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helwen: (Due Consideration)
Long not as in having a three-day weekend, just a lot happening, starting Friday afternoon.

Got a massage - yay!

Went down into the valley and made a quick stop at CVS, then on to Applebee's for a quick supper...and ran into some of L's relatives who were in the area for the reunion on Saturday. So of course we had dinner with them...then a quick shop for ingredients for the fruit salad for Saturday -- got home late.

Saturday we went to the reunion and stayed for about 2-1/2 hours and then L was toasty so we went home. L mostly took it easy, I got a few things done, like picking a few blueberries and giving them a few gallons of water.

Sunday we went back to the family farm in the morning for pancake breakfast (and leftovers) - and yes, there were GF pancakes. No blueberry ones, but hey, can't have everything. Hung out long enough to be in a couple of family photos and then back home. L took a nap while I made a trash and recycling run and made another fruit salad for the Pennsic Pity Party. Not that we're feeling sorry to not be at Pennsic, but it was a chance to hang out with some people we haven't seen much in the past year. It was a cozy gathering -- and really, just about perfect for us. I got some really old artwork back from Fiona, from back when cut-and-paste was a real thing using actual scissors and glue :D

***

Today we'll be pretty low key, but I at least have more energy today than I would normally have after that much activity and traveling. I picked a _lot_ of blueberries today, and gave them more water. Normally I wouldn't be watering established plants but it's dry enough here that the poor things are already dropping leaves...

I also worked on getting access to a small piece of furniture (moving stuff on and around a table) and finished getting it clear today. It's part of an effort to make the office less cluttered and more usable...we'll be getting a filing cabinet from L's mom soon too, so I have to keep working on opening up space. It'll be nice to get the table out of its current location in the dining room, which is still serving as a storage space for things from all over the place, but esp. the future greenhouse space.

Oh, and we finally got the tiger tapestry up on the wall in the weaving room. It's on the large side and in a frame, so it was a challenge; only took seven months...yes, another year of chaos, but we're making progress.

***

Made appts. with an acupuncturist for Thursday. Let's see what she can do for L's continuing nerve pain and my various issues. Meanwhile, I've dug out the acupressure book and looking at and trying some possible points to use. I used to have a routine of points I did regularly but whenever something new is added to my or our lives I tend to lose other bits.
helwen: (Due Consideration)
New Year's Eve we actually considered going to visit some friends across the valley (in the afternoon), but other things we really had to do left us with not enough energy. We didn't even go to Elmer's for their NYE party (which ends at 9pm so we can all go home and be comfy, lol). Nope, just watched a movie and took it easy.

Saw Hunger Games, enjoyed it. Yes, we've seen Star Wars: A Force Awakens. Twice. No, it isn't the best movie ever made, and yes, the heroic journey is not a new story. But they told it fairly well and we liked it. I paid more attention to the fight sequences the second time around after reading a few people's complaints, and I think it was all reasonable, if you're really paying attention to _everything_ that's happened. Of course, you also have to realize that in the end, nobody actually won.

Twenty-one years together for L and I; hopefully more down the road, if we take care of ourselves.

Financial paperwork for my mom's estate is ongoing -- my brother Kent is really doing a great job. Fortunately cleaning her place was the hardest part of putting her place up for sale, so I'm glad L and I could help with that...after he finished get the rest of the stuff out we didn't have time for, he got in a professional cleaning crew, who did a great job washing surfaces, rug-cleaning, etc. The place got offers the week it went on the market. Things should go all right from here, but there still needs to be final inspection, etc.

Trying to figure out the best use for the funds I'm getting from her various savings. I'll put some into the mortgage -- won't change things much in the immediate future, but will reduce the amount of interest that can accrue as I think I'll cut a few years off the end of the mortgage. I might put more into it later, but we have some things to do with renovations, etc. first.

I've started small, with a couple of flatpack cabinets for the upstairs bathroom, to replace the plastic shelving. I'm trying to enclose some stuff so I can reduce cleaning time. I'm terrible about cleaning, so if I can make the time I do spend on it go further, it's all good. We were already planning on built-in cabinetry in the dining room, but of course it's nice to have a cushion for all of this -- and plans haven't changed for how we're going to do that, either. On the other hand, when I buy new faucets and shower head for the upstairs bathroom, we'll get a professional to put them in -- one of our nephews does plumbing, so it'll be nice to send some of those dollars his way.

We took my mom's bedroom furniture for L's side of the room, so now he has working drawers and we should be able to fit all his clothing into them. I was really tired of fighting with the old drawers, which didn't have guides.

Fitting in the other bits of furniture has been a challenge, but slowly figuring things out. Getting rid of things too, of course. The old dresser is in the barn still, but I think it's going into his mother's church's summer sale or something...really, between the new stuff and the planned construction projects, it's like moving into the house all over again.

The greenhouse project should be happening this year, as well as the solar panels (yay for gov't incentives and stuff, as well as for three small hilltowns banding together to get the best contractor prices). In retrospect, it's a good thing these two projects didn't happen last year, even though it means the dining room is currently full of plants and stuff. If they'd gone forward last fall, L might have had to stay in MA instead of joining me in CA, and he was instrumental in getting some things done there.

Yes, emotional stuff is happening. I don't write about it much because thinking about things enough to put it into words for other people is hard. The fact that my mother and I had a complicated relationship doesn't help. I am glad that I went out in October, the month before she died; it was the best visit we'd ever had. Just about perfect, for both of us.

More to say, but this is already pretty long.
helwen: (Due Consideration)
I'm slowly getting better and having more energy -- as long as the air I'm breathing isn't full of pollen and high humidity. Still, not having to use the inhaler as often is nice.

L is a tiny bit better; we've discussed calling the doctor's office for a follow-up.

MIL came home last Friday and is still there!

***
L accomplished some mowing - we're trying to be minimalist on that this year, but we want outlines around the perimeter of the woods, around a couple of garden beds, next to the road, and around the house and barn. Still quite a bit. The only good thing about not having gotten a lot of rain while we're under the weather is that the grass hasn't been growing as fast.

I took a stab or three at pulling garlic mustard out, and moved some things in the barn. Um, sometime in the past few weeks I finished a skirt, gators, two regular pillow cases, one knee pillow case, a lined flat-bottomed bag, a tutu, two sets of curtains (and put up the rods for them!), and started work on creating an underbust corset-like thing.

That last one I made the body of the pattern for based on an existing underbust corset I own, but am modifying the design. I've added a center-back piece instead of the underlap placket and instead of lacing I'm doing a strappy thing that crosses in the back and closes in the front. There will still be a center front opening with its own closures. And there will be boning, because otherwise it would just fold on itself because of the width of the thing. But it isn't designed to pull in the waist significantly, more to just create a smooth silhouette. We'll see if it works.

***

Because we were both laid up, have removed a few things from the schedule - no dandelion wine making this year, and not going to try to put something together for Ashfield's parade next month.

***

We managed to get to JoAnn's for a sale, while we were in the valley for other things. I found some outrageous fabric in clearance and picked up a yard, as well as re-stocking the thread supply -- everything on sale, even the clearance. The outrageous fabric had been $20+/yard but was marked down to $12 and was half off that day, which was the final deciding factor. I got it for my bunny costume.

Speaking of which, sometimes ideas happen when you're unwell that are clearly mad and should be dismissed out of hand, but sometimes when you're feeling better, you might change your mind. Since we were talking costuming, Lyle somehow mashed things together and got Warhammer 40K cuty death bunny... yesterday, on a whim, I did a search and found some....interesting stuff. The pink Space Marine armor with bunny ears was probably my favorite :D I'm considering sticking with the pink and black motif, but changing the design to WH40K Inquisitor...
helwen: (Due Consideration)
My brother Kent was on the East Coast for a reunion with some army buddies and was able to stop by here, being "in the neighborhood." It was nice to hang out for a bit:

lyle_heather_kent_sm

Gave him a tour of the place, of course. Chatted about family, "fun times" growing up, various things happening in the world, etc. Wasn't really in his budget to be traveling but the army friends have been trying to arrange something for a few years; who knows when the next time might be? Plus he was able to fit in a visit to a friend, who is now in a nursing home -- someone he met online in a single-dads forum some years ago. Definitely making the most of the plane trip :)

The rolling march against the TGP pipeline came through Ashfield yesterday, on its way to Boston. Here's a pic Kent took of me in the march, sitting next to the very cool Harry K:

no_pipeline_July_10_2014_a_small
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Mom's GFR is currently down to 11 (kidney function); if it reaches 10, she goes on dialysis. She admitted when we talked on the phone that she hasn't been remembering to take her afternoon meds, so we'll see if being better about the meds helps. I expect she lost track of some things after the hip replacement surgery; she's seeing the doctor about this, so we'll see what happens next. On the plus side, her walking has improved, so looks like the surgery was a success.

Meantime, one of my brothers posted that us siblings are at risk for kidney issues....I looked over a checklist and it looks kind of familiar but I'd forgotten about it. Currently I have 3 risk factors but can only do something about one of them, which is lose some more weight -- that thing about how overweight people are supposedly at higher risk for diabetes.

Diet matters, but it isn't just about weight. I know this because my eldest brother has diet-controlled diabetes and was never more than maybe 15 lbs. overweight, but used to eat the equivalent of chocolate-frosted sugar bombs for breakfast, whereas my blood sugar levels are _almost_ borderline for being concerned about, and I am chubbier than he ever was...if I ate the way he used to, it would likely be a different story. My next check-up is in May, so we'll see if the new tweakings I've started doing this winter are making a difference or not.

That said, I'm still going to work on losing a few inches, but mostly because it will help me to do the things I want to do.

I should tell my PRN about my mom though; combined with being half-Chinese, she may want to check kidney function.

Home :)

Jun. 20th, 2013 11:38 am
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Got in to Bradlee fine; met L in baggage claim :)

Ride home uneventful, but L needed to unwind a little from the drive so we were up until about 2:00 a.m.

Woke up early then went back to bed and didn't get up and stay up until nearly 10:00 a.m.! Well, we both needed the sleep.

Got quite a bit of stuff to unpack and figure out where it all goes over the next week, along with getting back to work finding homes for the stuff already here -- now that we have a floor in the basement!

The trip was useful and things got done. It was nice to see family again. That said, I don't plan on a solo trip ever again.

Very good to be back home.
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Day 12: Out the door at 5:45 a.m. - possibly too early. 55F. Sprinklers were on earlier and the brisk breeze combined with that made things extra chilly. Hip was being a little cranky this morning even after 15 min. of warmups... practiced some defense, went through Basic Stance form and Yiluchuan, decided the hip was going to be a problem and went for a walk instead. 45", so still not bad for exercise. Learning to recognize when you can push your limits and when you shouldn't can be tricky; think I did okay today.

I share the space with quite a few critters, btw. There's a couple of turkeys wandering around here in the early hours, and sometimes deer. There's a mama and fawn in the neighborhood, as well as a young buck. Mama charged the buck yesterday to keep him away from her baby. Crows, hummingbirds, salamanders, and many others beside.

Finished hemming another dress this morning. Reviewed some reading materials, read a little on identifying valuable books, did a little chi gong, had breakfast, remembered to pack a book for a friend.

Still haven't gone over computer things with mom (how to forward, how to attach) - must do that today. Oy. I'll be glad to back on my own PC again -- keep hitting various wrong keys, which can be either minorly annoying or wtf...

Post office trip in the afternoon sometime.

Have a good day all!

June 16

Jun. 16th, 2013 04:59 pm
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Yes, got more vacuuming done - all but the room I'm staying in, as the sofa bed is open and covers most of the floor.

Lunch went pretty well. Very crowded at Sizzlers - no surprise, given it's Fathers Day. Mom wanted to get a new plant or two, but no luck where we went.

Saw Kirk's house and yard -- seems to suit his needs well, lots of fruit trees, the young almond tree is coming along, and the house is very well insulated, to keep electric usage and costs down.

Kent helped with getting plants out of one of the big planters, in prep for new plants before he left.

That's it for now.
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Day 10: Pretty uneventful afternoon/evening. Started vacuuming (after cleaning out the vacuum parts) and got through two rooms so far. Halfway done with hemming one of the jumpers - it's about an inch longer than one of my Eat More Kale t-shirt... went to bed about 10:00 p.m.

Day 11: And woke up around 3:00 a.m. :P After about an hour I finally managed some light dozing between times working on my left shoulder, until the alarm went off at 5:50 a.m. Out the door by 6:00 a.m., 53F. Warmups were a little slow; I was actually feeling not too bad, just tired. Decided to do some Chin Na first so I wouldn't forget to do them. Six of the alternating maubu/gungbu type, then the first five of defense from front punch. Number 5 was little sketchy today, so didn't want to go past that. Ran through hand forms from Basic Stance to San Soo, then walked for a mile. 60 minutes all told.

Made breakfast for both of us - scrambled eggs w/almond milk, onions, garlic, and stinging nettles. Only dried nettles here, of course, so I put some in a little bowl and added a little water to rehydrate them.

Mom suggested watering the pot we're getting new plant(s) for - the pot still has the old plants in it that she doesn't want anymore, including a mini-rose with deep roots. Life got somewhat annoying when she came out to "help". Pot is watered, majority of plants are still in the pot.

I should probably vacuum another room this morning.

Oh, and looks like I've lost a few pounds. Hopefully this translates into happier joints, although frankly I think the work I've been doing on posture, stabilizing and strengthening have had just as much, if not more, impact.

Kent and Annie will be here at about 11:30 to pick us up and go to Kirk's house to celebrate mom's birthday. I expect I'll get a tour, since it's my first time seeing his place in-person.

****

Happy Father's Day to all you fathers out there!
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Day 9: More leftovers for meals, with some fresh veg added. Too much fast carbs, energy levels meh. Add in discussing stuff from ancient family history :P Sooner or later, eventually she just has to bring up the past and analyze and explain and... feh. Finally told her to stop it. While the past informs the present, sometimes the best way to move forward is to let go of the past.

Did a little going over of books that may be valuable, and sales options. Did some packing tests; think I may switch up to a larger box for the second check-in box. More cleaning. Mom tried on 3 jumpers and a long-sleeved dress so I could pin them. Italian mystery was decent.

Forgot to mention that sleep had been totally crappy and bad dreams...just one more motivation to get out of bed that morning...

L was my link to sanity last night...

Day 10: Overslept. No time for exercise. Unlikely that the previous night's sleep contributed that much, since it isn't the only night of bad sleep I've had here. Don't know if it was all the fast carbs or if I'm adjusting further to the time zone. At home I get up very early, but the room I'm staying in is darker than the bedroom at home. Considering opening the drapes tonight... also found a wind-up travel alarm here and will set it tonight.

Just a few more days...
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Day 8: Birthday lunch went well, nice time with relatives, and a few pictures taken. My cousin Cary will be emailing pics to me later. You know, I forget what we did after that, but we did finish off the night with a foreign language mystery. One of the channels here has international mystery nights - subtitles, thankfully. Last night was in French, and it was funny at one point when there was both English and French subs and my Mom wondered what was going on with that -- they were speaking in Italian at the time.

Day 9: Stiff this morning - had a little wheat at lunch - it was just easier to accept the little custard pie from Auntie D than try to explain my change in diet. Happily I could sort through the rest of the dim sum pretty safely. Still more carbs than I'm used to, so made a nice bit of scrambled eggs this morning to help offset some of that. Eggs, a smidge of almond milk (adds loft), some cheddar, kale, and garlic. Nom!

But before breakfast, worked on my shoulders a bit, then out the door at 6:43 a.m. (56F in the shade), for some warm ups. Ran through all the hand forms except 8 Step Link, got a little further in Spear (yes, need to review that over the phone yet again, and maybe write down a few notes this time), finished up with 1/2 mile or so walk. I was going to do some Chin Na too but ran out of steam, so only 47 minutes outside. Showered and made breakfast, hard boiled a few eggs, took out the trash, did a little dusting.

Off to look at some vintage beads and jewelry and contemplate how and what to pack of some things. Probably have mom try on a couple of jumpers for pinning to new length, and hem them later. Work on flyer, help her re-learn how to attach and send files, and some other computer stuff.

Be well!

California

Jun. 13th, 2013 10:42 am
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Huh. Missed a day here...

Day 7: Out the door at 6:35 a.m., 56F. Sunnier this morning. Found a poor cold bee on the sidewalk; didn't want to damage it by trying to move it, but I gave it some wet blades of grass so it could get a drink at least. Hand forms, a little self-defense practice (just some of the maubu/gungbu stuff, not the defense from front punch stuff), tai chi.

Kinda mixed the slow in with the fast, as a way to work out some stiffer muscles without actually having to stop and stretch. Also, one of the neighbors was in the parking lot for a few minutes, so I figured moving slower would be less alarming. Only 40 min. today, busy day today.

Cleaned bathroom yesterday (Tuesday), lot of work there. Started cleaning kitchen Wednesday.

Lunch with another friend of Mom's, Barbara. Shopping via golf cart. A seatbelt would be nice.

Day 8: Took 15 minutes to get out the door this morning (7:15 a.m.). 50F in the shade but a clear sunny day so I moved over to a patch of sun after a few minutes. This morning's body, after two days of scrubbing surfaces, dictated slower movement. Stretching, wave hands like clouds, grasp the bird's tail. Only went through basic stance form once then opted for walking down/up/down hill on the nearby road. 50 minutes all told. Asthma kicked in lightly this morning on the uphill but has chilled out some. Probably back to kung fu forms tomorrow, but sometimes you have to slow down and heal a bit -- this too builds strength.

Mom's actual b-day is today. Aunt D, Uncle C and cousin C coming over for lunch. Celebrating her birthday with my brothers and niece A on Sunday at eldest brother Kirk's house.

Gotta go; want to do a little more cleaning before lunch.

Have a great day folks!

California

Jun. 11th, 2013 11:35 am
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Day 5, cont: Yup, painted a stool -- one that stays out in the patio area. Trimmed the Asian orange tree a little (oranges are somewhat elongated instead of spherical), more cleaning of the garden area. Mom removed some of the dead groundcover (baby's tears) and transplanted live bits into those spots. Snails removed and put under a tree/bush a little ways away.

Packed framed embroidery, along with some fabric and buttons - that'll get mailed next week before I leave. Re-packed another box but didn't finish it because I suspect we aren't done going through things. Looked at art books with mom. A little dusting.

Day 6: Out the door at 6:45 a.m., 55F! Warm-ups, Basic Stance Form, Yiluchuan, both Cannons, San Soo, and did part of Spear until I got stuck. I was going to practice some Chin Na (just some of the basics like yesterday) but forgot; hopefully I'll have time later in the day for that. Short walk and more Qi Gong. About 50 minutes, so not bad. Generally I've been going for around 45-60 min. for morning exercise. Showered, breakfast, then got into dusting. Mom slept in for some reason this morning; restless night I think. She doesn't want to sleep in past 9, so tomorrow I'll wake her at 9 if she sleeps in again.

I believe today's plans include cleaning the bathroom (floor and counter), and helping her wash her hair. Tomorrow is the kitchen, although I've gotten a slight jump on that already and plan do to more of the same today.

California

Jun. 10th, 2013 12:42 pm
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Day 4, cont.: Worked on getting some things out of the storage unit in the afternoon. Some giveaway, some recycling or trash, and a framed embroidery that I'll be boxing for shipping to MA. Not a family heirloom - gift from Auntie Fawn to mom at some point in time, lovely crewel work from an estate sale. I think the flowers are poppies - not inappropriate for us given all the poppies in one of the flower beds.

Hm, think I did a little cleaning yesterday, but mostly little stuff like washing the kitchen counter. Went through some stuff in the living room too.

Day 5: Another "chilly" day 58F this morning, plus damp and breezy. Did some warming up indoors first, then went out. Practiced Basic Stance form, Yiluchuan, 1st Cannon, and San Soo first, to work more on correct posture and movement, working on having lower stance when I could, as it really changes movement and how the hips and knees work. Worked a little on 8 Step Link, to try to retain at least a little of it. Worked on some Chin Na. Finished with a little gentle walking and Chi Gong. Oh, and chatted briefly with one of mom's neighbors, Bea.

Did a little tidying and had breakfast and went online briefly (FB and email). A couple of drawer pulls on mom's bedroom furniture were damaged some time ago and need replacing -- she used other knobs she had for the past several years, but consignment shops prefer matching, so when either she goes through another downsizing of stuff or she passes, she wanted to have that taken care of already. Fortunately Hitchcock Chair Co. still carries eagle knobs. They're waiting for a new supply of them to come in; I'm on the list to be contacted.

Anyway, this morning I pulled stuff out of one of her closets and she pulled out more stuff for giveaway and/or throwaway. A few paint cans and the fruit picker will be going into the storage unit, now that there's more room in there. We aren't quite done with that closet, but it's progress. She needs to do a little research, but should be able to find a home for the extra archival materials in there as well.

Typing this during lunch time (she's watching the news - they're talking about the NSA stuff, among other things). Had egg salad with a little sea salt (next time think I'll go for diced cucumber, but it's okay), along with a couple of leaves of lettuce. The lettuce helped offset the salt, so overall not bad.

Probably going to paint a stool this afternoon, maybe some other stuff too. Not sure what else. Sorting takes forever... oh, and I went through at least 6 of the Sunset magazines my mom has been saving for 2 years for me to look through. Found a couple interesting tidbits, but the magazine is geared toward the West coast, so plenty to pass over in them :D

Okay, going to see if I can start boxing up that embroidery or not...

Be well, all!

California

Jun. 9th, 2013 11:18 am
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Day 3, cont: Hemmed a couple pair of pants and got another pair set up for hemming today. Put done pants on hangers. Dusted in hallway, wall that kitchen opens onto (including AC vent), and mom's bedroom. Finished sorting through vintage buttons. Cooked dinner (veggie/tofu stir fry w/curry and garlic). Long, wide-ranging chat with fitzw once he got back from Somer Draw. Long chat with mom while sitting on the floor (S&P shaker collection currently resting on floor, so we got down to look at it and stayed there), talking about lots of stuff, including the fact that we both tend to get invited and/or otherwise involved in groups who'd like to use our skills. Not a bad thing, but learning to say "No" is an important skill to acquire and continue to cultivate, to preserve ourselves. Can't help anyone if you're a wreck. Looking carefully at one's life and at the "big picture", choosing the best direction, all challenging stuff.

Day 4: Better sleep than previous nights, turns out it was cooler last night. Out the door by 7:45 a.m. to practice. Only 60F out but damp so I wore one of my mom's long-sleeved shirts instead of my usual sleeveless tops. Pretty much same forms as yesterday. Started to work on spear but the damp was getting to me, and I really want at least a stick to use... zenning weapons forms is cool, but wasn't to be this morning. Muscles were just a little too stiff, even after working on forms for a while, so went back inside and did some work on stretching and limbering, then squats, then finished up with gentle walking.

After that was packing up a few things, catching up on dishes, making breakfast (tried for omelet, ended up with scrambled), then shower. My mom is into reading a paper, so I read a few articles before getting online.

11:00 a.m. here now -- expect that since it's cooler than yesterday (got up to 100F), we'll do some work outside, dealing with storage or something.

***
My mom's place has these cool "lights" -- tubes with a clear cover at the bottom, that go up through the ceiling to the roof. Above, there's a curved cover with a mirror or something reflective, that helps guide more light into the space. Unfortunately some installers didn't install well enough and complaints (probably in wetter parts of the country) eventually shut the company down. Hers work perfectly though -- only thing is I sometimes forget and look for a switch to turn one off as I'm leaving the room :D

I also like the slider bar for the shower head, so you can adjust the height it's at, and the head is on a peg so you can lift it entirely off the bar if you like.

Well, time to go.

California

Jun. 8th, 2013 09:41 am
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Day 2, cont.: kung fu around 7:30 a.m., breakfast (eggs, cheddar, baby kale, onion, garlic - (I made it), shower, going over stuff in the den (room I'm staying in). Mom tried on some of her pants that need hemming and I pinned them. Picked out some fabric and stuff (buttons, sock darner, trim from China, etc.) to take home. Trimmed excess from one pair of pants. Hm, actually trying on the pants might have been the evening before? Still a little scrambled from time change I guess. Anyway, also worked on cleaning up the patio, taking trash and recycling out, and discussing what sorts of plants might be good to put in one of her planters. Had a visit from a neighbor in the afternoon.

Day 3: short walk then kung fu around 6:30 a.m., shower, then cereal for breakfast. Mom tired, so she's back in bed this morning. I'll probably go do some sewing after I finish posting this.

***

*sigh* Wish I could connect to the internet here with my laptop...tedious having to type in all my usernames and passwords each time... and of course, not going to download a game onto my mother's pc - don't think her computer can handle it anyway. Oh well. 9-10 more days to go. And a birthday celebration in there, plus a visit from aunt, uncle, and cousin too, so there's that.

***

Forms were a bit better today than yesterday. I use Basic Stance form and Iluchuen (sp?) for warm up...Not sure if I'm doing part of Cannon 1 correctly, but at least I'm faking a continuation on the part I'm uncertain of...Cannon 2 isn't too horrible either. Added Mei Hwa (sp?) today, which has its own issues, but I want to work on as much of it as I can. San Soo (sp?) is going pretty well, aside from that funky bit in the closing. Working on getting into slightly lower stances. (Yeah, I pretty much can't spell anything in the Chinese -- going to have to work on that)

Ah, did figure out today that if I can move into pubu using the forward foot as a more aggressive "strike", that I can attain a wider, lower stance.

Tomorrow I'll consider zenning a weapons form. L and I didn't have time for practice at home before I flew out to CA, so I'm stressing out a little on how much of spear I can remember, since I'm still working on putting it all together in my head. The body remembers most of it, but not necessarily all in the correct order. Eventually I'll get it, and get body, mind and spirit working as one to do the form.

California

Jun. 6th, 2013 08:42 am
helwen: (Due Consideration)
Day 1:

Arrived safely in CA last night.

First flight was delayed by 25-30 minutes. American Eagle (bus) to O'Hare. They have a 'valet' system which most of us used -- the crew puts the baggage somewhere else in the plane, probably because it wouldn't all fit overhead. Good for getting people seated more quickly. At the end of the flight you have to wait in the elevator/tunnel for them to get your luggage out again, which is, eh.

Originally had 1-1/2 hours to get from one gate to the next, ended up having about half an hour -- I think it could have been more time actually, but because everyone checked in early, we left early. Got in to San Jose 20 minutes ahead of schedule.

Kent was already there and I didn't have check-ins, so we just took off in niece Annie's car. Got a drive-by 'tour' of some of the 'sights' on the way to his place. Financial district, mall and its construction history, partially built projects stalled by the economy tanking -- one of which is now being disputed in court. Strange mix of stuff.

Day 2: Woke up a few times -- once when A's alarm, which she'd forgotten to take with her to the living room, went off -- but overall slept pretty well. Got up around 7:00 a.m. PT (she had to be at her internship, which is a little ways away, by 8:00 a.m.).

In just a little bit we're going to go to a store for a little shopping - K says it isn't like a regular supermarket, and should have some good stuff :)
helwen: (Default)
Family and friends
Coming together in thanks
Too much tasty food
That much more to send on home
Small but welcome gift of rest.

***
Gray family Thanksgiving :)
helwen: (Default)
Official Coyne family reunion is today (Coyne is my MIL's maiden name). Unofficially, some folks showed up yesterday -- mostly to get started on some food things early but as it turns out a repair to the chair swing happened when someone sat on it and something went kerflooey. Then Sunday morning there will be a breakfast gathering of anyone still in the area. Word is there will be around 55 people today.

Also, yesterday evening I discovered a hornet nest being built right near where the main festivities will be. Only one sting, thankfully. It's been more than a few years since that's happened... reminded me of when I used to get allergy shots.

This morning I need to do more of the mulching I was doing when I was...interrupted by the hornets, then gather some kale and make something for the gathering. It will involve GF pasta, aged cheddar, kale, onions, garlic, and possibly some almond milk or olive oil.

Have a lovely day, everyone!

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helwen

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