It rained a LOT this week. It rained so much, in fact, that Broward County closed its schools for two days, and Ft. Lauderdale closed down its airport. Some areas experienced unprecedented levels of flooding: a historic volume of rain exceeding 2 feet. I read it described as “an event so intense the chance of it happening in any given year is just 0.1%”.
It felt like the rain would never stop, and while it did stop by the weekend, it’s the rainy season now. We may or may not get flooded areas again, and thankfully I saw no significant flooding where I live, but rain on an almost daily basis will become the norm for quite a while. Then it will be hurricane season. That’s Florida for ya!
The rain, which I normally enjoy, really brought me down this time around. My period wreaked havoc on my mood this month: I would call it, too, a rare event. My crankiness does not usually last this long nor is it this intense, and overall, it made the week unbearable for me and those around me.
There were good, bad, and boring sides to this week. Let’s get on with it!
🌈 Monday 🌈
It began to rain in earnest, but still we had sunny moments throughout the day and the humidity wasn’t too bad yet. It rained more and more as the day got long in the tooth. Anyhow, Monday was a busy day. I did loads of chores, went grocery shopping, played Diablo II with our partner, and completed this commission:
Our partner made a ham quiche for dinner. It was delicious!
🌈 Tuesday 🌈
Rain, rain and more rain. It seemed to drag everything down with it. I felt useless, sleepy and sluggish, with no energy whatsoever. Eventually, I forced myself to move, and slowly started doing things around the house, such as organizing the studio, and setting some stuff aside to put into storage or give away. I wanted to make more room for new toys, mostly dolls.
Something really odd happened on this day. Sarah mysteriously appeared among the bears!
She didn’t have her hat. I am not sure why she is here. Frankly it’s a little unsettling. I hope all is well between her and Buddy.
Something important happened on Tuesday:
At the time, I didn’t want to get my hopes up, but this was an important step in my mom’s paperwork being finalized once and for all. More developments would come later in the week.
Rosie was being a cutie and trying to get my attention while I had lunch:
So I played with her a bit:
🌈 Wednesday 🌈
On Wednesday I completed a commission and a new banner, which you already saw at the top of this entry, and a commission for Pilou that I’m really proud of:
I also had the usual Zoom call with my mom. You’ll notice I make no mention of work so far. That is because this week, I would only work on Saturday. Last week, I only had three days. Next week, I only have five hours again. I’m not the only person dealing with that, but I am not happy about it. From what I read online, it’s a common issue with this company: most people leave due to very limited hours. I hope I won’t have to do the same.
🌈 Thursday 🌈
To say that Thursday was momentous would be an understatement. As mentioned, on Tuesday, I’d received confirmation that my Form I-130, Petition For Alien Relative (for my mom) had been approved by USCIS. We have been waiting for years, just for this specific step. But, my mom still hadn’t been told that her Form I-485, Application To Register Permanent Residency, was approved. Though unlikely, it could still have been denied.
On Thursday, my mom’s application was also approved:
It’s hard to overstate the significance of this moment. I know my mom spent the day crying on and off. I still haven’t been able to process it, myself –though I did tear up a bit when the paralegal CC’d me on an email congratulating her. It felt more real then.
Some of you know how long and arduous the road to legalization has been, both for me and for my mom. I still lived with fear that the response would be a denial and my mom would be deported. Even though I myself have been sorted out for many years (and a citizen for two) nothing really felt done until I could truly stop fearing for my mom’s welfare.
I wasn’t even ten years old when I decided that someday, somehow, I would live in the USA. My mom worked for my dream and made it hers. We would eventually abandon all we had for a huge gamble and an unsure future in the United States, knowing the gamble could cost us everything.
We have been in the USA since 2001: this is the first time I truly breathe in complete relief for both of us. So many years later, it feels complete. I’m numb and not really having an emotional reaction yet because there were so many times I thought this would happen and it didn’t. It’s hard to believe it’s finally over. I am a citizen and my mom is a legal resident, forever. Hopefully someday she’ll be a citizen, too.
And for those who have heard many times my little story regarding An American Tail (which I’ll retell at some point soon) yeah, my mom and I are getting together to watch it. Finally after 15 years I will allow myself to watch it again.
Christopher had the Apple IIe out and functioning on Thursday night. It looked so cool.
Here’s a little lady I have coming to me. She’s a Pat Secrist doll. I’ve been learning about these dolls recently, their high quality and (if you’re patient on eBay) incredible affordability. She’s a big one, too. I don’t have many blonde dolls, I’m looking forward to playing with her. Her dress is so lovely, too! I’m going to call her Nellie. She reminds me of a schoolmate I had in elementary school, who had that name.
For date night we played LEGO. I finished Emma’s Art School!
🌈 Friday 🌈
The sun came out again!! Finally! ✨🌞✨ But, now it’s very, very, VERY hot. That aside –Friday was extremely productive! I finished three Patreon rewards:
Then I did a few chores, before setting everything up for some fun!
🌈 Fun With Pony Beads 🌈
I’ve been putting off making new toy necklaces. This is pretty bad because I don’t really enjoy a new toy until, at a minimum, it has been christened and given its necklace, but ideally until they have an outfit that I’ve put together myself rather than the original one (this mostly applies to dolls), or a bandana, or just something to make it look like it’s my own, and loved.
Between Friday and Sunday I decided to dedicate time to the toy name backlog. I started by setting everything out, surrounding myself with toy friends, and putting one of my kiddy playlists on!
Sometime in between making necklaces, I played some more Diablo II with our partner.
🌈 Saturday 🌈
In the morning, I played with Reddit’s avatar maker thingy today, that was fun and also dumb. This day was finally a workday! I worked from 4:00pm to 9:00pm after getting all my chores done.
Things were tense at work. Because of the rain, sales were very low the entire week so everyone’s hours were cut. As a result, there were less people available to finish a project that has been stressing all the managers out for weeks now. I was put to work on the floor, pricing and placing merch, and even though it was only five hours, it left me completely exhausted.
An upside (or downside??) of the day is that I kinda got called out in front of everyone else for doing better than anyone else in my first week (second only to my training manager) in getting new emails from customers. They really, REALLY care about employees doing this. I’m pretty shy, so it takes a lot out of me, but I do ask and engage with everyone, and most people do sign up.
Apparently, other employees don’t really try, so when they released the numbers of my first week, the manager wrote a note underneath calling me out by name as an example and saying how I’m not doing anything unusual, only what I am supposed to do, and how others are failing to do so. 😬💧
There was an undertone of “It’s unacceptable that this brand new employee is doing better than everyone else, so, get it together” to the other employees, and another manager said to the first that I did that “because I’m an overachiever” which kinda sounded like “you can’t expect everyone else to do that”. Haha… I don’t know. It was nice but also very awkward for me.
Back when I used to hold jobs like this one, I struggled a lot, and was definitely the sort of person to get reprimanded for mistakes, shyness or sluggishness. I’ve changed a bit, I can do things better and push through better. So I won’t lie, all the praise I’ve received since I started feels really good, but at the same time, isn’t a call-out like that the sort of thing that makes coworkers resent you? 😅
Anyway, I only got to help two people at the register on this day, which bummed me out because I don’t want to forget everything I learned, but working on the floor I learned many new things, so there’s that.
At some point today I noted that Sarah’s hat had somehow materialized upon Toklo’s head, while Sarah herself had disappeared. 😳❓❓❓
I keep worrying that this is Sarah trying to send S.O.S. messages that I’m failing to interpret correctly. I hope she’s okay…!
Normally, after getting up at 7:00am, a day full of chores and then going to work, getting comfy and having dinner, I would just want to stay in. But I want to start making a habit of going out with our partner more on Friday or Saturday nights. For one, Christopher really treasures time truly to himself, and doesn’t get much of it. And I want to make sure our partner is having fun since he’s much more outgoing.
Lately, I’m trying to think of different things I can do with him and with Christopher (as well as for them) to make them feel loved and appreciated –as in, individual things, one-on-one. Soon I’ll be able to play visual novels with Christopher again, and with our partner, I’ve been playing Diablo II. I want to start going out for the odd lunch or dinner date with Christopher, and watch at least a couple of movies a month with him, maybe cuddled in the game room couch.
Anyway, my plan was to repeat the outing of last week with our partner, but somehow he convinced Christopher to come! This is a rarity given that it was late at night, and we were really happy about that. We took Christopher to Salt & Straw. I had the same black olive brittle and goat cheese ice cream as last time:
We also went for drinks at the exact same place…
…and had a mediterranean plate for a snack:
On the walk back, I took this photo of a neighborhood’s gate. It looked spooky:
🌈 Sunday 🌈
Sunday was a very nice and sunny day, even if the humid Florida heat is back in full, unbearable swing. My laurel fig continues to grow beautifully. It’s hard to believe it was once a little tiny branch that found refuge in a crevice of our roof!
Later in the day I went for a walk to get more beads. I saw a cute lizard on the way to the stores.
Though I really went out for beds I ended up coming home with this. What a find! Last one left, too.
After a pizza dinner, our partner and I played Diablo II some more. I really liked the Arcane Sanctuary area.
After that, I finished a few more necklaces and actually put them on toys. I’ve made a total of twenty one necklaces. I still have to make a few more, but those are for toys that I have yet to name.
Rosie decided to relax in the area normally occupied by my bead boxes:
She was being so loud, too!
My new doll, Nellie, should be coming by Wednesday, which has me really excited! Hopefully she has no funny smells, since she is a used doll after all. I have her necklace all ready to put on her. 🥰