Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Kitty's gonna Kit; Pyrex gonna Py

Tomorrow marks week three after catching the sick and I'm finally feeling better. Still coughing (because goodness knows I wouldn't want to spend a day not doing that!) and still a bit weak and sore in my core but overall I'm feeling much more like my old self. And I can talk again! World beware. So here's a quick update of all things fanged and fragile.

Our friend Chris got us a cat for Christmas/Yule. She knew we were looking and so she paid half of the adoption fee which was the only reason we were able to get a cat and it was damn nice of her. We visited her rescue ccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccc                                                                                                                                                    yttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttth6777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777x

Okay... so I left the computer for a minute and came back to the above nonsense. Since it was the new cat who inserted said nonsense, I've decided to leave it for your viewing pleasure. Also it ties in nicely with my explanation of this cat's proclivities. 

So back to where I was: we visited the rescue and found a four month old little orange tabby. He came from a feral mama but had been fostered pretty much since birth with his brothers and sister. Of the litter he was the smallest as well as the last to be adopted. So we brought him home. Narcisa had things to say. Mostly hissing things to say. But it hasn't even been a week and the cats are already playing and chasing each other. They sniff each other a lot and are not aggressive toward each other at all, however it may still take some time before they cuddle. If they ever do cuddle. But I think eventually Thorin (that is the little one's name) will wear her down.

In the mean time however the Son of Thrain has found his calling in dismantling our computers. He took mine off internet access for two days. It wasn't that he put it into airplane mode... no he somehow erased my computer's connection to our wifi. Hannah had to work her magic and run a whole bunch of cleaners before I was able to get back on the net. No sooner was my compy back up and running did he waltz over to Hannah's and erase all her icons. He's been known to turn off the computers as well as save print-screen images to Hannah's one drive. Yeah, he's pretty good with the technology but that isn't surprising as most kids these days are born with a tablet in their hand. 

The cat and his shenanigans aren't the only reason for this post tonight. Earlier today, friend Rachel of kettle korn fame, came over to the house to hang out with us while Hannah made a butt-load of bierocks (German buns) and I made an equally loaded butt of baklava (honey-nut pastry). Apparently it was b-named food night in the Hannamanda kitchen. Anyhow, I made some fun alterations to the baklava. I am trying to think of a dairy and gluten free sort of substitute for a friend but that might not happen. I'm a wee bit discouraged, you see. I made the Krampus-klava (pumpkin spices and whiskey) without too much stress and followed that up with Snow-klava (the addition of sweetened coconut) but then I made my masterpiece: Freya's Delight Baklava. We named it that as I was constructing it. This baklava had everything in it apart from the kitchen sink. And the honey syrup mixture that I put on top was perfection! I set it on the stove to cool and went to work on a special fruit filled batch for my dad that I call Loaded Odin Baklava. 

I got one layer of Loaded Odin down when there was a sudden loud pop-crack sound. I looked up to see Freya's delight (and Rachel's very special baking dish that she had let me borrow) scattered all over the kitchen with a decent sized fire roaring over the burner. A burner that I had left on. I feel like a moron for that rookie mistake but I know that I'm not the only one who has done it and I take solace in knowing that while it's embarrassing at least it is common enough to illicit a teensy bit of sympathy from my culinary friends. The best part about this sudden emergency was that none of us panicked. Hannah quickly and efficiently herded the cats to the bedroom and closed them in while Rachel and her boyfriend helped me to extinguish the fire (baking soda is my new best friend) and clean up massive chunks of broken glass and honey. What a fucking mess! But how cool of them to help me. 

The kitchen counters are very clean now and I'm nearly 100% certain that there is no glass in the bierocks that Hannah made earlier. I suppose if we find blood in our stool we shall know otherwise. The last thing I have do to now is to mop the kitchen and that will have to wait until morning. I'm exhausted and it wasn't until Rachel and her boyfriend left that I realized how late it was. Today has been an interesting one to be sure. (Or yesterday into today rather, since it is still in the very wee hours of the morning right now.) 

At first we thought the breaking dish might have been a sign that we'd angered the gods or that we were somehow undergoing a sort of curse. Earlier in the evening my Yule tree fell over on the table for no seemingly no reason. So the tree falling and dish breaking all seemed a bit spooky at first but we realized in the end that the tree fell because I had neglected to ever balance it properly (something I have since rectified) and the dish broke because I'm a moron. In all actuality we can count this as a blessing because no one was hurt. We could have easily been in the kitchen and been cut, burned, or otherwise harmed when the dish exploded but everyone was off doing their own things. A cat could have been in there, or been in the tree. But no kitties were harmed either. Aside from adding a lot of cleaning to the evening and wasting a batch of baklava (and the loss of Rachel's dish which I'm still very sad about as the dish had belonged to her mother who is no longer with us) the evening was a fairly decent one. 

Monday, December 12, 2016

Coughing for Christmas

This Tuesday will mark two full weeks of upper respiratory infection. It feels like it's been months. The worst of it is over. I no longer have the fevers, the shakes, the horrible congestion that makes me throw up and piss myself. I feel, for the most part, like a regular human, except that now I am a coughing machine. I suspect it's the damage I've done to my throat and airways over the past two weeks that are keeping the cough well and alive. Which means I'm right back to dealing with piddling here and there because I can only take so much coughing before my eyes water, my nose runs, and my bladder leaks. Today I couldn't get much out without being winded by cough. At work I sounded horrible and after work, at my mom and dad's house, I sounded even worse. 

We went to see my mom tonight and do a little Christmas shopping. (The roads were fun in the "wow, maybe this was a horrible idea, we might die!" kind of way). We don't have much money and many of our friends are just getting the flat Hannah and Amanda versions of ourselves that we are working on. But even in tight times I still like to treat my Hannah and my parents to a stocking full of goodies come Christmas morning. For Hannah and I we open gifts in honor of Yuletide, but with the folks we will always do a Christmas thing. There is something very magical and mysterious in the quietude of Christmas morning when the whole world (or at least a generous portion) takes a break and just watches a loved one open a gift. Doesn't matter what the gift is... somewhere in the world little hands are tearing at tissue paper, a teenager is breaking in a brand new karaoke machine, a husband is ignoring the instructions as he puts together a bike, a dog is gnawing a new bone, and a cat is playing with a wrapper. That's what Christmas is to me - a time of year when secular, Christian, and Pagan traditions all come together to invite fellowship. No matter what entity or vision of Santa Claus a person celebrates, they are still celebrating. Even the bah-humbug, Grinch-wannabes are participating in the energy. Whether they want to or not. The harder you look away, the more energy you are sending out. 

And I'll be spending most of this magical morning with my Dispatch rep at work. There will be no customer calls that day. I'll mainly be providing carrier line back up and checking emails. I plan on bringing in something yummy for her and I to munch on as well as bringing in Dutch Bro's coffee for us. I am Starbuck's girl through and through, but my Dispatch Peep is all about the DB. One thing I've learned being a lead in newspaper circulation: keep your Dispatch happy. So I swing the way of the Dutch Bro's when I'm there with Dispatch. It's a small sacrifice to make to keep the world turning. 

Speaking of circulation and all that jazz, today was made of suck. It was so stressful and so busy and I had to wrangle so many attitudes. And all this while coughing out a series of distressed foghorn signals and trying not to fill the cushion of computer chair with Prednisone scented piss. I have one day left. Tomorrow I work from 7:30 until 4:30pm. After that I'm free for over a week! With Hannah applying for disability much of that free time is going to go toward doctor's appointments but still, that's a much different level of stress than going in to work to listen to the pre-Holiday rage that always seems to happen to the customer class right before we get the magical Christmas morning scene. This month has turned out much busier than I had wanted it to and I'm a little worried that any time off I have is going to fly by so fast it'll leave my head spinning.Still I'm going to make the most of my time away from work. I'm going to recharge and get ready for the new year and hope that at the very least 2017 will see me free from persistent coughing. 

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Hashiburi desu ne?

Which means 'it's been a while, yeah?' And it has been a while since I've posted. The only reason I'm settling down enough to post a blog at the moment is because my head is about to explode if I don't stop moving so here I am. Things have been busy. With it so very close to Christmas and Yule I'm really feeling the brunt of not having much money. People are going to be getting home made gifts this year (not that home made is anything to sneer at) but typically I like being able to spoil friends when I can. However, the gifts Hannah is making are truly wonderful and will spoil our friends nicely I think. Also this year I've decided for my friends who live far away (beyond a few hours drive to reach) that I'm going to do a fun and interactive Christmas/Yule gift this year. And I have a weekend off coming up during which I hope to get most of this done and then as soon as I'm paid again, get it all mailed out. 

At the moment I'm 'resting.' On Tuesday, whatever it is that Hannah's got (presumably the seasonal bronchitis that seems to be ringing in many peoples' December) hit me like a ton of bricks! I felt perfectly fine all day and then suddenly it just attacked me. I ended staying home from work for a while the next day but had to go in as most of our staff also is sick. Today I stayed home again and I'm really pissed about it. I wanted to be there to help and I know they really needed the assistance what with being so short staffed, but today I fell victim to laryngitis the likes of which I have never known. If I were being pursued by a murderer right now, I wouldn't even be able to call for help. Even during my worst vocal node episodes in the past, I've never felt quite this without voice. It's infuriating and a little scary. I've been sucking down warm beverages and soft foods today and come hell or high water I'm going in to work tomorrow. I may only be able to do non verbal work which sucks for my compatriots on the phones but at the same time it would free them up from having to worry about emails and other such business. I hope I have at least a little voice though. 

Aside from all of that, I've been trying to rest my body, voice, and chest... but am a restless creature when I'm laid down. So I've been cleaning a little. I cleaned the bathroom and the hallway and mopped both. I've been doing laundry too. These things have happened in quick bouts of energy that later result in pathetic, voiceless whimpering curled up on the couch. We've been watching old movies like "An Affair to Remember," and "How to Catch a Thief." We started "Sunset Boulevard" this morning and had to keep going back as we would either fall asleep or had other things going on. Somehow I managed to whine enough (via Hannah who acted as my voice) to my parents that they actually came over for a little bit to tend their sick daughters. They brought the makings for hot toddies and some soups. In exchange for that I made them pancakes with blueberries and coffee. And every time I opened my mouth to try a hoarse whisper of conversation they shut that shit right down. It was frustrating. But at the same time I was really missing the 'mom' and 'dad' voice. 

In other news, Christmas/Yule is on its way! We've been decorating the house and apart from the fact that it looks disheveled as hell in the aftermath of our sickness, the winter theme is coming through quite nicely. Which brings me full circle. Christmas and Yule this year... I am very sad at my lack of finances. Next year may be even worse but for now I'm going to do my best to try and embrace the 'thought' and 'intentions' that make gift giving more important than any gift. 

Recently watched the full series of Death Parade and really enjoyed it.
I wanted to share the ending theme for those who might be interested. 
Such a sad and psychological anime. I loved every minute of it!