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It's almost 10:00, and Cordelia isn't awake yet. I'm a little bit worried about that since she usually doesn't sleep past 8:00, but it's probably just adolescence creeping in and making her want to sleep later. It's inconvenient for me because it means I haven't gotten my coffee yet and won't until she does get up. I was going to stay in bed until I heard her get up, but I got a phishing phone call and found myself too awake to stay in bed. I also forgot my cell phone in the bedroom. Hopefully, that can wait until Cordelia's up. I have had my morning meds, and I put a banana and some triscuits into my carrying bag on my walker, so I have some breakfast available.

Scott's scheduled to go in to work early tomorrow and Saturday. That mainly means, for me, that I can't take a bath tonight because there won't be time to do it while Scott's still up. I can't get out of the tub on my own. Hopefully, we can fit it in tomorrow.

Scott's going to try to get Monday off to take me to my orthopedics appointment. I would like that, especially given the trouble I had getting in and out of the cab coming home from my last appointment. I had an appointment with my psychiatrist next Tuesday, but I've rescheduled that until early May because I'm not entirely optimistic about being able to walk enough to get to the psychiatrist's office. There are a fair number of stairs involved.

We stayed up late last night to watch Agents of SHIELD after Cordelia was done with The Voice. I wouldn't have minded waiting until Thursday, but Scott's really into the show, and he felt he had to see it as soon as possible. I think he also resents Cordelia monopolizing the TV during his very limited down time.

Sleeping is still difficult because of the challenges of keeping my foot and ankle comfortable. I keep tensing up and/or stretching while mostly asleep and ending up in agony. I also can't seem to keep the sheet tucked in at the end of the bed, so it bunches up around my feet. Kicking to spread that out hurts a lot. I'd really like a way to keep my foot more or less at a right angle to my leg all night. Wearing the boot to bed isn't a good option because it's huge and heavy and would make sleeping very, very difficult.

One of Cordelia's friends is planning to do that volleyball camp that they did last year again this year. I don't think Cordelia will want to go. She complained about it pretty much non-stop last year. There were too many drills for her taste and not enough actual playing. Her friend also wants to stay in the dorms (the camp is at a local college), and I don't think Cordelia would be up for that, not when we likely wouldn't let her take her iPad mini.

Speaking of Cordelia's iPad mini, that's been acting up. It shuts itself down at random moments while she's using it. Scott tried reseting it to its factory settings, and that didn't help. We have no idea what's going on. She uses that iPad for a lot of things, every day, so losing it is a really big deal.
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I did my usual three hours in the school library yesterday. Cordelia's class came in and actually did book check out, but Cordelia didn't get anything. I think she feels she has enough books from the public library. I recognized all of the girls who checked books out, but all of the boys were new to me.

I did the usual tasks, checking books in and out and shelving them. I also put barcodes and date due pockets on a couple of stacks of books. They were paid for by a grant, so the first thing I had to do was to look at the packing slips and verify that we actually had all of the books we were supposed to. There were two books in the stacks that weren't on the packing slips. The librarian's comment was that that was not the problem she expected to have. My guess is that there was another packing slip that got lost somewhere.

This week is the last week before our cleaning lady comes back from her vacation. I will be glad to have her back even if it does mean that I feel like my space is being invaded once a week (I like her; I just hate having her here if that makes sense). We haven't really kept up on any of the tasks she usually does, and it shows.

Scott and I watched a couple episodes of Leverage last night. We have one left on the DVD. I'm hoping we can get to it tonight, but Scott might have to go in early tomorrow, so I'm not sure we'll have time. I don't think we're going to finish Leverage before Mark Watches does. I was hoping, but we're going so very slowly that I think it's unlikely.

The deadline for registering for the school volleyball team has passed, and we never did persuade Cordelia to sign up. The last I knew, there were only five kids signed up, so I don't know if there will actually be a team or if they'll send the kids who want to play to the middle school to play on that team. I know that, for Rec & Ed at this grade level, a team needs at least six players present in order to play.

Last night, the school had a potluck, but Cordelia decided last week that she didn't want to go. I was a little disappointed because this particular potluck (which used to be called the International Dinner and now is called the Heritage Potluck) has been fun. It's a chance to try a lot of foods I wouldn't encounter anywhere else. I think it's largely that Cordelia didn't think any other sixth graders would be going. Scott didn't much care as he pretty much never goes because he doesn't dare eat the food.
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I still haven't called my step-father for his birthday. Hopefully tonight. I don't know though. The window of opportunity is small-- He's not home until 6:00, and he's in bed around 9:00. I suppose I could try calling right now. He'd be up and might not have left for work yet. I don't know.

Sleeping in while Cordelia gets herself off to school sounds good in theory. In practice, I'm awake the entire time she's getting herself ready. Her alarm wakes me. Even when her alarm doesn't go off because she wakes before it, her getting out of bed wakes me, and the light from the living room shines in my eyes. I've been getting up pretty much as soon as Cordelia's out the door because I'm too awake to do anything else.

I did my usual time in the school library yesterday morning. I didn't get back to the shelf reading which I regret, but the librarian had another project for me-- She needed packets made up for March reading month. I spent about fifty minutes on that and got through maybe a third of the needed packets. The piles I was pulling papers from were so big that it hardly looked like I'd made any progress at all.

Cordelia's Girl Scout troop has a cookie booth tomorrow at the Busch's on Green Road. Cordelia's signed up to work an hour and a half of that. We don't know if they'll be inside or outside. I'm suspecting outside because there's simply not much room inside at that store. I should volunteer, too. Right now, it's two girls and one parent for that shift. I just do so badly in the cold, that I'm afraid of getting myself into trouble. Also, Cordelia adamantly doesn't want either me or Scott to be there. Cordelia's preference is a small factor, really. She doesn't want us doing anything with her.

We have one week to persuade Cordelia to sign up for her school's volleyball team. Scott feels strongly that she should do it. I'm more tepid on the subject. I think she'd enjoy doing it, but I don't feel that pressuring her is the way to go.

Chances are good that Cordelia's school will be at capacity next year. There are a lot of people interested for next fall. There'll probably be a lottery. The school librarian said there have been tours pretty much every day, not just interested parents but also delegations from other school districts and from the chamber of commerce and the like. I feel lucky that we live in the neighborhood and so are guaranteed a place for Cordelia. Not that they'll be kicking out anybody who's already got a place in the school.
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I did better with Body Electric today than I did yesterday, but I still didn't do really well. It's been over an hour since it ended, and I'm still shaking.

Cordelia said yesterday that she wanted to start doing yoga regularly because I've been pressing her to exercise. It's not aerobic exercise, but I think it would be good for her. Yesterday, she used a set of cards called Yoga Pretzels that [ profile] cherydactyl gave us several years ago, but I'd like to get her a book to go along with it. The two yoga books I own are inappropriate, one because it's meant for people with mobility issues and the other because a number of the demonstrated postures are potentially damaging (she also might reject that book because it's quite old. She doesn't like old books, just on general principle).

Of course, today, she's saying she doesn't want to do yoga after all. The only option for exercise that she likes is getting a new version of Just Dance and forcing me to vacate the living room while she plays it. I'd rather she do yoga (or better yet both!). I'm not sure how much actually exercise she'd get doing Just Dance as she tends to ignore the footwork and just do the arm motions.

It's time to make the decision about whether or not Cordelia's signing up for spring soccer. She's said she doesn't want to, but I need to check to be certain now that the decision point has actually arrived. I wonder if she'll want to play softball or if all sports are going by the wayside. I think she'll still play volleyball, but she may not play anything else. We also have to push her on the question of playing volleyball on her school team. We're not buying her reasons for saying she doesn't want to play. I feel like maybe we have to respect her decision, but Scott feels strongly that we ought to try to make her play-- She's actually good at volleyball and loves playing. We're not sure why she's so down on the school team. It doesn't make sense that she wouldn't leap at a chance to do something she loves.
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Cordelia's volleyball team had a great game yesterday. I felt sorry for the other team because Cordelia's team ran right over them. In the first game, I was worried that the other team wouldn't make it into double digits. Everybody on Cordelia's team was serving well, and they were able to return most volleys. They even won the game they played on the side of the gym the girls were convinced is cursed. They did less well in that game, probably because they thought they were certain to lose, but they won handily.

Scott and I are trying to encourage Cordelia to play on her school's volleyball team after all. She just says she doesn't want to play if that particular friend doesn't. She thinks she can't both play and help her friend improve her playing. Scott is pretty adamant that Cordelia should play on the team. He thinks it's a great opportunity to play the game she loves. I would like to see her play, but I don't feel like we should force her. During our drive home from the volleyball game, Scott was so wrapped up in trying to talk Cordelia into playing that he completely forgot to stop for bagels.

We did end up getting bagels, just later in the day. We bought sandwiches, too, so we didn't have to fuss with trying to figure out what Cordelia would eat.

In the evening, Cordelia went to a Girl Scout event at the regional headquarters in Ypsilanti. She got a ride with a friend, so we didn't have to worry about getting her there or getting her home (Scott was asleep when she left. He was utterly exhausted). From what she says, the event was noisy and dull. The few members of her troop who were there ended up leaving early and going to the troop leader's house where they toasted marshmallows and watched TV. Cordelia forgot to take her phone with her, and I forgot to suggest it. Neither of us has gotten used to her having a phone.

While Cordelia was out, Scott and I got food from a local Middle Eastern restaurant. We did carry out because we didn't want to fuss with eating out. Plus, I had just showered and, rather than putting my dirty clothes back on, I'd put on my pajamas. I didn't want to get dressed again. We were running rather late, so I regretted the garlic sauce I had on my chicken once I lay down for bed.

Cordelia decided that she couldn't wait to see Guardians of the Galaxy. (Scott put it on his Christmas wishlist, and his parents are buying it for him at my strong suggestion.) Scott decided we could do an iTunes rental, so we spent several hours downloading it yesterday. It had finished downloading by the time Cordelia got home from the Girl Scout thing, so we watched part of it then. We didn't get through all of it because I wasn't willing to stay up late enough to finish. Scott and Cordelia would have been happy to, I think, but I like to try to have the lights off by midnight on the weekend.

We want to do something nice for Cordelia. She brought home her first trimester report card on Friday, and it was all As, well, two As (math and social studies) and three A+s (English, science, and instrumental music). I feel like we should do something to acknowledge that. It's Cordelia's first report card with letter grades. I don't think it ever occurred to her that she wouldn't get As, so she doesn't seem to think it's a big deal.

We did know in advance what her report card was going to look like-- The school uses a website called Power School to track every child's grades, assignment by assignment and test by test. I'm still not in the habit of looking at it as often as I ought to, but the teachers update it frequently, so it's actually useful. It also has a feature that lets me track how much money Cordelia has left in her lunch account. I find that much easier than my old method which was to mark the calendar for when I thought she would run out.

I called my mother and step-father yesterday. My mother'd just left for Florida to try to tie up the loose ends with her father's estate. I don't know how long she'll be down there. That meant that I talked to my step-father for a change. He was in the midst of grading papers (he's a professor of social work), so I think he was glad to have a brief break.

It looks like my parents won't be coming to Michigan this month after all. My step-father says they're still considering it but that he doesn't think it will happen. Flying up here and renting a car would be really expensive this time of year. I'm sure they already considered that, but putting off making arrangements until the last minute definitely won't make it any cheaper. I doubt even traveling after Christmas will help.

My step-father actually thanked us for the calendar Scott designed and sent. That's a first. Scott does photo calendars for the whole family every year, and everybody seems to love them, but my mother has never once even mentioned receiving hers, so we've always wondered whether or not they actually wanted one. We've kind of assumed that they appreciate all the photos of their grandkids. They're just generally lacking in social graces.
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I wrote about 800 words yesterday. I think I need to start editing. I haven't reached the end of the story, but I don't think I'll find the end until after I revise quite a lot. I have a better idea of what I'm doing than I did when I started, and I need to insert a lot of description, thoughts, and physical movement.

I also did a fair amount of cooking. I made fudge, this time with more chocolate chips and less marshmallow fluff. I almost forgot to add the butter, and I think that had an effect. The fudge I ended up with has tiny crunchy bits that make me think I scorched some of the chocolate. It doesn't taste bad, but it's not what I wanted either.

Then I made brownies from a mix. This mix had teeny m&m type things to scatter over the top of batter. It was hard to get them distributed even somewhat evenly.

After that, I washed the mixing bowl and made chocolate chip bars. I used a variant of the Tollhouse recipe-- Someone in Yuletide chat said that cutting the white sugar in half and doubling the brown sugar would make for a chewier cookie, and I didn't see any reason not to try it. The resulting bars are softer than what I usually get. I'm not absolutely positive that's due to the change in the sugar, but something's different. It may simply be that I didn't over bake them this time. I always have a hard time guessing when they're done and tend to err on the side of more time in the oven.

Scott had to go in to work at 3:00 this morning. Fortunately, he got out promptly and has had time to shower. Cordelia's volleyball game is at 9:00, and we'll be leaving in about fifteen minutes. We weren't sure Scott would get home in time to shower.

Cordelia's now saying she doesn't want to play volleyball on her school team. Instead, she wants to work with one of her friends who likes to play but isn't very good (she's scared of the ball and hasn't got much power to her serve-- She rarely reaches the net) and help her improve her playing. I don't see why she couldn't do both, and it's not like she wouldn't know the other girls on the team. I can think of three girls, off hand, who she knows well who are likely to play. I was hoping that her friend who's not a very good player would play anyway. The only way she'll improve is if she keeps trying, and she's shown up for most of the games for the Rec & Ed team. I suppose it must be really hard to keep playing when you know you're the worst player on the team. Poor kid.
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Yesterday morning, I spent about three hours at the school, helping with the book sale. They didn't really need me. There weren't many kids at any one time, and one cash register was enough to handle the sales. I spent a while writing down the names of kids who wanted to buy things of which we were down to the last copy. Basically, they paid for the book, and I wrote down their names, teachers, and the titles of the books in question. Scholastic will send us the copies we need some time next week. They've promised to get them all to us by the end of next week so that nobody has to wait over winter vacation.

I bought three books for Cordelia, The Giver, the latest Wimpy Kid book (she's already finished that one), and a graphic novel (I think) called Sisters. I also bought a book of slow cooker recipes. I've found a couple of recipes in there that I think Scott and I would like. Cordelia is likely to hate anything I cook, so whatever. I bought a few books for my nephew's birthday. I was going to order stuff from Amazon for him, but I thought the books looked good. I got him two Goosebumps books, two I Survived books (Pompeii and WWII Poland), and the first book in the Origami Yoda series. The Origami Yoda book is a gamble. It may be beyond his reading level, but the books are wildly popular, so I thought it was worth a try. Hopefully, the I Survived books won't scare him. My sister says he likes scary things, but historical scary is different from horror movie scary.

I wanted to buy books for Cordelia's teacher's but somebody Wednesday night (and it was just one person) bought everything the two teachers had requested. I thought that they simply hadn't asked for anything, but the last thing I did during my volunteer stint was to sort the books for the teachers and put them into their mailboxes. There were a lot of books for both of Cordelia's teachers. The vocal music teacher and the librarian both had stuff wishlisted, but I didn't feel as motivated to buy for them.

I didn't help with the break down of the book sale. I didn't feel I could leave home while our cleaning lady was here. I mean, I have done that before, but I don't like to do it.

I ordered something else for Scott. I don't know that I'll give it to him for Christmas. His birthday is in February. I just thought I should order it now given that Amazon's delivery estimate was one to four weeks. I also ordered a few used CDs for myself. I couldn't resist.

Tomorrow is Cordelia's last volleyball game of the season. Naturally, it's at 9 a.m. Cordelia is sad that the season's ending. Her coach threw a little party for the girls at practice last night (they couldn't practice Wednesday because the school was using the gym). I sent in candy-- Rollos softened and smushed between two waffle pretzels (I usually do one waffle pretzel and an almond, but I wanted to avoid nuts given that I was going to be sending these into the school. The school is no longer officially nut/peanut free because the principal feels that that is impossible to do adequately. I don't see why they shouldn't try anyway, but it's not up to me). Cordelia tells me they had cookies and cupcakes, too. Cordelia even expressed regret that there wouldn't be any more volleyball practices, and she normally hates practicing any sport.

I have to get my act together and get the physical form filled out so that Cordelia can participate in sports at school. That's a matter of getting the form to the doctor's office, having them fill out a third of a page and sign it, and having them send it back to me. I can probably mail it to them and include a SASE. I just have to actually do it. Scott has also offered to drop it off and pick it up on his way home from work, so there's really no excuse.

I wish Cordelia were interested in more sports at school. There's a flat annual pay to play fee of $150. For one sport, that's more than a season with Rec & Ed costs. For two sports, it would make more sense. Still, this is an opportunity for Cordelia to play more volleyball. I just hope that her school gets enough girls to field a team. I know of four girls who are likely to play. Surely, out of a class of forty seven, there will be others. I think they only need eight (It's six on the court at a time. Eight just gives them enough players that, if someone's absent, they can still play. Cordelia's Rec & Ed team has ten girls, but the most they've had at any one game has been eight).

If there isn't a team at Cordelia's school, I'll have to deal with the logistics of getting her home from Clague. If the school doesn't have enough kids to field a team, the kids who want to play are bused to Clague, but parents are responsible for getting them home. There is a bus that takes Clague students who've stayed late to Cordelia's school, but I don't know if we could get permission for her to ride that bus. People at Cordelia's school didn't seem to comprehend what I was saying when I asked about the possibility. Cordelia's not prepared to ride the city bus on her own (it scares her), so I'd have to bus out there, pick her up, and bus back.
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Cordelia had a volleyball game yesterday at 11:20. Her team was playing pretty well. They won two of the three games. The girls are convinced that one side of the gym is cursed because they never win when they're playing on that side. They don't always win on the other side, but they usually do. Cordelia served well, and there was one volley where she successfully returned the ball twice, even diving after it.

Scott's parents came to the game. I think they were pleased to realize that the girls have improved since last year. The games are more exciting to watch now that the kids can often return volleys.

After the game, we went to lunch at Applebee's. It wasn't at all crowded, so we had a nice leisurly
lunch. Scott returned a couple of thumb drives to his father, and I returned the two containers his mother had given us with Thanksgiving leftovers.

Scott bagged up all the clothes he's getting rid of. I'm having to get used to seeing him in shirts I don't recall seeing before because he's found some things that fit and are nice buried in his closet.

Scott also did the grocery shopping. I had him get some marshmallow creme. I'm going to have to experiment a little because I have the ingredients for the fudge that calls for regular marshmallows and not the ingredients for the fudge recipe on the container of marshmallow creme. The difference is sweetened condensed milk versus evaporated milk. I need to check the recipes, but I think they also have different amounts of added sugar (the one with sweetened condensed milk may not add any sugar-- I think that's butter, vanilla, chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk and marshmallows).

Around 5:30, we went to Value World, a used clothing store. We were looking for fancy dresses for our three year old niece who likes to play dress up. I remembered buying a lot of dresses there when Cordelia was about that age. She used them for years and wore some of them on special occasions in addition to playing with them.

There wasn't a great selection of dresses. I think January would be a better time to look. People actually want fancy dresses for small girls in December and don't have much use for them after that because they certainly won't fit the following year. We got five dresses. Three of them are size 6, so they'll be really big on our niece (who wears 3T). We think that won't matter. It will just mean that she can wear them longer.

Cordelia found a sweater she really likes (she put it on after we got home and hasn't taken it off since). Scott found three or four shirts that he thought were worth gambling on. Value World doesn't have any place for trying clothes on, so buying there is always a risk. Nothing costs more than about $4.50, however, so it's not a big risk.

We stopped at Plum Market after finishing at Value World. We got a cookie each, some sambuccol, some raspberry ginger ale, and a bottle of cold mocha coffee. Cordelia was really annoyed that I wouldn't let her try the coffee drink as soon as we got home. I did let her try it this morning, and she likes it a lot. I'm not entirely sure I do. I don't hate it, but it reminds me of an alcoholic drink in flavor without containing any alcohol, and I don't like the taste of alcohol.

Cordelia insisted on watching Revenge of the Sith last night. I couldn't help poking holes in the plot-- Palpatine takes some unbelievable risks for very little benefit, for one thing. I also cringed at Natalie Portman's scenes. I know she's a better actress than that. Scott thinks she was poorly directed.

I wrote about 400 words last night in spite of having Scott and Cordelia around. I need to focus in on writing over the next few days so that I can finish and get the dratted thing beta read. What I really want is someone to talk to about what I'm writing, but none of the people I'd usually turn to know the canon. I'll just muddle along somehow.
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Yesterday, Cordelia had a volleyball game a bit after eleven. The first game was close, but Cordelia's team won. The second game wasn't close at all. Cordelia's team lost by ten points. They came back to win the third game. That ended early enough (with fifteen minutes left in the allotted hour) that they did a fourth game, this one to fifteen points instead of to twenty five. Cordelia's team won that handily.

The team was having a bit of an off day. A couple of players who are usually quite solid served consistently into the net. One of them was sick earlier in the week, so that might have been what was going on with her. Cordelia served well. I think she only fell short once. She didn't do so well returning the ball, but she tried hard.

After the game, we went home and relaxed. Scott did go out grocery shopping, but other than that, we didn't do much.

At 5:30, we set out for Howell to take Cordelia to her cousin's birthday party. Cordelia didn't much want to go because she knew she wouldn't know anybody. She's a year and a half younger than her cousin, too, and not necessarily interested in what the older girls are. The party was laser tag at a big play area. The place had a giant play structure for the younger kids, a Build-a-Bear Workshop, the laser tag area and who knows what else.

Unfortunately, there wasn't a lot out near the laser tag place. For dinner, Scott and I had the choice of a Coney Island and an Arby's. We went with Leo's Coney Island. The food was adequate. The high point was the potato skins. Scott had chicken and rice. I had fish and chips. I didn't eat many of the fries, but I did enjoy the coleslaw that came with it. After the meal, we went across the street and got milkshakes at the Arby's.

There was an outlet mall nearby, so we wandered over there in hopes of finding something to fill our time (the party ran two and a half hours. Dinner filled about forty five minutes). There was a very small Toys 'R' Us. We got a couple of Despicable Me minion toys, and for some reason, they had a cheap copy of Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, and I decided to grab that because I certainly liked the movie $6 worth.

From there, we crossed the parking lot to a Gold Toe store to buy socks for Scott to wear to work. I picked up some knee socks, too. I'm hoping that one of the black pairs will work for Cordelia as part of her concert outfit, but she says she doesn't like knee highs because they inevitably go up over her knees. Oh, well, I can wear them.

Then we went a couple of doors down to a store called Crocs. Cordelia has been wearing the same pair of pink crocs for two or three summers, and we thought it wouldn't be a bad idea to get her a bigger pair. We even found some in teal, her favorite color. Those will be Christmas presents, too, as there's no hurry to give them to her. It's not like she can wear them any time soon.

Finally, we stopped at a game and calendar store (I forget the name). They had a bunch of stuffed animals, and we considered getting a panda to add to Cordelia's collection. We decided, however, that Cordelia's not really so much into stuffed animals any more. A new one would simply collect dust. We found a copy of the panda calendar we get her every year, the WWF one. Scott also decided to get her a new version of Apples to Apples.

We ended up back at the laser tag place for the last fifteen minutes or so of the party, just in time for cake. The girls weren't eager to have the party end. Scott's sister did tell us that one of the girls had an accident from laughing too hard. Scott's sister had to run out and buy her sweatpants and underwear. (That decided her to leave a bigger tip for the party assistant. She'd been unsure of how much to tip, but then she remembered that he had to cope with that.)

In the end, Cordelia wasn't sorry to have gone. She did say that all of the other girls talked a lot about their school and their teachers and that she felt a bit left out when they did that, but she seems to have had a good time.

There was an accident on 14 in between where we get on it from 23 and our exit. We were afraid we'd be stuck for a long time because traffic was crawling, but that only lasted about five minutes. The car they were trying to clear off the road looked like it was in really terrible shape, and it was facing against traffic which makes me wonder.
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Scott bought Cordelia a plastic shield to carry as part of her costume. Cordelia was dubious about it, but Scott rigged it so that she didn't have to use her hands to carry it, and Scott and I both thought she needed something beyond her Camp Halfblood t-shirt.

It was pretty cold. According to Scott it both rained and snowed while he and Cordelia were out. The other kids Cordelia went with (her friends from down the street) all dressed as Arctic explorers. Cordelia was more than a little envious of how warm they seemed to be. She wore her coat but kept it open so that people could see her t-shirt. She also wore my boots (hers from last year no longer fit and really wouldn't have suited the costume).

Cordelia wasn't out for quite an hour. There were very few kids trick or treating. I think we got about a dozen all told, and the youngest had to be at least seven. Usually, we get a lot of younger kids. We had the front door closed, and we had no jack o'lantern. I don't know if that affected how many kids we got. We did have our porch light on, and that's usually enough.

We had a volleyball match this morning. Cordelia's team won all three games but only just. Scott took a lot of pictures.

After the game, we went to Rite Aid for flu shots. Cordelia was on the verge of panic up until she got her shot. She's always terrified of shots. This year, our insurance covered all three of us (that or Rite Aid forgot to ask us to pay). In years past, we have had to pay for Scott and Cordelia while Medicare covered me.
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Yesterday's volleyball game was challenging. Cordelia's team lost two and won one. One of the lost games was so close that it went past twenty five points (the winning team has to be at least two points ahead). Cordelia had some good serves and good returns. Both teams had trouble though-- Apparently they were playing with a dead ball. The referee refused to change the ball even though both teams asked to and even though there were at least twenty other balls available. A couple of parents were planning to complain to Rec & Ed.

The last soccer game for Cordelia's team for the season was at the same time as the volleyball game, so she missed that. She regretted that because the game was against the team she started the season with, but she preferred to attend the volleyball game.

After the game, we picked up sandwiches at Bagel Fragel. Then Scott started working on the bathroom sink. That faucet has been leaking for two or three weeks now, getting steadily heavier. The process took Scott five hours and three trips to the hardware store. He had hoped to get some other things done yesterday, but the faucet took all afternoon.

None of us wanted the leftovers we had for dinner, so Scott dug some pork buns out of the freezer and figured out how to cook them (we've had some disasters with this sort of thing in the past). We also had apples (honeycrisps for the win!).

I finished rereading Rheotaxis. I'm overall pleased with what I've accomplished so far. I just hope I can stick the landing (and get past chapter 24. That chapter is really giving me trouble). It definitely made me want to write even if it didn't make me want to write the current chapter.
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Since I don't expect to have a chance to post tomorrow, I'll talk about today's games now.

We had volleyball at 10:10 at the middle school Cordelia would have attended if she hadn't stayed at her current school. Cordelia's team is all sixth graders, and the team she was playing against was all seventh graders. Cordelia's team lost two of the three games but did pretty well each time given that the other team had a year of experience on them. There was one girl on Cordelia's team who was utterly terrified of the ball. She cringed if it came anywhere near her.

After the game, we stopped for bagels and got sandwiches. Once we'd all eaten, Scott went grocery shopping while I started the laundry.

The soccer game was at 3:00. The sun was out, and the wind wasn't too bad. I probably didn't need my winter coat. Cordelia's team lost 1-2 but played well. Cordelia took a ball in the face, so did another girl on her team, both kicked by the same girl on the other team. All in all, it was a pretty good game for Cordelia's last of the season (there's one more scheduled, but it conflicts with a volleyball game). Cordelia's still saying she doesn't want to play in the spring, but I won't believe it until we actually get there.

We picked up bubble tea on the way home. Then we detoured to drop my coat off at the dry cleaner. We bought some more detangler spray for Cordelia's hair but didn't stop to get hair cuts. Then we went to the Asian grocery to pick up some mochi. We also got Cordelia some brown sugar milk tea (which she tried and hates) and me some caramel coffee mix (which is much stronger than I expected).
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Yesterday was a busy day. We went to the library about 12:30, getting back just in time for Cordelia and me to go to Girl Scouts. That lasted an hour and a half. Then we had a soccer game at 3:45.

The Girl Scout meeting went pretty well. There were a lot adults hanging out in the doorway, so perhaps I need not have worried that I'd be the only adult besides the troop leader. Of course, none of those other adults did anything to contribute toward the meeting. They just watched and talked with each other. The girls brainstormed some ideas for things they'd like to do. Some of those ideas are feasible, some not so much. The troop leader had a craft project-- She had the girls take largish washers and decorate them with nail polish and then hang them on ribbons as necklaces.

I have difficulty with craft projects both on a practical and a philosophical level. On a practical level, I never have any ideas for projects and, when faced with one, never quite know what to do. On a philosophical level, I tend to view this sort of craft project as busy work. It never produces anything useful. In most cases, the product is just more clutter that we can't throw out but have no use for. I try to suppress this attitude because I know that kids have fun making things. I don't want to detract from that. I just wish that craft projects weren't so central to Girl Scouts.

It was about 55F and windy during the soccer game. When the wind died down and the sun came out, it wasn't horrible to be sitting there, but most of the time, the sun was behind clouds, and the wind was blowing. Cordelia's team won the game. This was the third game in a row where they played a team called the Cheetahs. Out of seven teams playing in the league, three are named the Cheetahs. (Cordelia's team is called the Leopards.)

I was glad of my winter coat during the game. I think I've waited too long to get the dratted thing dry cleaned, however. I'm going to need it for the rest of the soccer season. Then again, there's no game the weekend of the 18th. That would give me nearly two weeks to get the stupid thing to the cleaners and to retrieve it again.

We stopped for bubble tea on the way home from the soccer game. Usually, we'd get it right after going to the library, but I didn't feel that we had enough time for it, given Girl Scouts.

Scott grilled chicken for dinner. I made pasta and steamed some pea pods. We heated up some Alfredo sauce, and mixed that with chicken and pasta. Cordelia didn't even complain that Scott put her chicken and Alfredo sauce on top of her pasta. Normally, she likes to keep that separate.

Cordelia has started doing something, and I can't decide if it's cute or annoying (it's definitely unsanitary). She will open her mouth and 'kiss' my nose, getting spit all over me. She thinks this is great fun and will keep trying to do it even when I ask her not to. I probably don't help because, as I fend her off, I start laughing and laughing. She's probably doing it just for that. She does object strenuously when I wipe my nose on her shirt after she slobbers on me. I really need to get her to stop, though. It's getting into cold season, and doing this will guarantee that she gets what I get and vice versa.

I almost did something that would have Cordelia really, really mad at me-- She needs a booster for the HPV vaccine (apparently she was due in September. My understanding was that the doctor's office would let me know when she needed to come in. They didn't). I scheduled it for tomorrow and then realized that Cordelia would kill me. The book she's been waiting a year for, The Blood of Olympus, comes out tomorrow, and I've pre-ordered a copy from Book Bound. Cordelia plans to walk over there after school to pick it up. Going for the vaccination would mean she wouldn't be able to get the book tomorrow. I've rescheduled for a week from tomorrow. (They don't do vaccinations on Mondays or Fridays, and Wednesdays and Thursdays, she has sports practices. She's going to be pretty sore from this one, and I don't want to send her straight to practice afterward.)
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One thing I forgot to mention about Saturday-- The lock on the front driver's side of the car jammed. It wouldn't open no matter what Scott did. That means that, to get in and out of the car, he has to climb over to the passenger side. We'll have to get it fixed. Goodness knows how much that's going to cost, and it may mean that all the locks are going to go. They're all the same age.

Yesterday morning, Cordelia and I went for brunch with some out of town friends. They picked us up on their way into town, and I navigated us to the other side of town to Joe's Original House of Pancakes where we met up with [ profile] booniverse and her husband. The couple in from out of town had their baby with them. She's eight or nine months old and at an age where she's delighted to meet new people. Cordelia adored her. The baby was the big reason Cordelia didn't raise a fuss over being dragged out with all those adults.

We got home around 12:30, just in time for when our ride to the soccer game was supposed to arrive. They came late, so we had time for Cordelia to put on her shin guards and cleats. I should have taken the time to dig out the sunscreen or my hat-- I ended up with a bit of a burn on my face.

The game was, according to Cordelia, fun. Cordelia's team lost by four or five goals. They never did manage to score. The coaches were happy when they came close and when they managed to slow down the other team's offense. Cordelia, as she prefers, played defense exclusively.

Another family gave us a ride home. The kids in that family go to Cordelia's school, coming across town to do it. We got home a little before 3:00, and both Cordelia and I were glad of a chance to stop moving for a little while.

When Scott came home from work, he called me from the driveway so that Cordelia and I could grab the library bag and come out, saving him from having to climb out and back into the car. He stayed in the car at the library and again when we stopped for bubble tea. I had twenty two books to pick up. A lot of holds had come in all at once. I'm giving priority to the things that can't be renewed, and the majority of these things are graphic novels that ought to be relatively quick reads, but I suspect I won't finish everything.

Scott went out for propane after dropping me and Cordelia at home. When he came home, he showered pretty quickly (for him) and then plank grilled some salmon. We have enough of that left, with the leftover chicken from last week, to make dinner tonight. I may suggest salads, but that may be more work than I want to do on a night when I have a 6:00 meeting.

Dinner tomorrow will likely be grilled crab legs (there was a good sale on Saturday). Wednesday and Thursday are problems because we'll be pressed for time due to Cordelia's sports practices. I can cover one night with potstickers, but I'm at a loss for what to do the other night. There will likely be enough potstickers leftover to feed Cordelia; it's feeding me and Scott that's the challenge.
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Cordelia had a soccer game yesterday. Her team lost, I think. The other team was simply really good. They passed well and were good at intercepting and stealing the ball. Cordelia's team played fairly well; they scored twice to the other teams thrice. I could tell, though, that they were outmatched.

Scott's parents came to the game. The weather was lovely, so it was a good weekend for them to come (not like that miserably cold softball game in July). After the game, we all went to Espresso Royale on Plymouth and had tea and coffee and talked. We expected football traffic to be a problem since the soccer game ended forty-five minutes before kickoff, but the roads were actually quite clear.

After Espresso Royale, we did our grocery shopping. Cordelia was going to sit in the store's coffee shop and read, but the TV was on and was, she says, quite loud. She couldn't concentrate, so she walked the store with us.
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I just got a call from the coach of Cordelia's volleyball team. They'll be practicing at Cordelia's school on Wednesdays. That will work out pretty well. I'll have to leave Scott's FATE game (or Babylon 5 game, depending on which he's running) for ten to fifteen minutes in order to pick Cordelia up from practice, but that shouldn't be too big a disruption. I was afraid volleyball would practice on Thursdays, forcing us to choose between volleyball practice and soccer practice. As it is, there are two days when we'll probably have both a soccer game and a volleyball game. I've told Cordelia that volleyball will take precedence if there's a conflict because she likes volleyball better, but I'm hoping we'll get away with no conflicts. We won't get the game schedule for a week or so.

The coach this year is different than last year. Last year's coach is helping out with the team. The mother who's coaching is the mother of one of Cordelia's friends who went to the big middle school. So, for that matter, is the assistant coach. Cordelia will be playing mostly with kids she knows. That'll be helpful if Scott has to work any game day. There'll be plenty of people coming from this side of town to give us a ride.

I do need to e-mail the coach. She asked if there were any Saturdays when Cordelia couldn't play, and I said I couldn't think of any. I forgot about UCon, and I need to let the coach know about that. There are eight girls on the team, and only four girls are on the court at any given time, so there should be enough girls that one person absent shouldn't be a big deal.
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Scott was scheduled to work 3 a.m. to 7 a.m. this morning but has the rest of the weekend off. He made a mistake setting his alarm, so it didn't go off at 2 the way that he expected. Fortunately, he woke up at 2:30 and was able to make it to work by 3. His alarm did go off at 5:10, waking me. I never really got back to sleep after that. Scott came home about 6; they'd had a couple of lines go down and so didn't need him any longer. When he pulled into the driveway, he had his book on CD playing so loudly that I could hear it. I couldn't quite make out the words, so I was really puzzled as to what it was until it stopped and I heard the car door and realized that Scott was home.

We had Cordelia's first soccer game this morning. I think this new team is definitely a better fit for her. She was reluctant to go to the game because she has a cold (Scott does, too. I haven't caught it yet, but I expect to). She tried to talk us out of it, but we gave her ibuprofen for her sore throat and a decongestant for her nose and took her to the game.

The game was a ways out of town, off of Dixboro Road, next to a private elementary school called Go Like the Wind. There are only a couple of places around town where they have fields big enough for the upper grades to play. Starting in fifth grade, they use bigger fields and bigger goals. I'm hoping Scott's available for all the games at that field because getting a cab there would be really expensive. We'd try to get a ride with another family, of course, and that might work because we wouldn't be too far out of the way for a lot of people going to that field because we're on that side of town.

It was pretty cold. I think it was 52 or 53 F when the game started, and the wind was blowing, so it felt colder. I wore my winter coat because I knew I'd want it, sitting there for more than an hour. Scott wore a jean jacket, and I think he regretted going so light.

Both teams played well. Cordelia's team ended up winning by a couple of goals. Each team got one goal that shouldn't have happened. The other team got a goal on a corner kick when the ball bounced off a girl on Cordelia's team. Cordelia's team got a goal when the goalie seemed to have blocked the ball, but it kind of hopped over her leg and very, very gently rolled into the goal. Cordelia seems to have settled in playing defense all the time. I'm glad there's space for her to do that.

Before the game, we stopped at the bank and transferred more money out of Cordelia's savings and into our checking account. We decided that it was better to borrow money from Cordelia than from a bank we knew nothing at all about except that it worked with this particular roofing company. I did a Google search on the bank and found some complaints that made me wary, not a vast number of them but several.

After the game, we went to the other side of town to rent a thirteen inch viola for Cordelia. We'll be paying $17 a month for the viola and its accoutrements. The guy who helped us said he'd tune the viola before giving it to us, but he apparently didn't because Cordelia says it's out of tune. There are two things I'd like to see her get out of instrumental music this year. One is the ability to tune her own viola. The other is the ability to sight read music. (Right now, she painstakingly goes through and pencils in the letters for the notes.)

We were afraid we'd run into a lot of traffic since it was only three hours before the football game and the rental place is near the stadium, but there really wasn't much traffic. There were a lot of people out with signs advertising parking for $20-$25 a car. We saw one sign advertising a bathroom for $20 a visit. We didn't run into heavy traffic until we got to Plymouth Road, and then, it was all going the other way, so it didn't much bother us.

Scott's waiting to do the grocery shopping after the game starts, when the stores are likely to be nearly empty. Later on, probably after dinner, we'll go out and find new soccer shoes for Cordelia. She's been complaining that her current ones are too small. I hope she chooses to play soccer in the spring, too, so that we get more use out of the new pair. Usually, we can get three seasons, fall soccer, spring soccer, and softball, out of a pair of cleats, but I think we might have bought this pair last spring rather than last fall.

Scott made chicken noodle soup for lunch, hoping that it would help with the colds. Unfortunately, Cordelia decided it tasted bad and didn't eat much. I think the cold is affecting her taste buds because apparently nothing really tastes good to her right now. We're encouraging her to drink lots of water and herbal tea, but she complains that it's not helping. She seems to expect instant results.
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Cordelia had her first practice with the new team last night. She gave the experience a thumbs up. There are two girls from her school on the team, so she knows somebody. Scott stayed and helped out with practice, partly to keep an eye on things and partly because he enjoys helping the kids learn soccer.

They were quite late in getting home. I was actually starting to worry a little. Not much because it had only been forty-five minutes since practice ended (I don't know how long it takes to get home from where the practices are. It shouldn't be more than half an hour). As it turned out, they stopped at Whole Foods and bought some fruit and some cookies. I think Scott felt the need to celebrate the practice having gone well.

Neighborhood Roofing finally got back to me with the amended figures for the loan. The woman doing it pinned down the guy who did the estimate and found out how much the worst case scenario for replacing wood would cost us and added that to the initial estimate so that we'd know how much to get approved for. The way it works, we'll borrow exactly what we need even if we're approved for a higher amount. We just don't want to be surprised and be $1500 out of pocket. I'll call the loan company at 9:00.

As to the name of the LARP, I suspect I called it something generic like 'Pyramid Plot.' I might have been more creative; I just don't remember. Scott favors 'The Sands of Plot,' but I don't like how that sounds. Wait, something's occurring to me-- The game centers on who's going to become pharaoh after Snefru (who's dying). I might have named it something having to do with inheritance or succession or something similar instead of relating the name to Egypt. Inheritance Plot? Royal Plot? It wouldn't be Funeral Plot; that's a different game. Why on earth didn't I record the name of the game somewhere?
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We got Cordelia on a different soccer team. This one is coached by a woman (which is really rare) who is happy to have Scott help out and is all sixth and seventh graders. It's also the team that girls from Cordelia's school are supposed to be on, so she'll likely know one or two girls. The team practices once a week, on Thursdays. Cordelia seems happy about this development, and Scott plans to stay at practice to make sure all goes well.

The woman from the roofing company finally got back to me by e-mail around 5 p.m. If I'd known she'd use e-mail, I couldn't have used the expected phone call as an excuse not to go out. She did work up the wrong quote, the higher one. We're happy to take the shingles that only have a limited 30 year warranty over the more expensive shingles that have a 50 warranty. The woman sent a spreadsheet of sorts, so Scott fiddled around with it, trying to find where the calculations were, to see how the real numbers would work.

The interest rate for this loan is going to be high, so it's going to make sense to use the money we'd set aside for paying off the home equity loan and use that to pay for part of the roof. The home equity loan is at a lower interest rate, so keeping that will cost us less in the long run than borrowing the full amount for the roof.

Hopefully, we can get the financing taken care of quickly and get into the queue for having the work done. Scott tells me that the Farmer's Almanac is predicting snow by the end of September. I don't know how reliable that is, but it gives us a rapidly approaching deadline. We really don't want another winter with the current roof, not when so much of it is rotten and when the shingles are so close to giving up the ghost.

We need to call the financing company ourselves and apply that way. I have no idea what sort of information they'll want, and I don't have ready access to most of our financial information or to things like Scott's social security number. It's all on Scott's laptop or in Scott's head. If I could call to set up financing, it would help a lot, but I don't know that I could do it even if I had the necessary information. Anxiety strikes again. Scott can't do it today (he's got to go to the Rec & Ed office to pick up a shirt for Cordelia for the new team), but hopefully, he'll be able to do it tomorrow. If he can't it will have to wait until Friday. Maybe I should see about getting access to the necessary information (though I don't know what it is) and try to make the call.
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Cordelia needs to make a decision between continuing with her viola and doing something called ILT (Information, Literacy, and Technology). ILT sounds fascinating and is the only way to guarantee getting time in the library to check out books, but we're leaving the decision up to Cordelia. She's inclined to go with her viola because she doesn't want to give up on it (she knows it would pretty certainly be giving up on it permanently) and because her two local friends will be doing orchestra. She hopes they can practice together. The boy wants to switch from cello to bass. The girl hopes to start viola but might end up with something Cordelia refers to as 'baritone.' Baritone what isn't clear.

I wish Cordelia had the option of doing both viola and ILT. The opportunity to continue her instrument is important. She won't have that chance again. But ILT is a great opportunity, too. The kids who do that are going to do some stuff online that other kids won't get to. They're also going to have input on upgrading the library to include materials for middle schoolers. They'll plan and produce PSAs. They'll do a few other things, too.

I e-mailed Cordelia's soccer coach, and he suggested trying to find a different team. The impression he gave me is that what he's doing is aimed at the eighth graders more than the sixth graders. Based on what we pried out of Cordelia, a big part of her difficulty with the strategy stuff was that he used terms she wasn't familiar with. She's used to talking about defense, mid-field, and offense. This coach used terms like (if I'm remembering correctly) halfback and striker. Cordelia had no idea what those meant and was afraid to ask.

Scott did confront Cordelia last night about not going to the game. He was not pleased at all. He required that, if she doesn't get on the other team we're trying to get her on, she go to next week's game for her current team. He wants to prove to her that the game hasn't changed. I really hope she gets onto this new team (it depends on whether or not another girl who's having trouble with scheduling drops out). I don't think the current team is at all tenable. I'm also not sure how the current coach would feel about having Cordelia at next week's game when she's not going to this week's practices.

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