3 July, 2024

Settled

Category: Body,Exercise,Health,Knitting,Work — Moose @ 9:48 pm

We did, in fact, settle on “silent migraines” as the cause of the incidents I had from early December of last year through mid-February of this year. None of the blinding pain, but some of the side effects that mimicked stroke symptoms (dizziness, numbness). The two ocular migraines clinched it, since there was no damage present on any of the imaging we did of my brain. Bodies are such fun.

Did not make it through to interviews for the Deputy slot this go round, and after they failed the search for other reasons I chose not to re-apply when they re-issued the announcement. I think they’re at the interview stage, but I’m also not participating in that process (staff frequently helps out with resume review and/or interviewing candidates, and other attorneys are doing so). At this point I’m going to hunker down in my nice little mostly apolitical agency and see what November-January brings. Depending on which way that goes I may decide to look elsewhere or I may just settle down and decide that they pay me well enough and I can focus on other things rather than worry about supervising again.

The knee is better, but still not to running stability. I’m slowly increasing walking speed, but it still has stability issues at times when I turn corners or the like. I’ve used a set of ropeless jump ropes a few times to test the boundaries of how much I can bounce on my feet. That, in conjunction with biking and walking, is my exercise these days.

Took a knitting class on basic two-color brioche knitting and finished a hat this past week, in record time for me (a week!). Pictures over on Flickr, as well as some of the long fingering weight single-color (at-a-time) brioche scarf I’ve been working on since (checks Ravelry) February of last year. I’m on the last color block of four for the scarf, so almost done. I have another scarf on the needles for Metro knitting, and a hat and a blanket in the immediate next queue. I took a crochet class back in March to get some hands-on help and learn some of the basic steps there, but I haven’t done anything past the first project yet. Will probably try and whip out some dishcloths first.

6 February, 2024

Maybe

Category: Aging,Annoyances,Exercise,Health,Stuff,Work — Moose @ 8:33 am

Still haven’t figured out what to do with some of the stuff I cleared out of the trunks. Do I really need my merit badge sash? No. My Eagle Scout medal? Yes. But what to do with the stuff I’m keeping? Display it? Stick it in storage for another thirty years? I may set the husband loose on display options, that’s more up his alley than mine.

I did decide to apply for my boss’ job as Deputy GC. That application went in last Friday, and the announcement closed yesterday. It’s funny, since talking with her about it she’s definitely pulled back the curtain more on the workings of the office and the agency, especially our current hiring needs & process.

In health news, I’ve had a couple appointments, a couple events, and a new diagnosis of sorts. Saw neurology at another facility for an intake for an EEG later this month. Was not best pleased about how they handled the process (they literally just snail mailed me an appointment card with a time & date and no further information about what the appointment was for. Dorks), but the doctors were fine. Took the 30-day monitor off early (by about 6 days) because it had irritated my skin too much where the contacts were. But the neuro indicated that she had not gotten any alerts from it, so it’s fairly safe to assume there was no sign of atrial fibrillation; we’ll see for sure once they get the equipment back and send her the final report. The second neurology office apparently made noises to her about an implantable three year monitor and we nixed that. No thank you.

Had two eye incidents on the 25th and the 2nd, where I got what appeared to be an after-image in my right field of vision that gradually expanded in a crescent out and to the right until it faded completely, all in about twenty minutes. Annoyed me the first time, freaked me out the second time. Saw an ophthalmologist yesterday to check that out, and he pretty quickly diagnosed it as an ocular migraine, but examined my eyes and found no other issues with the retinas, etc. And he said that while he was no neurologist, in his experience if I’m getting ocular migraines the other TIA-like symptoms (numbness, dizziness) might just be signs of migraines rather than strokes. I’m still going through the rest of the testing to rule stuff out, but I’d certainly prefer that these were migraines over strokes. I’d actually prefer to have none of it, but if I’m stuck with one I know which I’d choose.

The knee has done better the past two weeks. I pushed the orthopedist to be more aggressive at our last appointment and he gave me a cortisone shot to ramp down the inflammation. I’ve been able to walk more easily, did a mile on the treadmill on Sunday (slowly), and have been able to bike again. Which is good because the knee brace was starting to irritate the skin on my leg.

11 January, 2024

Personnel changes

Category: Work — Moose @ 11:10 pm

We’ve been going through a bunch of personnel changes the past year at work. New General Counsel, permission to hire five new attorneys (up from 13 to 18), three of whom are on board and the last two have a start dates now. But we’re also losing four attorneys, one to retirement, and three to other agencies, including our Deputy GC. Which readers may recall was the position I applied and interviewed for back in 2021 when it last opened up. And while at the time I considered that a bullet dodged (I honestly don’t think I was ready for that), this time I’m going to do some more talking with the current incumbent about the job, and the previous GC about how the interview process went. The ad is out on the street and is open for three weeks, so I have some time to make a decision. Thankfully it’s the same requirements as last time, so with some minor polishing and updating I should be good to go for answering the questions. As of right this instant I’m on the fence. Frankly I like my current job at the small gubm’nt agency and I could be comfortable in it for the next decade or so. But do I want to just ride that out or do I want to do more? I dunno. I look forward to talking about it with the husband, after he’s done with this weekend’s festivities.

30 December, 2023

Cleaning up

Category: Annoyances,Body,Books,Comics,Home,Stuff,Theatre,Work — Moose @ 3:36 pm

Spent the early afternoon culling books from my office. Mostly old triathlon books that I am not going to use again, and who could find a better life elsewhere. Rearranged some of the remaining books, and left some space for more which are sure to come. This shelf serves as my Zoom background when working from home, and always gets compliments, so I like to shake it up from time to time. Plus I really do need more space to fit some of the stuff (books and legos) I got for the holidays.

The husband is up in NYC for a day trip, seeing musical performances numbers 99 and 100 (he’s currently in number 99) for him for this year. He realized he was really close to 100 about a month ago and I urged him to go ahead and aim to hit it before year’s end just for the bragging rights of his “year of theater”. And it gave me a good space to clean without him getting bored and wanting me to drag him out of the house to go do something. 😉

This upcoming year is going to be a challenge. There’s the knee, and the ongoing medication adjustments from the TIA (BP was almost in the normal range this morning, which was nice to see). There were some shenanigans with pay for our top ranks at work, including me, because our former GC was a bit fast and loose with his legal work, so I will take a slight haircut on base pay for the year. Not paralyzing, but definitely annoying. And whatever else life tosses my way. Nothing unsurmountable (so far), just mostly annoying. Though I would like the knee to get back to normal sooner rather than later, since moving is important to me and I would like to do it like a normal person again, and not a semi-invalid.

Likely going to go catch up on some comics this afternoon, and maybe hit a long-delayed cross-stitch pattern that I had lost the bits for on the shelf, but which have now been found.

9 October, 2023

Rolling along

Saw my sister-in-law and niece off this morning, after they popped down for the holiday weekend.

Made some homemade pumpkin spice coffee additive last night (1.5 cups sugar, 1.5 cups water, bring to boil over medium heat, whisk in 4 teaspoons pumpkin spice blend and 1/4 cup pumpkin puree, lower heat to simmer for 20 more minutes. Strain through a fine mesh sieve (and cheesecloth, if you have it, to further reduce the solids) and add 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract. Stores in the fridge for up to a week). Also made toddy coffee concentrate, so had homemade iced pumpkin spice lattes this morning (1/2 cup concentrate, 3/4 cup milk, 2 Tablespoons PSL mix). Was tasty. I’m normally a black coffee drinker, so anything beyond that is exotic for me, but this was a nice treat. And the SIL was impressed, which is what really counts.

PT this afternoon. I have some pitting edema going on, meaning there’s still a lot of extra fluid in the knee, so if that’s still there at the end of next week I get to ask the orthopedist about that. Flexion was about the same as last week, which may be related to the extra fluid at this point.

Short week last week (and weird because of the almost-government-shut-down), short week this week. My new attorney shadow gets here in two weeks; it’s someone I recruited from my old agency, so I know I’ll work well with him. Looking forward to training him on the new agency, and a new area of law, as well as passing off some of the stuff that I’m not as well versed in but that he has much more experience with.

Oooh, we played Uno Flip last night and really enjoyed it. The husband and I own it, but hadn’t played it, and it was quite a fun variation on the regular uno. Both sides of the cards are playable, a light side and a dark side, and every now and again people can make the deck flip from one to the other, which also flips all the cards in your hand. Kept things lively.

Got some more of the Halloween stuff put up, including the green-purple-orange light strings we bought last year but didn’t get up (maybe we bought them at the end of the season on sale? I don’t remember why they didn’t get put up). Our neighbor does a much better job with it than we do, but we outshine them at Xmas. 😉

24 August, 2023

Maintenance

Category: Adult,Cats,Commuting,Exercise,Running,Transit,Work — Moose @ 6:06 am

Spent a chunk of yesterday finally getting all four tires replaced on the Mini. The local place was a lot friendlier than BJ’s, and apparently NTB is now Mavis, though the signage (and online) hasn’t caught up yet. Popped by the local carwash on the way back from picking up the car, so the beast looks (and drives) much nicer now.

Continuing to slowly build my running back up on the treadmill.

Up far too early this morning after Benjamin (male cat) decided to puke, twice, in the hallway outside our bedroom. Found it without stepping in it (yay?) and got it all cleaned up. Very grateful that I thought to stash some paper towels under the sink in the bathroom off that hallway so I didn’t have to go downstairs for some.

A good chunk of my office flooded last week. There’s a ledge outside the windows of about 2/3 of the offices (including mine) where water got backed up and came in though the walls. Nothing personal of anyone’s was damaged, and very few official documents were dampened since most of that is electronic now so there was only like one box on the floor in the suite (unlike a flood in my old office that was a nightmare of drying out old paper). While facilities swung into action while the flood was still ongoing thanks to one of our employees alerting them, it apparently still smells according to the few people who’ve braved the place, and they’re going to have to do all sorts of remediation. So who knows if I’ll be going back in immediately after labor day or not? That’s tentatively the plan since the local Metro stations reopen after that weekend, but not if they’re still dealing with walls and carpet and what not.

20 June, 2023

Playing catch up

Category: Adult,Decorating,Home,Stuff,Work — Moose @ 4:22 pm

Today was a catch up day for work, especially catching up to a couple of thorny things where I needed time to sit down and actually be able to read up on 1) what the problem was; and 2) potential solutions. The craziness of email and meetings do not lend themselves to lengthy consideration, so was nice to have time to actually sit and ruminate on a couple problems, as well as coming up with the solutions.

We installed some new accent lights on the Ikea bookshelves in our respective offices, and now I feel the need to reorganize said bookshelves, at least the ones in my office, to make them a bit less cluttered. Since that’s my usual video conferencing background I like to have it clean but fun (books, legos, pop vinyls, and other toys abound). I always get nice comments on how much fun it is to see all of the toys, but I think it needs a bit of curating at the moment. And more storage space for some of it.

3 June, 2023

Much better

Category: Books,Exercise,Reading,Running,Stuff,Television,Work — Moose @ 10:26 am

The vacation was what we needed. Downtime, lots of reading (finished two books, though not the Grant biography I’ve been “reading” for three years now; I’m up to his run for President). The weather looked like it was going to be rainy the whole time, so a lot of people bailed on the town, but then we had a glorious, sunny Memorial day, so the husband and I got a beautiful day with not as many other tourists in the way.

One of the books was Born to Run 2, the sequel to 2009’s Born to Run, about barefoot running and other crazy people. The sequel bills itself as a training guide. There were a lot of stories mixed in with the training bits, which makes it a little difficult to use, but what is in there is helpful (100 ups!). So when we got back I pulled out my running shoes and got started again, albeit very slowly and very short distances (I did a mile this morning of 2 on/2 off).

Work wasn’t too bad. I’m still catching up on emails, which will probably take me another week or so as I respond to more urgent things that keep popping up. Still learning the new GC’s style, but am actively working with the Deputy GC to manage upwards there (and, frankly, to help the Deputy look good for the new GC).

One of my nieces asked about the new Diablo IV that’s out officially in 3 more days, but which is offering early play for preorders. She and I used to play Diablo III online, so I’m sure she’s looking forward to the new one as well. I know I’m going to dive in eventually, but I’m also in the midst of loving Tears of the Kingdom on the Switch. I’ll probably switch the Xbox One in my office for the PS5 in the living room, since the niece is on a PS5, and that way I can let the husband use the new, enormous TV he bought just before we left town (so far it’s mostly been used for my gaming, and while Link looks great on 85″, it’s kind of a waste of the TV).

The big surprise for the husband for the anniversary was that I got us a fancy washlet for the owners’ suite bathroom. I think I may have created a monster, but frankly, it’s been worth it. So much better than just wiping. I fear we’re going to get spoiled, which is okay, but will make leaving the house that much less attractive.

23 May, 2023

Too long

Category: Commuting,Cooking,Family,Games,Health,Motivation,Reading,Work — Moose @ 11:25 pm

The out-of-office message is set, and the work laptop is powered down. Out for a little over a week as of this evening, for our annual anniversary trip to the Virginia part of the Eastern Shore.

Other than some family medical messes, and a tinge of slightly-higher-than-we’d-like-to-see blood pressure for me, things have been going fairly well. Playing the heck out of Tears of the Kingdom now, to the point where I took a break from it early this evening to rest my poor hands. I’m going into the office once a week now that Metro’s yellow line bridge is back open. Or at least I am until late July when they’re closing the stations near me for 45 days. I’ve vacillated back and forth on how much to go in, and for now I’m doing the minimum required (2 days in each two week pay period).

Still working on the biscuit recipe from January, though I’ve not posted any new notes yet. It’s getting closer, but still needs tweaks.

I’m determined to finally finish the Grant biography this trip. I started it two years ago on the anniversary trip, plowed through the first half in short order, then just couldn’t get back into a rhythm (it didn’t help that I hit Reconstruction, which I find difficult to read about, given how awful this country treated her newly freed citizens). But I’m going to get it done this year.

29 December, 2022

Cleaning up

Category: Baking,Books,Cooking,Food,Home,Knitting,Stuff,Work — Moose @ 1:11 pm

I’m supposed to be working, but mostly I’m cleaning out my home office. I have taken care of a few things, so your (US) tax dollars aren’t a complete waste today, but I really felt the need to change up my home office space, get rid of trash and generally declutter it. And hey, I’ve already found an old gift card that still has a balance on it, so go me.

Xmas was a low-key affair, just the two of us. He made a delightful ‘bold and spicy gingerbread cake’, a bundt cake that used three different forms of ginger (dried ground ginger, fresh ground ginger, and ginger ale in the glaze). It turned out really well, and it’s been a nice breakfast most mornings since. I made melting potatoes (potato rounds cooked at high temperatures, and flipped twice to get them browned on both sides), and some other odds and ends. We both made out like bandits from each other, and had some interesting choices from our families (bags of rubber duckies, anyone?).

Most of the gifts have now been moved away from the tree and to their current homes in the house, which is also part of what’s instigating the home office cleaning. Books needed to be rearranged to make room for more.

I finished 99% of the endless scarf I’ve been knitting for the husband. Just need to weave in the ends and block the sucker. I’m not normally one to do a lot of blocking, but this one needs it – it has a tendency to roll inward toward the wrong side, and I’d like it to be able to sit flat when he wears it. So given the length I’ll be laying it out on the kitchen island once our house cleaner is done tomorrow. Next up is trying some brioche, specifically this pattern, once I get in some practice with the method, using the yarn I just finished playing with for the endless scarf.