Catching Up: October 21, 2022 Edition


[+] Baseball. Unfortunately, Seattle is out of the playoffs, but the 18-inning game that knocked them out was amazing.

On the plus side, the LA Losers and the Cleveland Goof-Ups are out as well. Now if the Yankees could please go ahead and lose their last two games so that all three of Satan’s teams are out of the play-offs…

[+] Work. Work is crazy, but I’m at least getting to tutor some classes I like this quarter instead of just HSERV and Interpersonal Communications. FERPA prevents me from telling you the better stories I have about my students, so I’ll just say that I have a few who are… special.

[+] Media I’m binge-watching a lot of “Court Cam” on the A&E website, and it has been interesting. I’ll move to “Cold Case Files” eventually, but this has been keeping me entertained.

Catching Up: August 7, 2022 Edition

It’s 12:39 a.m. on August 7th, and I have very little to tell you about my life because I’m eating, drinking, working with students, watching too much YouTube, and not sleeping near enough. All the student stuff is kinda sorta protected by FERPA (and I’m not feeling like getting into the Come to Jesus conversations I’m having to have with a few of them), so here is the stuff I’ve been watching for the last week or so on YouTube. There’s A LOT of them, so I’m putting a cut in this post. Click on “Continue reading” to see the whole shebang. (And yes, I have a weird YouTube algorithm.)

Continue reading

Catching Up: July 29, 2022 Edition


[+] This week, I discovered Steel Magnificat, the blog of Mary Pezzulo. I had seen friends link up stories from her blog before, but I wish I had taken the time to read her blog before now. She is an amazing writer and an even more incredible person.

[+] We’re having a church picnic at a member’s farm on the 7th, and I spent this week arranging to *NOT* have to figure out how to put worship online that Sunday. I’ve been out there before and the part of the farm we’ll be at is kinda primitive. I would probably have to record worship and upload it later… and I don’t have the space on my phone to record a 90-minute service. Broadcasting it off of my laptop would require really dedicated Internet access, and I really don’t think they have it in that part of the property. Also… I haven’t had a service off from running things and doing Zoom (we’re talking Sundays, Holy Week, and funerals) since April 25, 2021. I think I (and everyone else on the committee who switches around from Sunday to Sunday) can use a Sunday off.

[+] Daniel had an ADHD appointment scheduled for Wednesday morning at 8. My alarm didn’t go off and Daniel woke me up at 8:22. I called them apologetically and rescheduled it. They were cold to me on the phone, and I don’t blame them one bit because I know how much of a headache it is from working in a clinic when people are no-shows.

[+] One of my new guilty pleasures is Code Blue Cam. It is videos from police body cams, and it’s interesting to see the job from that perspective. I am not an ACAB person by any stretch (as I have relatives in law enforcement), and I am absolutely in favor of police having body cams that are not allowed to be turned off. (A lot of jurisdictions have civil and criminal penalties for officers who do so.) The department that seems to have the majority of videos right now is the La Crosse Police Department, and one fo the things that surprised me is that they have to put their guns in a lockbox when they head into the station.

Catching Up…

I haven’t posted since Kelly’s last Quick Takes because I’ve been busy. What have I been doing, pray tell? Well…

[+] I put my church’s Advent devotional book together. It was called “Savior of the Nations, Come” and I asked people in the parish what had been saving them since March 2020. Their answers make up the devotional book. I even made a playlist of songs that had been saving me since March 2020, and I’m sharing it below if you need some tunes.

[+] I’ve been working intermittently. Two problem students got taken off of my tutoring roster, so I was down to just a handful of students and much less than the 19 hours I had on paper. A few of them just needed me to correct papers for them, so that further cut my hours down. I’ve been having sinus and asthma crud, so being able to go back to bed after getting Daniel off to school for a nap is not a bad thing.

[+] I’ve been trying to socialize my spooky paws. Doc finally moved out of the guest room two weekends ago and set up housekeeping under my parents’ king-sized bed. This was fine until it came time for Mr. Sissy Stripes to go to the vet. It took a herculean effort on the part of Mom and me to get him out, and we only ended up getting him into his cage because he fled to the bathroom which is a more confined space. (We figured out that getting in his cage is a sign that he is going to a new shelter, so no wonder he hates it!)

Here’s my striped prince at the vet. Doesn’t he have beautiful stripes? Aren’t his eyes a lovely green color?

My beautiful boy.

At the vet, he eventually stopped fighting us and let me hold him. (The room had a ton of Feliway in it.) His tech and vet wrapped him in that towel (which was sprayed down with Feliway) to take him elsewhere for shots and bloodwork. They returned him with him looking like the happiest cat in the world. He had four women loving on him and telling him how gorgeous he was for 40 minutes, so his little kitty ego got scratched. The good news is that he’s in amazing health, but the bad news is that he tested strongly positive for FIV on the antigen test. Mom is paying for the PCR test, but it’s probably going to be a definite FIV diagnosis. It means that we need to keep eyes on him and make sure he isn’t getting any viruses or infections. Minion will be tested for it the next time he is at the vet, but we’re not super worried because it’s usually spread by saliva and bite wounds. (We’re sad, but FIV isn’t a death sentence.)

When we got home, it was like Doc realized he was home and not in a new shelter. He let us hold and cuddle him… and then disappeared under my parents’ bed. I found him under my bed later that day and did get pets, but I made the mistake of trying to take him out so he could have my window… and I’m in deep trouble for that still.

[+] I’m working on Christmas presents… from last Christmas. I’ve been working on Mom’s socks from last year and I had to restart sock #1 on Friday during therapy. Thankfully, this iteration (#4 or #5) has been going OK.

7 Quick Takes: A Harder Week Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Update on the sinus infection. I’m on Day 7 of my first round of Azithromycin. I’m not feeling amazing, but I’m not coughing to the point of choking. I’m still a bit stuffy, and I’m unfortunately almost out of Sudafed. (This is a problem because the regular Sudafed that you get from behind the pharmacy counter is the only thing that works to help me sleep… and my local pharmacy is out of it.)

— 2 —

Update on Jethro. Mom took Jethro back to the vet on Tuesday, and his bloodwork was trashed to the point where he could have had a blood clot if he kept going. The vet told her the prognosis, and she asked if they would be able to put him to sleep that day. When they said “yes” and told her she could have as long as she needed with Jet, she called Dad to come and sit with her. Jethro seemed to sense that it was his time because he relaxed and curled up in both Mom’s lap and Dad’s lap before they sedated him to give him the final shot. (Meanwhile, I had come out of my room after finishing with a student, and I figured out what was going on when I found Dad gone.) He went peacefully. We know that he is with his brother Homer again, and that is comforting since Homer’s death three years ago was really hard on all of us. (We adopted Minion the day after Homer passed away. He helped us heal.)

Minion has had a tiring schedule of guarding Mom and cuddling her (because Jet is gone and Jet was Mom’s lap kitty) in addition to his normal Mama cuddles with me. I’ve got feelers out on Petfinder for a Maine Coon cat or at least another one that might be a good buddy for Minion, who is definitely feeling Jet’s absence even if Jet was a cranky old man.

— 3 —

Why I like living in a blue state. My governor gets crap from the Republicans in the eastern part of Washington about the mask mandate and the various vaccine mandates, but we’re not in the mess that Idaho is currently in.

Why do I believe that Idaho is that bad off? Well… it might have something to do with Idaho sending a bunch of their worst patients to Washington to take up our hospital beds. (The stupider people in eastern Washington have been going to Sandpoint and Coeur d’ Alene to shop because Idaho doesn’t have a mask mandate, so I have no sympathy for hospitals in those Washington counties because they’re doing it to themselves.) The Republicans in Idaho have been bickering over COVID precautions to the point where the lieutenant governor took the opportunity to issue an executive order banning mask mandates while the governor was out of state. (The governor canceled the executive order when he returned.)

Do I love having to mask up all the time? No. However, Governor Inslee issued the mandates two months ago because he gives a crap about the health of the people in the state. The members of Idaho’s state government seem to be only thinking of themselves.

— 4 —

Q & A with a nurse. A member of r/nursing on Reddit did a Q & A in order to dispel a bunch of myths about COVID, the vaccines, etc. Other than a few pieces of bad language, it’s a good read and explains about why the COVID vaccines were developed so quickly.

— 5 —

Worth watching. I had to watch this TED Talk in order to proofread a paper, and I really recommend it.

— 6 —

How have I been dealing with all of this? I am crocheting while I work with students or watch YouTube. I’m watching a lot of “Live PD” on YouTube because it relaxes me for some strange reason.

— 7 —

Some positivity this week. I was doing my weekly grocery shopping on Tuesday when a woman stopped me. She told me that she had seen me with Daniel the previous week and that I was doing a really good job with him. She then patted me on the shoulder and told me I was a good mother.

I honestly almost cried in the middle of Haggen when she said that to me. (I’m tearing up now thinking about it.) I don’t know if she knew how much I needed to hear all of that. It’s honestly getting me through the harder parts of the week, and it also is giving me patience with Daniel because someone out there thinks I’m doing things right.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: First Week of School Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

First day back on campus. I had my first drop-in tutoring shift back on campus on Tuesday. It was surreal to say the least. There are definitely fewer people, everyone is masked up, and there are lots of plexiglass boundaries to keep people separate when using the computers in front of the enrollment office. The door to my drop-in room was open when I got there, but it ended up autolocking later… which meant that I accidentally locked the people out who were joining me an hour into my shift. Oops! The security guard letting them in was one I know, and he laughed at me.

Once they got in, they let me know what the opening protocols were… which was good because apparently, we don’t have a paper with the list on it. I think I’ll have to rectify that…

— 2 —

Full load. One of the other tutors who handles Communications has moved on, leaving me as the only one doing it this quarter. In fact, I’m the only one doing Accounting, Office/Business Technology (only 2 classes left as the department shut down in June and these classes are general education ones), Human Services, Communications, Sociology, and pretty much any class in the Humanities. I’ve been booked solid since last week. I have more work hours than I’m supposed to have, but there’s nobody else to cover the requests.

If nothing else, I’m putting my interdisciplinary B.A. and part of my Master’s degree to good use!

— 3 —

Working together. For a couple of the classes, I’m double booked where I have two students sharing a time slot. The first session of that went far better than I could have imagined, and it turns out that the students have multiple classes together. It’s a win-win because they get a study buddy, my boss satisfies two tutoring requests without adding excess hours (at least in those cases), and I get to listen and learn from the discussion.

— 4 —

Seeing old friends. I’ve got two students assigned to me that have been part of the program I serve since before the pandemic, and I am SOOOO excited to see them again. I would absolutely enjoy curling up in my ivory tower and doing Accounting spreadsheets, but these two are part of the way things used to be for me and I *REALLY* missed my students.

I also have my first Human Services student back with me this quarter for an OBT class, so I am positively jazzed to get to work with her again. She and I absolutely clicked during the first full quarter I was working only online, and I’ve missed her the past few quarters.

— 5 —

Ummm… yeah. We were going to start doing live choir again… and then the Delta variant decided to dopeslap the country. After Daniel had the potential exposure and I had to get tested, emails started flying between the members of the choir, and the decision was made to do virtual anthems for the near future. I haven’t actually looked at the music or my part for the one I have to get recorded by Saturday night, but I’ve been singing the hymn (Siyahamba) for 20+ years in Zulu, English, and Spanish, so I think I’ll be OK. 🙂 (Don’t tell my choir director!)

— 6 —

Oh hey, another devotional book project! Because I hate myself and I clearly am not doing mearly enough right now, I have a devotional book project in process that was put on my heart by God during the week Daniel was quarantined and the two of us were taking a drive in the car to preserve our collective sanity.

Retroactie prayers for my ability not to overextend myself would be appreciated. Please and thank you!

— 7 —

My YouTube consumption. So what do I watch when I’m this overextended? How about people with tats and piercings doing snake surgery and puppeting deformed reticulated pythons with an attitude! (Probably not safe for work or children or people who are spooked by snakes.)

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: COVID, Politics, and 21st Blogging Anniversary Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Andrew Fauci vs. Rand Paul. I saw this meme today and was curious about it.

Apparently, Rand Paul (who has a medical degree but is not certified by any reputable board) decided to repeat the fallacy about Anthony Fauci having ties to the lab in Wuhan that created COVID. Sorry Rand, I’m with Dr. Fauci on this one, given that he actually has the credentials to back him up, something you don’t have.

— 2 —

Dispatch from a doctor. My friend Katie is a pro-life Catholic hospitalist (adding the adjectives in case people might listen better with them), and she posted the following message:

Vax up!

For those who aren’t aware, a “hospitalist” is a doctor who takes care of you IN THE HOSPITAL. (The red spot on her forehead is from the faceshield she wears in addition to her mask when she walks into a patient’s room.) In other words, she’s seeing scary cases coming into the hospital again. Listen to Katie. Vax up!

— 3 —

Break-through cases. For those who are going to cite the fact that there are still people who are vaccinated that get COVID, here’s the difference between someone who is vaccinated and someone who is unvaccinated:

Vax vs. un-vax

— 4 —

Make good choices. I thought this was interesting advice.

Make good choices.

— 5 —

Finally, someone putting my feelings into words. For those people who say that other people should deal with [insert thing] because they had to deal with it, I have a message for you:

Weird, miserable energy.

— 6 —

U.S. residential school stories. For those who remember me blogging on residential schools for Native Americans a few weeks ago, one of the things I promised to do was learn more about the issue in the USA. Here are a few stories I read this week:

AP: US churches reckon with traumatic legacy of Native schools

AP: Tribe claims remains of kids who died at assimilation school

Salt Lake Tribune: Lost lives, lost culture: The forgotten history of Indigenous boarding schools

— 7 —

My blog is old enough to drink. So, um, my blog turned 21 on July 20th. *raises my can of Coke to it*

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.