Thursday, January 23, 2003

The chore saga continues. Alas, the dryer still doesn't work right. My cloths came out warm but very damp. I got out my dryer manual and it suggested cleaning the lint screen with soap and water. I did that and then threw the slightly damp cloths that had been air drying all night into the dryer and they did dry. However, I'm thinking that the dryer still might not dry cloths straight from the washer. If it still doesn't dry after the next laundry I do, I'll have to call in a service person. I did get my window screen installed OK. I'm a bit concerned that it will blow out with the next big wind storm. I wasn't able to wedge it in there very securely. A new chore raised its ugly head when my TV broke. I took it to a repair shop on Monday and they replaced the power supply in it for $110.00 and now it is working fine. So the dryer is still a problem and I still need to figure out who to call to help me get a new lock for my door and to check the way the door is hung (in the summer heat it gets really hard to shoot the bolt home).

I met a woman online who was going to do the Grand Canyon hike in mid May by herself because her girlfriend didn't want to do it and neither did other friends she asked . I piped right up and said I would love to come with her. Her name is Sadie. We still need to work out the details. We would hike down the canyon one day. Stay the night in the canyon (camping) and then hike back up it the next day. I have wanted to do this hike for a long time. I really hope we can pull it off. I'll have to get started on rereading my Grand Canyon guide book. I also need to work on my conditioning more now so I can handle the long up hill hike on day 2.

I haven't been getting enough sleep again. I'm just a yawning fool this week. Although on Tuesday it was because I forgot to take my afternoon Wellbutrin. I keep staying up too late watching TV or, last night, getting the OAW paper newsletter in the snail mail to the 10 subscribers.

Linda gets back from Singapore today. It will be good to have my hiking buddy back although since she is going back to school her time may be more limited now. She has to go to her first class tomorrow. She is going to be so jet lagged I wonder if she will get anything out of the class!

I got two projects going at work now that are keeping me busy and happier. One is testing the geometry programs and fixing problems I find. The other is working on packing objects inside an object container. I managed to use the OpenCascade intersect, common, and fuse routines to determine if one shape was completely inside the other, one shape was completely outside the other, or the shapes overlapped. I was pleasantly surprised when it worked on a simple test case!

Sunday, January 19, 2003

I'm on a roll with these chores. Bob came over this morning for a hike but before we left he helped me get my laundry room folding door back in the frame. I had figured out what was wrong and how to fix it but the door was on the floor and was too heavy for me to put up myself. So I directed the door onto the right joint thingy as Bob lifted the door up. He popped in the second joint and then the last joint popped right in too. So finally I can open the door like a regular person and not have to lift it up as I shut it.

I'm doing laundry right now and this is the first test of the dryer since I replaced the vent duct and cleaned out the dryer vent. The last time I dried something it was still slightly damp when it finished because of the hole in the vent duct and the amount of lint that had built up in the vent -- or so I surmise. I also gave in to temptation when I was at OSH and bought myself one of those folding laundry racks. So now instead of having all my fleece and poly pro cloths hanging on my chairs they are on a real laundry rack and there is lots of room for everything. YAY.

The next chore is to fetch the window screen from my storage shed and see if I can put it in my bedroom window that is missing a screen. The screen is really wedged up in the top of the shed so it will take lots of shifting things around (ski racks, skis, ect.) to get the screen out. What fun. I need to go fetch my ladder to get at the stuff at the top of the shed. I might just leave my ladder in the shed instead of storing it in my bedroom closet.

The hike with Bob was nice. We went over to Coyote Hills and walked through the marsh on the board walk, checked out the indian ruins, and then took the paved path around the hills. We had a good talk about how Bob is doing with his depression. Poor Bob is going through something that I too go through at times but not nearly as much as I used to since having therapy and taking anti-depressants. We both sorta go through life thinking there is a right way to do things and stress out over figuring out what is the right thing and doing it. Just that concept of "doing the right thing" has been a nemisis of mine and it looks like Bob got it too. My guess is it came from environment and watching our Father be like that. Bob was also happy to hear from me that I supported his decision to not take anti-depressants. His wife has been pressuring him to take anti-depressants. I told him I thought he could do just fine without them as long as he felt he was making progress in therapy.

I'm listening to the football game between the Titans and the Raiders. The Raiders are ahead but not by very much. Its almost half time. The Raiders are trying to score in the last minute.

Thursday, January 16, 2003

I am now the proud owner of a pipe wrench and a sink with a working pop-up stopper! It was much easier than I anticipated getting the trap off and the old plug popped right out when I emptied the water out of the trap pipe. Putting the trap back on was a breeze. Installing the new stopper was pretty easy too.

Now I just have to find someone to help me put up my darn folding door in the laundry room door frame. Then its on to the next two chores I want to get done and have been procastinating about: replacing my door lock and fishing the screen out of my storage shed and seeing if it will go in my bedroom window (perhaps there is a reason this screen was stored in the shed by the previous owners).

I have to get my self evaluation done in a week for work: not one of my favorite jobs. Work is so fluid around here that it is hard to make specific goals and then evaluate them a year later. Often the goals have been side tracked to concentrate on new more important work that came up in the middle of the year. My manager also wants me to come up with goals to make my task more productive. Dang there are only two of us and we do the work we are asked to do quite well. Nothing pops in my mind of ways to be more productive. I'll think of something.

I had a good giggle yesterday reading the Lord of the Rings parody that Erin posted to Sappho.

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

Tra La La La La! Mom's lymph node test for cancer was negative. Mom is cancer free now!! Whew! She and Dad are driving back to Houghton today and tomorrow. I'm so relieved.

Still struggling with my pop up stopper problem. I have determined I'm going to have to take apart the pipes to get the old stopper out of the trap. I got myself a plumbers wrench last night. If I mess up this job, I'll just call in a plumber to fix things up. I don't use the sink much in the half bath downstairs so I'm in no rush to get it working. For the door problem I still have to chase someone down to help me get it set up.

Its a Stanford women's basketball week. Tomorrow night there is a game and on Saturday there is a game. Its the Washington schools. I haven't checked to see which school is on which day yet. I also need to check the time of the game on Saturday.

Sunday, January 12, 2003

My connection is not being very cooperative tonight. It has taken me forever to get to my blog. We'll see if I can get it to publish.

I got two chores done this weekend: I put my under cabinent flourescent light on my desk and I relaced the dryer vent hose and cleaned out the vent. Hopefully now my dryer will dry better. I'm already enjoying the desk light. I started two other chores and have run into problems. I tried to replace my broken sink stopper and it fell down the drain below the rod used to move it up. So now I need to find the right tool to snag the old stopper out of the pipe. The other chore was to fix my folding door on my laundry room. I think I figured out how it operates but in the process I took it all apart and the door is so heavy that I am going to need help to get it back in position. Blah.

I had a nice hike at Purisma yesterday with the Black Mountain section. The weather was cloudy but not too cold and we got to see lots of cool clouds floating in the valleys. This group set a very fast pace. I managed to keep up on the downhill and flat but on the uphill me and one other dude fell behind but not too far. It was nice to have company in the rear.

Thursday, January 09, 2003

Oops ... I messed up my customized template for this blog so I replaced it with a new one.

I heard from Cecily last night that the melanoma on my Mom's calf was around 0.5 mm deep and that there is a 95% recovery rate for those with melanomas less than 0.76 mm deep. Sounds good! Today she is getting some spots on her nose checked out and I think will be arranging or having surgery on her calf to be sure all the melanoma was removed. I tried to call her this morning and got the hotel voice mail for their room and left a message. I wonder if my parents know how to check voice mail or if they will even notice that the light on the phone means they have a message. I figured it couldn't hurt to leave a message even if they don't ever get it. All I said was I called and hoped everything was going well.

I went on a walk at Shoreline park yesterday after work. I saw a weirdly dressed woman. She had on a black hooded sweatshirt with the hood up and she had this dark but see through visor that extended all the from the top of the hood to way down to below her nose. She also was wearing black tights. I dubbed her the Darth Vador lady. With skin cancer on my mind I did wonder if perhaps she had some skin problem that requires her to protect herself that way. I also saw lots of geese on this walk. They were munching away on something in the tall grass. I also saw lots of litter. It was low tide and I decided to explore the lower trail. I was amazed by the number of plastic bottles sitting on the shore. I'm sure the bottles got in streams all over the place and made their way down to Shoreline park where at low tide they wash up on shore. Maybe on my next walk I'll bring a trash bag and pick some of them up.

I have been in a particularly geeky mood this week. I have really gotten into setting up a web page on my attbi site (no ads!) that is password protected and basically puts my bookmarks/favorites in a nice table format so I can quickly go to the places I like on the internet. I got tired of the set up I had at MyYahoo where bookmarks can only go in one column. I now want to figure out how to do a pop up menu that I can add to the page that has my less used links on it. I also found answers to a couple of nagging computer issues I had. First I finally figured out that the reason I can't access my web site at work is Attbi only lets you upload files if you are on their network and I'm not on their network when I'm at work. Second I finally figured out how to put files on a RW CD with my new external CD RW drive. I was using the wrong software to try and make the CD and finally figured that out. So after finding the right software I now have a nice CD with all my digital photos stored on it. I love it when I solve problems like this. Makes me feel good.

Tuesday, January 07, 2003

Bored? Go to this link, Eye Chart, and stare for a while. I found it helpful to remove my glasses.

Saturday, January 04, 2003

I led a nice hike today for OAW. Four of us went to Don Edwards San Francisco Bay Wild Life Refuge and did what turned out to be the 5 mile Newark Slough trail. I thought it was four miles. Oops. It was a nice group. I talked a lot with Jo and Sandy but didn't get to talk to Anne much. The hike was a challenge for Sandy. She didn't quite have an idea of just how long the hike was going to be. I think she was expecting more like a 3 mile hike than a 5 mile hike. It was a party sunny day. We started the hike in the bright sun shine and while on the hike the sun would go in and out of the clouds. We saw many geese on this hike and we saw someone walking her cat. We had lunch at an old dock like structure. We finished up the hike at around 1:30 p.m. and so I was home by 2:30 p.m.

I took a nice shower when I got back and then headed off to Office Max to get a printer cartridge, a shredder, and some hanging folders. I parked the car and was just about to walk in when I realized my wallet was on the table at home. I had to drive back home and get it and then go back. I found all my items easily. That was a new one for me. Usually my errands to Office Max involve going up and down the aisles trying to find the item I want or at least trying to decide what brand to get. The shredder was quite a bit cheaper than I expected. It was only aorund 15 dollars. Of course the printer cartridge was the most expensive. The hanging folders cost about as much as I expected. I had fun with the shredder when I got home. I had some documents from work that I needed to shred and it was nice to not have to sit here and rip up the pages. It was fun to feed the machine and see the paper get sucked up and cut up into 1/4 inche strips.

I'm doing better than I thought with my worries about Mom. I seem to be able to not dwell on it and be able to enjoy my activities. I'll probably dwell on it more as the test result date comes up.

Tomorrow I'm going to the Pepperdine vs Stanford womens basketball game. I'm looking forward to getting to see Nicole Powell play some more. She is just returning from an injury: a bulging disk in her back. She was a little rusty but still looked really good. She is so incredibly smooth and yet fast. It is a joy to watch her play basketball.

Friday, January 03, 2003

Aack. Mom has to have lymph node tests to check if the melanoma has metastasized. She and my Dad will be driving to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN on Jan 7th and the lymph node test is on Jan 8th. I am fervently hoping that the melanoma has not metastasized. Its going to be hard having to wait till the results are back. I will try and email her everyday before she leaves as she says hearing from all of us kids really makes her feel better. She feels pretty good physically but is very nervous and panicky. She had a panic attack last night but was able to use relaxation techniques to overcome it and calm down. Wish I were there to give her a big hug. I'm glad Dad is there to talk with her and hold her.

The silly ants at work have found my cube. I spent an hour this morning washing ants off the surface of the shelf where I keep my coffee pot. I also pulled the plastic trash bag out of the trash bin as there was a big ant rave going on in there. A fellow around the office kindly offered to take the trash bag to the outdoor garbage bin and he gave me what he called an ant farm. Its a flat rectangle you put on the floor and it attracts the ants and I assume kills them: something similar to a roach motel. I have a paper towel next to me so when I see the stray ant I can smoosh it. Before I leave tonight I will be sure all my food is sealed up tight, that the coffee pot shelf is clean and dry, and that the old filter with coffee grounds in it is removed from the coffee pot. I don't want the ants to have another rave in my cube while I'm gone for the weekend!!

Check out my Yahoo Aries' horoscope for today: ARIES. Wild huh? Hope it comes true for me. I am going to a Stanford women's basketball game tonight and there are lots of lesbians there. Who knows?

Thursday, January 02, 2003

Hurray. The December monthly is done. I wrote the first draft of Lily's evaluation and will have to wait on my supervisor to OK what I wrote before I show it to Lily. I probably should start working on my self evaluation which is called the performance screen, but I'm all out of evaluation energy for this week.

I started Jan 1, 2003 feeling icky. I woke up feeling way tired and soon after breakfast felt diarrhea coming on (is there any more delicate word for diarrhea?). I ditched the idea of going on the Mission Peak hike at that point. I didn't relish the thought of stomping off trail in the mud to find a private spot to go to the bathroom every hour or so. Staying at home worked out much better. I snoozed, watched TV, and visited the bathroom for most of the morning. The diarrhea finally went away around noonish.

I spent the afternoon cleaning up my files. I really got into it. I now have very clean organized Visa files, health files, insurance files, and auto repair files. Mostly the hanging files were just too stuffed with paper and filing new stuff was becoming a pain. I transferred lots of stuff into notebooks and put them in my guest room closet. So now the hanging files are nice and thin and it will be easy to file the new stuff in them. There are still some fat files to be attacked though: my tax file needs to be emptied a bit by putting tax return info for 2001 and before into a notebook to go in the guest room closet. Hmmm. What does it say about me that I can write such a long enthusiastic paragraph about cleaning out my files?

Tonight I'm going to San Francisco for gift exchanging with the Donjacours. This visit does feel like a chore and not a pleasure. Maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised when I get there and have a good time. I would guess if I'm going with the attitude that it won't be fun, it probably won't be fun so I'll try and think more positive about the visit for the rest of the day.

Lots of basketball this weekend. On Friday Stanford plays Oklahoma then on Sunday they play Pepperdine.

I'm worried about Mom. The mole they removed from her calf before Christmas turned out to be a melanoma. She has to go to a surgeon to have more skin removed to be sure they get all the cancer. I hope things move fast and she can get this done sooner rather than later. Send positive healing vibes my Mom's way if you're reading this!