Monday, March 30, 2009

She's a little better

The hub went to see his mom tonight.  She was better, still hallucinating but at least now she was using words instead of: mmmsggsss, ggggeerrrrr, mms, kkkkaaa, mahnnaaaa.  But I could hear her and she was telling someone that she was falling.  She wasn't, she was right in bed, in no danger of falling over.  She has a big fear of falling.  

Man oh man, it's a good thing I get paid on Tuesday.  When the hub called and said he was going to the grocery store before coming home I asked the him to get something at the grocery store for the daughter (who slept all day due to a migraine) and I figured I could eat for dinner too.  

He didn't get it so I had no dinner.  Wah.  Now I am hungry.  I should have eaten his chili dog today when I had the opportunity, but I didn't because I left it for him.  

And now I'm going to bed.  

Update on the MIL in the hospital

The MIL got admitted yesterday, took them until 11:30 p.m. or so to get her in a room.  I'm sure the boys are exhausted today.  

She's got a UTI, is dehydrated and she probably hasn't eaten in a day or two.  Joan said she didn't touch her food while she was visiting (she ordered food for both of them).  

Usually when we visit I have to urge the MIL to eat.  That by itself is telling.  She loves food almost more than anything else.  That she ignores it even when she is lucid is a little sign.  

It's not surprising that she didn't eat the last 2 days because she was totally out of it.  Joan says she had no awareness of her even being there.  I don't understand why the assisted living place didn't call someone when she wasn't eating or didn't appear at the dining room...especially since she was mumbling and not responsive to anything but her own internal LaLa land.  I questioned the doctors decision to release her on Sat because it didn't sound like she was of sound mind or even semi-sound...but I guess they must have figured that whoever took care of her would raise the alarm if things weren't right.

But they didn't.  

The other thing is for the last 2 days she hasn't had her levadopa meds, she's mostly been without and her Parkinsons is very evident in her movements.  The jerking, the facial contortions are the reality of what the levadopa does do for her.  I wonder how long it will take to ramp up the meds again so she can have the dosage to control the spasms without either going to sleep or into delusional LaLa land.  I also wonder when they will reintroduce the meds, before or after she starts becoming lucid from the antibiotics getting rid of the UTI?  If the UTI is under control will she regain some of her mind from the delirum?

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Back to the emergency room

The hub called the MIL earlier today and she didn't answer.  Jona, a friend of the MIL went to see her today.  

She called and said she'd just gotten back and the MIL was not right.  All she did for 2 hours was mumble jibberish.  Joan called the front desk and told them something was wrong.  It took them a while but they got there and Joan left.

While I was on the phone with Joan someone called the hub and said they were taking the MIL to the emergency room again.

I called the SIL and she is calling her living place to find out what happened.  

I was surprised that they released her last night.  But I'm also sure they think she's senile and maybe how she appears is how she is, when it's not.

I'm betting it will be a longish night for the boys and for her. 

Saturday, March 28, 2009

MIL update, the daughter gets gold and sock monkeys read

While at book club I heard from the hub.  MIL has a UTI (which can and does cause hallucinations in the elderly).  The boys have had her in the docs twice asking if she had a UTI and all cultures came back clean until today.  Hmmmmm.  But a UTI does answer why she's had hallucinations.  The doc's said nothing wrong with her heart.  The hub did say something that I thought was odd and that was the MIL hadn't had at least 2 dosages of her medications (while she was at the hospitial) and she was cycling thru the same couple of hallucinations.  

I was thinking that maybe without the meds, the hallucinations would lessen.  Well, we wait to see if the antibiotics gets rid of the UTI and hopefully she'll be lucid again.  It's hard on the boys to have to deal with this.

The daughter and her choir got: 1st place gold for show choir (she has a long solo in this) and 1st place gold for chamber choir.  The adjudicator's came up on stage afterwards and asked who was the soloist.  The daugher stood and they told her she was great, just perfect.  

I only got text, the hub got a phone call and she was wayyyy excited.  Love that so much!  She's worked so hard on her voice and delivery those comments about sent her to the moon!

Book club was fun.  Everyone liked the book alot.  

Earlier today I made a new graphic in PhotoImpact.  Here it is.   See that latte cup?  It's the exact cup I use every single day for my lattes.  Yes, it's that big in comparison to the book and sock monkey head.   Btw, on my FB my name is on the spine of the book.  Here in my anon blog it's absent.  

MIL emergency

I'm about to leave for bookclub.  Have to catch a ride.  I'm the only one in the family with a working car but the only one who has to catch rides everywhere.  Or I get stuck at home.  

Last night I had no car and tonight I thought I'd have a car but there is an emergency with the MIL.  She fell again (she thinks out of her bed, not likely since they don't really let you go to bed in the middle of the day).  She did NOT use her emergency button thing that she wears around her neck.  Apparently she was yelling for help.  Have no idea if anyone could really hear her since she doesn't really raise her voice loud enough to hear, not usually anyway.  Plus she was slurry, nobody could understand much of what she said.  

She's at the emergency room after an ambulance ride.  She's not too injured (so far), she has a contusion over her eye and she's probably bruised.  

They're giving her a cat scan, and some other scan to check out her chest.  Someone said a possible arythmia (sp) thing, they used the word blockage but the hub doesn't think they meant blockage as in low blood flow.  There is this: and then this:

My mom had arrhythmia (tachycardia) which caused her to fall over and convulse, it never caused any slurring of words or hallucinations.  

I suspect they won't find anything because I do think it's meds and possibly hallucinations related.  She was jerking oddly last Sunday and both boys have seen her using her arms to lift her body out of the wheelchair.  It's possible she's thinking she wants to get out of the chair and is partially successful...but since she cannot use her legs she'd fall right over. 

I really wish they'd withdraw all meds and introduce them back to her to find out which one/ or which combo is the one that is causing all the problems.  Yes, I think she'd be shaking like crazy but at least she'd be cognizant (I think).  And if she isn't we'll know she's definately got Parkinsons dementia.

This sucks.  I'll be getting reports as the boys hear from the docs.  Susan is picking me up in a few minutes.  

It's dark o'clock

I do not know why every day this week I've gotten up really early.  Like today, what am I doing up at 5:30 a.m.? 

Why do we use a contraction for o'clock?  It's easier to say it instead of:  "it's 5:30 of the clock" but it's still weird. I wonder why we don't say, "It's quarter past o'hour" for quarter past the hour of the clock?   One would never say "It's quarter past o'clock."

And a big questions is, why am I pondering this at 5:45 o'clock in the morning? 

Friday, March 27, 2009

Little Bee read, part II

I finished Little Bee this morning.  For some odd reason I woke up at 5:15 a.m.  The daughter was leaving for San Francisco and I must have worried that she wouldn't get to school on time (had to be there at 6:15 a.m.).  So I finished the book. 

The story is so great, the voices of most of the characters are so great that it makes me crazy that some of the transitions are so abrupt.  

I loved the voice of Little Bee.  Her character was perfect.  I did not like the characters: Laurence and the assistant to Sarah.  I didn't even like Sarah that much even tho she had some heroics in the story.  

I don't understand the usage of "darling" between grown adults as casual conversation.  LOL, it's very british to speak that way apparently.  Everytime an author uses "darling" in a casual conversation between 2 co-workers: "Whyever would you resign darling?" I hear a droll upper class voice in my head.  It's kind of icky.

The family dogs portrait

Our doggies.  Drawn in Photoimpact 10. 

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Little Bee review Part I

So I'm on page 206 of 271 of Little Bee.  Yeah, it's a one night sit down and read book.  If I didn't spend time on the computer I'd be done with it by now.  

I love the voice of the author but there are transition problems with the story.  Some great exposition the first half of the book.  Then all of a sudden the mode changes and the author jumps right into situations and conversations that wouldn't happen in real life.  Not situations like space ships appearing but strangers talking about the most intimate (and no, it's not about sex) feelings/situations to one another.  I feel a hint of my own mores being stretched too.

I'd give it a A for the first section, a C for later sections.  Since I plan on going to bed in a few mins I won't know til tomorrow whether I'll up the grade for the later sections.


I'm very worried about the MIL

The boys took the MIL to the neurologist today.  She's been having more than a few bouts of hallucinations lately and today she apparently fell or slid out out of her wheelchair.

I do believe most of her hallucinations are from being elderly and on Sinemet (a levadopa medicine).  Any, and I mean any changes to her medicine taking schedule or changes in her dosage can cause her to go into LaLa land.  Either she is slurry with her words/language or she sees/hears things that aren't there or gets ideas in her head that aren't true.

There is also a part of me that believes that she is getting some cognitive decline from age and Parkinsons.  I've read stats that say 20, 30 or 40% of all Parkinsons patients develop dementia.  I also read that the meds such as Sinemet don't cause the dementia: from this website: Click for Parkinsons dementia info here. 

"The drugs used to treat Parkinson’s do not cause
dementia but may exacerbate or bring to light the
symptoms of dementia, such as hallucinations,
confusion or aggressive behaviour."

My worry is that if the hallucinations cannot be controlled then she won't be able to stay at the assisted living place.  She'll need to be in a more hands on facility.  She would hate that.  Especially since the dementia seems to come and there would be times where she'd know she's in a different type of place.  Sadly it wouldn't matter what causes them, if they are present for lengths of time where she cannot help herself.  

I'm very worried.  I don't think that the dementia is something to worry about (as in placement) in the very near future but I have a feeling it is coming.  Every time I see her she is less and less intact.  

Still choppy waters

Today was somewhat better in the office.  Not much but some.  

The girl who's actions caused the blow up wasn't talking to anyone.  The girl who blew up was acting as if there was no blow up yesterday.  

The one calm guy and me talked about it and we both patted each other on the back that a call for professionalism and calmness was how we both reacted.  <----- that is a bad sentence, but you get the gist.  He asked me if the Boss knew about the personnel issues.  Yes, mostly she does but she doesn't address any personnel issues...hence neither does her direct reports.  He's quite new there and is generally quiet and doesn't get involved.  He neither adds or subtracts to the chaos. 

I'm so glad I'm off tomorrow, the whole office is off.  Good thing, everyone needs to get away from there.  Some of the office people (who were not involved) are thinking of going to someone who can be impartial and report the issues to see if they can get some conflict resolution going on.  

Tonight I have to read the book club book (Little Bee) and have it finished by Sat at 6:30.  It's book club night on Sat.  I'd better get a move on! 

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Observing the blender effect

Here's how the day went:

One employee comes to me shaking she's so mad at a situation at work. I calm her.

That employee meets with her team behind closed doors, there is yelling, screaming, crying.

Nobody else in the office will go in there.  The office manager will not go in there.  

I go and tell them to knock off the screaming/yelling behaviour and act professional.  (not in those words but that was the gist).  The girl is in tears, almost all of the guys are yelling at her.  

One of the guys yells at me that he will not do what I say, he'll will not calm down and I don't have the right to tell him to calm down.  I ignore him (but he is very aggressive and asshole-ish) I suggest they either calm down or take 15 mins to regroup and if they can't act like professionals then go to their corners and wait til they can talk and not scream.  They calm down mostly. I leave them to hash it out. 

Another girl finds out her actions were the cause of the entire thing.

She talks to me about it at lunch. So I listen to her and try to calm her down. She's pissed but does calm down some.  She leaves. 

Another employee stops by my table and tells me about a project she is working on and then the crying first girl comes out ranting and raving and bitching to me about the girl who did the actions.  I try to calm her down but she's so pissed she wants to vent.  by the time she leaves she's calmer but not calm.

I go back to the office. I hear from the husband, the truck is totaled.  Frame bent and torn.  I also hear that my sons 2 best friends and ex girlfriend where hit by a car while riding their bikes.  Yes, all three of them.  My son was supposed to go with them but couldn't because he had school.  All of them survived but one has 2 fractures in her back, and a broken wrist.  One guy only has bruises on his hip.  The third has road rash all over his body.  No head injuries.  All three very lucky.

One of the guys at work talks to me about the altercation.  He tells me the crying woman tried to leave and one of the guys held the door and told her she was not leaving until they'd hashed it out.  (I think this is possibly illegal or at the very least actionable as a grievance) We agree it was a bad day at work.

My carpooler has been dealing with a middle school problem, her son was threatened and some other 7th grader held a (closed) knife at his throat.  The kid is probably gonna get it.  My carpooler is pissed and cannot believe someone had threatened her kids life.

Like I said, bad day.  It was like turning a blender on without a top, everything blew today. 

I'm not involved with any of the drama at work.  But I know about all of it.  Almost everyone comes to me and tells me things.  I just listen.  I don't tell anyone else what the other person said, I don't want to get involved.  I have no idea why people tell me these things, they just do.  It's probably because I don't get myself in the middle of it, I just listen.  There is something wrong that employees don't have the faith to talk to their bosses (even when I suggest they go to them.)

Oh yeah, and the guy that screamed at me? He apologized to me.  I accepted his apology and he'd better hope he never screams at me like that again.  

You'll notice nobody with any management title got involved.  

Need to feel refreshed?

Last weekend Susan called me to drive out to Michaels with her.  I can never resist going to a craft store so off we went.  I didn't really need anything so I didn't buy anything (OMG, can you believe it?).  She bought teacher-type stamps and we were out of there in 15 mins.

We got coffee, sat and talked mostly of our families and what everyone's been up to.  After that update we decided to walk to Big Lots across the parking lot.  That particular store has yarn.  Not much yarn but a little.  I got 2 skeins of Bernat Matrix yarn for a dollar a skein!  

We wandered the aisles looking for other good deals.  We noticed that Big Lots had more expensive items (like a 25.00 candle.  Some cheesy flatware was priced at 25.00 as well.)  They still had cheesy cheap stuff but a lot of the name brand stuff was priced higher than what you'd expect at Big Lots. 

I did spy this little product and I knew I had to whip out the cell phone camera. 

Head wipes.  I guess when guys need to feel refreshed they can wipe their heads.  And look, the price is only 2.00!  Refreshing cleanliness for only 2.00!  I'm a little disappointed that the box doesn't state the head wipes are antibacterial too.  But I guess those head wipe marketers can't think of everything.  I guess I have to be satisfied that each one is "individually wrapped".  The little wrapped package shown on the box looks like a condom doesn't it?  Well, I guess you could wipe that head too if you accidently pull out a Head Wipe instead of the trusty Trojan.  

Sunday, March 22, 2009

I'm wrung out

The whole family piled into my car to visit the MIL.  The MIL was hallucinating again.  By the time she got out to us, she was fairly lucid, a little weird but lucid mostly.  But she did tell me more than a few times that she thinks she is dreaming very vivid dreams, and has to look up hallucinations because she thinks they are very heavy dreams where she can remember everything.  

She got her pills and took a nose dive into LaLaLand.  

She would die of embarrassment if she had any idea what she looks like.  She began weird behaviour like taking her (plastic) fork and trying to pick up food off her chest/belly that wasn't there.  She began sagging in her chair and mumbling.  Her eyes would look at you but they were totally unfocused and dialated.  She could not follow directions at all.  She sees things that aren't there but cannot talk to tell you of them.  I mean she does talk but she moves her mouth and the volume goes up and down to noting mid-sentence.

We took her to her room and called an aide to put her to bed.  She was so high from the drugs that she couldn't function.  I leaned in close to her and she was trying to tell me about doing "presents".  She keeps talking about Christmas when she really means all of us trading birthday presents.  It was not a good evening for her for about 1/2 the evening.

Off that topic. 

I hate sarcasm.  I mean it, I hear it and I totally turn off.  Or try to, my stomach clenches and I just want to get out of there.  Run away, fleeee.  The more I hear sarcasm the more panic stricken I get.  I just turn tail and leave as soon as I can.  Why is it so important to be so sarcastic to people?  Sarcasm is like little nails driven into people, it wounds them.  It makes me sick.  Listening to argueing and sarcasm shrivels my soul.  Really, what is the purpose of it?  

Off that topic.

Tonight we stopped at Borders.  There was this youngish woman with a little boy about 5.  She gave him 2 more minutes (3 times) to pick a comic book.  She finally pointed to one with the toe of her boot: "Get that one, the one with the guy with a needle stuck in his eye."

That made me sad.  

Saturday, March 21, 2009

The truck photos

I downloaded the photos for the husband today.  It's funny the damage on the truck doesn't look that bad when you look at it two dimensionally.   That said, the truck is not drivable.   If you want to see each photo in more detail, click the photo.  It will enlarge.

The front end is pushed to the right and folded underneath so it's touching the left front tire.  The bumper is toast and also is pushed the same way.

The photo below is the right side.  And see those legs in the jeans?  That's me.  The torso in the red is the passenger of the other car.  He hit his head on the windshield (which did break) but didn't seem to be suffering from it.  He was awfully cheery.  

The photo below shows how the bumper is barely hanging on.  The ground is wet underneath, radiator is probably punctured or hoses are disconnected.  

I have a photo of the small dent on the rear left panel but it's not all that exciting of a photo.  I don't know if the dent is easily repaired or if it is in such a place that the panel (which would be very large) would need to be replaced.

No idea what kind of cost would be associated with this sort of damage, I can only say that the smashed door (on this same vehicle) was about 2k.  However that damage did not occur with this accident.  

Also, the hub told me more details.  The other driver turned when the hub was about 20 ft from him.  He was traveling between 40 - 45 mph.  The hub turned the wheel to the right  and ended up hitting the front right side of the other car.  The other car passenger was lucky, more than likely if he's actually t-boned them he might have been badly injured.  It was more of a glancing blow but it did spin them around.  Their car was pointed the opposite way than they were going.

Hub said he had buddha clarity as he went thru the accident.  However, he doesn't really remember the airbag going off but remembers the dust from the airbag (he thought it was smoke).  Nor does he remember hitting his leg and he has a small injury there.  The worst of it is the airbag burn he got on his arm.  

Everyone was lucky to have gotten out of it with just very minor injuries.  The hub loves the fact that the truck kept him safe.  My thoughts are he was lucky it was a small compact car, he only hit them a glancing blow, not a head-on and air bags are pretty danged good.  I did tell him his belly saved him because it mostly hit his belly/chest area.  He's lucky to be tall, I probably would be hit in the face because I'm short.  I have a feeling that if he ends up having to get a new vehicle he'll go for the same truck.  I am hoping he goes for a more economical fuel vehicle.  

Friday, March 20, 2009

Dang it accident

It's weird when you get a call that your husband has been in an auto accident.  The first thing you think of is: Are you ok?  Which is sort of odd because it was the husband who is calling me, not a stranger asking me if my husbands name is....

So I leave work early, I just told one manager and took off.  I knew he was ok (and he was cussing a blue streak) but still I had to see for myself.

It took me 25 mins to drive there.  No way to get on the freeway to that spot.  The husband was standing next to his truck and yes, it was smash-a-roo-ed.  Front grill pushed up and over.  The left front panel and that part of the bumper was smashed up against the tire.  No way to drive it.  The damage does all the way to the back panel.  This is a GMC extended cab truck so it's big.  The car that pulled in front of him was an old Honda Civic.  No match for the truck.

I don't know if it will be totaled.  Maybe, the truck is probably valued somewhere between 10 and 15k and I'm betting the body work will come to almost that amount.  Hard to tell if the frame is bent so it might come down to how much the body work will cost to call it a total loss.  

The car that pulled out in front of the hub is an old, broken down looking civic.  The guy didn't have a license but does have insurance.  Thank God.  We suck because we have a 500.00 deductable.  Well, that's better than having to replace a car without insurance.  So I'm counting us as lucky.  

As soon as he downloads the photos I'll post a photo.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Looking towards a day off with no responsibilities!

I am sooo happy, next Friday I have the whole day off.  It's Ceasar Chavez day and my company takes that day off.  Me and Kim are going to do something I think.  Something cheap since neither of us have money.  Maybe we'll drive down to the beach and just sit and read.  I just want a day off without anything to do.  Huzzah.

Good plan eh?

Wed haps

Yesterdays happening where I work:

From about 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
A woman screaming in Starbucks: I am a good mother, I'm 53 and I have 5 kids. Another woman calling the police. I did not see this, I heard about it from coworkers.
The same woman sitting a table behind us fixing the girls hair (she is maybe 12). Hovering and watchful. This I saw.
The same woman and girl lean against the wall across the parking lot.Later, the woman sits on the stairs with the girl straddling her, lying on her like a rag doll.  Mom says: It's ok, it's ok.  My friend sees this. 
The woman in a police car pleading to a friend, "Please help me, I need to get out of this car, please get me out." My friend called me to tell me about this encounter.
Walking by the policecar, the little girl over to the side talking to a policeman. I hear, "We're going to admit her/you today." Not clear if it was the kid or the mom. The mother did not try to speak to us.
A woman in a blue shirt came, stoked the girls hair, talked to the girl. Talked to the police, talked to the mom and took the girl's hand and walked away.
The girl never looked back at her mom in the policecar.
The policecars drove away with the woman in the backseat.

Something was "off" about those 2.  Maybe the mom was off her meds?  Sad to see unfolding.  **********************************************

Last night played a public game of scrabble on FB.  Was losing in a big way.  I had no vowels so had to play 3 letter words for about 6 turns.  Got a 4 letter word: qaid and played it on a triple.  Got good points.  Amost caught up, but not quite.  Then got a Bingo.  Passed the guy by 20 pts. Two turns later I get another Bingo.  Now I'm up over 100 pts to my competitor.  He takes one more turn, it's my turn and he forfeits.

Just forfeits just like that!  The Z was still unplayed, there were 14 tiles in the bag and we both had full holders of 7 letters.  Grrrrr.  336-259.  He could have caught up.  I had 5 vowels and 2 Y's in my hand. 

FB sends me an email saying: "Chris F. could not handle the heat and forfeited the Scrabble game named "let's roll!". Click here to see the game."


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Me pants

Today I wore the pants I made. I used navy material since I don't have any navy pants.

Here I am walking away from my pal who was taking photos at an event I had to attend today.

I bought that jacket for 15.00 (yahoooo) and didn't really have pants that matched. I have khaki's that match the tan in it but really it needs navy pants. So even tho I didn't bring the jacket to match it, it works pretty well don't you think?

It's funny because today there were bag pipers at this event. Their tartan's matched my jacket perfectly in color. I mean perfectly. Strange.

I'm pretty happy with those pants...I need to make some more in different lengths. And some in some easy crisp cotton (a blend preferably) so I can wear them to work in the summer. Today by 10 a.m. it was hot and I could have been very comfortable in some cropped pants. (athough cropped pants would have been way too casual for the event.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Creaky and cranky

Ya remember that pattern I bought last week? So I finally decided to cut it out and sew it.

Shouldn't take me very long eh?

OMG! Getting down on the floor to cut out the pattern is HELL on my knee. I had knee surgery and it creaks and pops and if I squat it kills me. So don't squat right?

Well, how do you get down there other than squat down? I suppose I could fall forward on my face and then roll over there. As long as I keep my leg straight it's mostly ok.

Secondly. Before I had kids I always had scissors. Scissors for paper and scissors for fabric. Not any more. I buy scissors, they disappear. Both kids take them without any thought of asking (because they know I'll freak out if they want to use fabric scissors on paper.) So they just don't even ask (What she doesn't know won't hurt her).

I had to cut my fabric out with a pair of these:

That's right, floral shears. While sharp, they don't cut fabric very accurately.

I need a safe to put all the things I want hidden: scissors, wirecutters, jewelry pliers, and yes, even my hairbrush.

So now I am going to ice my knee and think about sewing up those %$^&&% pants.

UPDATE 8:03 P.M. I made the pants, easy as pie. Well, 'cept I had to go buy some hemming lace because the rise was too long and since I measured from the rise down the pants became too short when I flipped down the top for the casing.

And I barely made it to the fabric store. Thought they closed at 7, they closed at 6! Had to wait 10 mins for the hub to leave so I got there at 5:55. Just enough time to race over, get it and pay.

We were supposed to go see the MIL tonight but she's hallucinating. So the boys took her to urgent care. They thought she might have a UTI but as of Friday the doc said there was nothing in her culture. I just called, she hasn't been seen yet but seems to be doing ok. Although I'm not sure if she thinks it's odd that she's at Urgent care in the night time.

So now, I'm at home and I'm hemming my pants. The pattern says to machine hem but I'm doing it by hand. There is something satisfying about hemming by hand. I think tomorrow I might write about sewing. Now to get that second leg finished so I can wear them tomorrow.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Painting in PhotoImpact

Since I don't have access to my old computer I don't have photoshop on this one. Which kind of sucks if I want to make painted graphics. I do have PhotoImpact 10 on this one and usually I just use it for vector type work.

But since I joined Facebook and I hate having my real face showing I've been making all kinds of profile pics to post as my profile. hahahha, they look nothing like me, they're just fun things I make.

Here are a couple that I (mostly) painted in PI 10. It behaves totally different than PS so I've had to get used to that. In some ways it's nicer to work with because the vectors are so easy to use that I can create something in hours instead of days.

Now that I have a few female faces I need something else to work on. Something not so pretty female. Went thru a sock monkey phase, now need other things. Must ponder.

My current profile pic.

Made this one as a sort of mermaid inspired one.

I haven't used this one yet. I just made it today.

Another I made tonight.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Laid me out

Yeowch. Last night I got a migraine. About 8 p.m. Big pain in my right eye (usually it's the left) and way nauseous. I haven't had a migraine like that in a long time.

I can usually function thru a migraine but this one, no way. I went to sleep. I hadn't fed the dogs and worried they wouldn't get fed. Was able to tell the hub to feed them and my voice sounded like I was all slurry or something. I also got up a couple of hours later to use the restroom and it was hard to walk.

Bad migraine.

I kept trying to think about what I ate yesterday: blackberries, sunflower seeds, a tangerine and a piece of quiche. Nothing in the food that might trigger a migraine. I didn't eat dinner but that's not unusual.

So I don't think it was something I ate. The weather was nice yesterday, nothing that would make me think it was sinus related.

My throat has been sore but I don't feel sick.

I guess I was just due for one or something.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Customer service

Weird day. I got a call today and she opened the conversation with: I don't know if I am calling the right place........
more silence
even more silence
Ok, well, tell me what the question is and I'll try and get you to the right place.

She started in complaining about a truck that parks in a lot and late at night it's running making a lot of noise. Every night. And last night not only was it making a lot of noise but it's also "emitting noxious fumes" and it looked like it might be cleaning the parking lot. Who cleans a parking lot she asks me.

I work in communications. Not in customer service, not in facilities, not in safety. While I am not in any of those depts, I can't just tell her I don't know and hang up or just transfer her because I'm not sure where to send this call. So I offer to have someone in Safety (or other dept if that is the wrong one) call her. But to do that I need her name and number.

Silence. More silence. Ahhhh, no, she tells me. Ummmm, why not, don't you want to talk to someone about this? Yes, but I don't want to become a target.

A target? Without going into detail about where I work, really our Safety dept is there to make sure we aren't using bad chemicals that mess up the environment. For gawks sake WE HAVE A SAFETY dept for sustainability! We do not manufacture any kind of anything, we are not a plant. We're actually non-profit.

It took some doing on my part to let her know she would not be a target. That's when I thought maybe she was wearing a tin foil hat. She agrees to give me her first name and her phone number. Fine with me. Sheesh.

I called Safety and the head haz mat guy laughed as I told him about the weird call. The call was weird, she was weird and we really do take these things seriously but as the guy said, "...since this lot is open to the public it might be someone parking their big rig in our lot or maybe someone is using drugs out there." He offered to call the right dept and take charge of the call. Whew. Good.

That's not all. I went to lunch. I'm minding my own business sitting at a table eating and reading a magazine. La la la.

Now, I don't work on the main property. I work across the street where we have about 100 employees located in a shopping mall but our offices are on the 2nd floor.

I hear a man say: Excuse me but could you help me? There are lots of homeless and/or someone deranged people walking around there, mostly harmless but you never know.

He's got a slight build, is middle-eastern with a heavy accent. He is not threatening so I ask him what he needs.

he needs someone to help him understand his cable bill. So I tell him what looks like is past due and what he needs to pay. No, that's not it. His bill is wrong because he should only pay 27.99 not 62.99 per month. Ohhhh, a contract dispute. I tell him he has to call the cable company. He asks if I will do it and help him. In a quick minute I think I'll just tell them what he wants and then hand the phone to him.

Noooooo, that's not how it went. I handled the whole thing for him. He maintained the sales guy said he's get one year at 27.99. CSR said promotions only last 6 months sometimes a year. Ok, so who's to say the sales rep didn't say one year? Well, if he looks at his last bill (the one I don't have in my hand) it would tell him that after 6 months he reverts to regular price (62.00 per month). IF he'd called the first month or so he might have been able to dispute it but not once it was past the 6 month mark. I asked him who looks at the bill to see if a sales man has lied to you? How was this guy (who is obviously foreign) to know he was to double check on what the saleman said? The CSR said this wasn't really a contract because it was a promotion. ehhh?

So I used that against him. If it's not a contract then there is no reason why the 6 month terms apply to him. Right? ahhhhhhhh, welll.....silence.

He offers up a new promotion (cuz the old one expired he said) and the new rate would be 37.99 per month. Only 10 per month more. I advised my new friend to take it and he did.

That took up 30 mins of my hour lunch. I got lots of thanks from the guy which was good payment even tho I used my customer service manager hat (which I took off years ago when I left that high paying job) it was a good boost that I can use my skills and get what I needed (even tho I wasn't really the customer) without being a jerk.

So many people think that being a jerk, being pissy will get you what you want. It usually doesn't. But being smart and polite will.

So it was a weird day wearing a customer service hat again...even if I wasn't paid for it.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Because I don't update this blog like I used to update my old blog

Notable things this week:

Stan, Doni's dad died this week. Sad in many ways, good in other ways. Late stage Alzheimers isn't pretty. It's never good when a parent dies and dying of a horrible disease is a terrible strain on the family.

The time change. I love, love more sunshine. But for some reason I'm soooo tired by about 8 p.m. Maybe it's age? OMG.

The son got accepted at one of the UC's he applied for...Yay. He won't find out about the other 2 for about a month. The daughter has not heard yet on her application.

The MIL is turning 85 next month. She seems more and more confused although nothing like last year. Mostly she is with it, sometimes she's just off tho. Probably meds. I heard a partial conversation between her and the hub and it was sort of wacky. I worry. I also worry about the kids losing their first family member. NOT that I think she's on her way out, but it is coming. It being either her not being herself, because of the drugs they treat Parkinsons or because she's just tired of living. Some days that's sort of what she hints at to me. The boys think I'm making too much out of her comments but I guess I'm more of a worrier or I'm just trying to get ready for the inevitable. I guess when you've lost parents already you get a little jumpy.

One of my acquaintences on FB got engaged this weekend. Yay for her. They are waiting til 2010 to get married.

Blogger is making me crazy. Since yesterday I cannot log in using the browser Opera. I must log in using Firefox. Pain in the buttinski.

I am out of books to read. Yikes! I NEED some books.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Just because I was bored

Well, I did get out of the house today. I drove to the fabric store, got fabric for some pants and a Simplicty pattern for a buck ninety nine. Really! All told for fabric, thread, elastic and pattern about 16.00. Pattern sales are good and so is getting your fabric for 5.99 a yard.

But I didn't sew up the pants. I got lazy once I got home. Went home and the energy just deflated. LOL.

Ok, well, it's a little past 7 and I have got to get my butt to the store.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Thats all, she wrote

I wasted a whole day today. I did nothing...nothing substantial.

I watered the flowers. I guess to the flowers that might be substantial. They were looking a little wilty. A lot of sun the last few days, no rain.

I read my book. This last week I've read 3 books (I'm sorta on a tear).

I played with making faux amber. Looks great but I haven't perfected it and I need some Flex stuff. Did not want to drive out to Michaels so I didn't.

Briefly entertained making a pair of pants. Again, no motivation to drive anywhere to get supplies.

Took a nap. Totally motivated to do that.

Woke up groggy.

Played a game of scrabble and lost. Sheesh. My stats are pretty good, I win 2/3 of my games. I play 2 peeps regularly. One is better than the other. I do need more players to challenge me tho.

That's all I did today.

The dress

The dress that the daughter chose for Prom.  

Thursday, March 5, 2009

The day

From a window above the gas station next door I spied an older woman. Maybe in her 60's. Short wavy gray hair, pink sweatshirt and sweatpants. One pantleg hiked up past her ankle, the other leg brushed the top of her white tennis shoe. She leaned back against the wall as if she were tired of sitting but still needed some support. She wasn't fat, she wasn't thin, she had the body of an elder woman.

This young guy, maybe in his 30's walked towards her. I could see her assessing him. He did not pay any attention to her. I imagined she looked at him thinking: Once I was young and you would have looked at me. And I could see the faint outline of what she was before. The young guy passed her and disappeared into the gas station mini-mart unaware she was projecting.

She leaned back and scuffed her tennis shoes into the cement.


Sometimes, no all times that I stand in the kitchen at work warming my coffee I look out over that parking lot. I know that every person there has a story. I don't always know what it is, but I know it's there. You can see a lot, in that one minute if you just take the time to look.


Today work was a bitch. A yelling fight down the hall that brought many people out of their cubes to listen. I watched from my desk. Mostly I listened. I only got involved when my boss came to me and said, "We need to do a better job in communicating XXX." I tore thru my email and found what I was looking for and then marched into her office to show her I didn't need that comment as my communication was as clear as the email I held in my hand. She did not apologize but took the email proof to someone else to call them on their error. I felt vindicated but not happy that a finger was pointed at me in the first place. An assumption was made even tho I had nothing to do with any of it.

Over the course of the day almost everyone came to my desk to tell me what happened from their POV. It was a crazy day. Glad I wasn't part of any of the crap.


And now I'm just plain tired.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Useless info

Today I'm cruising the LA Times Calender section from Sunday, March 1. A good article titled, "If I ran the NEA". I flip thru the section and look at the theater ads.

Every wonder what the heck Taylor Hicks is doing? I hadn't but I read the ad with his name in it.

"American Idol Winner Taylor Hicks is Teen Angel". He's doing Grease at the Pantages.

It's not something I have any urge to see or hear.

So I flip further into the section and read a reiew of "I'm Sorry You Feel That Way" a memoir of essays by Diana Joseph. I might want to read this one even tho I don't like memoirs for the most part.

I haven't read the Leonard Cohen story yet. I'm saving that for later, another time when I'm sitting here bored to tears.

I did read my horoscope (worthless and not worth the time to type it).

This is how I spent my afternoon.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Ya run into art sometimes

The grass did get cut and it's costing the hub some money.

Today I broke down and went to the uke thing. Usually I stay home and do a project or read or something. There isn't much for me to do at the uke thing (but listen) and while I love my ukester family and friends I hear it all the time. And it's almost the only time I have the house to myself with no music, no tv, no noise. Heaven.

I met a woman who is an artist and we chatted almost the entire time. An old friend came in and I was happy to see her. I haven't talked to her in years so it was big catch up time with her.

The artist woman mentioned that she just started learning how to bead with seed beads. ye haw. I showed her some of my work and we talked alot about materials, technique, etc.

One thing that she talked about was going to get her degree in art in her 30's and doing so took something from her. She said it became an exercise in theory, in thinking too much and she lost her edge of exploration. She said she'd advise anyone to NOT get their schooling in art, just do it. Interesting.

Interesting to hear how academics changes the essential edge in art. My old friend took her kids out of mainstream school and now one is a successful artist and the other is getting a recording contract. Neither of them went to college for their art.

I suppose this is not a discussion about whether one goes to school or not but whether one does art or doesn't.

Also, the hub had an old, old friend stop by. He's an illustrator (who I assume by the 2 books he gave the hub is making a living illustrating). I saw his websites today and he's got lots of stuff up. Sort of cartoony but he's making a living.

Kind of an interesting afternoon.