Tuesday, June 30, 2015

I'm Back!

Well, I've got good news and bad news. 

The good news is, I've been busing my tail for a week to get this trailer presentable, and it just about is.  I've rented a storage unit, and have hauled an amazing amount of stuff out of here.  The bad part about that is, I haven't even started on what used to be Cody's bedroom, and has now become my storage room.

The bad news is, the person interested in my trailer -- you know, the one I was busting my tail to get it presentable for -- has backed out.  She decided to buy a brand new one, thinking she could get better financing. 

The good news is, the house is presentable.  Not totally clean, but clean enough I feel comfortable advertising it.

Other than that, not much as been going on around here.  Here is an interesting find:

 I'm not sure what it is, because I didn't take it out of the bag, but it is something my grandma started knitting.   Grandma had a stroke when I was 3, and her right side was paralyzed, so she couldn't knit.  She tried.  My grandpa made her a block to hold the needle between her knees, but in the end, she just stuck with crochet.

And I have a new little buddy.

This is Ronnie the sailor bear.  I never got into the whole beanie baby craze.  I bought a few just because I thought they were cute. 

Now, I'm going to try to go to bed early tonight.  I've been saying that for a week, but this time I mean it.

Really.  I do.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Words of Wisdom For The Ladies

*If you have small children reading over your shoulder, you might want to save this for later.  Nothing vulgar, just blunt. 
  1. He will not leave her for you. If he were going to leave her, he'd have done it already. Vague promises of a future together (“Someday when the time is right...” “If I could only figure out how to get her off my life insurance...” “After the baby comes...”) are just lies meant to keep you in his bed, but not in his life.

  2. If he'll do it with you, he'll do it to you. Don't think for one moment that if he is going to cheat on the one he promised to spend the rest of his life with that he will be faithful to you.
  3. If you are the other woman, do not delude yourself into believing that you are the only one. More than likely, you are just one of many “other women” in his life.  Why would you think he's going to be faithful to you, when he isn't being faithful to the one he vowed to "keep only unto her."
  4. If you do manage to get him to leave his wife for you, don't be surprised when he leaves you for someone else. All that flirting he was doing with you, all those vague promises, yeah, you can bet he's out there flirting with someone else – making her the same vague promises he'd made to you.  And, just like with you, one day he will act on them.

  5. Why would you even want to be with a man you already know is willing to cheat on you? It will not be different with you. There is nothing magical or special about you that will miraculously make a cheater suddenly become a man of integrity. Again, if he'll do it with you, he'll do it to you. 
  6. He does not love you. If he loved you, he would respect you, and if he respected you, he wouldn't be asking you to be his whore. Your only value to him is in what lies between your legs. 
  7. You aren't fooling anyone thinking you are keeping it a secret. Everyone knows; even his wife most likely knows.  She may not say anything, but that's just because she is in denial, thinking that this couldn't be happening to her.  But she knows. 

  8. Any friend who tries to fix you up with a married man is no friend. Period.

  9. If he has children who are older than you are, you are nothing more than a midlife crisis. Your sole purpose is to stoke his ego, and make him feel more manly. He doesn't care about you. If he did, he wouldn't be asking you to disrespect yourself by being some married man's whore.

  10. Finally, you deserve better. You deserve a man who thinks you are the reason the sun comes up in his world every morning. You deserve better than to be the whore, or the backup plan, or the one he settles for because he can't have the one he really wants. Don't ever settle for a man who settles for you.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Eye Candy Friday

It has been so very hot in the plant.  Some of the air conditioning units have been down, and the temps have been hitting the upper 90s to low 100s, depending on where you work.  On the day it hit 100 at my work station, I took a picture of my thermometer and printed out a sign that says, "Nothing says ADP CARES like triple digit temps."  It was a big hit.  Even Supervisor Calvin laughed, and he never laughs at anything. 

While I was sweltering, I got a text from my realtor.  She has someone who might be interested in buying my trailer.  She's looking for one to move out to her mother's land, so that would be great.  When I got home, I called the mortgage company to see what my payout would be, then I called the realtor, and gave her all the info.  We also talked about some more houses we are going to go look at Monday after work.

Next step is getting my trailer house cleaned out and cleaned up. I tracked down the guy who owns the mini-storage on my road, and rented one.  I already started moving some stuff down there, and will move some more tomorrow.  The biggest thing will be getting the cat's room cleaned up.  It's pretty nasty in there, but a good shampooing ought to take care of that. 

And, of course, Cody's old room, which has become storage.  I've got some good sized boxes that we are going to shove stuff into and haul down to the storage room. 

Now, for the fun stuff.  One of my friends had mentioned that she was thinking about buying a Spindolyn.  Since I had decided that I didn't really like mine, I packed it up and sent it to her.  In return, she sent me tons and tons of fiber to spin.

Now, I just have to get good at spinning. 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Fun Stuff

Because I have nothing better to post.

Can You Complete the Quiz?

It's harder than you think! Every answer must start with the first letter of your first name:

Name : Becky
Animal: Bear
Boys name : Bryan
Girls name : Barbara
Occupation: Barber
Color: Blue

Something you wear: Bow tie
Drink : Beer
Food: Beans
Something you find in the bathroom: Brush
Place: Boston
Reason to be late: Battery is dead
Something you shout out: Booyah!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Taking A Break

I am so tired.  Do you want to know how tired I am?  I'm so tired, I tried to put the chocolate milk mix into the refrigerator.  Then I had to go back and check to make sure I hadn't put the milk into the cabinet. 

I'm so tired I drank Group Leader Fernando's coke.  He left it on my table, and without thinking, I picked it up and started drinking.  I'd gotten three swallows down before I realized that 1) it was warm, and 2) it wasn't diet Dr Pepper.  Um, oops. I bought him another one, and when I took it to him, I told him what I had done.  He didn't think it was funny. 

Anyway, I'm so tired and stressed about this house hunting thing that I decided to take a break today.  The stressful part is that I've got to sell my trailer house before the bank will give me a mortgage.  But I'm still living in the trailer house.  The plan is now to try to find a place to rent, then I can move out and get this place cleaned up and sold.   Once I find a rental, some of the pressure will be off.  Then I can take my time looking for the right house.

What did I do while taking this break today?  I made yarn.

This is some I'd spun a few days ago.  Since I only had one single, and didn't really want to Navajo ply this, I wound the single into a ball and plied from both ends.  I still haven't washed it, but it's done.

Speaking of plying, I got all that fiber last week and wanted to spin some of it up.  Alas, all my bobbins were full. 

No problem. I'd just Navajo ply the gold single, and ....wait, all my bobbins were full.  What was I going to ply it on to? 

Sigh, I ended up winding the natural colored fiber off into a ball, and used that bobbin to ply.  I'm getting better at it, but still need more practice.

Finally, I had an empty bobbin!  I spun up a good bit of my new fiber.  I'm getting much more consistent, but it's still a bit slubby. 

They say not to judge a person's yarn until they've spun up a pound of fiber.  I've still got a long way to go before I've spun that much.

Finally, remember that lighter I never could find?  I still haven't found it, so I broke down and bought another one. 

Because 'Merica, that's why.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Dear CoWorker

If you say you are getting ready to get married, but are actively seeking a sexual liaison with someone who is not your intended, that's a pretty good indication that marriage may not be the best option for you at this point.

Or ever.  

Thank you.

That is all.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Struck Out

We went house hunting again today, and pretty much struck out.  There was one the agent was dying for me to see.  It was a cute house, and the best thing about it was the kitchen.

The bathroom wasn't bad, either.

Other than that, I didn't really like it that much. 

The other house that I had liked turned out to have a lot more damage than I'd thought.  That's why I brought James, because he would know what to look for like that and stuff.  He started pointing out this rotten spot, and that water damage, and this poor workmanship, but when we got to the black mold in the closet, that's when we crossed it off the list. 

We also looked at a very nice house, but it was a little too much house for just me.  

So, back to the drawing board.  We'll keep looking, and eventually find something. 

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

All Things New

I've got good news, and bad news.  First, the bad news.

That other house I was going to look at is already under contract.  I'm not surprised.  It was a very nice house at a very good price.  So, that one is off the table, but we've got plenty more to look at.  We're going to go look some more tomorrow.

Now, the good news.  We went to the bank and talked to the loan officer.  Contingent on my selling the trailer house, she can get me qualified for up to $140,000.  I said, "Well, all right, then."  But I don't want to go that high.  I'm still looking in the $80-90K range.  Once I'm done here, I'm going to go back to the website and look around a bit.

So, yesterday, while I was waiting on my tire to get fixed, I was wandering around Wal-mart.  I just so happened upon the clearance aisle.  Yes, I bought it, despite having 2857 other journals. 

It was on clearance.  That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

Today I had to go back to Wal-mart, because I forgot to buy dog food.  Yeah, they wouldn't have been too happy with me if I'd made them wait until Friday to eat again.  While I was there, I happened upon the drinkware aisle.

You know I had to get it, because Independence Day is coming up, and I'm all about 'Merica. 

Once I finally made it home and checked my mail, I got the fiber I ordered. 

Yep, two pounds of it.  By the time I get all this spun, I ought to be pretty good.  Now, I just have to empty my bobbins so I'll have something to spin it onto. 

And finally, a co-worker of mine asked me to order some pepper sauce for him, since he doesn't have internet.  Really?  In this day and age, there are still people without internet?  Since I can't order just one thing, I threw one on my favorite books into my basket.  This is the one that made me want to work with blind people.  I kind of gave up that dream when I realized I didn't have the temperament or patience for it. 

And I got a couple of movies.  A double feature.  I used to have Shanghai Noon, but lent it out and never got it back.  I don't loan movies any more.  I've lost too many of them that way. 

Anyway, Shanghai Noon is hilarious. Shanghai Knights is funny, too, but not quite as good.  It's still worth a watch, though. 

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go browse the Coldwell Banker website a bit.  And eat ice cream. 

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Another One Of Those Days

Well, a couple of days, really.  It all started yesterday after work.  The realtor and I went and looked at 5 houses.  Yes, five.  I know that was a lot, but we just did a quick walk through of each, to get an idea of whether I want to take a closer look.  There were two I liked, and three I didn't like so much.  One of them had a fantastic kitchen and master bath, but the rest of the house was in terrible shape.  Another one was cute, and only $70K, but it was so far out of town.  I didn't really want to drive so far every day.  There was a third option that was a really nice house, it just wasn't grabbing me.  It didn't feel like home.

One I liked a lot, but is pretty expensive.  Another one I do like, and is $5K less, but it will need some work.  Not a lot, just cleaning up and painting.  It's been sitting empty for a while, but it has a nice big yard, already fenced, and a covered patio.  While we were driving to that one, we saw another one near it with a for sale sign.  I went to the company's website and looked at the pictures.  I decided I wanted to see it, too. It's the same price as the other house (the lesser priced one), but is in a lot better shape.  If it's as cute as the pictures show, I think it's the one.  We are going to look at it tomorrow after we go to the bank.

The plan was to go to the real estate agency's website and download pictures to show you, but as it happens, that didn't happen. 

The realtor told me what all paperwork I would need to get my financing started, and I had to get it all found and arranged.  We were going to go to the bank today, but...well, keep reading. 

This morning, I got to work and found that the shift we're not allowed to hold accountable for anything had left us an absolute mess.   It took me the whole first hour just to straighten their mess out.  Then one of the line brazers was out. 

You know how every time Former Group Leader Rod needs a brazer I have to go over there?  Yeah, well guess what happens when Group Leader Fernando needs a brazer?  Nothing.  Absolutely nothing.   So, I had to run back and forth between line brazing and sub brazing.  That was wearying. 

But the day finally ended -- or so I thought.

Upon arriving at home and getting out of my truck, I heard a suspicious hissing sound.  I prayed it was just the radiator making that sound it makes when I don't check the fluid often enough, but no....I had a flat tire.  And no Fix-A-Flat to be had.  I called the realtor and put off our bank trip until tomorrow.  I had to get this flat fixed somehow. 

I went next door to borrow James' air compressor, but he had just laid down to take a nap.  He's working nights this week.  Beverly said if I could get Cody to take the tire off, I could borrow her car to take it in to get it fixed.  Alas, we couldn't find the jack.  (She also said I could borrow her car to go meet the realtor, but I had to get mine fixed so I could go to work in the morning.  Can't pay a mortgage without a job.)

Plan three...I texted a friend from work to see if he could take it off on his way home, but he'd left early and was already home. 

In despair I bowed my head, and walked into the laundry room.  Guess what I found there?  Yep, a can of  Fix-A-Flat.  Woo-hoo!!  Why it was in my laundry room instead of in my Jimmy is beyond me.  I've long since given up trying to find an explanation for such things. 

I put the Fix-A-Flat into the tire and drove to the corner gas station in such a hurry that I forgot to get quarters for the air machine.  Luckily, I had picked up some ones and the clerk gave me change.  I finished airing up the aforementioned flat tire and drove on into Wal-mart.  While they were fixing my flat, I bought two more cans of  Fix-A-Flat and this time, I left them in the Jimmy. 

In spite of everything, there has been some spinning going on.  I spun up all the fiber that came with the wheel.  I ordered some more, but then couldn't wait until it got here.  I grabbed some roving I'd dyed with cherry Kool-Aid.  It had felted just a bit when I died it, but I was still able to spin it.  

I've got some more of this that I was spinning on a drop spindle, so I'm thinking I'm going to Navajo ply this.  This is my first attempt at Navajo plying:  

With a wee bit of the fuzzy lettuce single I had left over from plying it.

Since the spinning bug was still biting pretty hard, I plied the onion skin dyed yarn.  

I had this much of one single left over:  

I used the wheel to transfer it from the drop spindle to a bobbin.  I think that will make it much easier to play than having the spindle flopping around all over the floor. 

So, now, then next question is, do I wait for the roving I ordered, or do I start trying to spin Disemboweled Cow?  Either way, I'll have to empty up the bobbins.  That will be the next project. 

When I get around to it.

Sunday, June 07, 2015

The Wait Is Over

And was a long one.

It's been 37 years since there has been a Triple Crown winner.  Since Affirmed last won in 1978, so many horses had come close.  But not close enough.

 A lot of people had given up hope.  It was even stated a year ago that there would never be another one.   They were wrong.

This morning, we woke up in a world that has added the 12th member to that very exclusive club.  American Pharoah won the third and final leg of the Triple Crown, and he won decisively. 

He led from wire to wire, and seemed to get stronger as the race went on.  I had flashbacks to Secretariat.  So much so that I half expected the announcer to shout, "He is moving like a tremendous machine."

And indeed he was, pulling away at the end, leaving no doubt in anyone's mind that he deserved this victory.

And the nation cheered, long and loud.

It's been a long, long 37 years, but the wait is over.

Until next year. 

Saturday, June 06, 2015


The word courage has been bandied about a lot lately, most often in regards to things that don't require courage at all.  A man proclaims himself as a member of a protected class, and we call it courage.  A woman whines that the tax payer should cover the expense of her birth control, and we call it courage.  A man mutilates his body because he is uncomfortable with who he is, and we call it courage.  Have we forgotten what courage really is?

Seventy one years ago today.  June 6, 1944, in the misty gray light of early morning, landing craft approached the beaches of Normandy.  Boats filled with frightened young men, many of them barely more than boys.

Boys wishing they were still at home in bed.  Shaking with fear.  Praying.  Maybe crying.  Knowing that many of them would not survive the day. 

And yet, when those landing craft hit the beach,

when those ramps opened,

without hesitation, they stood and charged into the hail of bullets that would claim nearly 10,000 of them before the sun set.

Seeing their friends, their brothers in arms, cut down beside them.  Still they ran.  Still they fought.  In spite of their fear, and knowing that the fate of the entire world rested on their shoulders, they claimed that beach and began the long, slow slog across Europe that would eventually lead to Hitler's demise. 

Now, that is courage. 

And that is why they truly were The Greatest Generation. 

Thursday, June 04, 2015

The Great House Hunt Continues

Those of you who have been keeping up with my blog will remember that I am looking for a new house.  I'd marked a few on the Zillow app, and today I finally got together with the realtor to go look at one of them.  It was the one I liked second best -- judging from the photos-- and the one I liked best of the houses within my budget.

When we got to the house, I was so disappointed.  First of all, the realtor had told me that there was someone renting the house. That was its first strike.  I didn't want to kick someone out of her home.  She was pretty upset, too.  Seems the homeowner had told her that she wouldn't sell the house if this lady agreed to rent it, and it was supposed to have been taken off the market.  She has nothing to worry about, because after seeing the house in person, I didn't want it anyway.  Even the realtor said she wasn't going to show it any more.

It hadn't been kept in good condition, and was pretty run down.  Not only that, it was very dirty and smelled -- and not just of cigarette smoke.  We walked through it, and I really didn't like the bathrooms.  They were smaller than the pictures made them look, and had really outdated fixtures.  The only part I did like about it was the kitchen and the living area.  But, I didn't like them well enough to want the house, nor did I like them well enough to kick someone out of her home. 

After we left, the realtor -- Sue-- and I went back to her office.  We looked through her book and found a few more houses that we are going to go look at Monday afternoon.    "Don't worry," she assured me.  "I'll find you a place.  I'll even sell your trailer after you've moved out."

I know some people don't like using realtors, but I wanted to go through one, since I've never bought a house before.  This one has a really good reputation, too.  She is going to make sure I'm in a good neighborhood, and of course, she knows all the legalities involved.   I'd told her I was going to get a VA loan, and she knows someone at a local bank who handles VA loans.  I'd planned on going through the credit union, but I'm debating if it would be better to us a local bank.  I'll discuss that with her at another time.

Long time readers may remember way back when I bought a fake leather journal with a ribbon marker.   For five years, that fake leather journal with a ribbon marker has been my companion and my confidant.  I've filled it's pages with my hopes and dreams, my fears and frustrations, my triumphs and my tears, and things I can't share with anyone else.  It was with no small sadness that as of last night, I have filled the last page.  There is a bit of mourning going on in my heart tonight.  

As with all things, it's time to put the past behind me and look to the future.  It's time to move on.  Despite having 2856 other journals somewhere in this house of mine, I went and bought a new one. 

When I put pen to paper later this evening, this book will become my new companion and confidant.  I will tell it my hopes and dreams, my fears and frustrations, my triumphs and my tears, and things I can't share with anyone else.  Eventually, I will fill it up, too, and have to move on.  But for now, it is a fresh new world for me, a new life to begin living...

Yes, that is a Tyrion Lannister action figure that I also bought.

Because that's just who I am. 

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Life Story

Recently, a friend on Facebook posted a list of life story questions.  The goal is to answer one each week, and tell your life story in a year's time.  I copied and saved the list, thinking I could use them on days like today when I don't have any blog fodder and am too tired to come up with something.  So, without further ado, here is my first question and answer.

What is your full name? Explain why your parents gave you that name.

My full name is Rebecca Layne Gunstream.

Rebecca comes from one of my mother's best friends, Rebecca Goodell.  She had originally wanted to spell it Rebekah, like in the Bible, but she didn't.  She said that the nurse talked her out of it, claiming that no one would ever spell it right.  We spelled it that way up until I started first grade, then my mother figured I'd better start spelling it the way it was on my birth certificate.

My middle name comes from General Walter P. Lane, who was my great grandfather's commanding officer during the Civil War.  My middle name would have been Lane, no matter whether I'd been born a boy or a girl.  If I'd been a boy, it would have been spelled Lane.   (My first name would have been Gregory, if I'd been a boy.) 

My older brother went to college in Marshall, Texas, and one weekend when we went up to see him -- parent's weekend, or something -- my daddy took me to see his grave.  He took a picture, but it got ruined in one of the hurricanes.  I used to be proud of being named for him, but after doing some research, I think I'll just use him as a reminder of the kind of person not to become. 

Gunstream is my last name.  My father gave it to me.  It is Swedish in origin, brought to the U.S in 1836 by my Great-great grandfather Peter M. Gunstream.  

So, there you have it.  My full name and why my parents gave it to me. 

Monday, June 01, 2015

The Wrong Day

I picked the wrong day to wear my new boots to work for the first time. 

I'd been wearing them at home to try to get them broken in a bit before wearing them all day long.  Good thing, too.  I think I would have chopped my feet off if I'd tried to wear them straight from the box.  I was doing OK.  My feet were hurting a little bit, but not so much I couldn't stand it. 

Get it?  Stand it? Like standing?  On my feet?

OK, never mind then.  

I was doing OK until Supervisor Ronnie came running up and asked me, "Do you know how to braze [such and such] headers?  Can you go over to line 1 and braze this order up?"

I got over there, and they didn't have all the parts.  I went back to my line, and about 30 minutes later, Ronnie comes up with a box in his hand.  They'd found the parts after all.  "Can you stay late and braze these?"

I told Cody to just go on home and come pick me up at 4:00.  So I got to work a 10 hour shift in my new boots.  Yes, my feet are feeling it. 

I had to laugh at Cody Saturday when we got off.  He said, "That one day off is just enough to tease us."  He said that Ronnie had asked him if he was sure he wanted to go back to school.  He said yes, he'd run up too much student debt to quit now.  I said, "You don't want to spend the rest of your life working in a factory, anyway." 

He said, "I don't want to spend the rest of the summer working in a factory, but I need the money." 

I laughed and said, "Welcome to real life." 

Despite being plumb knackered, when I got home, I rigged up a sort of lazy kate for my two spindolyn spindles and plied the fuzzy lettuce yarn. 

 Yes, it's still on the bobbin.  I just ran out of energy and decided it would wash just as well tomorrow as it would today.

I have this much left on one of the spindles.  

I might try my hand at Navajo plying that, just to see how to do it. 


Tonight, I'm too tired to think, much less try to learn something new.


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