Mom just left for the Amtrak station, and she's on her way back to Kentucky.

It's been an intense few days. I love my Mom, and was so glad she came to visit.

Now, I sleep.
Mom sent me this email forward that made me LOL, so I guess I have to share it. (Source: Unknown/viral)

New Stock Market Terms

CEO: Chief Embezzlement Officer

CFO: Corporate Fraud Officer

BULL MARKET: A random market movement causing an investor to mistake himself for a financial genius

BEAR MARKET: a 6 to 18 month period when the kids get no allowance, the wife gets no jewelry, and the husband gets no sex.

VALUE INVESTING: The art of buying low and selling lower.

P/E RATIO: The percentage of investors wetting their pants as the market keeps crashing.

BROKER: What my financial planner has made me.

STANDARD & POOR: Your life in a nutshell.

STOCK ANALYST: Idiot who just downgraded your stock.

STOCK SPLIT: When your ex-wife and her lawyer split your assets equally between themselves.

MARKET CORRECTION: The day after you buy stocks.

CASH FLOW: The movement your money makes as it disappears down the toilet.

YAHOO!: What you yell after selling it to some poor sucker for $240 per share.

WINDOWS: What you jump out of when you're the sucker who bought Yahoo at $240 per share..

INSTITUTIONAL INVESTOR: Past year investor who's now locked up in a nuthouse.

PROFIT: an archaic word no longer in use.
Yesterday turned out to be a much more delightful birthday than I could have hoped for!

The morning started with a visit from my friend and former neighbour Jahan, who came back up to town from Kirkland to pick up his bed. After we loaded his mattresses into his pickup truck, we hung out and watched Family Guy.

Then I discovered that my little sister, Nettie, who is currently serving a tour in Iraq, went on my Wish List and purchased the "Big and Tall" office chair that I have been needing badly (small office chairs hurt my knees). Thank you so much, Little Sister!

In the afternoon, I took the bus down to the Amtrak station to pick up Mom. She arrived on time, and was very happy to see me. I have to confess, I'm happy to see her, too! After picking up a rental car, we went and had a late lunch at Pelmeni. Then we got her checked into her hotel room.

We talked a bit about the tension between us lately. "I know you think I'm awful," she said. "Mom," I replied, "I don't think you're awful. I think you're wonderful. So we don't see eye-to-eye politically, and we bicker over email. So what? Sometimes, bickering's just a way for people who love each other to communicate!" She seemed delighted by my saying this.

After leaving her at her hotel to clean up after being on the train for 3 days, I went home and took care of some things. Then I went back to her hotel room to pick her up for dinner. I also showed her the Message for Obama book I was published in. I explained I did it for Nettie, and she seemed very pleased.

Then we went to the Cliff House for drinks and dinner. I was incredibly pleased by the turnout for my birthday dinner! Ted was there, and Richard and Brian, and Robert, and even [ profile] man_of_snows and his partner Justin attended! It was like Faerie Coffee for dinner!

Dinner itself was wonderful. I had the Chicken & Dungeness Crab, and at the end of the meal, the restaurant brought out a HUGE complimentary sundae for me with a candle on it, while Ted serenaded me with a lovely birthday song. After making my wish (for financial security), i shared the sundae with everyone. It was a lot of fun, and I was stuffed! It was an expensive meal, and Mom paid for much of it... and I am grateful for it.

After getting Ted on the bus to go home, I took Mom back to her hotel, and then headed home myself, satisfied with a delightful day.

Thank you everyone who made me feel so loved on my 41st birthday!
Hey gang,

I will be turning 41 on Monday, and a bunch of us are going out to dinner to celebrate that evening! If you're in Bellingham, you're invited to join us, and meet my Mom, too!

We'll be having dinner at the Cliff House, 331 North State Street in Bellingham, at 7pm.

Hope to see you there!

P.S. -- The dining room is wheelchair accessible.
kevyn: (Default)
( Dec. 19th, 2008 04:54 pm)
Went down to the Post Offices, bag full of parcels to mail to Iraq and Japan and Kentucky (Sister, Brother, Mother). Felt really holiday spirit-y. Especially when I discovered there was only ONE clerk was working in the downtown P.O., and the line was out to the lobby...

Spent some of my Christmas money and bought a new broom at the feed and seed store, so I can sweep the snow off my porch. Also picked up my shirt and pants from the cleaner (seat repair!), and dropped off another of my dress shirts to be laundered and heavily starched.

Went to the power company to pay part of my bill, but the office had closed early due to weather. Later on that payment, then.

I dragged everything home, and now I'm taking a quick warm-up break to write this before I head out again to get supper!
kevyn: (Default)
( Aug. 30th, 2008 04:23 pm)
So, before I do anything else, I think it's time for me to take a moment and stop and express my deep appreciation for everyone who has helped me get to where I am now in my education.
Click for a long list of thank yous )
kevyn: (Default)
( Aug. 23rd, 2008 05:37 pm)

Here I am in graduation drag (complete with pink umbrella) at the summer commencement at Western Washington University. After 22 years, I finally earned my Bachelor's Degree!

(Note swollen right hand, hanging uselessly. It's blown up like a balloon. Mom thinks its bursitis.)

more photos )
It's official. I just got a letter from the WWU registrar's office, stating that they have evaluated my transcript, and agreed that I have completed all necessary requirements to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts.

Graduation ceremony: Saturday, August 23, 2008, 10:00 am, Carver Gymnasium, Western Washington University, Bellingham, Washington, USA.

I'm going to walk across the stage, naturally. DVR is paying for my cap and gown.

Mom says she will try to be here, but I am not going to hold my breath. She just went to Japan to visit my brother and his family, so I know she's strapped for cash right now.

One month and 4 days from now, I'll officially be a college graduate. My 22-year-long journey through higher education will be over.
Called mom this afternoon after class. She had just had more dental surgery, so she was really groggy.

Told her that I would be graduating June 14th. Turns out my sister is getting married on that day to her fiancé, Joe, and mom has already committed to being there for her. It's not a huge deal, though -- it's Nettie's 2nd wedding, we all did the big family wedding the first time around, and they're just going before a Justice of the Peace -- so I'm not stressing about not getting to go.

Mom, however, is stressing, because she can't be in both places at once -- at Nettie's wedding and my graduation. Just bad luck that they'll both be on the same day. I wasn't expecting her to fly up her for the graduation anyway, so I told her to put away the sack cloth and ashes. Catholic Guilt not necessary. She laughed when I said that. She's really happy I'm FINALLY graduating, though.

Dale's in Alaska on TDY, his second assignment away from Japan this year (he was in Malaysia earlier in the year). I know Cindy's gotta be going nuts with those two little kids in Japan all alone (she hates it there). Dale had a layover for a couple of hours in Seattle this weekend on the way up to Alaska, and emailed me, asking if I could drive down to visit. I had to explain to him that I'm almost a 3-hour drive from SeaTac, depending on traffic -- there's no way I could do it with no advance notice. Poor guy, to be so close, and yet so far.

The BIG news, and the reason Nettie and Joe are getting married in a hurry: Nettie's getting sent to Iraq in early October. Merde. Dale also might be going to Iraq next year -- looks like both of my siblings could end up in Iraq soon. I am worried.

DAMNIT! End this fucking pointless occupation!!!
Got an email from Mom tonight:
Will not be able to answer messages for a few days. Received a call from Red Cross this evening to pack a bag and report to their offices in Louisville early in the morning. Do not know if it will be one day or more. Will have my cell phone with. Love ME
This headline in the NY Times is the most probable explanation:
Toll of Deadly Tornadoes in South Climbs Past 50

So Mom's possibly on her way to Tennessee or Arkansas. She's an ex-nun/retired Lieutenant Colonel army nurse with M.A.S.H. experience, and now she volunteers her skills with the Red Cross any time there's an emergency situation. (She was activated during Katrina, too.)

No one has shaped my life more than this woman. I'm really proud, and really lucky, to have a Mama like her.
kevyn: (Hagrid)
( Jan. 18th, 2008 08:57 am)
Mom sent me an email this morning, and it started out, "Good morning Hagrid."

It's the first time she's ever called me that.

I knew making her watch Harry Potter & the Sorcerer's Stone over Thanksgiving would explain things to her!

Well, after the rough start, mom's visit today turned out to be pretty good. We went to breakfast at IHOP, where I convinced her that I was serious about finishing school. She agreed to postpone some dental work she needed so that she could keep paying my housing while I am in school for the next couple of quarters. I am grateful, and told her so.

It was a beautiful, sunny (if slightly cold) day, so I took her on a tour of Bellingham (click here for photos), and then we went and picked up the turkey at Haggen's. Mom also took me to Rite Aid to buy me various household things I needed (shampoo, ibuprofen, stamps, paper towels, etc.) Thanks mom!

Then we went to Kokii's for dinner. Kris did most of the cooking, and while we waited, we watched the first Harry Potter movie. She'd never seen it, and didn't get why everyone kept calling me "Hagrid." So we showed her, and she was delighted.

After dinner, we went back to my place, and called my brother in Japan over Skype to wish him and his family a Happy Thanksgiving (even though it was afternoon the next day there!). The Skype call to Japan worked pretty well.

Then, mom went to Motel 6 to sleep. She was exhausted, because she'd been traveling almost nonstop since yesterday, and had had very little sleep. I'm glad I convinced her to get a motel room -- she was going to sleep on my floor, and that would have been uncomfortable for us both!

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
kevyn: (depressed)
( Nov. 22nd, 2007 01:19 pm)
Mom arrived this morning at about 7am. She woke me up, and I crawled out of bed, groggy and disheveled, to answer the door.

One of the first things she said: "You need a haircut."

I groaned, laid back down on the bed, and started to talk to her -- she hadn't been here more than 2 minutes -- and she sat down in front of the computer and said, "you have any games on this thing?"

Gee, thanks, mom, I'm glad to see you too.
kevyn: (Default)
( Nov. 21st, 2007 07:52 am)
My mother will be arriving tomorrow. She's flying up from Kentucky for U.S. Thanksgiving, and she's only staying for one night before flying back.

I have a bad feeling about this.
As I wrote last week, my sister Nettie is a U.S. Army EMT/medic, whose unit in Kentucky was called up to assist in relief efforts in New Orleans.

After several days of having all their gear packed up, ready to go, just awaiting the go order, they were told to stand down.

I guess they just weren't needed after all.

At least Mom is helping out with the Red Cross.

I'm going back to bed.


kevyn: (Default)


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