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Violin Chick
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12th-Sep-2008 07:08 pm - For dybbuk67
Holiday Party
Flying is learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.
- Douglas Adams
6th-May-2008 02:31 pm - I have a nephew!
Holiday Party
It occurred to me that I should've posted this on LJ - there are still a few people who might read this who wouldn't already know.

My sister-in-law gave birth to baby boy Liam on April 29th, 2008, at 12:13 AM. It was an emergency C-section - he had the cord around his neck. They are home, and everyone is doing fine.

Liam is very, very cute. He makes lots of funny faces and little baby noises. We have been trying to take them all food so that they will not starve as they try to take care of both him and themselves. :-)
6th-May-2008 02:28 pm - We have hot water . . .
Holiday Party
but maybe only for the moment.

rolnickrRob and I woke up yesterday morning, and I was first in the shower, as usual. I noticed while I was showering that the hot water seemed a little less hot than normal, and by the time Rob finished, it was downright chilly. So, before leaving for work, I went downstairs to investigate. The LED panel on the hot water heater was displaying an error code, which I looked up in the manual; it meant "System in Lockout." When we bought the house, it came with a one-year home warranty, so I called that company to schedule service. That was about 7:45 AM (a time when I am often already at work, but I will sacrifice for hot water!), and the plumbing company they wanted me to call did not open until 9. I called right at 9 AM to schedule the appointment, and the guy working the phone told me that the plumber would call me "when he [had] time" to deal with the call. Asked for a rough estimate of how long that would be, he refused to commit to anything. (Today? Next week?) He called back (at the wrong number, but fortunately, I got the voice mail) probably around 11:30, and I called as soon as I got the message and left him a message. By the time he called back again, it was after 2 PM, and the answer he had for me was that they don't work on our particular type of hot water heater! By this time, I've wasted the whole day, so after I called the home warranty company to ask for a different plumber, it was too late for them to come out.

Rob and I survived this morning - I took a very cold, very fast shower, and we both went to work. The second plumbing company was supposed to call me today when the plumber was about an hour away from getting to our house. The lady called around 12:30, and I jetted home to meet him. He left at about 1:45. He told me that he got it started, but there is no guarantee that it will continue to start reliably. It needs a new part, which he ordered, but the part has to come directly from the manufacturer, and he had no idea how long that would take. Gah! So, for the moment, I have hot water, and I am taking care of a few very important chores: I already started the dishwasher and a load of laundry! I'm tempted to take a shower, too, but I can probably wait until tomorrow morning for that.

So, here's my planned schedule for the rest of the day:
- Take a brief nap so that I don't fall asleep in the chair (It's been busy around here, and I am behind on my sleep)
- Work on schoolwork until 4 PM (with a quick break to deal with the laundry)
- Leave to run errands: UPS Store to drop off a pair of shoes I ordered and had to exchange for a larger size, buy Mother's Day cards at Hallmark, and then go to Curves
- Come home and make/eat dinner
- Do more schoolwork
- Iron
- Sleep!
21st-Mar-2008 10:30 pm - Yay Weekend
Holiday Party
Rob and I went to Let's Dish tonight. This is the third time we've gotten food from there. Every time we go, I start asking myself questions . . . "Oh no. Are we yuppies? Are we really spending this much money on food?" It's less expensive than eating in restaurants (even inexpensive restaurants), but it's far more expensive than buying food in the grocery store and making it ourselves. I try to use Let's Dish to prepare things that I wouldn't try on my own - more ethnic things, or complicated dishes. And I justify it by telling myself that it is cheaper and better for me than eating out. We haven't had any disasters, either - the food has ranged from pretty good to absolutely delicious.

We are visiting Rob's family tomorrow. That should be fun, as we have not seen any of them in about two months. That reminds me - I need to wrap up his mother's birthday gift (almost a month overdue) to take with us. I missed a lot of birthdays while I was gone in February.

I think I'm of the opinion that an LJ strike is kind of silly. There's no right to free LJ. I have an old Basic account, and I'm not going to give it up, but I did have a paid account, back when I was a heavy user, I actually used a tiny bit of the paid functionality, and I kind of felt like I should provide some financial support to a service I was using regularly. So yeah - it sucks. Big corporations bad and all that. But I can't actually blame them for wanting to be profitable. And I think LJ has proven that people will provide plenty of content, whether they have to pay to do it or not.

And now, I am going to go to bed! I'm exhausted.
14th-Mar-2008 10:02 pm - Blogspot
With all the recent changes on LiveJournal, I've decided to look around at what the options are. Truth be told, I'll probably just hang around LJ forever - I think I'm going to miss the ability to post different entries with different levels of security and maintain my friends list and such. Funny thing is, I think LiveJournal is about the only site around that actually does the things it does. In any event, if anyone wants to check out my Blogspot page, you can see it at http://violinwoman.blogspot.com/. There's not much content yet. I have a friend who has been using Blogspot for a long time, so I thought I'd try it. (Oh, and I CAN'T STAND MySpace. I have an account that I use to read my friends' pages on occasion. To quote rolnickr, MySpace pages usually look like the Internet vomited all over them.

Incidentally, I guess I can never upgrade my LJ account again. In the past, when I was using LJ more heavily, I had a paid account. I let it revert to a Basic Account (or Free Account, at the time) when I stopped using it as much. Now, I'm afraid if I ever upgrade to paid status again, I won't be able to go back to a Basic Account, since that option is no longer available.
29th-Jan-2008 09:17 pm - Tapped Out
Holiday Party
Well, we have front-loaded our spending for 2008, and I think we are about tapped out!

Almost two weeks ago, on the Thursday when it snowed, Rob spun off the highway on the way home from work. Fortunately, he was fine, but his car was totaled. We found out about that last Tuesday, and we spent the rest of last week shopping for a new car. We drove some different cars and went to several different dealers. We finally decided what we wanted, but we didn't realize that we had picked something that was in short supply! We did finally find what we wanted and bought it on Friday night. We got a 2008 Honda CR-V with navigation (which was the part that made it hard to find). The color is Glacier Blue Metallic (sort of a light blue/silver color).

Needless to say, buying a new car wasn't really in the plans this year. After all, we just bought a new house! I think we're going to be able to work it out so that our car payment is barely different. We are going to use the money from the totaled car (which we owned outright) to pay off the older car and replenish what we spent as a down payment on the new car. Basically, our car payment will stay about the same, but will continue longer than we were planning. I hope that we will not need to buy another one for quite awhile now! We have a pretty new fleet - a 2005 Honda Accord and the 2008 CR-V.

Then, since we weren't yet in enough financial pain, we somehow decided it would be a good idea to buy a new television on Saturday. Circuit City had a good deal on the one we wanted, and they were offering 36-month interest-free financing, plus we had a 10% off coupon. We bought a new Sony 52" LCD, just in time for the Superbowl! My whole family ended up being involved in the purchase. We had dinner with my parents on Saturday, and then we had to borrow Dad's truck to pick up the TV. Dad helped us get it, and the rest of the family met us at the house. Dad and my brother hauled the old TV upstairs to our bedroom, and then we set up the new one in the family room. I've got to admit that it looks much better than the old one in there. It was not a small television (34"), but the room has to be set up the long way with the couch at one end and the TV at the other. (There is a fireplace on the longer wall, so we can't put the TV there.) The distance from the TV made it seem really small.

So, we are going to be pinching our pennies for awhile! We should be fine, but I hope we don't run into any more crises for awhile. I'd really like to build the savings account back up to a more comfortable level.

Now, needless to say, I am completely exhausted and desperately in need of sleep. I think I will go clean up the kitchen and head for bed.
25th-Jan-2008 07:08 am - Happy Birthday!
Holiday Party
Happy birthday, boztopia!
21st-Jan-2008 10:00 pm - Nothing Much
Holiday Party
Well, there's either not much going on here, or too much to talk about. :-) I guess it's mostly just more of the same around here.

We had a nice weekend. We to see my friends B & B on Saturday night. They have two kids now, E (a girl, almost two) and M (a boy, almost six months). It kind of freaks me out that so many of my friends have kids. We're still kids ourselves, right? We hung out at their house with the kids and B's mother for about an hour, and then the four of us went to dinner while Grandma watched the kids. Since B is trilingual, she is speaking mostly German to the kids. I guess the other B is teaching them English, because I don't think he knows German. :-)

I had a pretty good partial day off today. I did have to go to work this morning for an all-hands meeting. It ran much longer than I was expecting it to. They had told us it would last 2 - 2.5 hours, and it was actually more than 3. I was running late when I left, but it was not a big deal. I picked up my mother, and then she and I had lunch with her friend, M. Two of M's grandkids were there, so it was a little hard to visit, but it was fun to see the kids. They are both three years old right now.

So, it's been a pretty kid-ful few days. None on the way for us yet, of course, just in case anyone was wondering. ;-)

I think I'm going to go to bed. The alarm goes off really early.
24th-Sep-2007 08:54 pm - Settlement
Holiday Party
We settle on our new (well, new to us, anyway) house tomorrow morning. Our walk-through is at 8:15 tomorrow morning, and settlement is at 9 AM. I think we have everything squared away, so we will just have to keep our fingers crossed that everything goes well.

This has been a really long time coming. We are looking forward to having space of our own again. Miraculously, my brother, his wife, rolnickrRob and I are all still on speaking terms. We should probably get out of here before that is no longer true. :-) Seriously, it has been okay, and even fun at times, but we are ready to move out.

We're planning to move in officially on Friday. Between now and then, we will haul as much stuff as we can over there for ourselves. That'll cut down on how much we have to pay the movers.

The rest of life is also going pretty well. I have been making a real push to finish my thesis lately. It has been harder for the last week or so because we have been so busy getting ready with the house, but I am still making pretty good progress and have solved a couple of problems that have been plaguing me for awhile. I am hoping to graduate this fall.

And that's about it here. As usual, I have not really been keeping up with anyone's journal. Sorry. :-( Maybe after I graduate. :-D
19th-Aug-2007 10:35 pm - We're buying a house!
Holiday Party
I think many of you know this already, but that's okay. I thought I'd post, anyway.

We finally found a house! It is an existing house in a community called Fourwinds in Severn. It came on the market a week ago this past Friday, and we went to see it that night. We liked it right away, so we decided to write a contract. We bargained with the sellers on Monday, and by Monday night, we had made a deal. We've been very busy this week with contracts, mortgage stuff, insurance stuff, and everything else that goes with buying a house.

We had our home inspection on Friday, and we spent about three hours in the house with the inspector and our Realtor. We remembered why we liked it so much while we were there. It has a kitchen we really like, with a double wall oven and a cooktop in the island, Corian counters, and ceramic tile floors. The rest of the first floor, except for the family room, has wood floors. The family room and foyer are both two stories high. The second floor hallway is basically a catwalk between the family room and foyer, connecting the bedrooms on either end of the house. The master bedroom is over the garage, and it's huge. It has one large walk-in closet, and the master bath has a big bathtub and a separate shower stall.

We settle on September 25th, and I think we're planning to move on September 28th. We're really excited about having our own house again. :-)

We spent today catching up on housework. We're living with my brother and his wife right now. We did all of the laundry and ironing today and also scrubbed the whole house. They took apart a jungle gym that was in their yard (from the previous owner of their house) and gave it to a neighbor who has kids. We also had a really good dinner - salad, pot roast (with carrots and onions), mashed potatoes, and asparagus, with pudding pie for dessert. It was a good day, but a VERY busy one.

Rob finished his last homework assignment for his summer course, so that is done. He took his final exam yesterday.

Now, I just have to go back to work tomorrow - yuck. I'm also trying to press ahead on my thesis, since I really do need to finish it someday . . .
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