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1. Finished arranging transcripts for TC3. (One has not actually been sent yet, because the college in question is operating on an approximately two-week delay, but they have received both the request and the authorization and I should get an email when the thing finally ships.)

2. Photographed my plants and made my weekly post about them. Also added another batch of crushed eggshells to their soil.

3. Made weekly Facebook update.

4. Watered my houseplants.

more items under the cut )

28. TOOK A NAP.

29. Made weekly Facebook update.

30. Finished first mini-ficlet prompt meme fill! \o/

And hopefully I will remember to make these record-keeping posts a little more frequently from now on, because that was kind of ridiculous. *wry*
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1. Texted Upstairs Neighbor E about leaving her family's seltzer cans in a box outside my door so I don't have to fish through the gross communal recycling bins to collect them. (Her family is not interested in returning them for the bottle deposits. I am.) She said yes, so I have put out a box.

2. Finished one transcript request for my application to TC3. Another one is in progress -- I just need to print, sign, and either fax or mail a document, which I intend to do on Tuesday (taking shameless advantage of the rental company's printer, and possibly also their fax machine). The third transcript request must be done via telephone, so that's a project for Monday.

3. Boiled four eggs.

4. Poked around the Not the IRS continuing education/re-certification website and signed up for an online course. No live in-person events seem to be scheduled for my area yet, but I will keep checking back periodically. (Hopefully district management will also send out an email about that by the end of July.)

5. Washed laundry. Dried laundry. Folded laundry. Put away laundry. Hung other laundry up to air-dry overnight. Laundry is serious business!

6. Changed linens.

7. Made a weekly to-do list and taped it to the wall over my computer, which is another new scheduling hack I am trying in addition to my daily to-do lists.

...

I am considering going to bed very early tonight. I am also considering making a bag of microwave popcorn (courtesy of a former tenant who has yet to cancel their mail-order snack service a month and a half after moving out) and watching Moana on Netflix. I am not yet sure which option will win.
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1. Took weekly Monday photographs of my vegetables, but forgot to post them online. Ah well. I will do a two-weeks-in-one post this coming Monday.

2. Walked to the Cayuga St. bridge to watch my town's fireworks display at 9:45pm Monday night. (Ithaca usually does fireworks a day or two before the 4th. I am not sure when or why that offset started, but at this point it's a tradition and continues through sheer inertia.)

3. Wrote four fic DVD commentaries. :)

more items under the cut )

21. Applied to TC3! (I mean, I fudged some dates because I don't remember the exact end dates of my association with my high school and previous colleges. I can tell you month and year, sure! But exact day? Pfff, no. I assume they will understand and cut me slack on that front.) Tomorrow I will start arranging for transcripts. I believe I can do that online for the two colleges. For my high school, I think I have to make a phone call, so that will wait for Monday.

22. Emailed Vicky about some super-secret plans we may or may not be conspiring over. ;)

And that is that!

For the record? My productivity was wildly uneven this week. Points 1 through 8 took four days (Monday-Thursday), whereas points 9-22 were all done in a single day (Friday). This is because I knocked my sleep schedule completely out of whack and did not manage to yank it back on track for several days, during which I kind of zombied around doing nothing in particular. I can't even say I was relaxing and enjoying myself; I was mostly just going through the motions and hoping some spark of emotion/inspiration would light me up.

I really need to stop letting my sleep schedule drift. That is utterly devastating to my ability to be a functional person.
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Wow, I kind of forgot to make one of these posts for a while, didn't I? I knocked my sleep schedule out of whack midway through and got stuck in a rut where I am a little too brain-fried to be productive and instead spend hours surfing the internet and not getting to bed early enough to fix the sleep debt problem. But I think I may finally have started wrenching myself back into a more useful schedule as of last night. *crosses fingers*

Anyway, stuff!

1. Took my weekly vegetable photos and posted them. Also applied some MiracleGro.

2. Made my weekly Facebook update post.

3. Finished reading Marie Brennan's Within the Sanctuary of Wings (which I enjoyed a lot -- I really do think the Memoirs of Lady Trent series gets better as it goes on, and I'm sad to see it finished) and returned it to the library.

more items under the cut )

15. Finally pinned down a meeting time with the DRE to talk about Youth Group activities this summer and in the 2017-18 year. Unfortunately, because we kept getting distracted and I will be gone for a while, the meeting isn't until July 2, but hey, at least we now have a time and date.

16. Took my trash bin to the curb for pickup.

17. Took recycling bins to the curb for pickup.

And that is that.
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1. Started making paper fruit for a new counter display at the rental office -- by which I mean I chose line art from online, copypasted it into Word documents (and resized and tweaked until I had about six iterations per page), and printed it out on colored paper. Miss Cactus already started cutting some of them out and adding detail with thin-point Sharpie pens. I am not sure whether I will arrive on Tuesday to a finished display, or whether I will get to do some cutting and coloring myself during any slow periods.

2. Acquired a new houseplant. See, a tenant couldn't bring the plant with them to their new apartment, but felt bad throwing a living thing away, so they brought it to the office and asked if we wanted it. I said yes. I then transplanted it from the dinky plastic store pot into the slightly larger ceramic pot the tenant had been using purely as decoration because apparently transplanting is hard. *sigh* Anyway, hopefully I will manage not to kill it.

3. Put three nails into one side of my oldest bookcase, to hold parts of my paperclip collection. (Context: I string paperclips in chains of ten onto keyrings, 25 chains per ring, and then hang them up for display. All the paperclips must be 'found' items -- I can't purposely buy them -- which is why it has taken me literally twenty years to collect a thousand paperclips. Well. A thousand and three, as of Saturday.)

more items under the cut )

18. Called Vicky and caught up for an hour or so. :)

19. Chopped onions, summer squash, and a large bell pepper and made a batch of veggie sidedish. Tomorrow I intend to bake some chicken.

All in all, I think it was a fairly productive weekend.
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1. Attended church, which was a special service with sermon and music by Samite Mulondo, the founder of Musicians for World Harmony.

2. Coffee hour cleanup.

3. Made my weekly Facebook update post.

4. Changed linens. Given the weather, I decided NOT to do the winter-to-summer swap. (I want spring back!)

more items under the cut )

18. I seem to have forgotten to mention this in my last few 'stuff done' posts, perhaps because it hasn't been on any of my to-do lists? Well, anyway, I have been reading (in bits and pieces, between other things) the Memoirs of Lady Trent series. I ended up starting with book two, The Tropic of Serpents, because I had to order book one via interlibrary loan and I am impatient. I then moved right on to book three, The Voyage of the Basilisk, which I just finished tonight.

They are fun books! I wouldn't call them deep literature, but they are a pleasure to read -- both in terms of the characters and plots, in terms of the worldbuilding (which is genuine world-building rather than region-building, and thought-out to a degree more writers should aspire to), and in terms of the actual writing, which manages to be smoothly invisible in service of the story despite having a distinctive first-person narrative voice. That is a neat trick, and I wish I could pinpoint how Brennan pulls it off.

Anyway, I have jumped back to start book one, A Natural History of Dragons, and I expect I'll make some reasonable progress on that during slow periods at work tomorrow. :)
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1. I had an appointment to give blood today, but alas, I was temporarily deferred.

The Red Cross won't take your blood unless you have a hemoglobin level of 12.5g/dL (which I think is grams per deciliter?), and today my hemoglobin was at about 11.9. *sigh* Apparently the normal hemoglobin range for women is 12.1-15.1, so I am actually slightly medically anemic at the moment, though not seriously so.

This has happened to me before, and was one of the reasons I stopped donating blood for many years. It has never had any noticeable effect on my actual energy level or health, and in fact can be easily countered by eating a roast beef sandwich (preferably with spinach instead of lettuce) at lunch for at least three days running before a donation appointment.

Unfortunately, I only scheduled this appointment two days ago, so I didn't have time to do the sandwich trick. *deeper sigh*

I'll try again in a few weeks.

---------------

2. In other news, I did pass my first college class, though not with a particularly good final grade. Ah well. I did learn a lot -- both the actual course material, and more practical things like what I need to do to get course readings done on time, and how to participate in online discussions. My next class will go better. *resolve face*

And on that note... my next class has, in fact, already started! It's divided into six modules. Module one was the intro week, which is finished. Module two lasts three weeks: the first is mostly for reading, and the latter two are for discussion and a project. I've been doing the reading at the public library once again (and also at the grocery store and on the bus to and from Not the IRS) since that worked well for the previous class.

The class topic is the history and culture of Pacific Asia. I am not wildly enamored of the main textbook -- it's seventeen years old, which is okay for history but kind of worrying in cultural studies, especially cultural studies with a contemporary slant -- but I'm trying to treat it as a historical document. We will also have to read a novel (from an approved list of five choices) and watch a film (possibly of our own choice, though there is also a list of suggestions) for various future modules. I decided not to purchase any of the novels, since three of them are readily available through interlibrary loan and really, why spend the money when I don't have to?

---------------

3. I did finish the preliminary edits on the Jade/Dave/Terezi crossdressing porn story (tentatively titled "The Law of Conservation of Mangrit," for lack of any better ideas) and have sent it to a kind volunteer for beta. Hopefully I'll have it back, tidied up, and posted within... oh, let's say two weeks.

In the meantime, I should probably work on some other things. *ponders WIP backlog*
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I wrote and submitted the fourth and last essay of my economic history class today. (By which I mean Wednesday. It is still Wednesday until I go to bed.) Tomorrow or Friday I need to submit my "learning journal," which is basically a written collection of stuff I thought about during the course; it's part of the participation score. And then I will be done.

I find it amusing that out of four essay topics, I spent one essentially saying, "Your topic question is badly ambiguous, so I will start by defining how I use the two terms under discussion and go from there," and another saying, "A single event that dominated a country's economic history for eighty years? I don't think that's how history and economics work, so I will talk about a policy instead." (The former got me a really good score, incidentally. We shall see about the latter.)

Registration is now open for the March term. I need to look through the course catalog in an organized fashion and pick something to spend my next four months on. Because you know what? Learning is pretty fun.

-----

On a random note, I have enjoyed one of my current textbooks (The Age of Extremes) so much that I borrowed three other books by the same historian (Eric Hobsbawm) from my dad, who had them around in the basement. I'm not sure if he had them as background reference material for when he taught British history at Drew back before I was born, if he had them as background reference material for the social conditions in which the history of science and technology occurred, or if he had them just because they're a good collective general history of the long 19th century, a concept Hobsbawm seems to have originated.

So that's something I'm going to be reading in the near future. :-)
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Today was going to be a day of looking through the course catalog to choose options for next term, and then emailing my advisor to discuss those options and also how to put together a degree program... but my internet connection has been down since midnight last night. *headdesk*

There is only so much a person can do from a phone and one hour on a public library computer, you know?

Oh well, at least I have been putting the time to other productive uses, such as getting through my reading for module 4 of my current class. We have hardly any economic theory this time around -- just a bit of Keynes, not even any Friedman (which I think is a strange choice, but whatever) -- so it's going much faster. History is a delight to me, even when it gets into "let's speculate about the future from our vantage point of 1987!!!" territory and is thus unintentionally hilarious. :-)

(To be fair, the author admits up front that if he's right about any of his predictions, it will be because he's lucky, not because he's good -- the only certainty is that events have a way of disrupting trends and certainties -- but 1987 was a particularly bad time for prophecies, considering just how dramatically events were going to change over the next five years.)

-----

In other news, I got a haircut. Yay no more hair in my eyes or doing that annoying flippy thing on the back of my neck!
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1. I have a general idea of what I want to do for my Ladystuck fic -- by which I mean I have a scenario -- but I don't yet have a plot, and I don't want to start writing until I have an idea of what is going to happen, however vague it may be. That way lies nothing but madness and frustration. So I've been tossing potentialities up in the air since Monday, and presumably they will land in a usable configuration within another day or two.

In the meantime, I've been working a little more on that still-untitled Jade/Dave/Terezi crossdressing porn thing that I've been picking at off and of for a long time now. It's currently 13,200 words in rough draft, I got past one logistical logjam in the actual sex part of the fic, and now I just have... well, the rest of the sex, and then some kind of winding-down scene, which shouldn't take nearly as long because winding-down stuff is vastly easier to write than explicit threesome porn. *sigh*

-----

2. In other news, there seems to have been some miscommunication with my new part-time job, since they haven't contacted me with a schedule and I can't access the scheduling app on their website to either list my availability or check if I have been scheduled, and if so, where and when I should be showing up. I sent an email to the person who ran the training sessions in December but have not heard back yet. If she doesn't respond tomorrow, I will have to try a phone call.

I HATE making cold phone calls without a standard script. But it will only get worse the longer I put it off, right? Right. So that's tomorrow's big willpower-eating activity.

-----

3. In other other news, I have one reading left for this module of my college course -- forty pages of Karl Marx, oh joy -- after which I can start working on the assigned essay. Today I got through about thirty-five pages of John Stuart Mill, which was actually much less trouble than I thought it might be. Of course, that's because only the first half of the assigned excerpts were properly on economics (international trade, to be specific), while the second half was really political theory about what situations might legitimately require government rather than private intervention.

I will probably have to sign up for a class or two in the next term within a month. I should look through the course catalog and talk to my adviser...

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Elizabeth Culmer

August 2017

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