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Moving Foward or Forward Moving? November 11, 2010

Posted by Hydy in life.
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It has been an interesting week. In the interests of getting myself motivated to get on with my life and grow up, I took the week away from Bookup. I finished up one project from home on Monday and have been tracking metrics daily, but I have not gone to the corporate office this week. Instead, I spent the time applying to jobs on Elance, setting up an account at Textbroker.com, and working on some personal website projects.

I am actually quite excited about one of the jobs at Elance that I applied for, though I don’t know if the employer will accept my enthusiasm. It involves analyzing the effects of some 18th and 19th century literature on the current vision of the vampire in today’s literature and media. Might end up reading all the pieces even if I don’t get the job. I enjoy Bookup and have no intention of leaving, but if I’m ever going to get out of retail, I have to get the rest of my life moving, as well.

Rich’s schedule changed starting last week, giving him Friday and Saturday off. Which is nice. Weekend time together, though I’m usually working all day Friday and working or asleep on Saturday. 😉 We’ll see how that all falls out over the next few weeks of adjusting.

Health and finances are going on par for the year. Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and then Christmas and New Year’s.  Where did 2010 go? So much to do, and time keeps zipping by.

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The 5th of November November 4, 2010

Posted by Hydy in life.
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Remember, remember the Fifth of November,
The Gunpowder Treason and Plot,
I know of no reason
Why the Gunpowder Treason
Should ever be forgot.

Tomorrow is Guy Fawkes Night. We shall celebrate with V for Vendetta tonight since we’ll be busy tomorrow. Elections were earlier this week, it seems an appropriate time for such a holiday.

St. Ann‘s is still sending us nasty-grams about our bills, even though we keep calling them. Rich will be trying again tomorrow. They’re the last hold out on getting our payments fixed. They aren’t happy with the smaller payments we’ve sent them, but they haven’t been returning our calls in a timely manner, either. Might have to go hunt down their office up the road in person.

Signed a new consulting contract with Bookup. In negotiations with Flowered Intentions. Still seeking my first editing job on Elance. Lots of hours from the B&N this week and next. They tried to give me an extra one today, but I didn’t notice early enough to take a lunch break, so I had to leave at the previously scheduled time or not get paid for half an hour of work. Logging in and out for the Nook counter is really inefficient use of payroll. But the new NookColor looks pretty sweet. Looking forward to a demo device.

November and cold weather is here. Need to sew new buttons on my coat and maybe get a few warmer skirts.

Halloween Week October 30, 2010

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Tomorrow is Halloween and I think I will spend most of it sleeping. It’s been a long week of work and parties, and I’ve got one last one tonight. Spent a lot of the week helping gather materials, set up, and tear down. Sorry about missing Thursday, I was driving to and from Dayton in the morning, getting ready for the evening all afternoon, and then, well, the party that night was epic. Somewhere around 1500 people at the event. Last night was really low key in comparison. I’m hoping that tonight is somewhere in the middle.

On a work front, Rich’s schedule is shifting to allow him Friday and Saturday off, but staying on the same shift. That’ll be cool, for him to have a weekend when everyone else does. I haven’t heard back from either of the jobs I sent proposals to, but I’ll be finding some more to submit to tomorrow. With the arrival of holiday payroll, I have more hours at the store this week. Mike and I are getting things organized for my work at Bookup. I’m looking to take on a list of very specific projects and get more organized to see if we can get even better results.

Health-wise I’m doing fairly well. Staying up for 46 hours actually had me moving with ease and mostly painless. It’s those 8 hours of lying still to sleep that make me the most stiff. Haven’t figured out a solution to that yet. Any suggestions? Had a full zag day on Thursday – nutty pancakes and bacon for lunch, Hound Dogs pizza for dinner and chocolate pancakes, bacon and an English muffin for breakfast. Delicious. But salads are good for me, and back on track I go. I need to do some recipe research and reread the pH Miracle again, at least the wife’s parts on cooking and the pantry.

So much to do, and running low on time.

And Then There Was One October 14, 2010

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Only the hospital to sort out now. Just filled in the paperwork and made a couple of the new, reduced payments. As far as we’re concerned, the hospital is sorted, we’re paying them what we can pay them, and if they don’t like it, they can ::gasp:: Call Us Back. New car is registered and payments set up to auto-deduct. Despite my dreary appraisal of my review, I did get a small raise, and heading into the holidays, perhaps there will be a few more hours available. Yes, I was hoping to be out of there by now, but that’s what I say every year about this time. I have to take massive action if I really expect to leave the store, and I haven’t yet. My own fault, so I march onward. It’s only October, I could still get out before the holidays really hit. Again, it would require massive action, am I ready? Probably not, since I’m sitting here blogging about it.

Excited about my work with Bookup lately. I started some new split tests this week. And two new email campaigns. To provide value to the customer, I am sending out more tutorial videos when they sign up or buy the program. I have also started work on updating the Help file from the old file that Windows no longer will read. I am very excited about that, not only because it will help our customers, but also because I will learn about the program as well. Next project on the burner for me, is transcribing the videos for those who prefer text to sitting through videos, especially if they have low connection speeds. These things make me geekily happy to an extent that’s a little disturbing. 😉

Surely, these are the things I should be doing instead of the store to make all the money I need? But they’re so random and specific, that I don’t even know how to find such work. Need to look closer at elance.com, but I was required to sign up in only one category when my skills kinda slip and slide over three. I think it requires paying them to be allowed multiple categories. Ah well, new things to add to my resume skill sets list. I’ll figure it out.

Maybe the email campaigns will take off so well that I can just quit the store and spend all the time I want working for Bookup, on a monthly retainer fee instead of charging hourly contract fees. And then do anything else I want to bring in whatever extra money I want beyond that which I need to feel stable. That’s the ideal, pipe-dream goal anyway. So much to do, so many obligations, such wonders just waiting to be found. Life is amazing.

One Step at a Time September 16, 2010

Posted by Hydy in life, writing.
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Rich made the calls yesterday. One bill down, one bill corrected, two bills waiting on approval. The hospital specific bills are still in negotiations. Two weeks after application and the loan rep still has not called us back, but we ran out of time today.

I submitted a story and two queries this week. I have decided to find the joy in my writing again. Remember the fun and not worry about the money. It is clear that my career path to Best Selling Author is going to be a long one, so I might as well enjoy myself along the way. I was only submitting to high paying markets(well, high paying for fantasy fiction) and ignoring the fact that any publicity is good publicity. Sure, I still want to see my name in the glossies, but seeing it in a small run magazine is better than no where at all. So, I’ll be taking another look at markets and possibilities. Amazing what one acceptance will do to flagging enthusiasm.

Work is going alright on all fronts, not great, not stupendous, but it is going steadily. Getting email follow ups cleaned up, gathering ideas for new email campaigns. Fixing up MasterChess 7000 with cool new features. Getting ready for the next big thing for Chess Openings Wizard and Bookup.com. Barnes & Noble is gearing up for the holiday run.

Things are busy and good and looking up. I am so very lucky to have this life.

Celebrations July 8, 2010

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The nation’s birthday and my Dad’s this week.  Rich back to work and healing well. The new member’s site launched. The new website launched. It has been a busy week, full of work and fun and friends.

I went to a really nice fireworks display, sat in a city park with friends and listened to well-timed music. We ate cherries, watched kids flitting about with sparklers, and relaxed on a warm summer night.

Dad turned 63. I’ll get to see him next month for the big Paige-family birthday party (my two nieces have August birthdays). I called him today, he asked when I was coming up to visit. I’d love to go to the UP for a vacation, and then there’s that needing money and time thing. Gotta get working on that independently wealthy thing, eh?

Bookup had a busy week. We launched the membership system last week with only a couple hiccups. Launched the new website yesterday. I still am not completely happy with the plain blue theme, but Mike likes it. So, it’ll work for now. The member forums have their issues, but tech support is trying to iron them out. In the mean time, very excited that the new systems are in place. Lots of work to do to make everything shine, but it has begun.

Many things to be grateful for. A very good week.

Back to Normal July 1, 2010

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Rich got out of the hospital on Monday and will be returning to work tomorrow. That puts a lot of things back on track for us. He is back to healing. Our schedules can go back to our usual routines. Paychecks will be coming in as expected. We can get back to looking at car selling/buying and career advancement.

Bookup is starting the new membership launch as I type this. Everything isn’t perfect, but the forum and the membership site is ready for the first wave to enter. Our Professional members first, and then, hopefully with a few bugs caught and squished, the rest of our members tomorrow. He has also added a new chess engine to the program for analysis, that he is very excited about.

I’ve been thinking about my writing a lot lately, and my reading. Lately, I read books for information and I write about my life. I used to read and write for escape, but I find that I am far more satisfied and happy with my life than I ever have been. Nothing is perfect, there are big stresses and little stresses, but I am Happy, with my life, and myself.  Does this mean I won’t write any more fiction, stories about rogues and vampires and death? Not necessarily, but right now, my focus is on other things.

Life is good.

Moving Forward June 24, 2010

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The memorial on Saturday was very well attended. The community came together to support each other and remember our friend. He was remembered, celebrated and honored. He will be missed, but his spirit will live on in all of us.

Rich is still in hospital. But is doing much better today. We’re waiting on the doc as I type this, but we are more hopeful that things are healing properly and our time here may be winding down.

Getting ready to do a massive change to the Bookup website, heading out of FrontPage and into WordPress. We’ve got the membership system running, and a forum integrated, just some code to be played with to finish that off so we can move the members into it.

Life is good, things are moving forward.

All the King’s Horses and All the King’s Men June 10, 2010

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Why would you use horses to put an egg back together in the first place? Rich’s been put back together and we’re spending the week in hospital recovering.

Working with a new membership system and the old phpbb3 forum for Bookup this week. I’ve got it about half set up. Just the details now. Fingers crossed… again.

The market is going down, time to learn about puts instead of calls.

Brain a little scattered, not much sleep this week.

Stay on Target… May 27, 2010

Posted by Hydy in alkaline, life, writing.
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Things are progressing as normal. Currently sitting in a waiting room at Mount Carmel St. Ann’s while Rich gets a Barium test to see if they need to remove any extra colon when he gets his second surgery. The lamp next to me does not appear to be plugged in.  Odd… not that it’s needed, just… odd. Surgery in 12 days and counting.

Shoring up our member site, and shopping cart at Bookup. Still waiting on an integration solution. But the removal of copy protection and return to registration has gone smoothly and sales are up. Next up, website modernization. It is far too difficult for customers to find what they want, and that includes the product catalog.

I’ve hit a stall with writing, and starting my own money-creating blog/website, but I’m still chipping away at the How. I’m doing far more journal writing than fiction these days. About to run out of flash fiction again for my website, will have to do something about that at least.

My health is good, almost back up to previous weight, just a few pounds shy, so feel better about that. No drugs in a few months now. Little aches here and there. Elbow continues to be my bane. But all in all, I’m doing quite well, and can do all the things I want to do.

My B&N Store has added some new sections and rearranged (almost) everything. I think I can find all the sections, but it’s going to take some getting used to. I picked up a few extra shifts over the next couple weeks, so that’ll help.

If my options go well, I’ll have some extra money for bills in June. Knock down a couple remaining medical bills without having to take money out of the investing account yet. I imagine we may end up having to do that, but for the moment, I’m hoping to just take out the profit. We shall see.

Summer is here, life is good, friends and family abound.

Food of the week: (it’s been a while, hasn’t it?): Spring Rolls (not exactly alkaline, but they’re veggie, right? 😉 )