Thursday, September 28, 2006

Metta Sutra

I'm at a chapter about loving everyone & treating everyone with kindness & letting go of ego. She gives an example that even when she is furious she knows that everyone is happier when her ex-Dh's wife is happier, so she makes the ex-wife happy. My first thought is 'but then she wins' and that is ego. you're supposed to give up your need to be right, to control & to be angry & then this kindess comes to you. You are supposed to love EVERYONE as much as a mother loves her child. everyone. That is a hell of a leap. One I'm not so sure i am ready to make.

This is a version of the Metta Sutta, tHe Buddah's Words on Kindness. Many people chant it or just read it aloud every day

This is what should be done
By one who is skilled in goodness,
And who knows the path of peace:
Let them be able and upright,
Straightforward and gentle in speech.
Humble and not conceited,
Contented and easily satisfied.
Unburdened with duties and frugal in their ways.
Peaceful and calm, and wise and skillful,
Not proud and demanding in nature.
Let them not do the slightest thing
That the wise would later reprove.
Wishing: In gladness and in saftey,
May all beings be at ease.
Whatever living beings there may be;
Whether they are weak or strong, omitting none,
The great or the mighty, medium, short or small,
The seen and the unseen,
Those living near and far away,
Those born and to-be-born,
May all beings be at ease!
Let none deceive another,
Or despise any being in any state.
Let none through anger or ill-will
Wish harm upon another.
Even as a mother protects with her life
Her child, her only child,
So with a boundless heart
Should one cherish all living beings:
Radiating kindness over the entire world
Spreading upwards to the skies,
And downwards to the depths;
Outwards and unbounded,
Freed from hatred and ill-will.
Whether standing or walking, seated or lying down
Free from drowsiness,
One should sustain this recollection.

meet a famous person

There are a lot of people I would like to meet who are famous historically, not really too many who are famous currently living, in fact I am not really coming up with anyone currently alive.

Foremost among the no longer living I would like to meet Mary, the mother of Jesus. His whole childhood, apart from that episode in the temple, is unrecorded and I am really curious about it, and about her and what it was like being the Mother of God. Were there temper tantrums when he was 3? Was he a moody adolescent? Did he do his chores willingly or did you have to nag him? How much of a scandal was there really about his birth and what exactly does the bible mean by "the brothers & sisters of Jesus"? what did she think of Mary Magdalen? I have a lot of questions for her actually.

I'd also like to meet Elizabth I and Henry VIII and get a few historical ambiguities cleared up.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

If you could have a designer come into a room

of your house and redecorate it for you, which room would it be and what would you ask them for?

hhhmmmm... I'd love my kitchen to be remodeled but that requires major structural changes and involves an architect...

So if it was just a designer I'd like my family room redone. It's big, L shaped and white, with creamy beige carpet. It has an odd conglomeration of furniture (I've expounded on this in other posts - the sofa!)and lacks any coherent...well, any coherent anything actually. I'd like it to be warmed up with color & warm toned wood floors. I'd love furniture that at least went together if not actually matched. I'd love some built in storage and a new desk for my computer. Moving the wood stove from the far corner to the middle corner would be nice (so would a new wood stove). and something needs to be done about the former entryway area that is part of the family room as well.

Monday, September 25, 2006

new blog incarnation

blog ver 4.1

this poor blog gets redone more than any other. i think should start a new one but then I look at this one & think "I haven't done anything with this topic in ages. just reuse it, everything is set up already" and so I do.

this blog has been about weight loss & about random things & about spirituality. This time it's parenting. We'll see how *that* goes.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

About the tabs...

See entry about a week ago where I say the tabs on Firefox just didn't do it for me....

I decided to give Firefox another try with my new faster speed & find I kinda like the tabs. Especially for browsing galleries, now that things are loading at a decent speed. I can open 18 layouts in one window on separate tabs and comment & alt-tab to the next, comment, alt-tab, etc. I am doing much more commenting this way rather than flipping to new windows (and my laptop never likes me having that many windows open) or haven's to go 'back' 3 pages to get to the main page.

I also like that I can set the 'my homepage' option to be several sites so everytime I open it the 5 sites I visit regularly during the day are already there waiting for me.

Just in case anyone from Microsoft were to come by this post...the reason I decided to try FF was I DL'd IE7 and discovered you had tabbed it. If I am going to deal with the tabs anyway I'd rather go with the less buggy, less virus prone, lots of cool extensions software instead of yours. I'm not anti-Microsoft, but since you went and added the one feature that was really keeping me away from your worthy competition, I pretty much had no choice. You made me do it.

catching up

Here are some responses to the prompts I have missed this week

Guilty pleasures?
Trashy romance novels. Regency era bodice rippers. I feel guilty even buying them & could never face have a record of them at the library so I don't borrow them (though I donate them). Not sure why. It isn't as if I read 'improving' books or stuff from the NYT Best seller list. I read a wide range of things, travel essays, food essays, various historical things (mostly non-fiction). I just finished reading a book called "Sex with Kings" which is all about royal mistresses from the 15th to the 20th century. But for some reason reading "Scandal's Bride" or "the Lady's Chosen" is just too embarassing to admit in public

Throw it or save it?
Save it - 99% of the time. I am a horder. I had at one point over 2000 books in this house, many from my teen years. I had so many pullover sweaters I could wear a new one every day for a month & still have a few left over. Don't even get me started on pens, hair doodads, purses and tarot decks. But I find muyself the last few years getting into these pitch it moods and when I am - clear the way. Bags and boxes and piles of things go out of the house, to Goodwill, to the library, to the flea market, to the dump. There are still about a 1000 books inthe house, but only 6 sweaters. Its a small house with no attic or basement. There are now 4 people living here. We just can't hoard stuff like I used to.

What fragments of your past stay with you even though they seem insignificant?
This is embarassingly easy - embarassing moments seem to stay with me. Doesn't matter how insignificant the moment was, whether I was the only one who noticed, whether it was a conversation with 2 people or in front of a whole room full, all of them linger in my mind & pop up when I least expect them. All those squirmy feelings, still as fresh as they were 2 months or 25 years ago.

Friday, September 22, 2006

been sick

I've had sinus problems starting Saturday. By Wednesday I knew it wasn't allergies but a sinus infection. So I went to the doctor. I have a history of bad sinus infections. She checked me out & the verdict was sinus infection & bronchitis. Bronchitis? I'm not coughing. Nevertheless I have both. These were the two illnesses, individually & combined, that kept me sick for nearly all of 2004. She put on a mega dose of amoxicillin and gave me a second presecription of something else (can't recall) and said if I was no better in 2 weeks toget the 2nd prescription filled. Lovely. As soon as DH came home Wednesday night I went to bed. I felt like someone had stuck a knife under my left cheekbone and I had begun to cough and ache and sweat and have chills. Flashbacks to 2004. About 9pm I told him that if I still felt this way in the morning I would need him to stay home. At 6am I tried to get out of bed to go to the bathroom and the left side of my head exploded in pain when I lifted it off the pillow. So DH stayed home and I stayed in bed, moving as little as possible. Eventually I suppose the amoxi started to do it's job. The fever, chills & coughing subsided by 6pm. My head still hurt if I moved too much but the pain was less. Today my head hurts if I bend over, so I have been doing a lot of crouching to pickup things. I get short of breath & cough when I exert myself a little too much (Carrying a protesting 36lbs toddler up 3 steps to his room for time out) but I am feeling better. We stayed home today. Later we are meeting up with a friend & her kids to make cookies for the equinox. She's made all teh dough & stuff so I really only have to supervise the boys. DH may take the boys camping tomorrow or at least up to the property for the day so I can get a bit more rest.

I've completed 150 layouts so far this year. This was my scrapping goal. I've scrapped a lot of my 2002-2005 photos, nearly all the 'must scrap this' ones. Though my 'to be scrapped' folder is still quite full. I have a stack of things to be scanned from 1996-2001 but my scanner has been acting up. I think I need to reinstall the drivers. Sometimes this laptop seems to uninstall drivers on me.

I need to upload a few more of my layouts her.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

I am not complaining

really. I swear. This is not a complaint but a simple statement of fact. The reason for the disclaimer is that what I am about to say relates to my internet connection and as I have said before complaining about my internet connection is just my 'thing'. The one topic I am guaranteed to have something, usually negative, to comment on. Let me reiterate, this is not an actual complaint.

But Stacey, you may ask, did you not a mere week or so ago tell us how fast your new connection was? What could you possibly have to complain about now? As I said, this is not a complaint. I find my new fast speed to be a bit of a detriment to my established surfing style. I admit that is a negative statement, but it is not a complaint. See, when things loaded slowly I would have 2-3 browers open and while a layout in a gallery loaded in one, I was reading an already loaded thread in another, while waiting for a comment to post in a third. Having just one browser open did not make things load faster, it merely annoyed me to have to sit & wait. So I developed this multi-browse thing so I always had something to read or look at & could comment in 2 or 3 places simultaneously. The pages load too fast to do that now. Sure I can still have 3 browsers open & once something is loaded it will stay loaded, but it messes with my thought process & makes it hard for me to multi-task. I'm used to clicking on a thumbnail & having a chance to read most of page 2 of a thread while waiting for the layout to load. now the layout just loads. It's like my world is now missing chapter endings or commercial breaks. There is no natural pausing or break point any more. It just keeps going. I'm sure I will get used to it but this is a nearly decade long habit. It may take me some time

On a side note this window switching process of mine is why I don't use Firefox. People seem to love the tabs for multiple site. I prefer seperate windows. I've tried the tabs. everyone I know just raves about the tabs, but the tabs just didn't do it for me. Maybe now that pages load faster I might like it more. I know its partially habit. I look down to see my sites on the menu bar. tabs are at the top. That's just wrong. :)

Friday, September 15, 2006


I'm really bad at this sort of thing. I had to go to

S - silly
T - tolerant
A - ambiguous
C - complex
E - easygoing
Y - youthful

I guessed correctly & did not make Round 3. Oh well, I don't have to think about giving up my paying job at now. I would have if I made the DET but it would have been hard to do.

I've been flitting about, and (Digitals). They all have great challenges. Digitals wants you to use their stuff & I have nothing by anyone there. You can still do the challenges but you are not eligible for the prizes. They have some good sales right now but I have so many kits I bought in the past 6 weeks that I haven't used I can't justify buying more at the moment. Maybe next month.

this is my latest layout

Monday, September 11, 2006

Where was I?

I was at work. My bosses Dh called her & said he heard on the radio a plane had hit one of the World Trade Center Towers. Nothing was up about it on the Post or MSNBC websites yet so I called my DH, who was home overseeing air conditioner installation, and told him to turn on the TV. People are getting calls from freids and family about it. I have the only unrestricted internet connection in my immediate area so everyone is coming to me for details. YOu can't get any online, the sites are swamped. Everyone assumed it was some tragic accident. While I am talking to DH another plane hits the other Tower. Everyone is in an uproar when I announce this. (keep in mind I work in a call center, we have about 50 people taking inbound sales calls while another 10-30 people are milling about talking. everyone is on the phone. Rumors & reports are flying) Then we hear about the Pentagon. We are close enough to DC that people here have family there. I remember being on the phone with DH and him saying "There is only one tower standing! The other one has collapsed." and just praying for the people in the other that they can get out. Then it falls. HR gives up on trying to keep people informed and brings a tv up to our area and puts it on the empty desk next to me, turn it to whatever local channel we get with no cable and tell people they can come up & watch during their breaks. Some people go home. Most stay. Our main office was on Long Island. They were completely shut down by what happened and I had to deal with rerouting those calls to other centers. Not that there were many. The world is ending, you don't think about ordering adirondack chairs right then. The next day we would not be able to cope with the volume of flower order calls, but today would very very, eerily quiet.

I didn't really think about it at the time. I was interested in the story, but I spent 6 solid hours seeing the planes crash over & over, seeing the towers fall over and over, listening to the whole horror, over and over. Wondered if anyone I knew was in the towers or the pentagon (I knew people who worked in both) and knew there was no way right then for me to find out. Phone lines were jammed. I sent emails and hoped for the best. When it was time to leave I was worn out. Allthat exposure had affected me without me realizing. I was shaking & crying on the 20 minute drive home. When I got there I saw friends had come over & they were with DH watching it and talking about it & I just could not face any more of that. I was watched and talked out. I was scared and sad and shocked beyond anything. I wanted it all to go away for awhile. So I hugged DH and asked everyone to leave me alone. I went right to my bedroom, shut the door and turned on SciFi. They were doing a Star Trek marathon and for 2 hours I watched a bright, happy future, where mankind had abolished war and the human race was one happy family. I really needed that.

At 8pm I went in the living room and talked to DH (We'd spent a good chuck of the day onthe phone together) and called my parents and watched the news again. Nothing had changed of course. Speculation, but nothing real. I went outside and looked at the sky. Again it was eerily quiet. Just knowing there were no planes in the air in the country was freaky. Not that we saw many where we lived, but *knowing* it, bothered me. Knowing that if this had happened a week earlier I would have been stranded in Long Island now, I'd be watching it all live from the 8th floor of our corporate headquarters. I remember seeing the Towers from their call center windows. How can they be gone? What sort of madness would make someone do this? All those, why?

The people I knew at the WTC and the Pentagon were all alive. Some had lost friends or coworkers. I was able to watch shows about it that first year, about the WTC and the Pentagon. I can still watch some shows about technical stuff, structure, that sort of thing, but it is really really hard now for me to watch shows about the people. The survivors, yes I can watch sometime, but I can't watch about people who died. I can't stop crying when I do. I've never been able to watch anything about Flight 93. It was incredibly heroic, but it is all of my fears, all of my nightmares and I simply cannot face it.

My children were born after 2001 and this is history to them, the way Kennedy was to me. Something old people get very emotional about but time dims the reality of why to the people who were not there. Last year I spent part of Sept 11 building sand towers that my sons knocked down with great joy. It was a game we had played all summer. But suddenly I remembered what day it was and I called the game off & had to shut myself in the bathroom & cry for a little bit. They are too little to explain to yet. Someday in a few years they will come home with the assignment to ask me & their dad about it. Will I b able to explain what I thought & felt? Will I still cry when I think about it? Will I still be wondering why, still trying to grasp all of what happened?

Monday, September 04, 2006


100 words? Only? I ramble. We who ramble cannot be constrained by mere numbers. We must be free to go where our thoughts lead us, use as many graphic, evocative & creative adjectives as our minds wish. Ruthlessly ignoring the rules of grammer. Participles dangling, sentences unparsed (whatever that means) and verbs placed so far from their nouns, with so many intervening prepositional phrases, it is difficult to tell if they are the correct form or tense. Even the original topic is subject to discarding as thoughts free associate. 100 words? A mere 100? Exactly? Have you lost your mind?

Sunday, September 03, 2006

oh so THIS is broadband!

For those who don't know how these things are defined, apparently the regulatory body incharge of such things defines a broadband connection as being over 400kpbs for download and upload. My connection speed all these many months has been about 200 for download and as low as 27 for upload. Not technically broadband, but better than the 19.2kbps I was getting on dial up so I was not complaining.....not too much anyway. OK I was complaining, but complaining about my internet is just what I do. It's my *thing*. Everyone has a thing, I'm sure you do to if you think about it. There are worse things to complain about than your internet connection I am sure. But back to the matter at hand. We now have a blight on our landscape in the form of a 50ft pole and assorted guide ropes that results in me surfing at 557kbps download and 463kbps upload. DAMN! I'm surfing the DET contest gallery and pages are loading at incredible speed! Of course I am also perched on an upended milk crate in my badly lit junk room with my laptop on a wonky table, but I have 557kbps! And then there is the whole blight issue.... it's not a blight to 99.8% of the area. It's obscured from the road by trees and the curvy dipping nautre of the road. The house on our side of the street to our right might be seeing it, but maybe not, hard to tell given the distance. The folks who built the new log cabin across the road can certainly see it and it does sort of dominate that area of the yard from our perspective, especially as you come up the drieway but is mostly hidden from our veiw when we are in the 'play area' of our yard. If this weren't the country I am sure something would be said about it. Something may still be said about it by the folks in the new cabin, but maybe not. The think just *looks* like a radio tower, a short one, but still. I'm thinking since cell coverage sucks around here I might contact Cingular or Verizon & offer to rent them space on my pole for $100 a month (which is damn cheap BTW). It's up high enough to provide a decent range to an extender. :)

DH has gone into the office to get the proper equipment to make the pole official. The right bolts, weatherproof boxes, stronger rope and enough cable that I can move out of the junk room and back to my desk in the living room. So life is good at the moment. They are predicting thunderstorms off & on the next 48 hours. We'll see what have the antenna up above those pesky trees does about signal loss during storms. This one is supposed to be better at not icing up than the one on our short pole. I hope so, because I could reach it on the short pole to knock the ice off. I can't to that with the new one.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

woe is me!

Internet issues again. We had that all day storm yesterday and leafy trees + thick misty rain = no internet for Stacey. Well, almost no internet. I did manage to rig up a dial up with the internal modem from my dead PC to the laptop, with some network cable, duct tape & a really really long phone cord. The things you do for love. :) Connection was the usual 19.2 but the error rate was low enough to remain connected to the download of the DET kit, which was what I was most interested it. So over an hour & a half later I had the kit. Good thing I was on the dial up too because the power went out in the middle of it & the laptop stayed on battery with the phone line connected. Had I been on broadband I would have lost the connection. (and I only had 1 DL attempt left due to previous failed tries)

Last night I did the preliminary of my layout. It needs a little something & I have not quite worked out how I want to do it, so I am browsing the DET contest gallery. There were 43 layouts when I started commenting. There are 47 now and I still have half the original 43 to comment on. I really really want to try to keep up with everything this time around but my connection speed defeats me. I'm going to do my best though to comment on everyone. It just may take me a while

Broadband is back but can't be counted on. However we have a new pole we are going to put up later in the day on the theory of radio signal that "higher is better" Maybe we can get above those pesky leafy trees. We are technically just below the signal but how low remains the question. A 20ft pole failed to make any difference. This one is a 50ft pole. Remember, whatever men may say, they know darn well POLE SIZE MATTERS. :)