365 Project Update

I have finally been able to update the prior 2018 365 Project Months so the pictures that are in the video are below the video on the post. For some reason Final Cut wouldn’t allow some of my black and white pictures for previous months, but I figured out how to fix it, so some of the video pics aren’t the BW versions. That shouldn’t be an issue this part forward.

If you want to access the entire 365 project, just click on this link or the link on the header above called “365 Project

For the prior three months you can click these links:

I am going to fill in the missing 365 months/years in the archive with what I have, and all of the prior archives will get photo galleries of what images I do have.

Small Regrets

My anxiety exhibits a lot of time as small regrets, and is generally not world ending. These things tend to bother me a lot over time. I am not sure if that is normal or not, but it sometimes hits me hard, like it did a few minutes ago.

My dad has never known much about his father’s family, except that his father was supposed to be a German tank officer POW from World War II. The other rumor is it might have been a child of rape/incest, but that wasn’t the one referenced by a lot of people in my not so close extended family. The stuff I heard growing up means I still lean towards the first possibility more then the second, but there is no way to really know.

This is when they started advertising doing a DNA test for ancestry.com’s stuff that my dad became very interested in having it done. He brought it up to me that maybe someday I might be able to help him get that Now my parents were super poor (only had social security, and between them they only earned $995 a month, including food stamps) so they wouldn’t ever be able to afford it.

I told them I would get it for them. I saw my dad really wanted to know about where he is from (plus he always loved history stuff).

I originally was going to get it in the fall of 2015, but we were a bit tight on money so I pushed it off (they had a lot of money problems we needed to fix, like a $400 medicine bill). My dad was 67 years old, while in poor health it hadn’t changed in years so I figured I would look into that around Xmas/his birthday.

Then we came up to Christmas and I got him some old Roman coins, which he loved, and I wished I knew how inexpensive collecting coins like that was and how much he would have liked it. I would have bought him stuff like that years ago. However, the cost of buying my four nephew and nieces presents resulted in us spending way more then we should. This is in addition to my parents asked us to spend most of what we would spend on them on the kids as well so they could give the kids those presents.

So I figured I would pick it up for his 68th birthday in March. Sadly his health failed at the beginning of February and he was gone by February 11th.

He was never upset we didn’t get it for him then. He knew we were tight on money and if we got it for his birthday that would be great, if we didn’t that was find to. I also know he would never hold it against me now. Logic doesn’t seem to matter though since it really bothers me sometimes, especially when I get those DNAAncestry emails. 

I realize it isn’t rational to be upset by this. He wasn’t upset, why should I. However, that doesn’t change the fact it sometimes really bothers me a lot that I wasn’t able to get him that. This is sadly not unusual, I regret not doing more for them even now, almost 2 years after both my parents are gone.

I know we spent a lot of money and time taking care of my parents, more so then I think I have ever seen anyone else do. They were always thankful and they were always taken care of, but for some reason it never changes how much it makes me upset when I think about how much more they needed and I wasn’t able to supply it.

Published in LGBTQ Queer Culture Journal MELK

It is official, I am a fully published author now. Not that I will ever make any great deal of money, it is kind of cool that some part of me will remain after I am gone. However, I need to note that this would not have been possible without my hubby Wolsey. He helped me with back end of writing (he is an awesome editor) then of course the people at MELK were great as well!


This isn’t the book deal we are waiting on for “Accidentally Gay”, that is supposed to come out in the next month or two, this is a short writing that a Norwegian Queer Culture Journal that publishes quarterly. They asked me to write a story about Wolsey and I. I was more than happy to. It was easy to do. Now after AG comes out maybe I can get some of my fiction or history stuff out there.

https://www.melkmag.com/melk-no-6.html

General catch up for 3-17-18

I have been really quiet lately other then some reviews and a dream post, but that is because life is incredibly hectic at the moment. I figured I owed some explanation and a catchup for everyone.

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Wolsey left his job at the DoD and is working at my old place, Washington State State Auditor’s Office. I am incredibly excited for him. It is a great job and he will do awesome. I am only a little sad at him leaving, we have worked together again here for two and a half years, I love working with him. Now he is onto a job with slightly different time and not near me.

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This is me right now

I have my foot back in a cast. My foot is still broken from October and I go back in on April 2nd to see if I need surgery. I suspect that will be a yes. Until then I can’t drive in to work anymore so I am on medical telework. Wolsey is no longer working there so he can’t drive me, and my foot doesn’t fit with its boot in his car or definitely not my manual transmission driven car.

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Gaming is going to start back up. Due to all of the stuff going on with work I had to travel to Atlanta and our D&D game has been cancelled. This Sunday is the first time in six weeks we have gotten to play. I am looking forward to running it.

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I have a new series on my Things You Should Know Youtube channel called “The Great War”. Its like my Civil War series but for World War I instead of the Civil War. I am pretty excited. I have pre-made videos 6-10 weeks ahead for both series, this gives me a breather in case I get hurt again, go out because of surgery, etc.

TYSK
My History Youtube Channel Click to go to it.

I have started my Udemy blender course for 3d art, but everything else has kind of slowed it down. This week I hope to get back to it. There are a few other things, but the timing isn’t right to chat about them. I hope everything is going well for all of you, and I believe I am back to posting regularly about my life on top of the reviews!

 

Travel

A lot of people don’t understand why I am not satisfied with my current employment. I get paid more than I probably ever will again, for a job that is much easier than any job I will have in the future. I have many reasons I am not satisfied, one of the reasons for my dislike is the travel.

I realize it is normal for a lot of couples to spend time away from each other. I hear from some people “that’s healthy”, but not for me. Before this job, over 22 years of marriage I had only been away from my husband for maybe three days at most. Since I started my job in 2014 however I have spent 4+ weeks a year away from him, the pay, the ease of job isn’t worth it to me.

It is probably partially because my parents didn’t spend time away from each other. The only time they did was when it was forced by outside forces (primarily if my dad had to do any time in jail). Other than that, in their entire 46-year marriage they never spent a day away from each other.

I hate being away from him, I would rather work in fast food, living paycheck to paycheck then to spend a night from him. Eventually I will be in a position to change this situation. I won’t wait for some “future date” when all my student loans will be paid off, it will be sooner than later, much sooner.

However, for now at least I have to take a flight this morning to Atlanta where I will stay for five days (one weekend day and four weekdays). I will just be counting down the hours until I can come home to him.

Just an update

Well here I am, 2am and awake. I have been fortunate though, lately my insomnia hasn’t been waking me up this early (yesterday I slept until 5:15am which is unheard of) so it is probably a little expected I get some today.

Things are going really well honestly. In gaming I had the most productive group game in years (see the game at https://silkandspices.wordpress.com). We have three new players joining my hubby and Torie. It was a character making session with a bit of role-play, but even so I got more feedback and more submissions from my three new players in one game then I got in years from some of my older players. It felt really nice to be appreciated.

Work is still just work. My hubby might have some good news coming up, we will see. I am very proud of him no matter what. As for my work it is a train wreck (yes we work at the same place). I am watching an audit we are doing just starting to nose dive, although I don’t feel too bad because I have told management repeatedly what the problem is and they don’t want to pursue it, so it isn’t my problem.

I am getting my arm sleeve tattoo worked on, its starting to look really nice. The hubby got his done so he is good to go for now, I still have a few more sessions. This time though I think I am going to go a little slower, only a couple of hours at a time. It is cheaper in the short term, and honestly I just don’t want to sit under the tattoo gun for more then a couple hours at a time.

Brandon put a background around my poor lonely angel.

Personally I am doing ok. Hubby’s surgeries are over and he is recovering so that is a relief. I am starting to work on my own health but that is a bit problematic. Evidently my foot is still fractured and it is officially a Jones Break. Means it may not heal on its own. It has been since October 3, 2017 when I broke it originally, we are going to give it until the end of March and see the orthopedic surgeon again. A boot or cast won’t help so I just have to take it easy.

More health news, I am halfway done with my first crown this year, they have to put the new crown in next week. Then I have a second crown and a bridge to get, with a final touch up of fixing a cracked tooth. Also today I will be going in to have my hearing checked along with the holes in my eardrums (I had tubes put in about 7 months ago, my hearing still sucks) and we will see how that goes.

Finally I am getting a CAT scan for the hernia/stomach problems. Been trying to get that for more then two years. Overall this year is about getting my health back in shape, that way if our job situation changes I can move on healthier.

My anxiety is also doing ok. Obviously I am still suffering from insomnia, but it isn’t as hard as it was last year at this time. the post-holidays (actually pre-holidays as well) is always  more difficult and my dad passing’s anniversary is pretty soon. All that being said though the hubby’s health has improved as has my anxiety because of it.

The rest of life is a bit slow and steady. I am reading (or listening to audiobooks) a lot, working on gaming stuff and just enjoying being with my husband. Oh and realizing how old I am getting when half my post is health issues. Is this what my future holds? LOL.

 

Certification Alphabet Soup

My actual profession is an auditor. Right now I audit large defense contractors for the D0D. Before that I audited state and local governmental agencies, employers who are “underground” (meaning they are working off the books) and was a senior accounting analyst for a large county.

None of these jobs ever require certification. Many of the jobs require years of experience, but getting an actual accounting certification isn’t necessary and I have never seen where it actually means that person is more capable then someone without a certification.

However, that being said it sometimes looks better to have certifications, even if they don’t actually mean you are skilled enough or even smart enough to do the job. So I have been looking over my CPA study materials, trying to figure out if I want to go this direction, or get a CIA (Certified Internal Auditor) and CFE (Certified Fraud Examiner). The CPA is a lot of study, a lot of tests and can take up to 18 months. The CFE and CIA could both be taken in that time, with a lot of time to spare.

CPA has most flexible overall (but I don’t plan on ever working for a CPA firm where its the most use) but this is a better $$ option. Most people when they hear the title CPA they have an idea that you are smart, can do anything for them accounting wise, etc. The fact is I can do that right now professionally without the certification and would charge a lot less is a pretty funny side note.

However, I don’t like the environment of most accounting firms, or other employers that look for CPAs. It pays really really well, but its like this little slice of hell. Filled with more politics and bootlicking then actually doing your job. Also it is mostly cubicle work. I hate both of those things, and I have Oppositional Defiance Disorder, meaning I don’t respond well to authority like figures. However, I will admit that I do like the flexibility in where I can work and the money. That wars with the fact that I hate routine, I dislike having to sit beside most people for long periods (my husband is the single exception to this rule), and I get bored with accounting in general.

On the other hand the CFE is part of what I love doing (auditing) but a lot more niche. It is a lot more interesting. I don’t like the day to day minutia of accounting, the cycles and the getting into the deep details. I prefer digging into accounting, finding if there are problems and basically telling people where they are wrong.

Auditing relies on a person being able to be assertive, able to handle people hating them, being quick on your feet, and most importantly flexible. I am not assertive in most parts of my life, but auditing is a definite exception. In addition I need to have things happening quickly, and I love being flexible. Most importantly I have no problem with conflict, which is a lot of auditing. People push back, yell at you, throw cans of pop at you or threaten you with a pistol (I have had those all happen to me).

That means the CFE is awesome. It just reinforces my credentials in auditing and would expose me to more jobs that are in that direction. The problem is like I said earlier, a lot more niche. Then again my whole professional history is pretty niche (and I do get head hunters after me several times a year for that niche). However, it is still limiting to where I can go and who I can work for.

Since Auditing is what I like, the CIA I will get eventually no matter what so that is just a matter of putting it in order. It will add to my credentials no matter what I do and it is fairly straight forward.

I guess the hard part for considering the CPA for me is I have audited dozens of CPAs and they are absolutely no smarter or more knowledgeable then accountants without that classification. Its purely to charge your customer more. When I was in school and asked why the “5th year rule” was enforced, the idea that a CPA needs a 5th year of college, and my teacher who helped with the CPA test design was specific and said it was to limit the pool of CPA candidates so they could charge more.

I wasn’t really shocked by that, but it really goes at the heart of my experience with the CPA. Of course there are exceptions, but the general rule that has been backed up by ten years of auditing CPAs fits right in there. I do have to say that they get really uppity when a non-CPA audits them, nails them and they get caught being wrong (sometimes doing it on purpose, sometimes they are idiots).

I will play around with the CPA study materials, but the 600+ hours of study needed to take it might be beyond what I want to do. I guess I will just talk to the hubby and get feedback.

2018 New Years Day thoughts

It’s funny, I posted about how I woke up anxious last year on January 1st because I hadn’t heard from my parents as they had passed that year. It was the first time in 45 years that they hadn’t said Happy New Year to me, 25 of which was phone calls right around midnight.

I didn’t think it would happen again, but it did. This morning I woke up, the second New Years since they were gone, and worried for a few moments that they weren’t ok since I hadn’t heard from them. Even stone cold drunk they would call me.

Then I laid in bed for about an hour thinking about them. I know they would be proud of the hubby and I, especially all the surgeries he went through. I don’t think I have even really tried dealing with them being gone. I don’t know how to start it. I do know it bothered me laying in the dark, listening to my husband snore and wishing desperately like a ten year old again that they would call me one more time.

Maybe this year I need to actually work on that. Although I do want to say that this year is looking far better than last year. W’s surgeries are all done, all requirement to stay at this job are satisfied. By the end of this year we will have left this soul crushing job and moved out of this people crushing place and maybe actually get back to being us.

I do war about the job thing. This is probably the most money I will make in my life. The job is super easy to do skill wise. It would pay W’s and myself’s 125k in student loans within four years (not counting the 25k in short term debt this year). The problem being is this job is a complete scam and the people in it are incredibly toxic. I don’t feel any pride in going to work, and over the months I just watch more and more bullshit and it makes me angrier every time. This doesn’t even count that I dislike working for Trump’s administration and the rights they are rolling back on anyone who isn’t a cisgender, heterosexual white male.

I have a lot to talk about with work, and I think I am going to start doing it this year (probably later this month). So for now I am going to look forward to the fact that things are moving forward. My husband is healthy. I am fairly healthy and will be taking steps to address other factors. Most importantly I am going to celebrate the fact that we never have to worry about food being in our fridge or the ability to buy what we need, when we need right now in our lives. This is a first in our lives together (and a first in my 46 year long life ever).

Happy New Year to everyone, may 2018 surpass anything else you have in joy and happiness!

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Winter 2017 PHX Surgery Trip Day 2-4

The last three days were a little stressful, but mostly unassuming. First let’s cover our Ghost cat status. Torie was kind enough to feed him. Here are the first two days of feeding pictures:

The hubby and I went to his final pre-op appointment on Tuesday, where we waited for the doc to get caught up. Finally we met, talked and things looked good for the surgery.

We then went to the surgical center, where he would stay a day before being released. Once again we waited, and about an hour after surgery was supposed to start our doc arrived for that (are you seeing a pattern yet). Hubby was incredibly happy to get it started.

His usually happiness symbol.

The day ended with the hubby getting out of surgery, being rolled back to his room and resulted in me visiting with him for a few hours before going back to the hotel room.

They made him order dinner right after surgery so he got me to help.

I arrived early (after having a great waffle breakfast at my La Quinta hotel) and prepared for the hubby to be released. His initial schedule was somewhere between 10-11am. We eventually checked him out at 5:30pm (see that pattern) and this was without even seeing the doc. We were told to check with the office on Friday for when they will want to see hubby to pull his drain out.

He waited so long to be discharged

We went to bed and finally woke up today (Friday). We went and had a great waffle breakfast which made him very happy. We then moved on to more laying in bed while he heals. We tried getting a hold of the office but found not only were they closed, but their phones were disconnected…

We left a message on the nurse’s separate line and she called back eventually, arranging us an 8:30 am appt on Monday that is right before our flight. Unsatisifying to me, but I will take what we can get.

Just so happy to have the surgery over with, now time for healing.

Finally I had realized I had forgotten my battery I use to charge my iPad/iPhone at the hospital so I picked it up, picked up some Red Robin burgers for the hubby and now here I am sitting in the room letting him heal. So that is it for this report. Stay tuned there will be more updates and I will eventually write a full review of this experience 🙂

 

Winter 2017 PHX Surgery Trip Day 1

Our first day of travel went really well. Our flight was slightly later then normal which means we didn’t leave house until 5:30am, our normal time we go to work. That meant we were doing a bit better on sleep then expected.

We arrived at the airport and went through a busy security checkpoint quickly because the DoD has given us the “pre-check” status so we avoid most of it. I will probably miss that when we eventually leave.

Security line sucked.

Oh, surprise note, the Lyft driver dropped us off at arrivals instead of departures. The departures area had a half of mile of cars waiting to drop off, the arrivals was empty and we went up two escalators and ended up at security ahead of a huge wait. Thank you for that pro-tip Lyft guy.

The flight itself was pretty straightforward. We were surprised at how cheap first class was (we bought tickets six months ahead) and so my legs actually fit and I didn’t feel clausterphobic. We landed in Phoenix and found the temperature was only about 70 degrees and everyone was wearing pants, well of course except for hubby and I. This is summer weather for Seattle so we had shorts and sandals. Some photos from the flight below:

We had some lunch, checked in to our hotel and then went and saw Justice League (spoiler alert, wasn’t as bad as I had worried, there is a review coming). Finally we got home, laid in bed watching Shark Tank (yes, I do that sometimes) and then fell asleep.

On the bus from PHX Airport to the car rental.

 

In reality a pretty low key day, even with travel.