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spindlewand [userpic]


November 30th, 2014 (11:57 pm)

Won NaNo. 

spindlewand [userpic]

Especially for a flat fish

August 3rd, 2014 (11:20 am)

Warning - pic heavy.  I have not been arsed to figure out, on my aging computer with four options for sizing pictures three of which I cannot understand and one of which I don't know how to get this photo into,how  to resize them,  so they will take 1000 years to load, sorry.  to add insult to injury, I can't figure out how to even hide them under a cut.  Total fail for the rest of you, but I hope F enjoys them.

[These are pictures]

These are pictures i can't figure out where else I can post for a friend to see them.  (Don't get me started with my problems with Photobucket, or Earthlink, probably Earthlink but maybe just *flails.*)

So the rest of you may find them interesting, or may find them boring, or may just find them puzzling - I just warn that they may not fascinate.

First, for laughs, a picture of the local Castle to which we hiked when I was at camp.Castle 4 Flounder

A picture from the Top of Bear Mountain, New York.  It is possibly almost as good as the ones you could easily find online by searching on "Bear Mountain, New York" images, but those were not taken by me...  On the right day, at the right angle (which this is not,) you can see the Manhattan Skyline from here.

(Top of Bear Mountain 4 Flounder

Hard to believe these green, forested hills were all covered in Farmland a hundred or so years ago.

spindlewand [userpic]

Happy Thanksgiving

November 28th, 2013 (09:16 am)

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

spindlewand [userpic]

Ah, yes, Connecticut

December 16th, 2012 (12:16 am)

What is there to say.  Little children.  Little tiny children.  Little tiny snotty-nosed cute children.

It beggars the imagination. 

I would love to say something brilliant here that would somehow stop all such things in the future, but there is no such thing.

spindlewand [userpic]

The nice report...

August 10th, 2012 (04:16 pm)

So this week in the nice report:

I had a good ending with the Alphasmart Dana.  I called them. Some MAGNIFICENT Customer Service/Tech rep spent over an hour with me finding that yes, I was correct, the software was not there to be downloaded, making a special doo-hickey for that to happen, waiting while my netbook did a number of things neither of us could fathom, ending up with the software downloading, installing itself and forgetting to tell us it had done that, my hot-syncing, my not finding the file, my then finding the file...  I asked to speak to her supervisor because I figured with all the time she spent on one call she might get in trouble.  I waxed eloquent about how marvelous the level of service was, how I love the company, how I am always plugging them, and their customer service, and how this was exemplary and totally justified my AlphaSmart passion...  Cause, you know, they hear the complainers all day, and this gal was magnificent.  And did not keep repeating my name. 

Then, I had a brainstorm and realized how to cut and paste to a new file so I could transfer the files... 

Oh, and  I now know what size card I need to use.

Win, Win, Win.

As I mentioned in my panic!post, I got a shipment of used Alpha Smart 3000's in the mail.  If the House Elf wants one, there is now one for him, plus if anyone wants one for NaNo I can part with them at a pittance and not lose money.  These are much simpler than the Dana and there is basically nothing that can go wrong - when these files fill up, they refuse to take more, and you get a message that says change to another file.  So I am feeling all useful.  Even though quite possibly I will never meet anyone who wants one.  If I do, I am ready to help them.  I do love these things.

The rain has passed and it is a beautiful day.

Spottedcat has summer. Or had it, if it was one of those one day events...

I made an interesting discovery about 18th century portraits that affects my research.

Oh.  The Origific. I think...I think it's salable.  Time will tell...  I am sort of Nano-ing it this month...

Your niceness below, please...

spindlewand [userpic]

Dana arrives...

March 26th, 2012 (06:32 pm)

It's here!  It's here!  I are so excited....

spindlewand [userpic]

Proof of the power of Prayer and getting better as you age...

February 2nd, 2012 (12:37 pm)

(Dear flist - this may be long and boring, but it is really important to me and I hope some of you actually read it all the way to the end...it should, at least, have amusing parts...)

I may have mentioned casually somewhere along the line that I am not particularly athletic.  I should clarify.  I am not particularly athletic the way Neville Longbottom was not particularly adept at Snape's potions classes.

While I never managed to actually melt a pair of sneakers just by standing around in them, I did manage to get lost in the water in the  pool and had to be retrieved from where I got lost to.  I managed to fail the President's fitness test in Junior High School.  (You did  not know it was possible to FAIL that?  Evidently it was...) They put me in remedial gym with about 5 other kids, all of whom had some legitimate disability of some sort.  (They had to take me out of remedial gym because it conflicted with advanced French, so I wasn't there long.)

Once I got to High School I could PICK, within reason, what I wanted for gym.  So I took weight lifting, and recreational games, (crab soccer, anyone?) and dance, and orienteering, and one semester when no better choice presented itself, golf.  This did not get me off scott free from basketball, softball and, the worst, taught by a teacher who insisted we follow the very latest international women's volleyball association rules, Volleyball.  And I hated, with a burning, driving passion which I cannot begin to describe, any competitive game.  I never understood the rules.  No one ever taught me any of the skills.  People would yell at me what to do with the ball and I never understood what they meant.If the ball came anywhere near me, it hit me in the face.  I sucked at every last bit of it, it was humiliating, I wanted to die, and that was pretty much that.  Throw in that I hate getting my face sweaty and changing clothes in front of strangers and you've got the whole gorgeous enchilada of my-life-in-gym. 

Thus, when the note came home in the bookbag for Mommy basketball at the kid's school, I knew it was the perfect opportunity.  It would be hard.  It would be miserable.  I would hate it.  And if I did it, I could then forevermore point to this and say "House Elf, remember when Mommy did the basketball, and it was hard, and she stunk at it, but she kept on trying because it was a good thing to do and eventually she stunk a little less at it?" at points where he needed to work hard at something he didn't enjoy.  That, and I thought it might be some sort of bonding experience for him to be able to laugh at me.  I signed up.

Ben Franklin said to beware any enterprise that required new clothing.  This bizarre effort of mine started with my having to ASK my knit buddies what people wear to play basketball.  I must have looked achingly pathetic, because one of them decided immediately that she needed to upgrade her yoga pants wardrobe and could I possibly use a pair she was "getting rid of anyway."  She even delivered them to my door late Tuesday night.

Wednesday it occurred to me that the last time I bought sports shoes of any description was back in the 90's.  Not that I have exactly worn them out, but I had no idea where they might be, and I didn't even have a pair of skippies to my name.  Nor did I have a nice big T-shirt to wear over all this.  So we went to the Dollar store and 35 dollars later we came out with t-shirts, underpants for my kid, a set of long johns that should work for pj's for me, leggings, a nice pair of athletic socks with the American Flag on them, two lipsticks and a crystal bracelet featuring red aurora borealis globes, so I could channel my inner Gryffindor.  I mean, despite the cauldrons, Neville does eventually get the snake, so maybe...

I went to Payless Shoes for something to put on my feet.  Athletic shoes are ugly.  They are unremittingly ugly at normal female sizes, and I have the feet of a drag queen.  However, there was one pair with bright blue soles, which looked somehow like large little kid sneakers, so I got them. For the egregious sum of 35 dollars.  And because it was BoGo, I got a second pair of shoes, five inch high Come-F#ck-Me pumps, in a color to match the two dresses I got back in October, just to remind myself that I am still me, even if I do have new athletic shoes.  ( I wasn't always old and fat and ugly and the legs are holding up better than the rest of me...)

Begging God and all the saints to help me, I walked into the gym still chewing on my dinner, because of course there was not time to eat it at home, and had the first failure - seltzer I bought refusing to open without spraying all over.

And that was the last true failure of the night.

I mean, no, I could not do a single sit-up.  And yes, I did fall over at one point when I missed a ball that was passed to me.  And true, the only people in the room who might have been worse than me were people with foreign accents who had probably never touched a basketball before in their lives.  But I really was not that bad.  I was a lot better than I was the last time I tried doing any of this in HS.  I dribbled the ball.  She who had amused 20 years of HS students by saying "I am not telling you I know everything.  I can't even dribble a basketball.  But I am better at what I teach than you are..." and fielding incredulity every single time dribbled the ball down to the end of the gym and back.  Did it slow, did it faster, did it with her non-dominant hand, did it from one hand to the other. 


And when we got to practice how to shoot baskets after a brief explanation ( I do not recall anyone in gym ever telling me HOW to shoot one - just Go Do It.  Sylvia B, and the rest of you, you probably TRIED, but I could not possibly hear...)  I got three baskets!!!!

And two were nothing but net!!!!

And One was on my first try!

Now this was not on the regulation hoop.  It was maybe  a foot lower.  But it was not a LOW hoop, not down near my head or anything.  AND I GOT THE BALL THROUGH THE HOOP!

Can y'all say "And Hermione Granger has Scored with the Quaffle!" in Lee Jordan's voice???

No one laughed at me.  No one laughed at anyone.  We all just had a good time.  And when I had to try to get a point for my team at the very end of class and the best I could do was four attempts that hit the rim or the backboard (At regulation height this time) I still got a high five and I was not the least bit humiliated.

My six year old was wildly disappointed that he won't be able to teach me to dribble, but I pointed out that I still don' know how to do it while someone is trying to take the ball away from me, and he was ok with that.  And the silly shoes, on the way home, well, I can't tell for sure, but they might be glow in the dark... how fun is that?

Maybe there is something to be said for desperate prayer and for getting better at things as you get older after all...

spindlewand [userpic]

So very nice...

January 15th, 2012 (12:10 am)

I've actually had a number of really nice things happen lately...

Last week, when I had to show up to a militia function with a rag wrapped around my head like a brain surgery patient, everyone was nice enough not to notice unless I mentioned it, and then they said it was fine. 

And when I was absently commenting on my family, a Raveler posted to ask about them and I exchanged a pm or two with her,

Which then led me to go look on Ancestry for my grandfather when he was in Australia, and, finding some mentions of a name like his asked in the Genealogy group there if some kind soul with the correct kind of subscription would look and see if any of them were him.  Two people did, and one found him!

And it is for a record which might yield more info about his father!

AND it yielded the correct name of his ship, which then led to being able to find it in all sorts of newspapers, including some very interesting tidbits about a storm it was caught in, I think when he was on it, which ripped the masts off, washed everything on deck overboard, and swamped the cabins.  And this obviously gives me an intriguing set of details about the life of a very very beloved grandfather who died rather young and way way before we were done with him, and who we all miss to this day, and this day is a good 45 years later.

Then, there is Braveheart.  Braveheart has been moving his lips more - he seems to be ABLE to move them a bit more.  And his other muscles seem to be working a tiny bit better, too.  We are even getting more verbal language!!!

My mom took him and me to the movies today to see The War Horse, which she had previously read to him.  The movie was wonderful.

Even better, he was really engaged during the vast majority of it. 

He expressed opinions about it in response to questions.


Then we ran into a friend of my mother's who made Braveheart a sweater when he was a baby.  This woman has a daughter who was about ten at that time, and about whom I have heard bits from time   Well, I was introduced to the Friend, who I probably met once before on some occasion I do not recall, but also, for the first time, the daughter, now a grown woman, and I was chatting with her while our mothers were talking.  I'm not quite sure how it happened, but she asked me if I knew what fanfic was.!

I raised my hand and said, "Harry Potter."  Which resulted in a discussion about fan fic, fan fic friends, her Frasier Fics, friends you make over the internet, her job, her degree, My life, my degree, etc, etc, etc... 

And then, it turns out that not only does her mother knit, her mother also researches genealogy.

And they live a few blocks from my mother. 

I have, seriously, made a new friend.  And it was a WONDERFUL feeling.

And as if all this were not enough, Braveheart was trying to be in both conversations, which is much more confident and outgoing than he usually is, and trying to use his communication board, which we are often struggling to get him to use...

And mom and I bought pashminas together, which was fun...

Oh, and now Dan is on SNL as the guest host.

And the duvet cover I bought at Ikea has passed muster as close enough to make an 18th century gown with...

And I got us another pewter mug to reenact with, and this one actually is made from pewter   and it was only one dollar.  (They both have glass bottoms, which they should not, but you can't have everything.)

Your niceness below, please...

spindlewand [userpic]

I con Meme

January 3rd, 2012 (10:01 pm)

um... See mah icon?

That's mah icon.


spindlewand [userpic]

A very lovely present...

December 26th, 2011 (02:02 am)

One of the nicest Christmas presents I've received this year, and certainly the most unexpected, is that my story Chestnuts was recorded for the audiofictions. 

It was a tremendous pleasure to hear it read in a man's voice, and one who managed an in-character Severus as well as a very creditable Harry. This story was nominated to be read years ago, but I know Carole had something to do with it being done now.  Thank you, Carole, from the bottom of my squiggly little heart.

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