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Mar. 10th, 2010

prepping for travel

I always forget how much stress increases as I approach air travel.  Even the relative ease with which I have managed in the past serves only to temper the stress, never eliminate it.
In any case, I'm flying on Friday.

I shall be landing in Philadelphia, and barring any other plans I will be training directly to Manhattan from there, and spending a week in the land of college buddies, spiritual friends, museums, and pubs. I am hoping that once I have landed my stomach will proceed as it has in this last month, and allow me to enjoy large chunks of time without distress.  Whee!

From NYC I'll be heading back to Philly for the Equinox weekend and some fandom fun in the city. Yes, it's a tiny Merlin Con. ;)

My biggest hope for the week, outside of quality time with folks I don't get to see a lot, is that I'll get some use out of my sketchbooks and pencils.

Dec. 3rd, 2009

a random rant + stuff

Getting e-mail responses from my senators always makes my blood pressure skyrocket.  It's not that I don't understand that they are pretty much absolutely opposed to my views on just about everything, but I still get so peeved to get these long involved letters that pretty much tell me that I am an idiot. I may be over-sensitive here, but I wish they would just skip the overly text-heavy reply and just say that they received my message, some intern made a note somewhere of the general gist, and they are going to do what they want anyway. Better that than this ridiculous response in which they pretend to relate to me when it couldn't be more obvious that it's a canned platform response. They even say that it's because of citizens like me that they will keep blocking the very legislation I wrote in to support (or vice versa). Do they have no concept of a constituent writing in to disagree?
Also, I don't appreciate the informal greeting, nor the generic "Friend".  I'm not a friend of my congresspeople, I am one of their many constituents.  Call me "Constituent" if you can't automate a Title and Surname off the e-mail form. Let's be real about our relationship.
One good thing I can say is that so far I haven't gotten any letters. My old rep (Democrat, not that it seems to matter) used to send those canned, patronizing responses on expensive letterhead (sometimes two pages worth!) even after I asked the folks on the phone not to send me a response.
At least the interns who answer my phone calls have so far been unfailingly polite.

Maybe I should go have a drink and relax. I am obviously overthinking today. 

Can I just say, too, while I'm ranting, SNOW?! In December? In Houston? Seriously, what is that? Oh, climate change, how we love you. The birds are going to be so flipping confused. Not to mention the trees. They all still have leaves!  Anyway...

Lunchtime is over. Got stuff to do today and then I'm driving to Austin in the morning. Cons... there are some events when having a smartphone with web access would be quite useful.

I'm going to add in a small squee, because I can: Merlin Series 3 got the green light from the BBC! w00t! Why must my only currently airing fandom be something none of my RL friends likes or has heard of? I need some folks to squee with...  oh, well. 

Also, here, in pretty font this time:

the ♥
fanart love ♥ meme

Sep. 21st, 2009

sick day

As some folks already know, I spent today being sick. Ugh.  I still have a low-grade fever, and the persistance of that will determine whether or not I go to work tomorrow.
I spent this morning at the emergency clinic with Awesome!Chauffeur!Dad, and then the rest of the day in varying stages of sleep or eating under Mom's eye.
Now I'm taking advantage of brief moments of concentration and hoping that I can sleep through the night. Or at least large chunks of it.

Aug. 11th, 2009

home again!

I'm back from the adventure that was WorldCon, ready to read the great entries in the Snarry Games that I missed, and catch up with the BLU and Merlin Big Bang entries.  w00t!
I should also go grocery shopping.
My travel season has come to an end, except for short weekend drives to local events. No more flying for a while, not until Christmas in all likelihood.
It's been a fun summer, though, full of great people, exciting places, and gorgeous fun.

Now I really do need to concentrate on unpacking my apartment into something more livable. And finishing this wedding quilt that's been sitting on the shelf all summer.

Also, Jim Kirk is a total manwhore. (It made sense in Montreal.)

Aug. 4th, 2009

gone to WorldCon

I'm off to Montreal for WorldCon, be back next week. 
I'll try to get net access, but for the most part I'll be off the grid.

Jul. 15th, 2009

deadlines and Azkatraz

Well, I managed, by staying until after 7pm yesterday, to finish the deadline stuff for work today, so that I have a few loose ends to tie up before leaving for Azkatraz, but mostly things are done.

I'm flying out tonight, so perhaps I'll see some of you guys at the hotel?
If you don't have my phone number and might want it, drop me a line at zephrene AT gmail, and I'll pop it over to you.  Otherwise, I expect I'll see quite a few of you at HBP tomorrow, and at various volunteering gigs Friday.  :)

I'll be back, and hopefully more productive, in a week, but only until the time rolls around to leave for this year's WorldCon in Montreal.  (eeee, exciting!)

See you in San Francisco!

Apr. 27th, 2009


Hello, Fandom.
I hope I've gotten all my looming deadlines in because I am miles from my tablet... soon to be 1800 miles!
I'll be in New York City for the next week - Tuesday to Tuesday. 
The Tarot Reader's Studio is Beltane Weekend, plus there shall be much social time with friends far and near, including visiting from Australia. Yay! Glee! Wahoo!

I'll likely not be out of electronic contact, but it all will depend on the ready availability of computers and/or wireless.

Coming in May, I hope: finishing the unfinished fanart in the archives.  Plus of course the next set of deadlines. Fun times, indeed.

Apr. 5th, 2009

home sweet home

Well, I've moved!  Egads.

My stuff is all still in boxes and bags and a few piles, as I try to get it organized or at least find the stuff I need for day-to-day.

You know, I figured out after mom snuck some stuff into a bag for my kitchen that I don't have a can opener?  It's things like that that are going to trip me up for the next few weeks.  ;)

Apr. 2nd, 2009

adventures in moving

So it was pouring rain this morning, but the storm had blown through by the time the movers arrived. 
Adventure the First: in securing the dog, I was sure that I had accidentally let the cat outside, which wasn't a terrible crisis necessarily but it's always worrying in a neighborhood so rife with strays.  We fretted about that while the guys moved the boxes and stuff, and searched the house to no avail.
Well, Peter called me when I was at the new place unloading to tell me that the cat was found, in a busy corner of the garage.

Adventure the Second: arrived at apartment, began unloading process. No problems with any of the boxes or furniture, and the place is well-lit by daylight and relatively cool, so at first I don't realize that the electricity is completely out. Finally somebody tries to turn on the bathroom lights without success, and I flip every switch and realize that while the fridge and AC are apparently on standby, the power is pretty much out.
So I call Gexa who calls Centerpoint who says the power is on from their end, check the breaker box. So I call maintenance and they come by and fiddle and lo, the lights work.
Well, not quite.
I turned the AC on, and the lights flickered, then next time I went to hit the switch, nothing.  The AC is blowing but now the lights AND the fridge have gone off.  Hm.
Call maintenance again (by this time the movers are done and gone) and they come by and promise to have things fixed this afternoon, so I go to lunch with mom.  When I get back, still no power, but there's a maintenance guy out by the boxes. 
Hopefully by the time I get to sleeping at the place, the power will be reliably back on.

Also, the doc has taken me off the meds and says to see how I do in my new situation with acupuncture and tai chi and everything. Mostly it's the diet - continuing to do either the No Sugar/Flour Food Plan or the modified hypoglycemic food plan - that may make a difference. I'm to report back in three months, unless the symptoms get worse or change drastically.

So that's that.

Mar. 30th, 2009

general PSA

Especially for fandom:


This means that I will have questionable access to: the fandom parts of the internet (you know what I mean), my art supplies, and in fact, all my stuff.

I'll try to be back and on point for any pending deadlines by this weekend, but it'll depend on how cooperative the cable modem is.

Hey, I get a bed on Friday! w00t!

Mar. 29th, 2009

still packing

Packing, shopping for a bed, figuring out that maybe I'm hypoglycemic in addition to the stomach issues because I almost passed out and was shaking Friday night and had to miss a birthday gathering for a friend because I didn't trust myself to drive.  :(
But Saturday was much better and I watched what I ate and there were birthday people to greet and a party to go to. (Why is almost everybody I know born in March?) Donna and Jon and Lando the Magnificent Walking, Babbling, Playing Boy met me for Donna's birthday lunch, and have now seen my apartment, empty and echoing. Lando christened it with drool and laughter, so yay.

Then I went to my cousin Dave's birthday party, which was a live action role-playing card game called Long Live the King.  It was pretty awesome, although I was still trying to control my headachy symptoms (plus even I get a couple weeks when the pollen wreaks havoc with my sinuses).  I played the Archbishop with a 3-minute Mitre made of construction paper, while there were vast levels of costumery among the other folks.  From simple tunics and capes to full-on Henry VIII style gear, it was a good night for costumes.
I didn't know most of the people there, because this cousin was one of the ones that I used to see only for Christmas each year, if then.  But he's discovered that I'm a geek and a gamer, so now I get invited to these things. :)
It was a fun time, but as with many of these games, I think that the next time it's played, things will go much more smoothly.  Last night we were a bit confused about what we could and could not do, and nobody knew exactly how to win. It always takes at least one round for the players to really grok the strategy.  So, I can only hope we find excuses to play again!

Also, another cousin had a birthday last week (and I should have e-mailed him or something - bad me.) and Peter and Hillary are Tuesday and today, respectively.
March - a popular month for being born.

Today mom and I have made it our mission to buy me a bed, and then I have to get the rest of the assorted misc junk off my floor and shelves and into boxes, because the movers are coming on THURSDAY. Yeep.

Mar. 25th, 2009

packing, packing, packing

I'm busily trying to divide my whole life into boxes and it's driving me batty.
Alas, none of my usual chatrooms are active, and nobody is on gmail. 
I guess I have to get used to just working without the distractions.

Isn't it funny that in all the planning for the new apartment, we keep denoting space for the TV, and where the cables are going to go, but I don't actually own a television?
Ha, modern life.

Moving will drive you mad!

Jan. 8th, 2009

new year crunch

January is a crunch time at work, and I have been home only a couple of hours (awake anyhow) for the last few days. Next week looks like more of the same. It's CRAZY busy at the office and I have tons of club meetings and an evening art class and I just haven't had a space to breathe since I got back from Philadelphia.

I am thinking that there are fests signing up that I am missing...
And I could do a Year in Art post...
And I think reveals have gone up that I missed... (will have to catch up this weekend for thank-yous and such)

The only thing I've managed to do fandom-wise is my clunky Happy Birthday sketch for Snape, which I will post when I get back to Ginevra, I hope. Sofia is a mighty little machine, but she doesn't keep any art.

What am I forgetting? 
Don't you hate that feeling?
And seriously, I have this Godzilla quilt practically designed in my head, but I haven't had the chance to get out my fabric yet. It's all in a basket on my desk! Curses! Where is my Time-Turner?

Ok, lunch is over. Time to be crunched by the Jaws of Industry.
I hope this settles down by February.

Jan. 3rd, 2009


Ok, I'm back! Hooray!
I had a wonderful fabulous time and hopefully there will be pictures later and stories and stuff, too, but I was much too busy to do much internet stuff while I was away.
Now I have lots to do! Eep!

Wow, Ginevra's screen looks wildly huge after a week of Sofia's. LOL.
Sofia is going to be a great little music machine for my office, though.

Ok, must go catch up, and unpack my stuff.

Dec. 26th, 2008

going shopping

Mom and I have some last-minute errands to run before I skip town tomorrow.  (I scheduled another crack-of-dawn flight. Egads.)
We're going to the art supply. Yay!  I will be there more often soon.  One of my Yule gifts to myself was a Watercolor class at the Art League.  w00t! 
I am so excited. It starts my first week back in town. I am really looking forward to getting into more media on paper, and perhaps combining the watercolors with the pencils.  I had great success with watercolor pencils on my travels during high school.  My Poland journal is full of great art. I need to get back to that.

This afternoon the kids promised they'd be around to play games, so yay. Hopefully we can get in some railroad-building, some gloomy family wrangling, and some volcano sacrificing.  w00t! Mom and I have played a few games in the course of our holiday celebrations (which included reading the comics, doing the crossword, baking cookies, and reading aloud to each other from The United States Constitution: A Graphic Adaptation and The Quotable Atheist, which I gave to Mom for Christmas. Yes, irony, I know.) but we haven't had everybody together yet.

Then I have three pieces of digital art to finish and send before I leave town, and I must pack. I am bringing some art with me to work on, already in progress, and will have to decide about the rest of it. I am going to freeze my butt off!  Where did I leave my tights? And my boots? At least I have a new scarf.

Ok, must run. Happy Boxing Day/First Day of Christmas, people!

Dec. 24th, 2008

festive holiday cheer

Things I have done that are fun:

- went to see The Day the Earth Stood Still with my dad. We snarked. And enjoyed ourselves. And snarked. It was good.
- played two rounds of The Downfall of Pompeii with my mom. w00t! Sacrifice them to the volcano! Muahahahaha!
- made cinnamon pecans, watched Donna bake while entertaining the little one, played with Lando, danced Lando around the kitchen, introduced Lando to Sandra Boynton's brilliant Hippos Go Berserk! counting board book, and ate yummy festive holiday pound cake (which isn't fruitcake. really).
- watched A Muppet Family Christmas  and A Muppet Christmas Carol with Donna and Lando and, later, Jon.

also done:
- laundry. lots of it.
- moved furniture, re-arranged my room, sorted books, sorted more books, including antiques, moved boxes of toys, and helped mom hook up her computer to the network printer.

coming soon:
- baking cookies! (maybe.)
- playing more games with the family.
- big extended family Christmas meal and game playing.
- making art.
- sewing.
- moving all the boxes to make space for the new craft table.
- packing for Philadelphia (what do you mean it might snow in December? Where did I put my boots?)

Dec. 1st, 2008

December already?

So, er, yeah. I'm still here, still doing stuff, getting behind on the writing but all caught up on the art at last. Looking forward to traveling at the end of the month although I will need to stock up on Airborne for the trip. Egads, it looks cold up there.
Thanksgiving was a festival of drinking, eating, movies, games, cleaning, sorting, drawing, reading, and lazing about. There was also some unfortunate GI distress, which has prompted me to make an appointment to discuss the pharmaceutical option with my doctor. Ever since he ran down the typical symptoms, I've been noticing ones that I hadn't really connected with IBS before. Plus I can't eat anything, it seems, without a lot of discomfort.
We're doing the Food Plan again so we didn't actually make Thanksgiving foods at home, and partook of them sparingly at my aunt's. I am trying to be more diligent about the food diary. With sickness came the inevitable holiday depression, although thankfully that didn't last too long. Somehow I have in my head that achieving a certain level of crafty productivity will mean I never feel depressed again. But experience shows that no matter how many works of art I produce, I will still occasionally be sad. Such is life.
Mom and I watched her favorite reality TV program yesterday: Smart People Doing Real Stuff. The NASA Channel had live radio and video feeds from Mission Control and the cockpit as the shuttle landed. It was pretty cool.
Now that all of my anonymous exchange art is turned in for the next month and a half, I hope to do some work that I can post free and clear, as well as participate in various December writing games, and of course I have a quilt to make. Need to print the photos for that. And find the final important design element to print and applique. It's something very specific, but that has many variations, so I will probably be scouring various sources for a good one. (And I'm hoping that part of it, at least, will be a surprise, as it is a gift.)
And here, since it's December: a meme about Christmas.
Hey, I can start playing my Holiday Playlist now! w00t!

Christmas meme )

Nov. 13th, 2008

busy, busy

I'm still not totally caught up on my deadlines, but hopefully I'll get that taken care of very soon.

I'm very excited this morning because this afternoon Julie is landing in my town and we are going to have an awesome time!  We will be visiting the Butterfly Center, the Planetarium, at least one major garden, and the Texas Renaissance Festival.

Now I'd best get myself going and get ready for the day.

Sep. 22nd, 2008

back in town

I'm back from my second wedding weekend, with good news!
Mom called at 10:30 to tell me our power came back on! Hurrah!

Wedding weekend was lovely, but wow it was cold in the Catskills at night. I hadn't packed for that, had to borrow clothes.  ;)
Wedding itself was a fairy tale, and it was wonderful to see so many friends, old and new.  I even got a referral while I was there; one of the groom's friends was so enchanted with the ceremony he wants advice about his own wedding. Not sure if that will be another wedding for me or not, as he lives in the UK and that brings its own special brand of legal hurdles, but it would be nice. Still, interfaith weddings are what I do, so I'm happy to email the couple about theirs. Fun times, indeed.

Now that we have the power back I can't wait to really get going on my pending art projects. Whee!

Sep. 16th, 2008

we're ok

hurricane report )

The upshot of it for fandom is: I am still out for the count as I can't really do much fan stuff or art from my office (especially since I have no office downtime - we're running major damage control). There is a city-wide curfew that will limit my ability to find and hang out at places that have both power and wifi, plus my parents still need my help at home when I can be there with daylight.
I don't know when we'll get power back, and I'm flying to New York for a wedding this weekend, so basically all my fandom stuff is getting pushed to secondary importance until at least next week.
I don't expect to actually withdraw from anything - I just won't be doing any significant volume of non-exchange or non-games work for the rest of September.

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