Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.28

Well, it’s the last day of February today, the first day of Autumn tomorrow, and nine days until a certain Birthday. I’m glad that Summer went out with such a “bang”! We had a really spectacular storm burst here, complete with lightning, thunder, wind, and pouring rain 🙂 At one stage the rain was coming in horizontally against our lounge room windows – that was fun, and a little nerve wracking… when the wind and rain do that I’m always afeared that it’ll break the windows, or the balcony doors (like what happened to the apartment above us once!) Sadly, it all appears to have passed over now, and all is (relatively) calm. The weather report said that it got up to 32C in Melbourne today, but we were out in it all, and I didn’t think it was all that hot – it must have just been all the excitement of (finally) buying the entertainment unit, the two side tables, and the sofa bed! (does little dance of joy – mentally only! I’d still probably go through the concrete floor if I did that physically 😉 )They get delivered on Thursday – so the next thing to do is get the scatter cushions (hello, Target! 😉 ) and a floor rug… hmm… I wonder if we could put the rug from the lounge room into the spare room – we’d have to measure, but I don’t think it would be too big – and get a new rug for the lounge room? Julian? The lounge room rug is about eight years old, and a lot “cat-worn” – and if we’re going to change the lounge room curtains, maybe the rug should get a makeover too? Yes? No? Indifferent?

Well, as I said, we were out most of this morning and early afternoon. Julian needed a new script, and I wanted to get mine re-done. The last time we went to the Doctors was to get new scripts too, however we didn’t see our usual Doctor, Dr. B. – she was still on leave – we saw a different Doctor. She was very nice, and (having done her homework, so to speak) she’d noticed that nearly all of my prescriptions would be coming up for renewal soon, so she gave me the lot, in one foul swoop. Unfortunately she made the mistake of putting all the prescriptions on the one form (which I think I may have mentioned in my blog at the time) I thought that a Chemist should be able to cope with something like that, but, naturally, they couldn’t. Now, I’m a particularly fussy and finicky patient, I keep all of our prescriptions filed, alphabetically, in a card index system, so that when we need to get something, the prescriptions we want are right at my fingertips, quickly and easily found. When half a dozen different prescriptions are all bunged into the one (stupid flimsy little) Chemist’s folder (I’m thinking of making my own, actually!) it’s hard (for me) to remember which prescription is where. It’s not really a big deal, but it annoys the you-know-what out of me! So this morning, after having my blood pressure taken (which, I might add, was very good!) I presented Dr. B. with the single Chemist’s folder with the great wad of prescriptions stapled inside it, and asked her, very nicely, if she could re-do them all for me – on single forms, please.  She was kind enough to do so, so now I’m all happy again, and I can file my prescriptions in their proper places 🙂 Isn’t it sad how the older we get, the more strictly we want (or should that be “need“?) to stick to our little routines and rituals! (Ha! Just wait until I’m 90! No-one will be able to lift a finger in the wrong order! No-siree! Everything “by the book“, in my book! 😉 ) Then we went on to the furniture shop next to Howards Storage Shed and ordered the furniture, then into Howards to get another one of those sliding basket drawer thingies that has worked out so well, and then home. And as I said earlier, it didn’t really feel all that hot – it was a bit humid, though.

Back home again, and back to Rifting. I finally managed to get all the stuff that the new and improved Hialeah had “inherited” from her predecessor on the Auction House (let’s just hope it sells, this time around!) and I even took Persha for a spin and got her up another couple of levels. Then it was almost time for “walkies”, so I went and read until then. This evening we watched the new show that started tonight on ABC1, called “Grantchester” – a sort of a “Father Brown” look-alike (well, not really – Father Brown was a Roman Catholic priest – this guy, Sidney Chambers, is a Vicar – but they both ride bikes everywhere, so it’s similar in that respect…) The show looks promising – so we’ll probably watch it again next Saturday.

Weigh-in this morning. I was what the scales teased me with yesterday – 101.8kg Good! But I start those wretched pills tomorrow. Bad! Oh well, maybe I will have to add, either another floor to my Stair Walks, or, do a third Stair Walk every day, before or after lunch. I think I’d rather add another floor – making 48 stairs down, and 48 stairs up – a total of 96 stairs… (Winter visualizes plodding up an extra set of stairs…) On second thoughts, an extra Stair Walk before lunch sounds good… We’ll see… depends on how much fluid my body decides to hoard…

Anyway, tune in again tomorrow night – tomorrow is our “Traipsing in Telara” day, so there’ll be all the news from that, plus it’s about time for me to change over my nail polish again – I think I’ll use the gold one (with the silver shimmer!) next – see how that one looks. I quite like this dark blue one – it does grow on you after a day or so – but I still get a startle when I look down and see such a very dark colour (almost black, actually…) on my nails! After that it’ll be the ripe raspberry, and then I think I’ll circle back to the Inglot “breathable” red – the one that matched my hair so nicely 😉 I’m not sure that we’ll get the second cupboard sliding basket installed tomorrow because we’ll be too busy in Telara – Monday is hair day, and my favourite eldest daughter is coming over as well – her last visit before she goes back to uni – I think! So the sliding basketie thing will probably have to wait until Tuesday (but I’ve got a feeling we had something planned for Tuesday – I  can’t remember…) Anyway, there’ll be plenty of news and gossip waiting for you this time tomorrow night, so until then, bee good, don’t do anything silly… and stay safe! ciao, all! 🙂

Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.27

As I suspected, another day filled with “busy”! 🙂 I Rifted this morning, for once, and what was I doing? Re-writing a new/old character… I may have mentioned that my class of choice these days is the Mage – almost all of my girls are Mages, with a teeny smattering of Hunter/Marksman Rogues here and there. Well, I’ve been mostly working on getting (the shard) Hailol set up as my new main sphere of operations – leveling each character in turn up to level 20, and so on… (and much to the surprise of everyone who knows me, two of them are male – and I intend to keep them!) There was only one little thing that unsettled me – my Auctionator and Guild Bank Overflow Mistress was a (*gasp! *shock! *horror!) Hunter/Marksman Rogue. She was level 8, and I knew that there was no way I’d ever get her past that (because I simply didn’t want to put the time in on a character that was never really going to go anywhere) So, I created another character, a Mage, on another shard, and gave her the same name as the Hunter/Marksman on Hailol, and got her up to level 15. I then did the rounds, collecting anything that would be of any use on Hailol, and loaded her up with big (read: expensive!) bags – because at level 15 I could only take 45 platinum with me. Then I went back to Hailol, collected everything that Hialeah had both in her bank and on her, sold off anything I couldn’t transfer to the new character, and shunted the rest off to a third character to “hold” for the new, incoming Hialeah. Then, with a quiet tear, I deleted her, and her full set of Transcendent Trove of Boosts (believe me, that really hurt! 😦 ) Then I transferred the new and improved  Hialeah to Hailol, and gave her all of her predecessor’s old belongings and goods (except for the Transcendent Trove of Boosts, unfortunately – all I can do is hope that in about a year’s time, Trion will decide to give us Patrons another present of a Transcendent Trove of Boosts in our mail boxes!) It took quite a while to sort everything out, set up a new Guild Bank Overflow account, and put the rest of the things I’d brought with me either into the new account, or on the Auction House, but by lunchtime it was finally all done!

After lunch I bathroomed. That is, I emptied out the cupboard under one of my sinks, sorted the mill from the floss, tossed out the junk, left the rest on the bathroom bench for later deployment, stepped back, and let Julian go to work. Yesterday while we were at Howards Storage, I got one of those tray basket-thingies that slide out on rails so that you can see and access what’s at the back. The bottom of the sliding rails screws onto  the top of the shelf, and it’s a really marvelous invention – we must get another one for the other cupboard… Anyway, that didn’t take very long, and I was soon back at work putting everything away again. I had a lot less of everything looking a lot neater and tidier than it ever had, in about half an hour. Or so. Maybe three quarters of an hour… Then I emptied out my “makeup” drawer, and sifted through that – most of it went, and what I kept I’ll probably only use once in a blue moon, if that! But for some quirky reason, I like it, so I kept it. I don’t wear makeup much any more – I find it tends to get caked in the creases – but I still wear eye shadow – and although very rarely, I’ve even been known to wear lipstick every now and then. A far cry from the good old days when I was a master makeup artist – thanks largely to the fact that my favourite cousin was top fashion photographer, Bruno Benini, and me spending a lot of time in his studio, watching, and talking to the models. Once I had all that done, I called on my in-house Master Technician (AKA Julian) to put some drawer dividers in for me – not as easy as it sounds! They too were from Howards, and were “spring loaded” – actually, they work very well, but they’re damn hard to move once they’ve been put in place! So then it was back to re-organising – what did I want to put where? Did I want the eyeshadow at the front, or the face wipes? Where could I put the eyeshadow brushes? they really needed to stand up… hmm… find an empty perfume box, cut the flaps off the top, and viola, as the French say, a stand up eyeshadow brush box! Tick-tock, tick-tock – that drawer took me longer than the cupboard did! By the time I’d finished the drawer, I had an hour and a half before my afternoon Stair Walk, so I went into the lounge room, put my feet up, and read until it was time for “walkies”. Oh, we measured (alright, he measured, I watched!) the television wall to see if the entertainment unit we saw yesterday would fit. It will! YAYY! Now all I have to do is badger him into getting it  talk him into it  yell at him until he gives in (*tsk!* what are the words I’m groping for?!) see if he thinks it would look really great there, too! 😉 The side tables would also look good in the lounge room, and we could use the old ones in the spare room at each end of the sofa bed! (crosses fingers and tries to look innocent…)

Weigh-in this morning. Once more, my scales showed just how horrid and mean they really are – this time, Julian was watching, and he saw how they deliberately teased me and thumbed their nose at me! I got on the scales… they went down to 101.9kg. Paused. Wavered briefly down to 101.8kg, then bounced back to…. 102.0kg! One point less than yesterday! Now, was that mean, or was that mean?! I thought it was mean! Julian thought it was mean, too! We’re onto you, scales! Do that again, and we’ll both get on you at the same time! So it seems I’m getting the “go slow” treatment – and the day after tomorrow I start those wretched pills again! I’m not happy! 😦

Still, drop by again tomorrow night and find out all the latest! We have to go out in the morning, we both need to get new scripts, and if possible, on the way home, I’d like to drop by Howards and get another one of those sliding-drawer thingies, for the other cupboard in the bathroom. My little fountain in the bedroom has died (it’s lasted over 12 years!) and I’d like to see if I can replace it – trouble is, I’m not sure who sells them any more – I think “Bunnies” has them, somewhere near their garden section, from memory, and I know I’ve seen them at some candle shops (but which ones? That is the question!)… So there’ll be plenty more news for you tomorrow night, never fear! 😉 In the meantime, bee good, don’t do anything naughty, and stay safe! ciao, all! 🙂

Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.26

Another day full of “busy” 🙂 I didn’t get a chance to do more than check my Auctions (all expired! 😦 ) collect the offerings from my Minions, and try out a new name on (yet another) new character on Rift. Oh, don’t worry, she won’t be permanent – I just wanted to see if I could get the name – which I did, surprisingly! I was looking at Bored Panda this morning (a most dangerous pastime! perhaps “wastetime” would be more appropriate? 😉 ) and there was a set of photographs under “Trending” (in the right hand column) called “Fairy Tales Come To Life In Charming Photographs By Ukrainian Photographer” – beautiful “fantasy” type photos, but I was rather struck by the name of one of them – “Alyonushka” – I’d never heard that name before, so I Googled it. It turns out that it’s an old Russian folk tale, but I thought the name was quite pretty, and the rest, as they say, was a forgone conclusion. I’ll keep the character – and thus the name – until I want to use it. Then the name holder character will cease to exist, and one of my other girls will be renamed with the now unclaimed name 🙂 They are beautiful photographs though, and there’s heaps of worthwhile and fascinating things to see on Bored Panda… if you have a spare lifetime to go and look 🙂

I barely had time to look at the photos, Google the meaning and find the story, create the character, and log out, before we were – finally! – off, and out of the apartment! First we went to Howards Storage World, to look for drawer and shelf organisers – honestly, there are few shops that it’s very dangerous to leave me to “browse” in – one is handbag shops (where some strange women adore shoes, I adore handbags – one can never have too many handbags! 😉 ) another is Chemist shops (so many Perfumes! Creams! Lotions! Make-up!) and places like Howards Storage World (all those fascinating and intriguing boxes, big or small! bags! bottles! racks!) I think I must have been a pack-rat in an earlier life – I love to “collect” bits and pieces that I’ll probably never use, don’t really want, and certainly have no room for… But anyway, after getting several items there (which will be utilized tomorrow, or so I’m told)  we went off to The Pines shopping centre. My slacks (of which I was so proud because I’d lost enough weight to be able to fit into a size 24!) were getting so big that they were on the point of falling off me – so I got another two pairs… down, not one size, but two! I’m fitting, very comfortably, into size 20 slacks! I don’t think I’ve done that for, umm…  about 45 years? At least! Probably longer… So after (mentally only) dancing around in delight for a few minutes, we then went off to Doncaster Shoppingtown. Himself wanted to get a new small non stick frying pan with a lid – our old one had died (after 20 years of faithful service!) so we shopped around for one – we ended up getting one from DJ’s – expensive, but hopefully it too will last for 20 years… I got some new face cream and some eye cream (see? Cosmetics of any kind are like catnip for me! My eyes go all glassy and I just…can’t help myself. I buy it! 😉 ) Then we went and had lunch (I’d taken one of my bars with me again) and met up with a friend of Julian’s while we had coffee. We had a really big (supermarket-type) shop to do, and then, finally, we came home… around 4 o’clock-ish. There wasn’t really time to do anything much – by the time we’d got everything inside and had a much needed cup of coffee – I only had 3/4 of an hour before my afternoon Stair Walk! So I played Solitaire for a bit, then thought “damn it, I’ll go for my walk now!”, so I did.

Weigh-in this morning. I did go down again (I’m starting to get really nervous now!) – almost half a kilo, to 102.1kg This was good – however I only have another three sleeps before I have to start taking those rotten fluid retention pills again, so I hope my body decides to make the most of the time until then! I know that there’s no way I can get down to double figures before my Birthday, but I’d like to get as close as possible to the 99kg mark – like, say, 100.8kg or something! We’ll see… It all really depends on how much fluid my body decides to store this time around.

So look in again tomorrow night – I have absolutely no idea what’s happening tomorrow (except maybe for putting in the bathroom drawer and shelf organisers?) Oh, and I forgot! Before we went into Howards Storage, we went into the furniture shop next to it – and they had a really nice sofa bed, and a rather nice entertainment unit and matching side tables – tomorrow we’ll have to measure the space available in the lounge room – if it’ll fit, I think we ought to get it – our current side tables can go into the spare room, and the lounge room can have the new entertainment unit, with matching side tables, so everything will look “proper”. It’s certainly the best entertainment unit we’ve seen – and I mean, you can go on looking forever, and there’ll always be another “best one we’ve seen” – but how many “best one we’ve seen” do we have to look at before we chose something? (And then stop looking immediately, or as sure as you have to break eggs to make an omelette, you’ll see another “best one we’ve seen”!) However, the sofa bed is exactly what we’re (I’m) looking for – it’s even the right colour, and they have them in stock! So roll on tomorrow! I’ll let you know what we decide tomorrow night! 🙂 I’ll also fill you in on how my Bathroom re-organisation goes – I expect to be tossing out quite a bit of … “stuff” (and then, of course, I’ll look at all the empty space, and think of all the new stuff I can get to re-fill it with! Ain’t it always the way? 😉 ) So it looks like being another busy day again tomorrow – and I’m starting to get antsy because I want to get back to Rifting – lately it seems as though every time I start playing, I have to stop after only an hour or so because the shards go down, or we’re going out, or something else has to be done, or whatever… Oh well, rest assured that there’ll be heaps of news waiting for you all tomorrow night, not least of which will be what my weight’s doing (which was really what this blog was supposed to be for – documenting my weight loss progress! Ah well, “the best laid plans”, etc… 😉 ) So until this time tomorrow night, bee good, have fun, and stay safe! 🙂

Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.25.2

Finally, some progress on “The Adventures of Darth Carla” site was made today! I found a very expensive blog template (all of $18.00 worth!) and organised it. I also wrote Episode 1, though I do recommend reading the post before it, so that you’ll know what’s going on. It would also help if you’d been a member on my Bulletin Board, “The REAL CONNECTION” (later known as  “death… by chocolate!”) or been a participating reader of our “ver Ending Story…Never Ending Story… Never End…” So there it is… I suppose this means that I’d better commit myself to writing an episode at least once a fortnight – or even once a week – whichever comes first (in my priorities 😉 ) and I might even knock up the odd cartoon or so to go with it all. So now that TAoDC is up, and now that this blog seems to be going OK, I’m at a bit of a loss… No headers to make! No templates to look at and sigh over because they don’t work properly! What am I to do?! (thinks: I could always start a third blog…. No! NO! No more blogs! I have enough writing to do!) Anyone want a bespoke desktop Wallpaper?? Free?! ….thought not…

We got our lift back again this afternoon – too late to go shopping, unfortunately. I was on my way to my afternoon Stair Walk and we stopped and pressed the lift button, just to see if anything would happen… There was a whirring sound! Lift-type klanks and klunks! The doors opened… and a disembodied female voice said “Going down!”, or “Lift going down”, or something like that. I was totally nonplussed! I wasn’t expecting that! It seems that we now have a talking lift! Will wonders ever cease?! Anyway, we left the lift to its own devices and I continued on to the fire escape stairs and my walk… I’m thinking that I’m going to have to extend it to at least another half level, if not a full one – I’m not having to work hard enough – or put enough effort – into just the two levels, and while I am breathing a little heavier by the time I come back through the fire escape door, my breathing’s back to normal by the time I get to our front door (that is, the length of the lobby – our door is in the same position as the fire escape door, but on the other side of the lift well, which is in the middle of the lobby) 🙂 You know last night I said that I’d probably dream of shop windows all decked out in handbags, clothes and nice jewelry? Well, I didn’t dream of shop windows, per se, but I did dream that I was shopping! I was in a store similar to a Big W, and I think I was wanting to get a dress (and I never wear dresses, my ankles are too deformed, so I usually hide them under slacks – besides, slacks are far more comfortable!) The salesgirl ended up selling me… wait for it! A pair of shorts! I’ve never liked shorts – even when I was young, and so skinny that the neighbours used to invite me in and feed me sweet biscuits, because they felt sorry for me (you could count all my ribs and vertebrae, and my legs were like matchsticks! *sigh* I wish I’d stayed like that… :/ ) so… was it me saying that I’d probably dream of shopping (or rather, me writing about it) or my subconscious, yearning for the long denied freedom of the wide expanses of shop floor, crammed with lovely things that I might want to buy – that made me have that dream? Interesting question… I’ve always felt that the written word is far more powerful than something simply said aloud… So anyway, I ended up staying home again today, but, tomorrow! Ah! Tomorrow I shall fling wide these prison doors, and fly, free at last, into the bosom of the shopping centre! Which shopping centre doesn’t matter! If it has shops, I’ll be happy! (actually, I’m sorta laying it on a bit thick – like lime jelly, with a trowel – I do like shopping, yes, but I don’t live for it, and I wouldn’t want to spend more than a couple of hours at a time in a shopping centre – I just like exaggerating a bit, sometimes! 😉 ) At least now that the lift is back in action we’ll be able to get back on track to finish off the spare room – we need to get a sofa bed, a couple of end tables (or we could use the ones from the lounge room, and get new ones for there…) a nice floor rug… and I think that’s about it? Oh yes, and a couple of scatter cushions for the sofa bed – that’ll finish that room off nicely… We still need to get a longer entertainment unit for the big television – and if we use the lounge room end tables in the spare room, we could get end tables to match the entertainment unit for the lounge room… 😉 It looks like things are afoot in more places than the Mt. Buffalo plateau…

Weigh-in this morning. Oh, the dread! The fear and the anxiety, with which I mounted my scales this morning! But I didn’t go up, I went down! To 102.5kg – 2 whole points! The rebound, when it comes (which it will… soon!) is going to be painful! Oh well, I’ve been shedding fluid like crazy the past couple of days (I suppose my body has to get rid of it, to make room for all the fluid I’m going to be retaining after Sunday!) I just said to himself – “isn’t next Monday a holiday? Labour Day? Moomba?” Apparently not… they’re saving the Public Holiday, and the Moomba procession, for my Birthday! 🙂 How ’bout that! My Birthday is a Public Holiday! 😀

So drop back again tomorrow night – find out if I went shopping, and how much I bought 😉 or if we went out looking for sofa beds and entertainment units… (which reminds me – I need a new sponge, or loofah – one that won’t sandpaper my nail polish off like the one I have at the moment does! Priceline will have something…) So far, my new inky blue nail polish is holding out OK… but I think I’ll try the gold one next (I’ll save the yummy, luscious raspberry red one for lucky last! 😉 ) And, last but not least, I’ll let you know how my weight goes… as they say in the classics, “I have a bad feeling about that!:/ So until this time tomorrow night, bee extra good, don’t work too hard, and stay safe! ciao, all! 🙂

Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.25.1

Greetings all, this is just a very quick update – I’ve found, and implemented, an $18.00 (last of the big spenders, that’s me! 😉 ) blog template for “The Adventures of Darth Carla“. Episode 1. has finally been written, and is up, but I advise you to read the one before it, “What Has Gone Before…”, so you know what’s been happening. It’d probably be a good idea to read “About Darth Carla”, as well… it’ll give you some idea of just who, and what she is! 😉


The regular blog will be written later this evening…

Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.24

Goodness, what a day! Himself went off for his morning constitutional as usual this morning, and of course, stopped by the PO Box to see what goodies it contained… 🙂 It was my nail polishes!  YAYYYY! 🙂 I was over the moon! Last time they sent me an email saying that they’d been dispatched, a few days before they arrived – not this time though… or maybe they did, but I just never received it. My mail has been more than a bit “patchy” at best, lately, and it’s apparently impossible to find a mail service that doesn’t very heavily vet everyone’s incoming mail for spam and other nasties. Personally, I prefer to vet my own spam email, thank you very much – for some totally cynical reason, I simply don’t trust anyone else to do it for me – but it’s been snatched from my control for reasons that himself could best explain (an explanation in a comment would be appreciated, dear 🙂 ) because I can’t, and I’m livid about it! 😦 (I have been for some time, actually, but apparently they’re all doing it 😦 ) Anyway, mail grizzles aside, I’ve spent nearly all day searching about for another blog host – mainly because I’m getting fed up with some of the bugs in WP – the way headers don’t display on some templates when they’re supposed to, for instance. The lack of a decent variety of fonts to use (I mean, c’mon! It’s really hard making do with about 20 available fonts, when you have 2000+ on your own computer to choose from!) I didn’t even Rift today, except after lunch, when himself and I had a one hour traipse through Moonshade Highlands – and – punching way above our weight, we managed to finish off the weirdly convoluted, backwards and forwards, Dwarven Artifact quest chain! Hopefully we might be able to get in another hour again tomorrow! Anyway, I looked at all the so-called “main” blog sites – Blogger,, LiveJournal, Tumblr, Blogspot, and a few others – and quite frankly, they were terrible, compared to this – so here I’ll stay, for the nonce, and try to find something suitable for Darth Carla to reside in… I’m now exploring the $$$ templates… *sigh* So tomorrow, I’ll devote 1 hour only to finding a not too expensive template – after that, I’ll give up and Rift. If we don’t go out – because the lift will be back in action again tomorrow! (reprise: YAYYYY! 🙂 ) I shall probably dream of shop windows all decked out in handbags, nail polishes, clothes, and lovely jewelry tonight… 🙂

Because my new nail polish (oh my ghod! Himself has found “Kenya“, and is happily playing it in the background – It’ll be his fault if I don’t finish this blog tonight because I’m too busy banging my head against a nice, soft wall! 😉 talk about memories! 🙂 ) Where was I? Oh yes, my new nail polishes… I didn’t know which one I should try first… The yummy red one? (just like a rich, thick, metallic red duco – only serve with a dollop of whipped cream!) The scintillating gold one with the silvery sparkle? or the dark and brooding stormy blue, with the cobalt shimmer? Ah, decisions, decisions… what about painting each nail in a different one? Well, maybe not… I know I’m adventurous, but…  er… 😉 I’m not going to tell you which colour I picked… yet. I’ll tell you tomorrow night. So after Rifting with himself, I sat down to do my nails… waited until they were dry, then went for my afternoon Stair Walk. I’ve decided that doing my Stair Walk after breakfast in the mornings when I have a full stomach probably isn’t a very good idea – I was really pushing to get up the last stretch of stairs this morning – but if I go right after my weigh-in, it means that himself doesn’t get a chance to have his (much longer and more energetic) walk before breakfast – and if he does it after breakfast, it eats up too much of his day. So we’re going to try something different. He’ll go for his walk after my weigh-in, as usual, but he’ll ring me when he’s about 10 minutes from home. I’ll dart off (I’m getting a little bit better at darting, now!) grab the book to prop the door open with, and start my Stair Walk. By the time I’m on my way back up the stairs again, he should be back home and will meet me on the stairs to let me into the house when I finish (of course, I could take my keys with me, but I don’t have a pocket to carry them in :/ ) I think we’ll try that for a couple of days and see how that works out…

Weigh-in this morning. I’m now in abject fear and trepidation about tomorrow…I know I shall rebound, and go up, I just know it! 😦 I went down again today – only one point, to 102.7kg, but the law of averages say that for every ounce I lose I’ll have to rebound and go back up again (a little bit!) sooner or later… and I reckon that that “sooner or later” must be just about ready to fall on my fearfully anticipating head… Plus the fact that February is a short month, so it’s almost time for me to start taking those rotten fluid retaining pills again. I fear that my current downward spiral will be short lived… *sob*

So anyway, tune in again tomorrow night – you’re in for a veritable feast of news and tidbits from chez nous – what with blog templates I might, or might not have found for Darth Carla’s return, what colour nail polish I eventually decided to try out first, if I Rifted or went out shopping (and if we did, what did I get, if anything? I’m sure you’re all dying to know! 😉 We still have an IOU for a Valentine’s Day present for ourselves, too!) for the first time since February 9th, and of course, whether my weight went down… or stayed the same… or as I suspect it will, went up. And when you throw the random acts of Crool Forchin*  into the mixture, who knows what other newsworthy gems will be cast before you? But if you look in again this time tomorrow, all will be revealed 🙂 So until then, bee good, take care, and stay safe! ciao, all! 🙂

*with apologies to C. J. Dennis’s “The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke”, circa 1915

Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.23

Well, after scrambling to get my Stair Walk in before my shower, get dressed, and have breakfast, all before 11 o’clock (but as usual, I managed it – with time to spare – I don’t know why I always panic that I won’t…) I had my hair done this morning – and also as usual, it looks great (and using those straightening tongs, or whatever they’re called, really does help it look better for longer – who’d a thunk it!) – then himself had his hair cut and I’m still finding bits of hair in my basin this evening! What does your hair do, Julian, float up the drainpipe or something? 😉 After that, I spent the rest of the morning fruitlessly looking for a decent (free) blog template, that would give me a good layout with a solid colour over all (that is, no silly white column where the text goes – I hate that!) plus display a custom header properly! (Not just tell you that you can use a custom header, and then not display anything!) for the Darth Carla story. I’ve got a temporary holding template in place, but I don’t like it… more searching is in order… Julian didn’t get to go over and check the PO Box today – it was too wet :/ so I don’t know whether or not it was my nail polishes that arrived – probably not though, coz last time I got an email saying that my nail polish (I only ordered one last time) had been dispatched – this time I’ve had nothing so far *sigh* I wish they sold them down here in Victoria…

After lunch I got back into Rift for a bit, but I couldn’t concentrate, so gave up and halfheartedly looked at a few more templates, then went off to read. Later, looking at what passes for “news” these days, and listening to T. Abbott’s plans for new anti terrorism/security laws and such, I couldn’t help agreeing with a part of it, and objecting to the rest. The idea of revoking the Australian Citizenship of anyone who goes overseas to fight for any of the terrorist groups should have been enacted as far back as 2001, in my opinion. If they want to go over there and train and fight with them, for whatever reason, that’s their business, and they should be free to go and do so – on the understanding that they will no longer be considered Australian citizens, and no longer be able to come back to what used to be their home. No exceptions. But apart from that – they should be encouraging more free speech, not curtailing it, and they should pass a law that no person should be too easily offended! Honestly, some of the things I read in the media, and some of the shouts of “racist!” that spring to so many lips, regardless of the circumstances or context, sometimes I think “these people” (you know, the ubiquitous “They) do nothing all day except go through every newspaper, news report, magazine, gossip column – anything they can get their hands on – looking, specifically, for something… anything… that could possibly be called offensive, racist, mocking of some holy person – just something that they can raise the roof about and decry and vilify the person or persons who said, wrote, or even implied it! For goodness sake – it’s only words! I was born in 1946, and grew up in the early 50’s. My father was Italian, and you can’t begin to imagine some of the things I was called at school (that didn’t upset me too much – those girls were just stupid and ignorant – what did upset me was being teased deliberately to provoke my short, hot (and I’m afraid, very loud!) temper!) As Dad used to say – the names they called me were just words, and if I allowed them to upset me, that was my fault, not theirs. They didn’t know any better, but I surely did. (I might just add that during the war, my father was a hand to hand combat trainer in the Australian Army) So, anyway – people these days are too quick to take offense – they never stop to wonder if the words are meant to be offensive, or if they’re being said in ignorance. Perhaps a good motto for them to adopt would be “Never ascribe to malice what can be put down to stupidity

Oh dear! I’ve done it again, haven’t I! Another rant. I’m sorry – I’ll try not to do it again this month (this is the third one for February, I think!) honest, but occasionally I just get carried away… :/ Sometimes people just seem so… stupid!

Weigh-in this morning. Well, you can all rejoice and open the bubbly – I did go down again (I’m sure to rebound tomorrow though!) to 102.8kg (so I’ve lost 32kg since August last year! I still have another 27kg to go though… *sigh*) I guess the Stair Walking is helping a bit, even if it is killing my knee…  But I’ll stick to my motto: “Whatever it takes!” 🙂

So tune in again tomorrow night folks – find out if it was my nail polishes in the PO Box, or just another bill… and if I’ve had to resort to a third Stair Walk because my weight did rebound back into the 103kg zone. Mind you, it might still be raining tomorrow morning, in which case himself won’t be able to go for his walk, or check the PO Box, so you might not find out what its contents were! Wouldn’t that be disappointing! 😉 I’ll keep on looking for blog templates, but I don’t hold out much hope – I reckon I’ve looked at just about every (free) template that WordPress has, fifty times over! When (and if!) I ever do find a suitable one, and really do start writing The Adventures, I’ll let you all know, so that you can go and pick it all to pieces and tell me what I got wrong, eh? 🙂 On the other hand, I might just Rift tomorrow… give myself a bit of a break from blogs and graphics… and of course, by the next day, Wednesday, the lift will be working again! I hope… it should be… I’m going to be very unhappy if it’s not. But that’s the day after tomorrow, and nothing to do with the news and gossip that I’ll be bringing you tomorrow night! So until tomorrow night, bee good, drive carefully in this wet weather, and stay safe! ciao, all! 🙂

Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.22

I’m starting to get a little bit… annoyed… with WordPress! If you can’t add a header to a blog template which gives you every indication that you can add a header, then they shouldn’t give you the dimensions of the header to make – should they? I wanted to make a few changes to “The Adventures of Darth Carla” (my alternate blog) this afternoon, so I found a (free) template that I liked, chose all my colours, organised my Widgets, did all the hard slog – looked at the header instructions (1000 x 250 pixels) thought “Yeah, I can make one that size!”, and I did. I saved it. I uploaded it. I instructed the template that that was the header to use. But. No header! I spent about 15 minutes trying to get the ruddy thing to display – nope, no go! (this isn’t the first blog template that has done this to me here at WordPress, either!) I can add a manual header (that is, write it in myself in the template set-up thingy using their fonts and colours), and what it displays when I do that is small... less than a quarter the size of the “recommended” header size that they tell you to make! All I can assume is that they got the header size wrong! I might try making a really small one tomorrow, and see if it’ll display that one… on the other hand, I might just try looking for another template – one that actually works! *grrrr!*

Anyway, as today was Sunday, himself and I traipsed off into Telara for another fun day of questing for fun and profit. It was a most successful day all round! We did finish off in Scarwood Reach this afternoon, having completed all the quests, won a special Achievement for earning three Hunting Tokens (for bringing back three “trophies” from certain Named Creatures* in Scarwood Reach), polishing off the final Rift and Rift Boss (the one I usually have to ask for help with – it’s almost impossible to finish solo!) and!!! Going up four levels! Amazing!! 🙂 When we finished Scarwood Reach we had the option of going off to Droughtlands or Moonshade Highlands. We opted for Moonshade Highlands and started off on the long, extremely convoluted and complicated, quest chain that starts off when you go and look at a strange Dwarven artifact – which magically transports you from your home city (Meridian, in our case) to Moonshade Highlands. Naughty Trion! They’ve gone and added an extra Porticulum to the mixture and not told anyone about it! (well, they didn’t tell me!) It caused a bit of confusion at one stage, as it was simply added to our list of known Porticulums – I thought it was the Porticulum almost directly below us being added (you used to have to go and talk to a Porticulum Master to open it and add it to your list, but that’s now changed – you only have to get within a certain distance from them and they get added automagically to your list) It would have been a lot easier if we’d known it was there… Oh well, my next girls through there will know and be able to take advantage of it… Better late than never, as they say in the classics… We’ve finished as much of that particular quest chain as we can for the moment, so next time we play we’ll go back to the Defiant end of Moonshade Highlands and just do “ordinary” quests until we level up enough to handle the rest of those weird Dwarven ones. Julian commented several times about how easily we were dealing with the mobs in Scarwood Reach – and so far in Moonshade Highlands, too! It makes me slightly uneasy – I’m getting the niggling feeling that something’s changed. Either we’ve been souped up, or the mobs have been made weaker – it never used to be this easy to level up, and I don’t think I like it all that much. There’s not much challenge any more! I used to dread it when himself insisted on going for yellow or orange quests (Green quests = fairly easy – mobs around your own level. Yellow quests = slightly harder quests – mobs up to 3 or 4 levels higher than you are.  Orange quests = pretty damn hard (or they used to be!) – mobs more than 4 levels higher than you.  Red quests = forget it Freddy! mobs up to 10 levels higher than you. Except in cases of Divine Intervention, you will die!) Now, green quests are hardly worth doing, they’re so easy. Yellow quests seem “just about right”, and Orange quests are very do-able and not to be shunned. So what’s changed? Where have the challenging quests gone? Have I, all of a sudden, become a Master Gamer? able to leap Orange quests in a single bound, and wave gaily at the Red quests as I sail overhead? I don’t think so… or is it that in order to attract more and younger players, Trion, in their wisdom, have dumbed Rift down to the point of “is it really worth playing?” And that would be a big shame…

Weigh-in this morning. I really didn’t think I would have lost anything this morning, so I mutely climbed onto the scales, fearing the worst. I went down to 103.0kg! Five points! I was stunned (and very happy!) I won’t make it to double figures by my Birthday, but I’ll be reasonably close (I hope!) I don’t expect this pleasant downward slide to last too much longer, but I might as well enjoy it while it does! 🙂

So tune in again tomorrow night – so you can commiserate when my weight goes back up again tomorrow morning (which it might! This is me we’re talking about, remember! 😉 ) or open the champagne if it goes down 🙂 Tomorrow is “Hair Day” and I’m looking forward to looking human again 🙂 Tuesday will see me getting geared up for…  Wednesday… Oh, Wednesday! Bliss! The lift should be back in action!  Which has given me a thought… When we’re going out, why don’t I… walk down to the ground floor, take the lift down one floor to the Garage (I’m not sure if the fire escape stairs actually go down to the Garage? Julian?) we go off and do our shopping or whatever, and on the way back, I get out on the third or fourth floor, and walk up from there! (as well as doing my normal, daily Stair Walks, not instead of them!) I’ll think about it, anyway – my knee is giving me hell on the going down bits. Hopefully I’ll hear something (please,please,please) about my nail polish tomorrow (I’m getting a trifle anxious about them – can you tell? 😉 ) I’ll let you know how my experiments with the template(s) for “The Adventures of Darth Carla” go – and I really must find the time to start writing it properly, and not just thinking about writing it! So until tomorrow night, bee good, don’t melt in this heat, and above all, stay safe! ciao, all! 🙂

*Named Creatures – special Elite monsters which have yellow nameplates (that is, they won’t attack you without provocation) and a little “diamond” icon next to their names.  When you kill them, they drop a “trophy” object which you can exchange for a token. When you collect three tokens you get a special Achievement and bonus experience points.

Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.21

Well… another day… More Stair Walking, more Rifting, and more Stair Walking again. I actually spent most of this morning collecting yet another lot of “mounts” that I couldn’t resist buying, in Rift. I wish they existed in real life – they look like great fun (and a great way to very quickly end up dead, or a paraplegic!) They’re sort of like a cross between a boogie board and a skate board. They’re quite large, round-ish, and they don’t have wheels. They skim through the air a couple of feet from the ground, and you stand on them and balance, much like you would on a surf board. As I said – I couldn’t resist getting one – and of course, because I bought one, all of my characters, on all shards, got one in their mail box, which I then had to run around and collect. Two shards have ten characters each… Two shards have eleven characters each, and my main two shards have twelve characters each. I had to visit sixty six mail boxes! It took a while… Then I had to tidy up the mess I left last night while I was trying to find out where a friend’s character was, and why they’d got stuck. Finally I was able to get back to Persha and her slow climb to level 20. (She’s now level 15…) I decided to grab the “Close a Rift to gain a Planar Charge” quest and swim her over to Freemarch (see previous post) she didn’t have a “water breathing” necklace. Hmmm… Who had it? It turned out that Jadenfyre had it, so I had to get him to post it to her – I could have swum her over without it, but there’s lake in Freemarch which very often has Artifacts in it, so whoever’s questing and running around in Freemarch does quite a lot of deep-lake diving, and it’s ever so much more easier if you don’t have to come up for air all the time! 🙂 Anyway, she got her necklace, jumped on her “shark with feet” (it’s the only mount that swims natively, and its swimming is a lot faster than my swimming!) (See?! There I go again – trying to do things the quickest, easiest, and most efficient way! I know – it spoils all the fun an’ all that, but I just can’t seem to help it!) and went over to Freemarch. Once there I hung around the starting area and closed three Rifts, then I headed off, picking, mining, and skinning my way along the well trodden Artifact Run. I leveled up my Skills, found about 40 or so Artifacts (which wouldn’t even have been remotely possible in Silverwood!), and got my “Merchant of Death” title, and then I went back to Silverwood to continue with the quest chains there. The only person who won’t be leveling up past level 8 – and therefore won’t need to go over to Freemarch – is little Hialeah, the Auctionator and mistress of the Guild Bank Overflow accounts. She’s a Hunter/Marksman “Rogue” (in World of Warcraft she’d be called a Beast Master Hunter) and while they used to be my preferred Class to play, I really don’t want to play them any more – they’re just too slow, and even more fragile, and harder to level up, than Mages! So, anyway I didn’t spend any time on my graphics today – I was too busy collecting mounts and “untangling” a few characters in Rift.

I did spend a bit of time looking in Howard’s Storage World for the sort of sliding baskets I want for the top shelf in my bathroom cupboards, and I think I’ve found what I want, but I’ll need to see them before we decide to put them in. Roll on next Wednesday, when the lift should (cross fingers, touch wood!) be back in action! I’m starting to get really frustrated, being cooped up in here… :/ And I haven’t heard a word from Willow Byron Bay about my nail polishes, or if they’ve even been dispatched yet! *sniffle* *sigh*

I won’t really be able to get back to my graphics until Monday afternoon, or Tuesday – tomorrow’s Sunday, and of course we’ll be running all over Scarwood Ridge killing spiders and other nasty things… Actually, we might even finish Scarwood Reach tomorrow, and I’ve just been trying to think where we go off to after that… Hmmm… it looks like we’ll have a choice of Moonshade Highlands ( levels 36 – 40), Droughtlands (levels 36 – 44), or Iron Pine Peaks (levels 41 – 47) I vote for Moonshade Highlands! I always get turned around and go the wrong way in Droughtlands, and I hate Iron Pine Peaks, it’s always snowing, which makes visibility hopeless! Of course, with Moonshade Highlands we also get the terribly long and convoluted quest chain starting with the “Dwarven Artifact” that lies just outside Meridian and Sanctum – but it does give us both Moonshade Highlands and Droughtlands to play in 🙂

Weigh-in this morning. The more things change, the more they stay the same – weight-wise, anyway. Yes, 103.5kg again today. Not fair. Maybe I will have to do a third Stair Walk, after all… I really, really don’t want to, but if it’ll make a difference, I’ll do it…

I think I’ve decided that I don’t like sitting on this side of the room (not that the other side would be any different, really) You see, I have my back to Julian’s desk and that side of the room. We have tiled floors, so there are no floor boards to squeak or creak, and we always go bare footed in the house, so there’s not even the sound of shoes on the tiles. It’s very quiet, movement-wise in here. If I could have just one dollar, for every time I’ve started to say something to himself, only to find myself talking to thin air – because he’s got up to go elsewhere, but hasn’t said “I’m just going to…” to me, or anything, and I haven’t heard, or seen him go – I’d be an extremely rich woman! I think I’ll get a cow bell and hang it around his neck, or make him wear wooden clogs on his feet! It’s more than very annoying, it’s… it’s… well, I dunno, but it makes me mad!

So anyway, drop by again tomorrow night to find out all the news – did we finish Scarwood Reach? Was it Moonshade Highlands we went on to, or was it Droughtlands or Iron Pine Peak? (I’ll tell you, if I kin ‘ave me d’ruthers, it won’t be Iron Pine Peak!) I’m sure there’ll be lots more to tell you, like did my weight go up, down, or stay the same (again)? and if so, did I cave in and do a third Stair Walk? (unlikely, but you never know…) So until this time tomorrow night, bee good, don’t do anything silly, and stay safe! ciao, all! 🙂

Winter’s log, earthdate 201502.20

There! That’s much more easier than trying to think of an appropriate title every night! 🙂 Just so that you know, it’s figured out by the year (2015) plus the month, February (02), and (according to Wikipedia: Stardate) “The digit following the decimal point is generally regarded as a day counter.”, therefore, as today is the 20th, I ended up with 201502.20. Get used to it – you’ll be seeing it every night from now on! 😉

Well, I had quite a busy Rifting day today – I was wrong! I thought I had young Rubyfox up to level 18 yesterday, but she wasn’t… she was only level 16! On the other hand, I was right – I did get her up to level 20 this morning! 🙂 I try to alternate leveling Defiants and Guardians so as to give myself a bit of a change in quest chains – Rubyfox was Defiant, and has been questing in Freemarch. The girl I’m leveling now, Persha (pronounced “Persia”) is a Guardian, and is questing in Silverwood. Although I know all the quests backwards, forwards, and inside out, it’s still a nice change to be able to switch between the two areas 🙂 I think Persha is currently sitting on level 12, so it’ll be a day or so before I get her to level 20 – and in the meantime I have another girl, Copperfire (she who’s name must be changed, like last week! I don’t like the spelling. Unfortunately I hit “Enter” before I had a chance to re-think, and I actually got the name (I wasn’t expecting to, you see) I could always re-roll her, I suppose… it’d certainly be cheaper than renaming her!) who was acting as an “experimental guide” for a friend who came over this evening. He’d been stuck between quests and wasn’t sure how to proceed, so I used her to find out exactly where he’d got stuck. All sorted out now! 🙂 (I hope! 😉 ) So now she’s at level 12, and although she’s a Guardian, she still has unfinished business over in Freemarch, so I might work with her tomorrow, to get those loose ends tied up, and then go back to Persha. It’s very strange – the Defiants over in Freemarch have very regular (almost “Old Faithful” like!) Rifts opening up in the starting area. Both factions have quests which require them to (a) collect planarite by closing Rifts, and (b) close a Rift to gain a Planar Charge. This is easy-peasy in Freemarch, where “baby” Rifts open up approximately every three or four minutes in the starting area, but next to totally impossible in Silverwood where you can consider yourself really, really lucky if a Rift opens up somewhere vaguely close to the starting area… occasionally… every hour – hour and a half or so. I think a lot of people are finally waking up to the fact that they can do what I now do as a matter of course – swim from Divine Landing in Silverwood, over to Ark of the Ascended in Freemarch, and use their almost constantly opening Rifts instead! (I’ve noticed an increasing number of Guardians over there lately, and I reckon that that’s why!) Artifacts are also much easier to find  in Freemarch – there is a definite “Artifact run” around the area between the starting area, Ark of the Ascended, and Meridian (the Defiant’s capital city) where Artifacts can be found on an extremely regular basis – there is no equivalent over in Silverwood, where the absence, or you could even say complete and total lack of Artifacts is boringly regular. Usually, the first things I do when I get to Divine Landing are the following: (1) Get the Porticulum (this happens automatically now) (2) Get my training in Foraging, Butchering, and Mining, (3) Swim over to Freemarch, close three Rifts, then mine around the Ark of the Ascended area, pick up herbage and wood, kill wolves for their pelts, all whilst looking for Artifacts on a quick “Artifact run” on the way to Denegar’s Stand where there’s a Porticulum you can get if you’re careful (remember, you’re behind Enemy Lines! 🙂 ) so that you can return easily any time you want to look for more Artifacts, or get your Skills up (there’s also a lot more mining nodes, animals to skin, and herbage to pick, over in Freemarch!) As to why these discrepancies exist between Silverwood and Freemarch, I have no idea – but the Defiants definitely seem to get the “gravy” while the Guardians get the leftover “beans” 😦

I also worked on some more blog icons again today – I wanted to do something with an Owl, but I don’t think I’ve found the right font, or rather dingbat, yet because they looked a bit… er… weird? Not quite owl-like? I wonder if I could use a brush instead? I might try that tomorrow… in the meantime though, I made more Zodiac signs (in a different style) which look quite good. I’ll see what tomorrow brings… 🙂

Weigh-in this morning. I weighed in at 103.5kg today – Not too bad, I suppose, but it’s still (as I keep complaining!) too slow! I haven’t extended myself to my suggested/threatened three Stair Walks a day yet – but I will if I have to, in order to speed this process up a bit! I am getting better at this Stair Walking business, and I think I’m puffing less each time I go – but it’s really killing my left knee! It’s a matter of  “one… ouch! two… owww! three… ooo! me knee!” – yes, I count the steps aloud. I don’t know why, I just do, OK?

So that’s about it for today – it was good having Josh over tonight – I just hope he remembers what I told him about where everything was in Rift, and to call me if he gets lost again 🙂 He’ll learn – it took me three years of watching my favourite eldest daughter, and then Julian, playing World of Warcraft, before I decided, very timidly, to see if I could play too… I thought I’d be terrible – and I was, at first, totally hopeless – but it’s amazing what you pick up just by watching… It didn’t take me long to get the hang of it.

So tune in again tomorrow night – I haven’t heard anything from Willow Byron Bay about my nail polishes – I hope they arrive soon! Maybe I’ll get an email tomorrow saying that they’ve been dispatched… Oh, and there’s good news about the lift! Apparently everything is on track for lift usability on the due date, the 25th – next Wednesday. Hooray! I’ll be able to go shopping again! Get some slacks that don’t gape like the mouth of a Whale Shark around my waist! 🙂 But in the meantime, I shall do what I do best… Muddle along, as usual. That’s about all the news for tonight, but there’ll be more for you all this time tomorrow night – both dramatic and mundane occurrences for me to either sob, laugh, sneer or complain about (as usual, eh? 😉 ) But until then, bee good, behave yourselves, and stay safe! ciao, all! 🙂