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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in isle_of_woman's LiveJournal:

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Monday, July 14th, 2014
3:00 pm
Midlife blahs
I used to think I loved working nights. Then I got a day shift for about a year. It was nice to feel like part of the human race again, being able to dinner with people, etc. My work schedule has shifted yet again to nights. (I can't escape!) I realized that since I started with this company in April 2013, I have held four different positions/shifts. It's wearing on me now. My new job is fine, a little better suited to my temperament actually, but it brings back the old working-nights-incredibly-lonely-isolated blues again. Part of it is the working climate over here vs. at the LB Register. We had a really collegial group and were always chatting, joking. I miss that!

Now part of the blues blitz this may have something to do with the fact that I'm not super great about making sure I take the antidepressants every day. (Maybe subconsciously because they really mess with my function in certain areas.) I really notice if I am off of them for a few days, because I get really snappy and irritable. So yeah, improve Jody.

I think it's also a function of feeling very close to anyone in my current social circle at the moment. I see a regular group pretty regularly, and it's good, but it feels very superficial. I did go down to Encinitas for part of "Friendcation" this year to feel more a part of things. (They do this once a year, and go to a nice resort within a couple of hours driving distance from the L.A. area) It was lovely there at the resort, but it partly served to reaffirm how much they are all part of a different socioeconomic class than me.

More than 90 percent of the women in this group don't work, but they live really comfortable lives and get to travel a lot and don't (appear) to have to worry about every penny. Their husbands really seem to care for them and make sure they are treated well. I can't say I'm not jealous. Even when married, that was not the kind of husband J. was. I love working and being able to support myself, but I'm certainly not able to participate in all the things many of my married or coupled friends can. The pay-to-play scenario is tough to cope with sometimes.

It's not all whining, there is good stuff, too. I still have a job, slightly closer to home, no pay cut, better title. Learning something new to add to the resume, which I love to do.

I got to join the boy and his schoolmates over spring break to travel to Baltimore and D.C., which was fun! It was a lot of time in a van, but the school really made an effort to make it a thrifty trip so the outlay of money was minimal. We got to stay in private homes, so no hotels. I had a nice big bed all to myself, which I wasn't expecting and our hosts were gracious and accommodating.

We saw the memorials/monuments: Jefferson, FDR, King, Lincoln, the Vietnam Wall. Some of the museums: Smithsonians, National Portrait Gallery, etc. Had lunch with an old friend. Got rained on and saw snow! Stood on the edge of an 18 Century fortress. Saw the original "Old Glory" and Abe Lincoln's top hat. Squeezed through a busy public market in Philadelphia. Stood on the place were 20,000 plague victims were buried. Learned about the end of slavery and how Quakers played a role in ending it. Sat in a silent Meeting of Friends. Was showered with cherry blossoms. And mostly, spent time with the kid.

Two other big things loom on the horizon this year: My big 4-0 and the trip to the UK. I think the 40 milestone is more in my own mind. I think I need to use it as an excuse to really make an effort to get fit and healthy. I sit waaay too much. When I was Irish dancing, I certainly felt slimmer and better. I would love to do that again. We shall see. At the least, I will join up some kind of fitness group or class. Something must be done.

The UK trip is in October and I will get to see some dear friends who are living out there. It as yet seems unreal, but I need to do some serious planning to find out what I really want to see and what's possible. My friends are living in the center of the country and so London is about 2 hours south. It's so exciting. It's certainly always something I've wanted to do, and to do it with two good friends who are "locals" now will be so much the better. It doesn't seem real yet. I think I'll pick up a guidebook.

And next week, I will be visiting Sean and Karen and seeing some of the Strangies crew! So looking forward to it, and since it's furlough, I will be able to stop by for more than just a weekend. Sounds like, as ever, Sean has some wonderful things planned and maybe we even hit an aquarium and a museum. It's always a good time when I visit Toronto, which is starting to feel like a second home to me. It will be my seventh trip out there in as many years. Craziness.

Well, that was longer than I planned. It's good to get it out there. I should journal more, especially if no one is watching. :)

Current Mood: contemplative
Saturday, June 18th, 2011
1:22 am
There's not a lot to love about commuting. The traffic, the time wasted, the monotony. Mine, which is about 17 miles one way, is certainly not as bad as most people in L.A. have to deal with. I can usually avoid the freeways.

It takes me about 45 minutes to get to work, not too bad considering what it could be. But coming home is another matter. That's actually my favorite part of the day. I leave the office usually about 10:30 p.m. and the streets are much more hospitable then. The best thing about the drive home is the portion where I drive over the Whittier hills. I start to climb up gradually once I turn away from the 60. The smells of exhaust, the noise of the roads for the most part falls away. The lights change from bright white to phosphorescent orange and become farther apart and the homes recede.

If I roll down my windows, I can start to smell the cool night air, which is a blend of sage, something sweet and chamomile-like, wet loam and sometimes eucalyptus. As I crest the hill, the hills cleave and the entire L.A. basin, it seems, is spilled out before me, a billion tiny orange and white lights twinkling in the blackness, until they stop at the coast. I can see a  stadium, traffic signals and red flashing beacons.

And as I begin my descent, I am welcomed into my hometown to the scent of night-blooming jasmine, planted all the way down Colima by the fountain and the "Whittier Welcomes You" sign. I'm home and ready for whatever the night has for me.

The view from above
Sunday, June 5th, 2011
4:56 pm
I like serendipity
A couple cool things made me glad I got out of bed and out of the house today.

First, against all sense, I got to dance class on time (!) and there was a used book sale there in the church where we practice. Score! I got three for me, including one I had wanted to read and no one seemed to have to lend, and then one for James by a favorite author and two for H. All for 5 bucks! And I was still feeling low on gas, but since we got booted from our room for the book sale, we were in another room, which we required we wear our sneakers and "take it easy" on the tiles. Fine by me, as I had to go to work from there.

I ran out of time to pack a lunch, so I stopped at the Panera Bread near work for dinner break. When I came in, the manager guy said something like, "Good to see you again!" and I looked around, not sure he was talking to me. He kept saying hi as I made my way through the lineup, and I kept being sort of disquieted (I'm weird like that). When I went to check out, he said, "Didn't you used to come in here a lot, about two years ago?" I said I did, (but my co-worker and I have been bringing our lunches most days now) and he said, "Well it's our five year anniversary, and we're giving mugs to our regulars." It's a nice mug, too, like the kind you can buy at Starbucks. And here I thought he was trying to hit on me or something. :)

Today, we took Hunter to the Rock and Gem show and he was got himself a pretty cool geode from one of those stands where you pick an unopened one and they cut it open for you. He picked a good one! He was also oohing and ahhing over a lot of stuff in the dealer's room, in which there was some pretty spectacular stuff. I think I may have a rockhound on my hands...

Hunter&quot;s geode
Friday, June 3rd, 2011
1:44 pm
Missing the obvious
I wondered why my workout today was so tough. I had *no* gas for a workout that earlier in the week was no problem. I kept having to stop, like I'd been running for miles. After I got home, I was talking about how lousy I was feeling then James pointed out, "You gave blood yesterday." Oh. Yeah. Geez. I had forgotten!

I guess I did the opposite of blood doping! Live and learn ... Hopefully things will be better next workout. I wonder how long I should've waited?

Current Mood: nauseated
Wednesday, June 1st, 2011
9:56 pm
Good stuff, tough stuff
I don't post here nearly enough. I guess it's more comfortable being a lurker. I also don't want to say too much on FB, because so many co-workers and family are there. And when I have a lot to say, I tend to clam up, paradoxically.

Ramblings and more ramblingsCollapse )

Current Mood: contemplative
Tuesday, March 31st, 2009
3:48 pm
What I've been up to ...
Now that things are getting back to normal, I figure it's time to post for a change. :)

As some of you may already know, work mandated that I take a five-day furlough as part of a way of reducing expenses. I just wrapped up my five days (sandwiched between two weekends) today. My house has not been so clean in quite a while - even though I nearly killed myself cleaning the shower (looong story). It was really nice to be away from work for nine days! I knew this was coming and was able to make plans to make the best use of the time.

What I did (longish)Collapse )

Current Mood: blah
Tuesday, January 20th, 2009
8:25 pm
What a day!
This morning, we got up early to watch the inauguration as a family unit. We involved H. in the voting process and wanted him to be a part of this historic event, too. So we are all piled in bed together, watching it, and we're describing various aspects of what's happening and at one point someone is discussing the theme of hope.

H. chimes in with, "Help me, Obama, you're my only hope!" And later on described Cheney as a Sith lord.

Yeah, my kid wins.

Current Mood: cheerful
Thursday, December 18th, 2008
9:24 pm
The happy day 8
* Having H. call me for no particular reason. Seeing him go off to school wearing his giant, red backpack.

* When the exective editor uses the words "breast fungus", "jock itch" and "Monistat vaginal cream" in the news meeting. He thought you were supposed to *drink* Listerine to get rid said problem. Um, no. We pretty much all died of laughter.

* I have the best co-workers. Even though things are crappy around the office and in the industry as a whole and expected to only get worse, we can all still go out for coffee and have great conversations and enjoy a good laugh together. I hope too many of us don't get laid off after the holidays. I may also get back to doing some writing/reporting again. We shall see.

Current Mood: dorky
12:29 am
The happy, days 6 and 7
Day 6

* Seeing the kitchen progress. Goony, I know. It's taking shape faster than I thought it would.

* Having a thoughtful J. bring me scones and coffee when I woke up.

* Having a leisurely lunch w/ J. at El Cholo. Pomegranate margarita! :)

* Browsing in the overpriced Xmas boutique. It was pricey, but oh-so-sparkly.

* Listening to my grandpa talk about his college days with some emotion. Seeing him hold grandma's hand.

* Chocolate-raspberry cake.

Day 7

* Drinking warm chocolate-mint coffee on a cold, rainy morning.

* Getting to work in the middle of a party. We didn't get any work started until 5, but who cares?

* Secret Santa extravanganza with the co-workers and all the goodies we could handle. OK, maybe too many goodies.

* Getting to chat with a dear friend. ;)

I realized that I like focusing on the positives for a change and maybe will continue this for a few more days.

Current Mood: sleepy
Monday, December 15th, 2008
10:31 pm
The happy, day 6
 Lots of good ones today:

* Falling asleep and waking up to rain - and lots of it. It made it a morning for my fuzzy robe, which always cheers me up.

* A package in the mail. I don't know why getting a parcel in the mail is so happy-making, but there it is.

* An especially pleasant dinner with a good friend I don't get to see often enough.

* Playing Munchkin Bites with H. (He's a gamer geek in training, apparently.) We each won one.

* Geekitude in general.

* Vanilla-scented candles and the weather in which to use them.

* Hugs! And Mexican chocolate.

Current Mood: content
12:17 am
The happy, day 5
The view driving up and down the Vincent Thomas bridge.

Making H. laugh and having him jump into my arms and give me a million kisses.

Being told I am loved and that I'm lovable (by two different people).

A double chocolate cookie!

Seeing the full moon behind clouds and feeling the cold wind blowing in and smelling the wet earth, figs and damp mulberry leaves.

Current Mood: awake
Sunday, December 14th, 2008
12:17 am
The happy, day 4
 This one's easy: A delicious dinner with good friends. My boy and his lovey ways. I'm really lucky.

Current Mood: happy
Saturday, December 13th, 2008
5:16 am
The happy, day 3
There were a lot today, but here's one:

Seeing H all bouncy and happy because he got to take his "friend" — his Venus flytrap — to school for Sharing. When he got home, he was excited because Trapper was deemed cool enough to get put on the Science Table and left there *all day.* It was also discovered that it had finally eaten a few flies. We could tell because one little fly head was still sticking out ....

Also, he got a letter from Santa in the mail. :)

Current Mood: Awake, sorta
Thursday, December 11th, 2008
7:00 pm
The happy, day 2
Well, my day's not over yet by a long shot, but here's a happy moment so far:

J & I went to See's to pick up a little holiday something-something and got it and stood in line. Meanwhile, the happy employees gave us a free sample. And then another. And then another. They were just shoving chocolate down our collective gullets! For free! By the time we left, we had a handful of the good stuff to cart home. I guess the saying is true, give and you shall recieve - a lot of free candy!

More from "The Random Stuff My Kid Says That I Find Hilarious, Even Though You Probably Don't Dept."

So the other morning, H. comes in and as usual comes into the room. He locks the door behind him and climbs into bed with me. He's bugged about something and I ask him what's wrong. He won't say, then finally I get from him, "I'm mad." Why, I ask. He replies, "Let's just leave it at mad."

Then, last night, James was making him dinner and was using the big, burrito-sized tortillas, which apparently we don't buy that often because H. kept questioning J., "Are those for real?" and "Do people really eat those?" and finally deciding, "Those should be on 'Man vs. Food'!"

Current Mood: happy
Wednesday, December 10th, 2008
8:52 pm
Stolen from Okoshun
Because it's a sweet idea!

For eight days, post something that made you happy that day.

Going to the candle store to shop for Christmas loot. I love smelling the food-scented offerings. Plus, J. got busted for lighting one of the displays. Hee hee!

Current Mood: silly
Thursday, November 6th, 2008
1:28 am
History in process
It's been a crazy 24 hours and I think I am still processing it all. Overall, happy and sad. Mostly happy.

We took Hunter out of school so he could come and vote with us. I think it was the right decision, getting him some idea of what the process is like so that he can understand its import and value. He did go to a No on 8 rally with James on Sunday. On both days, he seemed to have fun. It was also nice to spend the morning with him for a change. I voted in my old elementary school (as I'm still registered at my parent's address), which was interesting to see again, with my child in tow. It looks so small now, but so much the same.

Voting mission accomplished, I headed to the newsroom for my third presidential election as a journalist. It's been an interesting place to be on election night. It's changed a little each time, with the Internet playing more and more of a role in results, as is to be expected. In my opinion, it's still the place I'd most like to be on this particular night, the feeling of anticipation, the debates and talk among the co-workers, watching, wanting to be a part while still getting what needs to get done on the shrinking deadline. Answering the phones from the public (and excited co-workers off-site) while reading a story, IMing with the other newsroom, figuring out photos/headlines with the bosses, making sure photogs got images in and reporters got stories done on time, (Facebooking,) and watching CNN. It's crazy, but a good crazy. I was at work until after 1 a.m., but on that night, eating chewy pizza, cookies and cokes, it seemed right, somehow.

I found myself a bit emotional watching the candidates give their respective speeches. (I wasn't alone in that, either.) I just kept thinking about Martin Luther King's dream and how his children and grandchildren were watching it happen. About those who fought so long for the right even to vote and how it was their moment. The jubilation of a people, a country, who had put aside race for a moment and picked the president based on the content of his character. No, he's not as liberal as I'd like, but I picked Obama because I think he's a decent, intelligent, principled man who wants to do good for the country. Maybe I will be proven wrong, but I sure hope not. At least there is not a Republican about to take office. I can't imagine that.

I was, however, very disappointed in California's approval of the ban on gay marriages. I couldn't believe it and kept checking tallies all night. I didn't realize we were so backward. The legal challenges have already begun, so perhaps there is something to hope for. I know I don't want H. to grow up in a place that has rights for some, but not all. The religious right is really scaring me. It's like we haven't learned our lessons from history and continue to repeat bad, intolerant patterns based on ignorance and fear. So many people just didn't see past - didn't care to see past - the weak arguments supporters had for this. At least it was close in L.A. County. My co-worker said it made her want to apologize to her friends who are gay. I agree. *Hugs to you all - We're not all close-minded haters!*

All in all, whatever their views, it was incredible to see so many people care so much about politics and getting involved in the election process, many for the first time. It's democracy! In L.A. County, the turnout of registered voters was slightly above 82 percent, which was high, but not a record. Wow. We can honestly say the people have spoken.

And then today, I could not find a newspaper anywhere. Nor could anyone else, apparently. We sold out of our paper in three hours today and had people calling the newsroom all day and all night looking for today's paper. It was the same with many other papers today, at least that's what the wires said. After our public office closed, I kept taking copies down to the lobby. I gave away my last two papers at 10:30 p.m. as I was headed home. Sure, it would have been easier to tell people we were out - but hey, they are interested and reading our paper! My work - at least for one day - will be a part of their history. And that's kind of awesome.

Current Mood: happy!
Sunday, October 26th, 2008
8:15 pm
Content, shmontent! Or, "Facts Are Fun!"
Look up the date of your birthday in Wikipedia. From the date page, pick three interesting historical events, births and deaths that occurred on that date.

1707 - Last recorded eruption of Mount Fuji in Japan.
1773 - American Revolution: Boston Tea Party - Members of the Sons of Liberty disguised as Mohawks dump crates of tea into Boston harbor as a protest against the Tea Act.
1965 - Vietnam War: General William Westmoreland sends U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara a request for 243,000 more men by the end of 1966.

1485 - Catherine of Aragon, Queen of England (d. 1536)
1770 - Ludwig van Beethoven, German composer (d. 1827)
1775 - Jane Austen, English writer (d. 1817)
(Oooh, and...
1866 - Wassily Kandinsky, Russian-born French abstract painter (d. 1944)
1917 - Sir Arthur C. Clarke, English writer (d. 2008)
1928 - Philip K. Dick, American writer (d. 1982))

1859 - Wilhelm Grimm, German writer and folklorist (b. 1786)
1921 - Camille Saint-Saëns, French composer (b. 1835)
1980 - Colonel Sanders, American fast food entrepreneur (b. 1890)

Current Mood: full
Wednesday, October 15th, 2008
8:45 pm
All the meme-age ever ...

Catching up on memes put out by my lovely LJ pals bigevil , apricotica  and professor_booty :


1. Put your iTunes/Ruckus/Napster/etc on shuffle.
2. For each question, press the next button to get your answer.
3. You must write down the song it says, no matter how silly.

The Mountains Win Again - Blues Traveler

A Shoulder to the Wheel - Bel Canto

Centerfold - J Giels Band

You're Pretty Good Looking - The White Stripes

Wild World - Cat Stevens

People are People - Depeche Mode

Upside Down - Jack Johnson

Parents Just Don't Understand - DJ Jazzy Jeff (OK, creepy!)

Your Body is a Wonderland - John Mayer

WHAT IS 2+2?
Canon in D for Strings and Continuo - Pachelbel

Yes - Coldplay

Breathe Me - Sia

Unwritten - Natasha Bedingfield

My Boyfriend's Back - The Raveonettes

No More Sweet Music - Hooverphonic

Portions for Foxes - Rilo Kiley

Life in a Northern Town - The Dream Academy

Try and Love Again - The Eagles

Biscuit - Portishead

Imperial March (Rage March) - Star Wars: Force Commander

It's True That We Love One Another - The White Stripes

Breakdown - Michael Brook

A Message - Coldplay

A Sorta Fairytale - Tori Amos

Love Fool - The Cardigans

Destroy Everything You Touch - Ladytron

Already Gone - The Eagles

All the Young Dudes - Mott the Hoople

Humanity - A Guy Called Gerald

Friend is a Four-Letter Word - Cake

Breakfast Blues - Trout Fishing in America

Boom Boom Ba - Metisse

Comment and I will....

a) Tell you why I friended you.
b) Associate you with something -- a fandom, song, color, photo, etc.
c) Tell you something I like about you.
d) Tell you a memory I have of you.
e) Ask you something I've wanted to know about you.
f) Tell you my favorite userpic from your list.
g) In return, you need to post this on your own LJ.

Random Quizzage

First name:
Summarize me in one sentence:
Where did we meet?
Take a stab at my middle name?
How long have you known me?
When is the last time that we saw each other?
Do I drink?
Do I smoke?
Do I do drugs?
Am I happy?
Am I a good person?
What was your first impression of upon meeting me/seeing me?
What's one of my favorite things to do?
What do I love more than anything?
Am I funny?
Have you ever made me smile ... if so when?
What's my favorite type of music?
Have you ever seen me cry?
Can I sing?
What is the best feature about me?
Am I shy or outgoing?
Am I a rebel or do I follow the rules?
Do I have any special talents?
What is a word that describes my personality?
Have you ever hugged me?
Kissed me?
What is my favorite food?
Am I a good cook?
Am I dating anyone?
If there was one good nickname for me, what would it be?
What's your favorite memory of me?
What is my worst habit?
Do I like corn dogs?
Have you ever had a dream about me?
If you and I were stranded on a desert island, what is the one thing I would bring?
Are we friends?
What's my religion?
Am I family oriented?
Who is my best friend?

Current Mood: chipper
Tuesday, September 30th, 2008
11:03 am
Pic me!
They say a picture is worth a thousand words.
Post a picture in my comments of what you think describes me when you think about what/who I am.
Give no written explanation, though. Just an image.

And if you're new to this gig, the code is: [img src="url here"] except with greater than/less than signs, not brackets.

Current Mood: awake
Wednesday, August 6th, 2008
3:27 pm
So, Marcy had her surgery and it turned out to be laproscopic, which is good news! She was just getting out of the surgery about 1 p.m. and was going to be in recovery for a while when we headed out so I could go to work. But things look good. I'm sure there will be other updates from her, John or others soon!

Current Mood: happy
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