Allie Has Feathers now! (And Caity has a university result)

I haz so many feathers now!
I haz so many feathers now!
See my bee-yoo-tee-ful crest?
See my bee-yoo-tee-ful crest?
OI! Whose photoshoot is this, anyway?
OI! Whose photoshoot is this, anyway?
Pearly Wings! Pearly Wings! I haz got Pearly Wings!
Pearly Wings! Pearly Wings! I haz got Pearly Wings!

So Allie is a Very Pretty Bird.

And the university results for Semester 2 came out yesterday, and yes, we did add the marks up correctly – I got an A.  (When we added it up the marks came to 83, which is 2 short of an HD… bugger.)  So I did okay. (Insert lecture from mental health nurse here on importance of not being a perfectionist.)

Oi! I’m ALLIE! (and some uni results)

Allie hatched on the 1st, Sulphie on the 6th - fascinating watching the difference as they grow...
Allie hatched on the 1st, Sulphie on the 6th – fascinating watching the difference as they grow…
OI! I'm Allie! I'm 2 weeks old today!  Oo's a cheeky birdie then?
OI! I’m Allie! I’m 2 weeks old today! Oo’s a cheeky birdie then?

[As always, click to enbiggen]

BTW, the uni results came out early – no overall results yet (But in adding them up, I think I got a Distinction – 83 – for the semester).  The marks I got back yesterday were: 88% for my portfolio and 83% for the revised version of my story. Pretty happy with that!  I found out while I was at the CWA tea rooms with my two writing buddies – and they got similarly high marks (and even a little better.) We were all so excited!

The tea room closed at 3, so we moved to the upstairs section of the library, and then a HUUUUUUUUUUGE thundery hailstorm hit – the kind where the Bureau of Meteorology issues a warning with “THIS IS A VERY DANGEROUS THUNDERSTORM” written in a box on the map.  We waited it out (after a quick rush to the library windows to shriek in awe at the size of the hailstones, and have people comment “I hope your car is undercover!” to which I replied “Nope, that’s why it’s insured!”)

Right. I am still coughing.  Had a blood test to check if it’s whooping cough – if it was, I wouldn’t be infectious any longer anyway, since I’ve already been coughing for more than 3 weeks.  Bloody charming.  This despite having been vaccinated again after the 2011 flood (we had to get tetanus shots and these days you get a three-in-one of whooping cough, diphtheria, and tetanus.) But the whooping cough bug has MUTATED and so some adults who are getting their vaccinations aren’t getting protected.  DAMN ALL YOU ANTI VAXERS who have let this happen!  (BTW, I had my complete schedule of vaccinations as a kid – my Dad had polio so there was NO WAY we were missing a single shot/dose.  Besides, back then, you HAD to show a completed card to get into preschool – I had no idea that was no longer the case until I heard it on the news up here a week or so ago! I was SHOCKED.)

And now I have to get back to writing. I have a story to edit, and I’m only just finding the thread that’s holding it together…

Not much…

Another week trying to just get on while coping with the depression and anxiety, so not much has been happening.  I’ve had a couple of days in a row now where I can eat without having to immediately dash off to the loo, so that’s a big win… but I’m still not able to eat very much.

I saw my helpful psychologist on Thursday and had two anxiety attacks (complete with ‘oh no, here come the tummy wobbles’) while I was in here office – which was actually incredibly useful, because we were able to work on tools to cope with them right there and then.  Labeling what was going on so the mind gets back in control instead of panicky emotions running riot helps; remembering to breathe (sounds simple but the first thing I tend to do when I panic is hold my breath!); and reminding myself that this isn’t going to last forever – all these are useful things when I’m feeling really rotten and anxious.  I’ve been feeling a lot better since practicing those things.

The weather has been nice but today has turned cooler. Connie took me for a walk in Queen’s Park the other day to see some of the flowers planted for the Carnival of Flowers but she wasn’t stopping to let me photograph them!

Come ON, Mum!
Ornamental Kale

(Photos taken on the run with my phone as Connie CHARGED around the park!)

I’ve managed to pick up a sore throat and a bit of a snuffle.  So I’m off to have some hot water with lemon and ginger.  Uni starts again this week, but we haven’t heard back yet about our marks for the 2000 word story – we should know by the middle of the week, the lecturer says. Then it’s a race to the finish when all work has to be handed in by October 26.  I think I’m as up-to-date as I can be with the other work for the subject, and I’m not going to stress myself out about it, not when I’m already trying to recover from this bout of anxiety and depression! I am better than I was even this time last week, though.

What I did on Friday…

Saturday.  Recovery day.  Friday is my big day at uni, where I go to my creative writing class and my mind gets completely overwhelmed and  – ugh.  I just get wiped out. It’s wonderful class and I’m excited to be doing it, I’m learning heaps, but it’s so much at once.

It starts with getting up earlier than usual so that I can get to uni in good time. Apart from the couple of weeks when I couldn’t drive because of the shakes (going away now that I’m just about weaned off the Saphrïs, thank goodness) I drive myself out there, and I’m not really used to morning traffic – even Toowoomba style ‘rush hour’ is a little bit anxiety-making for me, since I’m just not used to stop-start driving (and especially at the moment when the depression/ anxiety is kicking in, I get worried – oh, rapid cycling bipolar, how I love it – NOT!).

Once I’m at uni I have time to have a half strength skinny latte before class.  This gives me time to settle down,  open up a new document on my computer, and generally get myself set up before the 9 o’clock start.

Then the lecturer arrives and it’s BAM, full on,until he calls a break at about ten thirty.  He brings so much energy to the room, deliberately making the room a safe place to ask questions, but keeping the pace fast and fun so that we are learning HEAPS about the writing process and whichever topic we’re up to this week. I take lots of notes on my computer and listen hard.   We get a quick loo break and then steam on again, usually with group work or exercises,  full pace until we finish at twelve, by which time I am wrung out – my brain is full.

Yesterday I knew was going to be stressful because we were warned the week before to bring hard copies of our 2000 word stories, to share in groups. We did a process called ‘creative development’ where you read your story to a small group, who provide critique, but you’ve asked for some direction beforehand – in my case, I’m still not sure that the end of my story is working, so I wanted some feedback on that.  The idea is that the group expands your thinking, they might throw in some ideas that you wouldn’t have come up with on your own.

And if I had been more confident yesterday I think I would have enjoyed it more. As it was, I don’t think I have EVER been more nervous reading something in my entire life.  My hands were shaking, my knees were knocking, my voice was tremulous, my nose was running, my eyes watered.  I was a mess and instead of it getting easier the further I read, the more difficult it became.  ARRRRGH! The other five students in the group noticed but were kind, and had useful comments to make about the story. At the end of the session when the lecturer came around and asked for comments I said that it had been exceptionally nerve-wracking because it wasn’t just reading something to ‘people’, it was reading work to other WRITERS.

After we finish our group work, the lecturer usually has some sort of video thing to wind down, tries to leave us with something funny, something that reinforces the points that he’s spent the lecture making. The whole structure of the three hours is really carefully thought out so the class gets the best use of the time, but it is full on and really tiring for me.  I love it – I have never enjoyed a class so much, and it’s very different from the stressful time I had last semester – but it’s exhausting.

After class I usually go to lunch with some friends from the class.  We kept talking about how cool the things we’d done in class were, and one of the girls who hadn’t felt able to read her story during class time was able to share it around the lunch table once we’d all eaten, which was amazing – so we had our own Creative Development session for her there.  She was just about as nervous as I had been, which was oddly reassuring for me – I didn’t feel like such an idiot for being apprehensive.  And I felt like I was able to give her some useful feedback.

Then off to my small scrapbooking group – not because I was going to work on anything (although I do have a small project to start on, a birthday card for my brother) but because I owed them a visit and they are dear friends, and I wanted to see them.  I called to check it was still okay to come, since by now it was after two o’clock, and the hostess said ‘please come.’  Only problem was I missed the turn, got lost, and spent another  fifteen minutes trying to find my way back to where I should have been – I don’t know that side of town – arrgh!  A cup of tea and a chat, a sit down for about an hour, and then back home in the almost-rush traffic again and I had to put myself to bed.

I was quite shaky and anxious.  I know part of this is the depression, I know normally I can manage this level of driving, but just at that moment I needed to lie down under the quilts and be warm and not do very much.  And it was my Dad’s birthday yesterday – HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD! So I gave him a quick call before I fell into bed. I did manage to call the dentist and get an appointment about a sore tooth, so that was at least one more thing taken care of, but – phew, I had had enough of Friday.

The new $1 nepenthes plant shows promise already

Meanwhile, Mr B had had a very productive day – he’d used the pots and potting mix we’d bought on Thursday and split up some of his carnivorous plants; he’d re-potted some succulents that were well overdue; planted out some nigellas that needed to be moved from pots into the ground, and sundry other garden jobs. I’m going to steal some off his photos from his blog, since he took some marvellous pics.

One of the sundews

So that’s about it. We have a two week semester break now, but I have homework – editing the 2000 word story – and by editing, the assignment is really re-writing the whole thing again to try and make it better. I think I’m going to try it in first person instead of third person, that sort of thing.  And I’m meeting with two of the girls from class on Tuesday to see how we’re all going with that.

Oh, and I mustn’t forget – tomorrow a group of us are going to see the lecturer’s latest play performed at the local theatre – we all decided to go to the Sunday matinee. Looking forward to that.


Sunday again

So it’s Sunday again, I might as well find some things to post about.  Here we go:

Things that I am enjoying now: Mary Beard’ s TV series ‘Meet the Romans’ – the last one of this 3 part series is on SBS TV tonight, and she makes me wish that I had time to do a classics degree. Which I don’t. And without the wherewithal to travel to Britain and Italy, it’s not really worth it, but she makes it seem so brilliant.

Mr B has been enjoying watching it too. He was actually subjected to some Latin in his education, so sometimes he gets to play along as Mary translates.

I am enjoying being on the lower dose of Saphrís again because my tongue doesn’t feel quite so burnt.  I do worry a bit about going to the next lower dose because I am scared of dipping into depression again, especially at the moment while this hassle with the neighbours is going on. It’s very easy to get sick and isolated again and I don’t want that.

I’m enjoying the feeling of having my assignment for CWR1000 finished and handed in. It was 99% written but it took me until Thursday afternoon (it was due Friday midnight) to find the right ending but when I did, the whole thing fell into place. Those last three sentences made it work.   At least I think they did –we’ll see what the lecturer thinks.  Poor man has 110 students, each handing in one of these 2000 word stories to mark. I do not envy him his job.  Meanwhile, our next assignment is to edit these pieces, and we have been given some instructions on how to do so. We have one more week of lectures then a two week break, during which I need to find a new story to write so I don’t go mad with nothing to do. (There is always, always the front room, which I am determined to get to. Soon.  My study-buddy and I have agreed to meet during the break to work on our stories so we keep each other going, and I think this will be a Good Thing.)

I am enjoying seeing Mr B writing his story, too.  He says he is encouraged by my uni work (and I hope as I learn how this editing process works I will be able to pass on some knowledge to him).  I really admire his determination to get his book written, he also struggles every day with back pain and neurological pain from his accident, so his writing time is limited, but he is determined to at least get some words down most days.  As my Dad says, any day you’re vertical and ventilated is a win. Some days that’s about all we manage, and we have to accept that.  I have to remind myself of that.

I am enjoying re-reading the Harry Potter books.  I’ve been reading other things in between, so this is a slow project, but I’m halfway through book three (Prisoner of Azkaban) and the storytelling is wonderful.  Will I bother with the new ‘for grown ups’ JK Rowling book? Probably not, unless and until I see it remaindered for a very cheap price or on the new releases shelf at the library.  But the Harry Potter stories are just the thing for me to be reading to get to sleep at night right now – I don’t have to think too much, and I still get to admire how cleverly she’s plotted and how simply she’s used language.

I’ve been reading more Ray Bradbury stories too, but they’re not as good for getting to sleep – short stories never work as well for getting to sleep because they STOP, dammit! And also because Ray Bradbury is possibly the writer I admire most, so I find myself really concentrating when I’m reading his stuff. Not that I don’t enjoy the stories, I do, but I read them differently now.  Unless they’re ones I know really well.

The Formula 1 race is at Monza tonight.  Not quite as fun a circuit as Spa, but still usually worth watching. I’m a bit worn out so we’ll see how I go, I might not last race distance.

Things I am not enjoying right now: the ongoing harassment from the next door neighbours.  We’ve had to call the police numerous times. Sometimes we then have to call the police back to cancel the complaint, because they can only act if the noise is still happening when they arrive.  (I find this embarrassing and upsetting, both the initial call and then the call to cancel.)  The noise from next door resonates from their sub-woofer stereo through both wooden houses, since they are built so very close together, and you would think after the police showing up so many times the neighbours would get a clue that it’s an issue but no, they don’t. Living with the DOOMF DOOMF DOOMF is like being dragged back and forth over a hacksaw blade (as Mr B put it last night. I cannot think of a more eloquent phrase to describe it.)  I just want a quiet life, is that too much to want? Really?

Last night I let it get to me to the point where it made me sick. My body gave in and did that ever so charming panic attack instant dysentery trick (noooiice) and afterwards all I could do was lie on the bed and cry, even thought that wasn’t what I wanted. I took a lorãzepam because there comes a point where I do not want to sit and observe my feelings, even if that is the right, proper, ACT therapeutic thing that my psychologist would like me to do – I just have had enough of being dragged back and forth and it’s after 11 at night and all I want is some peace.

Today it started up again and I had had enough. I got dressed and took the dog out in the car to the park.  We no longer have an off leash area in Queens Park (which means that entire area of the park was deserted – well done, Toowoomba Council – Sunday arvos used to see happy families frolicking with their pets there, but no more) but Connie was quite happy to trot around the flowers and paths of the plantings which are almost ready for the official start of the Carnivore of Fowls – excuse me, Carnival of Flowers – and then sit on the grass with me.  I probably walked a little bit further than was good for me (I really need to be building up gradually, not doing 30 minutes of walking at once, my hips went clunk CLUNK clunk CLUNK) but provided I can manage the pain tonight it will have been worth it.  Even sitting amongst screeching children was better than being home and hearing the DOOMF DOOMF DOOMF. Plus, I got some Vitamin D, which is a Good Thing, and Connie got some new smells, which probably helps her brain too.  It’s paralysis tick season so she will be gone over with the very fine comb tonight – lots of growls but lots of treats, and yes, we do check between her toes, in her ears and underneath the tick collar as well.  Can’t be too careful.

That’s about it from here this week.  The egg carton foam mattress topper is still making a big difference – I am getting up to 4 hours of unbroken sleep some nights.  I was supposed to go to a fashion show thingy at a shop today but was too down to go. There will be other times when they have discounts, so it won’t matter too much.   We’re supposed to get another cold night here – back down to 6 degrees – brrrrr – but the days are sunny.  Nearly time to get Connie out of her winter coat (and you know as soon as we make the decision to do that and get her clipped, we’ll get a week of really cold nights!)


I just walked up and down our back yard a few times, trying to work out the terrible clunk that happens in my hip when I walk if I’ve been sitting for too long. Step clunk, step clunk, step clunk.  I see the chiropractor on Tuesday and she helps, but I know one of the things I have to do is gradually build up the amount of time and distance I can walk again – I’ve let myself get stuck in a pattern of sitting too much. The weekends are worst: weekdays I usually have something I can schedule, whether university or doctor’s appointments, or just getting out to the supermarket; but Saturdays and Sundays drag on forever and I find myself stuck and in pain.

I’m not sure if it’s the medication for the bípolar or if the pain is causing it, but I’ve been getting the shakes.  I didn’t feel well enough to drive myself to class on Friday, so poor Mr Beloved got stuck doing the trip out to uni and back twice. Then I had to go to a birthday do for one of the scrapping girls – normally something I enjoy, but I was soooo tired. I had slept so poorly on our old mattress on Thursday night that I was seriously weepy about it, so when the scrapping girls mentioned that the egg carton foam topper thingummy had worked for them I thought it was worth trying – after all, there was no way we could afford a new mattress (about $1000) but we might be able to swing a new topper thing (a bit over $100).

Mr Beloved drove back to the other side of town again and we went home via Clark Rubber.  $125 later for this (which is properly called, I see, a ‘convoluted foam mattress overlay’) and $42 for the half roll version of this, which seems to be helping in the lounge chair – my neck is less sore, anyway) and so far we seem to be sleeping better. By which I mean that I have had at least one period of four hours of unbroken sleep, which is something of a miracle: I can’t remember that last time I’ve had even that long without interruption. (Broken sleep is something of a feature of fibromyalgìa, apparently opinion is divided over whether it’s a cause or a symptom – in any case, it SUX. Add in breakthrough pain, a bit of apnoea that the CPAP mask doesn’t entirely catch, and – well, it’s a wonder I’m not more tired than I am.)

Today has been accompanied by the interminable drone and beep beep beep beep of big diggers reversing as the railways work on some project just over the creek that involves moving piles of gravel from one place to another.  It’s been going on since about eight this morning and it’s after four as I’m writing this.  Lovely sunny day for it.

Not the digger across the creek.

Tomorrow we see the Very Helpful Psychiatrist again. I’m hoping that she will let me reduce the amount of Saphrïs that I’m taking (it burns my tongue, apart from anything else). Mr Beloved’s new spectacles are ready, so he gets to collect those once he’s had one more eye test that for some reason couldn’t be done while he was there last time.

In university news, I’m still working on my story that’s due on Friday. It’s getting to the stage now where I’m finding it really difficult to work out what to do to fix it before submitting it.  It’s just got to a point where I can’t look at it any more and see what needs to change.

That’s about all the news from here. It was freezing cold last night, 2.8 degrees according to the official record. Supposed to be about the same tonight.  Happy Spring, Happy Father’s Day, make sure to bring in the carnivorous plants in out of the frost. At least  Formula 1 is back from their summer break and we get to watch them tear madly around Spa tonight – one of the few older circuits left, seven kms of lovely twisty hilly racing. VROOOOOOOOOOM!

So. Tired.

Ugh. So I just LOVE having rapid cycling Bipolar Disorder.  Yep.  Love it.  Because now I have moved into what the psychiatrist calls a ‘mixed state’ which translates as ‘don’t know if I’m going to be ok or burst into weepy tears’, and it’s very NOT fun. It’s the worst part of Bipolar, the mixed state, because it’s both mania and depression at once. It’s the most dangerous state.  But I’m okay. Sort of. Just really tired and scattered.

And I’m so damn sick of my brain waking me up with useless chatter at 2:30 in the morning.  I just want to sleep through the night so I can get up and concentrate on my school work like NORMAL people, you know? And get to classes and appointments without looking like a zombie and wanting to come home and collapse across the bed without even taking time to take my clothes or makeup off afterwards (it’s not pretty waking up crushed and with the remnants of mascara ground into the pillow.)

So I get to try some new med1cation tonight, yippee. The Very Helpful Psychiatrist reckons it will make me sleep.  It’s a short term fix only. I said I don’t care I JUST WANT TO SLEEP AND BE NORMAL.  The doctor asked if I wanted to go to hospital ‘just for a little while’ but I don’t want to.  It’s such a hassle.  I want my own stuff around me and my own ice packs and my own uncomfortable bed, not to mention Mr Beloved and Connie… I worry that if this med1cation doesn’t work that I might have to go but I’ll fight it all the damn way.


The lovely vet came over to see Connie today -we have to buy a rug for the bedroom floor and build some stairs for the bed, because at 8 years old poor Connie’s knees and back are starting to wear out from her constant exuberant jumping from the bed to the slippery floorboards and back up again.  She also gets to have a yummy fishy powder supplement to help ease her joints – and if that’s not helping fast enough she goes back onto some meloxicam, poor little mite.

Tomorrow Mr Beloved gets his eyes tested and new spectacles organised; I did that last week and so should be picking up my new specs this week.

The black-ish pair is actually much darker in real life, if I remember rightly. Not so tortoiseshell-y. The red pair are that red. (Turned out my vision problems are mostly because I’m tired and stressed.  What a surprise, right? At least it’s not the start of a brain tumor or anything horrible. Except for the persistent floater in my left eye which is just a damn floater and there is nothing to be done about it.)

And here’s a compare and contrast for you:

On the left: at the end of February;  on the right (in winter plumage, but having lost some weight) at the end of July. Is university good for me? Perhaps.

I finally got an official result from last semester: I got an HD. High Distinction.


And my first piece of assessable work for this unit is due on the 13th and I already feel like I’m falling behind so if you’ll excuse me… I have some writing to do. And I have to read the first Harry Potter book again before Friday as homework and look at the way it is structured (yep, really.)

First Day of Big School

And with it, the Traditional First Day of School photo:

Off to big school!

(come on – your family did this too, right?  School uniform and bags, out the front of the house?)

This was truly the best of the photos – I was grumpy this morning, oh dear! Not least because I had got myself all nicely settled last evening at around 9:15 pm for an early night when with an almighty VOOOOMP fzzzzttt – the power went off.


Third time in three weeks. And no power means no CPAP machine means NO SLEEP.


Fortunately the power came back on about 1:15am, so I got to sleep not long after.  But I was grumpy.

Still, we got out to the university all right  –  it takes 15 minutes at that time of morning, not bad at all.  That was a bit of an indulgence, having Mr Beloved drive me – normally I’ll be catching the bus. Which takes nearly an hour, so I’ll have lots of time to read or catch up on podcasts.

Keeping in mind Dad’s admonitions on the phone last night to “not cry when Mr Beloved drops you off, just go inside, get out your crayons, and play with the other kids” (the same advice he gave me for kindergarten, I’m sure!) I found the lecture theatre, hauled myself to a seat up near the top where my need to get up and walk and stretch shouldn’t get in anyone’s way, and was immediately intimidated by how damn YOUNG all my classmates were.  There’s a couple of other “mouldy oldies” but the majority are kids.  Eeek!

I just have to keep reminding myself that when I was 18, I thought *I* knew everything, too.

The first lecture was mainly orientation and introduction – much of the course will be conducted online (whether you’re an on-campus or external student) so the lecturer went over how important it was to know where all the online stuff lived.  Right. Gotcha.

I’m still waiting (ARRRGH!  Is it here yet?  How about now?  Could you just check, in case you forget to put the parcel card in my post office box? No?  ARRRRRGH!!!) for my text book.   And no, the town library doesn’t have a copy and all the uni library copies are unavailable… if my copy hasn’t arrived by Saturday I’ll try the uni library then.

And now I am being naughty and looking at pictures of the Oscar frocks, because I am tired and there’s only so much communications theory my brain can deal with in one day.

Group therapy tomorrow, then first tute on Thursday.

Adventures in University Work – and it’s not even Week 1 yet

It took me over two hours to write a short three paragraph response to the”Introduction” thread for my university subject.  To be fair, there was a three part question that needed to be answered, and it involved choosing one or several of 14 headings at the top of a complicated diagram of “the genealogy of communication”, and the two hours included thinking time… but… *HEADDESK*!!

But I’ve now completed as much of the online work for Week 1 as I can until my other textbook gets here. WHICH HAD BETTER BE SOON.  Ah well, next time I’ll know to choose my subject further in advance and order the textbook earlier.  Yeah yeah, I know you probably don’t reaaaally do much in week 1, and I know I’m supposed to be all “P’s get degrees” BUT I’m trying to get a leeeetle bit ahead where I can just in case, you know?

First lecture is on Tuesday morning.  I hope I can sleep on Monday night.

I am nervous about being able to take notes  – but because the course is offered both on campus and as an external/distance subject, I should have access to recorded versions of the lectures.  My fibromyalgia has flared up again, and I can’t hold a pen to write for much more than signing my name (and even that’s a bit dodgy.)  Typing’s not too bad so long as I rest fairly often.

The university offers a LOT of disability support – it’s one of the reasons I decided to enroll at USQ.  And I have my shiny new laptop, which poor Mr Beloved spent 10+ hours getting set up and making backup disks in case of catastrophic failure, and getting my desk all organised with the laptop at the right height, additional keyboard below and a second screen for ease of reading texts at home – everybody say “awwwwwwww!” – isn’t he the best!

My (Summer) at home desk

[as always, clicky for biggy].  As you can see, a phone book brings the extra monitor to just the right height, and the hi-tech laptop stand is re-purposed floorboards from a long-demolished Canberra govvie house.  (Nothing in the shed is JUNK. It’s all  waiting for a use… well, most of it.  I admit some of my stuff needs to go.  Ahem.)

Shiny New Computer also came with Kindle for PCS already installed. Wheee!  I am rapidly learning to do more screen-based reading – and since my assignments for uni can be submitted electronically (and get marked more quickly if I do so) I’m going to have to get used to not even printing out a copy to proof read. Another tree (and more expensive ink) saved each time…

And now, as usual, I have to go eat.  I forget when I’m down here on the computer until I get reallllllly hungry.  So nice to have that change now – I’m very VERY glad to be off the horrible Ser0quel, but I still need to up the d0se of the new med1cation – which I can’t do until I see the Nice Psychiatrist on the 5th of March.

And did I mention it’s VERY wet here again? I am really considering that a clothes dryer is no longer a luxury but a necessity – unless we want to appear in public in bedsheets.

Busy busy busy busy!

Oh my goodness so busy and I’m not even into Orientation week yet!  That starts tomorrow although honestly, I’m TOO OLD for most of the O week kerfuffle – I’m going out tomorrow to get my student ID card and that’s about it.

I’ve been able to log on to my courses already (ah, the wonders of the steam age!) and changed my mind about what I was enrolling in and how may courses I should attempt  – arrrgh!  After much to-ing and fro-ing and general messing about – ONE.

One course this semester – it has 4 contact hours, and that doesn’t sound like very much, but combine that with the one day a week at group therapy and the other medical appointments and the expectation of at least 10 hours of private study to back up those 4 contact hours and  – well, that’s more than enough for my poor muddled brain.

(If you’re interested, it’s one of the courses in the recommended enrolment pattern for the Writing And Society major, CMS1010 “Introduction to Communication Studies”.  Yep.  More semiotics.)

I’ve already booked in for a “Super Library Session” on “Finding Information for Your Assignments” – anything that will give me a leg up!  Things have changed so DRASTICALLY since I last studied at this level – the sheer volume of online information, and referencing – sheesh, I have to know how to reference podcasts!  (I do know how, in the university approved Harvard referencing style. I looked it up.)

darn this newfangled technology!

So this week I have to buy a new laptop to take to uni (Or Big School, as we are jokingly referring to it in family conversations) and a bag to lug that around in.  Textbooks are on the way from, where they were $29 each instead of $39.90 each at the University bookshop (really, I can’t support the local shop when their price is so much higher – I can’t afford principles on the pension we live on!).

A visit to The Government Department Which Controls Our Lives is also on this list of chores this week *shudder* – just having to interact with them is stressful, even when they’re helping us.

And that’s about all the news that’s fit to print – except to mention that our poor old cat is failing.  She’s 15 and is starting to forget that she needs to leave the building before she goes to the loo… oh dear.  She’s been a lovely cat, and as soon as she shows any signs of suffering we’ll make sure they stop peacefully, but it’s going to be very hard to let her go.  She came to Mr Beloved as a tiny scrap of a kitten and they have been inseparable ever since – I think they have probably only spent a handful of nights apart.

Poor Connie will have to get used to being the only 4 footed furry for a while when Kit Tern goes…