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I got a short walk with M., while the sitter waited with both kids. I got a long walk by myself later in the evening.

R., A. and I went to Crossroads for dinner.

The man working on the shower pointed out that water volume to the house was very low and we talked about that. I called the water district. They asked a few questions and laughed at me for taking so long to complain about it. They are going to send someone out to check it out.

This is probably good to get done before power washing the house. I told that person about the issue, and he's going to pursue it with the water district as well; he apparently knows people there. And everywhere in this town.
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Subtitled: The Relationship Between the Stuff in Your Head and What's Under Your Bed

I skimmed it. I really did skim the whole thing tho -- I didn't skip large chunks of it.

I was primarily looking for sourcing on a statistic attributed to the author (average american household has 300K things in it). I can't find it in this book. In addition to skimming, I tried a bunch of searches. If you manage to find it in the book, please tell me where you found it!

I got the book for free through kindleunlimited.

Lark is lesbian, so if you find it more amenable to read self-help books by someone you can relate to on an identity / orientation level, that information might be handy to you. The point came up in the context of her describing major decluttering episodes in her life (one was in advance of coming to terms with her identity, the other was in advance of the end of a relationship).

Lark likes Hill (_Think and Grow Rich_) and Louise Hay. I am not such a fan of these. So again, this might be useful information; if you these kinds of approaches work well for you, perhaps this book will as well.

Lark spends a lot of time at the beginning and throughout the book discussing negative self-talk and its interaction with our stuff.

As a source of "tips and tricks" for decluttering, there is little here that I found new. Of course, every decluttering book has _some_ technical information and this one was more or less adequate along those lines, and above average in terms of discussing converting decluttering into something that has subtasks and is on the calendar, not taking too much on at a time, cleaning up after each bout, etc. Lark's strengths lie in discussing what are probably depression and anxiety that maintain themselves through negative self-talk and which manifest in our physical world as clutter.

Since I spent no money and not much time on the book, I don't feel at all bad about having skimmed it. And I can definitely imagine that this book has an audience; I hope it finds it.
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JAK has been steadily reissuing her older contemporaries as eBooks. Generally speaking, these are unchanged (altho there have been unfortunate exceptions). I noticed that _Private Eye_ and _Silver Linings_ are out in eBook format.

_Silver Linings_ starts out as an island adventure with some backstory. There is a classic she discovers dead body of older man she was supposed to meet followed by an encounter with him, then a run through the jungle to a cave and some of the backstory starts to come out. On the second island, they meet a hooker with a heart of gold and there's a pretty classic misunderstanding as well as a bar fight. Then they are back to Seattle -- her home base where she has her business, an art gallery. She has crazy artist family. He has a business in the islands. Where will they live? Along the way, he is trying to figure out who is responsible for the dead body, and problems from his past resurface. The backstory continues to get ever more convoluted with her as the rescuer of multiple damaged men from her sister's past (he is an ex fiancee of the sister as well). So, all kinds of fun here, a pretty long book. Hooker with a heart of gold winds up playing an ongoing role, and retires to design clothing (a little Seattle seamstress reference, there, I think!).

_Private Eye_ takes place on a Not Tropical Island. She's running a b&b with some permanent residents who were friends of the great aunt who left the place to her. There are Problems and various theories as to the source of the problems. She "hires" him not for money but a month's free stay at the currently closed inn. He takes the opportunity to recover from a sprained ankle and other damages from a case, and to work on a novel as he contemplates a career transition. The permanent residents include "the Colonel" who is also an Inventor, the shabby chic woman who owns some (worthless) stock, and the former moll of a gangster long imprisoned -- clearly, JAK was having fun with some tropes here. All the various theories are neatly tied up. This one is a lot shorter and very, very funny.

I think I owned these both in paper at various points, but I'm very happy to see them out in eBook form, if only because it is so very much fun to see "contemporaries" become accidental "historicals".
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The man arrived who is going to be redoing our shower. The dumpster was delivered shortly after he arrived. And the plumber arrived some hours later. I expected it to be demo only today (my assumption and my bad), but nope, plumbing happened, too. No scary surprises and only one significant discussion once everything was opened up. When the original shower was installed, they changed their mind about some things and framed the back in a bit and moved the drain from where they originally planned to put it. We removed the framing, to get a slightly bigger shower (even after doing the prep for the tiling and the tiling); drain stayed where it was. We'll have to get a new piece of board in for the ceiling but that's not a big deal. Turns out we had failed to buy a shower valve, so R. went to Home Depot in Hudson to pick that up. And with the adjustment in the dimensions, I ordered some additional tiles for the wall and the floor. All in all, a really productive day. I really like the man we hired, who I found on the internet and only finally met for the first time today. Turns out I'm the first customer he's ever had who he never set eyes on before he showed up to do the job. I'd sent him a picture of the shower, so all of that was as expected, and R. did the measurements so those were as correct as they could be until things were opened up and we understood what was going on there.

T.'s sitter was kind enough to hang out with both kids for a half hour so I could get my one mile walk with M.

I moved a case from the unfinished back into the finished 3rd floor space, where the two drawer filing cabinet had been that I moved downstairs. I then moved some of the things that had been in the hutch on the ledge into the case. I did some decluttering while I was at it. Lots of envelopes from wedding invitations with our old return address printed on them; no point in keeping those any more.

R. and I got takeout from Benjarong. We really enjoyed it. A. really hated the smell. Poor A.! I thought she was so congested from her cold she couldn't smell anything, but apparently her nose is clearing out a little bit.
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I took T. to the horse. We had lunch and dinner at home. He had leftover birthday cake for lunch. We split a frozen pizza (bold brand dairy free and gluten free -- I care about the former not so much about the latter) and had frozen baked fries. Not healthy, but also quite convenient and cheap.

I did a short walk with M. Later I did a three mile by myself. I talked to T. about doing a run for his track log book. He opted for the 3 mile and didn't even do the Windsor cut off that makes it a bit shorter. On the way, I saw a neighbor who speaks little English. We always wave and smile at each other. This time, he stopped and with a big smile indicated with gestures (pinky finger, then running in place motions with his hands) that he'd seen T. run past a little before me. So sweet of him to stop and tell me that he'd seen my son! I really love my neighbors and my neighborhood.

A. did not go to the horse; she has a cold. I did remember to donate her boots, however. Finally. They've been in the car for weeks.

T. and I ran some errands. We got cash from the bank. We got some things (tooth brush, tooth paste, tooth brush holder, face wipes) that were on his list from CVS. I got some groceries at Roche Bros. We finally donated a bag of things that I'd been meaning to drop off at the middle class guilt reduction station for weeks.
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It was a busy day. R. picked up the cake from Roche Bros. We were supposed to get it the night before and R. tried, but they had put "Peg" on the cake instead of T.'s name. Ooops. They fixed it.

I took T. to martial arts. His teacher gave him a belt rack when T. asked where he would store his white belt when he got his yellow belt. A little decluttering on his part! Very nice of him. We stopped at the library in Boylston so I could return the book I had borrowed a couple weeks earlier and not returned because of various cancellations. Then we went to track. After that, we went to Party Lab in Billerica, where T. got a balloon and some paper plates, napkins, forks, etc. and candles shaped like the number 1 and the number 2. After that, we went to McDonald's for lunch. Then we went to Altitude for his birthday party. Up until a few days earlier, we had been expecting maybe 5 kids to show up, but a bunch of people who had been "no" switched to "yes" and some people who hadn't rsvp'd came. Amazing! Not the way it usually works! We actually had one more jumper than the minimum (10). Everyone was really nice. Some people knew each other from other places (preschool in town). Some people knew each other from earlier parties (at Altitude, no less!). Everyone was fun to talk to.
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I am not a lawyer (that would be a large chunk of my husband's family, but not us). This is not legal advice.


There was a Thing that happened at Google recently, in which an engineer who was never named by google vomited up on internal systems the Larry Summers argument about why men are so overrepresented in high paying, high status tech / science / etc. jobs. It's a classic evil argument. Discrimination produces an outcome, and then afterwards, the beneficiaries claim that it wasn't the discrimination -- this is what the victims of discrimination _wanted_. You don't want to argue with their _choice_, do you?!? I'm not sure _why_ they think this is a solid argument for anything other than, they are being an awful human being. Which they are. I assume this is one of those denial mechanisms that allows people to enjoys the fruits of someone else without feeling guilty about it. Most of us have been there, and we should feel bad about it when it is brought to our attention.

Anyway. The engineer was fired, self-identified, said he would pursue legal remedies, and it looks like maybe? again NOT a lawyer, he's going to claim some kind of retaliation under California labor law intended to protect people engaged in worker organizing type behavior and speech. Which is really interesting for someone trying to appeal to a conservative end of society, with a decent chance of backfiring politically even if it succeeds legally.

But will it succeed legally? I am not a lawyer. But I did find this!


I will say straight up that if you get a bunch of people on Stack Exchange committed to finding out that you lied on your resume, you really better have done every single thing you claim on that resume. And it looks like maybe that was not entirely the case here.

Here is why this matters:


We _don't_ know precisely why google fired him -- they didn't say, at least, not as far as I have been able to find (but if you found it, I want to see it!). This article however says:

"The employer may be able to get the lawsuit thrown out, on the theory that the employee should not be able to sue for wrongful termination because the employee should never have been hired in the first place. If the case isn't thrown out and the employee can prove wrongful termination, the employee's damages might be limited. Typically, courts allow employees in this situation to collect damages for lost pay only up until the employee's lie is discovered. Once the employer learns of the fraud, even if it happens because of the employee's lawsuit, damages are cut off."

So. Engineer better be able to prove every single solitary thing on that resume. Or this case seems deeply flawed (again, I am not a lawyer). But honestly, I would not be even a little bit surprised to discover that he maybe shaded the truth or outright lied about one or more things on that resume. Because if there is one thing people do who are trying to preserve their position of privilege, it is lie, lie, lie, lie, lie.


That said, here's an employment lawyer who is still willing to help people in California who lied on their resume:

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I've been decluttering lately, so I've been thinking a lot about deferred decision making. Because I've _also_ been thinking a lot about anxiety, and borderline personality disorder the last few months, I have very much backed away from a naive idolatry of decisiveness (turns out that bias to action that so benefits me has some real downsides).


Humans defer decision making. Sometimes, we call that "patience". Sometimes, we call that "procrastination". Sometimes, I call that, "letting it age". Sometimes I call that, "I can't deal with that right now." Sometimes I call that, "I have more important things to do."

So the _exact same_ non-action has many frames. More than I have enumerated, for sure!

I didn't do it then. And later, maybe I wish I had -- or maybe I'm really glad I didn't. And another person might have an arbitrary perspective on the same non-action, at an arbitrarily selected point in time, subject to change with the person selected, the time asked, etc.

That is a whole lot of judgment, wrapped up in commentary on something that didn't actually happen.
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My sister asked for Studio Ghibli movies if I have any. I wasn't planning on getting rid of any DVDs during this declutter, but, what the heck. I put them in the mail to her today. There was a boxed set with subtitles and three Disney dubbed movies.

Bighearted Books came to pick up the 3 bags and 11 boxes of books. Which was rather more than I had planned, but that's okay, too. I had to transfer them all from the second floor to the garage (ugh). And I had to scrounge around to find space for the contents of a plastic bin.

I'm going to try to learn from my walking partner and declutter the physical books a few a time from now on. I think if I did a half dozen a week, I'm at a point where it would take a couple years.

I'm currently reading two physical books:

_Succeeding with Difficult Clients: Applications of Cognitive Appraisal Therapy_, by Richard Wessler, Sheenah Hankin and Jonathan Stern. I like the idea of thinking about a person's stance in terms of dominant/submissive, active/passive, friendly/hostile. This gives them a really elegant structure for thinking about certain personality disorders, and understanding how best to develop rapport, by having the therapist adjust their stance to be appropriate for the client (which may match, or may complement), or if that is not possible, presumably helping identify a replacement therapist.

I feel like the book is pretty theory heavy, however, especially for a book with "Applications" in the subtitle.

_Discipline without Damage_

I picked this up off a discount pile at Willow books before they did their closeout sale. On the one hand, this ought to be right up my alley: attachment oriented, fundamentally anti-discipline. It's a connections oriented way to help kids develop and become healthy adults. Unfortunately, as one might expect by a book with Discipline and Behave in the title, it's probably way more structured than anything I can tolerate. I basically haven't found anything I like a lot better than _Parent Effectiveness Training_. I probably should quit trying. But in the meantime, I'm reading this, and being super picky about how she talks about Bowlby but not Mary Ainsworth (I'm so used to books focusing on Mary Ainsworth and only mentioning Bowlby, I had sort of forgotten that Ainsworth gets erased in a lot of the standard treatments). And how she seems to seriously believe that anxiety is more common now than it was in the past (!!!). And a variety of other historical inanity.

These may be the only (non)reviews I post about these books. I may not finish them. But I'm going to try to get in the habit of describing what I see that is good and not so good in books I am trying to read before sending them along to someone else.

ETA: A. and I went to lunch at Julie's Place. R. took the hutch and lateral file to Savers. A. found some sort of song identification game on Apple TV and we are having fun playing it together. We are also (for the fourth time, I think) still playing Atomic Hangman with her cousins and aunt (my sister) over FaceTime. That is weirdly entertaining, altho we had a whole string of technical difficulties today that we had to work through.
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During the day, I moved the bookcase that was in a 3rd floor dormer down to the second floor hall. I moved it into a location then occupied by a metal stand (one of two in the house, they've been used for a lot of things over the years). The metal stand stood in front of the window (there isn't much to it, so it didn't block the light much -- these stands make good plants stands), awaiting the next few developments.

I found media boxes in the basement. I unloaded the CD shelving unit in my office into the media cases. I lowered the CD shelving unit to the floor, onto a towel. Alas, I lost control of it on the way down and it hit a media box on the corner, breaking the lid and a Laurie Berkner CD jewel box, but otherwise miraculously not damaging anything else (or me). I slid the CD shelving unit over to the second floor hallways, but decided that since it was made of solid maple and the shelves don't come out, it was too heavy to move it upstairs.

I finished purging filing cabinets.

When R. got home, we moved the CD shelving unit upstairs to the dormer. We move the lateral file in my office to the middle of the room. We moved a 2 drawer filing cabinet with a pull out tray from the 3rd floor to the second floor office and I transferred what was left in the lateral filing cabinet into the 2 drawer cabinet. We also moved a short bookcase from the unfinished space downstairs to where the CD shelving unit had been.

The office shredder lubricating and sharpening sheets arrived from Amazon. I cannot adequately express how amazing these are. I am no longer worried the shredder is going to die.

We moved the lateral file to the first floor playroom. R. was thinking about maybe getting it to Savers, but we ran out of time. He also emptied the hutch that goes on top of the lateral file (it was living a separate life on the 3rd floor) and moved it down as well. I found some hardware for the adjustable shelves and put it with them. They are waiting to go out.

The boxes and bags of books are always waiting to go out tomorrow morning.

I snagged some Mickey frames and some steampunk clubhouse pals figurines from the 3rd floor to put on top of the short bookcase now in my office and to hang above the filing cabinet and the short case. I moved a couple pictures from the office up to the 3rd floor.

Earlier in the day, I had lunch at Julie's Place. T. got to make pizza at his sitter's adult daughter's place with her family. It turned out well and he had a great time.

Once all the furniture was moved, I poked around a bit figuring out what to put in the bookcase. Mostly, I'm collecting stacks of physical books from the bedroom and office, and shelving them. I'd like to get back to No Stacks of Books Anywhere. At least for a while.

Both the trash and recycling bins are full; they go out Thursday, so after tomorrow, I can start getting rid of things again. I also need to make a run to recycle / safely dispose of a bunch of small electronics.
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As I was shredding financial paperwork, I came across this gem from Citigroup / SmithBarney, Fourth Quarter 2007. The author: Mark Rickabaugh, then of Anchor Capital Advisors LLC. "The above information was provided by the Fiduciary Services Manager indicated above. Smith Barney makes no judgment." So, you know, attribution and all.

"The stock market has been more difficult and volatile since mid-year 2007...Our view is that corporate profits will be weaker than expected and may actually decline in 2008."

Yay! Got that one right!

"Consumer spending will continue to be pressured by higher living costs including food and energy, the end of easy credit and the probability that employment trends worsen."

Understatement, sure, but basically, again, got that right!

"the investment sector of the economy ... is unlikely to cause the same level of job and profit growth in 2008 as in 2007."

Three. In. A. Row.! Wow!

So that's all good. They take a swipe at leveraged hedge funds. Mention sovereign wealth funds. And then they say:

"We will ... avoiding investment in companies where earnings declines could be negative enough to harm valuations or the business franchise. Our efforts will be focused on holding equities of businesses that are continuing to grow and remain at fair valuations."

I'm sure it seemed reasonable at the time, and I certainly did not think it was wise then, nor does hindsight indicate that selling everything and going to cash at that point would have been smart. But they clearly missed several of the popular plays of the time (US treasuries and gold being the obvious ones.)
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I _had_ a really thick (like, the better part of a foot thick) folder in my filing cabinet full of page protectors from trips; I use the page protectors to protect reservation and related information on a trip, and then I collect receipts and ephemera in the protectors during the trip. I then dump them into the file when I return.

This year, I've been instead taking pictures of the papers and trashing them, and uploading the pictures (my eyes only) to the trip's album on Flickr. I _was_ going to go through the old trips in the file folder and do the same thing, but ... there was a lot in there. I bought a phone camera stand thing to make the pictures less shaky, but as I was doing it, I kept thinking, this just does not make sense.

So I changed process, and opened up a large (was 20+ is now 30 pages) google doc in which I have links and brief summaries of vacations we have taken as a family (the links go to flickr albums and LJ trip reports, now DW). A lot of receipts (how many times have I bought popcorn on vacation, anyway?) I just trashed. But restaurant meals where there were a lot of people (8+ generally, at WDW), I logged the place, the date and the rounded total. I noted other items I thought might be interesting to me (did we rent a car, for how many days, which park did we do which day, did I get a stroller, etc.). When I ran across something that I deemed worth taking a photo of, I set it aside, and took breaks occasionally to take the photos and then trash those items as well.

The file is basically empty now. It took a while, but not nearly as long as I thought it would take. The process brought back a lot of detailed memories, which was fun. The result is narrative, not structured data, but is at least somewhat more ordered than pictures of receipts. I have a shelf of binders from trips I took by myself with this same system of page protectors; I'm thinking I could reclaim that space, too.
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The painter finally came by! I'm so excited. He's going to -- at least this is the plan -- powerwash the deck, the house, the front stoop, the brick walkway from the front stoop to the driveway. He's going to paint the deck. I am _giddy_, because we've been trying to get him (or another person recommended by someone we trust totally) to come out for possibly years now.

T. and I went to Applebee's. Then we went to the horse.

Later in the evening, I went to the hardware store to buy battery powered LED stick up lights for a couple closets and the bar. This is _so_ _much_ _better_ than trying to do things while drooling on a pocket LED light being held in one's teeth.

Shredding project continues. There is a ton of empty space in various filing cabinets and file boxes now. Consolidation should start happening fairly soon. Shredder may die, however. I ordered some lubricating and sharpening sheets from Amazon. If the shredder dies, there is an AmazonBasics I can replace it with.
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T. and I went to Sudbury BMW to pick up my i3. They replaced some parts associated with the fuel mixing in the Rex. All better now, or at least the check engine light is off again.

Then we went to Dunkin Donuts, where we discussed -- at his request -- why WW1 and WW2 happened.

After that, we went to martial arts. He was in the group, because of vacations.

Track in Boylston was canceled due to rain. So I still have book from the library I need to return. I did, however, get to go home and get A. instead and take her to Merrimack Valley Pavilion for a birthday party. Unfortunately, she got up late and had breakfast late, so she never had lunch. The arcade triggered a series of Why Won't the Claw Give Me What I Want meltdowns, amplified by inadequate calories on board. She cried through half of mini golf but was starting to get better when it was time for cake and pizza, which never goes well. I was feeling optimistic tho because they had cheeseburger sliders, but she didn't like the bun, the cheese or the patty, so I pulled the plug and we went to McDonald's. She cheered right up after she got some food in her and was sitting quietly for a little bit. Life is hard sometimes. I'm going to establish a rule going forward: no arcades for A. She isn't really interested in the games, and the Stuff machines are too frustrating.

Still working on the file purge and shred project.

ETA: I also stopped at CVS to pick up a gift card for the birthday boy; I'd had the rest of the present ready to go for a day or so. I also went grocery shopping at Roche with T.
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Revise Energy showed up to do the insulation work; they were not able to to everything that was projected, once they got a better look at it. But they did a fair amount. R. got everything cleaned up and mostly put back against the walls after. I'm still waiting for the book pickup from Bighearted Books and Clothing.

I took A. to her physical. That went fine.

I had a phone call with my friend K. That was a lot of fun.

I walked the short loop with M. and the long loop by myself.
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Some years ago, I decided I didn't want the ugly metal filing cabinets around any more. I failed. I failed because they didn't belong to me, and most of what was in them didn't belong to me. I did succeed in banishing them to the unfinished space, but I regard the whole fiasco as ... well, a fiasco.

In the course of getting my stuff out of the ugly metal filing cabinets and/or out of deteriorating bankers boxes from the 1980s or thereabouts, I wound up creating some caskets of paperwork. Some of the contents of the caskets was financial paperwork. I knew when I created these caskets that they were that: containers for the dead. And recently, one of these containers over flowed and I decided that as long as I was decluttering, I might as well take a poke at that.

One of the first steps I took was to go through a bunch of particularly bulky financial paperwork which is especially useless and just pre-emptively put it, unexamined, into the recycling bin. I sort of filled the recycling bin with this sort of thing. And that cleared up enough space I could have just ignored the rest. But I thought, what the heck. I'm here anyway. So I started reading some of the less bulky items to see what they were like. After I read some of them, I had a _very_ clear idea of whether any of it was worth saving (answer: absolutely not). So a few more cubic inches went into the recycling. The bulky and the not so bulky both had the virtue of No Account Numbers Or Addresses on them. Yay! No shredding required. The rest of the casket, not so much.

I starting to really get a handle on how much it takes to get the Staples brand shredder to overheat. And this -- in conjunction with the massive volume of paperwork cranked out by brokerage houses in the pre-bust 2000s -- is why the paperwork is in a casket instead of cross-cut and bagged and in a landfill somewhere.

But you know, I have things I can do in between shredding bouts while waiting for this thing to cool off again. I may actually get through the backlog.
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Temporarily confusing the heck out of me, the estimable Nate Hoffelder included this article in his Morning Coffee post:


First, note the date. It is from Boxing Day 2015. There are some used book stores mentioned in it. Let's see how they are doing since then!

Reston's Used Book Shop still seems to be in business and doing well, beloved by many.

Riverby books -- closed upon the death of its owner, reopened by his son -- is open still, with another store, ongoing coverage by WaPo here:


Walls of Books on Georgia Ave -- recently opened in the article form 2015 -- seems to be doing okay.

Wonder Book and Video seems to be de-emphasizing the video, and is now emphasizing its recycling book initiative, but is generally a going concern.

Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill is also quoted; they are also still around.

In the spirit of Burying the Lede, here is what caught my eye:

"Paperbacks, for instance, are bought at 10 percent of their original price, then sold for half the cover price."

This business gem is unattributed.

Half Price Books has always been somewhat cagey about what they pay, and how they decide what to buy and what they refuse or will take to pulp. And used book stores in the past (dunno about now) often would offer more in store credit than in cash. But "buy for a quarter; sell for half" was the normal operating procedure for paperbacks (which is what this is about) from when I first started paying attention in the late 1970s / early 1980s to when I really quit having to worry about how much I spent on books in the late 1990s.

Buy for _10%_. Wow. Honestly, I'm surprised it is as high as that. But still.
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I had a walk with M. today. I ran Roomba over most of the downstairs (not the playroom). I did some laundry and ran the dishwasher. I had all my meals at home.

There was a huge thunderstorm with lots of heavy rain. The breaker flipped in the living room, causing the network to reboot. I had to go down to the basement to turn the breaker all the way to off, and then back on again. Shortly after that, we had a full power outage, forcing me to reset the clocks on the microwave oven and the range.

I am planning a Bookcase Shuffle, that will lead to the elimination of one major piece of furniture: the vertical file and hutch (currently living separately on different floors, they used to live next to my chair but I rearranged that a while ago). I'm going to move a 2 drawer filing cabinet to where the vertical file is, and shuffle a bunch of media cases, so that R.'s CDs are nearer his computer and my files are in my office, and the printer has a place to live, but I get a real bookcase in my office. Step Zero of this project is emptying out as much as I can from the vertical file, which turns out to be a lot. This isn't, "empty stuff out to put into a different piece of storage furniture". This is, "empty stuff out into the recycling bin or donation boxes". I moved the shredded down to my office in the meantime because there was kind of a lot of stuff that really should be shredded (mostly a lot of old IEP progress reports and some old paperwork from doctors visits that I just don't see any value in keeping).

One of the things I am really noticing is that I have old organizational schemes that made sense before I really committed completely to using a password manager, getting rid of my key ring and going entirely paperless. They've become caskets of dead things. Opening them up and getting rid of stuff means NOTHING in there is from the last 1-2 years, and while I can't throw it all away, I can throw a lot of it away.

A. binge watched some Paw Patrol today. We also worked on the supplies and donation lists for school in September. We sharpened a lot of pencils, but this time, I decided we really are going to send her to school with a bunch of those gift / fancy pencils that build up so much around the house. I found perfectly acceptable colored pencils and an unused box of crayons. She still had her scissors from last year, and she had bought a couple pencil cases at Staples recently. Donation stuff (hand soap, wipes, tissues, ziploc bags, etc.) we had about half of around the house; the other half I ordered from Amazon. Amazon is back ordered on a lot of it, but I don't care when it arrives -- there is about a month before we really need it anyway.
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I had a Dutch lesson! I got to see my instructor's fabulous new house; it is beautiful. I rarely experience any form of envy about other people's houses, because I am so smugly satisfied with my own life, but I must confess that the quiet cul de sac, the many trees, the amazing quiet -- while still close to lots of fun things -- and the beautiful house itself briefly aroused envy in my heart. I am super happy for him and his whole family, that they get to live together in such wonderful surroundings. Also, great school district for the kiddos, and kids a couple doors down for them to play with.

I walked with M., after I got home. A.'s sitter picked her up and took her to see The Emoji Movie, then out to dinner and back to the house around 6 p.m. This worked out pretty well, which is a huge improvement from last week. R. and I went to Raven. They now have dairy free desserts! They have boozy sorbet. I was going to order one, but I was somewhat full and A. was texting me to come home NOW NOW NOW. It's like separation anxiety has returned with a vengeance. Which given that she will be turning 9 in a couple of months is moderately puzzling. Maybe I should read a little about this age to find out what's going on.

My car will be in the shop until Friday; the part is supposed to arrive on Thursday. Oh well. T. and I took the car down to the middle class guilt reduction station to drop off a bag of clothing. I'm assembling a bin of things to take to Household Goods. And I purged a file box -- I purged enough out of there to nearly fill the recycling bin, which is somewhat frightening and means I have to wait to take more out until after the bins are emptied on Thursday morning/early afternoon.



I think I have a friend whose son went through this, actually, and around the predicted time frame (transition to middle school). But it's not really what is going on with my daughter, at least, it isn't refusing to go to school; it's not wanting to go with the sitter. And she actually has a solid explanation for why she doesn't want to go with the sitter and I share some of her issues with the sitter (that is, if the sitter had let her nose down into a game or a tv show on her iPad whenever she wanted to, I don't think any of this would ever have happened -- it was persistent overstimulation socially, auditory, and too much sun that seems to have triggered the problem, all of which is compatible with the known social limitations that my entire family has). This is why the movie worked out okay -- she didn't have to carry on a conversation, so she didn't mind being out and about for a couple hours as long as she didn't have to be "social".

I'm waffling on how much of this is anxiety related. Anxiety is definitely a factor for my daughter (and she came by it honestly, altho not directly from me). It's good to have a list of recommendations that includes, don't tell the kid one thing (just an hour!) and then change the deal on them. Knowing that this will backfire helps explain the progression of things and where we went wrong.



This says there is a peak in separation anxiety between 7 and 9! Yay! Right on time!

It is weirdly nice to know that things are not nearly as bad as they could be. She has no trouble being in a room alone (or on a different floor of the house from me). And so far, no school refusal at all.



I've only read the abstract / conclusions, but I think it's clear that the reason attempters don't have separation anxiety is because they are not actually attached at all. Or if they are, it's a deeply problematic attachment where it doesn't feel safe to ask for attention directly. So if your kid is thinking and/or talking about suicide and has separation anxiety, you should probably pat yourself on the back. At least they are attached to you! (<-- And this is why silver lining comments are so Unhelpful.)
walkitout: (Default)
I dropped my car off for service (check engine light, probably Rex related). Then I walked with M. After that, I worked on filling more bins with books from the shelves (to get rid of). I was trying to get another bookcase cleared off, so we could maybe permanently have the access panels on the third floor accessible (you know, maybe even be able to get at some of the outlets and things, too!).
I did succeed, altho not until much later in the day.

I had a nice, if somewhat abbreviated phone call with K. We'll have a month off from calls (sadness!) due to time zone issues getting Even Worse what with one thing and another.

I got a text from the sitter offering to take A. to the play date, which was canceled. I declined without explanation. I confirmed with A. that that was the correct choice. I had offered to find A. some math on the shelves; she was like, how are you going to do that? She had not realized that all those worksheets in school come out of workbooks, and I buy a lot of books and therefore have grade appropriate math workbooks at home. I got the first sheet of the grade 3 book out, and she definitely wanted to do it, despite having a slow start. She did a bunch of addition, and then we took a break to play with the new Lammily pajamas that had arrived in the mail.

A. wanted to go to Solomon Pond's nail place (I had reminded her of it the other day), so we did that. She suggested dinner after. She wanted to go to the food court. I figured if we did, I'd get something that she would complain about and counter-proposed Crossroads or Horseshoe. Nope. But she did accept the 110 Grille proposal. I even managed to avoid going to Build a Bear. She had the cheeseburger with carrots and celery and berry bowl, with the ice cream sundae for dessert. I had a half rack of ribs with cole slaw and a cucumber and tomato salad. Very yummy.

Once we were back home, I worked on the books a bit more. She chipped a nail, so we had to repair that. I got a second walk (the roughly 2 mile walk that starts like the 3 mile but comes back along the path). And I got the books from the bins into boxes and finished clearing off that book case so R. could move it completely out of the library into the unfinished space for storage until we figure out what we're doing with it next.

My library seems to be well under 700 books now; this round got rid of about 300, mostly being donated to Big Hearted Books and Clothing, but some going to my sister.

August 2017

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