Tuesday, August 21, 2007


I'm busted. I went to get a book out one of the boxes in the office today. The books I wanted were in the bottom box of course. I picked up the top box, and went to set it down on the floor. It started to slip out of my hands and instead of letting it go, I lunged forward and something in my lower back went funky. I could barely get out of the room, and I only made it as far as the hallway. I laid down on the floor for almost a half hour in pain. I've twisted things, and strained my muscles before, but this was by far some of the worst pain I've ever had. Eventually I made it down to the living room, and laid down on there floor there for a while. Every time I got up I got dizzy and lightheaded.

I was really worried that I wasn't going to be able to make it to work. There's no way I wanted to call in on my third day on the job, but driving while in pain and almost passing out didn't seem like a great idea either. After almost an hour I was able to get up and take some medication. I took a hot bath and tried to relax it as much as possible. It was enough to get dressed and go to work. And amazingly work wasn't too bad. It's still horribly painful, but I'm relaxing on the couch with a hot pack for a few hours before bed. It's just the left side of my lower back. And it feels like when my lower back is tight and it needs to crack...but sharper. That moment just before the muscles relax and the pain goes away. But this won't go away. If it's still really bad tomorrow I'll see if my mom will pay for me to go to a chiropractor, just to make sure that I didn't do any actual damage. I don't think I did, I think I just strained it, but I'd like to make sure.

Friday, August 17, 2007

New Job

Today was my first day at the new job. It went really well. It was a nice short day too, which was probably good. Since I haven't exactly had a regular schedule in the year I've been looking for jobs, jumping right into an 8-5, 40 hour a week job would have been a huge shock. I worked 3.5 hours today, and I work 6.5 hours tomorrow. And then I get Sunday off. I got my schedule for the first week, and I'll have 40 hours, so I am ridiculously relieved. It sounds like they are short staffed and really need people with a flexible schedule to fill in. And since my schedule is completely open right now, I shouldn't have any trouble getting a decent number of hours.

Unfortunately I won't get to dress quite as nicely as I hoped. It looks like I'll be wearing black pants/khakis and either a sage green polo shirt or a pale yellow cardigan sweater set. So yes. I will be dressing like a 70 year old woman who shops at Land's End. Compared to wearing my grossest jeans and an XXL hunter green polo shirt with a picture of a cow on the back like I had to wear at my last job...it's a definite improvement. And I no longer will be up to my elbows in raw ground beef. Sitting at a desk answering phones and giving directions is pretty much a dream come true.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Waiting for October

Despite the fact that it's supposed to be 90 degrees and humid today, or maybe because of it, I've been dreaming of fall. I'm a jeans and sweater kind of girl, forget the shorts and tank tops. I'd rather be taking a walk through the woods than sunbathing. I prefer hot spiced cider to ice cold lemonade. If something is pumpkin spice flavored, I'll buy it, no matter what it is. Granola bars, body butter, cat litter...I don't care. Sadly, they have yet to invent pumpkin spice scented litter, but it has to be more appetizing than the floral scent they usually use.

I've been collecting fall recipes. Cider Braised Pork Chops, Roasted Squash with Sage, Pumpkin Spice Bread. I want tweed skirts and cable knit sweaters. I bought a rusty orange suede and brown leather purse in June. I want to knit chunky warm scarves. Sip orange spice tea and curl up under a heavy blanket while I read. I want pumpkins on my front steps and gusting winds. Crisp, dry cold air and the scent of leaves. I want to enjoy spending time in the kitchen. Sprinkle nutmeg and cinnamon and swirl it through deep orange batter. I want to lean up against the warm stove and relax. I want a giant steaming bowl of squash soup with crusty rustic bread to dip into it. I want cider and doughnuts. I want to pick crisp apples off of the trees and make pots of chunky applesauce.

I want to wear my fall perfumes. I want Jack, "The scent of warm, glowing jack o'lanterns on a warm autumn night: true Halloween pumpkin, spiced with nutmeg, glowing peach and murky clove.". I want to smother myself in The Hesperides, "Their perfume is that of sturdy oak bark, dew-kissed leaves, twilight mist and crisp apple.". I want to light candles and listen to the very mellow and dark band Morphine while it drizzles rain outside.

Take your blue skies and fluffy clouds, and bring me heavy grey skies and bright colored leaves.

Friday, August 10, 2007

What I'm Reading...Books

I've still been reading a lot. I finished A Clash of Kings and tore through A Storm of Swords and A Feast for Crows. In the process I forgot that he hadn't finished the rest of them yet, and nearly cried when I found out that I was going to have to wait to keep reading. I'm not very patient, especially when it comes to books. I want more books...and I want them NOW. Obviously, the four I have read are very good, and very interesting. I won't say much more than that until I finish the series.

I also got several books at a garage sale for 10 cents each. They were in good condition and part of my favorite series. There are a series of books by Laurie R. King, she is a really good writer, and I always enjoy her books. I love historical fiction, and especially historical mysteries. But it can sort of be a dangerous genre. There are many terrible historical mysteries. Either they're poorly written, or they are romance novels in disguise. Masquerading as legitimate fiction. Now don't get me wrong, I don't have anything against people who read romance novels, but let's be honest here, they're basically erotica. I understand that not everyone is comfortable admitting they enjoy reading about sex, but frankly I'd be more embarrassed to be out in public with a book that has a woman in a low cut bodice being mauled by a bare chested pirate than a genuine piece of erotic fiction. But that's just me. I've certainly read them, and some of them are pretty darn entertaining. But it's usually because I can't stop laughing at how cheesy they are. Like I said, no insult to people who read them, my 85 year old grandma certainly does.

Ahem. To veer wildly back on topic after my tangent there...the books by Laurie R. King are very good historical mysteries. I have read all of her Mary Russell series. The basic premise is that Sherlock Holmes has retired to the countryside of England, and he meets a young woman named Mary who he ends up taking on as an apprentice, and then a partner and eventually marries. That basic plot has some serious possibilities for hokeyness. But she's such a good writer it never falls into that. It's very believable. Mary is an intellectual match for Holmes and she bullies him into giving up the Victorian ideas that women are inferior. She's (gasp) an early feminist. The books I enjoy most usually have very strong female characters, and she's one of the best. I've read all eight of the books that are out, and when I got the books at the garage sale, they were books 1, 2, and 4. I think I now have the complete series. The first is The Beekeeper's Apprentice, the second is A Monstrous Regiment of Women, and the fourth is The Moor. I hope she comes out with a new one soon. Again with me being impatient. Definitely a series I would recommend, especially if you like mysteries.

I also read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, of course. I truly do love the books. I did my best to ignore them when they first came out. Anything so wildly popular seemed like it had to be absolute crap. But I finally gave in and read the first one, and I've been hooked ever since. I won't say anything that's a spoiler, just that I very much enjoyed the book. There was a small part I was disappointed by and that I am sad that the series is over. I actually hadn't planned on reading the book immediately. We never got around to pre-ordering, and we figured it would be impossible to get so we figured we'd wait. The Saturday after it came out we were at the grocery store and I noticed it on top of the U-Scan checkout. AND it was on sale for 40% percent off. So we grabbed it. Anthony mentioned that he'd be taking it with him when he left on his work trip that Monday, so I had to read it right away. I read for two hours the first night, and three the next morning. Yes. It took me 5 hours to read a 750 page book. Yes. I am a freak of nature. And that's why you love me, right?

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Surprise!...I'm not dead!

I haven't even been that busy. We haven't done much on the house thanks to the insane heatwave. We did make a trip to Kentucky for a weekend to visit Anthony's brother, which was fun, if a bit of a whirlwind. Other than that, I've been working my butt off to find a job. And guess what? I got one! I'm not so sure that it was because of anything I did in particular, I think it was just a matter of luck. But I'll take whatever I can get.

I applied for a ridiculously large number of jobs at the local hospital a few weeks ago, and got called for an interview last Friday. I had the first interview Monday, and a second Wednesday and got the actual job offer call today. I am so ridiculously excited. Which is sort of pathetic. It's not exactly my dream job, AND I am guaranteed very few hours, but it's a job. And after almost a full year of searching, I don't care. It's basically for a position at the Information desk. It's a per diem position, so not even part time, I'm only guaranteed 8 hours of work every two weeks. But pay is 9.50/hour (and a 2% raise in November, and then raises twice yearly) which was way more than I expected. And the woman I interviewed with said that there are usually quite a few options to pick up more hours, and that I'd be eligible for any part time or full time positions as they open up. And in 6 months, eligible for other open positions at the hospital. It's a good opportunity to get my foot in the door, which would be huge.

So I'm thrilled. It's an enormous amount of stress gone, which has been really rough to deal with this past year. I feel like I'm no longer stuck in neutral and that I'm going somewhere. And being a productive member of society, and such. Hooray!!!!! Plus, I get to actually dress nicely and sit at a desk and work, which is wonderful. I was dreading having to resort to working at a fast food place. Which is a terrifying thought.

Another fabulous thing is that I just sold 20 of my photo greeting cards. There is a girl I know online who makes custom gift baskets, and she bought the cards for those. Which is unbelievably exciting, because not only do I get the money she paid me for them. But if they do well, she'll buy more. And I'll print my email address and web address on them, so if people like them, they can buy more. Speaking of web addresses. I'm starting to work on my website again. I really want to get it put together, and get business cards printed so I can actually sell my work, and try to get some photography gigs. It's not really feasible as a full time thing now, but in addition to the job at the hospital, it would be perfect. Wish me luck! It looks like things are headed in a really great direction for me, and it's such a good feeling.