Book List 2015

This is late and short, but whatever, at least it’s here.
After viewing season 1 of Starz’s great take on Diana Gabaldon’s awesome Outlander series I decided it was time to re-read the books. That took up pretty much the whole year & I only got a little over halfway through the series as it stands now.

  1. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
  2. A Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon
  3. Voyager by Diana Gabaldon
  4. The Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon
  5. Also Began the Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon but didn’t finish it before New Years day.

2015 review

1. What did you do in 2015 that you’d never done before?
I successfully taught my 16 year old to drive a stick shift.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I resolved to wear mascara more often, that has not worked out as I have found I’m much more prone to eye infections than I used to be.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Nope, still not a grandmother at 47 & that’s quite all right with me!
4. Did anyone close to you die?
my favorite uncle did, he had brain cancer & my best friend’s mom, of stomach cancer.
5. What countries did you visit?
No other countries, barely even any other counties!
6. What would you like to have in 2016 that you lacked in 2015?
Again, more money
7. What dates from 2015 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Getting to see my middle daughter & playing cards against humanity with Lois’ future in laws.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
We haven’t had a single week at work where we had to wait to cash our paychecks until there was money in the bank!
9. What was your biggest failure?
I lost my house, even with the lower payments I just couldn’t swing it with my reduced hours & pay rate.
10. What was the best thing you bought?
Really nothing, just trying to make it.
11. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Cameron has been quite kind, helpful and sweet.
12. Whose behavior made you appalled and disgusted?
Congress
13. What song will always remind you of 2015
Take me to church by Hozier
14. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Reading
15. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Worrying
16. Did you fall in love in 2015?
Nope.
17. What was your favorite TV program?
The Outlander series on Starz.
18. What was the best book you read?
Diet land
19. What one thing would have made your year measurably more satisfying?
Money again!
20. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2015
Warm when it’s cold. Cool when it’s hot.
21. What kept you sane?
Who said I was sane?
22. Who did you miss?
Still Eric.
23. Who was the best new person you met?
Other than patients at work, I haven’t really met or gotten to know anyone really.
24. Tell us a valuable lesson you learned in 2015
I got nothing this year
25. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
We are all of us in the gutter, some of us are looking at the stars

Grandma Laing’s Stuffing Recipe

By “Grandma Laing” I’m speaking of my grandmother, whose maiden name was Laing’s, great grandmother. So her father’s grandmother.      For a 20 lb bird

3 cups of chopped onion approximately 1/2 inch square pieces

5, 14 oz bags of common crackers ground to penny size

3 sticks of butter

3 quarts of milk

8 eggs

1 teaspoon pepper

6 tablespoons salt

6 tablespoons bells poultry seasoning

after you chop the onions & break up the common crackers, mix together.

Put butter & milk in a pan & heat on stove to scalding hot.

Mix salt, pepper & bells seasoning together in a small bowl and sprinkle over cracker & onion mix.

Break eggs one at a time into cracker mix and stir between each eggs addition.

once milk is hot & butter melted pour in 1/2 cup increments into the cracker mix until blended.

let cool (preferably overnight)before stuffing the bird. Or cook in a casserole with the turkey, if you like turkey neck meat it is also good to pack stuffing around the turkey neck and bake them together

 

1. What did you do in 2014 that you’d never done before?
Went to Massachusetts & stayed in a hotel instead of with Family. Although of course, I had Cam, Lois & Av with me in the hotel.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I made a sort-of resolution to start wearing earrings daily again. While working at Dish, with a headset on my head all the time I was there, earrings were painful, I spend a lot of my free time making beaded earrings & it occurred to me that I ought to wear them since I don’t have to wear a headset daily.
This year, I’m planning to try to start wearing mascara daily again. My eyelashes are so light that my eyes disappear into my face with out mascara & I’d like to not look so washed out all the time.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Nope, still not a grandmother at 46 & that’s quite all right with me!
4. Did anyone close to you die?
Nope, not this year.
5. What countries did you visit?
No other countries, just Massachusetts for 4 days in July
6. What would you like to have in 2015 that you lacked in 2014?
Again, more money
7. What dates from 2014 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Nothing specific, obviously going to Massachusetts for a few days with the kids was awesome, all the holidays & multiple weekends visiting Lois & Av or having them over to our house were great. Labor Day weekend we put up the huge bookshelves that were my mothers & the main reason we took the trip to Mass. in the first place.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Work is getting smoother, we haven’t had a single week where we had to wait to cash our paychecks until there was money in the bank!
There is also the fact that I refinanced my house, decreased my mortgage payment by over $130. per month.

9. What was your biggest failure?
I’m not sure that there is anything specific, I did lose some weight, but I would have liked to lose more, we’re doing ok at work financially (which is the main focus of my job) but I would still have liked for us to do better.
10. What was the best thing you bought?
Nothing specific, I still have my house. So that’s good
11. Whose behavior merited celebration?
For the first semester of his Sophomore year at school, Cameron got all A’s & B’s in 2 out of 3 marking periods!
12. Whose behavior made you appalled and disgusted?
Politicians
13. What song will always remind you of 2014
Demons by Imagine Dragons.
14. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Gotten my Earrings out there in the public to be seen/purchased
15. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Worrying
16. Did you fall in love in 2014?
Nope.
17. What was your favorite TV program?
Sons of Anarchy, or maybe the new Outlander series on Starz.
18. What was the best book you read?
Written in My Own Heart’s Blood by Diana Gabaldon (Part of the Outlander series)
19. What one thing would have made your year measurably more satisfying?
Money again!
20. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2014
Warm when it’s cold. Cool when it’s hot.
21. What kept you sane?
Who said I was sane?
22. Who did you miss?
Still Eric.
23. Who was the best new person you met?
Other than patients at work, I haven’t really met or gotten to know anyone really.
24. Tell us a valuable lesson you learned in 2014
I think I knew this one before, but I’ve had to put it into practice more this year than in past years.  You can’t always tell what people are going through in their own lives which causes them to act-react the way they do & so you have to sometimes cut them some slack even when they’re rude, unprofessional or mean for no obvious reason.
25. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
Don’t mean to let you down, but I am Hell-Bound.

Book List 2014

1.  A Clash of Kings, George RR Martin
2.  A Storm of Swords George RR Martin
3.  A Feast for Crows George RR Martin
4.  My Own Hearts Blood, Diana Gabaldon
5.  Nickel And Dimed, Barbara Ehrenreich
6.   A Dance with Dragons George RR Martin
7.  NOS4A2 Joe Hill
Wow, another year where I barely read 5 books. Admittedly though, they were all very large, thick books at least!

Seems Like Old Times

I don’t always miss blogging, but I do more lately than I have in the past few years. The past few weeks have found me at the computer for at least an entire day of the weekend (my weekends are 3 days again, but my new job is only 32 hours a week, so I get the 3 days off, but it’s paid for with lower income – especially since the new job pays about half per hour than the old one- ) The weather lately has been bad enough, at least one day out of the 4 I work, that I miss work & so make it up from home, some on the day I miss & some more on the weekend. 3 or 4 hours at a time isn’t so bad & once I’ve been sitting here that long, Pinterest or Facebook sucks out most of the rest of the day from me without my even really noticing or minding (much)
The new job is cool, medical billing & office management for a very small doctor’s office, the doctor, one physician’s assistant, a medical assistant, a receptionist, myself all work 32 hours per week & we have one part time billing specialist who comes in most weeks one or two days, but she lives down a mountain from the office so sometimes even rain will keep her home. She’s got 3 kids, all born at nearly the same intervals as my kids were but where my youngest is now 14, her oldest is 14, so she’s got to worry about day care & school schedules and so doesn’t come in or works from home quite a bit just for the convenience. I do like the new job a lot more than the old one (except for the paychecks- although they have their perks in that we get paid weekly instead of every other week at the doctor’s office- I do love money coming in every week- even if it’s small amounts!)
What is going on with me isn’t really what I had planned to blog about, it was more about how long it can take me to “gear up” to a blog post now, it used to be I wrote at least 2 or 3 paragraphs every single night before going to sleep. Nearly daily, if not daily, I’d write & save it to continue the next night. Now I’ve got drafts sitting which are 3-4 months old, I mean to finish them, but they give me more trouble, it’s like pulling teeth to get the right words out, I think it may be more that I’m choosing the words a little more carefully than before, and at least one blog post, an in memoriam for a friend who died last summer is just hard to write, I’d known him 20+ years, through many different situations and stages in both of our lives and it’s slow going to write about that. I still haven’t even decided if that’s going to be a public or a private post, because I do private stuff too, and it’s just as difficult to write those too. Even though it seems to me it should be easier, because I don’t intend anyone to ever read the private ones, unless I die of course, then heaven knows what will happen to them, or who may read them but it won’t be my problem anymore!
So I’m still thinking about writing, I’m feeling a bit more interested in it lately, I keep telling myself after over a year on this 32 hour a week schedule, I ought to be doing more than facebooking & embroidering with all this spare time I’ve got now!

2013 The Year in Review

1. What did you do in 2013 that you’d never done before?
Lots of things, most relating to my job, I’ve learned a lot “on the fly” about medical billing, finances, payroll & multiple computer programs, all of which is useful knowledge.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Well I had said I would blog again more, that didn’t happen, the healthier thing, well I certainly feel better than I did last year, but I haven’t lost any weight so in the eyes of most, I’m not any healthier
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No one specifically close to me did but through work I see a few tiny babies occasionally now, which is always fun.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
yes, a friend of 20+ years died in August, I’m ok with it but his loss has popped out at me in a lot of weird ways since then.
5. What countries did you visit?
No other countries, I did leave Virginia, but only to go to North Carolina & pick my mother up at the airport in Charlotte, then to take her back there a week later after her visit in August, (the friend who died, did so while my mother was here which made for a very weird week in general)
6. What would you like to have in 2014 that you lacked in 2013?
Money again.
7. What dates from 2013 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
August 3 when Eric died, and the next day at Lois & Av’s for a cook out, with friends & family who knew Eric, plus my mother being there, that day was especially surreal. Also the holidays were memorable this year with Lois, Av & Cam of course.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I don’t think I really had one, maybe managing all the new challenges at the new job without losing my mind?
9. What was your biggest failure?
I do wish the job was going better, a small family practice Dr’s office is a hard business to run in this day & age.
10. What was the best thing you bought?
I like  my new smart phone better than my old one, it was free with my bonus points from U. S. Cellular though, so I didn’t exactly buy it.
11. Whose behavior merited celebration?
I’m very proud that Cameron (now 14) did the school marching and concert band all through the fall very well.
12. Whose behavior made you appalled and disgusted?
Congress and especially the congressman for my own district Morgan Griffith of VA I truly hope 2014 is the year we get rid of the do-nothing obstructionists.
13. What song will always remind you of 2013
pfffttt….. “What does the Fox Say” lol.
14. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Read, received money
15. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Take verbal abuse, wait.
16. Did you fall in love in 2013?
Nope.
17. What was your favorite TV program?
Sons of Anarchy
18. What was the best book you read?
A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness (also loved the second book in the series & am awaiting the third & final book this year)
19. What one thing would have made your year measurably more satisfying?
financial solvency
20. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2012
I tried to balance the teal, blue, green trend I’ve been on for a few years with a bit more purple.
21. What kept you sane?
Melatonin, at the least, no matter what chaos was going on, at home, at work, in the world around me, at least I could guarantee myself a good nights sleep every night.
22. Who did you miss?
Eric who died in August, and sort of because of his death, my father more, they were both Capricorns & when I missed my father I would often talk to Eric because he was analytical & thought about interesting, abstract concepts like my father did. Now I don’t really have anyone like that to talk to in my life (Lois’ boyfriend Av’s dad is similar, but I’m a little intimidated by him still)
23. Who was the best new person you met?
I like Cameron’s newest & closest friend’s mom pretty well. We share a Sons of Anarchy obsession so that’s something.
24. Tell us a valuable lesson you learned in 2013
Keep your friends close because you never know when you’ll see them again.
25. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫♪♫ I got nothin’