Saturday, May 08, 2004

New Look

Apparently Blogger is going to upgrade this weekend. Getting new features and a new look. I'll be looking forward to that. I don't know if the new look will apply to the individual new sites or just to the Blogger main page. New features? hmmmm...could be interesting.

I have some things that I think are cool that I'd like to add to this page, but can't for one reason or another. And, for that reason, among others, was considering moving to another site. I'll hang on here for a while and see what Blogger is offering as incentive.


I haven't mentioned Curves lately. Actually, there hasn't been much to talk about. Tina and I are going at least twice a week and, most weeks now, three times. Three times is the recommended number. I like it. I'm still not loosing weight, but my inches are showing results. Last month not so much, but still losing. I'm told, by others as well as the Curves instructors, that losing inches, but not weight, means I'm building muscle and losing fat. At some point, I should start dropping pounds.

Yes, I know you have to diet as well as exercise and my diet is improving. I also know that I have a thyroid issue (it's been diagnosed but I'm not on medication yet), and I think I have an adrenal exhaustion problem. I've been taking recommended supplements for that and I think I see some improvement. So either my adrenals are getting back on track or the supplements are helping something else. In any case, I'm not as exhausted as I was. I can actually think about doing some of the things I used to just ignore. Okay, I'm still procrastinating at doing them, but now I actually think that I can do it. Trust me, this is an improvement.


I was talking to a friend of mine, oh, a year or so ago about my procrastination. Ruth told me that she attended a workshop where this was addressed (she's in the mental health field) and found that there are at least two types of perfectionists: one type sees something that needs to be done and does it. The other type sees something that needs to be done, and since they can't do it the way they want to do it, put it aside until it can be done their way. I apparently am in the second group. If I can't do it the way I want to do it, I'll put it aside until I can. True or not, I feel better about myself and understand why I do as I do.

Now, if my boss tells me to do something and it's not the way I want to do it, it gets done his way. I might not like it, but he's the boss. If it's not on a time frame, or for other reasons, I might make the suggestion to do it this (my) way and give reasons. Many times, I get my way. Sometimes, I don't. Again, he's the boss. I've got a good boss though and even if I don't get my way, life is good.

Speaking of my boss, he's not above trying to stir things up. Last week, Tina and I were on a break. As he was leaving to see his boss, he mentioned that things we were saying (negative things) were getting back to the CJ and they were being talked about. Now, first, our break area is situated so that not just anybody passing hears what we're saying. Second, when we're dissing anyone, it's usually the men in our lives - whether husbands, co-workers or men in general. Third, anyone actually hearing what we're saying usually have no business telling our business, they really need to watch their own. Fourth, we seldom talk about our jobs on break. Tina finally finds out that he was playing us. There was nothing being said (we thought as much). He was just trying to stir the puddin'. It gave us something to talk about - trying to figure out what had been said that could be construed as negative.

Speaking of Work

We're finally coming into the 21st century. We now have voice mail - if we can figure out how to set it up. And I finally got email at work! My job requires that I have email so that I can email the Inspector General's office about certain things. Not that I have had to do so as yet, it hasn't come up. Tina already has email and was doing the emailing when it was required, but job duties change and it's now my responsibility. I also am required to do background checks on employees and needed a specific software program to do it. I finally got that last week. With the email, I'll be able to contact JPO's and maybe actually get a response! Woo-hoo!

Our agency is also upgrading our computers. We're at the end of the list (of course!), but should be changed out in the next few weeks. We're connected to the county mainframe, so hard drive space is not a consideration for us. But, speed is. We're still running some Pentium 1 and 2's here. I'm not sure what I've got, but it's slow. I've had the same CPU since '97 so you can see how obsolete it is compared to what is out there and specifically to what I have at home! I have a HP 5Plus laser jet printer that is getting cranky about printing envelopes. The last one I had got so it wouldn't print envelopes at all and I was instructed to switch it out with another HP5P. Apparently I have one of the last HP5P's in the agency. Last week I sent a requisition to Computer Services to replace the toner cartridge. When Gary came out the other day, it was for something else. I asked about my printer and he went ahead and changed the cartridge. I had only run 7000 copies since the last change. Gary told me he keeps a cartridge on the truck for me. Luckily he does since he never got the requisition. Maybe I'll have to have a new printer in the near future. Just damn!

I see advantages to being on the mainframe and disadvantages. The advantage, of course is that I have plenty of storage capability. I don't archive anymore. I don't see the need. And, if my computer goes on the fritz, I don't lose my work or storage as can happen if you don't store off-line. The disadvantage is if the mainframe goes down. I don't foresee that being too much of an issue since they backup every night and do a full back up on the weekend. The most I would lose is one day. It would be a pain, but I could live with that (and have). The main disadvantage is the router hub we're on. All too frequently it goes out and our computers are dead in the water. Sure, we can use them as standalones, but I can't access anything stored on the mainframe. And, as I said, that's everything! My work updates so frequently that it isn't feasible to store anything on the local drive.

I have heard that the telephone system is working off two 8088 computers. This would make them approximately 20 some years old. I rather doubt that it's true (it might have been when I was told that however), I would guess that it's been updated sometime in recent memory. But, since they are updating the computer system, maybe the telephone system has or will be updated. Speaking of telephones. We are in dire need of replacing some of the phones in our facility. We're told all it takes is a requisition. It's getting the big guy to tell me to fill it out! I can't do it without his approval and he hasn't given it to me. He can also do it himself, by the way, but that's what a secretary is for, isn't it??? One of the nurses was trying to make a call and got 911 the other day! Now that's scary! What would she get if she tried to dial 911?

I was told we'll be getting new CPU's, monitors, and keyboards. Tina just got a new monitor. Her old one would pulsate every so often and then started turning itself off. It finally just died. I noticed mine pulsating Friday so it will be a race to see if I get a new system before my monitor dies.

And they're off!


We now have 13 dogs in the program. Four, I think are visitors. Three are here for finishing and relaxing until they go to the blind school for their real training - we're just doing basic obedience training. The fourth is here for "boot camp." The puppy program director at SEGI called and asked if we could take a dog assigned to a private handler (private as opposed to our program) who is not behaving very well. The raiser is very experienced; this isn't the first dog she's raised for SEGI. Bobbie Jo was chewing her house up. When the raiser would tell her "no!", Bobbie Jo would just look at her, grin, and continue on chewing whatever she was destroying. We were supposed to have her for two weeks, but it looks like we'll have her for an additional two weeks while the raiser goes on vacation. The raiser assigned to Bobbie Jo got her under control within the first 24 hours. She's still a playful puppy, but listens now. Apparently, the outside raiser is too soft for this particular dog. It happens. Tina moves dogs around in our facility all the time because a youth isn't an appropriate raiser for a particular dog. Actually, now the youths move, the dogs are assigned to specific rooms and stay there.

When we started the program, one of the directors decided to build kennels for the dogs. He decided that we could handle 12 dogs and built a structure that would accommodate two dogs in each kennel. However, last summer was rainy, so the cement he used didn't cure properly and is now crumbling. Areas in the roof and inside the concrete block walls that should have been blocked off now have spiders and wasps in them. Needless to say, the dogs don't kennel outside. And why should they? When they become guide dogs they won't be staying outside in kennels, they'll be in the house with their person. So it was a wasted activity except some of the kids helped build the kennel and got some building experience. Too bad they didn't have a better instructor.

This same director, the one who decided we could have 12 dogs actually tried to take over the program. He tried to take credit for starting it even though it was in the works before he was even assigned to our program. I wonder if he still wants credit for the kennel? I won't go into details, but I understand that he's had enough of his own problems since he was re-assigned.

How Much Is That Doggy in the Window?

I'm still trying to get my husband used to the idea that I want a chihuahua. Don't ask why, I just like chi's. I have chi wallpaper on my computer, a chi charm on a chain around my neck, "Chihuahua's for Dummies", on the bookshelf, and Tiny, the Beanie baby chihuahua in my office and car. Don't tell my husband, but there's one more Tiny coming for my home office. And maybe I'll get one to carry around in my purse.

He knows better than to say I can't have one. I've told him if he does, I'll have one by the weekend. In return he says he and the cats will have Mexican that night. So it's a standoff.

One reason I don't have a dog (of any breed) now is because we have two cats now. Not that they would stop me if I wanted a dog. The main reason I won't have a dog in the house right now is because my husband is unsteady on his feet because of the circulation difficulties and the amputations (he's lost three toes due to diabetes and poor circulation). As unsteady as he is, I don't want him to fall trying to avoid stepping on or tripping over a small dog. And he would fall rather than hurt an animal. He would be devastated if he ever hurt an animal, even accidentally. So, until he's steadier, or in a wheelchair, I don't want a dog. The cats are enough of a problem. The other reason we don't have a dog is because we live in a very small condo. We would have to have a small dog. I like big dogs for protection, but I don't see that as an issue right now - our area is very safe. But a large dog is not appropriate for the size of the condo or the lack of a yard. A small dog is better suited to our location. But a dog of any size is out of the question. I have to be satisfied with visiting with our SEGI dogs and visiting with my brother's two Schnauzers, Jock and Casey.

I am patient. I WILL have a dog! So it is written, so it shall be done.

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