Maggie really hates the fourth of july. And the entire rest of the weekend. She won't even go out at night anymore without intense encouragement and the supervision of both ben and myself.

It's all very weird since we brought her home just days before the fourth of july when she was a puppy and had no trouble with the fireworks that first time. I guess they bothered her more than she let on.

Last night we managed to get her out for a quick pee long after the fireworks had finished. She did her business and then ran straight to us to pick her up. What a baby.

In other news, I went to physical therapy again yesterday.

First they had me sit on am exercise bike for about 15 minutes. Then they had me do some leg and stomach stretches. I'm supposed to add the stomach stretches to my list of daily home exercises. I was given a lower back massage after that. Then they put me on the evil rowing machine. I hate the rowing machine. It is very hard to do and hurts a lot. When it was over, my back and shoulder hurt more than before. They electrocuted my back, but let me leave with a sat tense neck. It was a challenge to fall asleep last night.

Oh, and I got my blood tests back from my regular doctor. Said I was extremely b12 deficient, but that they could prescribe me a supplement for that. (A nose spray.) I told them to go ahead, thinking it was going to be relatively inexpensive considering it's a common vitamin. Got the email from my pharmacy right after therapy. Over $300!!! For 8 doses. Madness!

I'm going to cancel that order. I did some more research online and found that the nose spray is not normally prescribed because it's so ridiculously expensive. Usually doctors suggest vitamin pills first. Except my doctor, apparently. The cdc even said that the absorption of the pills and the nasal spray are about equal, so it's suggested to try pills first unless the patient has some sort of stomach problem like crohns disease. (Which I do not.) I can't fathom why she'd send me to the most expensive option first when there's a viable cheaper option out there.

Also she wants me to come back in in about 2 months to administer another blood test. In addition to re-checking the b12, she also said my thyroid results came back a little unusual and they want to double check it. Also ultrasound it.

This is why you don't go to doctors. They find all sorts of crazy things that are wrong with you and prescribe you expensive stuff. I disapprove. 
Running today went significantly better. I did some more research and discovered the run-walk-run technique. Basically it's where you run for a short amount of time, then walk for a short amount, then repeat until your race is over. And by short, I mean really short. For beginners, a lot of sites suggested running times of 15-30 seconds. You increase the run times only after stamina has been developed.

I went with the following pattern:
- Run 30 seconds
- Walk 30 seconds
- Run 30 seconds
- Walk 30 seconds
- Run 30 seconds
- Walk 3 minutes

By doing that, I doubled the amount of time I was actually running and halved the amount of pain I felt. We'll see how I feel tomorrow, but I felt pretty good today. Gives me confidence that I might actually keep this up.

And I had enough energy afterwards to do some cleaning too! I finished going through nearly all the boxes that had to return to the sewing room. I have a few more things that need to find homes (books!) but other than that, the room is nearly up and ready again. Then I can finish cleaning the guest room. After that, I have the downstairs bathroom, the kitchen, living and dining rooms, and the stairs. IF I have time after that, the upstairs bathroom could use a cleaning too.

In other news, Maggie discovered a box turtle the other day on one of our walks. She curiously sniffed it until the turtle squished up into its shell. Then that was it for Maggie. She wanted to go back home as far away from the turtle as possible. What a weird dog. Mighty hunter she is not.

In sad news, Nugget died this morning. I cried. :( She had been fighting a tumor for a long long time. The vet had given her maybe a month to live, but she managed to hold on for over a year. The last couple days she wasn't doing well. Mom was feeding her baby food. Then this morning, she went out, did her business, came back in, rested on her pillow, and stopped breathing. I guess she decided it was finally time to go.

She was a good dog that was always grateful that we had rescued her from bad breeders. When we first met her, she was covered in fleas and her fur was totally matted. The first thing she did when we brought her home was poop on my homework. But she settled in easily after that and was always friendly to everyone she met. I think she could remember that bad times and appreciated the chance to live a better life. She lived 16.5 years, which is pretty good for a dog. I'll miss her.
1. Cleaning

Noname's old age has been creeping up on her and she tends to have more accidents in the house lately. In the same spots over and over again. I clean it up each time, but the repeated pee smell is getting permanently stuck in the carpet. So this weekend I rented a heavy duty carpet steamer and gave the carpets the best cleaning of their lives. Hopefully it got up all the pee smell so she won't return to her old accident spots again.

The store gave me a hard time when I returned the cleaner, saying I didn't clean out all the hairs. I had cleaned it as good as they had given it to me, so I was pretty annoyed. I parked the cleaner right in front of the door to the customer service desk and attempted to get it as clean at they had it in their heads it should be. Eventually they got fed up walking over me and said I could get my deposit back. I win.

2. Iron Man 3

I don't want to say any spoilers so I won't say much. I thought it was the best of the 3 iron man movies. I didn't like the first one. The second was tolerable. But this one was actually fun to watch.

We watched the movie at the new Alamo Drafthouse near us. I was pleasantly surprised by the theater. The ticket prices were comparable to the other theaters in the area, but you got assigned seats, a little table, and they brought food right to you during the movie. This is a step above Cobb which gives you a restaurant beeper and has you leave the movie to get your food.

I find the schedule for the drafthouse to be a bit confusing, but maybe that's just because they are doing grand opening stuff. Also, the no talking stuff before the film was super intimidating.

3. Programming

My java 1 final is Thursday. I need to do a bit more studying on the final chapter, but otherwise I think I'm ready. The teacher said it was written by committee and is much easier than any of the tests she normally gives us. (Also easier than the homework assignment we just handed in.) So hopefully she's telling the truth on that.

Over the weekend I was fighting with the homework she had assigned. We were supposed to read a list of reservations from a file, assign them to a list of rooms, and create a waiting list for those that could not get the room they wanted.

No matter what I did, I couldn't get it to work. It would only assign reservations to the first room in each category. I was going crazy, so I finally asked ben if I could borrow his eyes. Within minutes of explaining my program to him, I found the mistake. In a section where I tell the program, "Check if the reservation got assigned. If it did, you can quit looking," I accidentally had an = where it should have been ==. That changed it to, "The reservation for assigned, so quit looking," basically. That tiny little mistake broke they key part of the program! So frustrating!

But once it was fixed, the program worked beautifully. I was so proud.

4. Captain Flint

She is feeling better. And never stops screaming for attention. Ever. I am ready to kill her.

5. Other stuff

It is raining so I can't mow the lawn. The backyard is too tall. And the front yard is lopsided because a strange woman mowed 1/3 of my lawn. I want to learn how to run a marathon. Yesterday was Maggie's birthday. She wore a party hat and ate cake. She's now 2 years old. 
Java midterm went well. I got a 97. Go me!

So far I have straight As in this class. I hope I can keep it up.

A bunch of people dropped the class after the midterm. The class started with 28 people officially on the roster (Although only 10-12 ever showed up) and now it's down to 7. I can remember ever having a class that small at Tulane. Crazy!

I am looking forward to learning more stuff soon because I have been unable to find an app that I want. But soon I will have the power to make it myself!!!

Basically, I want a to-do list app with the following features:
- Schedule reoccurring events x-days after completion, rather than on a specific date
- Create rolling chains of events that require the completion of another event before populating
- Collapsible sub-task lists

I feel like these things are not that complicated, but I was shocked that I couldn't find an app that does them. (If you know of one, please tell me.) It seems like all the to-do list apps out there are just glorified notepads. If I wanted that, I'd just use pen and paper.

So I will make what I want and be filled with productive glee.

In other news, the following dog-human interaction took place:
Me - Maggie, your nails are so long! They need to be clipped!
Maggie - *jumps up on couch* *gives me her paw*
Me - You want them clipped right now? Let me get the clippers!
Maggie - *waits patiently on couch*
Me - *gets clippers* *clips nails*
Maggie - *presents paws as appropriate for clipping*

She's SO smart! It's insane! And now she has perfectly trimmed little toes.

Unlike Noname. who has talons of death. Ben has to hold her down while I clip her nails. It's an ordeal....
The other day I was walking the dogs and we encountered an old man taking a walk. The following conversation happened.
Old man: Is that a welsh corgi?
Me: Yup! *maggie bounces and wiggles like the psychopath that she is*
OM: He's got a lot of energy!
Me: Yeah, she's pretty hyper
OM: And he's got a big head!
Me: *dumbfounded*
awkward silence
OM: But I guess that's normal for the breed.

And then he walked away. What a strange thing to say to someone about their dog!

In other news, I got my programming test back. Got a 91! Because I'm awesome! Most of my mistakes were little stupid ones. I only got a few questions wrong.

I was shocked to see the guy next to me only got a 52. Then I remembered he only comes to class about once a month and was less shocked. I'm just confused why someone would pay all the money for these courses (community college is cheaper, but it's certainly not cheap!) and then not put any effort into passing.

There's another guy in class who was saying how he was up until 6am working on the homework and he didn't even finish most of it. Again, it's baffling. We had over 2 weeks to work on this assignment. He started it last night. Why????
Today I took a long relaxing bath. Well, mostly relaxing. Every 5-10 minutes, a small corgi would push herself into the bathroom to check up on me.

She'd whimper as if to say, "Are you ok? Why would you do this to yourself!?"

I reassured her that a bath is not as terrible as she considers it, but I don't think she believed me. She was very relieved when my bath was finally over.
Had my first test in java class this week. Our teacher called it a quiz, but there was no way that was a quiz. It took nearly the entire class length to complete.

Overall, I think I did well. I did the rare intelligent thing and studied a little bit every day instead of trying to cram the night before. However, the class notes for GUIs said we only needed to know them for the lab and homework. So I didn't study those at all. And of course there was a question on them. Bah. Well, I did my best. And in real life I'd be able to look up any code I needed.

In other news, Maggie has been super bad lately. She refuses to come in when I call her. She seems to think if she stays outside all day, I'll come out to play with her. That's not how it goes. Games in the backyard are now on hold until she learns I am in charge and I decide when we play. I'm happy to take her out to play every day, but when I say playtime is over, I expect her to come back in the house with me.
Ben has a cold. It makes him snore and gargle all night in his sleep. Earplugs are saving our marriage right now.

He sounds absolutely dreadful. I hope it clears up quickly.

It snowed again. Another half an inch. I'm not sure I'm even going to bother to shovel it today. 

Maggie loves playing in the snow. Part of me wants a real snowstorm so she can have extra fun. She's never seen more than an inch or so of snow in her entire life! Crazy, right?
Returned to the dentist yesterday to get my cavities taken care of. They were running a little bit late (30 minutes) but I told them it wasn't a problem. I then watched people come in and yell at the receptionists about how horrible they all were for being late. Seriously? Stuff happens!

I was eventually seated by the assistant to the dental assistant. He was so flaming, he lit up the room. It was impressive. At one point, however, he mentioned his WIFE. There is absolutely no way that man has a wife. I'm going to assume he means husband but doesn't want to accidentally offend anyone. (This is the south, after all.)

After another 30 minutes of waiting and nervously shivering in the dentist's chair, everyone finally arrived. They tried to reassure me that it'll be ok. I was shaking really badly at that point. Just the sight of the drills was freaking me out. In the end, the dental assistant had to keep holding my hand and stroking my arm to get me to calm down a tiny bit. I'm so pathetic.

Once I was numbed up, the dentist began. He told me to raise my left hand if I felt pain at any point. I didn't have to because I screamed. As soon as he drilled through the enamel, I was in pain. So more numbing was added....I couldn't even feel my eyeball or my ear at that point, so he continued.

Things went a bit more smoothly after that. An hour later, the torture was over. Then we discussed getting crowns on my about-to-crack old root canal teeth. They suggested I do them both at once, based on how terrified I was today. They scheduled 3 hours to do this so I can open and close my mouth enough and avoid stiffness. I'm not looking forward to 3 hours of drills... The assistant suggested I bring music to listen to so I won't have to hear the sounds of the drills. Maybe I'll try that.

When I got home, my face was still super numb. I had to drink tomato soup for dinner because I was afraid of biting my tongue off. As the evening progressed, I slowly got feeling back. Feeling came back with a horrible itchy sensation. I wanted to scratch my face off. But about 5 hours later, I could completely feel my face again.

In other news, it snowed last night and Maggie LOVES IT. She ran around in circles all through the freshly fallen snow and rolled around in it and just had the greatest time. She's so cute.
On to January, so I don't have to type up an entire month all over again.

Also, forgot to mention one thing in December: the final for my programming class.

It was written by someone other than my teacher. And was not very clear at all. My teacher ended up having to explain the directions for every single question on the test because the wording was so poor. I freaked out a lot during the test. I knew the stuff, but the wording of everything made me make stupid mistakes. In the end though, I passed the class with an A. Go me!

Ok, now January.

After new years, I got a lot of sleeping done. Then a lot of cleaning. And cooking. Sooooo much cooking.

It felt good to put away the christmas decorations. Freedom from the most depressing holiday of the year.

Maggie's eye cleared up right away. She was back to her old nonsense in no time.

In other news, noname seems to have developed a uti and is alternating between dribbling on everything and directly peeing on everything. I called the vet, but they couldn't squeeze her in until monday. So we bought noname a pack of diapers to get by until then. Poor smelly puppy.

And then speaking of diapers, on thursday ben and I drove up to baltimore to drop off food to our friends who just had a baby. (Hence all the cooking.) We brought spinach and mushroom lasagna, roasted veggie and kale soup, chocolate chip ice cream, pumpkin spice rice krispy treats, and chocolate chip zucchini bread. It was a mighty bounty of foodness.

I'm not really into babies so I mostly just found the creature to be moist and loud. Maybe it'll be more interesting when it's older and does something other than scream. (So I guess when it's 21?) I mostly just spent the time feeling awkward and trying really hard not to say something stupidly offensive.

Afterwards we stopped at ikea because ben needed a new office chair. We also got a new closet organizer and a shoe rack for me. Which meant a wild and crazy friday night organizing my socks. It may sound like I'm being sarcastic, but I'm actually unbelievably happy about having my socks so organized.

Today was completely destroyed by typing a huge lj post about december. But now that I'm caught up, that won't happen again. Oh who am I kidding....
Life goes on. I fail to write about it. Bad on me.

Farm CSA stuff:

I had a theory that afternoons would be quieter than mornings. When I first tested my theory, I was absolutely correct. It was wonderfully peaceful. Second time I tested it, it was the usual nightmare. Perhaps things will improve when school starts. I am extremely tired of children throwing tantrums.

Speaking of tantrums, this week kids were crying in the fields cause their parents would not let them eat apples. What is the point of u-pick if you don't taste what you are picking? It's pesticide free, so there's no excuse. The kids were actually asking for a healthy snack and the parents were saying no. I ended up picking a delicious juicy apple and eating it in front of the kids as we waited for the tractor to take us back to the parking lot. The cries of disappointment only made the apple for delicious.

Did I post a picture of last week's haul? I don't think I did.

2012 CSA week 11
2012 CSA week 12

By the way, homemade grape juice is pretty awesome. I normally don't like grape juice.

Dog stuff:

Maggie is super annoying is she does not have someone to play with her every hour of the day. Until ben comes home. Then she's calm, relaxed, and well-behaved. I think I'm going to throw her out the window.

Somehow today she managed to push noname's empty food bowl under the placemat AND under the water bowl. It was impressive. Corgis are unstoppable.

Noname is a tomato thief. She can't reach any more cherry tomatoes, so she has started to steal my regular tomatoes. I am not amused. Next year, I will need to plant a sacrificial cherry tomato plant and not stake it. That way she can reach all the fruit as it grows along the ground and not take my plum tomatoes. (I need those for sauce!)

She just went upstairs to rest, and farted with each step up. I can't decide if I should laugh or be horrified.

School stuff:

I started my first day of classes today. It went well. I found the room without a problem. The teacher seems nice so far. He walked us through the entire syllabus to make sure everything was clear. The grading policy seemed fair, which is a plus. I used to have teachers at Tulane who graded based on how much you sucked up to them. I hate teachers like that with a passion.

The class is surprisingly small for an intro class. Not that I'm complaining. It'll likely get smaller too. One guy walked out halfway through class. Another showed up 15 minutes before the class ended. And another guy asked the teacher if the quizzes and tests were the same as last semester.

In class, we started talking about programming being problem solving. The teacher gave an example problem and asked how the class would approach it. I gave the right answer! :) Yay for being smart on the first day. Let's hope it lasts!
Walk in the kitchen and maggie is face-deep in noname's bag of dog food. I yell at her to scat, seal the bag, and go about my business. Minutes later, I walk through the kitchen again and she's face deep in the bag AGAIN. So this time I decide to put the bag out of her reach, but when I pick up the bag it immediately slips out of my hand as it was completely covered in puppy drool. About a quarter of the food spills out onto the floor. Got to clean that up while chasing dogs away the entire time. NOT amused.
Last week I made a trip to NY. Ben was out of town and my mother had been bugging me for a visit for a while. I got to see my friends a good couple of times, so it all went very well.

The drive down on Thursday was pretty smooth. I didn't hot real traffic until I got to NY, and even then I got to my parents' house before they did. While we waited, Maggie got to see her first train. (My parents live next to the train tracks.) She waited the rest of the time from the safety of the car.

On Friday, I went with my mother to Williamsburg Brooklyn (hipster capitol of the world) to visit my great aunt. When I was a kid, the neighborhood was entirely polish families. It's so different now!

We got there a little early and my great aunt was still getting her hair done, so we made an adventure to find stroopwafels. The first shop (which, bizarrely, was right next to where my great grandma's old candy shop used to be) was all out, but they suggested a cheese shop a block or so down that usually carries them.They did indeed have them, and I nearly died buying them. The place smelled horrific. Too much cheese! And the woman working the register was telling a couple where to find every single pizza shop in the area. The wait was awful.

But I got my stroopwafels! And they were quite tasty! Not so tasty that I'd make a trip just for them, but it was worth it since I was in the neighborhood.

After that, we ate lunch with my great aunt at one of the remaining polish restaurants in the area. She happily told my mother all the gossip in the neighborhood and then we went back to her apartment where she gave us random cans of food to take home.

The drive back to my parents' house was terrible. It was raining so the traffic took 2.5 hours. With my mother. Alone in a car. Not fun.

But the evening went better. I met up with all my friends at a local pirate restaurant. We had a ton of fun even if the pirate theming was a little weak. And then we went back to amanda's house and played board games and ate stroopwafels until it got late. I am a terrible, smug winner.

Saturday we had a bbq at the house and all my friends were invited. Everyone who could make it did and good times were had by all. I even went into the pool. Then got out because I was FREEZING! But I did manage to go in up to my shoulders, so it counts!

On Sunday, my parents and I took Maggie out on the boat. She did not enjoy it as much as I hoped, but I think she was just scared of the newness. By the end, she was fairly calm. She even hammed it up a bit for the camera.
Summer 2012 boating - Say "Cheese!"

My mom caught the first non-sea robin fish. My dad caught the biggest non-sea robin fish. Both had to be thrown back because they were too small. I didn't fish at all. Instead I just enjoyed being out on the water. I hate beaches but love boats.

I pretty much passed out when I got back to the house. It was crazy. I was pretty much dead for 3 hours. My parents finally woke me for dinner and then after I went to tara's for more fun board games.

Monday was a good day to leave. I was exhausted physically and I hadn't yet exhausted my welcome. Or at least I thought it was a good day until the verrazano bridge shut down. A man tried to jump from the bridge so the entire upper deck was closed down to talk him out of it. All well and good for him but for me, traffic was backed up for MILES. Everyone had to take the lower deck, which scares me because if something happens, the bridge might crush me. (The stupid things I worry about.) But once I got around that, it was smooth all the way down to VA. It took 2 hours to get from my parents house to NJ. But compare that to the drive back from brooklyn on friday and it was nothing!

My dogs were very happy to be back home. They ran around in the yard and sniffed all their favorite things. Then cuddled in my bed. I guess they are not road trip dogs.
I'm taking Maggie out on the boat this weekend. She's a smart corgi, so she knows safety is the most important thing!

Maggie in her life jacket
It rained! Yay rain!

After over a week of 95+ degree weather, we had a big boomy thunderstorm this afternoon. When it was over, it was 20 degrees cooler outside. It's like a different world out there.

If it stays like this, I think I'll mow the weeds tomorrow. (After a week of 95+ degree weather, the grass has given up.)

I know Maggie is super happy. She's been seeking comfort in her little pool for the past week. It was so hot this morning, she was laying down in the water to cool off as much as possible. Normally she just sits in the water. I think she'll appreciate a walk tomorrow. She hasn't been on one of those since the derecho.
I need community college classes to start soon because I am bored. And lonely. I need friends and hobbies or something.

Maggie is taking my being home for granted. She expects me to play with her allllll the time. It's pretty annoying. She's cute though. I was gone for a couple hours today (csa pick up day) and when I returned, Maggie was wild and crazy with kisses for me. It was super cute.

And taking the dogs for multiple walks all day is good exercise. For all of us. Noname is totally exhausted by the end of our walk. She's so tired, she can't even jump up the tiny step to get through the front door. Poor baby.

Today we had a scary walk because a stupid neighbor a few houses down did not care that her child was running up to my dogs, shoving small filthy fingers in their faces.I kept telling the kid that my dogs were scared and she needed to leave them alone, but the stupid kid totally ignored me. To make things more stressful, their dog was running around the front yard barking and scaring my dogs. I finally had to yell to the mother, "My dogs are going to bite your kid if she doesn't leave them alone." Even then, the mother only half-heartedly called her kid back. It was scary because I know if my dogs bite, the law was going to side with the kid and stupid parent. My dogs are very sweet, but they do not like things suddenly appearing and being shoved in their faces. Finally I got my dogs away from the kid and was able to continue my walk. On the trip back, I carried them past that house of stupidity.

In happier news, today was a csa pick up day. Check out all the goodies!

Most of the stuff from the csa is picked by the farmers, but the annoying stuff (berries) is left in the fields and you have to get them yourself if you want them.

It took forever to pick the black raspberries. They are pretty much at the end of their season. Barely any good ones left on the vines. It was super windy while I was picking too, so I got all scratched up as the vines were swaying around wildly.

Blueberries were super easy as they are at peak of season. I filled my entire box with the berries from just one bush. And they're super sweet like candy. I picked a handful just to eat as I walked back to the main building. I'm probably going to finish the rest off like popcorn while I watch a movie.

I didn't know what I was doing when I picked the plums (what does a ripe plum look like?), so I had to guess based on how easily the fruit came off the trees. I took only the fruit that came off with a gentle tug. That sounds about right, right?

Then I had the embarrassment of having to google chives because I did not know they grew in bunches around flowers so I did not know I was looking at chives in the herb garden. And I only knew what the mint was because I was able to pinch and smell it. I am filled with shame because I don't know what my foods look like.

Actually, a really good thing about the farm is that they offer tours for schools and camps on where our food comes from. There were a ton of summer camps at the farm today on that tour. A lot of the kids seemed totally blown away with concepts like "eggs come from chickens" and "you can pull food right off of trees." And these weren't all little kids. Some of them looked to be in middle school ore maybe even a little older.

When I had finished picking all my fruit today, I took a small detour to the barn area because their miniature horse recently had a baby. It was very cute. But not as cute as the BABY GOAT. The baby goat almost killed me with adorable. It was so bouncy! And as it nursed, it wagged its little tail a million miles an hour. Then when it was full, it crashed straight to the ground for a nap. Only to wake up shortly after to bounce around again. I think I need to convince ben to buy me a baby goat.

The adult goats were cute too, sticking their heads out through the fence to beg for food. I bought a little bit of goat food and they ate it out of my hand while I pet them. Sooooo cute! Unfortunately many small children saw my army of tame goats and swarmed over me to pet them. I had to say goodbye to the goats for the time being. (Unless ben buys me a goat.)

Now I need to come up with more recipes for summer squash. Considering what a plentiful summer food it is, there are shockingly few recipes out there for it. Grill it, stew it, stuff it, or bake it into a bread. Ben doesn't like summer squash so I need to get creative.
Having an end in sight has made my days at work go by a lot easier. I've even been sleeping slightly better.

They asked me to stay until the 27th instead of my original 24th leave date. I am trying to leave gracefully so I agreed. I will be training my replacement. I wonder how long before she leaves screaming as well.

It's good I come home in a better mood these days because I discovered maggie had completely destroyed the lettuce and broccoli seedlings that I left by the back door to plant this weekend. That bad dog is lucky she's cute.
Work continues to be stressful. Will there ever be a week when I don't say that?

This week was more stressful than most because I could not work late to try to catch up on things. With ben out of town, I have to get home at a decent time to save the dogs.

In happy news, they are taking me off the AWF account. That account has been a mess from day 1 and I've never been able to catch up and get things back under control.

Unfortunately the account they are putting me on instead, League of Women Voters, is a very very active account with a lot of work involved. I will never catch up on anything. Ever.

I'm tired all the time.

I hope things get better in the summer. Summertime was usually a bit slower at defenders. I hope it is here too. I need to rest. Going full speed every day is killing me. I don't know ho anyone else there does it.

Other things:
- New dog walker did not kidnap my dogs. Yet. Still worried.
- Ate tiny pies on Thursday. If you are in georgetown, I recommend the tiny pies from Pie Sisters.
- Winter arrived. We have 35mph winds and wind chill in the single digits. Maggie does not understand why I don't want to go outside and play with her.
- Cleaned out the fridge. Horrifying things resided in the back.
- Bought comic books. Small child was totally blown away that you could have a subscription to all your favorite titles held for you at the store.
- Contemplating going to a korean bath house next weekend.
- Seasoning my cast iron pots today. It makes the house horrifically smoky, but it also keeps the house warm.
- I miss ben.
My 3 month review was this week. It went poorly. I have not been taking it well. This is the first negative review I've ever received.

I feel like they should fire me. I am doing my very best and if that is not good enough then I'm clearly not the right person for the job.

Their main complaint was that I don't communicate well enough with my supervisors, so they feel like I am not getting my work done. I feel like that is a ridiculous complaint. If the work IS getting done, then what does it matter how often I tell them I'm working on it.I always cc'd them on the first email (showing I am on the request) and the last one (showing the request was done). I don't see the point in wasting their time with the middle stuff unless I need their help.

So after the review, I started cc'ing my supervisors on absolutely everything. Even down to the tiny one-word "Thanks" or "Yes" ones. Because my judgment on an acceptable level of communication was clearly lacking.

I really thought I was doing a decent job. I was learning things fairly quickly and my clients have had no complaints. But my best is not good enough. It's absurd.

In happier news, Maggie went to puppy school today and had tons of fun. We worked on down, leave it, take it, and drop it. Maggie got the last 3 easily. She has some trouble with down because she's already so close to the ground. When I bring her treat to the ground, she can still grab it without bending her front legs. The instructor had me force her to crawl under my legs for the treat, tricking her into getting down all the way.

Now she's sleepy from all the excitement. I think I'll take her to nap with me this afternoon.
Between my job and my commute, I have n time for anything. :(

Couple things:

Work - Has been super crazy busy. I hardly have time to even catch my breath. And I am still behind all the time. I'm getting tired of this. They clearly don't have enough people for the work load.I am trying to run at 100% capacity every day, but I'm not a robot. I can't keep this up.

Commute - Metro has been a disaster the last couple weeks. First of all, the crazy up and down weather has caused the rails to crack on several lines. Other train systems haven't had a problem, but metro uses rails not designed for this sort of weather. And then, they recent bought a bad batch of breaks, so a part on the breaks keeps cracking and falling off the trains. Add on the usual door issues and sick passengers and you have the commute from hell for weeks on end. For several nights, I've had to take the bus through dc because metro was so horrifically backed up. Best part? Metro announced last week they were going to raise fares.

Home life - Ben is wonderful. No complaints about him. He keeps me sane despite the madness during the workday.

Dogs - Maggie recently started puppy school. She seems to be enjoying it. In the first class we went over "watch me" and "sit." Maggie knew those already though. In the second class, we went over loose leash walking and sitting for strangers. Maggie is having some trouble with the leash walking. She wants to speed ahead all the time. I'm sure she'll get it eventually though. She's smart. Noname on the other hand is a grumpy grump. I wonder if she'll ever chill out. She's cuddled in my lap right now, so she's good for the moment.

Cooking - I have made a few tasting things these last few weeks, but had no time to take pictures. Thismushroom pie was very easy to make, filling, and rather tasty. It also reheated very well. And this vegetarian cassoulet was also easy to make. It was a good, filling stew to have after a long day at work and a long cold commute.The flavors are not very complicated though, so if you like more complexity, it would probably be good to serve it with some herb bread perhaps.



January 2015

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