semperfiona: (castle)
This afternoon Chris and I are headed to Chicagoland to fetch his daughter and her boyfriend. She'll be living with us for the foreseeable; the boyfriend starts college on the other side of the river in August.

We've been working like fiends for the last month trying to make the basement ready for them. We got stairs put in to make the attic usable, and have been moving the enormous pile of stuff out of the basement and up to the attic instead. It's not finished by a long chalk, although we've made huge progress. But the kids will help with the rest of it, and we'll help them paint and furnish the space. She's talking about purple and red--a big change from the current cafe-au-lait color scheme.

Life is going to be a bit different around here. Sitting around in just a bathrobe, like I'm doing right now and have been doing all week, is going to become not-possible. I think I mentioned that my desk at work is currently non-existent? Should be back on Monday, but I've been displaced all week while they remodel our cubicles. Photos of the progress and updates from the facilities manager show that they're not going to be *quite* as bad as I'd feared--we're getting higher side walls than originally anticipated, so at least we'll not be on top of each other that way.
semperfiona: (Default)
Lazy morning snuggles with [livejournal.com profile] mac_arthur_park, waffles-n-bacon made with love by [livejournal.com profile] lavendargrrl, Kidlet in the corner with her computer, [livejournal.com profile] ohari in the comfy chair talking to his mom...life is very very good.


Posted via m.livejournal.com.

semperfiona: (alicia)
Thursday
Massage that didn't happen. I had a massage appt for 6:30, but when I showed up they said it had been cancelled and rescheduled for 2/11. I recalled, then, that no one had called to confirm it. None of us, however, had cancelled it, and I never make appointments for Mondays. I left, somewhat disgruntled, but after a few minutes regained some gruntle and called them back to cancel the 2/11 and make yet an appt for Sunday morning.

Polymunch @ Shameless Grounds. Ampersand earrings are a hit, and give me an excuse to schmoop about [livejournal.com profile] mac_arthur_park to some people who hadn't heard about her yet. Not that I really needed an excuse, of course. *schmoop*

Friday
Pennie's BBQ. Enormous servings of meat; Sisuile's "Jumbo Rib Tips" was apparently referring to the size of the entree rather than the pieces of meat--or maybe both--and was a pile of meat about the size of a breadbox. Rosa and I split a full slab of baby back ribs, and unusually, she had leftovers and I ate my whole share. Apparently running 3.5 miles earlier in the evening had left me hungry. Food was good, though not my favorite BBQ sauce ever. Tammie found it way too sweet; I agree but I didn't find it so sweet as to be untasty.

Saturday
Swimstrong 2013. Signed up a month or so ago for this charitable event: a one hour endurance swim. I made 2633 yards, which is nowhere near the distance that some others got (upwards of 4300!) but was pretty close to what I expected. I'd told them I thought I'd get about 2750; I might have, if I hadn't had to stop three times to adjust my cap and goggles.

Fuzzy's Tacos. [livejournal.com profile] ona_tangent introduced me to this place and Saturday I took the family. Everyone enjoyed, so yay.

Last Saturday Strip. Bi erasure FTW. (Not.) The show is run by a bi woman, Charlotte Sumtimes, who comments every time that she's doing it for the LGBT community, for and by people of all sizes, genders and sexual orientations, and it generally lives up to that. But Saturday's show was produced by two of the drag queens in Charlotte's honor, and at one point one of them did a "roll call" of the audience: lesbians, gay men, straight people. And then she stopped, leaving me annoyed and unaccounted for. The show itself was also different from the usual, in that it was entirely burlesque babes stripping this month, several of them locally-famous performers who don't usually appear in LSS shows, with drag kings and queens doing an indifferently funny roast of Charlotte.

Sunday
Kolache Factory. We had a groupon for Kolache Factory which was due to expire (today), so Chris had tried to go redeem it on Saturday, only they close at 2:00pm and he arrived too late. So I went yesterday instead, and collected four savory and eight fruit-filled kolache. Basically they're filled buns, and quite tasty too. The store has tables and coffee/beverage service, but I got mine to go.

And today
Barely awake, zoning out in front of the computer (as you do), I get a call from Tammie with a flat tire. Meet her at the repair shop, back home to work. I was planning to go to see Christine for lunch today and schmoop at her, but she was too tired due to her children not sleeping last night. I briefly thought I'd go see Rachel instead, but no car. So I made myself a BBQ quesadilla out of Friday's leftovers and am back here with my computer again.

So that was my last few days, interspersed with snuggles, TV watching, insufficient sleep, missing Alicia, and attempting to glare the calendar into submission.
semperfiona: (amber)
In the living room at Rivendell, last night...

Chris: What's green and red and goes round and round and round?

Me: A frog in a Cuisinart. I've met the sphinx.

Love is.

Feb. 15th, 2009 01:05 pm
semperfiona: A pile of conversation hearts (love hearts)
Valentine's Day was a busy one for the Rivendell household. [livejournal.com profile] lavendargrrl went to work at the yarn shop, and I logged in remotely and spent three hours or so working myself. Then I sneaked upstairs to wrap the supersecrets before [livejournal.com profile] ohari, the Baby and I took ourselves to Poly Munch.

But not directly. I was driving, and Chris doled out the directions for the side trip as we went.

Chris: Go north on Kingshighway.

Me: Is it okay if I pick it up at Chippewa, or are we going somewhere between?

Chris: No, that's fine.

*drive drive drive*

Chris: Turn right at Vandeventer; go .4 mile. Turn right at Shaw; go 264 feet.

Me: Are we going to Gringo Jones or the Bug Store? Cause that's all there is right there...

Gringo Jones it was. My big Valentine's present is a new pair of griffins for the front steps, to replace the ones that went walkies three years ago during the time this house was being rented out. (Tenants said, "We never saw them!" Yeah right. But I discovered their absence after I'd already returned their deposit.) They weren't in stock and will have to be ordered, so we'll probably get them in mid-March. This time they will be epoxied to the porch, TYVM.

Stopped by the String Store to check in on Tammie and see if we could extricate her for the rest of the afternoon. String Store was bouncy with puppies (a 12-week-old chocolate lab/shepherd/something mix that Sandy is fostering, as well as her own two dogs), but we got Tammie out of there anyway.

Off to Munch, where we ran into Modrid whom I haven't seen in quite a while, as well as most of the Usual Suspects and [livejournal.com profile] soraidh.

"Once you fall under the spell of Rivendell, forever shall it dominate your destiny..." - [livejournal.com profile] reannon (Correct the quote, ekd, if you remember, cause I don't think this is quite right at the beginning.)

After much eating of not-very-good pizza, Rosa had a date with Daddy. They had a Valentine's Day reservation at White Castle. Yeah, the idea boggled my mind too. But in any case we dropped her off and took ourselves to our next event: Coraline at Ronnies. Where we bumped into and sat next to [livejournal.com profile] tsita and her mystery date. *wink*

Before the movie, there was a text update from [livejournal.com profile] transplantmom...we decided to invite her to join us for our dinner reservation after the movie.

Movie was fantastic, in the original sense as well as the modern one. We, or some subset of us, will be going back to take the Baby. Not as creepy as it could have been, but plenty of satisfactory creepiness.

Then dinner at Onesto, where the Valentine's Day theme was "Lady and the Tramp". Tables had been re-dressed in red and white checked tablecloths, chianti bottles with candles, the whole bit. There was a photographer doing pictures with a backdrop from the movie and bits of spaghetti for posing; of course we had one taken. Tammie convinced them to give us the file, so when that arrives I will post it for your delectation. The chef had come up with some fabulous specials and desserts. Dinner was lovely, and it was great that Selena was able to join us. Tammie and I had wild mushroom spaghetti, Selena had lobster and goat cheese not-ravioli (they were stuffed pasta, but I can't remember the correct name), and Chris had a pizza.

Just now, Chris and I got home from breakfast and a quick grocery trip, just in time for Rosa to arrive back from Daddy's house. Daddy has a date (woohoo!) so we're "babysitting". Baby and I are going to decorate sugar cookie hearts for Valentine's Day. Maybe there will be pictures later.

And after that I have to work some more. Being on jury duty this week has put me quite a bit behind on my project due Monday.
semperfiona: (castle)
[livejournal.com profile] bbwoof asked Tammie and me a question Sunday night, "How do you guys get so many of these wonderful impromptu gatherings to happen?"

We said something about three people who have cellphones and aren't afraid to use them, but I think there's more to it. I'm not sure we ever sat down and determined to do so, but from the very beginning we made hospitality one of our family's primary values. There were the weekend-long poly parties at the Washington House and monthly game nights at the Lake House. Even so, Rivendell House has been even more of a center for gatherings.

I think it's because of the name of the house. Years ago, when Ray and I were living in England, I was taken with the (disappearing) English habit of naming houses in lieu of numbering them. We had no house of our own, but we planned that on our return we would soon buy one. I ordered a house-name plaque on spec, and chose the name Rivendell in honor of my beloved Tolkien books.

Frodo was now safe in the Last Homely House east of the Sea. That house was, as Bilbo had long ago reported, "a perfect house, whether you like food or sleep, or story-telling or singing, or just sitting and thinking best, or a pleasant mixture of them all." Merely to be there was a cure for weariness, fear and sadness.
--The Fellowship of the Ring, Book II, Chapter I "Many Meetings"


Before we bought the house, Ray and I used to talk about the "South City Palace" (SCP) we would someday own. And we did, and the nameplaque was duly installed. But he and I never called the house by name; we always called it the SCP: an exclusionary monicker, I think now.

For years, both while we lived there together and, after the divorce, when Rosa and I lived there alone, delivery people would knock on the door and ask quizzically, "Is this the $NAME residence?" When I answered in the affirmative, they always asked me why I left the previous owners' name on the wall. "It's the house's name," I'd say, and they'd look at me even funnier. Until the movies came out, and suddenly I no longer get questions.

In the two years since Chris, Tammie and I moved (back) to the city we have started calling the house by name, our friends call us and the house Rivendell more or less interchangeably, and spontaneous gatherings have been more and more commonplace.
semperfiona: Triskadelion jewelry (tri knot)
Spotted in [livejournal.com profile] rednikki's journal:

The Bacon Flowchart

Contracts

Dec. 15th, 2006 05:51 pm
semperfiona: (Default)
Someone reposted a link to a poly contract today, and I started thinking about my own history with contracts.

Back in 1998, after Ray and I had started having marital issues but were still trying to work them out through counseling, I wanted to attend Ambercon East in Boston (I wanted to meet [livejournal.com profile] devilmuse IRL, as well as do some face-to-face Amber gaming).

He was paranoid that I was going with the intention of cheating on him, and would not accept any of my assurances. The counselor suggested a written contract, and while I felt it unnecessary--not to mention insulting--I went along with it. The contract I wrote up contained exactly one sentence. It said "I promise to honor and respect our marriage during my trip to Boston."

Meanwhile, he had written a long detailed list of all the things I was not allowed to do while away. It included everything from "I will not get a tattoo or piercing" to "I will not engage in [long list of behaviors starting with kissing and going on to sex] with anyone". (He may have specified names; I don't remember.) Anyone who knows me will guess what my reaction to that was: immediate seeking of loopholes and forgotten items. I do not do well with long lists of rules created by someone else to prescribe my behavior.

I can't remember, in the end, which contract got signed, but I think I did actually convince him to use mine. In either case I chose to live by mine: a much more far-reaching document.

What is of course lacking from both of them is any indication of what his responsibilities were. That "wasn't important" at the time, because I was the one who had expressed a desire to open our relationship, so I was the one who had to prove myself.

It's my belief that if you can't trust me without a piece of paper, you won't trust me with one either. This was borne out by the fact that Ray accused me in his annulment testimony of having cheated on him on that very weekend in Boston!
semperfiona: (kiss)
I just gotta rave about what a wonderful girlfriend [livejournal.com profile] lavendargrrl is!

Last night, Chris and I went to the baseball game. I'd left for work with neither socks nor a coat, and he didn't have a coat either. There was a coat here, so I wore that, but she scootered out to the MetroLink parking lot to bring us Chris's jacket and a pair of socks for me.

And when she showed up, she had *also* brought us a piping hot thermos of hot chocolate--which I managed to get into the ballpark with--that kept us nice and toasty through the four innings of pathetic baseball that we stayed for.

Love love love love love.

Pressies!

Apr. 13th, 2006 11:39 am
semperfiona: (tigger)
We had the family birthday celebration last night because Rosa's back with Daddy tonight until Sunday. Imo's pizza, chocolate cake, and pressies. Tonight we're going out for Thai food, at my request. Also I think we'll stop by the city house to plant the first present I noticed: a dwarf Winesap apple tree that I spotted as soon as I got home because it was on the front porch with a bow on it.

From Rosa I got a fuzzy poster of fairies. She has given everyone fuzzy posters for their birthday for about a year now; I think she's hoping to get to color them herself or at least together with the recipient. This one has imprinted designs that show up when you color it.

From Chris and Tammie I got a white iPod Nano, iPod "gloves" to protect it, some Godiva truffles, T.S. Eliot's Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats as illustrated by Edward Gorey, and a forthcoming copy of "The Complete Shakespeare Sonnets" read by such notables as Al Pacino and Patrick Stewart.

Now I've really gotta figure out how to rip my audio cassettes. Or more accurately, I know how, I just gotta do it.
semperfiona: Triskadelion jewelry (tri knot)
Feb 10, after the SLuRP munch, Tammie and Rosa and I were taking Cait home. I happened to have gone the wrong way, and was about to correct my path when Tammie realized we'd be passing right next to Mavrik Romantika. A couple of weeks prior, we had noticed some very pretty rings in the display window while on our way to Ben and Jerry's. Tammie said, "Should we?" and we waffled a little but pulled into the parking lot. Cait and Rosa stayed with us for a while, but after Rosa got antsy Cait took her next door for an ice cream.

Most of an hour later, after looking at and trying on a whole range of rings, as well as talking to the salesman about his own choice, we decided on and purchased three of these tungsten carbide rings. Only the one in Tammie's size was in stock at that location, so he wrapped it up in a very nice orange box "imported from Italy!" and put it in a gift bag, and she went on Monday to pick up the other two from the Clayton location.

Upon arriving home, we found Chris and Woof working away on loading the first batch of furniture into our rented U-Haul. Chris was annoyed that it took us so long to get back, and was not at all pleased when the answer to "What have you been doing?!" was "This and that," but he let it go anyway.

Later, after the loading was finished, we were making plans to take Woof to dinner and called Becky to invite her as well. Tammie told Woof that he should tell her we found a really good Israeli store--the owners, most of the employees and most of the stock at Mavrik come from Israel--but we'd tell her later. Well, she wasn't going to wait for the goods, so Tammie took the phone and went into a back room to explain.

Tuesday morning 2/14, while we were lying in bed in the morning, Tammie brought all the rings and gave us each our own. We've been bouncing around showing them to everyone who'll stand still long enough, ever since.

It really is a seriously cool ring. Who ever heard of a tungsten carbide ring? It turns out it's nearly the hardest metal available--it can't be scratched except by diamond, corundum, and other tungsten carbide items, it doesn't tarnish, and it takes a mirror-like shine. Sure, you get fingerprints on it and the like, but they wipe right off.

And the coolest thing of all? Ooh shiny! T'other morning, I stood in the entryway at the Lake House for several minutes just watching the sparkles from a sunbeam reflecting off my ring. Driving to and from work is like having a tiny discoball in my car.

A few days later, Rosa was playing with one of the ringboxes and wrapped a piece of candy up in it. She gave it to Ray when he arrived as a "present". We had to stop him taking the box away with him. "It was never hers to give away; that's one of the boxes our commitment rings came in." Interestingly, he made nary a comment about "commitment rings" and in fact still hasn't said anything about it.
semperfiona: (Default)
that on the one workday we all get up early enough to eat a fine big
breakfast of blueberry pancakes...

it's a food day at the office. There's an enormous Mardi Gras spread in
the breakroom.
semperfiona: (castle)
Something at stltoday's forum actually caught my interest sufficiently to post a comment.

What's the definition of a family?
semperfiona: (demon baby)
Singing Sunday
Monkey Monday (sometimes My Way Monday--that is to say Chris's Way Monday or Mommy's Way Monday)
Tickle Tuesday
Wiggle Wednesday
Thinking Thursday
Family Friday
Sleep-in Saturday
semperfiona: (try anything once)
Japanese has been on my mind again of late. Last week, Britton sent me a link to this story (or one like it), about a hamster and snake OOSSLQ. At the end of his email, he commented "Shinji-rare-nai (Believed-to be possible-not)." This tiny snippet had an interesting effect. First, I was slightly affronted that he felt the need to translate it. But then, I quickly realized that if he had not, it would have taken me quite a while, and probably recourse to the dictionary, to figure out the meaning. Then, I was disappointed in my forgetfulness, because it's a quite simple construction and something I learned very early in my Japanese language lessons. Though I remembered the construction; it was the original verb that I didn't recognize.

A couple months ago, Tammie looked up information for me about the Japanese classes available at UMSL. She even found a number for the department advisor so I could talk to her about what course program might best suit my particular needs. I didn't actually call as yet, but I'm feeling like I should.

Then even more recently, she pointed out to me a scheduled trip to Japan through UMSL. $2500 for about three weeks. That's a very reasonable price, but it's still daunting from our position of financial struggle.
I'm dreaming...
semperfiona: Triskadelion jewelry (tri knot)
From the [livejournal.com profile] altfriday5:

1. Do you celebrate any romantic anniversaries? If so, which ones?
What dates do they mark (e.g. date you met, date you first had sex, date
you had your commitment ceremony)?


[livejournal.com profile] ohari, [livejournal.com profile] lavendargrrl and I celebrate the day we met,
December 13, 2002. That date was also pretty much the beginning of our
relationship. I have a soft spot for Christmas Day as an anniversary,
being our first all-three snuggling, and Dec 30 (I'm pretty sure) as
first sex, and Feb 1 of last year when we all moved in together, and so
forth, but Dec 13 is the one we mutually observe. Our first anniversary,
12/13/03, we got matching tattoos of the symbol in the icon, so in a
sense it's also the date of a commitment ceremony.

2. Do you observe any non-romantic anniversaries (i.e., of positive
or negative events that happened in your life)? If so, what do they
commemorate?


Coincidentally, C&T&my anniversary is the day after my wedding
anniversary with Ray (12/12/92), which I usually remember with a shade
of regret during the week prior but do not celebrate.

There are several dates I keep track of for their personal importance
(of which 12/12 is one, and I listed several others above), but I
wouldn't say so much that I observe them. I do usually have some
thoughts on the day about what the day means to me. Such dates also
include 6/26/99, the day I met Jen; 11/11/00, the day I moved out of the
house I lived in with Ray; and 11/14/01, the day my divorce became
final.

3. Do you observe any non-personal anniversaries (i.e. of historical
events, such as VE Day, December 6)? If so, what do they commemorate,
and why do you honour them?


Not really, except for the fact that my move-out date happened to be on
Veteran's/Armistice Day, but that was mostly coincidence; its timing had
far more to do with deer season than historic wars.

4. What event do you think the world should remember annually, that
it doesn't?


I can't think of anything.

5. Have you ever forgotten an important anniversary? What
happened?


No.



The Questioner says: Don't forget your links!
semperfiona: (Default)
Family
======
Move to City House
Straighten up finances
Make a baby
Better organization at home
Eliminate unneeded "stuff": craigslist? ebay? bookcrossing? freecycle?
Dance lessons for Rosa
Buy Tammie a car
Housecleaning service
Monthly or bimonthly game nights
Unpack everything


Me
==
Get a different job
Write. Specifically, finish "La Llorona"
Attend at least one Ambercon
Come out to Mom & Dad
Lose thirty pounds
Exercise
Maintain and build friendships
Make more time to spend with lovers
Get back on instant messenger services
Draw or paint
Play the piano more often
Track and review books read and movies viewed on [livejournal.com profile] fionas_books
Post more on LJ
semperfiona: (unicorn flag)
Bleah. Working at midnight when my loves are cuddled asleep downstairs sucks.

However, I am now finished and I am off to go cuddle them too.

In other news, I got new ink tonight as a third anniversary present! It's a heraldic unicorn, on my right calf.
semperfiona: (rain leaves)
I'm on the edge of tears here. I have been thinking about Kirk a lot
lately, and I finally sat down and wrote him a letter. When I used
google to find his address, I found out he's got a website. At the very
bottom of the "Family and Friends" page, it says, "Family of Choice: [my
name]". We've been awfully out of touch lately; it touches my heart to
know he still thinks of me that way too.

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semperfiona: (Default)
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