April 27, 2019

Just plain unlucky......

If you've been reading here, you know I've spent just over $2000 on repairs and maintenance on my 17 year old suv.  I had the water pump system replaced, the brakes were redone and a new battery in the past 5 months.  The intention has been to keep it until December of this year and then trade it in or sell towards a new car.  A few weeks ago we had some rather warmish days that prompted me to turn on the a/c, only to discover that it's not working.

I think I'm not the only one who is discovering that although it worked last summer, it's not now.  The first shop informed me that Isuzu is no longer manufacturing the part needed to repair the a/c.  So they want to have a machine shop make one.  Those repairs would cost me over $800.  The second shop will send the naughty part to someone for repair and that would cost just over $500.  

The problem is I also discovered that the passenger side head gasket is leaking ~ and probably has been for the last six months.  Maybe even longer.  The repair bill for that is over $3000 with the first shop.   I didn't even ask the second shop for an estimate.  

These repairs are more than it's worth.  That's the simple truth.  If I wanted to drive it for 20,000 more miles, I would think more on doing it.  Instead I want to escalate the purchase of something else.  And have decided to buy a used vehicle instead.  The timing of this is so unfortunate.  My family is coming in a few weeks, and my Rodeo will be an uncomfortable ride now that the temp's are in the high 70s and low 80s.  So far.

I can be guaranteed I won't get much for it ~ and I don't want to sell it outright to some poor unsuspecting soul, who probably doesn't have the $$ for the repair of the head gasket.  

But in the meantime I'm going to be one hot momma.  Unless I decide to fix the a/c.  But I don't want to plunk $500 into it.  Not sure what I will do.  

Love, 365

April 26, 2019

Building tension in class.......

I am extremely thankful that I have one more week of class ~ the last week we don't have in-class meetings, thank goodness.  We are all becoming weary of this professor.  Well, some of us are, and some are right in her corner.  I think I've mentioned her anti-U.S. feelings in class.  It would take me too long to list her "concerns".  But here are two examples:

~I discussed the MS-13 gang video she wanted us to watch, and I told her I was horrified.  She though it had been dramatized to elicit a negative response from the American public.  I said that the girl they interviewed had been a gang member and her interviews didn't look dramatized to me.  And she was stabbed to death when the gang discovered she was a police informant.

~ On Thursday she asked if we wanted the "good news" that she was offered a job as an assistant professorship at a university in Virginia.  On a totally "racist" campus.  She didn't elaborate why is was racist.  I assumed it's because there are more white people there than in New Mexico. 

So, I've lost all respect (what little I had) for her as a professor, who is obviously biased against the U.S.  I don't know if she is an immigrant herself ~ that would explain it I suppose.  But I'm going to mention it in the course feedback that I haven't filled out yet. 

So, what do you think?

Love, 365

April 22, 2019

It's a question of the calendar.....

We made palm crosses on Saturday for Sunday's Palm Sunday service....

The Orthodox church does do things differently.  I've known for months that Easter Sunday is a week later than the 'Western" church.  What does that mean?  

~That the Orthodox church calculates Easter based on the Julian calendar.  Well, what does that mean?  Let's see...

Apparently the Gregorian calendar (more astronomically precise) was adopted to correct the error.  As it was explained on Sunday, the Orthodox church bases the entire year on the Gregorian calendar EXCEPT for Easter.  

Hmmmm, this doesn't clear it up for me at all.  What about you?  

Further reading shows that this "thorny" issue has been discussed, but no permanent solution has been agreed on.  Not much of a surprise there either.  (Oh, and by Western & Eastern I mean Orthodox (East) and Catholicism and Protestanism (West).

Part of the problem is the "fixed" date applied to the vernal equinox of March 21 that the Western church follows, not the astronomically correct date.   If you want to learn more about it, go here...
The whole thing gives me a headache.  I think I'll let the theologians decide, and I'll just go with the flow.  Which means that next Sunday is Easter for Orthodox Christians.  

Are you bored yet?

Love, 365

April 19, 2019

It's the little things......

My Sis (on the right, dig those pedal pushers) sent me this photo this week along with a text letting me know how Mom was doing after some minor surgery.
This was when we were stationed in Japan.
Yes, our hair looked like that for YEARS....Mom wasn't very interested in braiding or brushing, haha.
I don't remember the tricycle/wagon combo, but it is cool!  I bet it was red....

It has been quite the grueling week at work.  Our newest hire was out sick until yesterday.  Since Ms. Loud and I are off today, she will have a little trial by fire today.  But as one of the four of us is on vacation in Greece this week, and one of us was sick, the two of us left had a very busy and exhausting two days.  On Monday I worked alone, but there weren't any doctors, so it wasn't so bad.  I have a list of stuff I will have to tackle next week, as this week was just keeping up.  I'm not looking forward to that....mostly it's checking with insurance to find out why they denied a claim, or having the insurance re-process claims that they incorrectly deny ~ oh, yes, this happens all the time.  Irritating.

This week our GSI (graduate student instructor) reminded us that we will finish up in three weeks!  It can't come soon enough.   We had a guest lecturer yesterday who actually had good things to say about the U.S. in regards to Central America.  It was a nice change from the obvious anti-U.S. sentiment of GSI, which always bugs the hell out of me.  I know we aren't perfect, but I feel privileged to live here, despite the problems.

Happy Easter!  Well, unless you're Orthodox.  Orthodox Easter isn't until April 28 ~ or Pascha in the Greek Orthodox Church.
Over time I have learned a few words of Greek, as about 1/3 of the Liturgy (church service) is in Greek.  Last weekend the ladies group (Philoptochos - "friends of the poor) made Greek Easter bread.  It was fun being around all those older Greek women.  Yeah, they are cranky, but I find it endearing.  They tried to take my French name and make it Greek, but it didn't work out too well.  No, I'm not French, but Irish/Welsh & German. 

I believe the final tally was near to 80 loaves of bread.  Most of these are sold to raise money for the different philanthropic works of the group (support services, donations, etc).  Some were for the congregation members that are home-bound.  One loaf broke when it was lifted from the baking sheet ~ I leaned over and said "we can't sell this one, maybe we should eat it?" and we did.  Delicious.

We're making more bread tomorrow, but this time we'll be working with kids, so that should be fun.  I better wear old clothes...   :-)

Love, 365

April 13, 2019

The Saturday chill.........

So ready for the big day!

Well, they didn't really send me all of them....just six.  And they basically all look the same.  I wish they had sent them all!  Some of them were probably awful, but I would have liked to see.

It's been an interesting week at work, our new employee started on Tuesday.  She is much more motivated than the person she replaced.  She's quick to jump into whatever needs done.....it's nice for a change.  Not that I didn't like my previous coworker, but she was not what you would call a "ball of fire", lol.  I had to work alone yesterday, but it was an easy day ~ we finished up an hour early which gave me the perfect opportunity to run a few errands before going home.

Baking Greek Easter bread at St George Greek Orthodox Church this morning...

As you can see, the ladies group got together and baked Greek Easter bread this morning.  I took a loaf home with me ~ it is really delicious!  It has a spice in it I've never heard of: mahlepi.  Of course, if I want to make this at home, I'll have to get the spice from Amazon, not sure I could find it here in Albuquerque.  

I managed to get through my presentation on Thursday.....I really don't enjoy speaking in front of a group.  There is not much more to do in class now......just one more writing response and a final paper.  I guess I have an A or a B, but I'm not at all sure what my grade is.  I hope she is generous on the grade for the presentation.  

Well, I've got reading to do.....I hope you have a great Sunday!

Love, 365

April 8, 2019

Monday cuteness.......

Chameleons have taken to wearing lady bugs for hats......

"I wonder if these are tasty?".....

Could you move over to the left and tilt your head to the right?  Good!.......

Have a great week, y'all!

Love, 365

April 3, 2019

Time is running short......

Rare foggy morning in Albuquerque....
As I walked up to the door of the office, the scene in front of me was just to incredible to pass up.

I have 5 more weeks of class left, and am beginning to feel the pinch of all I have yet to do before the big graduation day.  I went for graduation photos yesterday ~ provided free by the university (as well they should after all the money spent on the square piece of paper I'm gonna get).  I was tired, my hair looked like crap.  I jammed on the cap and gown they let me borrow ~ but I did make sure to take my Golden Key honors award cord ~ I had practically no make up left, and I put on sneakers for comfort.  Most of those young women had really made an effort to look good, so I felt dowdy and out of place.  I hope there's a filter on those damn photos.

I do it to myself.  Really, I have to admit that.  Last weekend I committed to a Lenten retreat at the church, which was Friday evening and Saturday until about 3pm.  Although I enjoyed it, I admit that I knew I was over doing it.  I really have no idea why I do these things.  I must be crazy.  There was certainly no end to the reading and homework I had to do ~ but I was given a slight reprieve when GSI (graduate student instructor) cancelled class yesterday.  But she did give us quite a written assignment to turn in tomorrow, so I had to bow out of the church class I had signed up for, which is 6 Wednesday's.  Really.  Can't I just consider how much free time I truly have before I sign up for these things?  

I volunteered to take dinner to one of our parishioners who is going through cancer treatments.  I'll need to cook it on Monday and take it to her and her family on Wednesday, which means it will be cold.  I wish I didn't have to take it cold, but don't see anyway out of it.

Next Tuesday I have to give a presentation at class, so this weekend will be stupidly busy.  I don't know if I'm going to use a handout or try to put a power point together ~ which I don't do often ~ although I think I can handle a simple one without too much bother.  But I have to write it first, and understand the material so that I can answer questions.  I plan to take 1/2 of one of those anxiety pills the Doc gave me months ago.  I really hate talking in front of a group.

So, these are the reasons I haven't been very productive here!  

When I get those photos I'll post a few and let y'all vote on the one you like.  Sorry, but there will be no prizes....hahaha.

Love, 365

I get it......

  My face when I realize my 23 year old replacement at work believes I'm a washed up old has-been, haha. Me, thinking, that in 3 days I&...