Monday, July 14, 2008

Jay: Here Goes!

I am about to make a backup of everything, purge the original Blogblivion blog, setup WordPress, crossover some recent posts and make sure there’s a prominent pointer to the archived old blog.  Then I’ll crash into bed as I already should have by now.  Tomorrow I can tweak some of the details, in between errands and trying to keep the gas and electricity on at least until the baby turns a year old (not sure why they want to turn it off if I don’t pay or make arrangements by 5:00 tomorrow, considering they already have the info).

If all goes well, very shortly you won’t see this post at all, and then you will, on a different blog in the same location.

It helps to stay awake!  Really, here goes…

02:33 AM | BloggingGeekeryMoneyPermalink

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Jay: Recruiter

So I spent $28 we don’t have for gas to go meet with a recruiter for 15 minutes yesterday, throwing in a stop for Sadie’s birth certificate on the way.  It was kind of an obligatory thing they do because they promise their client companies that they have personally met and screened the prospects.  It mainly consisted of a get to know you slightly better and discuss what want to do.  Which, as I told him, is part of my problem, but the obvious option of project management sounds good to me.  He could get me DBA (database administrator) work with SQL Server if I were more qualified.  That’s a case of probably could, but wouldn’t be what they really want.  Trouble with me is my tremulous “probably could” is probably more capable than half the people who assertively put themselves forth as such.

I have no idea whether he’ll really come up with anything for me, and it’s got to be just one basket.  Today I need to start invoking my plan weeks in the brewing for which now it may be too late, which includes begging for work here and to a mailing list of contacts*, begging for help with the gas & electric bill, and holding a fundraising CotC most of which would also go to the gas & electric so it doesn’t get turned off before I have more income.  All of this was supposed to go hand in hand and happen a while ago, though originally I hadn’t thought of having people send money straight to the utility and the emphasis was one fundraising CotC and hello, need work.

Today I also might want to run to storage for a while.  It’s paid through the 16th, so there are 3 more days on which I can go inventory it and remove stuff before it gets overlocked pending being able to pay for it.  Or clean it out completely and put the stuff somewhere else pending sale of whatever can and should be sold.

Anyway, if the recruiter gets me work, I can expect it to pay in the 60-100k range, sounds like most likely around 80k.  I’ll believe it when I see it, but it’d be nice to be in that kind of turnaround territory.

* I tend to assume most people already know my situation - needing work, if not the about to be homeless part - but recently one of the former colleagues I am closest to, to the point of being in the group of friends I get together with periodically, chastised me because he had no idea.  So apparently I have to advertise heavily.

10:26 AM | BloggingBusinessJob HuntingKidsMassachusettsMoney • (0) CommentsPermalink

Monday, July 07, 2008

Jay: Not the Post I’d Planned

Have to go meet a recruiter today.  The kids are crazy.

Sadie woke crying in wee hours with apparently a sinus headache.  Which happened to Valerie 24 hours before, though she’s prone to headaches and it may not have been sinus.

Henry a little while ago drank a substantial amount of Valerie’s coffee and has gone all puffy and squinty-eyed and a little rashy, but he’s also been miserable, as has Deb. and for that matter me.  People burning?  No!  Something blooming around the corner, smells like maybe honeysuckle, so strong it can be hard to sleep.

So we’re not sure how much is the coffee and how much is that.  The coffee is about 1 part coffee, some sugar and dry creamer, and 5 parts cold water.  He’s had black coffee with sugar before and not blown up, but the non-dairy creamer has dairy in it, along with whatever else, so who knows.  At least it’s not almost pure milk as it would have been before we realized Val had a problem with the milk.

Anyway, I have to go get ready to go to the Stoughton town hall for Sadie’s birth certificate to sign up for RomneyCommunistCare and decriminalize ourselves in the eyes of the state, then the recruiter in Burlington.  And other errands.

01:53 PM | BloggingFood & CookingJob HuntingKidsMassachusettsMedicalMoneyNewsHealth CarePoliticsStupidity • (0) CommentsPermalink

Monday, June 30, 2008

Jay: I Keep Forgetting

That I haven’t posted anything else today.  I’ve thought of it a few times and meant to, but nope, still the same birthday post.  Nothing about needing to examine and update my resume for a recruiter I talked with today.  Nothing about the need to raise money rapidly for one more major hurdle or still risk being being homeless (and we may have two vehicles now, but the car still isn’t as good as the van would have been for that).  No pictures from the ones pending.  Nothing about trying dairy with Henry to see what happens, starting with Deb, then him if he doesn’t react to that.  I think the dairy thing may have been a red herring, between the cheese being histamines and the milk containing strawberry syrup, which is more suspect than it might be since we know he can’t drink any Kool-Aid flavors due to something in them.  We’re also not convinced beyond a doubt about bananas, which also don’t fit the primary issue and which he loves enough to have begged for by name today.  Which doubles as practice of his mastery of the “n” sound.  As in “no.”

All the quickie items have gone elsewhere, where I can post more easily.  And not even all of those there could have been.

Sadly, it feels like it should be 4:00 and I have several hours ahead, so it’s shocking to see it turning 9:00.  The girls are fighting on my office floor, while Henry cheers them on gleefully.  Guess I should break it up, but it’s kind of funny.

11:45 PM | BloggingCarsJob HuntingKidsMedicalMoneyTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Jay: So 250…

Has been my low twice now, which leaves 2 lbs to go to be down 60, and 20 to go to be where I’d be thrilled to call a stable target.

Since this is happening essentially without trying, except that some changes seem to have kicked even the effects of drug cessation metabolism change along harder, I have no idea where it will stop, or that it won’t plunge right on past any goal I might have decided upon partway through.

If 205 was actually a stable wait that maintains itself on the right diet, but which took work to maintain back when my diet was crappier, perhaps that’s where I’ll land.  I’d expect the process to slow down by then, at least.

Obviously it’d be bad if this is medically induced in a bad if not yet obvious way, but I think it’s otherwise.

What’s weird, besides shirts hanging so loosely and such, is things like no longer being able to sleep on my belly as comfortably, and the baby clearly not being as comfortably laying on me to nap as I lean back in my chair.  Which needs to be replaced, as it’s hopelessly broken, and that’s buried under tons of other priorities, like eating and keeping the utilities on and such.  A shame Valerie destroyed my spare desk chairs.

11:51 AM | Food & CookingMedicalMoneyTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Friday, June 27, 2008

Jay: On The Agenda

Herding kids per usual.

Making beans to supplement leftovers.  I love cooking two nights and then having two nights of the leftovers making it easier.

Dealing with bureaucracy.

(Pause for literally hours to do aforementioned herding and post a couple items that were easier or whatnot...)

Nursing my hand that’s too sore to want to use the mouse and isn’t so thrilled about typing.

Work on composing and preparing a bleg, of it can be called that, for work, in context of explaining what we have in mind and why, subject to possible change or serious traditional offers considered, depending how serious and what happens with Deb’s career.

Work on the same basic thing to mass quantities of contacts, some of whom may not know even peripherally about the situation, and many of whom would be well aware my abilities.

The usual dishes and cleaning and organizing.

Work on a more traditional bleg on the possibility there might be any additional sympathy when I explain the next major hurdle we have to get past in order not to be completely screwed.  The PayPal button is still here, in any event, and won’t stop being useful for a long time, or appreciated ever.

Look at the washing machine, which seems to be acting up, and try to find the info for the service plan we paid for, if needed.

Test our electric usage to see if something is draining excess power, including the possibility that something not in our apartment or on our cellar outlet might be tapping it.

Clean the office.  Still.  Again.

Clean the bedroom.

Go through our stuff to purge/segregate/organize for sale more of it.

Run the car before the battery has a chance to fade out again.

Find a plate holder for the front of the car without spending any money, since there is none to spend.  Don’t want to drive it too much with the front plate sitting in on the dashboard.

Backup some pictures.

Reorganize some site hosting stuff.

Post ad info regarding our sites, maybe try to sell more to existing accounts, and pimp that further in any event.

Put together a “back from hiatus” fundraising Carnival of the Capitalists edition, speaking of raising money and advertising.  A couple people donated to us a while back and mentioned it as a thanks or hoping for return of CotC, so it’s partly for them, but also both to let people put their money where their interest is, and help me determine whether that site should remain ad-free or ad-limited, or whether I should load it up or seek sponsorship more vigorously.  In any event, that’s been part of my plan for trying to raise about $3000 in the next six weeks, some of which would be needed no matter how much I can make conventionally.

Update my LinkedIn profile and my resume and extend some of that to other networking-oriented sites.  Update the business site to reflect what I actually intend, until such time as someone makes me a serious enough offer to back off of that.

Probably a slew of other things I’m forgetting or that are trivial or that are implicit.

04:58 PM | BloggingBusinessCarsGeekeryJob HuntingKidsMassachusettsMedicalMoneyTotally Random • (1) CommentsPermalink

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Jay: No Birthdays

For the last time this month, it’s a day with no birthdays to post.  I could have sworn I had one for the 25th, but it’s not in my calendar, so none it is.

This is the first day of what will be Deb’s “permanent” schedule, until next time it changes.  At least from my perspective, since I think Monday through Sunday, while the employer’s week is Saturday through Friday.  Where last week it was Tuesday and Wednesday off, this week and presumably beyond it will be Monday and Tuesday.  Which makes them my prime work days, and days when leaving the house is easiest.  Obviously with a running car the kids fit in, I can go places with all of them, or can get someone to sit while I am able to go if needed.  Part of the reasoning behind two weekdays off instead of at least one weekend day off is that we only have three days to cover during the traditional business week, if I am engaged fully during that at any point, even for short bursts.

Since it’s the first day she goes back after two off, that means it stands to be more… interesting, as the kids have to adjust again.  On the other hand, with hours the same each day, it all works more smoothly than it did with alternating shifts.

Perhaps I can even do something useful today… perhaps even remunerative.  What a concept!

11:29 AM | BirthdaysBusinessKidsMoneyTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Monday, June 23, 2008

Jay: No Birthdays

Another day with no birthdays to mention, and so it gets a placeholder post.  Don’t you feel special?

This is a full working day for me, whatever that may entail, as it’s an off day for Deb.  In effect, we both “work” seven days a week, and let it never be said that taking care of the kids - or house, to the degree the kids allow it - is either “not work” or “woman’s work.” I’d like to think we’re a bit more enlightened than that in 2008.  It is 2008, right?  Yeah.

Some of these posts, and the birthdays, have been pre-posted in a batch, dated for the appropriate time, so I don’t have to get up every single morning and post any birthdays there may be, or feel obligated to post something to keep the blog looking lively.  Presumably there’s been some stuff between the batch posts, but if not, well, it’s something anyway.

10:39 AM | BirthdaysBloggingBusinessKidsMoneyTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Jay: No Birthdays

Another day of no birthdays so soon?  Well, it’s only the 4th of 6 during June.  Seven, if you count as none the one where there was a birthday of an obscure relative, of unknown mortality, I barely saw fit to mention.

Presumably this is the longest day of the year, all 24 and a fraction hours of it.  It’s all downhill from here, but I guess we can take solstice in it taking six months.

Actually, looks like the solstice was technically the 20th, but at a minute before midnight, so yeah.

This is a work day for Deb, so for me it’s a day being nibbled to death by ducks, in the form of a slew of kids, while trying to get something, anything done.  As I get into a groove of more work that pays or generates money indirectly, I will definitely need cheap babysitting part of the time I am here alone with the gang of three.  The great thing is even that will have flexibility.  Even a day of it, in the absence of scheduled out of house work, would be helpful, and it shouldn’t matter which day, so if I have my mother come down, it needn’t interfere with the bit of sitting she still does for my brother.

11:02 AM | BirthdaysBloggingBusinessGeekeryKidsMoneyNewsWeatherTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Forgot to mention

Henry was 10 months old yesterday.  You’d never know it!  You’d think he was about 2 years old, based on size.  Except he looks too babyish, stands expertly but doesn’t take steps, and has limited words.  He’s also a twerp, waking thoroughly before Deb leaves, then falling asleep on my lap once it’s too late for me to get more sleep, leaving me sleepwalking my way through the day.

That also means I have 2 months to raise at least $3000 to stabilize things further, as well as increasing revenue on an ongoing basis so we can afford luxuries like gas and electric subsequently.

10:51 AM | KidsMoney • (0) CommentsPermalink

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Jay: Geeky Hosting Post

I was looking closely at our hosting, as one of the accounts was up for renewal the 10th and I have no idea how I’m going to pay the $112.20 for the year yet.  Failure isn’t an option, as there are people advertising there who we’re obligated to keep the site up for in some form, and it’s the content that would be hardest to move.

I was thinking maybe we could get a hosting account with greater capacity and merge two of the three together (having more than one, even more than two, does have valid reasoning, so I had no plans to consolidate all three).  Credit the balance of what’s been paid already on one of the plans, bringing the outlay down.  Sadly, we’re 8 months into the year for the one in question, so the net would be more.  Oh well.

Partly for any who might be interested, and partly as an additional place where I can refer to the info, here are fun details about our hosting accounts (well, there’s a 4th, with GoDaddy, but that’s just used for a static site for now, and an e-mail address, and the hosting isn’t good).

Elhide hosting (the one that needs to be paid)
Using 362 of 700 MB disk space, 18 of 80 e-mails, 6 of 25 Addon domains (total 7 domains, in other words), 7 of 25 FTP accounts, 5 of 8 MySQL databases (that is, there are 5 blogs there), 1 of 4 mailing lists.  So far this month we have used 1895 MB of 40,000 MB bandwidth.

AV hosting (this one)
Using 282 of 700 MB disk space, 7 of 80 e-mails, 1 of 25 Addon domains (total 2 domains, in other words), 3 of 25 FTP accounts, 2 of 8 MySQL databases (that is, there are 2 blogs here).  So far this month we have used 5716 MB of 40,000 MB bandwidth.  The reason more domains aren’t here is because we were low on disk space and bandwidth before the hosting specs were upgraded and our traffic fell dramatically.

GP hosting (still mainly for business or stuff that was expressing intended to be commercial, like CotC/Bizosphere)
Using 154 of 550 MB disk space, 15 of 60 e-mails, 6 of 15 Addon domains (total 7 domains, in other words), 4 of 5 FTP accounts, 5 of 6 MySQL databases (that is, there are 5 blogs here, one of which I expect to purge), 1 of 2 mailing lists.  So far this month we have used 570 MB of 30,000 MB bandwidth.  The disk space and bandwidth suggest room for more activity here, but this hosting has yet to be upgraded, which seems to be a matter of rolling upgrades as servers are updated, so there’s mainly a database limitation.

Anyway, back to work sprucing one of the blogs to allow it to host ads more easily, so I can list it, and then other work and errands.  If I’m lucky, a small check from a client will be here on time to go to the bank while I am out anyway.

04:57 PM | BloggingBusinessGeekeryMoney • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: No Birthdays

This is one of those blank days for birthdays, a rarity in June.

Deb is home today, so it’ll be another day of my trying to do work, plus some errands and organizing what money there is.  If I didn’t already, I may start some reposts/updates of particularly good, relevant or classic posts from my old blogs.  We’ll see, but I sometimes have trouble creating content these days, and the content is important to making the blogs worthy of ads, and the ads help finance our continued existence.

11:46 AM | BirthdaysBloggingBusinessMoney • (0) CommentsPermalink

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Jay: Feeding Henry

After a few days for his skin to clear and heal, Henry is looking and acting as good as he ever has, following the clear reaction to sweet potato.  He has shown no signs of trouble with wheat, period, and is thrilled.  Tonight he had pasta.  Plain, but pasta, which he thought was cool.  He has also had:
Club crackers
A couple tastes of French bread (after seeing it was made with no milk products)
Flour tortilla, as noted
Generic oat O cereal, plain and with rice milk

He went crazy for the cereal today, in a bowl with rice milk, just like the girls had.

He has been found sucking on dry shreds of cheese twice in the past few days, where one of the girls had dropped it, with no ill effects.

In recent days he had lentils for the first time.  I cooked some of them in chicken broth, spooned some out for him, and threw the rest into soup.  Having never tasted lentils other than in soup, I didn’t realize they were so strongly flavored.  I was reminded more of some of the stronger green vegetables than of beans.

He tasted those, made a face, then apparently decided he loved them.  They were one of the things he ate for a couple days.  He tends to get a good mix.  For instance, tonight he had a bunch of ziti, chicken I’d cooked for him last night, pinto beans partially seasoned (oregano, onion powder, garlic salt, but I added stuff like pepper after I scooped out some for him), and corn.  He could have had rice, had there not been pasta.

Both of those are great additions (as are the beans, of which we are almost out), because wheat adds variety and is low cost, and lentils are low cost and nutritious and keep.

This means we ought to be able in the next day to try him with peeled golden delicious apple.  That’s negligible for salicylates and should be fine, where most apples aren’t as good.  Though I think the biggest problem might be apple juice.

He doesn’t seem to react to anything spiced since the possible reaction to black pepper one time.  I sort of half try to keep him away or modify what I use, and half just go with it.  Like the chicken, it had a ton of spice, but his was a big piece that didn’t get as doused or crisped.  He’s clearly fine with onion and garlic, which are both safe, but not without precedent as a sensitivity among relatives.  He’s also had stuff spiced with at least a dozen herbs and spices, most of which are high or really high, but as spices they aren’t consumed in quantity.  Low level?  That we can live with.

We’re low on provisions, and I need to get carrots and maybe butternut for him, and restock some meat, on which he gets priority.  I’d like to try him with summer squash, and he’ll probably like fresh green beans if I can get some.

It’s nice that it seems to be kind of in check.

11:34 PM | Food & CookingKidsMedicalMoney • (0) CommentsPermalink

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Jay: Yardsale

Well, the yard sale was kind of a bust, except the kids had a blast, it was fun, and including what we left on the side of the road, we got rid of a few large items.  The big sale was the old vacuum cleaner from the office, which went for $5 to an eager buyer, the 2nd to express an interest.

What next?  Maybe another try in our yard.  Maybe at my grandmother’s, which would be better for the kids having fun and location would be good enough, with some promotion.  Maybe some attempts to sell some of the same items in other ways.

The take was $13.75, where I was expecting at least $50.  Oh well.

12:41 PM | BusinessKidsMoney • (0) CommentsPermalink

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Jay: Today’s Order of Busy

Today I’m participating in a yardsale in what should be a better location than my own would be, on a busy road in town.  I dropped stuff off last night, wishing I could come up with even more, despite filling the truck.  Well, I add what it’ll fetch and wish I could come up with more.  I may yet grab more small stuff.  My nephew is giving me and the brats a ride there between 9:00 and 10:00, and my brother will be working on my car nearby, so later there will be some shuffling along those lines.

I started typing this before 8:40, now it’s 9:03.  Sadie is up but the others are still sleeping.  I have to wake and dress them and have everyone ready ASAP.  Looked in on Valerie and went to snap a picture of her sleeping angelically.  Dead batteries.  Apparently every AA battery around is dead too.  We haven’t been able to afford new ones, and no longer have a BJ’s card to get the very best price on lithium ones that actually last.  We’ve been using up my “buy in bulk so you never don’t have batteries” supply of standard ones and nursing them.  Unfortunately, batteries are a necessary business expense and some must be bought.  Apparently right away.

Okay, off to torment sleeping children so we might be ready to go on time.

11:37 AM | BusinessCarsKidsMoneyTotally Random • (1) CommentsPermalink
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