When it rains, it pours

It has not been the greatest few weeks. In fact, it’s been a downright terrible two weeks, in many ways, with the exception of the rather awesome wedding.

The bedbug bites haven’t gone away yet, and in fact actually look a little angrier. But at least I haven’t gained any new ones since getting home.

It seems unlikely at this point that they will be faded by the time I have to get married. Fortunately there aren’t many on my hands, and I’ll be wearing long sleeves, but still. Argh blargh.
Time to look into makeup, maybe? Anyone know what kinds of concealer work well on arms for bug bites?

But on the other hand, Greg woke up on Friday with a couple of bites, and even more on Saturday. (His upper arm now looks a lot like mine.) Cue the freaking out that we missed something in our large sterilization campaign upon coming home. (It was a rather unhappy Saturday.) We spent most of the weekend cleaning the apartment for the inspector and trying in vain to find evidence of bedbugs.
Further research, however, shows that bedbug bites can take up to 14 days (!) to show up. So it’s entirely possible that we don’t actually have bedbugs, and all the bites are actually from the hotel in Florida. (This is supported by the fact that I have gotten no new bites since coming home, and he’d shown only two bites when we left Florida.)
We have an exterminator coming tomorrow to do an inspection to hopefully confirm the lack of bedbugs (or find evidence and put a plan in place). So that’s fun. But expensive. So yay for that.

Particularly so because OMG WEDDING THINGS is happening. There seems to be a pretty infinite list of last-minute things to do and the fact that I’m getting married in less than two weeks is finally sinking in. Super stressed out in general about that and trying to get everything done.
Fortunately, all the big things are done, so regardless of how much we drop the ball in the upcoming weeks, there’s still going to be a wedding. So that’s comforting at least.
(I kind of want to do a breakdown of all wedding costs once they’re finalized, but it looks like we’re going to be between $22k and $23k overall. Which is way over our initial estimate, but rather in line with our revised expectations. It’s been really weird spending money like this, and it isn’t something I want to get in the habit of doing, but hell if it hasn’t been really freeing to just be able to throw cash around on wedding-related things.)

I read an article today about how criminals were signing up accounts on the IRS website for people, downloading previous years’ tax returns, filing fake 2014 tax returns, and pocketing the improper refunds. So I went to sign up on the website… only to be told that the account already exists. So it seems very likely that I have been identity thieved, and I’ll have to contact the IRS tomorrow.
I would just freeze my credit, but then that would interfere with mortgage applications in the event that we actually do find a house to buy. Argh.
(If you want to sign up an account for yourself for protection, go to http://www.irs.gov/, click the “Get Transcript of Your Tax Records” link under “Tools”, and click the “Get Transcript ONLINE” button.)

Hopefully tomorrow brings good bedbug news and IRS resolutions. But I’m not counting on it. :\

Life, climbing, work, expenses

My photo journal has been updated to bring it up to today.
After the holidays, life has returned to its usual habit of climbing on Tuesday, board games on Thursday, and climbing (plus food) on Friday. It’s a nice routine, and it means I get out of the house, so that’s good.
Climbing and gaming photos from January have also made it up at photos.

Traverse party!

I made a bad thing at work. During some refactoring for a feature I built for the last release, I apparently failed to notice that the class I was pulling code out of was a singleton, so I added instance variables in the base class. The feature in question was a login feature, so the end result was a concurrency bug where users could get logged in as other users.
Lesson learned: Singletons are dangerous. Be careful when using them and probably avoid them for things that don’t want state to be shared (like a global whitelist or something), even if they don’t currently have any state.

I’ve belatedly crunched all my expenses from the past year. As expected, 2014 is the year that breaks my spending trend: I spent $11,664.02 in 2011, $12,356.83 in 2012, $13,698.12 in 2013, and $15,821.38 in 2014 (not including wedding expenses).
The responsibility for this lies almost entirely in food expenditures, up around $1,200 from $3,804.70 to $5,081.34 (or a monthly average of $317.06 to $423.45). I guess I’ve been eating out a lot more or something this past year.
Everything else has remained fairly flat, including my $50/month discretionary budget, which hasn’t changed since 2004. Which is surprising given the four weddings we attended in 2014 (travel expenditures of $1,390.13 in 2013 versus $1,787.94 in 2014).
My share of the wedding expenses so far (save the dates, invitations, deposits, scheduled payments) total $2,953.74, which ultimately puts 2014 expenditures at $18,775.12. Not so bad. That’s still under what I was spending in SF (with an average rent and utilities of $1,200 to $1,600 compared to the current $450 to $500), even though monthly food expenditures have more than doubled since then.

Wedding plans continue. The next big thing, I think, is the honeymoon. We’re currently planning a UK and France trip for that, which should be a lot of fun, but argh long plane flights. Hooray for things?

Invitations Done

101 invitations created, assembled, and sent. Yayz.
Here they are laid out in roughly the right geographic places. We have a lot of invites in California and Ohio. (Local ones are not pictured because we’re delivering those in person, which is why Pennsylvania is underrepresented.)

Here’s what they look like (with the RSVP and information cards on the right). I think they turned out pretty awesome.

I’m glad we took all of last week off of work to finish these up… it ended up taking pretty much the entire week.

In other unrelated news, there was a new year! We had people over for board games. We had the best champagne glasses.

(More documentation of the festivities is here.)

Also, with a new year comes life updates. Both the photo stats site and photo journal have been updated.

It’s only day 3 back at work and I’m already feeling super overwhelmed and stressed out. I don’t know. Sometimes I feel like I’m really not cut out for software, or any job that requires talent and ability. :\
There’s just been so many different things demanding my attention recently (particularly interviews… so many interviews) that I haven’t had a chance to really finish any one thing. And that’s incredibly frustrating.

The week got even better when I went to ship back my old phone today and managed to leave the apartment without my keys, wallet, or phone. That was a fun walk to Squirrel Hill and back in the snow. It’s supposed to be even colder tomorrow though, so I suppose today was a less-bad day to be stuck outside for a while. Blah.

Credit carrdddsss

Argh credit cards. Argh theknot.com.

I placed an order earlier this month online (at theknot.com) for some custom playing cards for our wedding. I used the usual online temporary credit card number stuff I use, because it’s more secure. The preauthorization for the cards went through fine.

Yesterday, the order ships. But due to some temp card number stuff, the charge fails. (Of course, they don’t actually notify me of this… I actually have to call theknot and explicitly inquire about it.) So I call them, and apparently they can’t actually change the credit card information used for an invoice. Which is the most bizarre thing for an online merchant. (Can’t update billing information? Really?)

So I call my bank. They said that the charge is indeed not going through, but while looking at my account, they see some fraudulent charges from Brazil. So card cancelled, new card issued… it’s supposed to arrive next week.

So I call theknot back. Explain the situation to them, and they insist that they can’t change the number and they will keep reattempting the charge. (No idea why they expect it to work after it’s already been rejected, especially since it’s now against a cancelled card.) They say it’s up to me to contact the bank to get the charge to go through.

So I contact the bank, who has no idea what theknot is talking about, because of course the charge should be rejected. So we get on a three-way call, and apparently the person who can make things work is out until Monday.

So that’s where we stand now after about an hour of back-and-forth and being on hold. I just want to pay for these stupid playing cards, dammit. Why do you make this so hard for me? :(

I think the lesson here is just to stop using temp credit card numbers. I’m not liable for fraud anyway, so who cares if my real credit card number is flying around the internet? It’d make things less stupid for me, anyway.


I had a Christmas. It was awesome. It was filled with lots of board game playing, as I’d ordered Zooloretto, Love Letter, and Viticulture: Tuscany and they arrived over the break. There was also plenty of Bohnanza, Bananagrams, Carcassonne, 6 Nimmt, Uno, and Ingenious. For Christmas we got 7 Wonders (to replace our old water-damaged set), the 7 Wonders Babel expansion, and Splendor, which was added to the mix of games.

There was, of course, the usual cookie decorating. Channing and I made poop cookies. Here’s my two:

I also did some rather untraditional present wrapping:

So it was a nice, relaxing week. More photos are at photos.

We also made some progress on wedding things. We went with the awesome Chris and found our bridesmaids’ dresses.

We’ll be spending the next week working on our invitations and doing more wedding things. So whee.