Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sweatin' It

I've been over weight for a long time. And when I say over weight, I'm not talking like a cheerleader who thinks she's fat, I'm talking over weight as in I'm seriously unhealthy. I'm not so unhealthy that I could drop dead at any moment. My blood pressure is fine and as far as I know my cholesterol is also, but there are some things I find physically hard to do.

Lately I've been thinking more and more about getting married. Yes, I know I call Brian my hubby, but we're not technically married. In all sense of the word we are, we just don't have that little piece of paper to make it all official. I've been married and divorced once before so I hadn't really worried about us getting married and never really thought about having any sort of wedding, but lately I have been. I have all these ideas running through my head of what our wedding should be like and what I want to do. Some simple and cheap yet elegant. But then I look in the mirror and I see my very round, curvy and some what lumpy figure. I'm not ashamed of my body, but I look at myself and I realize that the type of dress I have in mind, while it probably wouldn't look bad on me, wouldn't look its best either. What dress can really look its best when your stomach goes out farther than your boobs? Mine really isn't out farther, but they are about the same sadly. I also have a rather large shelf on my backside.

So I made a decision over the weekend. I want to lose at least 50 pounds by my birthday in March. That is about 3.5 months away. That wouldn't put me anywhere near my ideal weight, but it would be a very good start and only leave me maybe another 70 to go after that. And yes you added correctly, I really need to lose about 120 pounds to really be at a healthy weight for my age and height. It would put me at around 170 pounds as I'm around 290 right now.

With my mind made up I put my plan into action yesterday. It's much to cold to really be able to spend any real time outside and I spend so much time just sitting at my desk that its not doing me any good. So I did a quick Google search and found some easy to do Desk Exercises. These are some simple stretches, bends and lifts that I can do in my desk chair here at work. It's just some basic strength training, but I know it will be helpful. Then when I got home last night I turned on the Wii and put in our Sport Resort game. We don't have Wii Fit so this is the best I can do. I started out with the rowing thinking that would be a work out, but I was disappointed. So I moved on to the cycling and it wasn't any better. Feeling a bit let down that I wasn't going to be able to get a real workout with this game I gave the basket ball a shot. The game is just a 3-point shootout. There is a time limit and 25 balls that I have to shoot from a 3 point range on the court. This game got me moving! Even though all I really had to do was swing my arm for the shot, I found myself getting my entire body involved just like I was actually on a basket ball court. I was using both arms and found myself actually jumping like I was making an actual shot. I spent about 20 minutes playing several rounds of this before I was all sweaty and ready to rest.

Another change I've decided to make to go along with this exercise is that I'm going to try to no longer drink any soda. I was only drinking Diet Sierra Mist but I've decided that I should try to stick to water. And since water can be really boring I've bought some flavored drink mix to help keep it interesting.

So far I'm succeeding with my new routine, but then again its only been 1 day. Lets see if I can keep it up and drop the pounds. Maybe I should by a scale to know for sure though, lol  

November Chatter

I'm going to do my best to make this blog work out for me as I really love the system. I'll be moving in my other blog posts from other areas to here as time allows. I don't have all that many, but just enough for it to be time consuming.

Edit: I've now moved in all my old posts that were located on another system. I've added them while here at work so I can't make sure they posted ok. If you have any time please give them a looksie and let me know if anything doesn't look right :)

Thanks so much! *hugs*

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The End of the World

Today marks the start of a whole new chapter in the World of Warcraft. Deathwing makes his devastating return and the world as we know will be forever changed. I'm disappointed in myself for getting distracted last night and not thinking about going and taking some screen shots of places that will be changing.

The hubby and I ran ZG for the last time yesterday. No mounts for either of us and I didn't even think to take any screen shots. ZG was my first ever raid. My rogue had just gotten to level 60 and the guild I had joined happened to be a raiding guild. I had to practically beg for an invite and they eventually let me in. Her gear was crap, but I gave it my all. I died so many times as I had no idea what I was doing. What I remember best is getting drunk from the spider bites and not being able to see anything as I didn't know about the full screen glow effect and that it could be turned off. I also died so many times to the bat riders when they would blow up. I only ever saw the tiger mount drop one time in all the times I've run the place. It dropped during on of our raids back in vanilla. One of the mages in the guild had a standing offer to by the mount for 5k gold to the winner of the role. Of course the winner took it as 5k was a fortune back then. In the last few weeks a person would of had to pay a good 100k for the mount. As of today neither the tiger nor the raptor will be available.

There are a lot of other things I'm going to miss. All my first characters were dwarves and I remember questing in Loch Modan and being amazed by the dam there. Such a huge majestic thing and today it will be destroyed.

Sadly I don't even know what all changes are going to take place. I know of many of them, but I'm sure there are more. I'm going to have to check out Moonglade today. The hubby and I met in the game and in celebration of our one month together we held an in game wedding. Our Wedding was held in "our spot" in Moonglade by the side of the lake under a large tree. All our friends were there and it was perfect. Sadly I lost a lot of those screen shots when my old computer was stolen several years ago. I hope Moonglade doesn't change to much. I don't want to lose our spot.

Another thing I'm going to miss are seeing the trolls on the side of the mountain between Darkshore and Felwood. I've always wanted to go and party with those trolls as they always seem to be having a party and it looked to be such a good time. I hear they will no longer be there. Their village will be burned to the ground. With the addition of Old World Flying I was hoping to finally go and visit them, but alas that will never happen.

The world is going to be shattered. New enemies will be fought. And the past will be an even more distant memory for those of us who have been playing since the beginning. For good or bad a new world is upon us.

Monday, November 22, 2010

100 Mounts!

I really feel that this acheivement deserves its own post rather than thrown in at the bottom of another. The reason it was done that way was because that post was originally posted on a community site and I didn't want to make 2 posts at the same time. But here I can do what ever I want so here goes!

It took me ages to finally get this mount! I love it to bits and I've been wanting it for AGES!
Why did it take me so long you might ask? Well my beloved shaman, my main, is cursed it seems. The RNG Gods hate her with a passion when it comes to mount drops. She only has 2 mounts that come from drops, the Bronze Drake and the Black Twilight Drake from OS10 3D. Not another single dropped mount does she have.

I've bought the Chopper, the Travelers Tundra Mammoth, the Hodir Exalted White Mammoth. I have all the Argen Tournament mounts save the Argent Hippogryph though I intend to get it at some point. I've done the daily for the White Polar Bear since the first week of Wrath and nada. I've cracked open so many Oracle Mysterious Eggs that I could feed all of Azeroth for year. She's gone through all of her beer supply fishing and still doesn't have a Turtle. I've not seen the Zulian Tiger since vanilla and I've never seen the Raptor from there and they will be gone after today. I've killed Kael in Magister's Terrace nearly 90 times and I've only seen the White Hawkstrider 2 times and friends won those. I've never seen the Anzu mount drop. Baron hates me too.

I'm completely dumbfounded at how seriously bad her luck is when it comes to mounts. But at least the grind is over and she'll have a brand new set of mounts to pick up when Cata drops in a few weeks. I'm just hoping they don't add another level to the acheivement or I'll probably scream!

Turkey Time!

So this week I decided that I really wanted to make a turkey. I have no idea why I just did. It could be because on Monday at the store I saw some injectable marinade that was Roasted Garlic and Herb and it sounded super yummy and I really wanted to use it. So the hubby and I went shopping Friday night for a turkey and some yummy extras to go with it so we could make our own little Thanksgiving meal for just the 2 of us. Sure we're going to be spending Thanksgiving with my family and there will be plenty of turkey and all sorts of food there, but I wanted it now!

Starting off with the shopping the hubby convinced me before hand that we should really just do a breast as they're smaller and there wouldn't be so much waste. Well we get to the store and the breasts are more expensive than the whole turkies! So we buy a whole one anyways though we tried to go small and bought a 12 pound one. We also got the marinade, potatoes for mashed potatoes, stuffing and cresant rolls along with the various stuff needed to go along to make each of those things.

We left the turkey to thaw over night in the fridge but it didn't go fast enough and had to give it a nice long hot water bath on Saturday. By mid afternoon it was ready for the marinade. Poor turkey got poked full of holes but it was well worth it. We put it in a large bowl and covered it with foil and back into the fridge it went to sit over night and soak in all the flavor.

Sunday finally comes and I'm all excited! We're making a turkey! The hubby laughed at me all day because I was excited and he couldn't figure out why. Honestly I don't know why I was either but I wanted turkey! We get it in the oven inside of a cooking bag which the hubby has never used before and it kinda kept it from getting really brown but it did keep it tender and juicy! Sadly the skin stuck to the bag and came off the turkey before I could get any nice picutres, but I did get a couple!

Doesn't this look super yummy? We ate so much and we still have tons of left overs!

Our first adventure in turkey making was a complete success! I'm so happy and we'll be eating yummy turkey all week long!

Monday, November 15, 2010

A Wonderful Week!

I don’t normally blog about my World of Warcraft playing here but this was a really good week for my new little guild and we are so excited so I’ve decided to share.
If you are confused about what anything means, please feel free to ask. I've also made a post on my Blourm explaining many of the basic terms used in the game.

And because it was our first huge accomplisment as a guild and I really don't care that there were only 5 of us in the group in the guild I made sure to get a group picture!

Well, raiding has been very kind to us since that day. Friday the 5th was our first scheduled day to start raiding after the guild meeting. We get 5 of us together, 2 tanks and 3 dps, so we need heals. I spam chat for an hour and all I can get is 2 more dps and no heals. So we decide to try again on Saturday. What a difference 1 day makes! On Saturday an old friend of my husband and myself decided to transfer back to our server and join our guild. She brought 2 toons both of which are kingslayers and one of which is a heroic geared healer! I start spamming trade and this time it only takes me 10 minutes to fill the group! Holy cow this is working out!

We head in and our dps is outstanding! We are 1 shotting everything in there. Not a surprise for the first wing, but then we 1 shot rot and fest AND Putricide! We killed him so fast that in P3 the tanks didn't even get him a quarter of the way around the room. We moved on and 1 shot Dreamwalker also. At that point we lost a healer so I had to go pug a new one which took less than 5 minutes and we moved on to Princes. This is where our first hiccups came into play as I'd never done the fight on 10 man and a few had never done it at all. But we got them after a few tries and moved on to Blood Queen. Even less of the group had seen this fight, but after some miscommunication on the bites on our first try we rocked it on the second and got her down!

Now on to Sindragosa a fight that no one has seen other than one of the locks and our healer friend. We spent 2 hours wiping on her but we were getting really close. The only thing stopping us from killing her that night was the fact that many of us were tired and it was already pretty late. So we all decided to come back the next day and try again. We regroup on Sunday and everyone shows up. We walk in and 1 shot Sindy! She never saw it coming! OMG! We're going to see the LK fight! This is our goal what we want the most before Cata! So we head up and talk about the fight then spend a couple hours wiping on him. Our best attempt that night was 45% I think.

We really want to kill LK before Cata so I extend the raid lock to go back to him after the reset and we plan on Tuesday night. Our healer can't come that night as she has plans but we figure we can get another. I had bad luck getting people on Tuesday so I switched to an alt and we started a fresh run though it didn't go very far. Our next night was scheduled for Friday. The 5 of us are together and ready to go but none of our previous pugs are online, so I have to pug all new heals and dps. We get up to LK and have a couple good attempts at him then all of a sudden 2 heals and a dps drop group O.o. Back to Dala I go and manage to fill the spots fairly quickly. And what a blessing them dropping was as we managed to get 2 of the best most friendly heals I've ever met on my server! They were both kingslayers who absolutly love the fight and helped us to fix some of our positioning and our strat. They explained some things we hadn't understood before and really helped us out. Our best attempt that night was 35% before everyone had to go. So I schedule us to go back the next night which was this past Saturday. Again none of the pugs from the night before are on so I get 5 brand new people, but thankful a couple more kingslayers. After the second attempt for the night one of the lesser healers suddenly says they have to go and drops group. No biggie as our awesome priest from the night before had logged on and we get her into the group.  We are doing great and get LK to 20% before we have some bad luck and people died. After that we had more bad luck for a couple of attempts. Then finally, everything just clicked! The defiles were getting placed on the edge of the room, the valkyers were dying, no one died at all, it was simply perfect and we WON! After just 3 days of learning the fight we kicked his butt!

And because it was our first huge accomplisment as a guild and I really don't care that there were only 5 of us in the group in the guild I made sure to get a group picture!

It was a really good week for our little guild and now we can start working on all the hard modes we've been wanting to do.

And also, because I wanted to squee about this days ago and forgot, on Wednesday I finally finally managed to get my 100 mount achievement! I had to farm the heck out of champion seals to do it, but I finally did!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Drunken Scottsman

So for the past several days the hubby and I have had a song stuck in our heads. It isn't a bad song, in fact is a rather funny song, but it's about to drive us crazy as it just keeps playing over and over again in our heads.

Because of this I've decided that I want to share the song with all of you. There are no images in the YouTube below as there is no video for the song but please make sure you sound is on and have a listen.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Restarting the Morning

I dislike mornings. I've never been a morning person. And mornings are not made any better when things are not working properly. Thus is the story for me this morning. Our lovely IT department has started the process of moving all our printers and work stations to a new server system. And of course lucky me gets to be a part of the test group that moved last night.

 Along with those of us in the test group having our work stations moved, the printers also moved to the new server last night. I had to completely shut down my computer last night which is something we normally only have to do if we know the power is going to be out in the building over the weekend. So this morning I have to start it up which takes forever because of all the security scripts that have to be run. So I wait around and twiddle my thumbs waiting on it. Finally I'm in and I see an email stating that everyone needs to restart their computer to load the new IPs for the printers to their workstations. Wonderful. So I tell my comp to restart and head to the cafeteria to grab some breakfast. Get back 10 mintues later, log on and check my printers. Hmm..they've not updated. So I delete the old printers that are there and restart again. Nothing again when it comes back up. So I send off and email to the helpdesk. The response lets us know that there was a problem with the test group but that they've fixed it and to restart again. So I restart my computer yet again. Note: Each restart takes 5-10 minutes. Everything comes back up, I still don't have printers. Send another email. "Oh I forgot to do yours" /sigh Emails me back 10 minutes later, "Ok restart again." So yet again I restart my computer. Yay! I have printers now...oh wait, they loaded the printers for the South end of the building but I sit on the North end. Send another email. 20 minutes later "Sorry! Restart again" OMG! I restart again and finally I have the printers I need to have set up on my computer. Of course the ones for the South end are still there but I'm not going to bother with it. I have the ones I need.

Between waiting on emails and restarting my computer I wasted nearly 2 hours this morning of not being able to do much. Though I did get a ways read in my book. But what a lovely morning huh? If it isn't one thing its another, and today it was restarting my computer 5 times.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Hooray for Leftovers!

Normally when a person thinks of leftovers they think of something gross and unappealing. Well my lunch today was leftovers and I'll have you know it was very YUMMY!

In an effort to save money on groceries because we just bought a new car, the hubby and I have been exploring alternate methods of cooking that are cheap but also not time consuming. This is what we've come up with.


We don't have a name for it, but it is so very yummy and it cooks all in one pot.

1 package Hillshire Farm precooked Beef Sausage
1 fresh sliced yellow onion
5 sliced red potatoes (depending on size)
2 fresh cloves of garlic
1 can Veg-All, drained
1 cup white Minute Rice
1 can of water
2 Tables spoons light margarine
Tony Chachere's Creole Spice Mix
Garlic Powder

We start by slicing and adding the onion, potatoes, Veg-All, water and margarine and spice to taste (we like ours a bit spicy) so that they can start cooking. Then slice up and add the sausage. Once all of that is together and boiling we add the rice, cover and reduce to medium heat and cook till the potatoes, onions and rice is soft. Normally only about 10-15 minutes.

And that's it! Dinner is ready!

We've also made this with chicken. We started with skinless, boneless chicken breast cubed up. It gets browned in a seperate pan with some seasoning and is then added to the rest of the mix. It's hard to estimate exactly how much this cost to make since so many of the items are bought in larger packages, but it is for sure under $10 and lately we've been having enough to fill us both up for dinner with enough left for me to take to work for lunch the next day plus a bit more.

We've made this a few times now, each time has been a bit different as we don't measure the spice, so some nights are spicier than others. We've also used some flavored rice side dish packs a couple of times and those work really well also for a bit more flavor. We're also thinking about how we could change it up come winter with maybe some chili beans and such.

In the past the hubby and I tried to take turns cooking dinner. Neither of us wanted to do it and cooking was always used as a bargaining chip to try to get out of doing other things. But now we've been cooking together and it's much more enjoyable and so is the food :)

Friday, July 9, 2010

Real ID for World of Warcraft

Real ID for World of Warcraft main photo

As some of you may know I'm hopelessly addicted to World of Warcraft an MMORPG (Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game). I've been playing for nearly 5 years now and I love the game. I have 8 level 80 characters plus 3 more in their mid 70s. My husband and I met through the game and it is a part of our lives.  One of my sisters likes to give me crap because we pay $15 each every month to play this game. But $30 once a month for unlimited entertainment is so much cheaper than dinner and a movie that we'd only get to do once a month.

Recently Blizzard (the company that owns World of Warcraft) released a new feature for WoW and their other games. Real ID. Real ID was a revolutionary new chat system for the game. Friend your friends and you can now talk to them no matter what character they are on no matter if they are of a different faction, on a different server, or even in a different Blizzard game. I became really excited about this as I love to randomly create new chacters on other servers to play when I get board. And now I'd be able to do it and still keep in touch with all of my friends who play the game.

My one issue with the feature is that it shows our Real Life First AND Last names to those we friend. For me this wasn't a huge deal as those I've friended already know my name from being friends with them on FaceBook and I've not friended anyone I don't trust. Though there are those who have sat and friended every person they've ever met in the game. But I do have a friend who is not keen on the idea and would prefer to at the very least keep her last name private. So for her, she will not be using the Real ID system until they allow us to pick a universal nickname to use. But it doesn't look like this is going to be an option. In the past couple of days Blizzard has made a new announcement stating that starting with the release of Cataclysm (the next expansion)and their new game Star Craft II they will introduce a revamped community forum system. This new forum system will utilize Real ID for posting purposes. This means to post on the offical World of Warcraft community forums all users will have to post using their real First AND Last names.

Doesn't sound like a big deal? Well it really is. Just giving a person your first and last name opens you up identify theft and stalking or worse. Over the years we've heard stories of people being slighted in game and tracking down the person who to harm them. Someone really good with computers wouldn't even need a real name to track someone down. But now Blizzard will be making it so that anyone with a computer can track anyone down as they will be displaying our names for the world to see. Read this blog here about how a player found another in just 20 minutes after giving out his name on the forums.


This is a very real problem and many people have already canceled their accounts over it. Blizzard's response is that the forums are optional. Not True. Much of the customer and technical support for the game happens on the forums. This means to get any help a person will be forced to hand out their real name. This just isn't logical. They say the reason for the change is to clean up the forums. To make people accountable for what they say to stop the flaming and the trolling. No more hiding behind level 1 alts. I call BS. Making a user pick a nickname to use on the forum would serve the same purpose and still protect the privacy of the players. They think real names will stop the trolls? Never. People who troll don't care if others know who they are. They'll still troll. Rather than forcing out the trolls all this will do is force out those who do make well thought out constructive and informational posts on the forums. All that will be left are trolls.

I find it interesting that while looking for a photo to add to this post that I found out a few years ago the federal government here was trying to pass a Real ID law. This law would have forced all citizens to have a federal real ID in addition to their state drivers licenses. These ID's would be required to board an airplane, enter a government building, a state/federal park/preserve, etc. It was highly opposed as an invasion of privacy and likened to the days of WWI and WWII in Europe where people were required to have papers on them at all times to prove who they were. If simply being forced to carry another card around with our names on it is an invasion of privacy how is forcing our real names to show on a public forum any less of an invasion.

I was already planning to play Star Wars: The Old Republic when it comes out. Guess I won't be alone.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Heaven in a Pint

Heaven in a Pint main photo

Right after High School I went on a school sponsored trip to Germany. I spent 18 days there with a group of my classmates and a few teachers. I don't remember which town we were in at the time, but we were in a shopping center and there was an Italian Ice stand that sold ice cream. I don't remember the name of the flavor I picked out anymore, but it wasn't one that I knew or had ever had before. And my teacher couldn't give me a translation for it either.

Well I think I found it again! I think the flavor was amaretto! A few days ago the hubby and I were craving ice cream as we hadn't had any in a while. I was really looking for something different when this one caught my eye. Amaretto Almond Crunch from Häagen-Dazs . I took it home and dug in to find it was like heaven in my mouth! The flavor was absolutely perfect and tasted like the ice cream I'd had years ago in Germany. Of course that ice cream didn't have little bits of almond in it, but after tasting this I wish it had. This ice cream is absolutely perfect! I love it! And the best part is that the hubby doesn't like it! So I don't have to worry about him eating it while I'm at work.

Now here's the bad part. It's a limited edition. According to the Häagen-Dazs site it will only be available until December. Now that is a long time, but normally they never bring these flavors back again. So from now till then I'll have to indulge and come Nov-Dec stalk up as much as I can! lol

I've gone through this before sadly. Several years ago I found a flavor of Ben & Jerry's I just adored. It was a Honey Vanilla with chocolate covered honey wafers in it. It too was a limited edition that I've not seen since. And after that Ameri-cone Dream also by Ben & Jerry's and yet again another limited edition.

Why must I fall in love with that which will not last? Why?

I guess for now I'll simply have to savor every moment that I have it.

Monday, June 14, 2010

You know your from Kansas when...

You know your from Kansas when... main photo

So one of the first things people think about when I tell them I'm from Kansas is the Wizard of Oz. Normally I get at least one silly person who will call me Dorathy and a handful more who will ask me how Toto is doing. If they are particularly annoying, I'll tell them Toto is dead.

But that isn't what makes you a true Kansan. Growing up here you learn to deal with the constant wind, the rain storms that appear out of no where on a sunny day, and the tornado sirens that are common during the summer months.

For those of you that don't know what a tornado siren sounds like this is the easiest way for me to describe it. Have you ever heard an Air Raid siren from the 1930's-40's? Either in real life or in the movies? That is what a tornado siren sounds like as many of them are left over from back then. Though I'm not sure if they would spin back then. Our spin so that they can send the sound over a wider area than one that only points one direction. So the sound tends to wax and wane.

I grew up across the street from one of these sirens. I don't ever remember being scared of it. All it meant to me was that there was a bad storm and Mom and Dad would shuffle myself and my sisters down into the crawl space under the house. We didn't have a basement. Just a crawl space where all the plumping was. The space ran the entire length of the house but was only about 3 feet tall. We'd spread out a blanket on the dirt floor and lay down with the radio and a flashlight. And while we sat in the dirt, my Mom would be running between checking on us and checking on Dad who normally had pulled out the video camera and was outside somewhere trying to get the whole thing on tape.

The only time I actually remember associating fear with the siren was with my youngest sister. Here the tornado sirens are tested every Monday at noon no matter the season. They go off for about 2-3 minutes at noon then shut off for the week. Well one summer when Dani was only maybe 5 or 6 the three of us were out back playing. Well noon rolls around and the siren goes off. Sam and myself know that the siren is just a test but we run for the house anyways. We make it in before Dani and manage to lock her outside. The poor thing was pounding on the door and turning the nob trying to get in while we just laughed. My dad looked at us and asked if we'd locked her out. Of course we said no and that the door must just be stuck. So he told us to let her in. I discreetly unlocked the door and opened it. Well by this time she had stopped pounding on it and had managed to press her back against the door in fear so as the door opens she falls backwards into the house. Sam and I laughed so hard. We still remember it to this day, and it still makes me laugh.

I have seen my share of tornadoes though. I've seen 5 at the same time while driving out in the country. I've seen one a quarter mile wide go past my town just 2 miles out while standing out in the front yard watching it. That day my Dad was 2 blocks down the street filming it. All the traffic on the road was heading towards it rather than away. And it was just another normal day that happened to have a bit of excitement. I've also driven through towns that have been practically wiped off the map after a tornado has hit them.

My first reaction anymore when I hear I'm in a tornado warning is to turn to the news, or more likely, bring up the news station website to see exactly where the storm is. If it doesn't look like its heading directly for me I don't bother moving to shelter. No point other wise.

Last night was just such a time. It had been storming pretty good out, lots of thunder and rain. No big deal. In fact I never would have known that there was a tornado warning at all had the National Weather service not sent a banner across the TV show we were watching. So I open up the news site and look at the radar. Pretty big storm line, worst part sitting right on top of the town. So I open up the live news cast to hear what they have to say and find out that the rotation in the storm is all East of me already. Good to know, that means I don't need to move to the shelter.

In my younger days I would have gone to the door and probably braved the rain to go out and see if I could see anything. Not anymore. Now I just find out if I need to actually stop what I'm doing or not. If not, I just keep doing what I'm doing.

I've come to the conclusion that there are 2 types of Kansans. Those that run out the door to see the tornado, and those like me who've seen enough and just keeping what they are doing.

The only thing that really disappointed me about the storm was the fact that the rotation was right over the part of town where I work and it didn't have the courtesy to take out the building I work in.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

My Newest Nephew!

My Newest Nephew! main photo

So yesterday May 31st at 12pm, my newest nephew Dylan Lawrence was born weighting in at 7lbs 2.6oz and 19inches long. He is now the youngest of 3 of the cutest boys I know! Sadly I'll have to wait a few weeks before I can go and visit him as I live a couple hours away from the rest of the family.

I've posted more pictures at my forum so you'll have to go there to see them!


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Sunny Skies, Cool Breezes and Cinnamon Rolls!

Sunny Skies, Cool Breezes and Cinnamon Rolls! main photo

Today is the weekly farmers market and there are many more vendors there today than the past couple of weeks since the season has officially started now.

I was already planning on going over there, but as I was heading to the ATM for some cash a co-worker walks past me and lets me know that there are fresh strawberries there. !! I love strawberries, and its actually quite rare for them to be at our market. So I double time it to the ATM then out the door to walk down the street. Of course the vendor that has them is all the way at the end of the row, but no matter, he had tons of strawberries. $4 for a quart or $10 for 3 quarts. I only bought one, but I was really tempted to go for the 3.

After that I knew I wanted to stop the bread vendor and the honey vendor. The bread guy always has fresh scones in the morning and I was planning on getting one of those, but something else caught my eye. Fresh Cinnamon Rolls! This is new so I had to get one! I also picked up a loaf of 10 grain bread. I was torn between that and the honey wheat, but we are planning on making tuna later in the week and I think the 10 grain would work better for it. My hubby got me hooked on tuna with apples in it. Growing up tuna sandwiches always just had tuna and mayo. I wasn't much of a relish person. Now I love it with relish and apple both. So yummy!

My last stop was the honey guy. Sometimes I'll go to the market just to go to his booth. I picked up 5 honey sticks in sour strawberry, sour watermelon, cinnamon (x2) and clover. The hubby doesn't eat honey so I don't bother to buy more than that. I didn't see any of his honey paste there today though or I would have bought some of it. Strawberries pureed with honey is soo yummy! He also has honey soaps, lotions, chap stick, and other things. And today he had some fresh gooseberries.

I was also looking for some zucchini today too, but didn't see any. Probably too early in the year yet for it. All of a sudden yesterday I decided that I want zucchini cake even though I've never made it. Probably a good thing I didn't find any to buy as I still need to look up a recipe. I was also tempted to stop by the apple stand and buy some apple cider doughnuts. They are so yummy also, but I decided that the cinnamon roll was enough for today.

So I'm in a happy mood as I have yummy goodies. The week is half over. Hubby's last day of work is today, then he's on a break for the summer.

Monday, May 24, 2010

How not to save a Tree

How not to save a Tree main photo

I try not to rant about my job and my boss here too much. I don't want my blog to be so full of negativity, but this is something I need to bitch about as it happens regularly.

I don't pretend to be a nature enthusiast, I don't recycle, and my car is defiantly not green. But it still bugs me when people are wasteful with out a second thought.  Especially when it effects the budget at my workplace that is so far in the whole we are facing layoffs again.

A large portion of my job revolves around printing out documents for my boss. For some reason she is unable to review these documents on the computer like most of the rest of the people in this office. So I'm constantly printing stuff off for her, most of which she never even reads or looks at, but she needs the items for her meetings. I do my best to print double sided and black and white to save ink. Despite what the companies that do color print tell you, printing in color does cost more when a color printer takes 4 ink toners that all cost the same amount as the single ink toner needed for a black and white printer.

Now my boss seems to think that if there is one single spec of color in a document it needs to be printed in color. I don't know why, but that's how she thinks. I've gotten into the habit that no matter if there is color in the document or not I do NOT print in color unless she specifically asks for it. Well today she sent me 2 documents to print, in color. Both of these documents were 50+ pages long! And the worse part is that my color printer will not print double sided. I've had one of our IT guys look at it, as he says it should be able to, but it just won't do it. So that's 100 wasted sheets of paper to print off two nearly identical documents that she'll probably never actually look at.

And what does she do when she finally cleans these 100s of pages off her desk? She throws them in the trash! We have a recycle program in our building. There are bins in 2 places on our floor alone. 3 small ones for plastic, newspaper, cans, and then a very large dumpster for white paper. Most of the employees here keep boxes under their desks to toss paper into rather than tossing it in their trash. This saves them from getting up to go to the dumpster every time. They can just fill the box then make a single trip. But not my boss. No. She just tosses it all in the trash after its sat on her desk for months.

Under normal circumstances this wouldn't bother me all that much. But the fact that the agency is looking in every nook and cranny for ways to save money in the hopes of not having to let people go, and here she is wasting paper and ink and who knows what else (though time comes to mind). I'm sure she isn't worried about any of this one bit since she can hide behind her "disabled" label and probably not have to worry being one of the ones let go. It just frustrates me so much to see her constant neglect and disregard for things that others around here take seriously.


Thursday, May 20, 2010

Just another long Thursday

Just another long Thursday main photo

Nothing really going on today but thought I'd try to write up something since I didn't post anything yesterday. The picture up above is exactly how I feel right now. It's been raining for days and I'm really starting to miss the sunshine. They say we'll get some tomorrow, so here's keeping my fingers crossed.

I've been rather bored at home too. World of Warcraft just doesn't excite me much since I've not been raiding. And lately many of my friends in the game haven't been logging on much either. Least not during the week. It's ok though as I was wanting to spend less time in the game. Only problem is that there isn't much else to do around the house. Maybe tonight I'll play the Wii again. I haven't played it in a few days and 100 pin bowling sounds kinda fun right now. If I'm lucky I'll be able to talk the hubby into playing with me. So we'll see. It'll depend on if I find anything I really want to watch on TV first.

I still have about an hour left of work and nothing to do. Well I take that back, I have some really boring hole punching and filing I need to do. But I find it hard to get into doing mindless tasks like that. Though it serves me right as I have a ton to do cause I've been putting it off for so long. This is the first day this week that my boss didn't piss me off, so that's a good thing too.

Tomorrow is Friday, end of the week. I can't wait.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

From the Mind of a Child

From the Mind of a Child main photo
My husband works at a grade school with special needs children. Some of them are physically challenged and some mentally. But they are generally bright kids.

This week at school they have just been doing busy fun work to wind down the school year which ends next week. They've been working their way through an activity book. One of the activities today was to trace their hand for a picture. The kid he was working with today had no problem with this task and they moved on. On the next page the activity was for them to draw a self portrait. This one was a bit more challenging to explain. Him and the other teacher told him he needs to draw himself, his head and arms and such. So taking the lesson from drawing his hand, he plops his face down on the paper and hold the crayon up to my hubby saying "Draw draw!". My hubby and the other teacher couldn't do anything but laugh at first. When after a few minutes they hadn't done the requested drawing the kid looked up at them said "draw draw!" again then plopped his face back down. They managed to control their laughter this time and drew around his head for him so that he could complete his picture. Only a child would think to do it that way.

I just had to share this story today because after a long boring day at work this made me laugh and put me in a good mood!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Just Another Manic Monday

Once again it's Monday and I'm at work. Not to far into the day yet only 10 am, but I've nothing better to do right now. The weekend was calm and stress free. Didn't really do anything though. Didn't get my hair cut like I was hoping to. It doesn't cost much to have it done, but with the way money is right now its one of the things I'll just have to deal with out right now. I don't think its quite long enough for me to be able to do a donation to Locks of Love yet anyways and still keep it past my shoulders. Probably be there by the end of the summer though.

Didn't get anything done about my tire either.  When it comes to weekends the hubby and I always avoid leaving the house. We're both stuck in stressful jobs all week long so when the weekend comes neither of us want to do anything but hang around the house and relax. I can say I got the laundry done though. It's the one thing I actually make sure gets done every week, well at least in the way of clothes. Towels is another story but we have tons of those.

We had some excitement around the appartment this week too. The ones we live in are set up in a C shape around a parking lot. We're in the top of the C. Straight across from us in the bottom of the C it seems there have been some domestic troubles. No clue what about, but each day this week we came home to police cars in the parking lot, one time a guy who looked to be in his mid 20's was handcuffed at the front of one of them. Friday shortly after we got home they had somehow called the fire department. 3 red engines and a fire chief blazer were all parked outside with the firemen knocking on the same apartment as before. Then the police were back again on Sunday. Normally our neighborhood is pretty quiet, so this is about as exciting as it gets.

I wasn't able to sleep at all last night either. I had put the email about layoffs out of my mind most of the weekend and just relaxed. Then last night as I was heading to bed it all came back. I guess the thoughts about having to get up early for work made me think about them. I stressed myself out and tossed and turned all night. It also doesn't help that its been cloudy and raining all weekend. I really need some sunshine.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

BlueRose, Red Nose

BlueRose, Red Nose main photo
It's that time of year again. Time for me to get my spring head cold and sinus infection. I don't have the infection yet, but this is normally how it all starts for me. The stuffiness started last night, I woke up barely able to breath without coughing and I've been blowing my nose non stop since about 9am. And wouldn't ya know, I'm out of tissues at work. I actually ran out about 2 weeks ago and kept forgetting to buy more while at the store. And before you ask, no work does not provide us with any. They don't even provide us with paper towels or cups in the break room. I think the only reason we have toilet paper in the bathrooms is because that is paid for by the building facilities and not the individual agencies who rent out the offices here.

So I've had to resort to blowing my nose on the sand paper like, 1-ply toilet paper that is provided in the bathrooms. Not only is it to thin for a good solid blow, but its so rough my nose feels like I've taken a sander to it. This is just mild so far though. When I was in college I worked in a grocery store and they didn't provide tissues either so I resorted to blowing my nose on thick paper towels. At one point my nose was so raw that it the skin had to scab over to heal. It never bled, but it was about the equivilant of a skinned knee but on my nose.

And to be honest, even this wouldn't really make me feel like crap all that much if I wasn't just getting back to work after missing the last 2 days plus Monday, Tuesday and Friday of last week due to my IBS and a major migraine that had me sticking to my bed for most of the day those days. So in my 2 week pay period I've worked a total of 3 days and if I make it in tomorrow and Friday I'll have only worked 5 of 10 days. My paycheck is going to be a very sad one. Thankfully its on a 2 week delay so the one I get tomorrow will be a full check and have enough in it to cover May rent with some left over for groceries. It's the paying of the bills 2 weeks later that will be rough. Normally Brian's paycheck goes to that, but with mine being so small we'll have to use some of his for groceries.

At least my day is going pretty fast. It's already 2pm, just a few more hours of work to go. I've managed to keep myself fairly entertained today even though I've had basically no real work to do.

Friday, April 16, 2010

I Have a Blorum!

I have a Blorum! main photo
So I had a forum that never really got going so I thought "I'll turn it into a Blorum". Then as I was working on the skin and different changes I decided to move it to a whole new place and start fresh with an easier URL than the one my old board had.

So I've opened up Simply Blue. I'm sure I'll end up making more changes in the future but for now I have it where I like it enough to open it to the public. There youl'll find a section where I've shared some of my poetry plus a section for me to blog about my online gaming. These 2 areas are closed to new posts, but are open for comments. More could be added in the future, we'll see.

The Frozen Rose Inn is open for new posts though, so if you stop by feel free to leave a hello there, or if you are short on time, plop it in the chat box :)

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Opinions and Feelings

Opinions and Feelings main photo
Right now I'm trying to decide if I'm going to stop visiting a new community I've been frequenting for a little over a month now. For the most part the people are nice, but much of the discussion revolves around politics and other topics that generally people have a wide variety of views on and can easily spark disagreements and arguments.

To be clear before I go any farther, I do not associate myself with any political party as I don't really pay that much attention to it. I find it confusing and everyone is lying no matter which side they are on so no point really. I'm also not extremely religious. I believe in God but I have some beliefs that some more religious folks would take offense to.

Over all I try to keep an open mind about most topics. I'm willing to listen to both sides and while I may not agree or change my mind I can discuss the topic in a friendly manner. I also try to express my opinions with out telling anyone else that they are wrong.

My problem now is not the fact that these topics are being discussed on this board, but more the manner of how the "discussion" develops. I've found that I am the odd person out so to speak with my views of the world. I am in the minority in what I think about most of the topics. More than once now I've expressed my opinion only to have it responded to with venom and hate. I'm told that I'm not being attacked, but my opinion is and isn't that basically the same thing?

Today after reading a couple posts to an opinion that I gave, my feelings were sorely hurt. The topic was about how as part of the new health care changes the age of dependency is being increased from 23 to 26. This means that as long as a child is a full time student they can stay on their parents insurance. The parents do not have to keep them on their insurance, but they can if they wish to do it to help their child out.

I posted that I do not feel this is a bad change as it takes longer now to get through college than it used to. The response I got was that these kids need to "get off momma titty and join the military" and that "no adult should be taking care of another adult who is capable of working". And that if a person is really sick, no emergency room will turn away even a "snot nosed brat".

This really stung as I was one of those who was on my parents insurance through college until I was 23. I didn't live at home, I worked 25-30 hours a week which was all the store would give me. I worked holidays, weekends, summers, all of it. My college life wasn't what you see in movies. It wasn't all parties and fun all the time.

I can't claim to have had a hard childhood. My parents gave me everything I needed and even some things I didn't growing up. And they did the same for my sisters. But when it came to college I was on my own. I got student loans and worked. The only things they could help me with was insurance.

I gave them a brief look into my experience and why I feel the way I do about the topic and was met with a "I think you are taking this to personal". How can I not when he is throwing insults at the very type of person that I am? He may not of specifically called me a "snot nosed brat" but he might as well of and it hurt.

A few days ago there was a discussion about if age makes you more caring and less selfish, and not surprising most of them said that all the 10-20 year olds are all "me me me". And while I don't disagree with this, they also think themselves to be the least selfish and very caring. This coming from people who in every other thread complain about how they should get to keep all their hard earned dollars, and even in this thread saying "no adult should take care of another adult". If that isn't selfish what is?

If everyone refused to help another person because it required a bit of work or might cost them a bit more money we would have tons more homeless and starving and probably be a third world country. I understand that the system isn't perfect and that there are those who abuse it. But I'd rather see those that need help get it than take it all away just to keep it from those who abuse it.

What totally baffles me in this, is that these people are parents. Parents who I would of thought would do anything to help make sure their children are successful in life. Yet here they are saying they'd refuse to keep their kids on their insurance as long as they can if they can't afford their own. That they'd just kick them out of the house at the age of 18 and let them sink or swim.

Maybe I'm just too young to understand this. But I can't imagine that I could do that to my own children when I have them.

I still don't know if I'll be going back to that forum. Not all the threads are like this, but over half of them are so it limits my participation if I try to avoid the controversial ones. I also don't like not being able to be me. Not being able to state my mind and not be chewed out for it.

I'll think on this some more. For now I'll just give it a couple days.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

My Cute Nephews!

My cute nephews! main photo
So my birthday was a couple weeks ago, but I held off on celebrating with my family until this past weekend as they knew they'd be able to come visit then. We didn't do a whole lot other than go out to eat and hang out at my apartment for a while, but that was enough to get some really cute pictures of my nephews!

We went out to eat at Cheeburger Cheeburger. Here's a link to their website for those of you who have never heard of them. Diner experience with custom made cheeseburgers! Now because they also do shakes, and have a "shake of the day" we all felt the urge to indulge. Pictured above is my youngest nephew, Ronan, showing off a big grin after Grandma let him have some of her Peanut Butter and Banana shake. This kid has suction power! See those 3 straws in Grandma's hand? Ronan had all three of them in his mouth with shake moving up all three of them at the same time!

Now back at the apartment there wasn't much to do, but I do have a Wii and the boys found the controlers. Since both Mom and Grandma have Wii's they know what they are for, and Colin, the older brother, talked us into letting him play.

Colin is 2 1/2 years old and is one smart cookie. At the resturant he recited his ABC's song for us a couple of time to great cheers. With the Wii he made sure, when asked, to put on the wrist strap and did his best to follow our instructions on how to play the games. I only have a couple games so he was playing Sport Resort and ended up with the Sword Fighting game. It was the easiest for him cause all he had to do was swing the remote back and forth a lot, lol.

I think Colin was better at the game than me. He improved my score by nearly 100 points. Though he had lots of help. The entire time the rest of us were cheering him on with shouts of "Swing faster!" or "Swing bigger!" And he was going to town so much that at one point he hit Ronan in the head! Though he immediately turn and said "sorry" before going back to the game. We tried moving Ronan away from Colin or having Colin move back from the coffee table to prevent this, but it just didn't work. Colin would move back towards the TV and Ronan would move back to stand beside his brother. He just had to be right there in the action!

This went on and kept us entertained for several hours. Nothing like 2 adorable little boys to help keep things interesting. I was even able to get Colin's attention for just a brief bit for a smile and a picture.

This was definatly one of the better birthday's I've had in a long while. :)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Office Space

Office Space main photo
For those that may not know. I hate my job. The picture above is pretty much how I feel about it. I'm an Administrative Specialist for a state agency. While the job isn't hard, and honestly I normally don't have all that much to do, its extremely boring and I feel brain dead most of the time. I directly support 8 people and provide assistance when needed to 12 others who do not have their own support staff anymore after lay offs last summer.

So, about six months ago I was having a lot of problems with my stomach. I went to the doctor and as far as they can tell I simply have irritable bowl syndrome. I had a colonoscopy done just to make sure it wasn't more serious. The doctor then proscribed me some nasty prescription drink mix stuff that I took for 2 days then refused to drink more. I'm currently taking some over the counter stuff along with a fiber supplement to try and help keep things going as they should, but it doesn't help every day. Some days being more than 20 feet from a toilet is not a good thing. On top of this I've been dealing with stress headaches that cause nausea and some depression.

For the last several months I've been missing a lot of work The last several pay checks I've not even made my full 80 hours because I just don't have the vacation or sick leave anymore. I've only been working here for 3 years and it takes a full month for me earn 1 day of sick and vacation time. So as you can imagine I don't have any.

Now this gets me into the whole reason for this blog. On Friday my boss had a short meeting with me to go over some projects I need to be working on and to follow up on my performance evaluation from December. It came up that I've been missing a lot of work and that I need to make more of an effort to be here. I wake up every morning and get in the shower. Every morning. By the time I'm done with my shower I normally know how I'm feeling and whether or not I'll be mobile that day. But I understand where my boss is coming from. I do need to be here and I know that.

What pissed me off to no end though is what she said after that, telling me how even though she is gone a lot, she never uses up all of her sick/vacation leave. Well, not only is she an Exempt employee, meaning she only has to work 1 minute of every 4 hours to not have to take leave time, I'm pretty sure she never accurately records when she is gone. More often than not she gets away with this by claiming she is working from home. And she can get away with it because she is a very large woman. Up words of probably 600 pounds. She has a lot of health problems that make her "disabled".  Some of the health problems cause the weight and some are caused by the weight. Because of this she is rarely here, even though early last year she got a motorized chair to help her get around better. But having it hasn't made her be here anymore or to be any more punctual. This says to me that there is something other than just health keeping her from being here most days.

A prime example of this happened yesterday. She gets here at about 9:15, making it to her 9am meeting late. It lasted until about 10:15 or so. She had another meeting at 10:30 that lasted until about 11:30. Then she spent some time at her desk until approximately noon when she comes by my desk to tell me that she's going home for the afternoon because the bug she had 2 weeks ago is hitting her again. Ok, fine, what ever. But this isn't the end. At about 1:45 I get an email from one of the project managers I support asking me to print of a document for my boss who will be by to pick it up. I emailed her back asking when this would be as she went home sick. I was told that my boss would be "turning around" to come back and get it? Turning around? You mean after 2 hours she still hasn't made it home? I thought she was sick? Then I spoke to another project manager about it and found out that shortly before she left they were discussing what is on the buffet at a local restaurant today. WTF? Now when I'm sick and go home, I go home and curl up in bed and crash, I don't drive around town for anther 2 hours. So she come back for the document along with 2 others she was able to email me about on her way, and as usual I have to run them down stairs to her.

It stuff like that that pisses me off. And remember that evaluation I told you about? Myself and all the project managers had our evaluations with her the same week...over the phone...while she sat in her parking spot downstairs. She actually wanted us to come down there and sit in her vehicle with her for them. We all refused because it would be too uncomfortable.

It's just crazy.I need a new job, but no one is hiring with all the budget cut backs. So for now I'm sticking it out, even though our legislature is proposing a 5% cut in all state employee wages but closing all state offices at 3pm on Friday's. And on top of that my agency alone is having trouble meeting the cuts they want us to make and some of the options the legislature is liking the most is to cut 50 jobs or simply dissolve the agency. Now you understand the stress headaches.

Ok, I think I'm done ranting for now. I'll try for a more cheery topic next time.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

On the 9th Floor..

On the 9th Floor... main photo
So, I work on the 9th floor of a 10 story office building. Normally this isn't a bad thing. We have a semi-nice view of the city from up here, which depending on the weather is kinda pretty.

When it isn't nice to work on the 9th floor is when someone decides to burn their popcorn in the microwave setting off the fire alarms.

I'm a government employee, and as such I have the traditional figure of such. Round. I'm not in shape by any means, nor are most of the people who work here. I'm just lucky I'm not one of the ones who also has ankle/knee problems. On average I walk maybe 1 mile a day, mostly just to and from my car as I have to park 3 blocks from my building. So it isn't like I never move, but 9 flights of stairs for me is just painful. The worst part is that it wasn't painful while actually walking down them, or over the block to our meeting place. They started getting soar about 30 minutes later and getting worse the rest of the day. Now, 3 days later I'm still in pain. Every time I stand up my legs feel like jello. I feel so much older than I am.

Because of this I thought to myself, "Heck, if I just walk down the stairs each day when I go home I'd get in at least a little bit better shape." Then I walked down 1 flight on a routine mail check and decided I'd better wait for a day when I know my legs aren't going to collapse out from under me.

But that is my new goal for now. Walk down the stairs on my way home at least once a week to start. It'll be painful, but in the long run it'll be worth it if I can get myself back to a reasonable weight.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Maybe I'll try this...

So it isn't like I haven't tried to do blogs before. I have. But my life just isn't interesting enough for me to keep it updated. So I'll put this here and it'll probably be the only thing I ever post.

Not like anyone will read it anyways. Other than maybe Zoe. Everyone I know who would even look at my profile has drifted away from yuku for one reason or another. Life is like that. Hell even I'm not really around. But I think it's more reactionary for me. People stopped coming by FK, so nothing new was being posted, so I had nothing to read or comment on, so I started stopping by less and less. I've not bothered trying to find another community to join either. I don't have a lot of time for RP and I don't know what other type of forum would even be interesting. That and I'm not good meeting new people. Took me a week just to work up the courage to post at FK the first time.

*pauses* Hmm...guess I had more to say than I thought for this. But don't get your hopes up, this is a rare event.

Well have a good day and a good life and maybe I'll talk to you soon. :)