1/15/18 Chronicles

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Latest Post - This Week

  Monday 1/8/18

dining roomI haven't done a good job this week with my blog! I got really behind. I hate always being behind...

The cleaning lady, Yolanda, is coming tomorrow. I had hoped that I could put all of the Christmas decorations away before they came, but I realized I didn't have the time and energy. I did get the tree undecorated yesterday, and today I did put it back in the box, so it's going into the garage. I had all of the decorations spread out all over the dining room, kitchen, and the smaller dining area, so I just had to move everything to the regular dining room. I figure I can then take my time, putting everything away.  That room is the easiest to clean, so I can just clean it myself later on.  The rest of the house is so filthy and really needs cleaning.

Besides the decorations, I also had to prepare the rest of the house. I always put away all of the excess stuff (knick-knacks, pillows, photos, throw pillows, plants, etc.) to make it easier and quicker for them to clean. Makes a bit more work and time for me, but it's okay. Better me than them.

I did quite a few other things this weekend, like work on my site, and making sure laundry and dishes were done. I'd made quite a mess of this one little spot in the kitchen where I keep my appliances (from all the cooking and baking), so I cleaned that. I have covers for all my appliances, and I washed those.

I always clean the small dining table near our kitchen before we have the house cleaned, and I put all of the plants on there, so that Yolanda can clean the other areas where the plants are kept.

It's been pretty cold all week! I'm ready for nice weather in the 70's again.

Apparently there was a big football game and Alabama won, so that's great! Roll Tide!

Brandy jumping up to say hi  Tuesday 1/9/18

Basically, I didn't sleep all night. It took me until about 4am to get everything done, and then I was too keyed up to sleep (because I'd slept in pretty late yesterday).

After Yolanda arrived, Brandy and I went into the guest room to hang out. I had put in all of Brandy's toys, and kept part of the bed clear for me, and I had my laptop and other stuff in there. I told Yolanda to clean that room last, and then I napped in there for a few hours. I also told Yolanda not to bother cleaning the dining room with all of the Christmas decorations, as well as the few other places I had already cleaned.

It's a big place, and she's just one, very thorough, middle-aged woman, so it takes a long time to clean. When she has some help from her daughter, it still takes 5 hours! Today she was here for 7 hours. Imagine if I didn't move all of my knick-knacks and stuff out of the way, and she had to pick each of those up and wipe them, as well! It would add at least another hour or so. I'm glad she does such a great job, though.  The microwave was pretty disgusting, and now it's so clean!

I found out something cool today... If you have Verizon Wireless (cell phone service), then you can send and receive text messages on your computer! They had this service for a while, but for some reason, it didn't work well for me. Now it does. I hate texting on my phone. The screen and buttons are small. I will still have to if I'm out of the house, of course, but at least now I can type on my laptop if I have it handy.  I don't do a lot of actual text-messaging, except with my SIL. She doesn't do much email, and she doesn't do social media, so we only text or talk on the phone.

They're saying it might snow next Tuesday! That would be great. I hope it's more than just a light dusting.

I was able to go to sleep a little earlier tonight, which is great, since tomorrow is the first day of classes! Not that I have to get up super early (just early for me!).  I'm taking just three classes this semester instead of four, so it should be much easier.

Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, I have a Mass Comm class
MM3603: 11-12:20 called Directed Study II. It's about Videos: Present and Future. 
Tuesdays and Thursdays I have another Mass Comm/Mass Media class, MCOM4003: 12:10-1pm called Media Law and Ethics. This one sounds kind of boring, to be honest.  My third class is my voice lesson, which I take every semester. I don't know yet when that will be. I should find out next week.

You can find all of the syllabi and course projects on my professor's site here.  If you're interested! You can find some of my work on the other classes there that I've taken.

I have a desktop computer in our bedroom that I use for just one thing on my website, making transcripts of the soaps every day. It is not booting up correctly, so I'm going to have to get it repaired. I hope they can fix it! I'd rather not have to buy another one... I want David to buy a new small laptop, so he can use it at home, and I can take it when I go to class. He probably won't if we have to buy a new desktop or spend a lot of money repairing the other one.

  Wednesday 1/10/18

The weather was great today! In the 70's. A nice day to start the new semester.

Christina, my driver, picks me up about an hour before class; I like to have plenty of time in case she's late, or I'm sick, etc. as well as getting a soda before class (which is in a different building across the quad from my classes).

Christina has two other jobs. One of them is helping people with their taxes (she has an office and everything), and now her tax season is heating up. She thought she would be able to do all this, but she's saying it's going to be too difficult to pick me up now, with that job.  So I'm going to have to find someone else. Bummer!

Brandy on the leashI've been walking Brandy every day as soon as I get home from class.  I'm usually very tired, but it's good to get that out of the way,  so I can relax.

I called the computer repair place, and they can't pick up my computer until Friday. Darn it!

Class was fine. It's a little different this semester. For the past year, I had two of Professor Reppert's classes in a row in the same room, from 11-1.  So I liked to get there early, set up my laptop, and do some work before class. But now there's a class in there before I start, and I only have one class at a time with thatSlow cooker same professor. Which means if I get here too early, I have to sit out in the hallway, which is not that comfortable. Either I need to get picked up a little later, or I need to hang out longer in Reynolds (where I buy my soda).

My slow cooker arrived! It's huge. I bought this particular one because it was green, to match my kitchen. It's more than just a slow cooker. It does other things like searing and baking. Should be interesting to try it out. It comes with a big recipe book, too. I'm getting a lot of good recipes from friends on Facebook, too.

It looks like both of my classes are blogging classes. Basically, instead of turning in papers, we just write in our blogs. They still have to be school-paper worthy, though (not like writing in this blog!). Not only does it have to be really well written, and researched, we have to have lots of links and some photos. It has to look nice, too.blog

I stayed up way too late working on my blogs! It took me about 9 hours. First, I have a blogger site (a few, in fact), but I hadn't logged in for awhile, so it took me some time to remember which email address I used, what my password was, etc.  Then I realized I hadn't updated ta certain blog I have there, so I updated that one.  Then I had to set up the two blogs, which means picking a name, setting up the basic template, choosing the colors, picking a domain name, etc.  Then I decided to write the first blog post for today's class, which is relatively "easy" for me. It's all about my own personal video usage. It's supposed to be between 500-700 words, but mine came out to about 2000! The professor doesn't mind, thankfully. Then writing means I also have to proofread and spellcheck it. Blogger has a terrible spellcheck, so I copied it over to Word and ran that one. Well, that messed up a lot of stuff in the coding and it took me quite a while to fix that. Then I had to put in the links and photos.  Some of the links were to pages on my sites, so I decided to update those pages.  All of these things take time, so that's why it took so long...that 9 hours also includes cooking and eating dinner, and any breaks I took.  Whew!

The first blog is at https://slanoue1.blogspot.com/ It should be at http://www.suz1.net whenever they get the domain name working.  The second blog is at https://slanoue2.blogspot.com/ and will hopefully be accessible by http://www.suz2.net

I emailed Linda, and it looks like her schedule has changed, so she can take me in to school except for Tuesdays and Fridays. Christina will continue onmess those days until I find someone else.

Christina told me (a little last minute - she forgot she had an appointment tomorrow!) that she can't take me tomorrow morning. Luckily, Linda said she can take me.

  Thursday 1/11/18

Linda took me in to school this morning. It was nice to see her. She had a terrible thing happen over the holidays, though. So shocking! I won't go into the details since I have no idea how she feels about her privacy.

After I got home, that naughty puppy had started chomping on my cabbage plant and then dragged it all over the sunroom and spread the dirt from the pot all over. What a mess! Thankfully garlic powderthe vacuum got most of it.

I was sick quite a bit this week from something I'm eating with gluten, so I've been testing the food at home more. I found out that the garlic powder I've been using is not safe. Same with the rum extract!  Bummer. I had a lot of food I'd made with both. I'm giving it to the dog, a little at a time.  Dogs shouldn't have garlic, but this is a very small amount. I tested some of my other foods and seasonings as well, but they were all gluten-free. I tested the Gorton frozen grilled tilapia and it came out OK.salad

I had a salad at Chick-Fil-A, so I tested the parts of that. Their grilled chicken is always gluten-free, but I also tested the dressing, the nuts, and the blue-cheese crumbles. The last item is not gluten-free, unfortunately. I didn't test it until I had eaten half of it, so that was a bad idea. Too bad because those blue cheese crumbles are delicious!

Unfortunately, the NIMA gluten sensor capsules are about $8 apiece, so it's pretty expensive. It's a hard thing to decide, do I trust this food, or spend a lot rain in backyardof money testing it? UGH. I already had to order an extra dozen capsules this month, and I fear i may have to order more.  I joined their "Premium Membership," which is $20. You get a free box of capsules every month, plus you can get a small discount if you want to order another box. It's worthsnow in the forecast it, but I still wish they were cheaper.

It rained all afternoon and evening, and it's supposed to rain more tomorrow. It might be rain mixed with ice and/or snow, so we'll have to see what happens.  It's very cold tonight, but no sign of snow as far as I can see. I stayed up way too late!

  Friday 1/12/18

I was tired when I woke up and didn't want to go in to school.... there is some snow and ice on the ground, so I took photos of it. Unfortunately, it wasn't enough to cancel classes. Darn!some snow in the backyard

After Christina dropped me off at Reynolds, I saw a tiny little fat kitten lurking around a car. She ran under the car when I approached her. I hope someone rescued her. I told the cafeteria ladies about her, and one of them went out there. I hope she was able to find her. She was such a little round ball of fluff. I would have taken a photo, but it was way too cold for me to take my hands out of the gloves and take my camera out of my purse.

A few weeks ago, I tried to find a free or cheap Star Wars ringtone for my phone. I couldn't find anything on the Verizon site via my phone. I went on the Google Play store and found one, but then after I downloaded it, I couldn't find it. I thought it was in the download folder.  I phoned up Verizon to help me, but the guy was not very helpful. Also, he seemed to be having trouble hearing me (it sounded like there was a lot of other chatter behind him, so maybe that's why). And then, worse, when I said, hello, are you still there? He would say that he was waiting for me (since he hadn't heard me). It was very frustrating. I then found that ringtone again, and there were many complaints that it didn't work, so I guess that was the problem. I still couldn't find what I wanted, though. So then I decided to go back to my laptop and find something there and make it into a ringtone. I found a great Star Wars medley on youtube that is actually made by singers, so I wanted to use that one. Now, for quite a while now, I noticed some distortion whenever I listened to music on my laptop. I thought it was either my speakers, or the hole where the earphones plug in.  Well, when I tried to record it using my Total Recorder software (which records any streaming sound or video), it was still distorted after I transferred it to my phone. Ah-ha, I thought, so it's something in the software, not in my speakers. I even rebooted and that didn't help.  I tried it on Chrome as well and that didn't help.  I did find the main Star Wars theme on Amazon and downloaded it, and so I just used that.  I still wanted to record that medley for myself, though. I tried it in Microsoft Edge, and finally, there was no distortion when I streamed it from YouTube. However, when I listened to the recording from Total Recorder, it was all messed up (in a different way). I don't know if this is related to the other problem, or something completely different! Computers. You gotta love 'em, right? SIGH.  Eventually I found a plug-in that allowed me to download the audio from the YouTube video, so I can at least have that medley to play in iTunes.

I sent an email to Dell to get help with the problem, but they haven't been helpful. They don't seem to understand what I'm asking. So far I've explained it three times. I really hate to call them up. I hate talking to tech support and people like that on the phone.

Speaking of sounds...when David goes out, Brandy always whines and waits by the door. I usually play some soothing sounds or music for dogs on YouTube. It seems to work!

My classes this semester seem pretty fun and easy so far (no tests!). I still need to put away the rest of the Christmas decorations!

  Saturday 1/13/18

We went to the Italian restaurant for lunch and did our usual errands...

I really need to find some more help on my website. It's so hard to find more volunteers nowadays. I spent a lot of time chatting with this guy in India about it, and then he changed his mind and decided he wouldn't help after all. Grrr!

I spent a lot of time working on my site and doing some housework...otherwise, I've just been pretty lazy.  Monday is a holiday! Yay!

We might be going to Little Rock in one of the weekends coming up, so that would be great.  I hope we find out soon.

Once I can stop making myself sick with food, then I can be more productive and get more stuff done. I seem to have a lot of Facebook friends who worry about being "happy." I have to say, I've never been one to be particularly unhappy. I just like keeping busy and being productive. I guess that's fun for me. 

If you're unhappy, do something about it. (I'm not talking about people with actual clinical depression - those people should get therapy and/or medication).  Start with yourself. Work on making yourself a kind person if you're not one already. Help other people. Volunteer. Go out and find people who have similar interests. Make friends. Don't worry about finding "the one" or your "soul mate." That's just nonsense. No one is happy all the time, and no one has a perfect relationship. It takes hard work to make ANY relationship, other than a casual one. If you can't get a good job, maybe you need a college degree (it's never too late!). Or maybe you need to change careers. Or maybe you need to move to an area where there are more jobs. Sitting around and complaining about it on social media will NOT fix the problem of your life.

Yes, I do complain, myself, but not about being unhappy. Usually I'm just complaining about something that's upsetting me, pissing me off, or generally aggravating me, and those things don't last very long. Neither do my negative emotions. I don't stay mad or upset for very long!

I'm enjoying going back to school. I don't have a ton of friends yet, but I know that eventually I will. It just takes time, and patience. I can't be in a band or do karaoke here, and I can't go out to many movies.  The town is too small right now. No sense crying about it. Focus on the things you do have. I have a nice house and a great husband and dog.  Animals can bring you so much joy. As the cliché goes, I'm trying to be the best version of me that I can be. I'm trying to lose weight, keep my diabetes under control, and not make myself sick with gluten. I'm trying to learn from my classes and improve my singing.  Even though I can't drive, my job doesn't pay me anything, and I don't have a lot of friends where I live, I'm perfectly content.  One day I will probably be very happy again. I will graduate, and hopefully I can improve my site. I can pick up the guitar again and be in a band. Who knows? No one knows what the future holds, especially if you embrace change.

I was chatting with someone on Facebook the other day who is younger than me and said he's given up. He just drinks and has no family, and he feels that he's just too old now to find someone or to do much of anything with his life. It was very sad.  You're never too old. Even people who are disabled or elderly don't give up in this way, so why should you? Be glad that you even have a life and can be mobile, or go online, or whatever your gifts are. I know life can be depressing, but giving in to despair never helped anyone.

ENOUGH OF MY SELF-HELP LECTURE! I'll leave that to Dr. Phil ;)

I did the dishes today and finally finished putting back all of the little knick-knacks I had put away for the cleaning. Took me long enough!Brandy on the couch

I found a lot of Christmas chocolate that I had hidden away. I accidentally ingested two pieces that may have had barley in them. I hope I don't get too sick!

  Sunday 1/14/18

I've just been sleeping in way too much and staying up too late! As usual. It's not good, especially when I have to get up earlier for school.

I spent most of the day working on my site.  We didn't go to the grocery store like we normally do. We did go to the Mexican restaurant down the street for dinner.

Today is the first day in a while that I haven't gotten sick, so that's great. Also, Brandy hasn't peed on the rugs for 5 straight days! Yay!! I hope it sticks this time.  I've also been trying to teach her a few other things, like not jumping up on me, particularly when I'm walking, and telling her to go away when I don't want her to bother me. She seems to be getting it, so far.

Speaking of sticking, it's still supposed to snow on Tuesday, so we'll see....

Brandy loves it when she gets to jump up on my lap, or on the couch, or on the bed, which she isn't always allowed to do. Maybe someday she will be allowed to do it more, but right now she's still just too rambunctious.  She could sleep on the bed with us, but she doesn't stay still. She wants to nibble our feet or bite the blankets. Same with being up on the couch. She doesn't stay still or quiet for very long.  We will all be glad when she grows out of her puppy hood antics!

I've been sneezing my head off all night. UGH.

I hope you all have a great MLK Day!

Happy Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day!

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