telophase: (Default)
I think today may be one of those days: I sat down on the edge of the bed and put my socks on, then put one shoe on, and then spent some time looking for my other sock before realizing it was on my foot.

*yawn*

Oct. 20th, 2014 10:09 am
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Toby and I went to a weekend-long LAN/boardgaming/hangout party friends of ours threw over in Dallas. A lot of games were played. And everyone got into the spirit...cut for cat, er, proof )
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This AskMeFi question on the subject of differences between UK and US houses ended up with a small side-trip into the concept of dens. Someone gave this explanation of a den: A den is sort of a library/office/guest room. It may or may not have a door and is often off the living room. It's not really all that useful, except when you have guests. Then it is.

Which is a bit different from what we called a den (or 'family room'). I posted this:
Where I grew up (Texas), a den is also known as a family room, and is a less-formal gathering/hang-out space. The living room (or parlor, if you have delusions of grandeur) is the formal gathering/hang-out place. At my grandparents' house, the TV was in the den, while the living room had the uncomfortable furniture that kids weren't allowed to splay out on, and which was used for adults to have dull, boring conversations when my grandparents had dinner parties. At my parents' house, the den had the TV and my mom's loom, and the living room had the fireplace and the stereo. Again, when my parents' friends or coworkers came over for activities other than watching TV, they were entertained in the living room, while I stayed out of their hair in the den and watched TV.

Mr Telophase and I have a vaguely similar setup in our house, but it's now split between the living room (fireplace, bookcases) and the media room (TV, video games). I insisted on that when we were house-hunting, because I wanted to be able to sit in one room and read without being distracted by his gaming.
So. What is YOUR concept of a den? (Besides a lair for animals, hah.) I suspect it's really been superseded by media rooms in modern houses. Toby's parents have a great room, which is a living/kitchen/breakfast area, and a really tiny dining room off of it, and a room that they use as a combo office/media room. They built their house a few years ago.

My mom's house is closer to 30-40 years old, and while the kitchen is a separate-ish room, it's got one big room, divided into three by archways, that wraps around the kitchen and serves as living, dining (Mom uses it as an office), and...big weird room that looks like it used to be a back porch that was enclosed, but which I think is actually built in. Here's a rough floorplan I threw together. (It's a townhouse--row house for you Brits, if I've got that terminology correct--with houses attached to it on either side.) I have NO EARTHLY IDEA what the thinking originally was for that house. It was built for entertaining, I think, but the kitchen is weirdly enclosed, except for that island open to Room 3 on the plan. Room 2 is VERY DARK, even with wide archways separating it from the living room and Room 3. I'd have at the very least bashed a pass-through between that room and the kitchen. Mom uses it as an office, and splits Room 3 up between her dining table and a big loom.
telophase: (Default)
Bug Rachel, not Writer Rachel!

We've got something that looks like these on our tomatoes now, and have lost 2 tomatoes already. Suggestions? :) I did just go out there and squirt soapy water (the 1 tbsp hand soap/1 pint water ratio) on them just to feel like I'd done something.

I think the crape myrtle bark scale crisis is over--we ended up cutting off 3 of the worst-loking limbs and spraying soapy water all over the rest a few times, and we haven't noticed the white stuff spreading any.


(But yay...finally getting more tomatoes! There are several little green ones starting to grow, and we'd like to actually eat them! There's also 3 jalapenos hanging off the jalapeno plant...need to look up when to harvest them.)
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(1) Got a phone call from Fed Ex; they're going to attempt redelivery today. Yay! (see previous posts).

(2) Note to self: next time you make cassoulet, pretty plz remember to pull ALL the bay leaves out. *ack, pthbtbtbt* Eating a whole bay leaf is kind of nasty.
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ZOMG my angry tweet at FedEx worked (see previous entry)! A PR guy replied and offered to elevate it. :D
telophase: (Kenpachi - killing something?)
HEY GUESS WHAT. FedEx claims that nobody was home at 10:30 AM when they tried to deliver our JapanRail passes! You know...nobody except MY HUSBAND WHO WORKS FROM HOME. And not only does the door tag say it's NOT going to be redelivered tomorrow, they say we have to go up to their facility at I20 and I35 to pick it up! That would be the NORTH intersection of them, not the south, which is far closer to where we actually live.

I phoned them and the person on the phone could only say "It shows here that delivery was attempted." And claimed that delivery would be reattempted tomorrow, but the door tag says we have to pick it up. I said I would like to register a very strong complaint that the driver didn't knock or ring the bell, and she said she'd let the station hub know. and then I sent a couple of very strong tweets at @FedEx and @FedExHelp on the off chance that someone was actually listening, but I am not optimistic.

I have no idea why people claim FedEx is better than UPS. I have had problems like this about 50% of the time I've had to use FedEx, and many, many, many times fewer with UPS. A FedEx driver even once left a signature-only package containing a credit card that was overnighted to me at my door without knocking--I was at home waiting for it.
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Listen to Wikipedia. "Listen to the sound of Wikipedia's recent changes feed. Bells indicate additions and string plucks indicate subtractions. Pitch changes according to the size of the edit; the larger the edit, the deeper the note. Green circles show edits from unregistered contributors, and purple circles mark edits performed by automated bots. You may see announcements for new users as they join the site, punctuated by a string swell."

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