CharlieMC (charliemc) wrote,

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Update Time!

It's a new month! Hurray! Maybe we'll have some better luck around here in October than we did in September...

Not that I'm really complaining, mind you. Marilyn mistressmarilyn and I are still (and always) 'glass half full' girls! To hell with negativity.

But that doesn't change the fact that life has been beating the hell out of us recently. (grin)

Marilyn had her car accident, for example. At least they didn't total the car! That would have been pretty brutal, as we seriously can't afford car payments right now...

The car 'went in' to the shop for repair this past Wednesday, so we currently have a rental. The rental car is fine, but smells of cigarette smoke, I'm afraid. (Ugh.) We'll live until the car is done, anyway.

Marilyn's surgery bills just keep rollin' in! The original 'estimate' of the expense was (needless to say, I suppose) off. It's been more. But it had to be done, so whatever!

Rose Festival had to freeze salaries again this year. That makes five years in a row that Marilyn won't be getting a pay raise. She was one of those deciding to do it, but it doesn't make it easier from a financial point here at home. (sigh)

Meanwhile, sister Sue has the paperwork to do for her bankruptcy, but seems to be procrastinating. (I'll do a 'friends only' post regarding more on Sue later, by the way. I've been meaning to, but just haven't had time to get to it...)

So we've officially started to help with her bills. Aside from that, I'm paying every time we do anything together. She wanted to go to Starbucks day before yesterday, so we did -- I paid. Yesterday we took Nicole (her granddaughter) to McDonalds and got food for the three of us (and to bring home for Marilyn) -- I paid. Yeah, yeah, that's 'nickle and dime' stuff, but it adds up, even so...

The car not being totaled was a blessing mainly because with helping on her bills we seriously can't afford a monthly car payment right now.

But don't get me wrong, we're getting by fine. In fact, we just bought a new 'outdoor fire bowl' thingy (firepit?) that we're going to put together (today? tonight?) so we can have a fire on the deck over the weekend! It's really cool. We had to go to this 'party' (I use the term very loosely here) recently and they had one. (Picture mostly couples -- men and women couples, I mean -- and those are all mostly parents with kids along. Then you've got Marilyn and me. It was... interesting... heh...) The weather that day had been on the edge of nasty, so we were worried it would rain on the outdoor event! But the rain held off and they had tents -- but it was chilly! (With all of us dressed for a Hawaiian theme, especially!) You should have seen people clustered around that fire!

Our fire bowl came with a screen (a big plus if you're going to use it on a wood deck!), so it should be really fun. Can't wait to try it out! (And we got it on an end-of-summer sale, too!)

Thanks to Evamaria shirasade, our copy of "Troy" is on the way here as we speak! Delightful! Can't wait...

Marilyn finally got her primo LOTR research book in the mail, by the way! She paid more than the actual cost of the book in postage and handling to speed up getting it and it still took forever! I was appalled by the cost and their attitude about the so-called 'one day' postage. Basically the 'one day' goes into effect only when they finally get around to shipping it out! Awful.

Especially in comparison to ordering and receiving my new version of Paint Shop Pro (yes, v.9 is out!) and Virtual Painter (plugin for PSP), which took only a couple of days! Go figure.

We're constantly buying books for fic research, though. And we literally spend hours doing research (and I mean hours and hours) for just about every fic we write. This new book is fabulous. Hands down the best.

Marilyn and I both just finished fics for a challenge at the Legolas_Aragorn_Slash list (at Yahoo! groups). I used that book extensively in finishing my two chapter fic! It's got the entire LOTR timeline (according to Tolkien) broken down so that you can really follow and understand it! My fic was placed during the first part of the quest, so I can't tell you how badly I needed that timeline. Whew.

As for the challenge, it finishes on the 8th of this month, so after that we'll put the fic up to our website -- I'm hoping to finish up the fic banners today...

I so admire Marilyn! In the 'list of bad crap' I started above was her losing her entire fic yesterday, after hours and hours of work writing it. She was (understandably) heart sick about it. She dashed home from work to help me 'hunt' for it on the computer, but through some glitch (probably with our horribly ancient version of Word) it was simply gone.

She did shed a few tears, but then she quickly pulled herself together and said she simply re-write it. That the story was 'in' her and she'd manage, even if the words weren't exactly the same.

Having been the one to read it aloud a couple of times while we both beta-ed it (the original) and then doing the same with the finished product late last night, I can only say she somehow saved the best of the original and improved the quality of what was changed! Just amazing. She's such an inspiration to me when it comes to writing...

And I'm becoming as fixated (as much of a fanatic?) as she is about finding just the right word... I love that, actually! There were three occasions (that I recall) where I had to hunt for a word in that fic and then felt so satisfied after! (smile)

Well, what a surprise! Mt. St. Helens just blew again! Nothing major (yet), but I guess you can see the steam and ash cloud at Sue's house (though not from our house -- too many trees).

I don't want to face that mess again. It was awful the first time around back in 1980. (Ugh.)

More later!

Tags: 2004, accident, bills, books, car, fic, marilyn, mcdonald's, october-2004, starbucks, sue's-bankruptcy

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