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Tag Archives: family

Bah Humbug and I’m okay with that

Christmas is not a spectator sport. It takes thought, planning, work, effort and getting actively involved to get stooped in the jolly spirit. Well this year it’s just not happening for me and I am perfectly okay about that.

For the past two or three years it has been harder and harder to get into the festive goings on. I witness the females around me getting ever more anxious and stressed as they try and pull together all their plans, find gifts, get them wrapped and delivered, there’s the festooning and bedecking of trees and rooms, the cards and letters, the grocery list and fretting over culinary creations. Increasingly as my physical health weakened I was unable to actively help and felt like I was adding to the to-do’ list.

TV and films portray this idyllic notion of gathering families, all smiles, full of good cheer, games are played, perfect nibbles appear, and everything is rosy and wonderful. The extended table laden with delicious delights, succulent roasts and colourful veg drizzled with shining gravy. This glamourised vision sets an impossible bench mark that many desperately try to reach or exceed.

It’s incredibly difficult to explain, because to many it seems unnatural to not get involved with the seasons traditions, but as I said, I’m okay with it. There are reports about visiting someone on their own, or those alone at Christmas, but I do not, in any way, feel like I am missing out.

On Boxing Day I will spend several hours with my very nearest and dearest, the kiddies will have loads to tell and show me and I will love hearing all about it, Neph & Niece will have delicious delights to nibble and I will enjoy the treats I never get to indulge in. And that will be more than enough.

Not everybody on their own is lonely, not everybody alone feels like they are missing out.

 
6 Comments

Posted by on December 17, 2019 in Life

 

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Pic App-titude

Way back I blogged a list of project jobs, one was the ‘ list Mac jobs’ which involved going through the iMac, my iPads, the external hard drive and flash drives, resorting, relabelling, reorganising all the various files, folders, media (music, movie snips, videos) and documents, the biggest job being the reconfigurations of photos.

When I first started keeping photographs on a computer a mere nineteen years ago, I applied my usual office organisation skills and had folders titled with the event, within was a folder containing the originals and a second folder for any that had been edited for whatever reason, made into collages etc. Slowly the collection grew and I began keeping a back-up on a flash drive and when the collection got considerably larger on an external hard drive.

Then I switched over to iMac with its useful (to some degree) iPhoto app. Initially this piece of kit automatically synced all photos anywhere and lumped them in, to then be divided into ‘events’, later also ‘albums’ and finally the annoying adage of ‘faces’ (it scanned your photos and tagged familiar faces). But the downside was that the photo was held in its library and not as an accessible file somewhere, some events had multiples of the same photo but different size or quality but the info was not instantly there for comparison.

Apple, in their questionable wisdom, revamped and released a new image handling app called “Photos” (dropped the i and added the s, bet that was an intense creative meeting). This new app added in the iPhoto library but as a separate folder and again the individual images had all their info hidden. Also I keep an archive of photos relevant to another project and use the file name as info and sometimes keep a second copy with the relevant ©️ info added for uploading to the web. I didn’t get on with this Mac method of handling images and preferred to keep some photos in organised files and some I uploaded to add to similar albums in either iPhoto or photos. It sounds messy doesn’t it? It is!

So, I rolled up my sleeves and got stuck in, I ‘exported’ each album to a folder on the desktop from both iPhoto and Photo, renamed them with the relevant info (exporting creates a whole new image and doesn’t carry over the originals metadata info, nor useful file name). Copied those kept as standard files in my documents into their relevant folders. Upload photos from my old iPad and my iPad Air, named them and sorted them.

The question now was duplicates. I needed a bit of kit to sort through each folder individually and across several folders to highlight any duplicates and show me the details (where it is, what size it is, what file type) so I can decide whether to delete or keep it. After asking Google and checking the App Store reading the reviews I settled on one. Prepped and ready I went through each separate album and then the complete library and was rather impressed that there had not been hundreds to check and check again. Hmm, a seed of niggling doubt crept it. I opened an album “MIAMI 2003” and skimmed through the individual folders, and found a significant number of duplicates! What!! A duplicate finder that didn’t find duplicates, I tweaked the preferences but still it did not find all the obvious duplicates. Back to Google, read more reviews, but I have not run the folders through it yet. I’ve already spent four desk sessions on the job, I’ll leave that for tomorrow. And I’m yet to start on the archive catalogue!

Still, it’s been pleasant flipping through all these photos, being reminded of things I’ve been to, realising what a bad choice that hair or clothes were, coming across that hidden gem.

We have this technology to quickly, easily snap away but do we ever take the time to flip through an album and revisit a memory.

 
8 Comments

Posted by on October 1, 2019 in Life, Projects, Tech

 

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It’s been quiet ….. too quiet?

It’s been very quiet these past days since BFF jetted back home after our wonderfully restful, fun and encouraging two week pj-party. My days have been filled with pleasing myself between carer visits, maybe fiddling about on the iPad, twiddling some yarn, easing into a computer task, or just feet up watching tv (currently watching I’m Alright Jack, the black and white Peter Sellers movie).

After the past months of worry, anxiety, stress, mammoth personal physical changes, Big Sis’s serious illness, sudden bereavement, Government bureaucracy, so called social services etc the change has indeed a rest. I might even pick up a book!

No news about the yet to arrive Social Worker report, no news from the PIP review form, no new mind bending professional service cock up for me to sort out.

It’ll never last ………. but until then, pass the chocolate biscuits.

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2019 in General, Life

 

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Big Sis, the biggest loss

I was not yet prepared to have to say the following. My Sister died Friday 26th, at 5am.

Last October she had an emergency op to remove two tumours from the edge of her brain (we joked she’d had her marbles removed) little knowing there was a lung tumour. She recovered well and had radiation treatment before commencing immunotherapy in February. She had been responding well despite a few issues.

A little over three weeks ago she was suddenly lethargic and severely dehydrated and admitted to hospital where they discovered she had infections. While there were signs of slow improvement on Thursday she suddenly deteriorated and died within moments of her hubs and son arriving.

The impact of this has not fully hit me yet, on top of the recent changes in my personal circumstances 2019 is not being kind to me and my nearest.

Give a loved one, even if it’s your dog or cat, a hug and recall a pleasant memory.

I will be okay.

I’ve spent the past few days dealing with the bureaucracy of death, going through the emails, unsubscribing from lists, shutting down online shopping accounts. Amazon is a nightmare! Make sure you have your partners email password and account password because there are numerous hoops to get tangled up with. Getting the contact details on utility bills and insurances switched to hubs details. Answering question after question over what’s to be done in accordance with her wishes.

Timing of life is tricky, today is her grand daughters 4th birthday.

 
3 Comments

Posted by on July 30, 2019 in people

 

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Siri? Alexa? No, Aunty

Picture the scene……. You are sitting comfy on the sofa, feet up, the late afternoon sunshine warming your exposed toes, your mind is occupied watching Columbo run rings around William Shatner, you are contemplating when to go make your poached salmon with vegetable rice and a splash of soy sauce, when the phone rings…….

Now I never get unsolicited phone calls, BFF calls during the week during her walk home from work, Bro-In-Law and Big Sis are away for the weekend, Nephew & family would be eating their dinner, whose left to call! I scramble to mute the tv and grab the phone. 

“Hello?”

“Hello you, it’s me” (Bro-In-Law) Utoh, problems? Brain scurries every which way

“Hello you” my brain is bemused, coherence not engaged

“You by the pod” that’s code for within reach of t’internet

“Yeeaaahhhhssssssss?” My brain is reaching wtf mode

“What time does the GP start?” 

Really? No, Hey we’re having a fab time, missing us, food awesome at that pub, etc etc, just straight in with the important stuff, lol.

“6pm Channel Four”

“Ta much”

Who needs Google when you’ve a me!!!

 
4 Comments

Posted by on May 13, 2018 in General, Life, people

 

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