melaniesuzanne: (Me at SPWF2014 (by John T Riley))
January: In a surprise move, I attended an SCA event. Kingdom 12th Night was held in D.C., and I carpooled with Kevin and Courtney for a few hours of hobnobbing with SCAdian friends.

In retrospect, I really should've worn a wimple. However, I'm quite pleased with how the hat turned out.

I also saw "The Hobbit: Denial of Service" and nerd-raged A LOT. However, seeing my second film at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema made that theater my movie-going venue of choice and I've been to only one other cinema since.

My lack of personal insulation due to weight loss was problematic especially since this was one of the coldest winters I've personally experienced.
    12th Night 2014
   
February: We got a fair amount of snow in January and February. One of the superficial things I'd panicked about after the separation was how I'd get everything dug out after a significant snowfall since that task had always fallen upon the ex. I managed just fine, especially since my burly neighbor was especially kind and shoveled my walk for me a few times. He even came out once and took my shovel away while I was digging out the car. I baked him brownies in thanks.     snowcar
I tortured [livejournal.com profile] pirategirleee by taking her to the Baltimore Aquarium for her birthday. "How is that torture?" I hear you ask. Well, PG is TERRIFIED of sharks while I find the critters fascinating. We spent a lot of quality time in the shark pen. And then we played in the gift shop.

Virginia struck down its ban on same-sex marriage and I celebrated a fairly low-key Valentine's Day with the beau. These are completely unrelated events. I completed my last regional Doomsday (year-end financial report) for the Kingdom of Atlantia and my reign of terror as the Virginia Regional Exchequer ended.
    aquarium
   
March: I had a marvelous time at the DC stop "Welcome to Night Vale" tour, winter continued being a bitch on wheels, and I officially filed for divorce.
melaniesuzanne: (Merry Ratmas!)
I wasn't motivated or inspired to decorate for Christmas. I slapped a wintery wreath on the door, but didn't even pull out the table top tree until the weekend before. Bah humbug. This year, though, I'm raring to go.

Being out of town during the prime holiday decorating weekend, however, has put me behind. And with Unevent -- my SCA kingdom's officer and order meetings event -- happening on Saturday, I'm going to be rushed to get everything up on Sunday. I'm wavering on even going to Unevent, though, since I am SO DONE with being an officer and am hanging by a thread until my "boss" finds a replacement. (I've been an exchequer [treasurer for non-SCAdians] since 2004 and I am almost completely fried.)

But anyway, just seeing the bannister garland last night perked me up. I need to get wreaths for the windows and door and perhaps a garland to frame the door as well. The width of our faux tree has made me hesitant to pull it out because I don't have a good place for it any more. I've found some narrow trees, though, that could squeeze into our crowded living space... If I get one, I'm not sure how I'll fit it in the Beetle. There's only slightly more cargo capacity in my car than on my bike. ;)
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
SCA: I received the final Virginia Doomsday report last night. Of course, this was after finally making that group's third quarter report balance after month's of banging my head against it and then walking the branch treasurer through the fourth quarter report and the year-end report. WHOO HOO! Now I get to consolidate all the branch reports into a Virginia spreadsheet and send that up to Kingdom.

Phone: Still in love, or at least like like. I've got my apps where I want them and, before working with the above exchequer, I got the personalized ringtones attached to contacts. Call sound quality is good and the microphone is, according to the recipient of my call, excellent. Not bad considering the phone was a couple of feet away from me on the sofa during the call. The only downside -- you knew there had to be a downside, didn't you? -- is that DecalGirl.com doesn't currently support the Rezound. Poop. I wanted to get a phone skin to match my iPod and Kindle. Oh well, I found a cute case that will do the trick and follow a similar color scheme as the skins on my other devices.

Bike: There are several bikey events coming up.

Stop, Swap, & Save on Sunday, February 12, 9a-2p. It is an indoor bike swap and consumer expo in Westminster, MD.

WABA 2012 Vasa Ride on Sunday, March 4, 7:30a-1p. Per the site, "four hundred riders of all ages and experience levels will gather at the House of Sweden on the morning of Sunday, March 4th for a noncompetitive ride to brave the coldness of winter and traverse DC and Maryland's terrain." There are 59-, 31-, and 15-mile routes for this event. Scott and I are signed up for the 31-miler.

Plus, the Bike Me DC Meetup group has several events scheduled such as a maintenance course this coming Saturday, a "Lost Blossom" tour of lesser known cherry trees at the end of March, and a tour along Skyline Drive, as well as spur of the moment bike tours of the C&O, MVT, and other scenic areas around the DC area. I'm looking forward to the maintenance class. Hopefully, it'll make me less of a bike hypochondriac and more empowered when I know how to fix the squeaks and squawks coming from my beloved velo.

And last, but certainly not least, Snow: Wombat is back in town and has brought inclement weather with him. His snow voodoo has faced a terrible-to-some jet stream but it may get the upper hand this afternoon. I think The Powers That Be don't want to potentially strand him so that he misses Mardi Gras as one of the Sirens of New Orleans' sailors as that troupe dances in parades for the Mystic Krewe of Nyx and the Krewe of Orpheus.
melaniesuzanne: (device)
KASF happened. I worked Troll, perused gorgeous displays, and visited with people I adore. Geeked about Early Period reenactment, bikes and trikes, Downton Abbey, the 1%, and exchequer stuff. SCA arts & sciences event: I'm doing it mostly wrong.
melaniesuzanne: (Exchequer)
Saturday was a long, long day spent at Unevent in Southern Maryland. For those not in the mid-Atlantic region of the SCA, this is an SCA officers' event where we spend a full day training, reviewing, and talking about our offices. The event usually includes order meetings as well, but this year it was all about officers. My passenger Cassie and I avoided the congestion on 210 and took the faster-paced 5 to 301. We arrived two cars ahead of friends who left NoVa an hour before us (and had gotten caught in the backup on 210).

Anyway, I did a review of books for one of my local treasurers and then helped another treasurer trouble-shoot her third quarter report. Two hours later... the report didn't balance and we found inconsistencies in her second quarter report. [livejournal.com profile] psallite kindly fetched lunch for me which I was able to wolf down during the Seneschals & Exchequers meeting. I tried trouble-shooting another third quarter report during the three-hour training session for exchequers. Unfortunately, I didn't have all her paperwork to effectively review her report and find the sticking points. I had a broken report from yet another group, but I did not have the brain cycles left to work my way through that one.

At the end of the day, I passed a couple of people who exclaimed, "I had no idea you were here!" Yeah, that happens when one spends all day in a classroom or a meeting room and doesn't get out to socialize. Ah well. At least I got a review of books completed.

Dinner with friends afterwards was pretty fantastic. Much laughter, tasty drinks, and rejuvenating food. Bless. If you ever get the chance to listen to Ceridwen South's bus stories, don't pass that up.

Cassie and I sang along with Weird Al on the trip home and made pretty good time despite my being so tired that I took the wrong exit off the Toll Road. Oops. It did give us more time to sing with Al.

Woof

Dec. 1st, 2011 10:14 am
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
What a week. Bossman is on vacation and I'm his back-up and most of Hades has broken loose. He called to check in yesterday and I told him that I had picked the wrong week to stop sniffing glue.* Things are finally sort of calming down and most everything that our team is responsible for is under control, thank goodness.

I've been biking to work this week. Yes, it's been cold, but the sunshine on my back, my scarf, and my helmuffs are keeping me warm -- a little too warm, in fact -- on the morning ride. Let's just say that the hair dryer in my desk drawer has been getting a lot of use.** For the evening ride, I swap my cardigan and scarf for the fluorescent jacket and am fairly toasty with that arrangement.

The worst part of the evening ride is the darkness; my little 2 watt lights can illuminate the trail directly in front of my tire and reflective items along the trail, but they're not sufficient for cutting through the gloom. In fact, I almost hit a ninja jogger last night (not even his SHOES had reflective bits). A 600 lumen MiNewt and a more robust tail light should be on my doorstep when I get home tonight. I do think that 600 lumens is overkill and I don't want to sear the eyeballs of oncoming cyclists (or motorists, for that matter), but I like the option of having that much candlepower on my handlebar. I'll probably keep the light at 250 in traffic and then bump it up to 400 when I'm in inky blackness. And I'll keep the less sufficient lights in my pannier as emergency back-ups if something goes awry.

Lessee, what else? Oh, Unevent is this Saturday and, for me, it'll be a day full of exchequery goodness. I have a bunch of reports to troubleshoot for local exchequers this weekend as well. November was pretty much a wash with getting that work done. I figure that if I can figure out what's wrong with the reports before the end of this month, we'll be good.

-------
*We tell each other that line a LOT.
**Although, I worry that the woman who keeps using the restroom while I'm changing my base layer and drying my hair may think I'm homeless.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Nothing's been happening in the costuming department. All my grand plans have fallen to the wayside as I focus on improving my fitness level. Plus, I decided against putting a lot of work and decorating into two dresses which will swallow me whole with the loss of another thirty pounds and then another. No point, really. Maybe it's a little bit defeatist. I'm pretending that it's me looking forward and saving my energy for when it will make the most impact. Yeah, that's going to be my story.

I do need to start and complete a particular sewing project, though. Mom will be here in three short weeks and I need to sew curtains for the craft/guest room so she can have privacy and relief from the Eye of Sauron in the common area out back. I've got the fashion fabric, I've got the blackout fabric, I've mostly got the know-how, I've even got the time. It's a matter of sitting down and actually doing it.

The other project I need to finish is the Virginia year-end financial report. That's numero uno on my list of projects for this weekend. The spreadsheet WILL be in [livejournal.com profile] carthew's in box by Monday morning.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
There was shopping and sushi and more shopping. And that was just Friday night.

On Saturday, there was walking in the chilly sunshine to the post office and back and racing in to Falls Church for the Northern Regional Exchequers' Meeting. My trip included getting lost on the Beltway because the exit for route 7 has moved. Yikes. Several Reviews of Books and reviews of policy were completed. Hooray! Got home earlier than expected and watched "Frost/Nixon" until Hubbyfink got home from the La Belle meeting.

I slept in Sunday (dull surprise) and wolfed down breakfast before racing out for a bellydance open house thingie. Luckily, I checked my phone just before leaving and saw the message that the open house had been postponed. I was bummed about not dancing, but also happy to have my day open up for much needed house maintenance. There was laundry and closet cleaning and bathroom cabinet organization and sweeping and recycling and sheet changing and dishes and fridge cleaning and a DVD workout session (I can do twelve push-ups!) and playing with cats and "Daybreakers". When Hubbyfink got home from La Belle, there was "The Lion in Winter". He went to bed and there was "Big Love" followed by "Real Housewives of Atlanta". Only the finest entertainment is allowed in our home.

Today I am at work but it is very, very quiet. Tonight I may work on SCA clothes a bit. I'd love to wear something new to Investiture and KASF. We'll see if I can make my hands create what I see in my head.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Good gravy, how'd it get to be noon-thirty? Must be all that work I've been doing. No conference calls or firedrills to disrupt my groove. What a delightful change of pace.

Second quarter exchequer reports are rolling in. This makes me a very happy regional officer. I think half of my groups have reported as of this morning and we're five days ahead of the due date. Whoo hoo!

Mostly lazy weekend. I wanted very much to start staging camping gear in the dining room, but I knew that it would drive me bonkers if all the gear were piled up for a week. It's not like I need to hunt things down anyway. We have a shelving unit which is devoted solely to camping gear in the basement. Everything stays packed in its respective bag or box until it is used. Well, everything except the bedding. I went ahead and piled the wool blankets and duvet cover on the dining room table. And a couple of pillows. Oh dear. I'm not sure where the sheets are. I'll need to find them tonight. I usually keep the sheets and featherbed in the blue trunk, but the fabric I purchased at Gulf Wars is still stowed there. (Yes, I know.)

Oreo has become a better pet. He still gnaws on the protective cord covers, but he hasn't destroyed anything in several weeks. I'm even able to hang the toilet paper roll the correct way without him unraveling all the paper. He snuggles with me in the morning while I hit my snooze bar over and over and he pays careful attention to my morning and evening beauty routines. I'm so glad he's a part of our family.
melaniesuzanne: (Exchequer)
I got my drink (and tortilla chips-n-salsa) on and then spent two hours fixing a quarterly report. The report kept getting closer and closer to balanced as I sobered up. Coincidence? I think not.
melaniesuzanne: (Exchequer)
I was wiped earlier and very nearly fell fast asleep when my head hit the pillow around 11:30pm. But after tossing for ninety minutes, I got up and started photocopying Virginia doomsday reports for the kingdom exchequer. Two and a half hours later, I have exactly four pages left to copy and my printer/copier's ink has run out.

AUGH.

Stupid ink cartridges. The cartridge boxes say they'll print up to 250 pages. I've yet to get anywhere NEAR that number of pages yet.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
I have most of the Virginia fourth quarter and year-end reports in hand and/or have soft copies with promises of hardcopies in the next couple of days.

Our federal and state taxes are filed and I expect our delicious refund to hit my bank account in the next couple of weeks. Home improvements, ahoy!

Sunshine

Jan. 29th, 2009 11:38 am
melaniesuzanne: (Winter)
My gracious it's beautiful and bright outside. And also slippery in spots. I was halfway in the Jeep this morning when my left foot shot out from underneath me. Luckily, I was able to hold onto the steering wheel and door to keep from going flat on my back. I also managed not to wrench anything in the process. Eek. I had to pop the Jeepfink into four wheel drive to get over the iceberg behind the vehicle. I completely spaced on digging out an escape route while shovelling yesterday. Once I was out of my parking space, the roads were clear and dry aside from the occassional icy patches at intersections.

Everybody in the cube farm is in a good mood today. Must be a combination of the sunshine and all that time spent working from home. We're actually happy to be in the office. What a concept.

In the past week I've heard from half of the Virginia exchequers. Most were panicking, but at this point it sounds like everybody's (whom I've spoken with, anyway) year-end reports are balanced. I expect a flood of hard copy reports this weekend since, to date, I've received exactly one hard copy. Then I get to spend the next couple of weeks tearing my hair out making the Virginia report resolve. Yay!

Torn

Jan. 26th, 2009 10:14 am
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
I had a jam-packed fun weekend, and I'm pretty much shattered by it. If ever I'd thought I might be an extrovert, this weekend confirmed that I'm definitely, absolutely not. Oh, everything went well: I had a grand time Friday night, Saturday afternoon, and Sunday; but being "on" for so long left me feeling hung-over and fragile. I'm working from home today so I don't have to be around people.

(Note from Saturday, [livejournal.com profile] psalite has been well and truly enabled with BPAL perfumes. Ha ha. Coldie and I loaded her up with a dozen or so imp vials. Coldie and I also swapped imps and bottles between ourselves: my Knecht Ruprecht and Blue Moon 07 for her Chaos Theory IV: CDLXIX and Hexennacht 08. Sweet!)

It's the fiscal end of year for local exchequers and I spent much of the weekend cleaning reports for people. I'm kind of nervous that I've heard from so few; this week could be madness as procrastination catches up with folks.

There's a light covering of snow out front and we're supposed to get some showers or flurries later today and tomorrow. Wednesday looks like it'll be nasty weather-wise. I can't wait!
melaniesuzanne: (Exchequer)
Yay.

Actually, I enjoy Unevent as I get to visit with people I usually only breeze past at most events. Plus, I don't mind Order meetings (of course, I've attended only one at this point) and officer meetings. Since I'm a kingdom deputy, I've got four hours of exchequer meetings and office hours which may test my enjoyment of meetings. ;) Nah, I like being available to assist the local officers who work so hard to keep their groups and, ultimately the kingdom as a whole, in compliance with society regulations.

Yes, I am a bureaucrat.

What I'm not enjoying is that I'll be up before the chickens tomorrow in order to get down to my 9am Order meeting. Okay, Unevent is in Richmond, but I'll be getting up earlier than I ever did for the Unevent daytrips to North Carolina and South Carolina.

Yes, I daytripped to Unevent when it was in South Carolina. Two same-day, round-trip plane tickets on Indepedence Air were cheaper than gas/food/hotel for a full weekend. Crazy.

Tomorrow, I need to be at [livejournal.com profile] carthew and [livejournal.com profile] tirloch's at 6am which means being at Cassie's at 5:45am which means leaving my house at 5:30am which means getting up at 5am. I'm packing a blanket, eyemask, and travel pillow. Oh yes.
melaniesuzanne: (Autumn)
Friday was the perfect day for skulking through the woods and shooting paintballs at coworkers (and Hubbyfinks; we wound up on opposing teams, heh heh heh). I was much more aggressive tihs year and am now sporting some fairly spectacular bruises on my hip, collarbone, ribs and back. Yes, someone shot me in the back. And the worst part of that attack is that the balls didn't break so I didn't have to leave the game, but it hurt so badly that I very happily trotted back to the dead zone with my hands in the air so I wouldn't get shot again.

Also? Thank heavens I've been running on the elliptical for a few weeks. I might've dropped dead out there, otherwise.

Got a call from the vet saying that all three kitties are in good health. Some TMI. )

Hubbyfink and I roused ourselves early on Saturday so we could head down to Front Royal for Atlantian University. I'd planned on wearing my red kirtle, but decided to go with my now-loose Norse ensemble so there wouldn't be anything pressing in on the afore-mentioned bruises. [livejournal.com profile] duchesssimone completed Reviews of Books for Stierbach and Sudentorre as I watched from the side (except for when [livejournal.com profile] tattycat and I had a quick BPAL swap; she took my unloved Carpathian Mountains and I walked away with Mechanical Phoenix). My class (Exchequer 101) went fairly well: people asked lots of questions which I was mostly able to answer and I covered all of the information on the handout. W00t. Afterwards, [livejournal.com profile] rwday and I worked on the Marinus reports and finally got them to balance. Whoo hoo!

Hubbyfink went to a WMA practice on Sunday and I finally prepped the front garden for winter. I love my new hedge clippers. I felt a bit like Edward Scissorhands while attacking the bushes out front. Sadly, I am nowhere near as talented so the boxwoods and whatever-the-other-two-bushes-are are not in whimsical shapes. I put mums and pumpkins on the front steps and replaced the blossom wreath with the indian corn and broom. The pots the mums are in got rather funky during the past year, but a coat of black spray paint made them look so good that Hubbyfink thought I had purchased new pots.

After dinner and a hot bath, I attacked the craft room and got it looking mostly decent. Clothing and accessories are in their proper homes; that made a HUGE impact on the state of the room. I also finally got this year's regional exchequer files under control and in the right places. Now I'm all ready for the third quarter reports to come rolling in.
melaniesuzanne: (swordwork)
Hubbyfink was already working on derusting our pavilion pole pins by the time I got home yesterday. Since we had only one scrubby pad thing for the job, I donned garden gloves and pulled up dead plants and weeds in the back yard. When I started the job, I really did think the best course of action would be to nuke the yard from orbit. But it's starting to clean up a little bit. Picking up all the trash which hooligans have been throwing over the fence has definitely helped. When Hubbyfink finished a bag's worth of poles (eight), I ceased yanking up vegetation.

If you read his journal, you know that Hubbyfink started teaching me some western martial arts moves in the common area behind our house. I was paying attention to him, but peripherally noticed lots of neighbors watching us through windows and back doors. There was even a small group of folks sitting in the grass further down the hill watching us. Luckily, Hubbyfink is chummy with our condo association and our local sherriff in case anyone feels threatened by our practicing slow work out back.

The bugs got voracious just before the Olympics came on and we settled in for Usain Bolt-y goodness. I started working on a couple exchequer reports and didn't put them back down until nearly midnight. Oof. I'll get more information tonight and that should clear up a lot of my questions. Unfortunately, my brain wouldn't let the reports lie and continued poking me that I could certainly find the problems if I just kept staring at the numbers. My brain was wrong. I finally fell into a fitful sleep around 3am but continued waking up several times every hour.

Of course, today would be the day that I have to bring in breakfast which means getting in much earlier than usual. Ah well. My good friend Mt. Dew is keeping me upright for the time being.

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Mary F'ing Sunshine

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