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Had a lovely Independence Day celebration! Went down to my Bro's house for grilled burgers and hot dogs. SIL made her potato salad and cole slaw. I brought what ended up being a rather expensive salad based on one my SIs made when we were in MA last August. It included baby spinach, romaine lettuce, blueberries, dried cranberries, raspberries (she used strawberries, I chose the other), glazed walnuts, and goat cheese, tossed in a light raspberry vinaigrette. (I saved the goat cheese on the side for those who might be turned off by it.) The salad was a big hit with most everyone - except Mr. Picky Eater Boy #2. I'll make it again sometime, I'm sure.

Then we went to Heritage Park for a concert by the Greenville Symphony Orchestra, followed by a fireworks show. We'd had some rain during the day, but early enough that the grass wasn't too wet, and the temperatures were cool. The conductor, Edvard Tchivzhel, is originally from Russia and defected 20 years ago. He has a lovely accent that made some of his between-the-pieces introductions rather humorous. They did the 1812 Overture with real Civil War cannons! Wow! Hearing those go off made the fireworks sound tame by comparison.

The Girl is now at their house for a full week - she doesn't have any classes, and wants to spend some time with her cousin. It will make life around here quieter, and the boys will have to pull a little more weight around the house.

All in all it was a good day with family... kinda like these things are meant to be.

A date!

Jan. 11th, 2010 02:40 pm
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Yes, hubby and I had a date today! It was his non-scheduled day (the USPS's polite term for "day off"); all the kids are back to classes--including the Girl--and he had a doctor's appointment this morning. He was gone when I got up, and didn't get home until nearly lunchtime. The doctor talked to him about his diabetes, and did a hemoglobin A1C test... and the number was in the normal range! Woot! Cause to celebrate! Which we did, at the Olive Garden, for their soup and salad deal.

On top of that, today was the debut of his comic strip on Comics Sherpa. It's a subscription website, as in I bought him a year's subscription so he could put his work up there. He feels that he'll get better exposure for his comic there than at ComicsGenesis, where he's had it posted for years. There will be fewer strips to compete with, and truthfully, I think his is one of the better drawn contributions. (Though definitely check out "What cats can and can't do". Very funny stuff!) He's writing and drawing some new strips for the new site, and is dropping his "Maximall" feature for now, concentrating instead on his comic space opera. He wants to put stuff up daily, but we'll see. It depends on what kind of time he has to draw in the evenings... and the rest of today.

So, here's introducing....


Space Time Funnies
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The Girl graduated today in a smooth, respectful ceremony--much more respectful than her cousin's, where people were booted for loud, obnoxious shouting and sounding off air-horns while names were being called. She was easy to spot in the processional--my SIL had French-braided her hair and the braid went all the way to her butt. We made sure we were on the aisle she said she would come down so we could get pictures. She slipped me the money from her first art sale--the principal bought her horse picture for $100! So I guess that technically makes her a professional now! I'm so proud of her!

My bro took some pictures, and I took some with her camera. One of my bro's pictures is so good, I'll be using it as her official picture this year, and get it printed up for the relations. Here are a few that I took.
cut for pictures! )

When we got home, we had a fabulous dinner with BBQ chicken (requested by the graduate), corn on the cob, two kinds of macaroni salad (one with tuna and one with salmon), five-cup salad, and decorated wacky cake for dessert. It was really good and everyone pitched in to help

The boys are now also officially out of school for the summer and I think everyone will sleep in tomorrow--for a bit. The animals don't like to wait for walkies and breakfast.
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Just a quick update to say that my parents are in town and we'll be busy with them and the graduation. So I won't be online much for the next few days.

It's good to see them and visit with them.
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Well, it's been a weird day... and a good one in a lot of ways.

We've been thinking about a laptop for some time now, and with the vacation coming up, the Hubby had expressed the idea that he doesn't want to see me go through computer withdrawal. So, we've been checking out some options to see what we can get for the least amount of money. We checked on Tiger Direct and Dell, first, but what I wanted cost more than I really wanted to pay. My brother got his through a "rent-to-own" place, so we were thinking about that option - though we knew it would be a monthly bill we really couldn't afford (and we'd end up paying a whole lot more in the long run). This week, a liquidation "show" was advertising laptops from $199. So we thought we'd check out the options a little more. 

One of the rent-to-own places advertised some "cash and carry" computers with laptops starting at $299, so we went there. No laptops, just a desktop available. The liquidation "show" charged $5 to enter; with my kids it would have been $15. This was conspicuously left off their ads, on TV, radio, and online. It smacked of a scam to me, so we didn't go in.

We headed for Best Buy, stopping at the local computer repair and building spot to check their prices. Nothing appealed to me. In the car, we started talking about shoes, and how much the kids (and I) needed them. The road Best Buy is on was busy, so we took a sudden detour into a shoe store, where I found sneakers for all the kids (the Girl found her favorites, in her size, and on clearance! She bought two pair!!). Then we went to the New Balance store to order sneakers for me (I had a coupon!). 

Then... we stopped in at Circuit City. Why not? It was right next to the New Balance store. Just to look, mind you. I wasn't seriously considering buying there; really I wasn't. But I found a computer without a price on it... and when I asked one of the sales people, he said, "Oh, that's the $399 one."

Ears perked up. He went to get the sign that should have been there. The specs were good: 2 GB RAM, 160 GB HD... the things I wanted where there. A Compaq Presario. The deal was I pay the sale price and get over $200 in mail-in rebates. I talked to the kids... don't ever talk to the kids on a decision like this! They all said, go for it! In three-part harmony. With their own reasons (like two of them playing Runescape at the same time). So, I took a deep breath, and plunged in. 

It's sitting on a chair, charging the battery. Vista will take time to learn, but I'm insisting on a mouse. Those little track pads and I don't get along.

Then Hubby came home. He wasn't upset at all about the choice, as long as we could still go out to dinner for our anniversary. Which we did. The Melting Pot - very classy fondue place. I'd made reservations, and when we got there, they'd left a cute anniversary card at the table for us. The food - particularly the cheese fondue and the chocolate fondue - was wonderful! Well, except for the jerk-flavored steak - I didn't care for that much. I loved the Greek Goddess and the Ginger Pear dipping sauces! Very expensive meal; far more expensive than we're used to. But it was worth it for the togetherness, and time alone.

So, an unusual and expensive day!

The rebates go out in the morning...
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Yes, it's our wedding anniversary today. Hubby and I have been married 21 years today. I can't say it's all been fun; we've certainly had our share of mistakes and troubles. But we love each other more than ever, and it's hard to believe it's been this long, really. 

Plans for tonight... I made reservations at the local fondue place; it's been years since we've been there.  Last year, things were so crazy that we couldn't go out and celebrate.  I've also been looking for an inexpensive laptop so I don't go into computer withdrawal during our vacation. 

Have things to do with my sites, so I'll get going on that. Also trying to create a banner. More later if the muse moves.

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And a happy Father's day for all the dads I know... including my own, my FIL, and my beloved Hubby!

As the title states, the Girl took the second of her College Board tests - the ACT - yesterday. She said it wasn't quite as hard as the SAT and she was glad she didn't have to write an essay. Hubby had Friday and Saturday off as his regular days off, and spent much of yesterday digging post holes for the fence, then repairing the spigot at the side of the house. Friday he went grocery shopping with me, which was nice.

Today we gave him cards and a gift: another Dr. Pepper t-shirt! It's getting to be a household joke - don't know what to get Dad? Get him a Dr. Pepper shirt! I think he has four or five of them now, including the long sleeved thermal one, and not including his sweatshirt style jacket. At least the one we got him today was different; it's two shades of gray instead of the sort of murky red that the others ones are. Next up: Dr. Pepper sleep pants...

Dinner was great! Boy #1 gets into cooking, and did the 5-cup salad for me yesterday, then heated the green beans (his choice of veggie). He also set up the skewers for our first try at grilled seafood: shrimp and scallop kabobs. Hubby did the actual grilling, but Boy #1 set everything up for him. Man, that was good! We used this seafood seasoning shaker stuff on the kabobs. Marvelous flavor addition. And since we thawed out ALL of the seafood, we get to do it again either today or tomorrow! Yum!

Now it's time for me to call my dad and wish him a Happy Father's Day. I don't know why, but both Mother's and Father's Days have just sort of crept up on me and caught me unawares. At least this time it was close enough to payday that I could get cards and gifts - and I put a little something in the packages for the moms, too. They probably should arrive by Tuesday.

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Don't know why except my muse has been in overdrive the past few days. Got up to chapter 20 in Turnabout early this week (late last week?) and started a new fic, Resolutions, which is a "chapter a day" fic. So far so good; three days, three chapters. Didn't know if I'd get to chapter three today the way I was trying to clean off my desk. Still have lots to go, but at least I got all my old bills off and shredded.

Serendipity is doing well, over 100 hits. And I've asked my husband if I can sign up for the optional pay services at ff.net as a Christmas present. He never knows what to get me and this is something I'd like to have. I think he's amenable.

Christmas was very nice, if money draining. I had already bought the kids their much desired GBA Pokemon games, but since things were tight, decided that the money my parents had sent and that my in-laws would eventually send would go toward those games. Hey, I just realized, I have Christmas money from my parents, too! I could put it toward the pay services. Well, it's a thought.

Christmas Eve was nice with Bro #2 and his wife and daughter coming. We worked hard and actually got the kitchen, dining room, bathroom, and living room looking nice and decorated well. The house smelled nice, too, unlike their place right now. I was really glad to host our family celebration here.

Got hubby the computer game Civilization III for Christmas and everyone is hooked on it (except me). The kids are even enjoying it, which surprised me. I also got him the second season of Rocky and Bullwinkle, which made him very, very happy.

Took the Girl and Boy #2 to the eye doctor yesterday. The Girl's prescription has changed, and both the doctor and she are talking contacts. But the best news was that the severe retinal scarring that Boy #2 had this time last year is GONE! His vision is as near to perfect as it's going to get and the difference in the two retinal pictures was amazing! I just have to praise God for it; when this came up I was afraid that his eyesight would be scarred forever. But God is better to us than we ever, ever deserve.

I'd better get to bed. I haven't decided whether or not to get up with hubby and take him to work again and I'd like to be awake while I drive.

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Sunny, brisk, and pleasant. The kids played relatively calmly together. And we had Boy #2's birthday party at the Chick-Fil-A in Taylors. All of the friends he invited from church were there and none of the friends from school. I guess I'm not surprised; I'm under the opinion that the kids at the elementary school don't tell their parents what they need to. I just hope that no one went to the more local Chick-Fil-A looking for us. He won this party from the local radio station and this is the store that sponsored it, so that's where we had to have it. But despite there only being half the boys there, it was a good party anyway. They went into the inside playground and ran around in there like maniacs, they ate the food, enjoyed the cake and ice cream. Boy #2 got nice gifts, the most exciting to him being the Game Boy Advanced that Mommy managed to track down.

We had the opportunity to go to one of two parties this evening, and ended up going to neither. I can't say I'm terribly disappointed; after supervising the birthday party, I was rather tired out. And I have Christmas cards to do as well as finishing the decorating. The kids and I will be working on it over the next few days. We've got the tree up and the lights on it, and that's as far as we got yesterday. Tomorrow we're going to my bro's and SIL's to celebrate my SIL's birthday. I have no idea what to give her. I guess I'll figure out something.

Don't know why I'm so down about the holidays. I think I need to get back working with Flylady. I was so much happier with my house in order. Sigh.

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I just spent Lord knows how long updating the journal with all the information about my Thanksgiving Day and when I go to spell check it, everything I have just typed goes up in smoke! What's the matter with this thing?

In any case, I'll just put a couple of things up now. One: our Thanksgiving Day was strange because my bro and SIL had a power outage and we had to move the celebration to my house. Everything worked out okay even though we had to wait until 7 p.m. to eat. I need to watch an episode of Tbirds today so I can finish up with chapter 16 of Turnabout. Serendipity is online at fanfics.org but I'm not sure I'm going to put it on fanfiction.net. I've got four chapters up and hopefully will get some more done soon.

So much for spell checking!

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Went to the Harvest Happening at church last night. The kids love this; it gives them a chance to run around and visit with their friends while riding the hayrides, eating hot dogs, and drinking hot cocoa. I wasn't sure if they were going to have it; the weather was damp and overcast all day. And boy, did I feel it! Hubby dropped us off and went back to the house to get a couple of folding chairs. Found out that some small creature had made a nest in the red one; there were bits of fluff in there and a couple of holes chewed through the nylon. Once he got back, we ate and then I sat down and didn't move for the rest of the evening. My feet were hurting so much! Dorothy and Sandra came over to chat with me, and I touched base with Debbie and Linda P. Said "Hi" to a lot of people and spoke with Sarajean at length. Have to make sure I get Valerie's wedding gift all wrapped and ready to go.

The kids had a good time. The Girl hung out with her good friend Anneliese, and Boy #1 hung out with Matthias and put odds and ends on the fire. Boy #2 dared Emmy to put something on the fire, and, knowing Emmy, she took him up on his dare. The boys ran around on the playground and I had to specifically tell Boy #1 to stay out of the creek. He told us later that there was a snapping turtle in the creek now.

We bought pumpkins for the kids to "carve" which means that they design a jack o' lantern and Daddy carves it (but they have to clean it out). He got two done the day before and did the last one last night. They are out on the steps now. The Girl's is at the top as usual, with Boy #1's just below it, and Boy #2's at the bottom. Here are some pics:

We'll put candles in them tonight.

The Hubby should be home soon and I'll either go out and get milk and candy to send him out to run the errand. I'm very tired; I didn't get to sleep until 4:30 a.m. with my feet the way they were and didn't get up until 11:00 a.m. Hubby always tells me to wake him so he can massage my feet with Aspercreme, but he needs his sleep, too, and always seems so groggy and grouchy when I ask him to do it. Tonight I'll take my anti-depressant around 9 and see if that helps me get to bed sooner.

[livejournal.com profile] funky_cheeseArtisiticRainey finished the pics of my character's kids for IR:TNP and sent me a picture of herself in her beautiful dress. She looked so very lovely! And she did a great job on the portraits, too. I have one more character to develop a description for: my character's mother.

I keep looking for the van, and I'm very much afraid that Hubby has stopped at the library. Well, it closes at 6 tonight so he won't be there very long. Now to get some housework done.

Happy Halloween, everyone!

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... so today will have to do. It's raining here to beat the band. I think that the vestiges of Frances finally arrived today and are pouring down outside. The girl is not feeling well; said she felt nauseous this morning, so I kept her home. She's really not one to fake such things and I'd much rather have her at home to rest and barf than have to go out to the school to get her because she's barfed all over herself there. Note: she hasn't produced yet....

Spent Labor Day at my bro's and SIL's house. It was nice if you don't count the grill nearly blowing up on us. Flames were shooting out the bottom, melting a couple of knobs and heading down the hose toward the propane tank. Fortunately, I think my husband finally woke up and smelled the Dr. Pepper and told bro what was happening and they were able to turn it off at the tank. SIL made brownies and fudge sauce: chocolate overload! Mmmmmm. It was a good day all around: I woke up yesterday to four review bots in my mailbox, two for Mr. Sunshine and two for Turnabout. Makes me want to write more on Turnabout. Trying to get a plot together for a one-shot Parker fic, too, in answer to my own challenge at fanfics.org.

Found out for the first time that the folks are flying down on Thursday, which doesn't give me much time to clean house. We got some stuff done in the living room on Sunday, but there's a awful lot more to do. I've been working in the bathroom and folding clothes so far this morning. Just taking a break now before plunging in again. I'll be glad to see them; I think they'll be amazed at how big the kids have gotten, especially the girl.

Be back later if I can.

November 2016

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