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Blow the Fence Down

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We have had high winds this week. We never lost power. I considered that a win.

Until I let my dog out last night, and she didn’t return.

That is when I discovered we had a fence down.

What the wooden privacy fence used to look like.

After. Where, oh where, has my little dog gone? Oh where, oh where can she be?

Still, I am going to count us as pretty fortunate considering the damage others have sustained.

And I recovered my escaped dog within an hour, unharmed.

If you want to read more about how we had a (previously) fully-fenced backyard, but still cannot keep our dogs contained within it, you should check out this post: https://imnotstalkingyou.com/2013/06/25/a-determined-dog-cannot-be-fenced/

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From the broken mind of Jennifer Friess, the joining of hearts & souls…
NOW AVAILABLE! Troll Gurl and the Cursed Kingdom

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The Automated DJ Has Left the Building

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Located at Point Iroquois Lighthouse, Lake Superior

Located at Point Iroquois Lighthouse, Lake Superior

The other day I turned on my weather radio so I could listen to it (or zone out, as is usually the case) while I folded laundry, as I usually do.

I was in for a rude awakening.

The voice on my weather radio was just not the same.

Now, let me give you some background, some history.

I have a habit of obsessing about the voices that come out of my radio. For more background, click here. Listening for a DJ I like to back announce a song is sometimes just as good as waiting for a favorite song. I still remember the names of some of them I listened to 25 years ago. I have looked up their Facebook pages and befriended them. One of them even stalks me (who know who you are). This phenomenon was partially responsible for me studying radio and TV production in college. I have a story outline based off of one of them I wrote years ago, and someday soon I will fill it in with actual nouns and adjectives and verbs and junk. When a favorite DJ would leave a station (which they frequently do, a good reason for me not to go into that line of work), I would get very depressed.

This is what happened with my weather station.

Well, sort of.

I had gotten used to the old voice. He was friendly and reliable and reasonably easy to understand…for a computer.

Yes. I admit it. As I felt depression crushing me as I listened to the stranger on my radio station, I realized it was true. I had become attached to a voice coming through my radio that I was fully aware was automated all along. When I was first researching a weather radio before I purchased one ten years ago (Ya, I’m a giant nerd.),  I found on the NWS website where they blatantly tell you all about the various versions and upgrades on their voices.

I don’t like this new voice. It is too smooth. For a sample, click here. I liked that the old one stumbled over a few words now and then, sort of a digital pixelated hiccup. Even computers are allowed to mess up sometimes. We are only human, right? Oh, wait…

I even messaged my local weather service office in Pontiac, MI to find out what they changed. Their response:

We switched over to a new digital broadcasting system. The old system was the Console Replacement System (CRS) and the new one is the Broadcast Message Handler (BMH).

That means they went from the voice named Tom to the voice named Paul (There was also another Paul several years ago.). I am sure it is faster and will save more lives in an emergency and blah, blah, blah. But I will miss Tom dearly.

Unlike other DJs, it is unlikely I will find him up and down the dial.

Oh, did I mention that I am watching WKRP in Cincinnati these days. Probably the rest of the formula to why I wanted to study radio.

Have you seen that Dr. Johnny Fever?

Johnny freaks out over a tornado on WKRP in Cincinnati.

Johnny freaks out over a tornado on WKRP in Cincinnati.

Follow the romantic entanglements of The Riley Sisters in my books:
Be Careful What You Wish ForAVAILABLE NOW!
When You Least Expect It THE CONTINUING ROMANCE!
The Wind Could Blow a BugWHERE IT ALL BEGAN!

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Trick-or-Treat

A Friday post? Gosh, I haven’t seen one of those roll through in a long time.

But, it is a special occasion.

Ah!  A ghost!  A Charlie Brown ghost.

Ah! A ghost! A Charlie Brown ghost.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!

Avril Lavigne.  Best part is they are all my own clothes...

Avril Lavigne. Best part is they are all my own clothes…

And if everything is going according to plan, which it never does, I should be leaving work early and heading home right about now.

I think he might be a little scared...

I think he might be a little scared…

The weather forecast in Michigan could not be worse for Trick-or-Treating. There will be rain, wind, cold temperatures, and maybe snow.

...of my custom Mr. Ugly-Man pumpkin.

…of my custom Mr. Ugly-Man pumpkin.

Have a safe, fun night. I know I will be ending mine with a nice, hot pizza.

Personal Development

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In my spare unemployed time, I have been working on personal development. It wasn’t a conscious decision. I just have more time to find out about these opportunities being offered. And I don’t have to rush home from a job an hour away to get to them on time. And I am not too exhausted from working 40 hours a week, commuting 10 hours a week, and running my mom’s errands, and doing housework to attend.

I have gone to meetings about genealogy. One was about the basics, which I am already beyond. But that meeting did provide me with the suggestion for the new software I am currently using. The next one I went to was a tour of genealogy resources at the Lenawee County Historical Museum. It helped, but I would need to dive in myself to really understand what is there and how it is indexed, organized, etc. But it was very nice to get out of the house child-free and spend a few hours with other adults who talk about adult things. Of course, recently I haven’t had time to work on my family tree stuff. Spring cleaning is taking up all my time.

Last week I went to SKYWARN weather spotter training. The website says that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s “National Weather Service (NWS), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, established SKYWARN.” When I went I wasn’t even sure if it was to be a weather spotter, but it turns out it was. If you read Tuesday’s post, you know I have an interest in severe weather. I don’t feel any more knowledgeable than before I went, but they gave me an awesome weather booklet and the secret spotter call-in number. They spent a lot of time on storm cloud formation. Which is good, except I live in the city and am surrounded by trees and other houses. By the time I see a cloud it is usually directly overhead. So, I feel like I could be a more useful spotter if I lived out in the country, but whatever. It makes me feel important.

I love how the booklet says things like “Personal safety is the primary objective of every spotter.” But then the booklet is filled with awesome photos of tornadoes people took while driving around in their cars in weather they shouldn’t be out in. It is like they give you the disclaimer so that they won’t get sued, but they know if you are a weather spotter you have an interest in this and will probably be out in a storm anyway.

One thing I always said I would do if I had free time was to volunteer at the Lenawee Humane Society. But I can’t really do that right now because I would have to take my son with me. Plus, I am sour on LHS at the moment (not their dog care skills or facility, just how they run their fundraising events). And I am sour on dogs, because Parker is becoming unbearable to live with.

My husband is doing personal development too. He has never been confident in his reading/writing skills. He believes the public school system failed him, and I think he may be right (more about our complaints about the school system in a future post). I knew this, so last fall when I saw an ad in the newspaper about free tutoring opportunities, I showed it to him. He got very excited. He called a few days later. Normally he would procrastinate and probably never call at all. Over the years, he has tried buying workbooks, etc., to try to teach himself, but with no real success. They gave him a test at the literacy center. He actually tested high enough that he wasn’t eligible for the program. But one of the tutors was nice enough to agree to help him anyway. See, he reads and writes well enough to get by. But with his new job, it would be great if his skills were elevated to say, what you should know when you graduate high school (which he did). Details are important in his new job. I am hoping the tutoring helps him with that.

All this and raising an almost 18 month-old too. Oy. I guess if you are positive (as in attitude) about the things you like, opportunities to expand your knowledge of them will come along. Who knows, maybe this year I will get to attend Word Camp. (That would be awesome!)

I’m not stalking you. is NOW ON FACEBOOK! “Like” that I’m not stalking you and get an update when there is a new post to read. (It is sort of like YOU are stalking ME.)

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