(no subject)

Jul. 25th, 2017 09:27 am
oursin: Brush the Wandering Hedgehog by the fire (Default)
[personal profile] oursin
Happy birthday, [personal profile] adair and [personal profile] owlfish!

Back in "civilization"

Jul. 24th, 2017 11:56 pm
ranunculus: (Default)
[personal profile] ranunculus
 M, Donald and I spent 8 days out in a remote Alaska cabin called Driftwood.  It was great.  Quiet and peaceful until the last couple of days when more people arrived.  Pictures coming later.

I'm looking out the window in Anchorage Alaska tonight and mourning the fact that it is ONLY 11 pm and the light is fading.  5 minutes earlier every day here.   I love long days, and always mourn and whine untll the light sees fit to return again.

Anti-procrastination Tuesday

Jul. 25th, 2017 07:34 am
peaceful_sands: butterfly (Default)
[personal profile] peaceful_sands posting in [community profile] bitesizedcleaning
Tuesdays here and it's time to tackle the anti-procrastination part of the week (well, today, tomorrow, whenever suits!) What will it be? What's been plaguing you that you're going to deal with this week? Tell us all about it.

Need a challenge? Here we go, let's head for the kitchen today and think about bite-sizing our way to progress. Set your challenge by taking into account time available and spoons left at the point at which you're going to do this and by assessing your starting point.

Suggestion 1 - pick a work surface and figure out what needs to happen for it to be in 'ideal condition' - clearing and packing away items to leave it empty? Cleaning the surface in some way? Be realistic - if the work surface is huge, don't tackle it all in one go, break it into sections and tackle one. Consider the ways of doing this - most important area first in terms of future use, most visible area, easiest to tackle area to provide the encouragement of progress quickly, worst area first because you've got the time and energy to make a good dent in what needs doing - you know best. Set a timer and go for it, how much can you get done?

Suggestion 2 - Open a cupboard and tackle a shelf - first identify anything that doesn't need to be there (our of date, wrong place, unwanted) and remove those items. Next step is to either move everything in there to wipe down the shelf (if you think this is necessary - this may depend on the contents of the cupboard that you pick) or to go straight to organising the contents in a useful/pleasing/practical fashion. If it's a food cupboard, remove anything that out of date and health harmful but also identify items which need to be used up quickly and bring them to a more prominent position to encourage yourself to use them up.


And with that I shall leave you and head to work for the day - I'll be back this evening to cheer, if anyone else can cheer and encourage please do.

"You get nothing!"

Jul. 25th, 2017 02:26 am
rosefox: A cartoon figure slipping toward a gaping hole in the paper. (slipping)
[personal profile] rosefox
I'm having one of those "parenting is so hard, when does it stop being hard, oh right, never" days.

I was watching Kit play on their own and glumly thinking that happy Kit is independent and only wants parents when they're sad. Then they toddled over and handed me a stuffed fox, just because. So I know that what I'm feeling is just a feeling and has very little to do with reality. But it's still a big feeling.

Relatedly, having a tantruming toddler scream directly into your ear for several minutes is really quite challenging.

"Kit is so chill," I thought, once upon a time. "Maybe they won't really get toddler tantrums." I was so wrong. Soooo wrong. Tantrums aren't about personality. They're about cognitive and emotional overload. A scream into the void.

(My right ear is the void, apparently.)

(But was I going to stop cuddling my screaming child? Of course not. My ear can cope.)

And now I feel like the worst parent in the world because I couldn't really help my kid, even when they were bottomlessly miserable. There is no cure for the tantrum because it's an existential crisis. You just hold on and say "I'm here" like it means anything. And eventually they stop crying long enough for you to get some calories into them, which almost always helps. It turns out that kids are always basically one minute away from a massive hunger crash, and that rather exacerbates the existential angst.

You could not pay me enough to be a child again. No way. It's genuinely a wonder that kids are ever happy at all. Their bodies do weird things, the world is baffling, everything is too big, they have no control, safety is elusive and fleeting. It's like a fucking horror movie, 24/7. And yet my child comes over and smiles at me and puts their head on my knee for sheer love.

I guess maybe they wanted to say "I'm here" like it means anything.

I guess maybe it does.

The lady of situations

Jul. 25th, 2017 01:01 am
nineweaving: (Default)
[personal profile] nineweaving
And as long as I'm musing on British actresses, my stars, Fiona Shaw!   An interviewer asked her. "Richard II.  What about playing a man?"  "I didn't really approach it as playing a man.  I approached it as playing a god."

Her Waste Land is a masterclass in speaking poetry.

 Nine
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
The general fund currently contains $85. Everyone is eligible to vote in this poll. I will keep it open at least until Tuesday night. If there's a clear answer then, I'll close it. Otherwise I may leave it open a little longer.

Read and vote! )

A Hybrid Solar Eclipse over Kenya

Jul. 25th, 2017 04:45 am
[syndicated profile] apod_feed

Chasing solar eclipses can cause you to go to the most interesting places and meet the most interesting people. Chasing solar eclipses can cause you to go to the most interesting places and meet the most interesting people.


today and tomorrow

Jul. 24th, 2017 08:59 pm
alatefeline: Painting of a cat asleep on a book. (Default)
[personal profile] alatefeline
Today I am grateful for:

- rereading the Toby Daye books

- lots of new nonfiction books

- coffee, meds, food I know is okay, sunlight, naps, all the things that help me feel functional

- shiny objects like metal washers that are just there waiting for someone to pick them up and polish them and make treasures

- a partner who loves me and pets me when I just want to lie there and be a flat cat

Slight case of brainweasels and fwump: Read more... )
umadoshi: (StarCraft - Zerg symbol)
[personal profile] umadoshi
--My sleep has continued to be all over the place. Last night I managed to get to bed around 1 AM or so (IIRC) and didn't get up until 11:30 today; the night before, I was in bed by 1:15 so I could get up at a reasonable hour and [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose, [dreamwidth.org profile] ginny_t, Kas, and I could go raspberry picking, and I managed, at a generous estimate, two hours of sleep. FUN.


--I had these notions of finishing a fic for this round of [dreamwidth.org profile] smallfandomfest, but it wraps up at the end of this month, so...ha ha ha no. ^^; But hey, I got it started and made some actual progress during [dreamwidth.org profile] nanodownunder, and unfilled [dreamwidth.org profile] smallfandomfest prompts remain available for claiming past the round when they're prompted, so it's not like I won't have another chance. I just liked the idea of doing it now.


--I haven't taken pictures yet, but when we were out watering the garden a couple of days ago, there were the beginnings of blossoms on one of the two clematis plants!


--Amidst all the political awfulness, personal stuff, cute gifs, and book-blogger chat, my Twitter feed has been full of people being gleeful about "Dream Daddy: A Dad Dating Simulator"--enough so that I briefly pretended I don't have something like 100 unplayed games and can't remember the last time I played anything and went to check it out. I was saved by an impulse buy by the fact that the game's currently Windows- and Mac-only; I do still have a Windows partition for games, but realistically, I also can't remember the last time I booted into it for anything but StarCraft. (And that wasn't terribly recently. I did buy at least the first of the SCII Nova mission packs, but I don't remember how far I got.) (Separate parenthetical: I've preordered the remastered original StarCraft, so for that, booting into Windows will undoubtedly happen. Unless it magically runs under WINE.)


--I need to keep reminding myself that Rogue One is on Netflix until I finally watch it (having literally slept through most of it in the theatre, which was not the movie's fault!). I should also rewatch TFA sometime in the next few months.


--It turns out Black Sails is shorter than I'd been thinking in two ways: I'd somehow had the impression it's five seasons, not four, and I also hadn't realized the seasons are so short (eight to ten episodes each, I think?). All of a sudden bumping it up to basically the top of my to-watch list (which seems to be a good plan, judging from how many people I know are in love with the show) is a way less daunting prospect.

School Trip!

Jul. 24th, 2017 08:31 pm
lovelyangel: (Tomoyo Confident)
[personal profile] lovelyangel
Nike Portland
Nike Portland

One of my errands in Portland on Sunday afternoon was a stop at Nike Portland. Upon arrival I was surprised to see a group of Japanese students gathered outside the front door. I unfortunately screwed up the photo (above) – but you get an idea of what the scene was like. After the group entered the store, I went in myself to do my errand.

Nike Portland is a pretty cool store with three levels, and the students were having a great time. I heard one, ”Sugoi!” which is how I knew the students were Japanese. The excited girls in school uniforms made me feel like I was in an anime episode. (^_^)

You’re not really supposed to be taking pictures inside, but I sneaked a few quick shots with my iPhone. I wish I could have pulled out the Nikon D810 in my purse, but that would have been way too obvious.





Walked to the library

Jul. 24th, 2017 11:15 pm
james_davis_nicoll: (Default)
[personal profile] james_davis_nicoll
Saw a squirrel hop into the back of a pickup truck and wait, giving every impression it was waiting impatiently for something. Does it know trucks move? Is that how it got to the library?

Life with Elodie

Jul. 24th, 2017 10:59 pm
bjarvis: (Default)
[personal profile] bjarvis
Elodie is about 25 months old. She's a fun toddler, fully of energy, running everywhere, relatively short attention span, a growing vocabulary, and frequent bouts of frustration at not being able to express herself fully or simply being told no, what she wants at that moment isn't possible/practical/feasible.

In short, a perfectly normal toddler.

I've spent a large portion of my life around babies & toddlers so I'm mentally tracking her progress and development. My ears perk up when she suddenly uses full sentences, or fully articulates 2-3 syllable words. She has solid recognition of colours, visually & verbally. She gets shapes and can name the simple ones. She can recognize & recite numbers and letters although she doesn't yet get that the digits symbolize a count of objects.

There are things which come with this toddler which are new to my experience. This kid comes with her favourite shows, movies, music and games. And watches them obsessively & repeatedly.

I swear to god, I am going to burn down Mickey Mouse's fucking clubhouse before this month is over.

And what's the deal with this so-called Doc McStuffins? She's supposed to be a cute kid with a gig a toy doctor, but she's more like a capricious demon, bringing toys to life on her whims to perform for her entertainment, and she then silences them with a gesture, cruelly snatching away the life she once granted. With musical dance numbers. This is childrens' entertainment?!

Elodie has this particular game on her tablet. For each round, a series of cut-out coloured shapes appear on the left half of the screen, and holes which match the shapes & colours appear on the right. The child then uses her finger to drag each shape to the correct hole, matching shape & colour. There is a small caterpillar which obsessively crawls towards the place on the board where she last touched the screen, sometimes obscuring a shape or hole. For every correctly placed piece, the caterpillar acquires a balloon, and when all pieces are in place, the caterpillar floats up to the top of the screen and fades away as the board is removed and a new one is presented.

I've explained to Elodie that the caterpillar is actually a zombie which is pursuing her to consume her brain. When she completes the board, the caterpillar is released from his curse and his ghost floats up to heaven, aided by the balloons she earned for him. Otherwise, he's doomed to traverse the mortal plane, terrorizing toddlers like her forever. I didn't tell her about killing it with a head shot, but she has enough to think about now. She still plays but she seems more serious about it...

So that's my home life right now. Between diaper changes, anyway.

Linkspam: fannish/geeky, misc.

Jul. 24th, 2017 11:19 pm
umadoshi: (lilacs 01)
[personal profile] umadoshi
Fannish/Geeky Things

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] sgamadison, an update on Stargate Origins: be aware that the new digital episodes are only going to be ten minutes each.

"A Woman, Explaining Things". [Sarah Gailey on the casting of the thirteenth Doctor]

"Towards a Definition of “Fanfiction”: 3,564 people took our survey. Here’s what we learned". [Fansplaining]

"Does God exist in the Marvel Universe?" [Salon]

"Akiko Higashimura's Princess Jellyfish Manga Ends on August 25". [ANN]


Miscellaneous

"Radical Cartography" is...hard for me to describe. Very cool things with maps...and stuff...?

"All of my work on the “Irish slaves” meme (2015–’16)". In case you ever need to debunk the "but the Irish were slaves too!" crap that some flavors of racists like to whip out.

"Gratitude for Invisible Systems: One way to improve democracy is for more people to appreciate its complex technological underpinnings".

"My Father Spent 30 Years In Prison. Now He's Out". This is lovely and heartbreaking.

"Updated Syllabus for Journalism 101". [McSweeney's]

"This Is How Tough It Can Actually Be To Follow High School Prom Dress Codes". [Buzzfeed]

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] bell, "When Your Teacher Keeps Saying You Can’t Draw Cats, But Your Paintings Are Photorealistic".

"Make a Magical Carpet Cat Hammock With an Old Towel".

"This Guy Spent A Year Exploring The Subculture Of Competitive Punning".

"How to Fall Down". [Lifehacker]

"Sapphic Stories || Around the world". "Sapphic Stories – Around the world does not intend to be a rec list that is ultimate and finalized, but just the beginning of a search for more pluralized stories. There are many other stories out there that we need to look for. Still, I believe that this post could be a nice start so that people can recognize these stories set in the places they grew up in or to know more about what it means to be sapphic in other places. This list contains F/F fiction books, books that have at least one women who feel romantic/sexual attraction to women, short stories, anthologies, and nonfiction about how it is to be LGBT+ in some places of the world."

"tim walker photographs all black cast for alice in wonderland themed pirelli calendar".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] dine, "Superb Cut Paper Artworks by Pippa Dyrlaga".

Domesticity Isn't Pretty

Jul. 24th, 2017 09:46 pm
bjarvis: (Default)
[personal profile] bjarvis
Our home life has become a little weird lately. Well, weirder.

[profile] cuyahogarvr's youngest daughter & her husband are expecting a baby boy, due Oct 5. Elodie, currently two years old, will be promoted to big sister, but I'm sure she's not going to enjoy having to share the spotlight with a younger brother. That's all good news and not that weird.

Maurita is experiencing something of a high-risk pregnancy, as she did with Elodie in 2015. And we're taking the same steps as before: she & Elodie have moved in with us so that she stay rested, have some help with Elodie, and so that she has constant company in case of any emergency. The husband, Lucas, is visiting & staying with us as long as he can, but they still have four dogs at their house which need attention & care, as well as his fulltime job.

We expect as well that the baby may arrive somewhat earlier than Oct 5: Elodie was a month early. In any case, Maurita will need some post-partum recovery time, and there will be a newborn and a toddler to care for, so they will be with us for probably a month following delivery.

So yeah, weird. We're once again up to our eyeballs in diapers, kids toys and other such family fun. For another three months, give or take.

So let's throw another layer of weird on top of that.

We had initially be working on a plan for Maurita & Lucas to buy the house next door to us. Our neighbourhood is much closer to Lucas' work so it would reduce his commute by an hour each way; we're near the Metro; our county's schools are much better than the ones in their county, on average; they would have a built-in daycare & babysitting service next door (ie. us).

Unfortunately, we haven't been able to come to terms with our neighbour. He wants to move to Florida, he's looking to sell, and he had a golden opportunity to sell without real estate commissions, but while he agreed to a particular selling price, he kept moving the goal posts in terms of the closing costs, post-sale access to the garage to remove his stuff at leisure, the closing date, etc.. After fairly intense negotiations through June, we collectively gave up on that plan. Tim has since admitted he was going a little far, and has approached us twice since to see if we would be willing to re-open negotiations but the kids have already found another larger place ten minutes' drive from here for the same base price. It's not as convenient a location as next door, but it's pretty good.

We don't have a closing date for their new house yet as we're still going through the motions of inspections and remediations, but there are no show-stoppers on the horizon and since the owner only used the house as a summer home a couple of months per year, there's no occupying family needing time to coordiante their exit. I expect a settlement date in early August. No renovations are needed, just some paint here & there to relieve the monotony of the existing beige interior.

The sale of their current house is taking more effort. We helped move much of their furnishings & possessions into a storage pod over the past few weekends, and it has been staged for sale. A buyer appeared at the first open house at the asking price, but there was a long (and rather unreasonable) list of contingencies the buyer wants. Yes, we expected some requests as fixing a stair bannister and unsticking a window, but asking the house be entirely rewired and the kitchen renovated is beyond reason. I presume it's just a bargaining tactic: they can drop 50% of their laundry list for a small decrease in the price of the house and appear to be reasonable, even when the list itself was utterly unreasonable.

The kids are taking care of some of the sensible items currently. Even if this current deal falls apart, they would still be needed for some future buyer. Since we helped pay off their existing mortgage, we have disconnected the purchase of their new home from the sale of the old, so they could walk away from this current buyer if needed, and perhaps rent out the house for a couple of years before eventually selling it. There are many options.

So that's my home life at the moment. Never a dull moment, although one would be very nice right now.

7.5 - 5.7

Jul. 24th, 2017 05:38 pm
jhameia: ME! (Default)
[personal profile] jhameia
Well, I took a hydrocoxine last night, and it threw me for a loop in which I couldn't wake up early enough for my liking, and was really groggy. My body felt really heavy, and I'm still feeling the effects this afternoon. But! It was otherwise a decent day: my friend Jose texted me around 1pm about a Legendary raid, and there was a crowd of people when I got there! I feel I should have been a bit more sociable, but I was not trying to evade my dissertation today. And we defeated it! And I got the Articuno! Yay!

My doctor also had good news for me today: my blood sugar level, which had been at 7.5, way at the top of the Type 2 diabetes range, has scaled down to 5.7. My doctor is very impressed; he's never seen such a fast turnover before. If there ever was a moment for the Glow of Virtue, this was totally it. My bad cholesterol level is on the high end, but it's balanced out by the good cholesterol, so yay I guess. I'm hoping to knock the 5.7 down to 5 by the time I see him again in September. My insurance is until the 24th, so that's enough time for one more blood test.

I am considering buying weights, just a couple of dumbbells, for building arm strength. I'm going to sit on this for a while and see how I feel in a couple of weeks. I'm going to dig out some unused sheets and try using those as exercise mats, though. My brother uses a folded old blanket.

Not swimming today; the sky's too cloudy and I don't like swimming in a cold pool. I guess I SHOULD get used to that, though. It's so nice, so I lament not taking advantage of the cloudy sky to go for a morning hike. Maybe I can do that tomorrow!

Monday Yardening

Jul. 24th, 2017 07:42 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today we picked up three piles of grass and some sticks.  It is pleasantly cool this evening, but there are sweat bees everywhere.  >_<  I do not enjoy being licked by insects. 

Two questions

Jul. 24th, 2017 07:55 pm
james_davis_nicoll: (Default)
[personal profile] james_davis_nicoll
I wonder how long it will take the shadowy figures behind the Dragon Awards to count the votes?

I wonder to what degree the award has been gamed by the puppies?