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I saw a coyote in the neighborhood for the first time in a decade yesterday. It wasn't all skin and bones like the last one I saw, but certainly wasn't plump. i've seen a fair number of our weird inbred bunnies around, which I assume are their major food source.

I've been sickly and headache-y pretty much every day since I got back from Santa Fe, which is irritating as fuck, especially since I need to limit my screen time, and I came back with new ideas to figure out and family photos to restore, the latter more urgent as my Dad has been in and out of the hospital a lot recently.  Hands are still not all the way healed, so I'm going to stick to the computer instead of trying to draw again. I think, but I really want to get back to having a major interest that isn't fandom.

That said, the Black Widow movie was fun, and the Loki series was uneven as fuck, but given that the next Marvel offering is my very favorite character and we know that at least a few episodes are pulled directly from the best run of the comics ever, I'm on board at least that far.  The new Leverage is, as expected, quite good. I am still confused that I have become a person who watches television again.

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Land of enchantment

Santa Fe is pretty, all blue sky and adobe buildings. Lots of public art, but so far it's just stuff we've seen from the car while settling in and erranding.

I've already gotten a bit too much sun, and the absence of significant bodies of water (the river is currently dry) messes with my head a bit, but it's a heck of a change of pace. 

The gluten free sections in the local grocery stores are amazing, which is good. We got a place with a kitchen because traveling with a kid who has celiac and food texture issues means eating out is close to impossible. 

Tomorrow we're going to the international folk art museum, the kids are really excited about the exhibit on Yōkai.

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 My thumb was feeling decent today even if my wrist is a bit dodgy, so I spent some time doodling on adobe sketch which was really frustrating until I realized that I was in "wet watercolor brush" mode, which is really cool and makes up a bit for the fact that the brush on my 4 in 1 stylus is only registering intermittently. Having the spreading effect to counteract the perfect roundness of the regular end of the stylus made it feel a lot more comfortable. I didn't make anything but a mess, picture-wise, but I'll take anything at this point.
I want to get back to the pencil drawing class soon, but I can do this with a lot less pressure on my hand. 

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goddamn diet culture

I went to look for ways to treat myself -- a gold star equivalent -- for doing some ugly, yucky stuff, so I searched for "non-food rewards" because
  1. I already know that chocolate and cheese exist.
  2. After cleaning out truly stinky stuff I don't even want to think about food.

Even though I specifically did NOT take the drop down suggestion of "non-food rewards for weight loss" I got ... page after page after page of non-food rewards for weight loss.  Which I really do not want to look at right now, even if they might have good ideas, because I'm not particularly happy with my recovering body, and don't need further reminders that it is in a state society finds shameful  (Yes, I know that's 99% bullshit, but having the energy to remember that when I've not got energy to spare is just ugh.

I eventually used enough google-fu to find lists of "rewards that don't cost money" from the frugal lifestyle sites, which were slightly helpful and would be more helpful if it weren't a pandemic and if I were in better health, and some habit/organizing site lists that had things besides food. The "go to a drag show" suggestion made me both laugh and side-eye. But I really should not have had to come up additional queries to get them.

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how is it May?

Got my second covid jab, and did not escape without side effects this time, sadly. Headache, general cold-esque discomfort, and combined with my usual temperature regulation issues courtesy my regular meds, I think I slept maybe 2 hours, in chunks. I haven't had a decent night sleep in months, but that's a bit extreme even for me.   (Anyone know the magic keywords to find a blanket that has literal weight but doesn't actually retain much warmth?)

My grand "get more shit out of the house" plans for today have therefore been scotched, but I at least got the lights dim enough to do computer work, so taxes go in today -- finally found the last form I needed. I am exceedingly unimpressed with the credit union that SECUWA/Inspirus merged into, but I don't know that there are any better options out there.

We have a plan, but not reservations, for the four of us to head down to Santa Fe when school is out before R moves East; everyone but Dan will be fully vaccinated at that point, but he isn't eligible until July.

There is finally one room that is basically entirely clear of clutter. I like standing in it and just breathing.

I read a story that had me howling last night -- it's an Avengers AU, but you could swap any names in there and it would lose nothing but a funny reference or two. Goofy cross-cultural supernatural romance hijinks: My Big Fat Wolf Wedding.

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    Dua Lipa - Be The One (Netsky Remix)

time keeps on slipping into the future

It's the end of Spring Break (which was basically just an extended weekend, we didn't do anything in particular) and it continues to feel like limbo land. I'm not quite sure how they are going to fit the rest of school into 8 weeks, particularly with the new weird schedule they are doing to accommodate the hybrid student population (we stuck with the "Zoomies" rather than the "Roomies". OMG those names kill me.)

Gotten my first jab yay.

O has settled on they/them pronouns and being called Olli after a lot of exploring things. I'm not making the verbal switch as quickly as I expected, though given the preceding 17 years it's a predictable speed.

A new big chunk of improving house livability got done, which among other things makes it possible that i can do zoom yoga classes, which I kind of desperately need, and also there is now a comfy chair to curl up in and read (a change of scenery from bed) that the dog cannot get to.

My thumb/wrist sprain is improving (did I remember to post about spraining my thumb?) but continues to suck. Still can't hold a drawing pencil, drinking glasses are dodgy, getting out of bed can be weird.

Having a weekly TV date with Sean because of the new Marvel series-es has been really nice. Both because we haven't done anything Date Night ish in years, and a shared new media experience is fun. I guess we're going to watch one of his favorite series (The Magicians) next, since Loki won't be launching for two months. (Falcon and the Winter Soldier was good, but not as good as WandaVision. It had to do more heavy lifting in setting up things in the larger universe, though.)

I have been listening to a frankly shocking amount of ABBA.

R is finally getting to take in-person classes in Santa Fe, but not soon enough to salvage the program there given some of the stuff that's been cancelled, so she's going to move to the first-choice-but-too-far-away school in North Carolina.

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sameness continues

Being stuck at home continues to wear on the entire household. Being semi-snowed in really shouldn't have made a difference to that vibe but, well, it did.

I got two lessons into the first drawing class I bought at udemy and realised it was *not* what I needed, and then was pleased that the $125 course I decided to take instead went on sale right after I made that decision.  It's still pencil and therefore not remotely intuitive, but has a lot more specific exercises, and I will suck it up and deal. (How to draw from beginning to master)  So far I'm making value scales and practicing blending techniques, which isn't exactly fun but *is* necessary, and feels like learning scales for piano.

Am I actually going to use this in my art business? (Am I going to re-open my art business?)  I don't know. Fanart is a strong possibility because fandom has been such a source of comfort and I like the idea of giving back. Whether I use the same pseud I make bookmarks with IDK, because I don't think I want anyone to be able to connect some of what I read back to my real life parent-ness. Or have the kids be able to make the connection, but if I make anything good I want to be able to share it here/instagram/ao3.

I've also been mostly managing to keep up with the cardio portion of my attempt at establishing better habits, which is awesome because I can already feel the difference in that it takes me longer to get out of breath, and I've been able to slowly bump up the speed (the treadmill we bought 15 or so years ago is finally getting really consistent usage between me and the kids PT.

I finally figured out one thing to do with lemon curd that doesn't require baking (I put it on a waffle) but I'm still kind of floundering. I know it's basically jam, but putting it on regular toast just seems wrong, and I really don't think it would pair well with any of my normal sandwich fixing. (chicken and jam or turkey and jam, with or without cream cheese, rocks.)

I guess that isn't entirely sameness after all. Nice.

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Bodies are irritating, education continues

the hormones have kicked in fully and I’m getting mini-hot flashes 3-10 times a day, including at night. I am really not looking to 5 years of this. I’m poking at thredup and similar to start replacing a bunch of my clothes that are synthetic with cotton/bamboo/etc, and went ahead and bought some bamboo nightgowns and (not yet arrived) linen-cotton sheets to see if that will help, because not sleeping through the night is really fucking irritating. (I normally run too cold. I’m pulling shirts/blankets on and off constantly.)

I had no less than 15 sketch pads, all different kinds of paper, and STILL had to buy two new ones for the online drawing class I’m starting. It’s ridiculous. Cheap, though, and can be used for other things than what we’re doing in the class.

I picked the bullet journal up again, which I had kind of dropped when my main tasks were surviving, and it’s been really helpful; it’s gotten me back on the horse with daily workouts and almost-daily German practice. And the motivation to do something about the sleep situation is harder to forget when I’m looking at a solid row of “bad sleep” markers in the monthly tracker. 

The kids have started a new term, and I’m glad to see the back of the last one with (miraculously) only one class that will need to be retaken. I heard a rumor that I absolutely believe that at one of the local high schools half the student body is failing at least one class. I am hopeful, though, that this term there won’t be a month where a kid is simultaneously studying the Holocaust and Cancer (this happened *while* I was in chemo) which went predictably badly considering how much stress we were already under.  The goals for their Health class sound waaay better than what we had, like, learning about mental health and making good choices on many fronts and the specific “knowing how pregnancy occurs” goal that was not there and very much needed at my high school.

WandaVision continues to be awesome and I’m ridiculously happy Darcy Lewis and Jimmy Woo are back. Sean and I are watching it together which is something I haven’t done with anyone in... maybe since before we had kids? Or soon after that?

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