Wednesday, March 31, 2010

My Perfectly Imperfect Brother

Once upon a time, there was a ten year old girl who had a brother and a sister and was the apple of her daddy's eye. One day her mom came home with a baby boy. The baby boy was not like most babies. He cried with a dull, low moan. He didn't move his legs or arms very well by himself. He didn't sleep at night. The girl helped pat his back when he couldn't sleep. She moved his arms and his legs for him, and pretended he was a sprinter, leaping over obstacles. She liked doing that because he laughed and smiled.

One day her mom and dad came home from the doctor. They told her that he may never walk or talk. They told her that the baby didn't feel things like other people felt them. Something that she thought was soft might feel rough to him. They told her that he might not see things the same way she saw things. This was very interesting to her, and so she tried and tried to see things the way that he would see them. She tried watching TV upside down and sideways, because maybe that was how he saw it. She wondered if the soft blanket hurt his hands, and if the food that she thought tasted good tasted bad to him.

She prayed that he could walk and talk every night. When he was three years old, he finally started to walk. When he was four, he got pink eye. She stayed all night with him at the hospital by his side, hoping he would get better. Her father put his hands on the little boy's head and asked Heavenly Father to help him get well, and he did.

She wanted to help him learn how to pedal a tricycle, so she taped his feet to the pedals to help him learn how to push on them with his legs. She wanted him to try, because she believed he could. If he wasn't supposed to walk and could, then he could do more. Slowly, he started to talk, and then he never stopped talking.

One day when he was five years old, she was tired and resting on the couch. Her little brother kept calling her name, but she ignored him because she was so tired. He walked up to her and placed his hand on her head, "Heav'nly Father, bless her. She sick. In name of Jesus Christ Amen." She felt so much love that she cried. She felt like she was in the presence of an angel.

As one who has an angel brother, I have been blessed in so many ways, but it has certainly been a journey of growth and understanding. The other day, C found this on his motorcycle forum. It isn't the type of thing you would THINK would be on a motorcycle forum. This is where to start:

Next, go here to see the rest of the story. Welcome, Nella, to this beautiful world where you will be the one perfecting others.

Ambulance at the Chiropractor's Office

Today while driving home, I saw an ambulance parked in front of the chiropractor's office. I didn't quite see who, but the driver was just shutting the doors, and then walked around to get in the driver's seat, lights-a-flashing. As one who winces at the thought of visiting a chiropractor, I mused a bit to myself, thinking about the menagerie of stories that could have evolved from that singular event, and determined that I MUST include that in a book someday. After all, real life makes the very best stories.

So, here is my question for you:
Did the ambulance show up because:
A. The doc tweaked so hard on someone that they could not stand or walk afterward
B. While watching the doc tweak someone's spine, an onlooker passed out
C. A person with a previously fractured bone showed up and SNAP!
D. Other (fill in the blank)

You see, none of these sound even remotely positive, and still I count myself fortunate that I have never visited, and hopefully will never visit, a chiropractor. If I only had a bit more time on my hands, I would peruse the ensuing court cases over the next several months to determine exactly: what was the story behind that ambulance at the Chiropractor's office?

Very sadly, I did not capture the epic moment on my iPhone because I finally got a clear shot at this lovely old home, just for you:

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Stir Crazy

Well, I have now been in the house for almost four days solid. That makes a person a wee bit stir crazy. While my availability to Kawi has increased his appreciation for me considerably, I am getting a little sick of being sick. Today I had the opportunity to present some of the Marketing Messages that I have been researching to three directors in the department, but even after trying to sleep off my horrible night last night, I could scarcely walk around the house.

My doc called in a new Rx for me and I sat in bed trying to figure out how I was going to pick it up. I don't know if it's one of those things where you can just ring up a neighbor and say, "Yo, could you go pick up my Rx for me?" No, I don't think so.

I finally mustered up the "stomach" to get out of bed at 1:00 PM, still having had nothing to eat, and trying to think of anything that sounded appetizing with no success. As I pulled up to the drive-thru at the pharmacy, Kawi belted out a lovely serenade for the pharmacy assistant; charming little guy. I then pulled over in the parking lot and tried to decide what sounded good to eat. Hmmm... Olive Garden Calamari! That crashed and burned when I saw the calories rang in at over 1000. That's like a day's worth of food, and yes, I could eat the whole thing without a second thought!

Next, I considered Winger's Wings. At 328 cals for four wings, that was reasonable, especially considering my calorie count was currently zero. Yum! and then Yuck. That didn't sound so good anymore. Drats. (I did find a recipe for the sauce, but I am going to try to tweak it and then I will let you know a healthier version.)

Suddenly I thought about making a roast and buying the Sherlock Holmes movie. I did leave the store with a lean roast, but my wallet wouldn't let go of the seventeen dollars for the movie. It growled and said, "C won't like it!"

Resigned, I put the movie back.

Kawi pooped on my seat the moment he saw me coming out of the store. It's a thing he does to, I don't know, drop ballast so that he can jump to your shoulder the moment you are in range? Fortunately cockatiel poops leave no mark 99% of the time, so it's an easy fix. "Excited to see me?" I asked while I picked up his little love package.

"Slurp, slurp, take a drink?" He asked.

"Okay, let's get you home to get a drink." On the way, I stopped for a container of mashed potatoes at a smokehouse. It was the only thing that sounded even remotely edible. I ate about 1/2 cup of mashers and felt full. Isn't that a sad thing? Suddenly I heard a muffled cry coming from the fridge. It was the strawberries - or the Ghiradelli bittersweet 60% cocoa chips, I wasn't really sure, so I let them both out.

For some time, I have had a theory, and it goes like this: If you can make something with a milk product that is fatty, you can probably make that same thing without the fat! I have this little weakness for Ganache. I am not supposed to eat chocolate, and I don't eat it very often. It's one of those highly limited foods along with sugar, generally. The problem with Ganache is that it is made by pouring boiling hot cream over chocolate pieces, thus the problem of both plenty of sugar AND plenty of fat AND plenty of flavor.

For those of you who may not know, Ganache is that lovely creamy stuff that truffles are made of. You let it cool into a semi-solid form, roll it in balls, and then coat it in some other item, like cocoa powder or a waxy chocolate that won't melt at room temperature. You then put them in the freezer to harden the chocolate. The fridge will cause a waxy finish sometimes if they are cooled slowly, so put them in the freezer to cool the chocolate for a several minutes first. This is also the lovely stuff used to cover fine pastries with a creamy, smooth chocolate coating that literally melts in your hands.

Here is my GREAT DISCOVERY FOR THE DAY!!!! You can make Ganache by using fat free half-and-half! How exciting is that? So of course I made chocolate covered strawberries, and a few macadamians and cashews. Normally it looks more smooth than that, but I wasn't in a Julia Child mood. Don't you feel so bad for me staying home sick?

Well, C, sorry I didn't use milk chocolate, but bittersweet is just SO!!!! Now if only I felt like eating them, too!

At least my bed still has an appetite. My bed eats pillows. I kept wondering where they were going, and why I couldn't stay propped up, considering we have eight full-sized pillows on our bed. And then I found him! The evil bed crack has been gobbling them up!
Alas, I found a solution! This enormous down neck roll pillow has been moping around the house since arriving from the Ikea discount corner for almost a year. This week it has finally filled the measure of its creation!

Sunday, March 28, 2010


I have been fighting a little bug over the past couple of weeks. I was finishing a deadline-critical project that involved some field-work, and so Thursday I pulled up my bootstraps and got ready to go. For extra measure, to make sure I was in the best possible condition for this important field-work which involved interviewing some individuals, I rummaged through my medicine drawer and pulled out a bottle of orange liquid. Whew! I actually had some of the daytime Tylenol Cold medicine! I swigged straight out of the bottle until I felt I'd had enough, and set the bottle down. At that point I noticed the tiny "Nitetime" logo on the label. "No, no, no, no, no!" I cried out.

I had a drive ahead of me, and figured if I could head out early enough, I might be able to beat the ensuing fatigue. I managed to get to the destination point without falling asleep at the wheel, and there met my colleague. We were given an office in which to conduct our business, and started to prepare for these important interviews while my head spun into a cobweb of cloudiness. My colleague had a conference call he needed to be on before we started the interviews, and so he suggested I take a brief doze to recover.

I sat in a chair and rested my head against the wall just long enough to doze off, at which moment a co-worker called my mobile phone to give me some information I had requested the previous day. I ate a handful of almonds and a fruit bar which seemed to help me work off the initial fog of the medication, and I was bright and ready to go by the time we were ready to interview. I managed to drag through Friday as well, but finally went to the doctor for antibiotics that afternoon.

Yesterday I spent recovering at home minus a trip to the store to buy some real daytime cold medicine. In an attempt to help me feel better, C suggested we go out for some ice cream. I suggested we just run to the local grocery store to pick up some dots and some lemon juice. We packed up in the car and I sat in the parking lot in my PJs, waiting for C to return with my beloved ice cream dots; you know, the ones you get at amusement parks? The tiny spheres of frozen ice cream that have a delightfully entertaining texture?

Apparently lemon juice is not an easy find for men. I, thinking he would return in five minutes, sat waiting...and waiting...and waiting. At last I thought, well, I could clean out the glove box, but then remembered that I already did that recently. Ah, there is the console box! I removed stray pieces of silverware, a large stack of receipts, plugged in the GPS to charge it, removed an empty migraine medication box, and a few other "Oh, that's where I left that!" items. Finally joining the tidy club with the glove box, C was still not back. Several minutes later, he emerged with a single sack in his hand, and placed the bag in the backseat. He opened the driver's door and handed me a large box... of DOTS!

I'd like to say this was the end, but just I stared at it and laughed. "Oh, I meant ice cream dots!" Without a moment's hesitation or a prickly glance, and before I could get the words out of my mouth ("But don't worry about it, honey!) He was off, and this time he really did come back in about five minutes while I mused over the fact that I have never, in ten years of marriage, purchased a box of Dots. We had a good laugh over that one. And that is the kind of man, as Dr. Laura would put it, that would swim through shark-infested waters to bring me a lemonade. What a trouper!

Apparently, while I was writing this, Kawi decided to create his own version of dots using the cork in the bottom of my nightstand coaster. While I appreciate his attempts at artistic freedom, in lieu of an image of an Avian Van Gogh, I am left to think, Tiny Puppy with wings.

But do check out my Scratch Chicken Noodle and Kabobs (vegetarian alternates are possible, I suppose, plus there is a great post on just veggies.)

And do tell, have YOU ever had Dots (C's interpretation) or Dots (A's interpretation)?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


On Monday, C noticed my C++ Algorithms book open on the table. He read a paragraph out loud while I walked into another room. "What is your favorite book out of the Old Testament?" He called out from the kitchen.

I replied that I liked Ezekiel quite a bit, but of course I really loved Isaiah. "Come here, I want to show you something." He replied. He then proceeded to read a sentence out of my Algorithm book, and then a verse out of Isaiah, and then a sentence out of my Algorithm book, and another verse out of Isaiah. He paused and looked at me. With one hand he waved over both books, "It means the same to me... and this is what you like."

I am afraid that my blogging has taken a backseat to my schoolwork. It's times like these when I am grateful that I don't belong to Facebook, yet another distraction, and yet, a virtual mailbox to find friends from the past! If I wasn't trying to dodge divorced boyfriends from the past, I guess it wouldn't be such a big deal.

Last night we kept Kawi up late since I have the day off today. You know it is a little too late when he willingly goes right up to his perch without begging, without anger beads, without showing off his wings so you will take him out again. Pooped. Tired. It sounds strange to say you are letting your bird sleep in, I know, but he is. They get sick and stressed easily without 10-12 hours, and let me tell you, the last thing you want is a runny bird on your shoulder. EWE!

I started a new book. I have so many yet to finish, but that is how I write. I am not a highly structured writer. I write because I love to write, and I love what I write and I have no expectations that everyone else will love what I write.

A few years ago, my brother decided to become a writer. He studied all of these books and decided he would become a best selling author. I have written since I was age nine, and wrote adventure books, poems, songs, whatever. My brother, on the other hand, was not a writer. He spent hours drawing ships on scraps of paper, and then folded them, and used a pencil to determine if it was a hit - sort of a paper version of Battleship. It was times like those I wondered if he had a full deck. Of course he does, and he turned out great, but it was just one of those childish musings, "Does he really find that engaging?"

I was the kid fishing for salamanders and frogs in the cistern, or discovering the hidden trap doors beneath the pantry leading to a black widow infested root cellar, or taking apart an old radio so I could play with the mercury (true story), or hiding treasure maps in the ceiling panels, or burying treasures in discretely marked graves, or scraping on the side of the wooden bunk bed late at night, and then tossing a pair of socks down on my sister to make her think it was a mouse (because she got so worked up!), or catching field mice, snakes, lizards, or squirrels and bringing them into the house to play with, or sitting on the deacon's chest at night dreaming up stories in the bright summer moonlight, or looking into the green saucer-like eyes of my cat through the windowpane at night, and wondering what made her eyes do that, or running down the dirt road in my broken heeled boots, thrilled that I sounded like a horse. Whew! Talk about a run-on sentence!

I rarely did the same thing twice as a kid, and I rarely sat in front of the TV set. I was never bored. I created chemical concoctions, found a hundred different art projects to do by myself without any outside motivation or assistance, and wrote and drew pictures of roses and horses and unicorns just because I wanted to. I stood in awe at the things my siblings would do - not out of cruelty or spite, but out of curiosity. Will my brother really let me crack three eggs on his head if I tell him he may crack one on mine? I was so impressed with the outcome. I did nothing out of maliciousness, but everything out of a quest for more knowledge and understanding. Do you think less of me now?

Well, I really have taken too much time. Algorithms are calling my name. Have a splendid day, and please feel free to tell me, what did you love to do as a child, and do you see a connection between what you love to do today? I promise I will finish the privacy questions soon. I just keep getting sidetracked, and maybe I will share a little bit of writing with you later!

Friday, March 19, 2010


This is how our little bird and C take naps together after church, only sometimes Kawi snuggles right up next to C's neck. He has to be pretty tired to tuck his little head under his wing like this, which is why I love this pic.

I worked out of both offices today. I had two meetings at nigh and three meetings at nether. During my nether meetings I was notified that I have been promoted! I know, you would think that I would be excited about the raise, but I must admit, I was really quite excited about the increased amount of vacation time I get. I now earn more than five and a half hours of leave per pay period. Also, my manager asked me to coordinate an important upcoming event (I am a workaholic, c'mon, I eat this stuff up!) and asked me to be the team presenter at the next major national conference. Kind of cool in a hollow, yet meaningful sort of way. Hollow because there are certainly more important things than national conferences, and meaningful because it always is nice to be in a position of trust.

Tomorrow I have a presentation at a training center for work, but lucky me, that means I get a day off next week. A little time on a Saturday for a day off? I am in. But seriously, I volunteered before I knew I could get a day off. Did I mention that I'm a workaholic?

Interesting translation on the Yiddish document. Apparently the Goim (Hebrew word for non-Jews) would feed the Jews who were hiding in the forest, and then chase them away. I left off when he arrived in a city, but I am still working on the location of that city. Hebrew and Yiddish contain no vowels, which means that you must have a pretty good imagination when it comes to interpreting. Good stuff. Unfortunately, I tend to be more valued for my technical skills nowadays than some of my other abilities, so I really appreciate a little opportunity now and then to sink my teeth into some language activities.

Yesterday I worked on a marketing message story for our upcoming major event. My mentor, a former VP at Novell, told me that I absolutely nailed it on my first attempt, and I don't think I have EVER heard those words from him. That was exciting. One of the major errors people make in creating anything in a work environment is becoming emotionally attached to what they create. This often blinds them from receiving the needed feedback and making changes to improve whatever they created. It happens with everyone. It's no different than a child who imprints on a blanky or a stuffed animal. The creation suddenly has an emotional aura to it.

I have worked hard to avoid imprinting, so I always go into a situation expecting to make changes, but three of the major players all took this story as-is. As for the tag lines, I will be doing some work on those this upcoming week. I learned the process for getting a tag-line from my mentors. It is the same process used to determine the name of a major drug by pharmaceutical companies. I always love doing field work as opposed to just sitting at a desk. There is so much more energy when working with people and learning to embrace a new perspective.

Sorry to bog you down with all of this work info, but here is more. I have been working on a few affiliate relationships for the past couple of years. Unfortunately, there is a lot of red tape that often slows down the process, so often things move so slow that these partners bow out because they don't see any progress being made. Well, one of these affiliates, a business associate of three years, finally took the first step today.

I was a bit protective over this first meeting, perhaps because this associate has had some bad experiences with trying to create partnerships in the past. I wanted him to know we are serious and interested in a partnership, and so while my superiors suggested adding other more aggressive individuals in this meeting, I pushed back hard. The meeting went quite well, I believe, and I am pleased to see things moving forward after such a long wait. Partnerships are such a critical part of the worldwide economy today, that you can never underestimate them if they are created correctly.

And there you are, more than an earful about my work, more than you ever hoped for!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

I think I have...

Unusually LONG toes. I even had someone tell me so. I could write with my toes. I think I actually have written with my toes, only that was a long time ago. C bought me finger toe socks for Christmas, and while I can't wear them with my Vibrams, they sure keep my toes warm.

On the way home from work I stopped at the store for some whole wheat lasagna noodles, and there in a discount cart was a Heather plant. I know! Doesn't that just make you think, Bonsai tree??? Okay, maybe not, but this is how my mind works. Heather is a woody plant, and it has some lovely lines, even if it is a vertical-looking plant. $3.49 for a Bonsai tree!!!

I arrived home, tossed together a lasagna (I never cook the noodles - just throw it together and cook it for an hour and it saves so much pain and agony!) and while it cooked, I took my prize Heather plant out on the porch. It was a lovely day, so I sat with a pair of scissors and an artist's eye and scrutinized this little tree into a work of art. I am training some of the branches to change directions, so it isn't finished yet, but this is pure pleasure for me. I love plants, and training this lovely little ordinary creation into something extraordinary? Well, it's not unlike teaching Kawi a new song.

Today I read more of the Yiddish document. I am almost finished with the third page now, even though I really should be working on other things. It is my treat. I work on "exciting" things like conference presentations or marketing or such, and then I escape into the mind of a German Jew and try to decipher his phonetics while unraveling his story.

I must give a happy little shout-out for Nat The Fat Rat, who after some courageous bouts with Clomid, has successfully conceived a Holbs-Lovin'-Fat-Rat! Congrats Nat! I knew you could do it! What a fabulous announcement for St. Patrick's Day! Oh, and in case you didn't get your fair share of wonderful bliss on the day of greenness, please check out Cake Wreck's St. Patrick's Day entry, Patty Cakes, plus the lovely Shamrock, er Clover entry for a good Irish chuckle.

Okay, but really, I AM Irish! - well, I am sort of German-Jewish-Catholic-Irish-Scandinavianish-Scottish-English-Mormonish. And how's that for an identity crisis?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

I SHOULD Feel So...

The house is clean. Let me try that again: The House is Clean!
Dusted, vacuumed, laundried, swept, scrubbed, tidied. The taxes are done. My conference presentation is ALMOST done. I fit in a workout. The fridge is full. I just ate a whole can of green beans with Provincial Herbs. I had my hair done last Saturday. Kawi was a perfect angel for me today and didn't bite me once. I had lunch with my good friend yesterday. I had a great date with C last night. I should feel so accomplished, so refreshed, but somehow, there is still so much to do, and so little time.
My boss kindly offered to let me work permanently out of the nigh office. This means for me, approximately eight more hours per week in which to study or just enjoy life in general. I have a great view. I took my camera to work with me and caught this little rainbow-piece. I know they say that rainbows just happen in your own mind and eye, but then, how do cameras get them?

It is so bright in the mornings when I come in, that I wear sunglasses for the first little while. I know, I could shut the blinds, but why would I want to do that with a view like this?
On snowy days, there's no need for sunglasses:
On the particular recent snowy day (shown above) we had so much snow that the boughs on our pine trees touched the ground.

And when I tried to pull out of the driveway, the branches were so low that I barely fit beneath them.

Everything was covered with fresh white snow, and everything looked new and different.

C is at the Capitol tonight.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Recursive Geschichte

Today when I left work I thought my head would explode. A few days ago I was given a Yiddish document to translate. Today I had a few minutes to review the four page document and realized it was a phonetic variation of Yiddish, and was truly a German record phoneticized into the Hebrew alphabet. Lest I bore you with driveling minutia, the contents of the document were the spectacular and heart-wrenching life events of a Holocaust survivor.

The difficulty of interpreting his phonetic letter combinations aside, the greatest challenge was the painful message those words carried. He told of his wife and two children going to visit his parents, and how he never saw them again because they were taken to Auschwitz and murdered. He tells of being hunted like an animal while hiding in the canal system, and how he and one other man managed to escape. I am not finished with the translation yet, but how powerful to unlock the words of this survivor to his family, masked in a pseudo-Yiddish.

Upon arriving home I thought I would take a few minutes to unravel my thoughts before attempting to dive into C++ Algorithms. Instead I just kept thinking about how this man's story replays somewhere in the world every day where heartless humans are driven by the belief that they are somehow better, somehow superior to another. It is so hard to think of the many people around the world who do not have the same freedoms we enjoy. It's so very hard when you feel so helpless to change that fact.

No workout, and no homework, but...

Last night I made dinner, did the laundry, and finished the taxes. Usually this takes me days. Let me just say how grateful I am for contributions and for itemization. I still hate tax software because I feel like it is using training wheels since I like to run the numbers three or four different ways and choose the most efficient method, but this year, I was just grateful to pound it out in one evening and to get anything back rather than owe. It is this big sigh of relief. I won't tell you how much we owed at one point (before certain deductions) because I don't want anyone dying of a heart attack. You THINK you know how bad, but no, really, this was bad.

I also ran the numbers for school and it looks like we will be able to make C's final tuition payment plus add another 18 credits for me this month, and when I start the Masters program in January, it will still be financially manageable AND I will have my entire pre-requisite coursework paid for. Woo-hoo! Well, off to work! Thanks, C, for managing the finances this year. I am pretty sure you will have an ulcer after paying simultaneously for both of our schooling this year, but just remember, the end is nigh at hand!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Inspiration for Darker Days

There is in every true woman's heart a spark of heavenly fire,which lies dormant in the broad daylight of prosperity; but which kindles up and beams and blazes in the dark hour of adversity.
-Washington Irving

Thursday, March 4, 2010


Today was my post-final-exam holiday. It is the day I take off from studying after completing a class, even though I am enrolled in another class. My recovery time is getting better with each class I complete. The first one required a two week break to get my head straight again, and I think I am down to one day. That being said, I still eagerly fingered my new book today, excited to continue with Algorithms in C++.

I think the sciences were born in my blood. My great grandfather worked his entire life on a perpetual motion machine. My grandfather completed medical coursework, and worked part time as a lab technician doing blood work at the local hospital while teaching High School science courses. My grandmother was a nurse, and I never left her house without learning something new, usually science or health related. Who knows, maybe they are all cheering me on in my great endeavors with Computer Science?

I would like to say that I handle my final exam dates gracefully, but really no more gracefully than plodding so deep into a computer program that I can't remember which way is up. Test day looks like this:

In the morning:
Grab orange flavored Trident gum, lots of pens, lots of paper, a water bottle and ten dollars for the testing center.

Leaving work:
Double check: Trident gum, lots of pens, lots of paper, a water bottle and ten dollars. Check! Stop by Chick-fil-a for carrot raisin salad, three chicken tenders, and a large diet lemonade - no ice.

Arrive at the testing center:
Wait for a parking spot to open up. Eat my chicken strips and carrot salad, and drink enough of the diet lemonade to do damage so that by the end of the three hour exam I am screaming for the bathroom. Diuretics, ya know.

Get out of the car:
Check for Trident gum, lots of pens, paper, water, and ten dollars.

In the testing center:
Pay my ten dollars, get my twenty sheets of paper stamped, run to the bathroom because the lemonade is already working its magic. I know! Why do I torment myself so? I guess it's the soothing nature of the lemon, in more than one way. :)

In the testing room:
Set up my water to the right, gum to the left, stack of pens above the test, get my phone locked up, and I am ready to go.

Chew gum like a jackhammer while I work through each problem. I swear, I don't think it is possible for me to program without orange flavored Trident. Nope. I snap that gum so loud and so hard that you'd think the mafia had just entered the building. Inevitably I throw out one or two of the pens because Murphy's law says that at least one must fail. This time two failed. No problem, I had four or five more - my favorites: G2s. What did we ever do without G2s?

Three hours later:
I emerge with a stack of 17 pages of paper covered in ink, and my right hand is
a. covered with black ink spots from the pen(s) that broke and
b. said hand is suffering from epileptic seizures from three hours of programming on paper. (Whoever came up with that idea needs to be slapped.)

The best part is that in about five weeks I get to do this all over again. Tonight was my mental vacation, however. I had a lovely run for 75 mins, and I played some puzzle game to relax my mental muscles. I also had a nice dinner with C, and we chatted about how our days went and I didn't even have to stop to study! I have to admit, I think my favorite part of the day is when C comes home from work and the gym and gives me a LOOOOOONNNNGGG hug and a kiss. It's the best.

C is studying right now, though, and is learning about income taxes and government budgets. I think we both have determined that banana chairs really are the best place to study. They are sort of like whole body fidgets. You can easily change your position from upright to reclined with the slightest movement or a foot or arm. It's like effortless sitting entertainment. Years ago we bought two banana chairs - not at the same time because banana chairs are hard to come by, and matching? Well, we didn't have the money to buy two at a time, so there was no way that was happening. One is burgundy and the other is dark green.

They were our salvation when we jammed everything we owned into bins and lived in a single bedroom for a year while working as a night couple in a retirement home. There was no way we could have fit two recliners in that room. The retirement home was one of the ways we saved money by not having to pay rent. We also managed apartments and house sat because after our first year of marriage, we decided we would not pay rent until we purchased a home.

For the record, I believe I have several more questions left to answer on this blog regarding privacy issues. I will get back to those this weekend.

For now, how great is this?

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