kyrielle: A photo of kyrielle, in profile, turned slightly toward the viewer (Default)
Sunday, July 5th, 2015 06:32 pm
GOOD weekend. Yesterday was awesome - we went to Canby, enjoyed the street fair and the parade and the music. The kids loved a parade with candy tossed, but for my money the most pure joy was on the playground. Then fireworks, which I got some really good shots of - on my digital camera. (The phone couldn't have done it. Which is a pity - if they'd have been on the phone, I'd have downloaded all the pictures from IT to the computer last night...well, see next paragraph.)

This morning, my iPhone died. Not completely, but interestingly - some kind of software issue where it decided that all space was used up despite the fact that nothing it could point to was using very much space. About 90 GB of space unaccounted for. Delete anything and the bug expanded to fill the space.

Restarting and other cleanup mechanisms didn't work, so after a 2.5-hour wait, the experts restored it to a factory default. And...that means I lost all the photos of Ian giggling happily on that spinny swing except for _one_ I shared on FB. Worst part is it wasn't the best one, which I found later in the sequence. Oh, well. My backup of photos and other stuff is otherwise recent and complete, and I have a photo and a LOVELY memory. We had so much fun, the two of us, at that swing. ***EDIT: Oh God I forgot!! When I found the better pictures I _put the best of them as a comment to the post with the first picture_, I just found that and a couple other pictures from that day. They're not lost!!***

Now to reinstall and reconfigure my phone. Pfeh, but I saw this coming and made notes of what I had where. (Also, anyone who texted me today before 5 pm, it was lost. My phone would accept it - but couldn't store it. As far as I know, that means one text from Scott and a couple about my appointment from Apple. Those weren't important anyway, since I was basically camped in their store.)

(Yes, I have a backup. But it's not super-recent and I adjusted things and added a bunch of apps in the meanwhile. And if it was super-recent, I'd worry it might have backed up the bug what did this, too. Aie.)

ANYWAY. Photos!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/kyrielle/sets/72157655490778181

One preview - but seriously, guys, check out the set, please. )
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Friday, June 26th, 2015 06:10 pm
(Sorry for those of you who already saw this on Facebook.)

They are just across the street from the school where Drew has summer camp. There are two summer camp groups there that I know of, the YMCA and the Club K.

Today, the Buddhist temple had a big event (yesterday too, except it did not have as big an impact as it did today). Their parking lot filled up and they directed overflow parking to the school. I hope with permission, but I really have no idea. I got what looked to be a parking space that had recently been vacated in the front, just as I was hyperventilating about being able to park at all, because _EVERYTHING_ I could see was parked up - not just the parking spaces, including the handicapped spots, but also the no-parking drop-off zone in front of the school.

When we left, they had parked up the curbs around the central turning area and even the right turn lane almost to the exit from the driveway.

More details and blathering and what I emailed and so on )

I have resisted creating one-time-use tags of "common courtesy isn't" and "a little kindness please?" and "how about being mindful of others?" and so on. :P

And of course, the more-than-90-degree heat (and the fact that I have to hike to a back side door, which is NOT related to the parking situation and is normal for pickup here, it's just a longish walk when it's hot) didn't help my reaction. :P
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Thursday, June 25th, 2015 06:58 pm
http://www.weather.com/weather/tenday/l/97070:4:US

Short form: the lowest low in the bunch is 59 degrees farenheit.

The lowest high is 91 and the highest high is 101...which is in there twice, this Saturday and next.

At least if the forecast holds, next Saturday (the Fourth of July!) will have no chance of rain. If it manages to be 101 degrees and pouring rain, I will be a Very Grumpy Laura. Just saying.
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Sunday, June 21st, 2015 06:56 pm
So far, I can have wheat but not too much wheat, things flavored with garlic/onion (but probably not too much garlic/onion - have no desire to try something with whole roasted cloves!), and apparently one apple is fine. Honestly, I really appreciate this. Small to medium amounts of sugar/candy/honey appear okay too.

Potato chips are fine: not surprising, since all the ingredients are fine. But corn chips are NOT fine, and so I'm being cautious about corn. I do need to reintroduce it some time, but...caution.

Tonight, I had spaghetti (regular spaghetti!) with sauce (regular sauce!) and a small slice of raspberry pie. That's pushing it on the wheat, but I think it'll be okay.

This afternoon, we went to Mod Pizza, and I got a salad, which actually was quite tasty and didn't have _anything_ I can't freely have, so no worries on that front.

...I'm fairly pleased, actually.
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Sunday, June 21st, 2015 07:42 am
...to all the fathers out there, and everyone who has a father they love. And gentle wishes for a good day to all those wanting to be fathers and not yet there, and all those missing their fathers.

Drew heard about breakfast-in-bed for Mother's Day (after Mother's Day) and declared his intent to do breakfast-in-bed for Scott on Father's Day. I got the stuff set up, including hot pan and oil, and brought him the eggs. He cracked the eggs, scrambled the eggs, spiced the eggs. I poured them in the pan, he stirred them in the pan. I lifted the pan, he scraped the eggs out on to the plate.

Ian put the toast in the toaster oven and turned it on (with me watching him). He could have buttered it but backed out, so I did that. We also put some of the pineapple (that Ian picked out at the grocery store because he wanted pineapple, not with Father's Day in mind) on the plate, so. :)

Scott asked us to take the breakfast back out to the kitchen so he could eat there, but still, he was brought breakfast in bed. I think it was pretty cool. And Scott liked his juice. (It was blue raspberry juice...lol.)
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Saturday, June 20th, 2015 05:47 pm
So, Ian's hair blew into his face at the farmer's market on Thursday. He complained. I said long hair does that. He said he wanted short hair.

Lots of confirmation later, he really wanted his hair cut and understood he'd have to wait for it to grow back if he didn't like it, so today we got his hair cut. He didn't like the process, but he loved the results. Drew asked him what he'd do when it got long again and he said he'd get it cut again.

It's so weird to see his face framed by that hair instead of longer, curlier hair, though. I'll get used to it, but right now, so weird.
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Sunday, June 14th, 2015 09:30 am
Things that didn't used to matter when I worked my four-day week-of-doom (because I had Fridays off), but do matter now:
  • The vet my cats go to, here in town, to has full Saturday hours. Which reminds me, I need to schedule appointments for the critters. They will not appreciate it.
  • The dentist we see is here in town. And has occasional Saturdays, but I'm not sure how much I need to depend on that.
  • Our doctors are 15 minutes away, but no freeway/rush hour traffic need be involved unless the weather is bad. We have EXCELLENT doctors, so I am not likely to change this.
  • The eye doctor we see, who is perfectly fine, is 10.5 miles away but it all involves roads that can get ugly at rush hour. They are open only weekdays, except "some Saturdays" (call and ask) and the latest they are open is 6 pm on Monday - the rest of the week it is earlier. Meanwhile, there is what seems to be a perfectly good eye place here in town, which is open until 7:30 on Tuesdays and has regular Saturday hours. ...I need to change eye doctors for us, yes I do.
  • The affordable/easy store probably isn't, unless I ask Scott to go. They used to be right on my way home; they are now an 11 mile drive away. But they aren't too far from Scott's office, so when he's in the office I may ask him to stop on the way home. Some days. (Scott doesn't like grocery shopping, so this is an imposition, though.)
  • The Washington County library system has been my preferred library, both because picking up holds was easier (three days a week I drove past my "home" library in that system, Tigard, when they were open - they're not open Thursdays - whereas Friday was the only day I could go to Wilsonville's library without sorting out kiddos), and because they have a slightly better book selection system-wide, in my experience. Now, Wilsonville and Clackamas County is, because the Tigard library is holy whoa out of my way.


...yeah. Reorganizing my life around being extremely local, and having five days a week of job. On the whole I like it, it just needs some adjustments to fully make it work. The library adjustment I knew was coming; I didn't know about the local eye care place and how good it was relative to my schedule until I started hunting during a recent eye health crisis (when I luckily turned out not to need it, and may I never have a stye/infection on the inside of my lid again, because ugh). I didn't know the vet had Saturday hours because I never _needed_ to know, but it was right there waiting for me on their web site when I looked.

And hey, I get a Thursday farmer's market that I can actually get to. Which is nice, because suddenly driving to the Tigard farmer's market or Lake Oswego's looks like an even bigger pain. (Although LO is a good weekend option, but on Saturday, it's pretty close after the Thursday market. Tigard is on Sunday. Both of those are really good markets, IMO, but ... they require more driving!)

This week, I made two trips that I expect to be atypical - I drove up to Tigard to Home Depot and the Farmer's Market on Sunday, and I drove to downtown Portland for a company event on ... I think it was Wednesday? Maybe it was Tuesday. Some day. And I only walked to work one day this week, Friday.

Even with that, my mileage for the week is under half my former _commute_ mileage (not including side trips or Friday errands). This is really sweet. Of course, this week Drew starts summer camp, which is further away. My route to pick up Drew-then-Ian-then-home is just under 15 miles per day, though - so 75 miles a week for that. Add another 5 miles once a week for the farmer's market. Add 2 or 4 miles per day I drive to work (depending on whether I come home for lunch). 100 miles is sort of the worst-case for all of this, before any attempt to add in errands such as grocery shopping. My former commute mileage, for 4 days a week only, was 200 miles a week. And during the school year, the whole loop from home to Drew to Ian to home is 5.5 miles (instead of 15 miles), and in fact next summer the same will obtain.

(We are switching child care for Drew next school year and summer from the YMCA to Club K, so he can stay in the school and go to after-school activities and such. Drew loves the YMCA, and so do we, but he's willing to try it because he also hears good things about Club K. And one of their summer camp locations IS Drew's school, so that will simplify a lot. Also, his school is close to the farmer's market, so the full round trip hit for the farmer's market won't happen in that case. This switch was already planned for the after-school activities, before I changed jobs, so.)

Reorganizing my life to be incredibly local and allow for my schedule turns out to be, on balance, fairly easy. And really rewarding.
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Saturday, June 13th, 2015 08:00 am
I miss my free Fridays. But I'm enjoying picking the kids up at the end of the day, sometimes stopping at the park before we come home. And yesterday I walked to and from work. (So why was yesterday the only day so far this month that I FORGOT to take my antihistamine in the morning? lol)

I'm not in the best of shape, IMO, but a mile walk is still very doable and I feel good about having done it. Plus, a commute by foot is a win for the environment.

Thursday, I drove in a little early and was able to leave a little early (although not by as much as I arrived, because heads-down work distracted me, heh) and get to the farmer's market and still pick the boys up on time and head to the park. So very awesome all around.

This morning, I looked at myself in the mirror and realized that, in spite of my not getting any more sleep, the dark circles under my eyes are missing.
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Friday, May 29th, 2015 06:37 pm
My first week at my new job was EXCELLENT from a work perspective. I feel like I'm getting the hang of this, and I really like the team.

My first week at the new job was not so excellent from a health POV. I managed not to take any time off work, but I did go to urgent care tonight. I have: probable viral pink eye (not a surprise, I expected that), a stye on the INSIDE of my eyelid (no wonder it hurts so much, and also wtf?), probable start of a sinus infection (symptoms started yesterday), probable strep throat (symptoms started this morning - probable because the full culture wouldn't be back until Monday, so he'd prescribe antibiotics regardless of the quick-test results, so he didn't see the point in doing the test).

Really, universe?
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Sunday, May 24th, 2015 09:50 am
Drew is feeling better this morning and no fever at all.

Yesterday, while Scott watched the boys, I did some needed basic shopping and went to the Japanese Garden. Alas, I didn't make sure I had the memory card for my camera with me (AUGH!). I got some pretty good photos with my phone, though. Wish I could have tried the same photos with the camera.

I am done with the Ridiculous Week of Sous Vide cooking. We have lots of stuff prepped and frozen for future thaw/heat/sear/serve cycles. I am happy about that. Also happy about the results I'm getting in general.

I think I may have to cave and buy a Wii U. Our Wii is starting to have problems reading its discs...any discs. I was tempted when it first came out, but there's not a lot "extra" that I wanted...however, working? That's an EXCELLENT additional feature. :P

Way before I worry about that, I need to plan the meal sequence for the week, and also swing by the library and return the videos. Late fees for videos are nothing to laugh at. :P
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Thursday, May 21st, 2015 11:15 am
I was going to have a nice long 5.5-day weekend after leaving just before noon Wednesday. That was my plan.

Drew ended up being home sick yesterday and today (so far: probably tomorrow as well) with a fever and a sore throat. Scott stayed with him until I got home from my last day on Wednesday. It does appear to be just an annoying cold - the rapid strep test was negative - but still, it's not quite the leisurely "wander about the Portland metro enjoying some of your favorite spots" I'd planned on. Instead I'm taking care of the house while I let him veg out to videos and relax. (I do have his homework, and he'll need to work on that in a bit, but I wanted to let the ibuprofen take effect and get some lunch in him, first.)

Still feels weird to not work there any more, but I'm very much looking forward to starting my new job on Tuesday.
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Sunday, May 17th, 2015 08:50 am
After seeing several very positive posts from [personal profile] synecdochic about sous vide and the Anova Precision Cooker, I decided to get one and try it.

I'm terrible at steaks. Seriously, oven-baking them is the only way I don't destroy them to the point you can't eat them. I've set the smoke alarm off. It's ridiculous.

Sous vide and sear? I can do that, and my first attempt produced the best steak I've ever cooked...and it was edible. So, there's that. Now trying it with a lesser cut and seeing if the long-cook-time means tender works for us.

So, easily amused Laura is easily amused. Also enjoying the chance to eat good steak without having to go to a steakhouse. Since I'm still eating mostly low-FODMAP with some experiments to see where I don't have to, it's nice to know what the seasonings are. (Low-FODMAP means, among other things, no onion or garlic flesh. Restaurants probably do use those in a lot of cases.)
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Sunday, May 10th, 2015 06:40 pm
Today was a pretty good Mother's Day, overall. I got a sweet booklet Drew made at school about things he likes to do with me / things I like / things he likes about me, and if it was prompted, the answers were pure Drew. (What do I like to do with him? Clean! And it shows a picture of him scrubbing the floor of the bathroom and grinning. Actually, I did like that - I just had to squeeze the water out of the mop for him, as he's not strong enough for the lever mechanism yet.) I got a heart card that Ian made with fingerprints all over it (day care supplied the heart card and wrote his name, he supplied the fingerprints). And a couple chunks of Lush soap. Yay. :)

This weekend is also when we learned the boys' level placements for next session of swim lessons. Ian was still water safety 2 - no surprise. We can get him in the pool, but we can't make him want to do it or make more than a half-hearted effort, and he really doesn't like it any more. Drew got our choice - water safety 3 one more time or stroke 1. He has all the skills but a little more practice wouldn't hurt, they say. He's bored. to. tears. And has been for at least a whole session, maybe more. A little more practice would hurt!

Talked to the boys. The upshot is that Ian is quitting swimming lessons for now (because doing ridiculous registration, paying over $200 for three months, and coaxing and badgering kiddo to the pool so he can fail to learn are not fun). Drew also got a choice (because the requirement was about safety, and he's out of the safety levels - but if he quits swim lessons, he loses his chance at open swim too). Drew elected to keep taking lessons. I let him pick which level, and he picked stroke 1 - no surprise there. Last session, there was a stroke 1 class at the same time and sometimes they only had one student. Drew got to shift up several times and even though he was working above his level and below theirs, he LOVED it. I think he made the right choice.

We'll wait the summer out, but if my new job settles in well into our life routines, I think I may ask Ian if he wants to try gymnastics. (Maybe martial arts, but gymnastics seems likely to suit him better.) Since that's not a safety issue and he is not a lazy pants and gets plenty of exercise left to his own devices, this would be purely a "do you want?" and not a "you must pick something" situation. Although, oh God, now I'm envisioning him taking those skills and using them at day care, and the conversations we'd get to have....
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Sunday, April 5th, 2015 07:20 pm
Went to Easter dinner at Uncle John & Aunt Julia's. I'm on call for work, as a back-up, but they have good wifi and aren't too far away, so I figured no big deal. I was right - especially since I didn't get called at all. Yay for not being needed right then! :)

It was a lovely meal, and the fruit and dip I brought got positive comments. (Mostly the dip: it was basic, but I served it in hollowed-out pineapples. I found that on the internet, which is why I had to bring fruit and dip, because seriously that's awesome.) There was a bunny race (of little pull-back-and-they-run bunny cars) and the boys got to run around and play (MOSTLY in approved ways, Ian had a couple moments where he was a bit too wild and got picked up by a parent to calm down).

The food was lovely, the company was more-so, and the weather was glorious - cloudy but bright, dry, and cool but not cold. After we finished dinner and the games and were about to clean up, the clouds grew more ominous, so the deck was cleared first. 15 minutes later it was raining and shortly after it was storming, with pouring rain.

So, a lovely Easter; the forecast weather held off until it was a welcome glory to watch, rather than something to be overcome.
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Sunday, April 5th, 2015 12:00 pm
Just that. It's a lovely, sunny day with flowers out.

My kids are gleeful over their Easter baskets, and so am I, since I arranged for them to contain only a little candy and a lot of active or semi-active toys like frisbees and table tennis sets. :)
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Friday, March 13th, 2015 06:52 pm
I heard about The Martian a while back. I finally got around to getting a copy. Oh my word. Why did I not listen to others and read this book sooner???

The one wise thing I did was start reading as soon as I got it, while the couch was being professionally cleaned this afternoon.

Because if I'd picked it up about now, I'd have been up half the night finishing it. There's no WAY I'd have put it down in the middle.
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Sunday, February 8th, 2015 02:35 pm
These are of a gorgeous sunrise last month.

Over here on Flickr

No preview - but go have a look, if you like. I'm quite pleased with them. It was a very obligingly lovely sunrise.
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Saturday, January 17th, 2015 03:17 pm
Yesterday, I turned 40. Scott helped me celebrate by not telling our friends (who were over for our usual gaming night), keeping it low key, and getting me the DSLR I've been coveting for over a year.

I took it to the Japanese Garden yesterday (he gave it to me a bit in advance) and shot some photos with both the standard and telephoto lenses. Mother Nature gave me the only sun-break forecast for this weekend in the afternoon, meaning the telephoto lens was *useful* (for more than pictures of cloud and fog).

I was totally lazy and uploaded the JPG images exactly as they came out of the camera instead of processing the raw files and all that.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/kyrielle/archives/date-taken/2015/01/16/

Two preview images, my favorite two )
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Monday, September 8th, 2014 07:06 pm
I declare victory. Scott, I, and Ian all liked tonight's chicken taco soup. (Drew didn't, but he tried it, so.) So I record it and shared it.

1 can low sodium pinto beans, drained and rinsed.
1 can low sodium kidney beans, drained and rinsed.
1/4 cup McCormick original taco seasoning.
1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks.
1 can creamed corn.
2-3 cups water.

If preparing ahead of time, take everything but the water, seal inside a gallon freezer bag appropriately labeled, and freeze.

Thaw overnight, and drop in the crockpot - adding the water. Cook on low for ten hours. (May be done sooner - we were gone for long enough that it needed to be ten hours.)

If you're not freezing it, it probably won't need to cook as long and/or you could cook on high, but otherwise I assume about the same results/steps.

You may want to add a bit of salt - it's on the light side for salt, though I found it quite tasty.