Not in the clamor of the crowded street, not in the shouts and plaudits of the throng, but in ourselves, are triumph and defeat.--Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

REDIRECT ALERT! (Scroll down past this mess if you're trying to read an archived post. Thanks. No, really, thanks.)

Due to my inability to control my temper and complacently accept continued silliness with not-quite-as-reliable-as-it-ought-to-be Blogger/Blogspot, your beloved Possumblog will now waddle across the Information Dirt Road and park its prehensile tail at http://possumblog.mu.nu.

This site will remain in place as a backup in case Munuvia gets hit by a bus or something, but I don't think they have as much trouble with this as some places do. ::cough::blogspot::cough:: So click here and adjust your links. I apologize for the inconvenience, but it's one of those things.

Monday, March 28, 2005

I have found…

…that if I actually do my work, it has a much higher probability of getting done. Which I suppose is why it’s still not finished. Well, that, and not knowing exactly what I am being asked to do, and being asked to do it with no background information on costs or anything.

Which leads to the concept of known far and wide as SWAG, in which random dollar amounts are plucked from twixt my squishy glutes and assigned to various to-be-fixed-or-constructed line items; the resulting column of “numbers” is then sub-totaled, then doubled, after which overhead and profit are added, then doubled, and then a 10% contingency line item is added, and the whole is then totaled. And doubled.

And somehow, it always manages to cost twice as much as you planned.

Anyway, I’m still about a quarter of the way through in the plucking phase, so this will have to be necessarily brief.

Or not.

SO, Thursday night I head toward the lovely ville of Truss, with a stop off at Sam’s for some gas and a run inside the store to see if they had anything Easterbunnyish for the kids. Since we were going to be on the run Saturday night and Sunday, there was no time to do our usual collection of goodies to put into their individualized baskets (and no, I’m not joking) and anyway, Oldest is getting a bit too old for such things.

They had lots of stuff, but nothing I really liked.

I did buy some road-n-hotel snacks, though--breakfast bars and such like. For some reason, whenever we go anywhere it’s like trying to feed a pack of hyenas. At home, the kids can eat something small for breakfast, go all the way to lunch and eat not a whole lot, and then go all the way to supper. On trips, however, they can’t seem to get enough food.

Anyway, checked out and went on across the road to Wal-Mart to see if THEY had any Easter baskets. Or more snacks. And a birthday present for Ashley. Again, although the selection was bigger, it wasn’t quite what the Easter Possum wanted to leave. They did have a lovely assortment of snacks, however, including Cheez-Its. And I found a very nice study Bible for Ashley.

I called home to explain why I was being so delayed, and Miss Reba mentioned in passing about seeing some neat Easter baskets at Target. Hmm. “Mentioned in passing”? ‘That must mean she REALLY wants me to go to Target!’ I said to myself inside my little acorn-sized brain. SO, off to Target.

Got there and WOW! They had the EXACT SAME THING AS WAL-MART! ::sigh:: At least they were the same price. I picked up a Spider-Man metal bucket/basket for Boy which had a wristband with candy in it, and a pen with candy in it, and a thing with candy in it, and some candy. ALL of it Spidey-themed. (As an aside--I think someone could do pretty well in the Old, Yet Still Quite Childish market with a basket featuring Mary Jane.)

For Catherine, there was a Curious George basket with George in a cute pair of pajamas, with a small pack of candy, and a pack of story cards (pictures of objects, which you use to tell a story, and then try to remember the order of the cards afterwards--supremely difficult with an acorn-sized brain, let me tell you) and for some strange reason, a harmonica. Why did I get my sweet, yet entirely too loud child something else with which to make racket?

It is a mystery.

Now then, for the older girls. I had figured on a spiffy metal basket of some sort with a DVD and some cool edible stuff and maybe a Beanie Baby, since they do still like squishy things. An hour later, I FINALLY found an interesting rectangular wicker desk organizer that was divided in two, with two lids that folded over each half. I’m not sure what its actual use is, although it was probably written on the tag that I had to remove so that no one would suspect that the gift might not have been left by an oviparous rabbit at all, but by a person. With baskets in hand, I went and found a couple of DVDs--one for Rebecca, The Incredibles, and Giant for Oldest--and a couple of tall jars of caramel corn, and finally a couple of squishy animals--a blue bunny and yellow ducky, each with a pack of jelly beans. (Jellly beans which Oldest informed everyone as loudly as possible come Sunday that she absolutely HATED. But which she would not be talked into trading. Figures.)

Anyway, the plan was to put the tall bottle of caramel corn in one side, and the movie and critter in the other side. They really did look nice and teenagery, even if a certain person didn’t care for hers. Middle Girl seemed quite taken with the idea. BUT, all that’s on Sunday. There’s still the intervening weekend between here and there to cover.

Home, very late it turned out, hid the merchandise, and started loading the Family Truckster with our luggage. It has taken some time, but Reba is now gotten to the point where she doesn’t think she has to pack for a week to stay gone a day. She did well last year, but this year she had it down almost to my level of lightweight travel. Basically, there are two outfits--the driving over and hanging around outfit of Day One, and then the Day Two outfit. Since there is a late-afternoon award ceremony that requires nicer clothing, I just take a shirt and tie and slacks and wear it all day and night on Day Two. One thing to pack, plus a pair of oxford shoes, some clean underwear and shaving stuff and toothpaste and junk like that. And Reba, although not quite there, was pretty darned close this year, and resisted the urge to bring along huge bags full of stuff for the kids to keep them occupied. That’s what the darned television is for, right!?

Oldest had already gone over Thursday afternoon with some other friends of ours, so the van actually had some room in it this time--even more startling is that it had room even WITH Ashley’s junk on Saturday night.


Into bed at around 11:30, and then right back up at 4:30 so as to be able to get everyone up and dressed and out of the house and to the building at 6:15.


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