hr_macgirl: (created via imagestation)
Last summer, my sister's Rhodesian ridgeback mix died, just before she was scheduled to take a long vacation (my sister, not the dog, although the dog was going to have to go into the kennel). Sassy was a great dog, quite high strung, but an integral part of the family. None of us knew how old she was as she was a rescue. Towards the end of her life, she got all grey around her muzzle, but she never stopped barking at the UPS man.

It made me think about Toby. He turned 12 last autumn, definitely old for a cocker spaniel. Sassy's illness and subsequent death reinforced Toby's age, when last month Toby had a serious health scare. He went several days without eating, and was vomiting frequently. Instead of being content to sit in the house, he wanted to be outside, in my parents' back yard. My Dad could tell Toby was in pain, but there was nothing he could do about it. Toby also lost several pounds in weight.

After some veterinary care, it was determined that Toby didn't have any sort of blockage, but he did eventually recover. His digestive system is a little more fragile than before (my parents have started wetting his food down so he doesn't gobble it as quickly). Still, there's no doubt he's an old dog. When I was out at my parents' recently, Toby was more reluctant to go for walks (Dad and I managed to get him around the block most mornings, but Toby doesn't really like going to the park anymore). He's also mostly deaf, and my parents have had to start using hand signals to communicate with him.

How long will he last: six months? A year? When I think of how much fun I've had with Toby, the idea of the impending end upsets me. I took some fabulous trips to stay with him while my parents were both away and not away. I think the ones when they were away were the best. I had no other duties apart from to keep Toby occupied and to do the same with myself. I went to lots of yoga classes and took Toby for lots of walks. He slept on my bed and we generally bonded.

Toby isn't gone yet, but I'm afraid of the inevitable. Each trip back to my parents' makes me wonder if I will see him again.
hr_macgirl: (created via imagestation)
Tuesday: didn't even try and go swimming, but did make it to a yoga class with Marni Task. Her yoga style, unlike what I take at home, is "jivamukti with anusara flair", whatever that means! All I know is the room was hot (advertised at 82-85F), so I sat next to the exterior door and prayed for a draft breeze.

The teacher started talking about ayurveda and the three types, and used that as the basis for class. It didn't make alot of sense, I only knew I wasn't kapha (calm, heavy bone frame, slow eater, slow speaker, slow walker, have a hard time waking in the morning).

After yoga I dashed off (see? I'm not kapha!) to Skyline and ate a three way with milk and oyster crackers. Plus lots of hot sauce. Yummmm. My next stop was Half Priced Books (briefly) and World Market. I purchased a 1kg bar of Cadbury Dairy Milk at World Market, plus some tea for Dad. On the way back to work I stopped at Miles Market and picked up another pie. This was #3 (Mum had bought one Apple and one Fruits of the Forest before I arrived, but I knew that wouldn't last), and I chose Blackberry, which is my favourite.

I then spent Tuesday afternoon hacking on a Windows 2000 laptop trying to get it to talk to ancient CNC Hardware (after wiping the machine & the viruses it had accumulated). Vacation? Who needs vacation? Managed to get out of work at 5, stopped to pick up some dinner (Teriyaki Stirfry with chicken & veggies) and home.

I could have packed on Tuesday night but didn't; did that Wednesday morning instead. Note that aside from Monday when I planned to swim, I didn't set an alarm the whole time I was away. One morning I slept until 6, which was a shocker. The rest of the time I woke between 5 & 5:30.

Mum and Dad had a customer coming into the office to see them, so I dropped Mum off at work while Toby and I stopped for a Hot Chocolate then I took him for a walk. He was well behaved, and I only had to drag him a little ways before he realized he wanted to walk after all. We were back at the office for about 9:30, 9:45. We went out to lunch at a soup place around the corner just before noon.

My flight was due to go at 3:30, so Mum had me at the airport for 2:00. Through security, annoyed that the only good shop at Cleveland airport was gone (the bookshop), went to gate C16 to wait. I found myself an electrical plug and whiled away the time until flight was called at 2:50. We actually left a little early, and I was (predictably) asleep just after push back. Through diligence I had scored an exit row seat, but it was a non-reclining seat. Of course, I can sleep (almost) anywhere, so I wasn't too perturbed by my posture.

We landed almost half an hour early, and I took some time to sniff through a couple of duty free shops looking for yet more Dairy Milk chocolate. Unfortunately, while two shops had chocolate, one had some that was past date, and another had only Dairy Milk with Whole Nuts. I will need to find another source for my chocolatey goodness.

The trip home wasn't bad. Wednesdays are pretty good for travelling, it seems, as I was able to score seats on the Silver Li(n)e and Red Line. Once I reached home I ran out to the grocery store to pick up milk and figured everything else could wait until Thursday. I typically have yoga on Wednesday evening but I didn't get home until 6:50, and would have had to walk right back out the door again. I will have to wait.

redux )

off to see the nephew next week for his first birthday. So excited!
hr_macgirl: (Default)
Sunday: woke up, prepared cake #3, put it in oven. Took Toby to a park in a nearby town. The weather was fabulous and I left my jacket in the car during the walk. My Dad was skeptical, but stripped off his own coat before we'd reached halfway around the lake. Later we ate lunch al fresco, talked to various family members (including the mega-cute nephew via video chat), did lots of reading. Second dog walk.

Cake #3 came out and #4 went in, but that caused a bit of a SNAFU with dinner planning. In the end we picked up salads and a pizza. After walk #2 I had a nap. I don't even remember what we did after dinner.

I had hoped to go swimming on Monday, and I got as far as walking into the pool, but they wanted a driving license with a local address. I had to turn around and drive home, where I took a hot shower and then chilled out. Dad was already at work, but Mum and I took Toby out for a walk, then we put cake #5 in the oven before going to work. I did some tech stuff, spent some time fussing Toby, then came home for yet another nap (after taking said cake out of the oven).

Mum and I made some cards after dinner. We'd talked about seeing a film (on DVD) but didn't get around to it.

Tuesday: perhaps a yoga class, perhaps not. Work. And then online checkin, as my 24-hour time limit will hit. Time flies!
hr_macgirl: (splash)

Where the hell did November come from? I can look at my calendar right now and accept that October is gone, but memories of the days are rather fuzzy. Swim. Work. Pie. Nephew.

And now it's November, and daylight saving time left us. I get a bit grumpy at the time change in November, as people who are usually not earlybirds feel smug by the artificial time change that allows them to arrive at work earlier or whatever. It never lasts, mind you, and they'll fall off the bandwagon. But it meant the pool was busy on Monday morning; I had to share a lane, even (hate that!).

Stream of consciousness follows, fair warning!! )

Posted via
hr_macgirl: (created via imagestation)
woke up in the night when Dad left the house for work, then fell back to sleep. Woke up again ~0600 and went down for breakfast. I ate in front of the television (watching Miracle on 34th Street). Before too long, Mum woke up and we took Toby to the park for his first walk of the day.

After that we stopped at a local supplier for their business, then went to work. Mum gave me a company check so I could buy Dad's new iMac, then I dashed out the door to my 0945 yoga class. The class was good, I really like teacher and I've had her before. The only minus is that the class was in a 80-85F heated room. Yuck. I sweated; 'nuff said.

After class it was off to Apple where I was assigned to a sales guy who felt let down when I wouldn't let him try and use his "talents" to help me decide what I wanted. (I want a 20" 2.66GHz iMac him: errr.... do you need a printer? any other software? Do you have any questions? me: no, no, no). I didn't use the "I have 150 Macs" line, which is just as effective).

I left the Apple store and put the iMac in the car trunk (plus for the car, an Infiniti: it has an iPod dock built in, so I plugged my iPhone into the dock connector and was able to control the unit from the car's audio panel. A nice feature! The car also has butt warming seats, which wasn't as necessary, as it was 45F. I didn't even wear a jacket after yoga class, although that was as much from my internal temperature than anything else. After Apple I swung by a local organic café for lunch, then back to the office to set up the iMac.

I'd never really used Apple's Migration Assistant before, but it was great! I firewire targeted Dad's old Quicksilver PowerMac G4 to the new iMac while running Software Update (from 10.5.4 to 10.5.6). It took maybe 60-75 minutes to transfer the data and run the software update. I'm really quite impressed by the whole process. I even fixed Dad's printing issues; his MDD G4 (on Tiger) couldn't talk to the printer, but it can now.

After setting up the machine I decided it would be a good time to take Toby for a(nother) walk. Mum, eager to get out, volunteered to come along. We went to a local arboretum and trekked through the mud, finding ourselves eight feet muddier after the fact (two for me, two for Mum, four for Toby). Home afterwards, not for a nap, but we chilled out. She crocheted and I did puzzles.

Dad came home from work early, then we went to a local eatery for dinner. Toby was full of beans again by the time we got home, so I ran around the back yard with him for a few minutes. We finished watching the movie while I caught up with my email and everything else. I usualy don't bring my own laptop to Ohio, but did this time and really like having it along.

Tuesday: Toby walk, yoga, probably Skyline (again). Yum!
hr_macgirl: (Default)
I spent Labor Day weekend at the parents' (more than Labor Day, actually, Friday through Tuesday). They're likely to be moving house some time in the near future, so part of the time was spent cleaning out old childhood items.

The first challenge was books. I have a whole pile of Enid Blyton books, left over from childhood. I started reading them when I was in England, but when we moved to the states I kept reading them, and would bulk up my backstock whenever we went home. My favourite series was Malory Towers. I've got at least one copy of all six books, two copies of some of them. The oldest ones are pretty dog eared.

Speaking of dog eared, I spent lots of time with Toby, generally having fun. We went on dog walks, just chilled out. Not too chilled; Ohio was rather warm, in fact. Dad and I picked Toby up from the groomer's on Friday, and he jumped all over me in glee. Although he might have done that to anyone who sprung him from that place. They do a nice job cutting him, but when not directly handling him, he has to stay in a cage. Toby is not a cage dog; he's used to having His Way, often involved sitting on something very soft (except when it's very hot, when he likes to sprawl himself across the bathroom floor and warm it/cool himself).

I also ate some good meals, good food in general, mostly pie. Not that there wasn't other good food (like salmon sandwiches; talk about nostalgic!!), including locally sourced berries and sweet corn. I also slept alot: one nap on each day, and didn't get up at 5am each day (just two out of five, although on the other three I was still up before six). We watched some good movies (including Juno and The Final Cut, the latter of which is a British political thriller) and I was reading about five different books, none of which I finished.

After cleaning out Enid Blyton (or, more accurately, getting rid of most books and keeping the important EBs) I sat down and tackled my bedroom closet. A bunch of my sister's school papers had somehow ended up in my closet; not sure how that happened, given it was my closet!

I came across a whole pile of items, including a notebook from my first computer programming class (autumn 1983, BASIC, taught on Apple ][e). Looking over the notes, it was a pretty thorough class! We had lecture once per week and lab once per week. By the end of the class I knew more than the teachers, having spent every possible spare minute in the computer lab practicing and learning.

I also found photos from when I worked at Geauga Lake, mostly taken in the Seasons Passes trailer. Take a camera and nearly unlimited polaroid film and a laminator, add a pile of silly girls and that equals lots of extra photos, often of each other, but sometimes of visitors. There were photos from college, but none of [ profile] mdyesowitch (since I'd saved those, and the ones I found this past weekend were clearly those I'd deliberately meant to lose).

Then there were old journals and diaries and other miscellaneous writings from high school. Just reading them breaks my heart. Was I that young? That idealistic? Line from one entry: I'm happy, I'm calm, let's stay. What I wrote it about is (almost) irrelevant. I hated being fourteen, but looking back now I wonder what I might have done differently.

Needless to say, the journals, diaries & writings did not end up in the "throw away" pile. We still threw away several bags of items and had about eight bags of books to donate to the library book sale. Progress!
hr_macgirl: (Default)
three days away )

Home now. Laundry. Note to self: avoid Marathon on Monday. Safest to just avoid Boston altogether, I think.

I am very very glad I went on the trip. I actually allowed myself to relax. That doesn't happen very often, and didn't even happen the past few times I visited my parents. It was an unexpected surprise.
hr_macgirl: (Default)
I decided on Tuesday (April 15) that I wanted to visit my parents for the (long) weekend. I went online and found a not horrible fare, and two days later I was on a plane.

I am now sitting in my parents' office with the dog. He loves me, even though he badly needs a haircut. He almost looks like a cock-a-poo he's so curly!

This morning my mother and I took Toby for a walk and then went to yoga class. The weather is beautiful; 65F! On the way back from yoga, we stopped at my favourite (local) grocery store that makes my favourite (local) blackberry pie. Yummmmm.
hr_macgirl: (Ski)
Toby has competition from Marley, the cutest puppy you have ever seen!

not that Toby was a slouch in his puppy days.
hr_macgirl: (Ski)
I gave another iPhone out to a user today; I really feel like Santa Claus! Everyone who has received one is thrilled to bits. This user had never used an iPhone before, but after a 10 minute walkthrough, she was navigating around like a pro.

On my way across the bridge today I noted that river ice is "FILO". If FIFO is First In/First Out, and LIFO is Last In, First Out, then river ice is first in, last out. The shallowest waters still had some remnants of ice left (less by now, given the balmy temperatures in the mid-50s), but the deeper middle of the river had completely thawed. This was, of course, a reverse of when the ice set in: shallows first, deep last.

Trying to determine if I want to go (back) to see Toby over MLK weekend. There are so many reasons to go, and so many reasons not to go, and I'm horribly indecisive at the best of times, and now is not the best of times by any stretch.
hr_macgirl: (Default)
It took me more time preparing lunch & dinner for today than it did to get my suitcase & carryon ready for this weekend's jaunt to visit my parents and Toby.
what's in the suitcase:
  • xmas pudding
  • baking tin for mince pies
  • slippers
  • DVDs
  • clothes for walking the dog
  • five books, including Frederick Forsyth's The Day of the Jackal and Alastair Campbell's diaries.
  • puzzle magazine, mostly uncompleted

    The boarding passes are printed (sequence numbers 7 & 8, but Elite privileges mean that we're seated forward anyways!). I signed myself and my father up for flight notification. I finish work at 1500, the flight is just before 1800. With any luck there won't be any weather delays!
  • hr_macgirl: (Default)
    parental visit highs:
  • apple pie my mother made
  • lots of toby time. he is sitting by my feet right now.
  • afternoon naps
  • watched the deal, on HBO. I don't get HBO at home, so this was a nice treat (and good show!).
  • hot chocolate along with my BLT at lunch today

    parental visit challenges:
  • went with parents to a community theatre play on saturday night. it ran very late; I didn't leave there until 2230. Typically I am abed by 2150 and asleep by 2220. Still, I broke out of my routine and went. I still can't separate the discomfort in routine disruption from my feelings for the play itself. I didn't get to bed until 2300.
  • more routine stuff: I've moved around some meal/snack times to accomodate the daily goings-on. Again, challenging....
  • their macmini was sick (some catalog issue), and I ended up having to do an archive-and-install. neither diskwarrior nor techtool were able to repair anything, and fsck -fy found about 30 instances of corruption.

    parental visit lows:
  • the temperature. brrrr!

    not parental visit related:
  • the database upgrade this weekend seems to have gone well. so far?
  • hr_macgirl: (Default)
    I met all of my goals for the trip (even though I only went to one yoga class, that was mostly due to the schedule over Labor Day weekend). Considering that last Thursday I was ambivalent about how much effort I wanted to make about relaxing (rather than continuing to grind myself into a rut), this is no small accomplishment.

    While away I saw Once at a local cinema, Breach on DVD, Little Miss Sunshine, which my Dad had DVRed for my mother and I, and one of my Dad's all-time favourites, Tora! Tora! Tora!. Only a lack of time resulted in us not being able to screen all of The Day of the Jackal (my Dad promised to save it for my next visit).

    I also started and finished reading four books and started another one, spent quite a bit of time doing crossword puzzles, and generally had a good time. In terms of food there was blackberry pie, stir-fry beef, more blackberry pie, fresh peaches & raspberries, fresh corn (the peaches, raspberries & corn came from the local farmer's market), more blackberry pie, and a really nice dinner out at a Tex-Mex place that I haven't been to in years. And naps, lots of naps. Thursday on the plane, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday on the plane. Bliss!

    The trip back went very smoothly: we left a minute early and arrived a few minutes early. The only hitch was the public transit back from the airport: we waited 20 minutes before a vehicle arrived, and then three arrived in quick succession. What a li(n)e!

    The big question is where to go from here. I don't yet know.

    quiet day

    Aug. 31st, 2007 08:32 pm
    hr_macgirl: (Default)
    the day began at my usual time. Toby had chosen not to sleep with me, he stayed with Mum and Dad instead. I ate breakfast (was quite hungry), and before long I heard the "jingle" of Toby's collar indicating that he was awake. Mum and I took Toby for a walk, then I dropped both of them at work before I went off to a yoga class.

    The class was more vigorous than I am used to, and I sweated and sweated. After a stop at the adjacent Trader Joe's (for lunch supplies) and another local market (for pie), I went back to the office. I spent the day puttering around the office, installing software (on the Macs) and beating the viruses out of the brain dead Windows machines (one of them had almost 700 infected items on it!)

    I came home and had a sleep, and when Mum and Dad got home, we went to a TexMex place for dinner. I drove home (a plus for them: a teetotal daughter). We sat on the front porch and read while Toby sniffed around. After we came in, I hads lovely slice of blackberry pie. Both of my parents are now snoozing.

    Tomorrow: Toby time, library, car shopping. Maybe a movie.

    For the record, goals for the trip: love Toby, go to yoga, try to relax, and avoid scales.
    hr_macgirl: (Default)
    of the four and a half trips I've taken so far this summer, they've all gone remarkably smoothly! I didn't think about it ahead of time, but that meant I was in for a Delay. One can only take so many flights without getting something thrown in the way.

    [ profile] ckd and I met for lunch before I hopped the bus for the airport. While at lunch I checked my flight's status (love my iPhone) and saw that the airline marked my flight as departing about ten minutes late "due to late arrival of the aircraft". Weighing the options, I chose to proceed immediately to the airport rather than dallying.

    I arrived and went straight to "re"-print my boarding pass (I'd never printed the original, just did online check-in so I could move from 19B to 7C). The line for security looked very long, so I went and chilled out in the lounge for a while (this particular lounge is outside security, something that will change when this airline moves terminals later in the year). After a quick stop to use the facilities and read, I exited the lounge to find the security line almost nil. Ahhhh.

    Through security (cursing Richard Reid while I was at it), re-tie my shoes, lump down to the gate. There were huge fans everywhere. Indeed, the whole section of the terminal seemed ... underventilated. I sat and read some of the newspaper I'd brought with me.

    The gate agent came on the overhead and announced that we were taking a delay due to maintenance. At first she pronounced our boarding time at 1445, then 1415, then 1345. Given that it was 1340, the latter seemed impossible! Indeed, 1415 was closest to the original estimate, and we pushed back just before 1500. I read (and read and read), and after takeoff listened to music and did puzzles.

    This flight was also unusual (never mind the delay) in that I had an empty seat next to me! The woman in 7A boarded with a friend (who was sitting further back) and I could tell she was eyeing the seat for her friend, but I put my book, puzzle magazine, anything I could think of into the (spare) 7B, and then fell asleep so she couldn't ask if I minded. Yes I minded!

    We landed at about 1615 and were at the gate for 1625, later than the 1556 scheduled. My mother came to meet me, and as a special treat, brought the dog. They were both happy to see me (but my mother didn't wag her tail or slobber all over me the way the dog did).
    hr_macgirl: (Default)
    I'd originally thought that I would have four trips this summer: two work, two not work. I most recently returned from (the ultra white, ultra-conservative) Salt Lake City, which was for a work conference, just last week. When I left for SLC, I had intended for it to be my final trip for the summer. However, the trip went so poorly that I made a (somewhat) rash decision and pulled the trigger on a fifth (out of four) trip, not for work.

    This weekend (Labor Day in the USA) I travel to my parents', where I intend to go to yoga classes, spend time with the dog, and read. I don't relax well (I'm not a relaxer by nature), but this sounds pretty close to relaxing as far as I'm concerned.
    hr_macgirl: (Default)
    I'm in the 22 hours between trips, back at home before leaving for the west coast on Monday.

    My original idea had been to go to the west coast directly from my parents', but that was too complicated. Now I wish I'd gone with complicated. Ugh. Home, unpack, pack. That's tonight. Tomorrow is work, shrinkage, work, then leave, home, last minute packing, airport. Somewhere in there I need to hit WFM.

    My sister's party went very well. Aside from my sister and my (soon to be) brother-in-law, the stars were the wedding cake (aka English xmas cake with marzipan and icing), my iPhone, and the dog. Toby managed to sit in an adjacent tent during the meal, and behaved rather well. Later on he got more rambunctious, but that's probably a heat thing.

    Bed. Sleep.

    early plans

    Jul. 5th, 2007 08:15 am
    hr_macgirl: (Default)
    arrived at parents' yesterday. The flight (EMB-145) was almost completely full. Ugh I forgot how tiny these Jungle Jets are. I sat in 4A, which was a single seat. Plus: noone sitting next to me, near to the front. Minus: cabin slopes a great deal, made it difficult to store my bag underneath. I slept about 20 minutes, then did puzzles and watched Spooks on my iPhone.

    My Dad is enraptured with my iPhone; and what's not to love? He loves Cover Flow (just like my Apple TV) and spent part of yesterday afternoon watching Wimbledon while listening to the Beatles on my iPhone. Later we watched An Ungentlemanly Act, a BBC Film about the Falklands from the perspective of the residents of the Islands. It must have been good, as it kept Dad awake.

    This morning I was the last person in the house to get out of bed, and that was at 0545!! We took Toby for an early walk around the lake (he made it all the way around), meeting lots of other dogs and people (some of which were nice and some weren't. Both the dogs AND the people, that is). My parents are sitting on the back deck now. I just booked myself for an 0930 yoga class (yay me). Afterwards, I will meet my mother in the abutting Trader Joes and we will Shop.

    My Aunt, Uncle & cousins arrive later, three by air and one by land. I hope I have time for a real nap as I didn't get one yesterday and really needed it.

    long day

    Jun. 30th, 2007 09:27 pm
    hr_macgirl: (Default)
    going backwards from now:
  • watched "Air Emergency" with [ profile] ckd
  • talked to my sister, told her about my dress
  • had afternoon nap
  • saw Ratatouille with [ profile] ckd
  • rode very hot train
  • found dress for my sister's wedding!!
  • had stranger drool over my iPhone while on the bus
  • went for haircut
  • found out from my mother that Toby did something Naughty (and Not Nice at that).

    for tomorrow, from beginning to end:
  • errands as usual
  • yoga in the morning with new teacher. Not looking forward to that.
  • have to source marzipan for my sister's wedding cake. I got the last lot from an ASDA in Crossharbour. That is a bit far to go on a Sunday.
  • afternoon nap (I didn't get one on Friday, y'see, so having a second one this weekend is absolutely a must).
  • laundry, laundry, more laundry

    on the plus side, the weather was a touch warm today, but the next few days seem reasonable enough.
  • hr_macgirl: (Default)
    the weekend away went very well. highlights included:

    • baking not just one, but two christmas/wedding cakes for my sister's celebrations later this summer.
    • blackberry pie, with either fresh cream or custard
    • naps on three days
    • lots of Toby time
    • flight back arrived 20 minutes early, and we were home just nine minutes after we left the airport.

    my hip feels improved, even though I probably pushed it a little too hard on Sunday. I'm still doing double daily NSAIDs, but will talk to my primary care doc when I see her on Wednesday. I'm trying not to think about Wednesday too much.

    we got an Apple TV!! [ profile] ckd talked my parents into getting one, so my Dad bought two, one for us and one for them. [ profile] ckd then set my parents' unit up. They're thrilled - Dad can listen to music on the first floor again. They haven't been able to do that for about six months, when one of the speakers that was attached to the old (~28 year) stereo met an unfortunate end. We made sure they had plenty of music seeded from their MacMini. Dad has been burning CDs from the collection on his Mini to take into work.

    A firecracker just went off not far from here. Toby wouldn't like that very much! (he's very afraid of noises, especially "pop" noises, but also the rumble of thunder).

    I go back to my parents' in a few weeks for the first of my sister's celebrations. And all being well, I'll book the tickets (for myself and [ profile] ckd to the second celebration within the next day or two. Gotta get that nailed down.

    Time for bed. No rest until Friday.
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