Monday, June 17, 2013

Dear, Deer, Turkey

My beloved -- who a few weeks ago acquired a painful fence-building-related tendon problem, and just last Friday had physical therapy to banish the remains -- spent his Father's Day continuing to build this long fence along the back of the yard.  He was a man on a mission.  (Our lot is nearly triangular -- narrow on the street side, long on the back side that borders the nature area.)

But alas, one of those hungry deer jumped the fence and ate about half the foliage of a young fruit tree, and part of another.  This also happened in the fall, when the junior trees were stripped naked of all their leaves, and he vowed revenge in the form of the fence.  Well, it is a nice-looking and sturdy fence, anyway, with 1x1's well-spaced so that there is still a view through it.  He's also kind of ticked at the birds, who are eating plums from a more mature tree without his permission. 

Meanwhile, a "lady turkey" has been visiting outside the fence -- which isn't huge news to those of us who work at home, because there are lots of wild turkeys around the hillside, and it's not even terribly unusual to see them wandering the quieter streets, looking for whatever turkeys look for.  When traveling in a flock on the street, the dude turkeys have been known to challenge automobiles they suspect of dishonorable intentions toward their womenfolk.  Oh, the strutting and flaunting of tail feathers!  But, my beloved has not spotted a turkey so close before.

That's the wildlife report.  What's going on in your personal environment?


esperanza said...

Boy howdy. I came over here to make a post just so I could complain.

I need a reality check from non-church world.
At my home church, where my parents still attend, the pastor and the session/council/governing board AND the higher up governing board all agreed that pastor should leave. Congregation was basically required to give her 6 months' severance pay, based partially on the length of time it takes to find another church position. That was all taken care of in a meeting last week, with substantial, today, in fb world, she announces that this coming Sunday will be her last Sunday, she will not be looking for another church position, as she has been attending Real Estate school and hopes to be receiving her Real Estate license within a month. And, btw, could she sell you a house?

Does this seem crummy?

Also in church world, higher ups behaving badly, nothing unethical I don't think, just incompetent. I am almost inspired to write a letter, as I am in a position with little room for repercussions. But all I have is vague memories and impressions and "I don't like her" is not a letter I need to write.

AW: Baboos are rocking swimming lessons.

kathy a. said...

it sounds like a very unhappy parting on both sides. but such an abrupt departure -- sure, it's kinda tacky (especially the real estate part), but one suspects the negotiations were not graceful on the management side. in the real world, why would someone who was fired stick around for 6 months while they find a replacement?

go, baboos!

esperanza said...

oh no, she is leaving. The 6 months pay is pure severance. But part of the argument for providing said severance is that it takes a long time to find another position.

kathy a. said...

this seems, then, like a place where different things collide, and the contract mentioning severance pay prevails. i can see how the congregation feels cheated. (but then again, they wanted her gone, and this was a price they were willing to pay.)

i'm far removed from the fray, so just ask you to consider: there must have been something good about her, something that she might carry to future endeavors outside the church. a real estate career may not be very profitable, but it might also allow her to do good works as well. not quite what was contemplated, but what's done is done. xoxo

Queen of West Procrastination said...

I'm home from E and my Trip North Without Fun Daddy! And boy, do I have whines.

W1: Apparently E has stopped being a good traveler. The crying, oh the crying. The trip up took much longer than usual.

W2: My sister. She and I traveled together. Sometimes she is difficult. Last night, while I went to bed early to handle the day of travel, she stayed up very late talking with a friend. And then proceeded to wake up E when she went to bed. So, I was up several times in the night, and then was up for good at 7:30, to find out that Sister J was exhausted from her night. I drove more than half way, and then was so deliriously tired that I asked her to drive. When we got home, she complained to Mr. Q that she had to drive, because "QWP was 'delirious'." (Said with sarcasm.) I made a bit of a sharp retort and then hid in the back of the house with the baby until she was gone, because all I wanted to do was yell. One of us made the choice not to sleep well last night.

(Also, I didn't get to sleep in the car, because E was being high maintenance, and so I'm grumpy.)

AW: The joyous reunion between E and Mr. Q.

AW2: E actually did sleep more on the way home than she did on the way up. Maybe we'll be able to handle this summer's planned Epic Road Trip.

kathy a. said...

whine of the mundane: wow, do we have a dirty dish backup. and i have reverted to Evil Mom mode, because my daughter is not even unloading the dishwasher. grr.

Miranda said...

AW: I delivered on the Work Albatross very late Friday evening and after I tie up a few loose ends, it becomes someone else's Albatross.

W: The theme of today was "There was some confusion." Why on earth anyone thought I could fix it is beyond me but I did try.

AW: Swim aerobics with a friend!

Anonymous said...

From a longtime fan....

I had a really, really awesome date last weekend.

A(nother) Nonny Mouse.

kathy a. said...

yay, nonny!

Queen of West Procrastination said...

ANM: !!!

Miranda: Finally! Go go go away loose ends!

Continued whining: I talked with my mom this morning, and apparently my sister was complaining to her about the fact that I made her drive at all. She didn't think I had any reason to be tired at all! (Never mind the fact that she KNEW that E woke up three times that night. But apparently "I stayed up late with a friend" trumps that. BTW, this sister of mine is 35.)


Sue said...

ANM - Yay!!!!

esperanza - It does take a while to replace the minister but I wonder if it's fair to ask the person who has been canned to provide pastoral care to the people who just fired her. I understand that the pastoral relationship is two-sided (or three, if you include Presbytery) and there were clearly problems on both sides, but still....

Maybe it's just me, but in this case it seems like taking the bandaid off quickly is a better route.

Can the Presbytery provide a pastoral charge supervisor who can also do some preaching?

kathy a - your backyard is like a zoo! Kind of awesome until you start losing vegetation. Sorry about the dish backup.

QWP - I'm so sorry to hear about your weekend. How awful.

Miranda - yay on saying goodbye to the Albatross.

AW: GREAT pride parade on Saturday - the first ever in our city.

W: BAD board meeting on Sunday. The. worst. ever. *face palm*

AW: Day off today to work on my writing project for the Big Writing Workshop next month.

I've got about 2500 words written. The deadline is next Monday so I'm feeling good about my progress.

W: Minor panic last night when I realized that I am now committed to my topic. Up until now, if I had really hated what I had written, I could start over. Now it's too late for that.

*breathe Sue*

esperanza said... situation: I don't care what she does next. I do care that she was not upfront about her plans, because she claimed her need for severance based upon an assumption that she was continuing in ministry. I think everyone is ready to move on.

Sorry about the crummy meeting, Sue.

And breathe.

Sue said...

Oh my. That presents a different scenario doesn't it? If she gave the impression that those six months would be spent in a search for a new ministry, then she should have either come clean about a change in plans or continued with the search.

Is Presbytery at least being helpful? I feel bad for all parties here - another church mess, another pastor in a secular job.

In other Whines: We woke up to cat bark this morning. On the new area rug. Of course.

kathy a. said...

QWP -- uck, sibling whining. The fact that you're a parent doesn't mean you are HER parent. Bonus tacky points for whining to your husband and mom.

Yay, Miranda!

Sue -- yuck on the bad bad very bad meeting, but hooray for the writing flowing! Also, the pride parade sounds fabulous!

esperanza said...

Sue: no. Heavy-handed would be the nicest way to describe it. They are notorious for this sort of meddling.

I assume cats only bark on new rugs, if available. Mini somehow managed to have a bedwetting accident (extremely unusual for her) in which the bed itself remained dry. How is this possible? Apparently she was sleeping on the floor, because it was quite soggy. Which I figured out when I stepped in it, of course.

kathy a. said...

Well, cats do prefer new rugs, but any old place will do. (White rugs are just as unacceptable as white pants, in my opinion. Things happen.)

The carpet pee accident certainly sounds prize-worthy. Many condolences.

kathy a. said...

Today's SIL installment, in which I freak out about the cost of haircoloring and styling... Because, that's what's on her mind, and her last visit to a fancy stylist ran in the neighborhood of $150 + tip.

I'm not a good person to judge these things, since I get my hair cut maybe once a year, at a cheap place, and do not do the color. So, what's a reasonable price?

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Kathy A: I'm not really sure what a reasonable price is anymore. It depends regionally. It definitely is outside of SIL's budget, it sounds like.

AW: Sister and I had it out and are putting the weekend behind us. I have no illusions that she'll be any different in the future, but I've had my say.

W: Last night, Mr. Q said "I promised the grade 12 biology class that I'd bring them brownies sometime, and now tomorrow's the last day of classes." In the middle of a heatwave. Even with fans, the house didn't cool down last night.

AW: Brownies! I helped because it gave me the opportunity to try out a new recipe. So, this week: brownies for everybody!

Pediatrician whine update: we got a notice in the mail that E has an appointment with an eye physician/surgeon in August. I had no idea she was being referred. Apparently the pediatrician got so worried that her (NORMAL RANGE) head shape might affect her vision (even though the Canadian Pediatrician Society says there's no scientific evidence that there's a connection).

Well, we'll go to the appointment, and it doesn't hurt anything for us to consult with another specialist, but I'm just so tired. E is fine.

(Before our next ped appointment, and before this eye specialist appointment, we'll see the physical therapist again. She deals with all the head shape issues for the health region, and maybe I could ask her to write something to th pediatrician, explaining all of this. He's still new, and just gets really nervous and over-active about issues that are new to him.))

kathy a. said...

Well, I found some places near her that are more like $75. My beloved informs me that people regularly drop $200 in the city! (This is probably not news to anybody but me, the poster child for creative hair neglect.)

This is kind of a silly thing to worry about, but I'm trying to sort out reasonable boundaries. My SIL is no longer going to be doing what she wants, living where she wants, and spending what she wants -- her choices have been disastrous these past few years, and her finances are in ruins. We cannot jump every time she says jump; we cannot fund her every desire (she has many).

We are trying to keep her safe and well cared for, while preserving our own sanity. She's lost a lot of control over choices recently -- but I guess we can manage to do hair maintenance for her main "extra," since that is important to her sense of self.

The facility called about the hair issue yesterday. They have a stylist who goes there to do hair, but they told my beloved that she's no good! My SIL's idea is that her first ex needs to go up there right now and take her to get her hair done -- oy. Fortunately, the meddling ex seems to have decided to meddle no more. (I suspect his current wife has been employing the cludsticks.)

kathy a. said...

QWP -- brownies!!!! Yay!

Well, there isn't really a down side to having an eye specialist check E, and relieve the worries of the ped, except the time and trouble. No down side to asking the PT to write a note, either (although the ped won't rest until a Medical God signs off). This has to be motivated by not wanting to miss something potentially important -- which is a better medical attitude than going the opposite direction and dimissing concerns. xoxo

Queen of West Procrastination said...

I know, I know. But, at this point, he's referred us to a neurosurgeon and then a physical therapist, both of whom have said she's fine. He just keeps looking for problems. (I think he's frustrated by the fact that the PT won't send her for helmeting, because he doesn't believe E's head is in the "normal range.")

But I'm glad he's so diligent. It's much better than a doctor who won't believe you that something's wrong.

esperanza said...

W of clashing parental decisions, day-to-day variety, causing distress between Mr. E and me. Nothing new, but summer exacerbates everything.

kathy a. said...

V. old skool, Esperanza! Wishing luck on getting on the same page, at least on the most irritating things. (This is yet another pick your battles situation.)

esperanza said...

Yeah, and I'm just getting weary of this particular battle. But I'm not giving in, because I'm right (of course). And I'm the one that deals with the consequences, since I'm with them all the time.

And I have absolutely no information to share on haircut costs. My grandmother cut my hair until I got married. Which leaves me very uncomfortable in hair salons, what with the chit chat and the tipping and the people who aren't related to me. Sigh.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Oh, esperanza, you'd be jealous of my dad! He's never paid for a haircut in his entire life (going to be 60 in August). His father was a barber, and then when dad moved far enough away that Grandpa couldn't do the haircuts, Grandpa trained my mom to cut Dad's hair. (She now has him convinced to let her always do buzz cuts, so that she doesn't have to stress out about the scissors anymore.) We're planning a birthday card for him that says "Congratulations on 60 years of not paying for haircuts!"

(We've stopped telling him how much we pay for our own haircuts, because it scandalizes him, regardless of what we pay.)

kathy a. said...

Esperanza -- Well, see -- the one who deals with the consequences gets a stronger vote. It's a rule.

QWP -- that's a great story!

esperanza said...

I think so, too. Thanks for your support.

QWP: I like almost anything that is frugal, haircuts included.

kathy a. said...

Frugal is a good word. Good concept.

esperanza said...

I find it much more appealing than "cheapskate."

Sue said...

I love the word frugal!

This week on WW it's Frugal Rock!!!!

I really need some sleep...... :)

kathy a. said...

New twist! SIL called the lawyer to complain about her hair situation. This is the lawyer who is trying to prove SIL is incompetent. The lawyer was a little startled. SIL must have gotten her number off of the papers.

The nurse has been trying to get SIL to go to the in-house beautician, and that sounds like a decent and frugal goal.

In other news, the lady turkey was pecking around inside our fence! The dogs didn't notice.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Oh my! So, will this situation help the lawyer's case?

And the nurse's goal is indeed the wise and frugal one.

Baking update: banana bread in the oven. I should be doing something wise and frugal, like baking my own bread again (especially since it's rainy today), but I needed something fast and relaxing, after dealing with Post-Six-Month-Shots Fussy Baby.

Banana bread for everyone! Banana bread fixes everything.

kathy a. said...

Mmm, banana bread! Hugs to the post-shot kidlet. (Thankfully, they forget these things.)

esperanza said...

ugh, I should be making my own bread again too. I was on a quest for a decent whole wheat sandwich bread last summer and got discouraged with a series of bread-shaped doorstops. It bothers me when a loaf of store bread never molds no matter how long it hangs out on the counter.

And...hmm...I seem to have "won" a round in the ongoing parental disagreement. Bedtime is happening MUCH earlier than the other night, even though I am not in charge tonight. (AW).

esperanza said...

And...a giggle. Sweet, among other things, has club feet. I just checked on Teh Book of Faces for a group. There is one, but there are also groups for people who are interested in feet for other reasons. Ahem. Ew.

kathy a. said...

Ahem, well. To each his/her own, where feet are concerned. But yay on the bedtime issue!

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Ew. So much ew.

Have you tried the whole wheat bread from the Joy of Cooking? It makes three loaves, and I really like how it turns out. (I do 5 cups ww flour to 3 white, instead of the 50/50 mix that it calls for.)

esperanza said...

I was trying for 100% ww, which explains the doorstops. SO heavy and dense. I will check it out, thanks.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Oh! There's an all-whole wheat recipe in there too, and it has turned out non-doorstop for me. Make sure you don't use any of the Joy cookbooks from before the 75th anniversary edition, because the grandson retested all the recipes for the anniversary ed.

kathy a. said...

Yeah about the book of foot pages. Makes one want to disinfect, just thinking about that.

Best with the bread baking! Fruit breads are all I've ever managed. I have a special baking pan for 3 baguettes, but never got around to actually baking any. Don't you need like an entire herd of teenagers to go through 3 baguettes before they turn to rocks?

Sue said...

Um ew. Just ew.

Can't help with the bread-shaped doorstops. When I have made bread for hubby I've used the breadmaker. He said it was "okay" which means it was a doorstop.

Deadline for Big Writing Project is Monday. It's both exciting and terrifying.

kathy a. said...

How long is the writing thing supposed to be? Is this an actual in-person workshop? I assume there will be critiques and suggestions?

A lot of people don't like having their written work reviewed -- maybe because they feel confident in their own perfect ability to communicate, or maybe because they feel diminished when they see suggestions for improvement. Something I really like about my corner of work is that it is usual and expected for a colleague to review most of the substantive written work. Nobody's perfect; two heads better than one; and I do love seeing something expressed more elegantly than I managed on the first try. :)

That said, sometimes a reviewer will go totally freaking overboard with the red pen. My former boss is famous for fussing over little bits of language and punctuation; and when the draft is changed to conform with his suggestions, half the time he fussily changes them back. What's really helpful from him are questions and comments in the margins -- what about this? You should address that. Do you mean X?

This is a long-winded way of saying, no need to be terrified, Sue! You are a fine writer, and the entire point of a writing workshop is to hone the craft.

kathy a. said...

QWP -- SIL's call doesn't help the case, because the lawyer is not a witness. It is just an illustration of how disconnected SIL has become. I mean, she located the number on the form and used it -- but she has said nothing about the content of the form, that there is this court proceeding. It's all about the hair, this week.

esperanza said...

W: Summer is interminable. That is all.

kathy a., hugs.

Sue, they'll love you. If they don't, just say the word and the Cluestick Posse will be all over their red pens.

kathy a. said...

If they actually use red pens, they need cluesticking just on principle.

Sue said...

Sorry, I should have explained further. The writing submissions are for the writing workshop I'm participating in at the end of July. It is a week-long in-residence program with two rock-star preacher/authors as leaders and 11 other participants plus myself.

The writing projects (1000 -3500 words) will be reviewed and critiqued by the group during our afternoon sessions. I'm actually quite okay with critique of my writing. It's taken a while to get to that point, but I find it really helpful. That's why this workshop appealed to me so much.

The terrifying part is just a bit of old insecurity coming through. I know in my mind that it's irrational - what I've written is good - but I'm experiencing butterflies anyway.

esperanza - feel free to send some summer up here. Given the weather this spring and the forecast for the next week or so, our summer is going to be very short once it gets here.

AW: Visitors from Australia coming for supper tonight!!!

esperanza said...

It's the Baboos that need to get sent to Canada today, not the weather. But I'll pack some high 90's and oppressive humidity with lots of sunshine if you really want it, Sue. :)

Enjoy your supper! I sincerely hope Pillar is cooking and you will stay safely away from the kitchen. Just looking out for you!

kathy a. said...

Baboos! to Canada! Aww, we should all be so lucky as to see the Baboos in Canada.

Sue, sounds like a wonderful festive dinner!

Me, I have just engaged with teh Insurance Company, which wrote my SIL hoping to find ways to deny claims for her recent hospitalization. These people piss me the heck off, so they got an informative letter, which I asked be applied to all the other claims for that period that we haven't gotten yet, but ha. It was a noble effort, anyhow.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Baboos in Canada! They're welcome here (although the humidity is haywire here, since a large chunk of the western provinces are under water right now).

Uh, maybe we should send Kathy A's SIL here too, because that's ridiculous.

AW: The temperature is a little cooler today, and I'm baking a giant quantity of chocolate cake as a favour for a friend! I felt bad because I was trying to find a way to come and help her make cake/wrangle her pile of children tomorrow (goodbye party for their pastor, who is leaving to go church planting), but it turns out we have other commitments. But! It's a cool evening, we have nothing going on here, and I would far rather bake than decorate.

The benefits of having a baby who insists on going to sleep immediately after supper: time to do baking! (Downside: never get to leave the house!)

Chocolate cake for everybody!

kathy a. said...

Chocolate cake!

I would hate to inflict the SIL on Canada, which is a perfectly nice nation not looking for any trouble.

Sue said...

I suspect the Baboos would be bored here this weekend - nothing but rain and cold so no outdoor play. :(

QWP - are you near the flooding? Our son is in the Other Big City in Oil Province and is dry and safe. A colleague in High River is apparently trapped in her church. Her family was evacuated but she remained at the church and couldn't get out. Haven't heard anything in the past hour. Terrible stuff....

Esperanza - I stayed out of the kitchen except to fill drinks for our guests. The freezer door did not attack - thank goodness, that would have been awkward - and all is well. It was SO nice to see our Aussie friends again.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Sue: Oh my goodness! I hope your colleague is okay. This flood is so terrible.

I'm in the City Named After a Queen (the Wheat one, although I used to live in the Island one). A lot of friends and family in the Oil City. (My sister used to live there, and just found out that her old house is in the evacuation area.) Everyone we know is dry and safe, and a lot of them are housing evacuees. This is nuts!

Thinking about everyone from High River today.

AW: My own city is the only major Canadian city not built on a body of water. While our city had some minor flooding yesterday (poor drainage: we live on an ancient lake bed), we're safe and dry here.

esperanza said...

This flooding is awful. Hugs to everyone.

Glad you survived your entries into the kitchen, and that you enjoyed your dinner.

I have pulled out the big guns: If you aren't dressed by when it's time to leave, you aren't going to the rodeo. As we aren't leaving till noon or so, this seems reasonable to me. Ugh. I saw, in another place, moms complaining about making lunches. I would make all their kids' lunches if they would come convince Sweet to get ready for the day. That was PURE whine, pixies.

Sue said...

I'm glad all is dry in your area QWP.

My friend was rescued from her church and taken to where her family was evacuated earlier. Whew!

esperanza - Good whining - and a very reasonable request.