A heron scaring the ducks

Oct. 19th, 2017 01:20 pm
yourlibrarian: Penguin Baby (NAT-PenguinBaby-americangrl69)
[personal profile] yourlibrarian posting in [community profile] common_nature
We recently had a visit from a heron. It was strolling around our end of the lake.

Read more... )

a day of less argh :)

Oct. 18th, 2017 07:47 pm
edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over water (Default)
[personal profile] edenfalling
I triumphed over the never-ending stack of leases, after which it was a slow-ish day. I showed two apartments and I think some of the people who went on the tour will come in tomorrow to rent an apartment, so that's nice.

I also got a raise! Only a small one, but even so. And what's nicer is that it's retroactive to June 1 (because our owner is an organized human being, really, I swear...) so I have a paper check I get to cash tomorrow. Yay unexpected extra money!

In news from my other job, today I finished one of my two tax update courses, and have registered for three live in-person continuing education classes, one of which is tomorrow night. The other two are next week, and I need to ask Miss Cactus whether she's willing to swap my Tuesday shift for her shift on either Monday or Friday, since the courses all start at 6pm and I work until 7pm on Tuesdays. (Failing that, I will ask Mom Boss if I can leave early that day.)

Continuing education requirements for tax preparers are 18 credit hours per year, allocated as follows: 13 federal tax law, 2 ethics, and 3 tax updates. You can, of course, take more than the minimum. I have currently finished 2 credits of tax law and 2 credits of tax updates. The three live courses will knock off another 9 credits of tax law, I have the second 2 credit tax update course ready to do whenever (probably Friday or Saturday), and the ethics and another 2 credits of tax law won't be too hard to knock off.

Then, of course, there are the New York state requirements, but I will deal with those in November. :)

(no subject)

Oct. 18th, 2017 08:02 am
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[personal profile] the_rck
Today is going to be kind of stressful. I have to meet Cordelia at school when the school day ends because the choir fundraiser stuff is coming in. I didn't see any way for her to be able to carry it home on the bus, so the best option seems to be me going there and then us getting a cab back.

Some of her teachers have requested Kleenex donations, so I can take those at the same time.

Cordelia has an appointment at 5:45, so we won't have time to waste on the way home. I wish the bus website was actually reliable about the bus that goes between Skyline and downtown. There are two or three different route variants (I've seen the A and C. I'm assuming there must be a B).

We'll get home from the appointment just in time to have friends over at 7:00.

I need to figure out a way to get myself to bed earlier in the evening. Scott and Cordelia really, really want me to watch TV with them which pushes getting ready for bed to 9:00 at which point, Cordelia generally wants to shower. I think that what I need to do is to get a second tube of toothpaste and to keep that and my toothbrush and bite splint in the kitchen so that I don't have to wait for her to get to done to be able to deal with that bit of my routine.

I still have the problem that 8:00 or 9:00 is the point when my writing brain suddenly turns itself on with great enthusiasm. Given that I can't get my body to nap, I have a choice between sleep and writing that's pretty frustrating.

wherein Liz has a day of argh

Oct. 17th, 2017 10:43 pm
edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over water (Default)
[personal profile] edenfalling
So my work day started with two tenants coming in to say they'd locked themselves out of their bathroom, continued through twenty million leases to process, and ended with another tenant coming in literally one minute before closing to say they thought they had to fill out a form, maybe...? which was actually three forms, one of which I had to generate specially and then highlight the relevant sections because nobody ever fills it out correctly otherwise. *headdesk*

I mean, at least I will get paid for the extra twenty minutes I stayed? But holy gods, argh argh and above all, argh.

(The bathroom, incidentally, was an easy fix. All it takes is a judiciously applied paperclip! But I had to go apply the fix in person because apparently tenants are bad at comprehending verbal explanations at 9am when they really need to pee. (To be fair, I probably would be as well.))

...

On the bright side, I got a two-hour tax continuing education course finished before Mom Boss dumped the never-ending leases on me, so that's something.

(no subject)

Oct. 17th, 2017 12:18 pm
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
I must have done something yesterday, but I can't for the life of me remember anything. Somehow, time is getting away from me.

I posted a story for [community profile] weissvsaiyuki today. I still have four WIP that I would love to complete for the challenge, but I don't know if I'll manage any of them.

Title: One More Folded Sunset
Fandom: Weiss Kreuz
Rating: T
Pairing: Crawford/Schuldig, background Crawford/Manx
Tags: Implied/referenced rape/non-con, Implied/referenced torture, Alternate universe - canon divergence, Alternate universe - dark, Ambiguous/open ending, Amnesia

//Brad, where the fuck are we?// Once he was sure he had a connection to Brad’s mind, he opened his eyes. He felt safer that way.

//Schuldig? I wasn’t— No. That’s not true.// Brad sounded uncertain, fragmented even, in a way that scared Schuldig even more than the odd landscape and his inability to stop walking. //The hill doesn’t look that big, but it will probably take you another half an hour to get here. Things… stretch. Sort of. You’re being watched. She can’t hear when we talk like this, but she’s watching, and she’ll hear if you speak out loud. I’d come to meet you, but… I can’t. I’ll explain when you get here.//

Schuldig knew Brad well enough to know when he was lying. You’re not going to explain anything. Well, we’ve been there before. I’ll get it one way or another. He rubbed his face with one hand. Why don’t I remember anything to explain this?

The story at AO3.

(no subject)

Oct. 16th, 2017 08:34 am
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
I did eventually get to sleep last night. I ended up taking a second Halcion. I probably got about four hours of sleep. I'm going to have to find a way to nap today, or I'll end up too tired to manage anything myself by the time I need to eat dinner.

I'm not sure why my body wasn't willing to sleep. Scott and I took a moderately long walk, a bit more than an hour, around north campus yesterday. It would have been longer, but it started to pour, and we had to run for the car. I need to hack ten more new to me Ingress portals in order to get the silver badge for that. I'm entirely sure that I can find those on north campus. I just need to drag myself out there for it.

Maybe later today if I manage a nap.

Scott and Cordelia are both having trouble getting their phones to charge. Scott has to wiggle the connection until the charging starts and then not jostle it at all or it will stop. Cordelia's just having problems with the cord in the living room. Scott really needs to replace his phone, but we can't afford it.

Wet weekend and the Water Temple

Oct. 15th, 2017 08:47 pm
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[personal profile] heliopausa
We have been having very heavy rains of later, in short bursts - so heavy that it seems amazing that so much could have been up there to start with.  Of course, this means floods and landslides and much loss and sadness in the mountain areas, but here in the city there's very little flooding, and blessedly no buildings collapsing that I've heard of (not that I'd expect them to, but the city is built on river delta land, not on solid rock, so it's possible, especially where people might have built their home themselves, piecemeal). 
The wetness has been a pleasure to the three quiet toads who live in our garden, at least.  They are Big, Middle and Little, and like to lurk under damp things - leaves or the edges of the old lily-bowl.  (Garden is a bit of exaggeration - there's a small paved yard, and in the corner a quadrant of earth, about a metre/four foot in radius.  Not big, but big enough for three toads.)

There was a break in the weather on Sunday, and we took advantage of it to take a walk through the back lanes, and as it happened, found ourselves passing the Water Temple complex - it's not a big complex, but one with a long history, and with two temples, and multiple side-altars and shrines.  It was marking a great day of some sort - the day wasn't in itself especially auspicious in the general calendar, so I think possibly the festival ceremonies were for particular community or family occasions, such as an upcoming marriage - there was a young couple front-and-centre in the side temple - but then again it's just over a week since the birthday/translation day of Princess Steadfast Jade, who is linked (if I've got my history and translations right) to this temple, and possibly it was just her celebration happening late.  (It may have been two different events just happening in both temples at the same time, too.)

Anyway, everything was very splendid, with big paper horses and paper elephants and slightly smaller paper boats with dragon prows, and multitudes of paper guards and attendants, some with swords and some with cymbals, and of course real people as well...  :)   Most of the horses were lined up in front of the central temple, but the side temple had one horse and one elephant and one boat; the paper attendants were too many to count (ie while behaving properly, as opposed to standing up and craning!) in both places.  In the central temple there were preparatory prayers going on when we first arrived, and then later the shaman/priest began to embody different personas, with different costumes and characteristics - the Forest Princess who dances, the General who declares, with swordplay, his determination to see justice, and so on.  Meanwhile, in the side-temple, a scholar/priest was reading and chanting and striking a wooden bell, while people sat quietly and listened. 

And here are some photos!  :)


The elephant stands proudly with eight horses in front of the central temple.  Every horse has a groom, but the sage elephant stands alone. :)





Mandarins and Generals and advisors as attendants in the side temple.  (The thing that looks like an airconditioning duct is a snake - snakes wind around through the rafters.)




Musicians and ladies-in-waiting and a Queen (?) stand in attendance on the left-hand side of the side-temple; the side-altar is like a cave because the Mother-Goddess devotion is very nature-linked, very much seen in terms of mountains and forests.





(no subject)

Oct. 15th, 2017 11:32 pm
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[personal profile] the_rck
In spite of taking Halcion fully two hours ago, I haven't gotten anywhere near sleep so far tonight. I feel physically wide awake, so for once it's not my brain running in circles to keep me awake. I have no idea what to do. If it wasn't almost midnight and rainy, I'd go for a walk or something. There isn't really anything I can do with physical energy while everyone else sleeps.

I think I do have to get out of bed. It's a terrible idea, but it's better than lying here, looking at the ceiling.

Beach dwellers

Oct. 15th, 2017 02:18 pm
yourlibrarian: Sunse Dolphins (NAT-SunsetDolphins-niki_vakita)
[personal profile] yourlibrarian posting in [community profile] common_nature
I just returned from a trip which included a brief stay at a beach. There were a number of residents there, including tiny clams that would appear and then vanish with each wave in and out. (We tried to take pictures but they were tough). On the other hand, these guys were everywhere:

(no subject)

Oct. 15th, 2017 01:45 pm
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[personal profile] the_rck
I ended up going with Scott to take Cordelia and her friend to the restaurant. The plan was that I'd wait wherever he and I ended up for dinner until after he took the 3-4 kids to the dance. We had trouble finding a restaurant and ended up at Seva, a vegetarian place. We tend not to go there because my food options are severely limited by needing to avoid tomatoes and peppers and walnuts and peanuts and eggs.

I ended up ordering a cup of soup and two sides, asparagus and sweet potato fries. The soup wasn't edible by me, and Scott didn't care for it either. The menu said 'butternut-apple bisque,' and I couldn't taste either apples or butternut squash. It went more toward the savory end of flavor, and I couldn't place the herbs, so I didn't force myself to eat more than a couple of spoonfuls. I was concerned that the soup contained something that would make me sick. The restaurant ended up removing the soup from our bill. We hadn't asked them to. I'd have been cranky about spending $4 on a cup of inedible soup, but I did order it, so...

I also got dessert, banana cheesecake. It was recognizably cheesecake, but even though I could see banana chunks, I couldn't taste the banana at all. Scott tried it and also couldn't taste the banana, so I'm again puzzled. I think that, when something with a particular flavor is in the name, it's weird not to be able to taste even a trace of that in the food.

Cordelia's only comment about the dance was that it was loud and that the music was terrible. I'm not sure if the latter refers to sound quality or to song choice.

Scott's parents have reserved a house for a family vacation next summer. They didn't consult with us about potential conflicts first but did consult Scott's brother and sister, so we're a bit puzzled. We won't know for at least another month whether or not Scott can get that time off, and I'm pretty sure that the timing will mean that Cordelia couldn't do choir camp even if she wanted to. (Though Scott thinks the location of the house is actually kind of near Interlochen.) Scott's parents have promised to 'help' us with the costs but want us to tell them how much we can afford to pay. Which is both reasonable and burdensome because Scott finds it shaming.

To be honest, I'm not sure we can afford anything but gas money and our share of the groceries. I'm not convinced that Scott will be able to tell his parents that. He was able to say, months ago, that we couldn't go because we couldn't afford it. Now, we can't just not do it. We have to figure out what we can scrape together and ask for the rest. I understand why Scott's parents want everyone there. They're both 75 (and will be 76 next summer), and their oldest grandchild is 18 and in college. The odds of getting him to come to future family vacations aren't really all that great. The odds of Scott's parents being up to such a vacation in three years, five years, ten years... Yeah.

Is it weird that I feel that 'tell us what you can afford, and we'll cover the rest' is more embarrassing than 'because you can't afford it, we'll cover the expenses'?

Femslashex reveals

Oct. 15th, 2017 05:42 pm
el_staplador: (Default)
[personal profile] el_staplador
I got two fantastic original fic gifts:

Firstly, this dark, atmospheric, wartime story with layers upon layers and stunningly good style:

J'attendrai (1479 words) by Anonymous
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Original Work
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: 1940s Resistance Fighter/Glamorous Wartime Singer
Characters: 1940s Resistance Fighter, Glamorous Wartime Singer
Additional Tags: Love in a Dangerous Time
Summary:


The sadness of having to wait, the sweetness of having someone to wait for...



And then this, which is just sheer fun:

The Pirate and the Mermaid (8628 words) by Anonymous
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Original Work
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Pirate/Mermaid
Characters: Original Female Character(s)
Additional Tags: Mermaids, Pirates, Supernatural Elements, Cultural Differences, Shipwrecks
Summary:

"Of course," said Charlie pettishly. As if she was just a stupid kid, asking stupid questions. "How was I supposed to know? You're the first mermaid I've ever met."


"Well, you're the first woman-with-legs I've ever met!" snapped the mermaid.

edenfalling: headshot of a raccoon, looking left (raccoon)
[personal profile] edenfalling
[personal profile] rosaxx50 said: I would love something for Karen & Foggy & Matt (or ot3!) + libel! Something about how vigilante/law/media deals with a case of libel in some way. (400 words exactly)

Note: Three months late, but look! I wrote a thing! :D Also, insofar as this has a canon setting, it's in a happy future sometime post-Defenders.

With Only Mild Complaining )

And now I will go eat lunch. :)

(no subject)

Oct. 14th, 2017 05:22 pm
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
I tried taking two Halcion tablets last night (adding up to 0.5 mg) and slept well. Barring a couple of trips to the bathroom, I didn't get up until around 10:00. I even slept through Scott getting out of bed. I'm not sure how much of that was complete exhaustion and how much was the medication.

Scott has managed to repair the bathroom sink. It wasn't exactly broken, but the stopper had broken, so we had a gaping hole down the drain. Now, we have a strainer in place. There's no longer a way to seal the basin, but that's not generally something we've wanted, so I don't think it will matter.

Skyline's homecoming dance is tonight. Cordelia's going with a group of friends. They're planning to get dinner first at some place that we've not previously heard of. Scott's driving them to the restaurant and from there to the high school. He's not supposed to have dinner in the same place as they do, but he needs to stay nearby in order to retrieve them when they're done. I can't go along because there will be four kids to wedge into the car somehow. Scott plus three is comfortable. Scott plus four is... feasible. Scott plus five is impossible.

It's a pity because it would be really nice for me and Scott to be able to get dinner out together tonight. The dance starts too late for that to be feasible after it begins. Him coming home to get me or to bring carryout is theoretically possible, timing wise, but we have no idea how long the kids will take, and I think it would be good if Scott were nearby in case one of the kids doesn't have enough cash (they're 13/14 years old).

The dance is 'semi-formal,' and tickets are $28 each (not per pair but each). I have no idea what that money is paying for. Gold plated paper plates? Silk ribbons instead of paper? It's not like they're paying a band.

help meeeee

Oct. 14th, 2017 01:15 pm
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[personal profile] alexseanchai
My brother's birthday is in three days. He is asking for audiobooks. I am going to venture the guess that podcasts would also be welcome (though I suspect podfic would not). He is offering zero guidance on which ones. I have no idea what books he already owns in any format, except that he owns a very great deal of Catholic nonfiction in hardcopy, and also some Tolkien. I asked him in September to name a few genres he wants to read in or subjects he wants to be educated on so I would have a place to start. (I know Catholic theology on the "I went to Sunday school with the parish until I got confirmed" level. He knows Catholic theology on the "I have a Master's in theology from Franciscan" level.) He has not responded.

What should I get him, or recommend to him? The less money I need to spend, the better. (Though I assume pointing him at Amazon Music's $0.00 dramatic reading of the KJV is cheating.)

cat fight

Oct. 13th, 2017 10:03 pm
edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over water (Default)
[personal profile] edenfalling
I heard the most godawful noises coming from outside my window around 9:30pm, whereupon I went outside and discovered Wilson (my diagonal neighbors' cat) in a standoff on the porch railing with an unfamiliar tailless, all-black cat.

Wilson then dived off the railing and under Upstairs Neighbor E's bicycle, where he proceded to make continuous upset noises while the stranger prowled silently along the railing and scented my windowframe.

I attempted to see if Wilson wanted rescue, but he swiped at me. Then I attempted to shoo the stranger cat away, but it swiped at me in turn.

Wilson was very polite about the swiping -- soft paws, no claws. The stranger made me bleed in seven places.

I went inside to clean and disinfect my wounds, after which I returned to see if Wilson was feeling any better/safer. The stranger cat was gone, but Wilson was still on edge, and swiped at me even though I approached very slowly and never got within two feet of him. So I went back inside again and applied a bandaid to the one cut that hadn't stopped bleeding.

When I returned to the porch a third time, Wilson was once again feeling relaxed. He came into the foyer as I opened the door, meowed in greeting, and asked for petting. So I scratched behind his ears for a couple minutes, before he decided it was time to head upstairs and find his people.

I've heard similar noises from the porch occasionally over the past month, and now I wonder if this is an ongoing conflict between Wilson and the stranger...

(no subject)

Oct. 13th, 2017 01:50 pm
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[personal profile] the_rck
I slept really, really terribly last night. Every time I started to fall asleep, I had reflux issues. I had had some vanilla ice cream, and that made the reflux not be of the burning kind. I just kept coughing and jerking upright. Sleeping on an incline doesn't help. Not even sleeping upright helps. The trigger seems to be me starting to fall asleep. That somehow makes something in my body relax enough that the reflux starts.

I know perfectly well that the thing I need to do when that starts is to go and sit upright for 30 to 60 minutes before I try to lie down again. It's just very hard to get myself to do that when I'm utterly exhausted and desperate for sleep. I think I finally managed to sleep about 3 a.m., and I really couldn't get myself out of bed when it was time to get up to help Cordelia get ready for school. I have no idea what would have happened if Scott hadn't been able to step in at that point. I'd probably have managed somehow. I just have no idea how.

Scott came back to bed after walking Cordelia to the bus stop. We both slept another four hours. I'd have liked to sleep longer, but I had a horrible headache and knew that I needed to get up to take my medications. I still have the headache, and I can't tell if it's due to lack of sleep, due to menstrual stuff, due to stress, or due to something else I haven't thought of. I've taken naproxen and have had caffeine. I've also eaten. Cordelia has an appointment in two hours, so I don't think that a nap is going to be possible.

Looking for brainstorming help

Oct. 13th, 2017 12:39 pm
the_rck: (Default)
[personal profile] the_rck
I'm looking for brainstorming and revision help with some Weiss Kreuz fics for [community profile] weissvsaiyuki. I'm not sure how much canon knowledge is necessary for any of these. They're all Schwarz-centric, so there's less canon to work with (I don't even try to be consistent with the drama CDs and manga, just the anime).

One is either T or M rated and complete, but I think the ending is weak and possibly too rapid. I'd like a second opinion on it. The story is dark. I'm trying to end with a glimmer of hope, but that's one of the things I'm not sure even vaguely works.

The second is somewhere between one third and three quarters done. I'm at a point where I have to make a story decision and can't get myself to because none of the options quite work for me. I'm pretty sure I'm missing something. I'm not sure where to put the rating on this one-- Probably T for now with the possibility of it going upward depending on where it goes from here. Right now, it's gen (but could be read as Crawford and Schuldig being involved off screen. Or not), and I'm not planning to change that, but...

The third is E rated and potentially squicky due to noncon. I think it's half done. At about 2000 words in (out of about 3400 currently), it took a sudden left turn from PWP into character development that I think is not consistent with the first part of the story. I'm just too close to the story to be able to tell for sure, and I want a second opinion on that and on whether I should axe the character development to go back to the PWP or rewrite the first part to support the character development.

Celexa update

Oct. 12th, 2017 10:13 pm
edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over water (Default)
[personal profile] edenfalling
I started my increased dose of Celexa on Sunday. For whatever reason, it is not technically possible to get a 30mg pill of Celexa (or generic), so our choices were either take one-and-a-half 20mg pills, or take three 10mg pills. Splitting pills is a pain, so my doctor and I went the second route. The pills are so tiny, I always feel like I'm going to lose them in the gaps between my fingers no matter how tightly I press them together. *hands*

Anyway, I have been absurdly exhausted this week, but as always I am unsure how much of that is the medication and how much is my generally terrible sleep patterns. However, I have noticed that I've been sleeping... not badly, exactly, but more lightly/less deeply? Also having more weird dreams, or at least more weird dreams that I remember because I'm just awake/aware enough to notice them as they happen. And I am pretty sure that part is a medication side-effect.

Anyway, I am trying a new policy of going the fuck to bed by 11pm every night. I have not had great luck imposing bedtimes on myself in the past, but I think part of the problem is that my previous bedtime attempts have been more in the nature of "if you are still up at this hour, something has gone Terribly Wrong and you must initiate Emergency Sleep Protocols immediately" and by the time I've reached that point, I am so tired I can't make good decisions anymore so I just stay up even later. I figure 11pm is early enough to avoid that pitfall, and also making my cutoff happen before midnight avoids another mental pitfall of "oh well it's tomorrow already; I might as well stay up another hour." So fingers crossed, I guess.

...

Tangentially, today I failed to give blood for the second month in a row, because I am a little bit under the Red Cross's minimum acceptable hemoglobin levels -- not to the point where I'm medically anemic, but still. I wonder if that might be a medication side-effect as well, and/or if it's contributing to my tiredness. I have been having some minor gastrointestinal issues that could mean I'm not getting as many nutrients from food as usual, in which case supplements might be worth looking into...
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