Months ago, rydra_wong posted Menstrual cups: why they are awesome and you should get one (if you are a menstruating person). Allow me to refer the menstruating persons reading this to it now, if they haven't seen it before.
On one hand, it's almost reassuring to try on maternity jeans that are so long that I could use them as footie pajamas, because at least it's clear that they are meant to be altered, rather than the manufacturers having peculiar ideas about the length of women's legs.
On the other hand, I should not have to have jeans altered just because I'm pregnant! Especially not when it's Saturday and I'm going out of town Tuesday morning.
And now, having wasted most of my afternoon on this, I'm going off to do some work. Whee.
(To make up for whining: have some new Emmy pictures, in the last half or so of this set.)
I had a bit of excitement, last week, when I turned my computer on . . . and found it caught in an endless reboot cycle because it couldn't load the OS. Fortunately, I had 1) the bootable CD that came with the computer, 2) the sure and certain knowledge that all of my data was backed up, and 3) relaxation techniques to keep me from wrecking my shoulders, jaw, and stomach while I determined that it was a software, not hardware, problem (some file in the boot sector had gotten corrupted).
Back up your data!
We bought an exercise bike a week ago. It uses magnets for resistance and so is remarkably quiet. So far, so good; I'm going to have to be very diligent about my stretches (hip bursitis), but otherwise no complaints. Oh, and very diligent about keeping the foolish dog away from it: I clonked her good right on the flat of her nose with the pedal, the first time I was pedaling away.
- My Neighbor Totoro is a charming, odd, low-key, family movie that deserves the label. I recommend it. Also, have some icons.
- We saw Amos Lee, Elvis Costello, and Bob Dylan in concert last night.
Unfortunately we missed all but the last couple of Lee's songs, but he was quite good and got a satisfyingly warm reception from the crowd. He closed with his best-known song, "Keep It Loose, Keep It Tight," and I think he may have played "Shout Out Loud" too, which you can hear at his website.
Costello was doing the very solo thing, him and a guitar. He came out and banged right into "(The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes," and did several songs before doing any stage patter at all. Good stuff, very energetic and entertaining, also notably smooth at getting the audience to sing without explicitly asking for it.
Dylan was touring with a band. I am not terribly familiar with his music, especially his recent stuff, so I can sum up my reaction in eight words: I like my pop music to have words.
Seriously, except for the occasional line, he might as well have been singing in Swedish. And I know he's capable of enunciating, because he did do it once in a while, and because he was great when we saw him in 1999. I ended up zoning out for much of the set, trying to relax in the uncomfortable seats. Fortunately, I was fully awakened by the last song, "All Along the Watchtower" Hendrix-style.
For the perspective of a Dylan fan, see Chad's report.
- Episode 51 of Bleach has an amazing number of characters and not much forward movement. (It was on Adult Swim while I was doing stretches after the concert.)
- Donate $30 to DonorsChoose and buy Chad's blog.
- Someone came to my booklog and put "i am searching for a spell to reverse timeto july29,2007" (sic) into the "search" box.
- Neighborhood fauna spotted recently: a fox, fireflies, bats, and frantically-active squirrels.
- Useful LJ bookmarklets, including one that will change pages to your style—even ones in "format=light".
- del.icio.us is my new obsession. I'm planning to use it for con report roundups, and to that end, added this year's Boskone links as a trial run. Any comments on the tagging or anything else? (Chad suggested tagging by panelist as well, but I'm uncertain about that; people often don't show or are added at the last minute, and not all panel reports will reflect that. However, if people would really like it, it can be done.)
(Also, for the auto-posting, I need to hide the tag lists with CSS or otherwise format them so they don't overwhelm the links (see what I mean?).)
We've been home from Japan for two weeks, now. I had an absurd amount of work upon my return (some of that is my fault; I should have known better). I also had jet lag by proxy, as it took Chad about a week to readjust. (My body clock seems to still be very flexible, for which I am grateful.) But we're pretty well caught up on sleep and work now and back in the routine.
In the anecdotal evidence file, I seemed to be coming down with a cold on the Monday we got back. I immediately started taking zinc and did not develop a full-blown cold. Perhaps it was just an abrupt reaction to local allergens, not a cold, but regardless, I'm grateful, because I really did not have time to be sick.
Random other things:
- Went to see Buffalo Tom last weekend; Chad has the report.
- Went shopping for exercise bikes yesterday. We're going to get some variant of Schwinn recumbent, as I don't have a bike and ellipticals (1) would make watching anime difficult, which is going to be my carrot and (2) take up too much room, including vertically as we're hoping to put the equipment in a room with a very low ceiling.
- Chad has a mystery anime query.
- I'm experimenting with del.icio.us these days. Does anyone else use Opera and find that changes made to the inline editing form aren't saved? Do you have a workaround?
- Roasted pork tenderloin with sage corn bread crust. Good even without the garlic.
- My mom is blogging. I particularly recommend Dog's Life (Top 5 reasons I wish I were my dog, Truman.) and Truman's Response.
- Finally, go, non-zero-sum football. The Giants made a great goal-line stand to hold off the Redskins, and the Patriots scored 38 points for the third straight game.
I don't really know how long it's been since I've done a life update, and so I will probably forget a boatload of stuff. On the other hand, if I've forgotten it, it probably wasn't that important.
Probably the most consequential news is my jaw. ( medical stuff, cut for length )
In other news, a friend from high school is getting married, so I've been back to Massachusetts for the shower & a bachelorette day (lunch and a spa visit. A facial is nice and all, but a massage—on a heated table—that's just bliss). If only I'd waited another week to write this, I could add the wedding to the list . . .
A while ago (err, end of April, which does put a lower limit on how long it's been since I did one of these), I was in NYC for work on a Friday, so we stayed over an extra night on our dime. We had a very lovely dinner with the Nielsen Haydens, and visited the Met on the way out. The new Greek and Roman galleries were more interesting than I expected, mostly thanks to the neat Roman wall paintings. The exhibit on Louis Comfort Tiffany's country estate has concluded, but I recommend seeing Venice and the Islamic World before it closes on July 8, because it was really excellent, full of informative and gorgeous stuff.
And I was absurdly happy to see that there was another offering of pennies at the same Ganesha statute as the last time I was there.
Anyway, the visit made me realize that I wanted a camera of my own. We have a quite good one, but it's too big for me to just toss in my purse when I go to museums, and there were a lot of things I'd have taken pictures of if I could. I have one picked out, but I'm not going to say what it is to discourage Chad from just buying it for my birthday. => (I think it's too expensive for a single-person gift and am somewhat uncouthly wanting money as gifts instead, which I can then aggregate into said camera.)
As for more recent stuff, I'm kind of behind on a lot of stuff I need to do this summer. There's reading all the Hugo [*] and Campbell nominees before it's time to vote, and re-reading the Harry Potter series before the seventh book comes out, and learning at least a little Japanese ("But I don't wanna, that's work," my subconscious whines), and getting all the logistics squared away (like what we're doing about the dog . . . ).
[*] Does anyone else use Palm's eReader and want the short fiction as nice marked-up files, complete with italics etc.? Minus the two stories only released as PDFs, that is.
And (not that it will help with getting stuff done) there will be Readercon. Woo!
Finally because I am getting tired, we saw Ocean's Thirteen today. Much better than the second, not as good as the first because ( oblique spoiler )
Earlier in March, we went to New York City on the occasion of relatives' birthdays and saw a musical called The Drowsy Chaperone about which I intend to write more, really, I promise. Getting half-price same day tickets makes for a really long day, but if we got tickets ahead of time, going down for a matinee would be quite workable, so we'll have to keep that in mind. Any particular recommendations? I should note that Chad's not much on musicals unless they're metafictional or have some other reason for people bursting into song.
We've also booked our Japan flights and hotels. All we need is the rail pass (90 days ahead) and our flight seat assignments (ditto; not that I have any great hopes of getting an exit row, but we'll try). Now I need to start thinking about learning the language . . .
And as discussed previously here, I started taking a yoga class. It's certainly exercise, but I haven't decided if I'll take another one; the instructor hasn't been very useful in telling me which exercises I should avoid or modify because of the bursitis in my hips, and I'm not suited to the less-concrete parts of the class. On the other hand, having a scheduled class is a good thing for a procrastinatory Kate. We'll see when it's over.
Last weekend we went to Boston. We spend all day Saturday at the Museum of Science, as it was hosting the Darwin exhibit that originated at the American Museum of Natural History. It had all the stuff you would expect, documents of Darwin's and fossils and specimens, all of which were informative and interesting—plus two Galapagos tortoises that I found terribly comic in how very slow and deliberate they were. As a complement, we went to the IMAX movie on the Galapagos, which includes some great underwater footage. After a break at Papa Razzi, a local chain Italian place, we just wandered around the Museum. Lots of the hands-on stuff still needs fixing, alas, but we still found plenty to entertain ourselves before having dinner with prince_eric and spouse. Sunday morning we put in an intense two hours at the Museum of Fine Arts: Japanese Bamboo Art, Tsutsugaki Textiles, really cool marbled paper made by Sufis, and a fascinating exhibition called "Women of Renown: Female Heroes and Villains in the Prints of Utagawa Kuniyoshi." According to information in the exhibit, the MFA has thousands of Japanese prints and is starting to digitize them; you can see some online.
Finally and very belatedly, papersky tells me that I am Bapchild. I have what is "thought by many to be one of the finest Village Halls in Kent"; a cricket club (with fantasy cricket!); and a spring named after St. Thomas a Becket. I was the site of the Synod of Baccanceld in 694, and am currently involved in a controversy over the construction of a Kent Science Park.
(And now to post this while the borrowed wireless connection has faded in rather than out, since our DSL went out last night and Verizon doesn't know why . . . )
Work prevented me from working on Boskone reports during the week, though I still fully intend to post them all, really! Part of that was preparing to argue two cases in Rochester on Tuesday morning, for which I'm driving out Monday; the weather looks like it might be lousy, so I am leaving myself plenty of time for the drive.
In other unpleasantness, my dentist is 99% sure that I need braces, the full-out metal-mouth kind. I'm sure that looking twelve will really contribute to my being taken seriously by judges. But, it's to treat chronic jaw problems (which causes constant pain, made worse by things like, oh, talking; the immiment cracking of my back teeth; and so forth), and in the long run it'll be worth it. As long as I don't lose any cases because the judges start laughing when I open my mouth.
Last night we went to Union's observatory for an open house. There was a fair bit of atmospheric turbulence, but we got to see Saturn and two of its moons, and even the separation between Saturn & its rings when the atmosphere steadied for a moment; the Orion Nebula; and some cool craters on the Moon. We'll have to do that again when it's warmer and the air's more likely to be still.
Today I did our taxes, or rather a first draft of our federal taxes. Since we appear to owe the federal government a small sum, thanks to Chad's self-employment tax on his blogging money, I've put them aside until the end of March—no point in paying them early (we're highly likely to owe the state too, based on past experience, and New York's tax forms are awful). Doing our taxes always startles me: it doesn't feel like we make that much, especially since we live in an area with a low cost of living, and I still have (future) money anxiety. My theory is unless you have so much money that you'll never have to work again, financial-security anxiety is a constant. Also, wow are we lucky.
Finally, tell me about your experiences with yoga. I've been meaning to try it for a while, since I need better posture, flexibility, and body-awareness for any number of reasons. This weekend I acquired 30 Essential Yoga Poses: For Beginning Students and Their Teachers, by Judith Lasater, which looks very suited to teaching one's self. (I'm reluctant to get a video because I'd like the option to work out in a room with a door: the dog tends to get excited by people on the floor.) The suggested exercise sets run about an hour, which I don't think I can do daily. Is it best to do more less often, or to do something each day? How much physical exertion do you find it? (Last night, I tried the most basic pose ever, the one that's basically just standing, and was astounded that it was an effort; I am so very out of shape.) Is a special mat really needed if you already have a basic foam one? What effects have you noticed from practicing yoga? What would you have liked to know before you started? Talk to me, people.
I think I can best give the flavor of my work week by describing dinner on Friday night, tapas at Cella Bistro, at which I deliberately ate deeply acid-reflux-unfriendly food, on the grounds that stress had regressed my acid reflux all the way back to late November, when I had two weekends full of unfriendly food, and so how much worse could it be?
And it was worth it. Our menu:
- Small balls of goat cheese, deep-fried until melty under a light crisp crust, and then drizzled with honey (so good);
- Shrimp in a sherry sauce (and then a lot of bread to scoop up the remaining sauce);
- Spanish tortilla with lemon-caper aioli (not what I was expecting, but good);
- Mussels with saffron sauce (I've decided I don't like mussels, saffron sauce or no);
- Clams meuniere (which I didn't have because I don't like clams either);
- Beef rib with BBQ sauce (that was all Chad).
(If you're keeping score: alcohol, tomatoes, and onions in the sauce for the shrimp; onions and citrus in the tortilla. If they'd had anything I wanted with garlic, chocolate, or mint, I could've run the table, as it were.)
Yesterday, I got quite sick when giving platelets; I appear to overreact to the calcium deficiency caused by the citrate anticoagulant (yes, I'd had a milkshake beforehand, taken my usual daily calcium supplement, and eaten a good breakfast). Unless plasma donation involves less of the anticoagulant, I'll have to stop donating, which I'd feel bad about, but I can't keep wrecking my own health for this (whole blood is no good either, it's just too high a proportion of my total volume).
After a nap and a cautious meal, we headed to our friendly local travel agent, and assigned him the task of finding us options for accommodations in each of our projected stops in Japan. Speaking of which: we're thinking of either Kanazawa or Takayama for the last few days; anyone have relevant experience to relate?
I didn't have to work this weekend!
Which happened to be particularly timely since I had a camera stuck down my throat yesterday to check on my acid reflux, which meant fasting and then being sedated, but even still, yay, not working this weekend!
(The endoscopy was fine. They got an IV started on the first try, which was a very welcome change from the last times I needed IVs, and I seem to come out of sedation a lot more easily than Chad does. Now my hips, on the other hand . . . )
Work earlier this week was kind of odd. Though I was behind my self-imposed schedule, which I did not like, I had this feeling of—clarity, balance, stillness inside my head, where there was nothing but the words that were coming out. (I don't think it was just the fatigue.) It was great and not quite like anything I usually feel. The trick is going to be still writing when I don't feel that way, since I can still be productive when I'm grinding out one sentence at a time. (Being behind schedule turned out not to be a problem, but I can't rely on that, either.)
In other work news, if anyone needs a hotel in Rochester, NY, I recommend the Strathallan. Quiet neighborhood, huge rooms, and an apparently-gourmet restaurant that I didn't eat in. (Well, okay, I had breakfast in it, but toast and cold cereal is not really a guide to the excellence of dinner.)
Finally, grrrrr, being spoiled for Trigun by an entrance post into a pan-fandom RPG. I suppose for many characters, there's no way to avoid major spoilers if they're being brought in post-canon, but still, grrr.
Oh well. Since I don't have to work tonight!, I'm going to curl up under a blanket and read The Mislaid Magician, which ought to more than make up for it.
Or, well, however long it's been since. In haste:
- Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood of Whose Line Is It Anyway?: very funny live, as funny as the funniest bits of any given Whose Line? show.
- Hip pain of long standing; finally started physical therapy for it; loosening of extremely tight muscles = owwww.
- My acid reflux really is triggered by chocolate. Woe.
- We're hosting Thanksgiving this year for the first time, for at least six and possibly as many as nine people. I keep thinking about that rather than
- Work, which is kicking my ass from here to next month. (I figure I should have about a day to collapse before Thanksgiving prep starts.) Hence unanswered colonialism comments and general reduced presence. Sorry.
Not a good week. Tuesday morning I became suddenly and thoroughly ill. Two ERs, one general practitioner, one allergic reaction to X-ray contrast dye, and two really impressive bruises from failed IVs later, I had not so much a diagnosis as a description: inflammation of the digestive system—maybe because of an infection, maybe because my body just doesn't like me. Maybe it was a one-time thing, maybe it will come back. Who knows? Not, apparently, the medical profession.
It only lasted for 24 hours and I'm feeling fine now; I don't know whether I'm still going to have to have more tests (because if inflammation was causing the symptoms, and I'm not having symptoms, is there any inflammation to be found?), but I'll find out next week when I talk to the GI specialists.
Did you know, by the way, that belladonna is prescribed for stomach cramps? I half think that seeing the name of a poison on the label scared my body into behaving.
Anyway, I was still exhausted for the rest of the week, as well as behind on work, so I skipped farthingparty, alas. This did mean that I went to the inaugural gala last night for Union College's new president: fancy food and very good fireworks, though I have to say that it would never have occured to me to use Bob Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone" as background music for a fireworks display. (And while The Who's "Baba O'Riley" was probably part of the company's standard package, all that "teenage wasteland" stuff was a bit unfortunate for a college event.)
Today, some work and lots of football. The Giants scored 17 points in the fourth quarter to send the game to overtime and then beat the Eagles on an improbable-looking Eli Manning 31-yard TD pass. The Patriots let the Jets score 17 unanswered points at the end of the game and had a field goal blocked with about a minute to go, but the Jets had no timeouts and Chad Pennington's Hail Mary attempt was intercepted by Tedy Bruschi, letting the Pats escape 24-17. The Giants looked awful early, the Patriots looked dubious late, but we'll take the wins regardless.
Reminder: take the Blogger SAT challenge before 11:59 ET on September 20 and see how you'd fare on the new SAT essay format. I just took it, and I'm going to concur with everyone who said it was harder than they expected—I am not at all sure I made the time limit, and what I did write was pretty lame. Go on, see if you can do better than someone who writes for a living!
In which Kate resorts to bullet points, because she's suddenly very tired:
- Got a temporary crown placed over a molar Thursday. Wow but that impression-taking goop is vile. My jaw still hasn't forgiven me for letting it be held wide open for an hour. The crown came loose yesterday morning (nightguard now doesn't fit by this much: ><); I'll have to squeeze out some time this week to have that looked at.
- My stomach is much better, though, except when I abuse it with dental work or going-away cake or eating too much good Indian food. Mmmmm, masala dosai bigger than my torso.
- Ascended my first NetHack character since January 2005 (I just haven't been playing):
Esme the Necromancer St:18/94 Dx:23 Co:18 In:22 Wi:22 Ch:18 Neutral Astral Plane $:0 HP:670(676) Pw:324(579) AC:-46 Exp:25 T:108692
No genocide, no polyself, lots of pets (though none survived but the Astral Plane Angel and a lone gremlin), otherwise a pretty typical Wizard ascension.
- Football season! Patriots weren't on TV here, but judging by the online play-by-play and the subsequent stories, they started ugly but came back well. 19-17 over the Bills on a sack for a safety.
- Art show yesterday in the Stockade, a historic area of Schenectady. Surprisingly extensive and with some interesting stuff, though nothing I liked enough to buy and find space for. Also discovered a new places that serves crêpes that we'll have to try sometime.
Busy week coming up: Wednesday-Thursday to Rochester for work; Friday-Sunday to Montreal for the Farthing party. Which means, among other things, that I have to read the final version of Farthing (duh) and think some more about the program item I'm on ("The Undefended Borders of SF. SF and fantasy have a clear border, one bristling with ray-guns and mind-shields, but there are other ways of sneaking up on the space between them. A discussion of some of the books and stories that do this."). After I get some sleep.
I came to the sudden resolve this weekend to finish cataloging our books, already. Have I mentioned how much I love my $14 bar code scanner from eBay? I catalogued 1427 books this weekend, which I'm ballparking at 200 books/hour.
LibraryThing now contains every distinct book in our house, except two books completely in Japanese that Chad was given as a gift and the cookbooks, because I don't really care about them: 2,087. (That's not the full total owned, as we each have a handful of books in our respective offices, and there are some duplicates that need good homes that I will enter later, now that I don't have to fear getting them mixed up.) I've exported the data to my Palm and resolved that no book entering our house may get past my computer without being catalogued.
I'm pretty sure I got all my read books tagged, though obviously sorting out the unread books will take a lot longer. It's vaguely depressing that I've read less than half our books, even with a substantial number of books that I either have no intention of reading or am vastly unlikely to read. Gotta get moving on that!
Notes to self: (1) When suffering from heartburn, do not sit on the floor for a couple of hours and bend over your work. It does really bad things to your stomach that last quite a while. (2) You still have an oral allergy to raw apples, and even though brie and apple paninis are delicious, they aren't worth the itching, the paranoia, and the stomach problems.
I'm really behind on writing LJ and booklog posts, as I spent most evenings this week proofreading stuff for Chad's tenure box. If I can sleep tonight, I'll start tackling the backlog tomorrow.
Annual cookout yesterday. It started out very well (though if I'd realized that Chad was trying to convince one of the kids that werewolves are allergic to Nerf, I would've intervened), but a couple hours in my vision started going wonky. I took my contacts out, but I knew even as I did so that it was futile: sure enough, it was a migraine. My standard response is Excedrin [*], but that has acetaminophen and I'd had a glass of wine earlier; probably I was being overly paranoid, but I really like having a functioning liver. So I quietly went upstairs and laid down. It actually passed quicker than I expected, but not enough for me to go back to the party, which was too bad because I was having fun.
[*] My migraines are extremely mild on the absolute scale of migraines, and don't show up that often. Excedrin knocks out the pain almost completely, though I'm not crazy about the side effects. I took a couple ibuprofen last night, though I have no reason to believe they did anything.
Today I had an appointment to give platelets at 9, for the first time since October. It didn't happen, but at least it wasn't my fault this time. ( cut for those who dislike needles )
But at least I got to see half an hour of Ocean's Eleven, which I could re-watch very often indeed. After I got home, caught up on the Internet (our DSL had been out since Friday night), and ate, I finished re-watching the movie (well, I fast-forwarded all the Tess scenes). I just love the groove of the dialogue, especially between Danny and Rusty. I wish the plot of the second hadn't been so bad that it wiped my memory of whether its dialogue was as good.
- Conclusions from the "Erie Canal" poll: people who know the song out-number those who don't 2 to 1. The vast majority know the variant I'm familiar with, which is not about gin. As I suspected, New York was the big leader for those who learned it in school (though not everyone who went to school in New York learned it), but there was a respectable geographical scattering
Also, though I knew this already: ticking off boxes is fun.
- In related news, rachelmanija has a general poll on folk music familiarity and a follow-up post.
- I've just finished buying all seven seasons of Homicide on DVD for $20 a season (though only the set of seasons 1-2 has arrived so far). homicidereruns, here I come (when things settle down some). Also, if anyone wants to know how to get the DVDs cheaply, give a yell.
- papersky has a thoughtful post about lies springing off the whole MsScribe affair.
Finally, a request for advice. I have a few very small scrapes and dents on my car, at least one of which is fully three years old. I noticed this week that the paint around these is flaking and rust seems to showing. I blame the miserable weather we've been having basically all year, but whatever. The question is, is there anything I myself can do to stop the damage from getting worse, or is this a job for professionals?
This is not the Lord of the Rings post you're looking for. Wednesday night and Thursday I was feeling unwell and plowing through half-a-dozen Sector General books as a result; Friday I was reading an advance copy of Dzur; yesterday I was shopping, writing those booklog posts, having dinner out, and watching anime; and today I was visiting Chad's family.
(It won't be tomorrow, either; we're going to see Bruce Springsteen. Any anti-rain rituals you'd care to direct at Saratoga would be welcome: lawn tickets.)
Fashion follow-up: I removed the sash from that dress and bought a necklace, a single pearl on a gold chain (thanks, Mom). I will see about pictures at the wedding.
* * * *
In other news, Chad is participating in a charity fundraiser to fund equipment for science classrooms. He's posting dog pictures in his reminders; since he's already grabbed that idea, all I can offer is the very LJ reward of icons. Specifically, I'll:
- Make an icon. You can get an idea of fandoms and style by looking at my userpics and my public-use icons, but ask if you have something else in mind; I can screencap or find sources for a lot more than what's there.
[ETA: I should note that I don't know how to make animated icons, though I could try and learn for this if you have your heart set on one.]
- Modify one of my existing icons; or
- Give exclusive rights to one of the existing icons (obviously I can't stop anyone who's already snagged it from using it, but I'll take it out of the public-use gallery).
Anyone who donates through Chad's post and would like an icon should forward the DonorChoose acknowledgment e-mail to kate_nepveu at livejournal.com with details about the request.
Dinner and cleanup and so forth took a very long time, so I'm afraid chapter one of Fellowship will have to wait yet again.
Spent two weeks with a cold. It was actually a relief to realize that I very likely caught it from Mom over Mother's Day weekend, because that meant it wasn't a flare-up or relapse of the sinus problems I'd had earlier. Other than that, not much fun: decongestants stopped working one or two colds ago, so I had pretty much a constant sinus headache and went through several boxes of Kleenex. At least the congestion stayed loose and I mostly avoided coughing.
Chad's parents and sister came up for dinner one night, which was great. We also had Chad's upper-level class and advisees over for dinner on Memorial Day, which is entertaining in the kind of way that makes my introvert self hide after a while (fortunately, dusk and the accompanying bugs were a reasonable excuse, not that any of them noticed my not coming back out of the house after a whiel). I'd had the day off and used it to cook: two batches of chocolate chip cookies, one batch of mac & cheese (so that the vegetarian would have something filling to eat). I was hoping for leftovers, since I didn't think baked food would be that popular on a hot day, but it was like locusts descending. College students; I should've known better.
Besides what's been already mentioned here, it's pretty much been work, a fair bit of it as I finished something short-fused. Between that, my cold, the weather, stressful LJ discussions, and, I don't know, the position of Saturn and the spatial arrangement of my office furniture, I've been feeling vaguely cranky. However, I'm cheerful about the LotR re-read project, and have hopes that this will carry over to a generally less-cranky attitude.
So, wedding July 4th weekend. Bought a new dress today, which I love. (Admittedly I'm biased because it fits astonishingly well (with the minor exception of the straps being a touch long, which I can easily fix; yes, that's why the torso is bunching a little in the pictures) and it wasn't that expensive (the shoes cost more)). However, it was the only one left on the rack, and it comes with this long sash thing that I can't quite tell what to do with. Therefore, behind the cut, I give you pictures and a poll:
[Edit: the dress is dark brown with cream, not black and white. Apparently I should've played with the color balance before posting the pictures.]
Oh, and while I'm at it: single short string of fake pearls good for a necklace? Or something else?
Bought a new sweater set this week, was pleased, wore it the next day—and then was cross because it reeked of something nasty that gave me a headache, that I hadn't noticed in the store. I figured it was just department store smell, so I washed it today. Twice, even, and it still smells exactly the same. It's a silk, cotton, and rayon blend, and Google tells me that sometimes silk has a distinct smell, but none of the suggestions for removing it seem to be very certain. Anyone have experience with this? I like it, and I doubt I can return it now that I've washed it (twice), but I cannot live with that smell.