I guess I didn’t shout enough…

And I mean that in a good way. I’m here on the Hubby’s laptop, cuddled with Jockey on the Love Seat, updating Facebook, when another person asks me if I’m pregnant. So, here we go. Yes, I am. I am currently 17 weeks along and baby is doing fine. Due to two miscarriages over the last three years I have not been going to the rooftops shouting and screaming to the world about it. Even though this one is much further along than the others, I have other complications with my health that are making me slow waaayyyy down, and remain cautious. Hubby and I are happy, but after two losses, it’s difficult to tell everybody under the sun and sound really happy about it. I’m not stupid to think that something couldn’t happen between now and August that could cause me to lose the baby. We’re becoming more comfortable with this, the further along I get, but please don’t expect an advert in the paper and on the TV. Pretty much this entry and the last one are it.

As for me, my usual pain management has been a challenge. From morning sickness to my current problem, I’m lucky I still get myself out of bed some days. A fairly steady diet and excercise combined with Tylenol helped keep whatever pain I was feeling in check. Some days were better than others, but I was starting to see an increase in good days before I became pregnant. Now I’ve seen an increase in bad days. The baby and the changes in the body is putting pressure on the lower back which makes it difficult to stand for long periods of time. And now this week I’ve been in the ER and to the doctor’s trying to figure out why I’m not able to eat without feeling pain. The ER thought it was my gall bladder, and it would have been sound and could still end up being so. Why we say could still end up being that way is because there is a final test they cannot do while I’m still pregnant. I forget the name, but it deals with radiation and that’s a no-no right now. So Mr. Gall Bladder is being pushed to the back for now, and we’re looking at the possibility of ulcers or a problem with the pancreas. So I’m home till Tuesday so long as I feel better and can eat. Right now it’s mostly liquids with some soft foods. The heavier foods are not my friend right now, although I miss them and want them. Told Hubby that by Monday I want to eat popcorn. So yeah, I have an appetite, no nausea (except when the tummy is completely empty), and no vomiting. I want food, crave it, it just hurts once it hits the stomach. It sucks. And hopefully won’t last long.

That’s it in a nutshell. I will post up dates as I get them. Now it’s time for me to take my sleepy butt and rest. Plus the kids (who are excited) are about to step through the door from school. It’s report card day. Kinda happy, kinda dreading. Later all.

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Maybe it’s time for an update… Maybe.

Yeah, it’s been a while. Then again I’ve been kinda in and out of the loop for a few months now, and well… I’m probably gonna be that way for a while yet. For those not in the know (and I know there has to be some people I haven’t told yet, or they haven’t checked e-mails, etc) The Hubby and I are expecting what will be our last child. Yes, you read that right. I’m roughly four months along and though I’m feeling miserable and the timing has been crappy, I’m happy. I’m not going into detail about a lot of things with this yet, just know that for now things are looking up and I’m feeling more positive about it all, even though the pain that has been following me for damn near five years is making life miserable. Had morning sickness pretty bad for the better part of the first three months, and that is working its way out of my system, though it’s leaving some remnants Meat, something I love to eat dearly, is a bit of an adversary right now, especially chicken and pork, and red meat is not far behind. I can stomach certain kinds of each, but they change and it drives me up the wall (and poor Hubby, too). Any heavily seasoned food (or if certain seasonings are used, like Rosemary) I can’t tolerate. And the list goes on. I’m hoping the further along I get, the more I can go back to eating. When I was pregnant with the Youngest it was touch and go. Towards the end of it though, I could eat almost anything, but at the same time I wasn’t feeling good at all and didn’t feel like eating a whole lot :(.

Sadly, due to a combo of the pain and the pregnancy, I’ve had to cut my hours back at work. Since I can’t stand for long periods, or do anything too strenuous, I haven’t been able to do my normal regimen of dealing with the pain. No workouts, though a few stretches here and there have been fine, but anything else, and I begin to not feel good. And everyday about the same time, my lower back starts in on me (whether I work or not, but it is worse on the days where I’m on my feet more) and it causes cramping to start if I don’t sit down and relax for a bit. I go into the doctor today, so hopefully we’ll have more info and/or ideas on what is going on and how we can better handle it. I know if I have to, I’ll stay home for the remainder of the pregnancy, but I would prefer not to. Finances can’t handle that, and in South Carolina, pregnant women can’t get disability except in special cases and then you have to wait forever to receive the money, so it’s not even worth trying for it. I am just very grateful that I have an understanding enough boss that he’s gone to bat for me to make sure that I can still get some hours and keep my job. He could have just said, nope, don’t think so, but he didn’t. We both prefer me to be able to work more hours, but my health and the baby’s health are factors here.

And for the love of all the gods, please! If you know where I live, don’t stop by anytime soon! The place is a wreck. *hangs head down in shame* I have a small time frame in the morning where I feel well enough to be able to do things, and most of the time I am working during that. I have gotten to where on some days I can do stuff in the afternoons, but I never count on those. The kids do help out, but they have school work to concern themselves with, so I try to make sure they don’t have a whole lot to do. But it still feels like I’m way behind. The zoo does help though. Which has not been as fun as it sounds.

Onto other news. Went to Columbia yesterday to meet up with family, and even though we didn’t go to the zoo like we had hoped, we had a nice lunch at Macaroni Grill. You see, my mother-in-law was talking to her mother-in-law about the time Hubby and I took the kids and more specifically about the lorikeet enclosure, where you can go in, feed them and they land on you and all kinds of hilarity ensues :). Since it was spring break for Grandpa (who is a teacher), they decided a trip from the mid-west to here was worth it to see family and to go to the zoo. Yeah, mother nature had other ideas! It rained, and it didn’t stop fully until after we left Columbia. It stunk, but it’s like we all said, there will be other times. It was great seeing everyone and even though I think we stressed out the restaurant (we were a group of 13), the food was good and the company was better. Just wish the rain had stopped sooner.

Youngest’s Girl Scout Troop is having a blast now with the cookie sales. They did pretty good with the pre-sales, and it seems we’re doing better than last year with the booth sales, which is great. This will help the Troop pay for a lot of things they have planned they’d like to do, and one thing they don’t know about yet ;). And I think it’s helped to get the older girls in the troop to get to know the newer ones a bit better. We have two more weeks left before the booths stop and the money has to be turned in. So far so good. And we’ve been doing better with the Cookies for Soldiers as well. For those not in the know, that’s where we take donations to send cookies to the Troops overseas so they can have a little bit of home. Last weekend, at our booth from 11-2, we raised round about $60 for the Troops. I think that was awesome. Upcoming events: camping, canoeing and a bunch of other things! We’re gonna be busy.

On the gaming front, I haven’t been playing nearly as much as I’d like to. Not feeling good is a major factor in that, and I’ve felt really bad about that, because it’s affected times I’ve set up with others to collect a few achievements in the games. Hopefully that will be changing. A friend and I have been trying and trying to get together for Fable III game time for the last week, and it’s me canceling each time. And we have Dragon Age II coming out tomorrow. Can’t wait for that, but I had hoped to have knocked out more Fable cheevoes before DA was released. Tonight is the last night for a little while, unless he and I both decide to take a break from Dragon Age… a very slim possibility, but doable. Oh, and is it November yet? Skyrim and Mass Effect 3 are out around that time. Yup, gonna have to win the lottery, or hope Hubby has best job ever so I can take November to December off from work. And not just for the holidays either ;).

The Computer from hell. As far as I’m concerned, from now on, unless it says Alienware on it, I don’t want it. Dell, how far you have fallen, truly. I cannot play Sims on this PC without having my old video card from the old PC in it, and the case is too short for the card, so the cover has to stay off. I found the video card that Dell swore up and down was perfect for my PC and it would fit. Well, it fit, BUT it wasn’t compatible with Windows XP. So I just will have to deal with not being able to play Sims for now. With all the cats we have it was not fun having the case to the PC open for the other card and it just really sucks right now. I can get the onboard video card to start the game, but the moment I try to do anything other than Create-A-Sim or load a household, it crashes due to the card. So, yeah. Grrr.

Haven’t started my garden yet, and in a way I’m glad. The weather has been wonky the last few weeks, between rain, freezes and lots of wind. It would have killed a lot of what I would have planted. I haven’t uncovered my irises yet, even though I have a lot of new growth peeking out. Will wait another week or so until we have more consistent weather. Don’t want happening what happened last year, with me loosing nearly everything to several days of hard rain. Not going to go as big as I wanted to this year, mainly because of money, but also I want to make sure it’s stuff I can handle while being pregnant. So the full on square foot gardening will have to wait for next year (along with my potatoes). But we did pick up two new planters to add to what we already have, a huge thing of soil and a bunch of seeds. Once I have everything planted I’ll list what all we have. Right now I can’t remember and am feeling lazy enough to not get up and get the seeds :P.

Besides being behind in house work, I’m behind in communications (e-mails, phone calls, Facebook msgs, etc.), the book and life in general. Not so much behind in the TV watching, as I can do that while laying down and resting. But I’m hoping to have a day this week where I can get caught up with it all, as there are a few people (one in particular) that I haven’t talked to in ages and really want to. Sadly, as one of my friends recently discovered, trying to reach me at night is no good. I’m typically not feeling too good or I’m sleeping standing up. So if you haven’t heard from me in ages, it’s not you. It’s me. Hoping to have all this evened out soon so I can be behind (as is normal), just not this far behind.

And if you didn’t already know, I have a moron for a dog. We’ve had to take to shutting the bedroom door during the day due to the Horde (Smoker, Tank and Ghost) spraying everywhere. We’ve been minimizing it and once we catch them or the mess, it’s cleaned up ASAP. A few spots we’ve had to move the furniture and get out the carpet cleaner, but tomorrow we will hopefully no longer have to worry about it. They are going to get fixed! It doesn’t totally stop them from doing it, as I have known some male cats to continue doing it. And the Hordlings go in next week as well. Yay! So what does this have to do with Vader being a moron? Well, I mentioned we closed the bedroom door, right? My moronic dog (how I love him though) has figured out that if he pushes on it enough, he can force the door open! And in the process he’s injured his snout pretty bad. It’s raised up almost like a bug bite, but there is no skin on it. A nice little, circle spot on his snout near his nose. And Vader continues to try to open the door (when we don’t have the grate in front of it), further injuring it. I’ve been cleaning it up and putting first aid cream on it (a kind just for puppies and kitties), but if he keeps this up I’ll have to take him to the vet, and frankly, I’d like to be able to pay my bills this month. So yeah, Vader is my moronic, yet lovable puppy.

Originally started this blog about 6:30 this morning and wanted it done and posted long before now, but we had an accident this morning. The girls have been doing the litter boxes full-time now, since I can’t even really look at one till after the baby is born. It was Youngest’s turn to do them this morning, and on her way in from taking the old litter out, she slipped and fell on the porch. Poor kid. She’s fine now (and hopefully will continue being that way) and up at school, but it was scary for a few minutes there. At first we were gonna take her to the ER, but we knew nothing was broken (that we could tell) and it wasn’t acting like it was sprained. So I took her up to school, and into the nurse’s office. The nurse checked her out and said she should be fine, but will help keep an eye on her. She also recommended we bring up some Tylenol and a brace, just in case. So after I helped her get into her first class, I went off to Wally World, and picked up some for her, along with a bag for her to carry her books around in. At her school they have what they call blocks. They still have the traditional periods, but they are grouped up into blocks, and during those blocks, they cannot stop and go to their lockers. So to make it easier on the kids, we get them smaller bags to help carry their stuff around in. Well, this child has been through many of them, and they never lasted long. The last little bit I’ve made her go without. Well, after seeing all the books she has to carry just to first block, I picked her up a bag. It’s similar to a messenger bag, a lot sturdier (I hope!) than the canvas bags she had before, and cost much less than all the other bags did. Let’s see how long this one lasts. I took all that up to the school for her. Hope the rest of her day goes well. This kind of reminded me of the time Oldest sprained her wrist during Colour Guard. Damn kids need to stop doing all this.

Had planned on doing a bunch of chores this morning before heading out to the doctor’s for my appointment. But, I may have to forgo some of it. Not feeling to well now :(. Guess it was too exciting this morning. Guess I’ll go and rest for a bit and see how I feel before doing anything.

Snow Day for all!

Schools in our area are closed today and tomorrow. I was not able to get to work this morning, either. And not for lack of trying. I did manage to get it out the drive way, but making all the way up the hill- not happening. When tires start slipping and spinning and wanting to throw you into someone else’s home, it’s time to pack it up. So we have spent a lot of the day outside, playing. A few chores were done, but mostly just playing. I have a few photos up on FaceBook. Might put the videos up there later too. And yes, Snow Puppy is having the time of his life with this stuff! I think he’s been more insistent on going outside than the kids! Now, as far as work goes, call outs were 100%. Bossman has been at the store since 2AM and might be going home soon, unless the higher-ups tell him to go ahead and get a hotel room. So there is a chance the store will be closed again tomorrow. And not by anyone’s choice. It’s already started sleeting and freezing rain here, so if it continues, conditions are going to get very icy and then I won’t make it up the hill at all. Already talked to the Bossman about that. I will be there if I can get up the blasted hill. Might be the only one, though….

In other news, we watched How to Train Your Dragon today with the kids. Youngest got it over the holidays and this is the first chance we’ve had to sit and watch it. As someone who is Heathen and Asatru, surprisingly, I loved it! Only a few nitpicks here and there, but overall, very good, especially for a kids movie. Then again, I love dragons too, so that may have had something to do with it :). Youngest said the whole thing was her favorite when I asked her which part she liked best. So, very cool. Do recommend it, Heathen or no.

Haven’t really broached the gaming subject in like forever. Been playing Fable 3 and World of Keflings mostly, mixed in with Your Shape Fitness Evolved. Really have not been feeling too well over the last month, with being sick and all, so not much working out has occurred, but I do try for once a week. I think that’s better than nothing. And with this one, you don’t have a trainer yelling at you for not being there. I kinda like that. With Fable 3 I am working on my Prince character (have 2 Princesses already) and trying to play this one a little more evil. It’s hard to do, when my first instinct is do the right thing, especially if the kids are watching me play. He actually has three wives and two kids already. Working on the Henry VIII achievement there. Have six spouses as a monarch and kill two of them. Yup. World of Keflings has been fun, but much more tedious than Kingdom for Keflings. Much harder to get achievements with. And to get blueprints to build more buildings. Still, it’s fun and worth the points I paid for it.

Games coming out this year I can’t wait for: Dragon Age 2, Elderscrolls V: Skyrim and Mass Effect 3. Dragon Age 2 comes out in March and the rest in November and December. Gonna have to take those two months off to play :). The one I can’t wait for the most, though, and at the same time am apprehensive about is Skyrim. There is a lot of talk about making it an MMO. My major problem with MMO’s in general is you pay for the game initially and then you have a monthly fee you have to pay in order to keep playing the game. I stay away for that reason alone. If you want an example of an MMO for those not in the know, World of Warcraft is perhaps the most popular and well-known one out there. Of all time. Yeah, I’ve toyed with the idea of trying it, but then we come to the money. And here we start my reasoning behind it:

Yes, I do have an XBOX Live Gold account, which allows me to play the multiplayer portion of the games on the XBOX. HOWEVER, it’s not a fee for just ONE game and it allows me to do so much more than just play games. Often times Gold Members see little perks, like early or exclusive releases for Marketplace items, etc. We also get access to Netflix, FaceBook, Twitter, Last.FM and ESPN on our consoles. I think Zune is available to all members, Silver and Gold. And Hubby and I rarely ever pay full price for our Accounts either. Right around the holidays they have sales that we catch. One year we each got our Accounts renewed for $30 each.

An MMO is not like that. In most cases you cannot play the game without paying the monthly fee. And if you can play it, then you have very limited access. And that fee is for ONE game only. I’ve heard a rumor two about games from the same company maybe offering joint fees at a discount, but I have yet to see anything. If anyone knows different, feel free to let me know. When you have a family of four where they are all gamers to some degree, it is not economical for us to pay a fee for everyone to play the same game. Especially when in most cases it has to be on the same computer. We’ve run into the problem a few times with certain DLC from the XBOX, but it’s been easily resolved. It’s not so easy in MMO’s. If we were rich, I still wouldn’t want to pay so many separate fees. And Hubby feels the same way.

So when they keep brining up MMO with Skyrim, it makes me very nervous, especially since I’ve been waiting about 3 years for this game. I’m a huge fan of the Elderscrolls games, having started with Morrowind. And if we have to pay an extra fee to play this game, in addition to our Gold Memberships, then I will be most upset. It’s why I didn’t play the one Final Fantasy Game a few years ago. I have a family and they come before my hobby. So I am hoping when Game Informer comes out with its newest issue, and it’s promise of a nice huge spread on the game, that more information will be out for me to find out. If it’s got extra fees, other than the DLC releases, then it’s a no go. Especially if we have to pay a separate one for each of us. There are 3 definites to play the game and one maybe. If they go with the standard $10 – 15 fee, then we’re looking at $40-60 each month that could be going towards food, clothes, bills, etc. So, here’s hoping.

Guess that’s it for now. I’m going to make some Potato Soup for dinner tonight and hope that I can get to work in the morning. Hope everyone is enjoying the snow!

It’s the New Year, and so far it’s been eh.

We’re, what, nine days into 2011? Yeah, nothing really to write home about yet. Maybe in a few weeks or months. Who knows what it’ll bring.

Snow will be hitting the area tonight and into tomorrow, changing over to ice/rain/snow mix. Now, this is nothing against the South, as having lived here for round about a decade now, I understand why some things are the way they are. But, it still drives my Yankee ass up the wall when I see people go into full on panic mode when they hear “snow”. They have to rush to the grocery store and buy all the bread and milk they can muster up. Hope they have a back up generator for the fridge when the power goes out, if it does. Otherwise they’re out about $4 per gallon they bought. And I hope they have something like PB&J or something else to put on that bread if the power goes out. It honestly hurts my brain when I think of some of the things that people do when they think they’re getting ready for an emergency. Especially when they are doing things not totally smart (not wrong, just not smart) and then don’t even think about how long snow actually lasts around here. Not long at all. Unless the storm is very bad, I doubt Tuesday afternoon will be too bad roadwise. And I believe there will be stores open. With plenty of food to resupply you.

The only time I’ve ever seen either one of my parents freak out over a storm was back in 1996 when we were hit by a lot of snow storms in early January and then the temps heated up and it rained, followed by more snow. It was a mess, but even then, they weren’t THAT panicked. It was mostly the flooding that worried them, and the fact that we had acquired a basement pool that was inching closer and closer to the outlet box. I grew up in the Catskill Mountains of New York State (not City). Snow was very common there. A little flooding wasn’t uncommon. But nearly everybody in the area was ready, even though I think we were all a but shocked at how bad it had gotten. But Mom and Dad always made sure we had plenty of food (and non-perishables), plenty of fuel for the wood stove upstairs in the kitchen, and lots of warm clothes, etc. If the power went out, we didn’t freak out and think it was the end of the world. We light up the gas lamps, bring out some cards, a board game or just read/tell stories. It was unplanned free time, that usually ended up with the family spending it together. And I remember having fun during those times when I was a kid.

I try to do that same with our kids now, as does Hubby. We don’t like it when the Youngest starts getting so paranoid when she hears about possible power outages or really bad weather. She loves snow, but she doesn’t like bad weather. And she gets very worried, almost to the point that she makes herself sick. I hate the fact that she’s learned this, and wish she hadn’t. So we try to calm her and explain that everything will be all right. She knows I have a Propane Heater, and a little camp stove that runs on Propane, along with a little stockpile of Propane (Dad worked for Suburban Propane, so you get the idea ;).), and we have the Propane Grill outside. That’s not including the food I try to keep stockpiled in the house, and the water and the first aid kit, stuff for the pets, etc. I don’t worry about how we’ll make it here if the power goes out or if it snows so much that we’ll be truly snowed in. I know how we’ll make it. Between Hubby and myself, we’ll make sure the family survives. And I think we have our parents to thank for that :). We have all major disasters covered, that we’ve been through, or the parental units have, and they shared their knowledge. So I hope to break Youngest of her fear. Be knowledgeable, be ready, be prepared. Don’t be so worried that you spend all that time in the bathroom throwing up, etc, and being stuck with a bunch of stuff that is mostly useless.

I think the only thing that really worries during snowstorms here (and that includes ice/mix), is the fact that people here don’t know how to drive in it. That in itself is OK. BUT, they aren’t smart about it. They go out in it, especially when they don’t have to. They have to be nosy and see “how bad it is”. That really gets to me. Along with the fact that they didn’t pay attention in Driver’s Ed, when they were told if conditions are slippery, you don’t want to speed like a bat out of hell, or use your brakes that much. I know it’s not common around most places here for it to be slippery, but EVEN the news stations repeat this info constantly.

If you recall from past posts, I live on a hill. We have a slight incline, nothing too steep. However when it’s icy, it might as well be steep. And I don’t have my Intrepid to drive anymore, a car that has a lot of weight behind it, especially since it was an older model. Now I have a tiny little KIA, and the last time I tried to traverse the icy hill from hell, I was lucky I didn’t end up in one of my neighbors’ living rooms. And no, there are no plows, no sandtrucks, etc. Most counties in each Southern state (unless this kind of winter weather is common) might have a plow/sandtruck between them. And they are used mostly for the main roads to ensure that emergency vehicles can still get through. And I don’t have enough salt stockpiled to clear our entire road, even if I felt like being that charitable. So my rule of thumb is, if I can’t make it out of my driveway, then I doubt anyone else could or should. It doesn’t get icy often, so it’s rare I use that.

Which comes to my next point. I work at a restaurant, and have been at this same one, owned by the same company, for almost six years now. For my fellow co-workers that may or may not stumble  across this: The home office has only ever closed the store, officially, when it wasn’t a holiday, ONCE. There have been times when it was closed briefly, but then opened right back up. They don’t count (and for the record we’re at four times for that). That day they closed the store entirely, it was due to an ice storm that hit the area really bad. We had no power on our side of the street from 8:30 on till very early the next morning. The other side of the street had power. We didn’t. Go figure. Anyway, we were “OPEN” the entire time until 5PM. The ones of us that were there were not allowed to leave. It was two managers and three crew members. It was fun hanging out, but I would have preferred to be home with my littleone and my then roomie (the BFF). Over the years since, I think I’ve called out for snow at least twice. Once was because I didn’t feel like going in (and you can’t read this and tell me you haven’t done something like that at least once. We’re all allowed at least once). The other time I had fallen while getting the car ready for me to go in (I even had Youngest ready to go in with me, with the school closed). I was already hurting pretty bad with the lovely weather, but the fall made it worse. So after I hauled my ass up the steps and into the house, I called out. Most of the time, if I didn’t have a babysitter for the kids, and it was an emergency, they’d come to work with me. Even our higher up managers didn’t have a problem with this. Unless they were really, SERIOUSLY sick, they’d come in with me. My current General Manager was a little depressed the last time school was closed because I didn’t have the Youngest there with me, with a movie or her Nintendo DS. He loved sitting there and watching it with her. But Daddy was home.

Now, unless it rains before the snow starts, or something happens to cause it to be too slippery, or we actually get SNOWED IN (three inches don’t count), I’ll be at work. And unless my co-workers live out in the outlier areas that always get hit hard (and not many do), if I can make it in, I expect them to be there. I know Bossman feels the same way. His driveway is similar to my street. Only more steep. Leave a little earlier, go slow and stay calm. Yes, this is one of the few times where my foot does not push the accelorator into the floorboard. Pappa taught me right.

In other news, Happy New Years and I hope everyone had a good Yule. Now it’s time for me to play some Sims and then bedtime. Truck day tomorrow. So I need to be there a bit early, even if the snow hasn’t started.

It's Snow Puppy! From the Christmas snow we saw last year.

Sunday, Sunday

It’s Sunday. The day after our 11th Anniversary. Yup, Hubby and I have been married for 11 yrs. And we’re both still alive. Go figure. Oh, there have been plenty of times that I’ve wanted to kill him, and vice versa. It certainly hasn’t been easy, but we’ve had some good times in there. Yesterday was spent with us being quite a bit lazy. We watched movies (Grown Ups and The Bounty Hunter) along with catching up on the third season of Battlestar Galactica. We also blew stuff up together via Halo: Reach. Hubby made a wonderful dinner for us that I wish there was more of! It was very nice, quiet, and relaxing. We don’t often get or take days like that. Even though we didn’t go out anywhere, Hubby said it was just nice spending the time together. We didn’t have to rush, and the only things we HAD to do involved the Zoo we have here. No kids. Nope, not a one. Youngest is with Grandma and Popeye, while the Oldest is getting herself ready to come home tomorrow.

It’s going to be a very busy week, at the start of Yule. It starts officially tomorrow with Mother’s Night, which Youngest and I have a few things in mind already for it. And I wish I could stay up to watch the eclipse of the Moon tomorrow night as well, but it will be hitting the East Coast about 1 AM, and I have things that need to be done on Tuesday, so it’s a no go. Grrrrr. Today will be spent playing catch up with all the chores and projects that have been needed to be done, but I was sick for a little over a week, and not able to keep up with it all. So cards and other things may go out late this year.

Let’s see, Monday we pick up both kids to bring ’em home. Tuesday will be errands and more errands and me getting ready for work for Wednesday. I work full days Wednesday and Thursday, and only open on Friday. We’ll be leaving to go spend the night with Hubby’s family and then back up here Saturday night. Wish we could head up North to be with my family. I keep hoping every year, and every year it’s always something. I think next year I’m putting my foot down. Don’t care what’s happening or going on, etc, I’m going North. If the rest want to follow, fine. But I’m going North. Tired of being so depressed this time of year because I’d like to actually spend Yule with my mother, and my siblings and I can’t be there. I miss them all.

And that is what one of the major things about Yule is: Family. In my little over a decade of being Heathen, one thing that is always attached to Yule, is family. Of course it’s important the rest of the time as well, but this time of year it seems to be more so. I know Mother’s Night is a big night. That is the night that the female ancestor’s and mothers of the family are honored. Youngest and I are making plans to honor them all, but I also like give Mom a call (when work doesn’t interfere) and just talk with her. Most times I get her to tell me more stories about Grandma and her childhood (Mom’s parents passed away not long after I was born and Dad’s before I was born). Youngest likes hearing about stuff like that too, and I’ve encouraged her to talk to Hubby’s Mom, her other Grandma, and hope that she can learn more about that side.

I guess that’s all the spiritual talk I’m gonna go for here, especially since I didn’t add in a warning ahead of time ;).

Anything to update you all up on? Well, our Girl Scout Troop has been doing wonderfully. The Girls had an Outdoor Skills day last weekend and they all had a blast. I have the pictures up on Facebook. There was tent building, rope and knot tieing, fire and knife safety, along with lots of cooking. They had the fire pit all set up for a Dutch Oven Cake  and Dough Boys, and then the girls learned how to make and use Box Ovens, along with using foil and coals. Yeah, we made a lot of sweet stuff, but it was in the afternoon after lunch. Had we done the cooking before lunch we’d have learned how to make a breakfast casserole with the Dutch Oven and a few other brunch items. They all had a blast, and I was really happy when one of the leaders from the camp we went to decided to spend some extra time with our Troop. We’re only about a year old now, and still new to a lot of things, and many of the girls we have this year are new. This leader helped our girls with a Flag Ceremony. The raising and the lowering of the flag. And I’m proud to say they all stepped right up and got into it! We have a very enthusiastic bunch :). I wasn’t able to stay for the raising as one of the girls needed to use the facilities, but I was there for the lowering. The leader was very thorough with everything. She explained every step, and why it was that way and in ways that the girls were paying attention. Of course she was the same one who helped with the tents and ropes too, and the girls loved those! I’m glad and grateful that this woman gave up her time to show them all this. She didn’t have to and wasn’t asked, but she did. I hope the girls noticed that and appreciate it for what it’s worth.

After we get through the Cookie Sales in a few months, I think we may be planning on a camping trip for the girls, one where they can use all these new skills. And that’s what I love about this Troop. The main leader makes sure that the girls are able to get out there and experience a world that they don’t normally get to. Yeah, a lot of them have been camping, but they’ve never had to build a fire, cook their own food, etc. And these are skills that can be very useful to them. Many aren’t really old enough to remember that bad ice storm we had several years that knocked out power for some areas for over a month. Youngest remembers it, as I’ve never let her forget it. We did well enough with no power. I had a small heater, a grill and a few other things to help us out with keeping ourselves warm, entertained, etc. Anyway, it’s something I hope we get to do, and Hubby and I are already make preparations regardless. We’ve talked, and even though he’s a City Indian, I miss doing stuff like that. I didn’t do it all the time growing up, but between my parents, older siblings and various friends, it was something that was normal. And honestly, I miss being able to go for walks in my backyard, which consisted of a huge cow pasture that, yeah, had cows, but deer and other critters, and lots of stuff to explore.

And I think I’m digressing. Let me check. Yup, I am. Ok, time to close this, proof it, and post it so I can get the day going and lots of stuff done.

Where oh where has my SciFi gone?

Where oh where can it be? My SciFi is gone. It’s been replaced by the travesty that is now SyFy.

Waaaaaayyyyy back when, the SciFi Channel was a wonderous thing. It was a geeks one stop place for all kinds of goodies, from SciFi, Anime and Horror. But the key thing was SciFi. That is what made the channel and where it took its name. It spawned great shows like Farscape and gave safe haven to Stargate SG-1 when Showtime abandoned it. It was the place I was able to catch up on Firefly (when I had only been able to catch two episodes when it originally aired), reminisce over Battlestar Galactica (the original) and catch other great shows. Yeah, when they started their movies, it was rare for a good one to creep in, because the rest were crap, but they made up for it with good shows.

Then it started its downhill spiral. Wrestling was introduced, and then it got worse and worse. Less actual Science Fiction was being shown, and I cannot recall the last time I’ve seen anything remotely looking like Anime. The Horror flicks are still hanging around, but even they are beginning to decline. They even turned down shows that were of the Sci Fi/ Fantasy element that needed a new home (ie, Legend of the Seeker).

I do realize that there are “sci-fi” shows on the channel now. BUT a lot of them I don’t care for. Sanctuary is NOT my cup of tea. Eureka I could not get into. Caprica I loved, even though I was behind in the second season. But then again, IF they had left Stargate Universe and Caprica on Friday nights, instead of moving them smack in the middle of my work week (especially when I go in very early in the day). And I doubt I’m the only one who suffered from that problem.

If you haven’t already guessed, I’m a bit upset at SyFy. And perhaps guessed why, too. Yet another show I love and adore has been canceled. And I think what has me more upset than the actual act (which has me pretty peeved), but how the cast and crew found out. Via the internet. A few were alerted ahead of time, or about the same time as the official announcement, through e-mail. The actual announcement itself came to the world thanks to Twitter. Yup, I can see David Blue (Eli on SGU) taking a break from whatever he was doing, an hour after the announcement, to check his Twitter and Facebook accts. Most likely one of the first thing he spotted were the many messages of concern and upset from his fans at the cancellation of Stargate Universe. He probably thought it was a nasty rumor going around and got ahold of his publicist, who then confirmed, no it was real. SyFy’s Twitter account had not been hacked, and it was not a cruel joke from some disgruntled fan (Take note: He did find out on Twitter, but I have no idea exactly how it happened). He and MingNa were some of the first to find out that way. Yup, a great holiday present from SyFy: Thanks for your continued support and defense of our lame asses who can do nothing but insult people’s intelligence, but screw you, you can’t work for us anymore.

They are so brilliant, my brain hurts.

Joe Mallozzi has stated that once he returns from Japan and has a chance to speak with the lead producers of the show, that he will post a blog with as much info as he can about it all, and what happened. He has no clue. I think him and the others when they finally wrapped the second season a few weeks ago were pretty content with the idea that they would be back with a third season. So I will wait and see what he says before I go on being more ranty than I already am. It’s a few days later and I’m still pissed. It’s very similar to how they canned Stargate Atlantis. If memory serves right with SG-1 we knew before the final season aired that it would be the last one, so they had a chance to wrap stuff up. Even if I think the final episode was contrived and didn’t give the fans any kind of closure. I’ll have to do some research into it, but I believe Atlantis was canceled mid-season too.

And don’t get me started on the movies. I know the producers want the movies. They even have scripts ready for Sg-1 and Atlantis. However, MGM is sitting on their rears and won’t give them the green light. They will be direct release DVDs, much cheaper to put out than if they were to hit the theatres first. Not sure why they won’t when they have many fans who will swallow them up. And many of those same fans fall into the half season DVD trap, buying them up (not touching that one, as it’s not only Stargate that is a victim of it). So the likelihood of Stargate Universe getting a movie out of this, uhm, very doubtful. I know I won’t make any plans on that. Nope. If they haven’t given the green light for SG-1 or Atlantis, Universe has no hope.

If I could understand their reason why, then maybe I could give SyFy more credit. I can understand why they wanted to cancel SG-1. The show had 10 great years (intermingled with some crap and travesties) and I know I’d rather them end on a high note than a low one. The movies didn’t do too bad in sales, and frankly I’d see it as a case to produce one or two more to give total closure to some of the ‘important’ storylines that they never went back to, except to bring it up in passing (Furlings are a big one there).

I’m still confused over Atlantis. The ratings may not have been as a high as wrestling (my brain hurts), but they brough in a great audience. And at this time, DVRs and on-demand downloads (iTunes/Amazon) along with Hulu were becoming the norm. So there were a lot of people watching them… Oh wait! I remember now! They don’t count those number when they figure in the final ratings for a show. Yeah, they peak at the DVR numbers, but the rest are totally ignored. Even the hits on their own website to watch the full episodes. We live in an age of technology and they need to figure out how to add up all those different ratings to get a final number. I bet they’d have much larger numbers. Especially when most fans of Sci Fi are geeks that tend to be a bit techno savvy. So that is pretty much what happened to Atlantis.

Now with Universe, no clue. The ratings for the most part were consistent. Even without the DVR info. And if you were  on Twitter at all during either season, it was not surprising to see the actors live tweeting during the show with the fans, and everyone was watching. So I don’t think it’s ratings. At least if they claim it is, I call bullshit. Even people who claimed they weren’t going to watch the show, watched. Why? So they’d have something to complain about.

As I’ve stated in the past on this blog, I didn’t want to like Universe. I was bitter and upset over the loss of Atlantis. I didn’t want more Stargate shows, I wanted Atlantis. Well, while I bashed the show, they managed to sign Lou Diamond Phillips and MingNa to the cast. The rest of the people I didn’t really know and at the time, I didn’t want to know. These two made me start to rethink that. I’ve always enjoyed their performances (even if the movie/show was utter crap). So I started doing some research, and was sucked in. I decided that I would give it a chance, especially after the first trailers started to come out. They didn’t look like the Stargate I remembered. Then Air premiered and it was love at first sight. As the season went on, I started becoming attached to the characters, Telford (LDP) being front and center. I made some new friends through Twitter who were also watching it, and reconnected with some old ones who gave in like I did. I also got to speak with several of the cast & crew members through Twitter, who helped to alleviate fears and concerns, or just to have a bit of fun. I got to know Brian Jacob Smith (Lt. Scott) a bit better to come to respect him a great deal, and then to discover his mother and find out that’s where he got a lot of it from. Unlike all the previous incarnations of Stagate, this was the first time I felt like I had a vested interest in the show. The first time I felt any kind of connection with the people behind the show, and wanted them to really succeed because they became REAL people to me. Not the characters, but the people who played them. So yeah, this all sucks.

I don’t know if I could do a proper closing on this one. I know I will finish watching the second season when the second half starts up in April. After that, I highly doubt I will continue on with SyFy. It’s not the channel I remember and loved. It’s become something else that I don’t really want much to do with. No longer do I spend most of the day with that channel on the TV. Instead I opt for the DVDs I have or Netflix to have my genres of choice playing on the TV. Thank you to all the cast and crew and their families of not just Startgate Universe, but the entire franchise. You all rock, and here’s a little hope that they allow you all to continue your story somewhere, somehow down the road.

I’m going to load up Halo now and blow stuff up.

I moved to the South…

Mainly because of the Hubby, but also to get away from the COLD. As a kid I loved it. Especially the snow. As I’ve gotten older and developed some health issues, the cold is no longer my friend. And they are threatening some snow here in the next week. Not cool. I know the Youngest wants snow and has been asking and asking for snow. I’d like to see some for her and for Vader (aka Snow Puppy!). Just hope there isn’t any ice involved, because of the hill we live on (if you recall from past posts), or rather the bottom of the hill we live on, makes it very difficult to make it up it. If my Intrepid was still working, no problem. Big ass car with a killer engine, VS the KIA (which is a good car) that can race like the wind, but as far as making it up the hill, nope, it does not do well. So we shall see. Worse comes to worse, with Hubby home this year for Winter, then I can get him to drive the car to the top of the hill, while I get a sleigh hitched up to Vader to take me up after it. Or I could just use him to get to work ;).

In other news, plans are still going for the topic a day. But it’s been slowed due to the hands and computer and in some cases a genuine lack in time. Have a lot planned, just need the time and the hands for it. And time will be short this weekend. We have a lot of Girl Scout stuff planned and I can’t wait! Neither can the Youngest. Saturday we’re going to do Outdoor Cooking with the Troop. And of course we’re looking at rain and cold temps. But, the girls will be learning how to cook meals outside, with something other than a grill. And something other than s’mores :). Sunday afternoon, the Troop will be helping out a local charity, Country Santa. This was started by a local man who wanted to help those families with children to ensure the kids were able to enjoy the holidays. He takes donations and collects toys and other things all year round and then hands them out to needy families. The Troop leader and a few of us parents wanted the girls to do something to help the community but something that didn’t involve them collecting money. Too many times schools, troops (Boy and Girl Scouts, etc) and many other well-meaning people, rely on money collection to help others. But that’s not really teaching anybody anything, other than money will help. So the girls will be doing something there to really have it hit home that they are really doing something good. Most likely they will be wrapping and/or organizing the presents. No money involved and they will still be helping others.

Not feeling too well tonight. I think the cold that has been threatening over the last few weeks is finally creeping in and winning. So I’ve bathed myself in Vicks, getting ready to take some meds and I may just pass on Fringe tonight so I can get a little bit more sleep. It’s gonna be a long few days and I can’t really bow out of any of it. And I don’ t want to, either, which really makes me hope this is just a little thing and I’ll be fine in the AM. But, I have that certain kind of luck :(. Oh well. Night all and hope to have another update on Sunday, or sooner.