Wednesday, July 20, 2022

There goes the neighborhood


So remember that pretty landscaping in my new front yard? 

Did I show you a picture of the lights at night? 

This is what it looks like from my front door. A few soft lights illuminate the walkway. There are FOUR lights in total, including the one around the corner by the side gate. 

My new front yard at night

WELL -- our new neighbor, two doors down, had lights installed at her house yesterday. I feel like we moved to Disneyland overnight. There are MANY lights on that house now (there were none before), and they are BRIGHT LEDs, and the house looks so out of place! And the neighborhood is no longer filled with soft or no lighting, but this garish bright thing two doors down from me. 

All I can be thankful for is that the house is NOT next to me. I imagine the lights are on a timer, and they are off now, but I'll get a picture to show you -- it's not pretty. I've seen some new houses built with so many lights, but it's harsh and doesn't look attractive - at least not to me. I hope she likes it. 

I spent the entire day married to the computer. Well, a good part of it, but I got more writing done. I think the longest sections are over, and the rest should be shorter. I have to stop being so verbose. 

When I went to school, I'm guessing we learned grammar, but it didn't stick well with me - at least in some parts. Thank goodness for Grammarly. It's worth every penny, and after I wrote the rough text, I had 211 issues to correct. UGH!

Lots of issues to correct

Not only do I correct the grammar and spelling, but sometimes what I write rough doesn't make sense at all, and I go back and try to make it work!

Now, Grammarly tries to use synonyms if you use the same word frequently. But seriously -- thread is thread! I think my grammar has improved over the years, but I still get trapped in some areas - like writing in the passive voice. That one is tricky to avoid, but I'm getting better. Usually, there is a suggestion to get around most of the issues, but sometimes, it takes a few rewrites or adding a comma or whatever. There are NO suggestions for correcting the passive voice, which has taken me a long time to figure out. 

According to Grammarly, this is how many words they have checked since I started using it in 2016. I can't believe I've been using it for that long. Who knew? Time passes quickly when you're having fun! And that's a lot of words to have written! The average word count in an adult novel is 70,000 to 120,000. Sheesh -- I could have written 100 novels for the same word count! 

I'm happy to report that my US mailbox service is working like a charm. Thanks to Laura for alerting me to it. 

So I have a US address that technically is a unit in an industrial building in the US, with a "suite" number attached to it. I do NOT pay for that address. Then I can have anything shipped to my "address"; the shipping is often free in the US or greatly reduced. 

When my package arrives, I receive an e-mail letting me know that my package has arrived. I go into the website and pay any taxes owing to the CDN government and $10 to ship the package to Canada. I suppose if there was any duty to pay, I'd also pay that. Then the package gets released and shipped to Canada, where it arrives at one of two locations, one of which is about 15 KM from my house. So I go and pick it up. 

My US parcel has arrived

And that was one of my errands yesterday to pick up a package. The process is fast. I think the package arrived at the US address on Thursday last week. I paid for the shipping on Thursday, and it arrived in town on Friday, but I could only pick it up yesterday. 

The first time I used the service, that initial e-mail got lost, and it took a LONG time to find the package and have it delivered, but now that everything is working and I know where to go to find my package (on the website), everything is amazing. The service is called CrossBorderPickups, and it works like a charm. 

I do NOT order much from the US; this package was for someone else. But if I need the service and can't get something delivered to Canada (which is common) or the shipping is going to be totally out of whack, this is a good option - at least for me because of the closeness of that pickup location. 

For any of you that loved the Dream Big panel -- the one with that flower --, they are going gangbusters trying to find a new one. I've seen a poinsettia and yesterday I believe I saw a rose. 

I don't think the new designs will ever be as successful as the first one, but they can try!!

I really need to get my printer working with my desktop computer. Every time I try to make a paper pieced project and send it to the phone and then print it -- the pattern is slightly smaller than it's supposed to be. I might try loading that file on my laptop and see if that makes a difference. What a pain to not be able to print directly from this computer. And can you tell me why I can scan documents whenever I want, but I can't print anything? I don't get it. 

That's it fr today. I'm off to spin class. 

Have a super day!


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