well this has been quite the day

This was from yesterday but it’s a nice visual representation of how I feel – like there’s something looking over my shoulder / standing on my back / looking to keep me down. It was actually just Eric being lovey and headbutting me in the back of the head. But you get the idea.

So apparently I have a few numbers that are too high on my last blood test. The one number has been steadily increasing over the last year so I’ll be going to see a hematologist sometime reasonably soon. Not excited. It’s not that I mind seeing another doctor but sick people go to doctors and right now I do NOT want to be around sick people.

I also get to go have another blood draw in two weeks to address the other numbers. Again, not that I really mind but my veins don’t always cooperate so needles aren’t always my friend. I’ll deal.

I did manage to make myself appear competent this morning, just long enough to give a presentation.

I seldom dress up anymore and I decided that’s a shame. I have a closet full of adorable clothes that are getting no love right now. So I got out a cute shirt, put on jewelry and makeup, and then a pair of jeans for the bottom half. No one sees my ass anymore except Lancelot. Now that the presentation is over and I’m back to being a hermit I’m back in a t-shirt and I look like a 12 year old boy. It’s all good.

Garth stole my last few bites of granola bar this morning and proceeded to make a huge mess on my desk. He’s an odd little cat, he actually did eat some of it. Bastard licked all of it so I wasn’t about to finish it.

and still I’ve got nothing to show you

So I guess that’s not entirely true, I just have no knitting to show you. I’ve been knitting, I just don’t seem capable of remembering to take a picture of what I’ve accomplished. Not that I’ve been knitting on the shawl a ton, but I am making progress. But there are washcloths to knit, too.

Pippy would much rather I scratched her ears than knit, but she’ll put up with me being distracted. It’s kind of funny, the cats are interested in the yarn and she’s interested in the knitting needles.

I did want to show you where I spend my days now.

That’s the wall behind me. There is an interesting mix of things that had been in the basement, in my old bedroom, and at the office. The photos on the closet door are from all of my international trips. I’ve brought almost everything that had been in my office on campus back home. I figure I spend most of my time in here now I might as well have it setup the way I like. And I really do think it helps having this one room where I basically just work and can shut the door and walk away at the end of the day.

The house in general is just about done and that makes me very happy. I’m ready to have some nice relaxing weekends. This last weekend was actually quite lovely. We had our monthly massage appointments, went to a specialty tea shop so I could stock up on loose leaf tea, and did our grocery run. Our date night take out was from a MediterraneanĀ  restaurant and it was amazing.

the importance of self-care during a plague

My guess is that we’re all struggling right now, some more than others. For those of us working from home there are some parts of our lives that are now easier, pants being completely optional would be one of them. But there’s also the whole issue of losing track of time and working a 12 hour day when you didn’t intend to. Balance is crucial, and damn is it hard.

And even when we know these things, we don’t always practice them. I am not ashamed to admit that I got overwhelmed and stopped doing all of the things I know help, and that lead to feeling even more overwhelmed. Sometimes you have to hit your own reset button. Hard.

Pippy and Eric realized that Mama needed some love and declared a truce long enough to snuggle with me. Of course then Eric decided that biting me on the arm, back in that really tender area, was a great idea. Little brat.

This is the lamp I was telling y’all about. It makes me happy to see all of my little baby yarn balls because I remember the projects I used them in. The lamp and shade came from Target and weren’t overly expensive. And yes, a million years ago I crocheted the doily it’s sitting on. I haven’t tried doing that in so long I’m not sure I can anymore.

Pippy finally got to see the groomer this week and she looks like a whole new puppy, like half of a puppy. She’s very long and lean and will never be too big to sit on Daddy’s lap. And that smile on Lancelot’s face? That’s part of why I fell in love with him.

I do spend a good chunk of my week days in my office so I frequently end up having Eric and Pippy in here with me. Yesterday they were having a debate over who got to have some ribbons that came on a package I got.

I have also been knitting, which is definitely one of my self-care activities. I’ve got two wash cloths done and I’m continuing to work on the shawl. But for two nights I didn’t really cook much of anything and the laundry is much further behind that I would like. However, my sanity is much more intact than it was and that’s more important than damn near anything else.

running as fast as I can but one foot is nailed to the floor

Seriously, it’s not Friday? Are you sure? FUCK.

Anyway, life is life and I’m still totally thankful but GODDAMNIT WHY DO I WORK WITH FUCKING MORONS???

Sorry, that was 100% necessary. Really, it was. I’ve got a good person being held back by red tape and a fucking monkey holding the tape dispenser. I hate it when that happens.

And it’s time for our annual performance evaluations and I really hate that. Yes, totally glad I have a job right now and that this job allows me to work from home during The Plague. Honest. But I always get seriously freaked out about losing my job, partially because they just eliminated 13 positions in our unit. Some of those people had been here for their entire careers and were on the verge of retirement. I shit you not.

Yes, I am wound a little tight right now, why do you ask? And I find myself in need of a stronger word than “fuck” because that’s just not cutting it anymore.

On the plus side of things – I don’t have to cook tonight because I have a variety of leftovers in the fridge. I have a quilling kit from Lancelot that I haven’t opened yet but might try to get into tonight. I got to see Mom this morning and get a hug. And I have lots of music I can listen to that will hopefully help soothe this savage beast.

I just need to get myself through the next few days, I can do that, right?

 

 

planning a wedding during a plague

Ok, so this isn’t quite a plague, more a pandemic, but still. We’re getting married in August and I’m hoping like hell that I have enough time to pull this off.

In all fairness, not quite 4 months is not a lot of time to plan a wedding EVER. There are a lot of moving parts, details, vendors, and just plain other people involved. And I have done this whole “wedding” thing before – three other times to be precise – but never with so little time to get everything ready. And never during a global pandemic.

The first time I got married I had a few years to pull things together. I had the big white church wedding with a catered reception at a hotel and the gigantic fancy cake. We divorced three years later.

My second wedding was done in the back yard by a Justice of the Peace. Much smaller and low-key, I wore Birkenstocks with a sundress. I had less than a year to plan, but still a reasonable amount of time given how small. I was with him for ten years.

My third wedding was planned rather quickly and took place at the courthouse. It was my least favorite, mostly because my groom was drunk during the entire reception, and for most of our marriage.

So I’ve had a variety of experiences.

This time we’ll be having an officiant (I’m not sure what else to call her) and have a custom ceremony, somewhere near trees. (I’d like to be more specific but I don’t even know yet.) I’ve ordered my dress and it actually looks more like a wedding dress than anything I’ve worn in many a moon. I’ve ordered jewelry that I think will go beautifully with it. I’ve ordered flowers that are artificial – wood – that I’ll be able to keep long after the ceremony. And I’ve been ordering everything now because it still might not arrive in time. Because pandemic.

I’m still hoping (HOPING) that we’ll be able to have the ceremony. Right now they’re starting to loosen the restrictions here but that could change. We aren’t planning to have a big ceremony with a lot of people but still. And I already know that the reception may not be until weeks or months later. I’m fine with that.

I’m going to marry my knight in shining armor, that’s what matters to me.

why is meatball tuesday not a thing?

While I was trying to get the dog to come in the other morning, something that’s becoming more of a challenge, I managed to get this picture of a bumblebee in the grape hyacinths. And that’s good because those flowers are being destroyed by the dog. If she’s not digging in the beds she’s laying on the flowers, sunning herself. I’m not exactly impressed.

In other news I have pretty well lost track of how long I’ve been doing this “work from home” thing though my research this morning suggests it’s been since March 23rd, so that’s roughly 1000 weeks, right? Don’t get me wrong, I feel very fortunate to still be employed and earning a salary, totally. I’m not exactly excited that we’ve been told we’ll be operating like this likely the whole summer. Not thrilled.

I have to admit that it’s nicer now that I have a proper office space to work in and I have an extra monitor for my laptop. That’s actually helping a lot.

The house is coming along nicely. The only area that’s still being worked on is Lancelot’s man cave, formerly known as my office in the basement. He’s got a LOT of DVDs and books and we still haven’t moved everything in yet. It’s a process. But progress is being made.

So here’s something those of you who have never been in a relationship with someone who does shift work have thought of – meal planning, how? Consider… I work days and so eat my final meal of the day around 6pm. He works nights and so eats his final meal of the day around 10am. I hate cooking for myself and I don’t want him to have to cook for himself.

My new criteria for “dinners” are that they make enough for both of us to have at least one meal, preferably two, are considered at least a little healthy, and that they reheat well. I am not finding this as easy as I had hoped I would. Enter the Crock Pot.

Some of you may know this culinary wizard as a slow cooker, same thing. And it is my new best friend. Right now I have a batch of meatballs cooking that I will later throw over mashed potatoes. These are frozen meatballs taking a bath in beef broth, cream of mushroom soup, and Lipton’s beefy mushroom soup mix. I have high hopes for this.

out da window

Needless to say, some things just aren’t improving much. It’s getting scarier to go to the store, and even when you do go, they don’t have all of the stuff you’d like to get. Like bread. Or toilet paper.

Seriously, what the actual fuck is up with the toilet paper thing???

But I digress. I’m still trying to get my shit sorted out, both personal and professional. Work is still taking place at home and it sounds like we’re about to the point where we’ll be shutting the campus down officially and entirely for awhile. Suits me just fine. I’m getting used to working in leggings and tennis shoes. Plus, I have a seriously hunky new co-worker.

Lancelot is moving in. Wait, no, that’s not quite right. L has basically moved in. We don’t have all of his stuff here just yet but we’ve started working on that, slowly. He’ll be totally moved in by the end of May.

This is happening faster than we anticipated but we’re both very excited about it. The dog is particularly excited.

Anyway, it’s something good that’s happening but it is change. So much change lately, seriously. Yesterday I had my therapy appointment over something very much like Zoom. It was weird though still fairly effective. Totally better than no therapy at all.

So I’m still working on figuring out what I want my world to look like, but that’s ok. I’m happy and that’s all that matters.

what damn day is it anyway?

Yes, I’ve only been working at home for 8 days, but for fuck sake I have no damn clue what day it really is. Like, is this really Wednesday or did I skip something and it’s really Thursday?

Anyway, I’ve decided that this working from home shit just isn’t for me. I’m glad I still have work and that it’s pretty damn safe, but it sucks. The only real upside, besides not actually having to wear a bra if I don’t feel like it, is that there are a few more opportunities to try silly things, like this…

Snapchat filters on a laptop webcam, yay!

Has anyone else dried out their hands so much that their fingertips have become obliterated? No? Just me? I’m not even kidding here. My hands are so dried out from washing all the time that I can’t unlock my phone with the fingerprint scanner. It sucks.

The good thing about today? I finally feel like I’m getting caught up. When we left our offices to start working at home I was ridiculously behind in my work because there was just so much going on. Now I’m almost 100% caught up on my “normal” tasks. Hell, at this rate I might actually get some project work done this week.

My goal for next week is to get the treadmill setup so that I can get some walking in during the day.

what is normal anymore?

I get up around 4:30am, like normal. I make a cup of coffee, like normal.

That’s pretty much where any resemblance to my old existence ends.

I might watch a little news, though honestly I don’t remember the last time I did. I might get the dishwasher emptied, though often that waits until closer to my lunch break. I shower and put on comfy clothes, something I used to only do on the weekends. I go pick up Lancelot, which is typical, except I never used to have to drive through a check point.

And then I get home and work in my basement, using two laptops instead of one with two additional monitors (so much nicer), and I don’t usually actually see another person in the flesh until dinner time.

This is not a great arrangement for me. I’m not terribly extroverted but I do enjoy the company of people, nice people anyway. I miss my friends. I miss the distraction of someone walking into my office just to shoot the shit for a few minutes. I miss being able to share my happys and sads with them. Fuck, I miss having a reason to wear nice clothes and put on makeup.

I’m glad that I’m safe (so far) and that no one I love has gotten ill, please don’t get me wrong. But I’m going to have to figure out what I need to do to keep from going completely bat-crap crazy. Suggestions are welcome.

my coworkers are jerks

Garth is turning into quite the little micro-manager. I still love him though.

So things are getting interesting around here. In the “petty nonsense” category I spent the better part of my team meeting this morning prying my solar nails off with the file attachment on a pocket knife. I also have no fingerprints left, thank you obsessive hand washing. And right now I can’t really do the work I need to be doing because the system I need to access has pretty well tanked. Thank you global pandemic.

Saturday Lancelot and I stayed at my house and watched the entire first season of The Mandalorian. I had watched most of it so I let him get caught up and then we watched the last two episodes together. I can’t wait for the next season.

Being here meant he got to spend time with Dog Blossom. He loves that pup, and she loves him. I do not necessarily love sharing the bed with him, and the dog, and both cats. That’s a lot of creatures in one queen sized bed. But it was a good weekend.

This is week two of working from home for me. I still don’t love it, but I’m managing. I have been tracking my weight, just to make sure I’m not putting any excess on. I think I’m going to see if Mom will help me get the treadmill setup so that I can walk in the mornings before work. A little more activity will be good for me.

I honestly can’t remember if I’ve mentioned this or not but I’ve been taking a picture of myself, or having L take one, every day since my birthday. I’ve been referring to it as “Day # of Being 44” and I post it on Facebook. I honestly don’t give a shit what anyone else thinks, or if they bother to think anything at all, I’m doing this for myself. This year is going to be odd, to say the least. My birthday happened in the middle of a fucking pandemic. So yeah, things will change. Plus, there is personal change coming. Knowing all of that I want to document what the change does to the outside of me.

Will I smile less at the start and then more when I’m closer to 45? Will I ever wear makeup again? Will I keep my hair this short? I don’t know any of these answers any more than y’all do, and I’m curious. Besides, it’s a minor distraction from the chaos that we are literally surrounded by right now.