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Keycon report, with pictures after the prose write-up.

Keycon 27 )
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Today as I was coming home from the grocery store I discovered something wonderful: we have a hawk in our neighborhood. At least I think it was a hawk; it was small and variegated brown, whatever it was, a little smaller than a crow and clearly a predator. As I approached the front steps of our building it uttered a thin high-pitched cry and took off from the concrete beside and behind the main steps, taking wing to a nearby small tree.

So of course I had to look where it came from, already knowing what I'd find. Yep, a mostly gutted pigeon.

Strangely beautiful pictures behind the cut )

I didn't see the hawk when I came out again to take the photos. I hope I didn't scare it away from its hard-won dinner.

And now some cuteness to offset the gore...

Adopt one today! / Adopt one today! / Adopt one today! / Adopt one today! / Adopt one today!
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Or rather, a day of strange cat sleeping positions in our household.

Mina and Emmie behind the cut )
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Courtesy of's photo article on hurricanes as seen from orbit...

Beautiful. Stunning. Awe-inspiring. )

Detailed information about these shots, and many others, is available on the site linked above.

Just... incredible. What a marvelous age we live in, to have such images available to us.
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Finally back from my GP... *sigh* Just a little bit of running around and I'm exhausted all over again.

He's concerned about my blood glucose levels, all right, and has given me new instructions on when to test (once before breakfast, even before coffee, and once two hours after lunch). If my blood glucose reading cracks 15 at any point, I'm to double my daily Metformin dosage immediately, without passing GO or collecting $200. He'll see me again in a month to do my A1c and a fasting blood sugar. (He was surprised to hear that I was hitting 17 and 18 premenstrually with no apparent ill effects, since many people, at that blood glucose level, are prone to doing things like getting dizzy and passing out. Er... yay?)

The mental fogginess and irritability I've been experiencing could also be a result of high blood glucose levels, and he thinks they'll clear up once I get things under control.

As for the fatigue and the backaches, he suspects a kidney infection (diabetics are prone to getting them) and sent me for a urine test to confirm or refute that diagnosis. He also sent me for a back X-ray just to rule out any actual back problems. And guess what I saw in the change cubicle as I was stripping off to put on the flimsy blue gown they provide to preserve your dignity as you cross the waiting room to be X-rayed?


I mean, sure, it's admirable that they're trying to inject some whimsy and cheer into what is fundamentally a grim and utilitarian diagnostic process. But somehow the notion that I was being given a pep talk by an X-ray gown, of all things, made me feel more surreal than encouraged.

After everything was done at the clinic I picked up some groceries at the nearby IGA, had lunch at the Perkins a few doors down from the shopping mall, then ended up going back to the Salisbury House in the mall to get a Big Nip platter to take home to George. By the time I got on the bus I was fatigued, and now that I'm home I'm contemplating a nap before my dinner date with a friend this evening.

EDITED TO ADD: Oh, and if I do have a kidney infection, that might neatly explain the inexplicably high blood glucose levels, since the body responds to infection by ramping blood sugars. Wouldn't it be nice if it all worked out that way?
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A shot taken of the altar during the rite. It was an eclipse ritual, hence the black candles and black altar cloth:

Picture behind the cut )

Very pretty, I think.
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First up, some really cute photos from :

Cats and chickens, oh my! )

And now the results of today's consultation:

Cut for medical details )

There are risks to the procedure. In some cases the sigmoidoscopy can provoke uncontrolled bleeding of the bowel, and in roughly 1 in 2000 cases the procedure actually perforates the bowel, which means an immediate trip to the nearest hospital (which is literally five minutes away from the clinic) and surgery to close the tear. Naturally this has made me somewhat nervous, but to a degree that I find surprising. Perhaps my emotional reaction is being amplified by the fact that the clinic that the doctor's office is part of is one where I used to go with my mother, and being there made me feel both sad and regretful.

Oh, and on the way home from the clinic I stopped at the Bay to pick up some Folgers coffee, since we are right out. It's a hard brand to find around here and I was glad to see it on the shelf. The bad news: it cost me $8.99 for one kilogram, and that hurt a lot more than the doctor's finger, although I was left with roughly the same feeling.

I'm not sure what I'll do with the rest of the day since I'm having a very hard time concentrating, but I'll try to get some work done regardless.
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Because I just downloaded a bunch of photos from our camera.

Cats, an altar, and my mother )

Whew... I just got an email from the HB editor, asking when the issue would be done.


No Easter dinner in Selkirk for me, then.

Oh, and another photo that popped up in old posts to my Photobucket account...

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Just because pink!Darth Maul is so, so utterly wrong.
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Tonight George and I watched a couple of movies at home (Team America and Hero) and ordered in chicken as opposed to bundling ourselves up and venturing out into the cold, cold night when there weren't any movies we wanted to see at the theatres anyway. When we got up to take a break between the films, guess what we found on one of the living room chairs:

This way to sleeping cat cuteness! )

Yes, this is the first time we've caught them sleeping together.

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Photos from Thursday night )

Blessed Samhain and Happy Halloween, everyone! :-)
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We've finally stepped into the digital photography age. *points at icon* Behold, our new digital camera:

Special thanks to Terri for driving me out to St. Vital Centre to pick it up! Now George can get the on-the-spot reference he needs for the comic series he's pencilling. This is a big relief for us both!

Last night I broke the camera in by taking a whole bunch of photos...

Some of them, behind the cut )

As you can all tell, I'm already having LOTS of fun with the new toy. :-)
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Thanks to [ profile] cockatiel_art, a whole mess o' photos from the December Full Moon ritual at my place. We had planned to do an apartment warding, but what with the flu and all I just couldn't raise that much energy, so we settled for charging some bundles of spices for mulling wine/juice instead, as well as formally thanking Bast for Her aid in helping Gabriel recover (Robin spoke to his owner, and he's apparently doing just fine now).

So without further ado...

December Full Moon Ritual Pics )

We had four people for the rite -- the same four people who have been to almost every Full Moon ritual since I started running them back in March or April -- and on this night we resolved that we are in fact a working group, the Full Moon Circle. We will still have open Full Moon rituals which all are welcome to attend, but we are the core members who have dedicated ourselves to worshipping and working as a unit. This is a big step, but one I feel confident we are all ready to take.
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George and I actually had two wedding ceremonies -- first a Wiccan service at Beltane in the Park 1995 where we were legally married by a marriage commissioner, and again a year later, when we renewed our vows in a more traditional church service. These photos are from the church service and the reception that followed.

On May 4th, 1996... )
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I got this roll developed just recently, even though it was shot in the year 2000, and couldn't believe what a treasure trove it was.

Cuteness and conventions ahoy! )
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I've updated the Bast healing rite entry on [ profile] wiccanmoons with pictures of the altar, which can be found here:

I've also got some shots of the big snowfall a couple of weeks back, plus one of the plush toy kitty I got at Samhain during Lee's cunning little game.

Winter Wonderland and Cute Plush Kitty )

These photos were part of a set I took to Shoppers Drug Mart to be developed, and I got a wonderful surprise: when they develop your photos, they not only give you a contact sheet (little images to help you sort through the negatives), but ALSO a CD with all the photos on it so they're easy to upload/email/etc. Bonus! I think I'll be taking all my photos to Shoppers for development in the future!

I also picked up some photos from PharmaPlus, from an old disposable camera that's been kicking around for the last several years, and got a shock of delight so intense that it made my heart soar and filled me with pure bliss: not only did the roll contain images from a business trip to the San Diego ComiCon back in (I think) 1996, but also a few images of Micawber that I didn't know we had. Such a lovely boy... I'll have to scan them in and post them when I get the chance. They brought back such wonderful, wonderful memories, I can barely describe it. *sighs happily*

The money orders have now been sent to pay for the monitor and the Kathy Smith step training video we bought on eBay, and I picked up some badly needed medication plus some Christmas gift wrapping supplies, so that when I meet with Holly tomorrow afternoon I can give her her Yule present.

A good Witches Meetup tonight -- five people showed up in total, and when I left the meeting a bit early an intense discussion was going on about various spell techniques. All in all, a very good day, even if I did get up later than I would have liked.
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The photos from and around the time of K's belly blessing ritual that I just got developed...

Warning! Lots of pictures! )