7 Quick Takes: Family, Mask Shaming, and Death Planning with the Kardashians Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Family gathering. Ohmigoshohmigoshohmigosh! I GOT TO SEE MY TWIN BROTHER, SISTER-IN-LAW, AND THEIR SPAWN FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 15 MONTHS!!!!!!! It was so worth having to quarantine, do Zoom/Facebook messenger calls, and mask up for a year to stay safe so that I could see them this past weekend. Braden was a few months away from turning 2 when I saw him in February 2020, and he is now almost 3 years old. In the time between visits, he developed a personality.

We’ll see them up here this weekend.

— 2 —

Really?!?!? When I arrived at my local grocery store, this is what I saw…

Haggen sells out.

Apparently, the corporate people at Haggen are dumbkopfs because we’re *STILL* having double-digit case counts daily here (which is an increase) and they made masks optional for those who are unvaccinated. Yeah… those are the people who are at-risk for contracting COVID because they’re not protected. The CDC did not say that everyone could unmask (just those who are fully vaccinated and only outside and in certain other situations), and I can guarantee that it’s going to be the unvaccinated people that are not masking in public here because the vaccinated people are still wearing them! (Close to 90% of shoppers were, but I live in a blue pocket of my indigo county, so that was to be expected.) There are a lot of really irritated Haggen customers because we’re not out of the woods yet in terms of COVID risk here. The handful of friends I have who are not fully vaccinated due to pregnancy or anaphylaxis with the first shot are really hesitant to shop there due to this decision. (They’re all masking of course, but they’re investing in KN95 masks because they are aware of their risk.)

— 3 —

Mistakes in mask-wearing. When you wear your mask, COVER YOUR FREAKING NOSE. It defeats the purpose of a mask if you leave your nose hanging out. (COVID is primarily spread through the air.) If you want to complain about fabric next to your skin, either invest in a KN95 mask or a singer’s/speaker’s mask. Also… AN OXYGEN MOLECULE IS 1,500 TIMES SMALLER THAN THE COVID DROPLET THAT YOU ARE CLAIMING YOUR CLOTH MASK IS KEEPING OUT, SO DON’T EVEN TELL ME THAT YOUR CLOTH MASK IS PREVENTING OXYGEN FROM GETTING IN!!!!

This PSA is brought to you by the Karen who was behind me in the pharmacy line at Haggen who was wearing a “Trump 2020” mask with her nose sticking out and speaking LOUDLY to the jerk next to her (who wasn’t wearing a mask before people were allowed to stop) about some conspiracy theories that made QAnon’s trash look intelligent. (Why yes, I did ask him why he wasn’t wearing a mask, and I have no regrets. An employee thanked me.)

— 4 —

Church in-person. My parish and the Spanish mission congregation attached to us had an outside service for Pentecost on Sunday. I’m bummed that I couldn’t go because I really miss being with people, but someone had to be home dealing with Zoom. The Holy Spirit made a cameo as a very enthusiastic woodpecker, there were missed parts in the service that had to be reinserted, and our virtual choir anthem couldn’t be heard over the speakers. We *WILL* be going back to in-person worship in the sanctuary on June 6th, but people will be required to mask up (because we’re not unconcerned with the safety of others), the wine will be reserved for our priest only, and the picnic afterward will be a “bring your own food and drink and camping chair to socially distance” affair. We’ll also be continuing to stream worship on Zoom until further notice because there will be people who choose to stay home for health reasons.

— 5 —

Funeral planning with the Kardashians. Caitlin Doughty of Ask a Mortician takes on the episode of the TV show about the Kardashians that deals with funeral planning. She is entertaining as usual.

— 6 —

Prayer request #1. I’ve got a kiddo who has the beginnings of a bowel blockage, and I’d really love it if you’d pray that it clears. Please and thank you.

— 7 —

Prayer request #2. Please pray that Daniel’s SSI mess gets resolved soon. Thanks!

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

6 Quick Takes: Pretend This Title Sounds Cool Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

COVID shot #1. Daniel got COVID shot #1 on Monday. It was actually a good experience and the staff at the Skagit Regional Health Vaccine Clinic were incredible. They distracted Daniel by letting him play with gloves, alcohol wipes, and band-aids while they were prepping the injection. They can’t physically restrain him, so they had me bear hug him while they quickly gave the shot. Afterward, they led us to a room where they let Daniel open and close the door as much as he wanted for the 15-minute wait. He was quieter the next day, but suffered no serious side effects.

— 2 —

41st birthday. My 41st birthday was Wednesday, and it was a really quiet day. I worked with students on my two favorite classes to tutor this quarter, and my dad made me dinner. It was a workday for me so it was absolutely OK that it wasn’t a huge family event.

— 3 —

Family gathering. All of the grown-ups in my household and twin brother’s household have been vaccinated (and Daniel has had shot #1), so I’m going to get to see my brother, his wife, and their son for the first time in 15 months for a communal birthday gathering. Getting to see everyone is worth all the staying home, quarantining, and masking-up since last March.

— 4 —

A boring life. Honestly, I have a pretty boring life these days because I’m either doing school with Daniel during the day or working with my students. On Wednesday when Daniel doesn’t have school, I work 5 hours straight in the middle of the day. I rarely leave the house except for groceries and medical care because I don’t have the time to even grab coffee. (Caffeine withdrawal is brutal, y’all! Thankfully, my Coca-Cola habit helps.)

— 5 —

Reading. I’ve finished all of the Margaret Maron books about Deborah Knott and I’m reading the prequel. I don’t recommend the prequel, but I recommend the rest of them highly. I’m trying to decide which book on my TBR pile/list to be read now.

— 6 —

NaNo prep. I’m trying to put together notes and a framework for a NaNoWriMo attempt in November, and I’m having an interesting time with what to name the county where my piece will take place. Washington has a lot of place named after things in the local indigenous language, and the name I want to use refers to the linguistic group. I’m making a serious attempt at this because I might want to publish it someday, so this is kind of a big deal.

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

7 Quick Takes: Bored at Work Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Fauci ouchie for Daniel. The FDA approving the Pfizer vaccine for 12-15 year olds means that Daniel can *FINALLY* get his. He is scheduled for Monday morning. Pray that it doesn’t take 5 people to restrain him for it. (He doesn’t like shots.) He has to have his TDaP a week later for school, so he will definitely not be a happy camper this month.

— 2 —

Ted Cruz and Chick-Fil-A. I saw a picture of this on Facebook and went to Ted Cruz’s Twitter to see if it was real. It is. This tweet’s stupidity is on par with the idiots that are filling garbage bags and Rubbermaid containers with gasoline to hoard it, though it’s slightly more intelligent than the woman who tried putting it in a laundry hamper with holes in the side.

I think the best comment on it that I saw was someone saying that Chick-Fil-A has more sauces in Cancun.

(I also continue to be proud of the fact that I have never once eaten at Chick-Fil-A.)

Fled Cruz and Chick-Fil-A

— 3 —

CDC Mask Guidelines. The CDC has said that vaccinated people don’t have to mask in most indoor situations, but I’m going to keep masking to protect myself and others from those who refused to get the vaccine (despite being eligible) and are using the recent announcement as an excuse not to wear a mask. (Newsflash: having COVID once doesn’t protect you from getting it again. This has been scientifically proven.) If I don’t protect myself and others from these selfish people, who will?

(Whether or not you get the vaccine is your decision. I just find it to be incredibly selfish to not mask up in public to protect other people if you choose not to be vaccinated.)

— 4 —

Holy troublemakers and unconventional saints. An ad for this book appeared on my Facebook, and it looks interesting. They are offering free copies, so I’ve asked for one and will let y’all know how it is.

I should probably mention that I doubt any of the people are canonized in the Catholic church, so this probably isn’t for all of my blog readers.

— 5 —

From one of my favorite autism-related Facebook pages… I saw this today on Facebook, and it resonated with me SO. FREAKING. MUCH.

I love Mama Fry.

— 6 —

Prayer request. I’m currently fighting with the Social Security Administration on Daniel’s behalf, and they’ve stopped returning my calls. Could y’all pray that me calling them *DAILY* gets a response? Please and thank you!

— 7 —

Special intention. I’d also love it if you’d please pray for a special intention. Thanks!

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

7 Quick Takes: May Update Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Camp NaNoWriMo. I made it to just under 25,000 words before I quit mid-month. I hadn’t done any really extensive planning, and it bit me in the rear as I had a few days where I was staring at my laptop and no words were coming. I’m going to try again in November and do some extensive planning beforehand.

— 2 —

Fauci ouchie #2. I got COVID vaccine #2 on April 20th. Not only did I have a sore arm, but I had a fibromyalgia flare, an IBS flare, a migraine, and chills in the two days after I received the vaccine. It wasn’t fun, but it beats being on a ventilator. The two week wait is now up, and I am free to go out and lick doorknobs… or something.

— 3 —

Josh Duggar. I’m kind of shocked that nobody saw the child pr0n charges coming. I mean, he molested his sisters, and he cheated on Anna. The only people I feel sorry for in all of this are Anna and the kids.

— 4 —

New quarter. My tutoring schedule was maxed out the day after the quarter started. Things have gotten shifted around, and I’ve still ended up with my schedule maxed out. I’m still enjoying all of it (except for the student who ghosted me) even though I’m super busy.

— 5 —

Daniel and school. His middle school brought everyone back to school in a hybrid model, and we opted out of doing it due to me not being fully vaccinated and Daniel being unable to be vaccinated at that time. His paraprofessional is primarily working with him now and things got shifted 20 minutes earlier, which works a bit better for us. We are hoping to get Daniel vaccinated this summer so that he can go back to in-person school this fall.

— 6 —

Reading. I finished all the Mary Daheim books about Emma Lord, and I am in the middle of Margaret Maron’s books about Deborah Knott, the North Carolina judge. Maron does such a good job with descriptive language that I feel like I’m in rural North Carolina and am shocked when I look up and I’m back in Washington.

— 7 —

My Mother’s Day plans. I have none other than church and a nap.

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

7 Quick Takes: Got My Fauci Ouchie Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

How all of this works. For those who don’t know, this is how the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines work:

— 2 —

Monday. I had made my vaccine appointment for Monday at my local grocery store pharmacy. Well, I got an email on Monday morning saying that my vaccine appointment was canceled. I called the pharmacy in case this was a computer glitch, and they told me that my appointment had indeed been canceled because the website overbooked them.

Grrrrr…

— 3 —

Plan B. The person at the pharmacy told me call back in a few hours to see if I could get another appointment with them, but I opted to go see what I could find on Vaccine Locator instead. The local vaccination clinic at the fairgrounds had spots, so I made an appointment with them for a drive-thru vaccine on Tuesday afternoon.

— 4 —

Wait… a DRIVE-THRU VACCINE CLINIC?!?!?!? Yep, you drive thru the building, they give you a shot in the shoulder next to the window, and then you drive to an area to do your 15-minute wait. The people giving the shot are *ACTUAL MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS* and they are completely prepared with Epi-pens in case someone has an anaphylactic reaction.

— 5 —

Tuesday afternoon. I drove down to the county fairgrounds for my appointment, and there were people directing traffic so that people went to the right line. When I got there, the volunteer checked to make sure I didn’t have a habit of fainting during injections (which would mean I would need to go somewhere else) and handed me a clipboard with paperwork to fill out. I was directed to other people and then ended up in a line of cars to wait for my turn to drive through the sheep barn at the fair. I filled out my paperwork, chatted with the volunteer assigning people to lines going through the sheep barn, and read the e-book on my phone while I waited.

When it was my turn, I drove into the line on the right and pulled up until I was told to stop. A very nice LPN was assigned to do the last bit of screening and give me the shot. She folded my left arm in front of me, told me to put my shoulder down, and put one hand on my shoulder to steady it while giving me the injection with her other hand. I felt the needle go in, but it wasn’t painful. She almost forgot to give me my card before I drove off, but I have the card stating when I got my vaccine (Moderna) and the lot number in case there were problems.

After the injection and they made sure I wasn’t going to react in the first minute or so, they directed me to drive to a series of lines similar to what you see while waiting for a ferry boat. Each line was a group of people who had just gotten the shot, and a volunteer came up to me and told me what to do if I felt myself starting to have a reaction (wave my arm outside the window if I could or honk my horn). I also heard another volunteer telling another group to call 911 if they started having a reaction at home instead of calling the vaccine clinic. (It’s similar to the message you hear on the phone line at your doctor’s office about hanging up and dialing 911 if you are having a medical emergency.) I sent my lovely vaccine selfie to a few people and put it up on Facebook before reading until they told me I could go home.

null

— 6 —

Side effects. Other than a sense of hope and renewed optimism, the side effects I had from the vaccine were a sore arm (normal for me after a shot) and a bad headache. I was talking to Daniel’s pediatrician on Wednesday when he had his ADHD appointment, and she told me to take the day off after my next shot in April because she ended up with a really bad migraine after hers. I work from home, so I’ll probably be OK as I can be in a dark room and work while lying down if needed. I also had some minor chills Tuesday night and then this morning.

— 7 —

What’s next? Once all of us in the family are vaccinated that can be vaccinated, we’re talking about having family gatherings outside in the backyard. It is probably not going to be happening by my birthday in May, but we are hoping that people might be able to get together for my nephew Braden’s birthday in June.

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

7 Quick Takes: Prayer Requests and Stuff Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Prayer request #1. Thomas, the 5 year old son of Katherine of Gloria in Excelsis Deo has a bowel stricture, and they’ll be doing bowel resection surgery tomorrow afternoon Eastern time. Please pray hard. This is the 13th surgery in FOUR MONTHS and doesn’t include things done through interventional radiology. (Don’t believe me? Details are here.)

— 2 —

Prayer request #2. I was working with one of my students on Tuesday when I learned that my friend Ellen’s sister Jenny had been killed in a car accident on Sunday. Ellen and I met through our blogs 19 years ago, and Jenny eventually started blogging as well. I remember when she got her Ph.D at Cornell, hearing about her job hunt for a professor position, and hearing about what she was doing with her students on her blog and on Facebook. (Her pastor wrote a beautiful piece about her here.) Please pray for her sisters Ellen and Karen, her parents Charles and Barbara, her colleagues and students at Hope College (where she was chair of the Physics Department), and all those who knew and loved her as they mourn her passing.

— 3 —

OMGOMGOMG!!!!! Kelly (our Quick Takes hostess with the mostest) has announced that her book will be released on October 8th!!!!! (It’s also the saint’s day of one of my favorite saints, St. Pelagia the Harlot. Her conversion story was mentioned in my Medieval Europe class 20 years ago and has stuck with me.) I must make sure I clear Mount TBR (a.k.a. my e-reader) so that I can be ready to read it the second it appears!

— 4 —

COVID vaccine update. Shortly after I published my Quick Takes, I got an email from Debby, one of my readers, telling me that I was ALREADY ELIGIBLE(!!!!!) because of Daniel and his health issues. Once I was done with the quarter (a.k.a. TODAY!!!!), I looked into it… and she was right! I went to this site to see if I could find somewhere local that had appointments next week, and I was able to get one for Monday afternoon at my local grocery store pharmacy!!! They’ve done my flu shot for the last three years now. They have always kept an eye on me for 15-20 minutes after to make sure I don’t have an anaphylactic reaction due to my weird egg allergy, so I trust them as much as I trust my local health system’s vaccine clinic. (One of their pharmacists is actually a Blessed is She member!)

My deepest thanks go to Debby for giving me step-by-step instructions for how to do all of this.

— 5 —

Really?!?!?!? Cpt. Jay Baker made a completely stupid comment about the Atlanta massage parlor shooter “having a bad day” and is thankfully being removed from the case over it. (He also may lose his job, which I’m hoping happens because that was an inexcusable gaffe, coupled with some racist posts on his Facebook page.) I also don’t believe for one second that the shootings were not racially-motivated. There are plenty of massage places in Atlanta, and not all of them are Asian-owned.

Please also know that I am judging the daylights out of you if you make asinine comments about how coronavirus is the “China flu” or the “kung flu”. Hate crimes against Asian-Americans have skyrocketed since last year because of hateful comments like those made by Donald Trump and his despicable followers, and there is no excuse for that behavior. NONE.

— 6 —

Getting all Samuel L. Jackson up in here. One of my current relaxation things is the web game Taonga: the Island Farm, and it’s kind of like Farmtown or Farmville from the 2010’s. One big difference is that you have quests you can go on, and one of mine has me searching for items and battling these possessed plants called “malignant sundews” which are guarding the items I need to get. After battling 2 (!!!) of them while trying to get to an item, I started having thoughts about being “tired of these mofo sundews in this mofo game!”

— 7 —

Biden’s COVID vaccine goal. He is meeting his goal of 100 million people vaccinated 42 days ahead of schedule despite the previous administration leaving him no vaccine rollout plan. Everyone making stupid comments about “Sleepy Joe” can shut their stupid mouths because he is actually *DOING* something about the pandemic instead of ignoring it, ignoring scientists, and throwing press conferences to prop up his ego like Trump did.

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