cob finished off the meal. I now have grilled mesquite-marinated chicken, hamburgers, two roasts, and beef souvlaki in the freezer. Richard also grilled his breakfast sausages. I loaded up on red meat because I've not been eating as the doctor ordered which is probably part of why I'm feeling exhausted again. For any vegetarians reading this, I spent about six years being anemic, despite overloading on iron rich vegetables and taking supplements. It was finally discovered that my body doesn't process the iron in either very well. For three years, we tried every supplement on the market. The doctor finally ordered me to eat red meat four times a week (I was pretty much a vegetarian except for the occasional chicken and fish). Three weeks later, the battle ended. My iron count shot way up and I've not been so exhausted since. Until now. The last couple weeks have been hectic and I've managed to only grab a pb and j sandwich for dinner or a piece of chicken. So it was time to shop for the stuff that keeps me healthy. I also bought Leslie, Jenny and Bun-Chu their Easter treats - now they're all grown up, I mail them a chocolate bunny, bunny shaped marshmallows and a pack of Cadbury Eggs every year. Sometimes, I throw in a few little gifts, too. As far as writing, I'm sending out a manuscript to a contest tomorrow, the prize is a reading from five authors who will then determine a winner. The winner will be read by an editor at one of the big publishing houses. I'm also mailing out a short story tomorrow, one that the magazine editor expressed interest in. We'll see how that goes. As it stands, after this three things will be circulating. The book is going well. I've managed to carve writing time in the evenings and it is flowing smoothly. I need to top out at 70,000 words. I can do that easily. I'm planning to be done with HOME FOR CHRISTMAS by the end of March and halfway through KEEPING SECRETS by then, too. The critique partners are doing a good job of catching my comma fetish. They all say its flowing well and they've caught a few plot holes I had to fix with a sentence or two . Anyway, I need to get off here to get the packages fixed up to be mailed tomorrow and to finish writing my chapter this evening.

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