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Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween!

I have to admit, I haven't even bought any candy. We live so far off the road if we get one trick or treater it's a miracle. I might pick up a small bag on the way home, one that I won't eat but that will be it. We have other issues going on - David got his first weasel last week - a customer that is doing backflips to get out of paying him. When he started with Maureen  she was nasty but he had promised - given the amount of work he has now he knew better but he had started.... She's a particularly nasty type that we've dealt with before on Long Island - they let you get almost done and then come up with bullshit "complaints". All he needs is to do put up one more piece of trim and a doorknob. So far he's been accused of stealing stain, hanging doors upside down, buying a scratch and dent door (please keep in mind the customer picked out, ordered and paid for the door so how he did that is beyond me), etc, etc and every time he proves her wrong she starts something else. The last of it is he came early to do the doorknob when she said to come. She's told him to come at numerous times and then isn't there, locks up the house,etc. he left her a note and told her to deduct the price of the doorknob and settle up and we were treated to a rather hysterical (and I suspect somewhat drunken phone call) around 11pm at night in which she kept screaming it was her birthday and she didn't have to tell him that because he's not a part of her life. Hmm. So we will be taking her to court - David was upset since he did do the work, but it's not an astronomical amount and next time he'll listen to that little voice inside that says RUN FAR.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

This Will Never End. Never.

I've been working on this blanket it seems forever and a day - I had (3) 4 hour infusions this week and brought it along, I knit on it when we went to Pittsburgh and back in the car for the conference. I knit when we go to Clarksburg and every night on the end of the couch I'm faithfully ticking away - well, no ticking noise really since I'm using Addi Turbo German stainless steel with a flexible 60" cable ("why of course they're cheap David!!") but I've been knitting and knitting and it's still NOT done. This weekend the weather has been awful AND there are a slew of horror movies on so I've been putting in real couch time. So far we've watched The Invisible Man, The Werewolf, Village Of The Damned, Pumpkin Head, Mortuary, and The Lost Voyage which had Judd Nelson - does anyone beside me remember him? He was one of the brat pack (16 Candles, The Breakfast Club, St Elmos' Fire) - I don't like him as an actor but I'm mesmorized by his nostrils. They're fairly large and seem to have a life of thier own. Hmm. Definately digressing. SO I'm still knitting on the same thing and my stash is backing up which means there's no way I can sneak another skein into the house since it's already bursting out of the dresser and spilling out of the closet. The weather today has been crazy by the way as I had started saying. First the wind howled, then it rained. Then the sun came out. Then it went back in and a big black cloud blocked out the sun. Then it started snowing. A lot. Then rain. Snow. Rain. Wind sun rain, etc... Oh well, I think Pumpkin Head II is on in a few minutes.....

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Let It Snow - EEKK!!

Can you believe this already - SNOW! Ok , so it wasn't a whole lot of it, just a dusting but it's snow already. And no it doesn't usually start this early. I've been cheerfully leaf-peeping all week, it seems like they just start to turn the tiniest bit and then POW, everywhere you look is amazing. I've been doing alot of driving out in Preston county which to me is the most beautiful place and in the fall it's wonderful. I'm still working hard, when there's new people in the office it takes awhile for them to be really up and running. And I'm still working on that stinkin' blanket, I keep telling myself one more line of trees and I'm done, but I've just been at it too long and there's so many other things to make. I was wandering around Michaels the other day and I'm not even interested - what's the point when I'm harnessed to this blanket, day after day, week after week (PLEASE NOT year after year......) I've heard from Adam a few times and he still hasn't gotten any birthday gifts as far as I know - he ship left port without him because he had to testify at a court martial (thank goodness not his!!) and I'm thinking his birthday gifts went with it.

Sunday, October 22, 2006


Pearl was not a good citizen at Cooper's Rock again - she's good EVERYWHERE else, but there's something about this park she can't deal with. I know part of it was we brought Jackson which made her very happy and we hadn't been out hiking in a couple of weeks, but she couldn't calm down and bounced her way through miles of trail. We were there about 3 1/2 hours, long enough for Jackson to not-so-secretly dispise her for the rest of the day. Today it's very crappy out, cold, grey and rainy so we're in watching Sci-Fi - since it's near Halloween there are a slew of B horror movies. Jackson and I watched "Dagon",a movie about evil fishlike people that skin visitors so they can wear thier skins to  disguise themselves AND also indulge in human sacrifice. There was some other movie we watched last night that was so awful I can't even think of what it was about, let alone the title. I'm STILL working on that baby blanket, I finished the second row of houses and now have only one more row of trees plus the border. I've never knit an entire blanket on size three needles and will be hard pressed to do so again anytime in the near future. I'll be glad when it's finished!

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Fear Of Fridays

Once again I was out past my curfew on Friday - and I'm not even on call! It's been a busy week for me workwise. For the first part of the week I had the new nurse in tow to see my patients, she's never done homecare and it's a whole other animal. I've always found that if you're ontime, polite and clean up after yourself that's about 80% of the job. I worked all day Wednesday instead of my usual half day because of the Pennsylvania patients, then Thursday it was off to Pittsburgh for another inservice. We had a flat tire but managed to make it ontime and it rained as usual all the way home. Friday was another full day and I ended up working until 7pm because the nurse oncall got slammed and you do have to be a bit flexible - especially since you might be the slam-ee the next time around. I haven't taken any pictures in the past week - I think about it as I'm racing by the fall foliage and am acutely aware it will be gone very soon so I need to start. But we are heading off to Cooper's Rock today, Jackson is coming along and we have to stop and buy someone a NEW harness as her's got mysteriously chewed. Hmmm. Because I've been working so much Pearl has not been walking for a week and she brought me the harness a few times yesterday and dropped it at my feet. I suppose the chewing up of the harness is some sort of veiled Dog Threat. She's still stealing and chewing things up, but it's slowed somewhat -I'm not sure if she's getting more obedient or we're just getting better at hiding things.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Missing: One Spider

I've not seen the big spider that's occupied my bathroom window all summer for over a week now. Every once in awhile, I go for a few days without seeing it - perhaps it takes little spider jaunts or has a vacation web somewhere else, but I'm thinking perhaps with fall in full throttle it's gone to it's next life. It's very strange how you can get used to something just being there even though it serves no purpose in your own day to day existance. It didn't really do anything for me - I enjoyed seeing if she'd caught anything - and what - admiring what a big spider she was - but she was there when I went to bed and finishing up her night when I got up. I suppose that goes to show what a poor vegetarian I am since I thought the whole process was fairly neat and never did try to save one of her meals. Today I had a new nurse with me - training her for visits and I stopped at McDonalds' so she could get lunch. She asked if I would be offended by her eating meat. Considering I made Jackson come out and step on a mouse last night that the cat hadn't quite killed instead of attempting a rescue and rehab, that I wear leather and fur quite gleefully come winter, that I cook meat fairly well (according to the carnivores in my house) and I'm currently training a hunting dog I would give that a big NO. I sometimes am amazed that PETA has not come by and revoked me entirely.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Hey! Where'd Ya Go?

Well, Pearl has done it now - David could excuse the shoe stealing couch chewing food snitching 5 am ear sniffing and face licking, but Pearl went over the line. David shot over her  - and she ran. David was devestated.(Just for the record in WV you can happily shoot in your yard all day and can take potshots at what ever is crossing the lawn - in the fall there's a guy next door that runs his beagle team around our lower yard. We don't say anything because we like the beagles).  He and Jackson worked with her the other day and she seemed to be getting a bit better but this morning he shot once and she was plastered against the door shaking. I made everyone go to thier corner, but he said enough, she was mine and he wanted nothing to do with her. So I went on the internet and read up on gun shy dogs. When we went to Sam's Club today (they opened the new one in Morgantown) I bought her a box of snacks for training and David despite his announcement it was hopeless - picked up a small case of Vienna Sausages. For the record I CANNOT BELIEVE they are for human consumption - I would rather eat the dog snacks. And for the record they were CHEAPER than the dog snacks. We took the dogs out on leashes and I held Pearl while David shot and then walked her over to him so she could get a sausage. Hmm. You could see the wheels turning. By the 5th sausage I wasn't even holding the leash and she didn't run for the hills -she ran for the training dummy and her beloved Vienna Sausage. I had to laugh though - she's probably the only hunting dog in the world being trained by a vegetarian!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Straight From Fall To Winter

You know how I've been carping all week about how I can't wait for fall, it's too hot, yada, yada? Well, I'm not complaining now! The temps were hot yesterday and this morning a little chilly, but nothing to write home about - but around 10 it started going down. And down. And down - it's now about 40 degrees outside and the wind is whipping away. I could've kicked myself this morning because I forgot my camera AGAIN and the wind of course is stripping the fall leaves off the trees. I told Jackson to locate his winter coat for tomorrow - he stayed home today because he had what I had the other day. He came home early yesterday and today was a toss-up as to how sick he was. But with both of us working we try to err on the side of caution because if he is sick, there's no one to come get him sometimes. But I am enjoying the lower temps - I found my hot chocolate (ok!ok! My sugarfree/fatfree/ 50 calorie hot chocolate, but hey, I'll take it where I can)and my furry slippers so I'm set for life. My dieting continues to do well, I lost a few more pounds, I figure I'll stop when people start worrying about me. Actually, when you get to be older, being overly skinny isn't as attractive as it was when you were 20 - a friend of mine once said you don't look good, you look haggard and I think she's right. BUT it's fun to lose the little extra so when I'm at Garfield's or Applebee's I can order the dessert that employs the words "chocolate" and "monster" in the same sentence and not have to worry about it.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Before And After

Charger got his last haircut of the season - by the time the real cold weather comes back, he'll have enough to keep him warm. Ricky did a good job, didn't she? I'll have to get a better picture, everytime I try to take one Pearl thinks Charger is getting something that she isn't so she parks herself right in front of him in order to be first in line. Work is going better, my paperwork has vastly improved and I got complimented on it! We have to go to the other half of the oasis training in Pittsburgh, this time there'll be three of us going. We finally got the pool covered, things move slowly in WV. They were supposed to have had it done  by the last week in Sept and we were starting to get worried, especially since when David called he got the answering machine- during business hours. But while we were out they came and it's closed for the winter. I asked David if they'd left a bill and he said no, and we'll be paying with the same speed they employ. I'm feeling a bit better today, I had something, not enough to totally lay me out but enough to make me feel like crap and of course, not able to take a day off. I mean, technically I probably could have, but I didn't. I always worry when I call in sick - it makes me anxious so I simply don't do it very often. I've been with Interim for over a year and a half and haven't used one sick day so I hate to break my record over that.

Monday, October 9, 2006

Pearl The Backslider

We went to Cooper's Rock yesterday - the weather was perfect for it. We got there a bit later than usual and the first trail we hiked was the Henry Clay Furnace. Pearl was not a good citizen. When I was trying to take pictures of the furnace she wanted to GO NOW and in lieu of that, amused herself by hogtying herself with the leash. Then since it's 6 foot leash wrapped herself around me and then ran, effectively sending us both ass over teakettle and neatly laying us both out. We hiked the rest of the trail and then up to the upper trail which is where we did our backsliding. We've been walking the river trail for weeks and no problems, but I think because she can't see who's coming, we were back to putting our hair up and barking hysterically. I was really done in when she backed off a group of mennonites. And it was just on the trail - when we got back to the park she was back to greeting people and being friendly so I guess we're just going to have to work on it. Jackson had a good weekend too, we took him and Becky to Rich's Farm where they had the annual Fright Farm. This is thier website -

It is THE place to go at Halloween. We were informed on the way there that the "poor people" are forced to attend the Spook-tacular at Stepping Stones because that's all they can afford. I didn't point out that most poor people arent' overly concerned about haunted houses, but then again I'm sure thier view on poverty is a bit different than mine. It's a huge event because everyone really does go there for Halloween, they have a hay ride, they built a haunted mansion on the property and add to it yearly, there's a corn maze and bands playing so it's quite something. When we came to pick them out there were acres covered with cars and a line to get in so I'm glad we dropped them off early.

Saturday, October 7, 2006

Race You To The Thermostat!

Brr! The temps have dropped a lot, from the high 70's right down into the 60's and sent us scrambling for the thermostat this morning as it was in the 50's. Pearl had firmly planted herself between us and refused to move, I swear she changes the gravity field around her when you try to shove her off the bed (or at least off the pillow). Charger's a happy camper, anything above 70 is too hot for him. He's going to the groomer's on Monday, his nails are out of control and he needs to be neatened up a bit. He's gotten too fragile for me to lift into the tub anymore, between the lumps,bumps and arthritis there's no way I can do it without hurting him. He's slowed down a great deal over the summer, we try to keep Miss Thing at a low roar, he doesn't mind playing with her but he has his limits. I wish Copper had lived longer, sometimes it's so sad to see him without his friend. I wonder if he misses him or if he sees Copper in his dreams. . They were together for most of thier lives, I know he's a dog but it's got to be hard for him not to have his buddy anymore. Sometimes when Charger and Pearl are outside and I'm calling them in I call "Copper! Charger!" without even thinking about it. I miss Copper still - more than any of our other dogs and sometimes I cry over him when I know no one is looking. I think part of it is because he, Mr. Lee and Charger  are my last connections to Mikio and Setsu - they were so much a part of that time in my life that when Copper passed, it really brought back how much I miss Miki and Sets and how far away they become. Oh geez, I think that's enough of did I get on this subject?

Thursday, October 5, 2006

Is It Thursday Already?

Not much has been going on this week, it's raining again today but hopefully will clear up for the weekend. They're figuring out the call schedule for work - we had a bit of a "snafu"* at work when Ray was down. I got a call from my job telling me I had to work Sunday - I was a little upset. I ended up calling Susan and she agreed - as did Kevin that I was NOT, but apparently it's not written down anywhere between the two offices. The other nurse refused to go out and it was a bit stinky. So now it's been written down and I'm off this weekend and on next which is ok. If it's nice Pearl and I will be out at Cooper's Rock hanging with the bears and squirrels. The next park I'm considering is  this one, doesn't it look just super cool and I CAN bring my dog -

 I know that because I wrote to the park and they said yes you can - I love in WV that if you write to anyone they'll immediately write back and let you know. So we're all clear on that end but the only problem is it's about 60 miles from here and I don't know if Pearl is up to such a big road trip quite yet. She can sit nice for Coopers, but that's only about 15 miles from here. The tempeture finally dropped today - last night was awful - hot and humid. I woke up at midnight soaked, so I threw open the window, threw the comforter off and then ix-nayed the dog to her own bed. I'll be glad when it's really fall and winter.

* Do you know what "snafu" really means? A friend of mine told me it's an old military acronym which stands for Situation Normal All Fucked Up

Monday, October 2, 2006

Who Doesn't Like Buckwheat?!

Ray went home this morning after a fun filled weekend in WV - he did have a good time. We went out to the Buckwheat Festival Sunday morning, I was a little disappointed as Saturday is the big day - with the livestock judging and stuff, but with the weather so iffy, we took what we could get. We got there around 10 and went into the Budwieser Clydesdale team tent - they ARE HUGE - their backs are taller than me! Jackson was petting them, they're beautiful and all perfectly matched. After we made our way to the firehouse for the thing we all came for -buckwheat pancakes. I was glad I hurried everyone along, we had to wait for a few minutes but by 10:30 the line went all the way around the firehouse and out the door. They're very well organized though and it moves right along. The second you get up, the local high school volunteers descend on the table and about 10 seconds later it's ready for the next wave. I gave my sausage to David and Jackson but ate all my pancakes. Ray was a bit taken aback by the whole thing, but I don't think he's ever eaten in a firehouse with several hundred people -  I do try to find things for him to do that he's never done before so he can cross that one off his list. We did the exhibit tent of all the entries and winners and then the arts and crafts where you can buy stuff. Ray was disappointed - his mission was to get REAL buckwheat flour - and they were sold out!! But on the way home we stopped at the rt 7 market in Reedsville and they had it, so the day was saved. We went out to Garfield's for dinner, I havent been there in awhile and Ray really loved it. The food there is pretty good but you've got to be in the mood for it (it's a bit bright) and make sure the tiny shriekers are home and not sitting at the table across from you. Ray left this morning around 8 am and called this afternoon to let us know he's home. But he did have a great weekend - and so did we.

Sunday, October 1, 2006

Rained Out

Pearl has not been the best dog this weekend. She's not happy at being left behind and since we put all the shoes up, papers away, etc she's been raiding the kitchen for various things to fling around the house. Yesterday it rained off and on (mainly on) so we decided to go shopping in Clarksburg and out to breakfast. While we were out Pearl found a large bag of sugar. First she put it on the couch to consider where it would look best. Then she poured it all over the middle of the living room and scampered through it a few times. She hid under the coffee table in an effort to make us think perhaps there had been some other hooligan involved or it was an outside job, but we weren't fooled. Later we went out to have dinner, we tried the Japanese hibachi restarant, where they stir fry on a big grill right in front of you. We've never done that and it was different, you sit in a line around the grill with other people. But it was fun and chef was really good - he did this thing where he grilled and flipped shrimp right into people's mouths - Jackson loved it. Our chef had good aim, the other side's chef did not and managed to hit a few people in the face with dead shrimp. Eww. Since this IS West Virginia it could've been worse - he could've been tossing stir fried possums so they should be grateful it was only shrimp. (only kidding!).We did the bookstore and got home around 8pm. Since Pearl had run out of sugar (at least sugar she could get to) she decided to decorate the house with plums and mini peppers  - she did a fairly good job considering she doesn't have much to work with. We also found a pair of scissors on the floor since we hid the steak knives so she couldn't get to them. David would like to start crating her while we go out - which by the way I had wanted to do when she was a puppy and he announced he'd never had a dog he had to crate and never would - I told him at this point it would be very difficult as she's almost a year old. I think it has more to do with the fact we have company this weekend and she's being left behind. Usually we're out hiking and stuff so I think it will be a wait and see until next week.