Tuesday, October 17, 2017

AOL Instant Messenger Will Be Discontinued

PSA: AOL Instant Messenger will be discontinued.  For those who haven't heard and didn't get the email notice, AIM ( AOL Instant Messenger ) is being canned and dropped as of December 15, 2017.  AOHell is getting rid of it completely.  Per their email:

"We see that you've used AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) in the past, so we wanted to let you know that AIM will be discontinued and will no longer work as of December 15, 2017.

Before December 15, you can continue to use the service. After December 15, you will no longer have access to AIM and your data will be deleted. If you use an @aim.com email address, your email account will not be affected and you will still be able to send and receive email as usual."
So basically everyone who kept it connected via linked accounts so they could keep in touch with friends via an instant messaging service might want to reach out and update contacts before you lose them.  I had a feeling it would happen with recent changes they made, trying to force people to use and pay for the service.
My understanding is that they are disallowing outside connections to any linked accounts.  Which means Trillian and other things like Facebook Messaging will be unable to access the AOHell buddy list content any longer, or interact with anyone using it.  You will be unable to save or export your buddy list.
You can keep in contact with me via Trillian and Discord at the following:
Trillian - leopardwolf
Discord - LeopardWolf#7905

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You can see AOL ( now Oath )'s FAQ about it here:

https://help.aol.com/articles/aim-discontinued

For those of us who have used AIM since 1997 and before ( when still with AOHell as an ISP ), this really, really sucks.  So much for nostalgia and maintaining old connections.  Thanks for screwing us all over Oath.  I highly doubt you will develop anything more iconic or life changing than the original AIM platform has been.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Back In The Saddle

Apologies for the delays in more frequent updates. In wake of all the stress and preparation for my Disability hearing, the summer weather really decided to kick my ass and has caused reoccurring flairups of my autoimmune and neurocardio problems and related symptoms. I am still sick, but the bulk of the stressful events triggering symptoms has passed, so hopefully my body will stop freaking out so much. The summer heat is finally breaking a bit and there is more breeze instead of still, hot air. Once it cools more, I hope things will be more manageable.

A lot of reoccurring migraine activity and blurred vision or related issues from my Sjogren's has made it difficult to focus on creative things both visually and mentally.  Even as I write this, I am seeing halos and haze and have to take frequent breaks to rest.  During the downtime I have been working on various little things as able. I am looking forward to sharing them all.  It might just be a combination of some photos and short writeups to begin with, but I am hoping to generate enough content during my "stable" periods to help compensate for the downtime when I get sick in the future.  That has been the biggest issue I have faced, the gaps in activity and posting new content.

I want to be able to get to a place where I am able to make updates more frequently even when I am really sick, to break the pattern of falling behind every time I am.  It has been a slow learning process to find the middle ground. I really appreciate everyone's continued support and encouragement while I try and find that happy balance between being a creator and living with chronic illness.

Upcoming topics will include art and creative things, gardening ( in the limited capacity I can handle ), biology and botany geekery, bonsai, raku, and discussions about small ecosystems found in aquariums, terrariums, and updates about mine and plans for upcoming development.

Hope everyone is well.

Monday, September 11, 2017

NOTICE: Legacy Livestream Streams/Videos Being Deleted End Of September 2017

This is a heads up for anyone who is currently using, or has used the legacy free Livestream accounts and may have streams/videos there that they want to save. I just logged in to mine to find a message saying they were cleaning up the servers and deleting any old content not saved by the end of the month.  If you have anything stored there that you want to keep, I suggest logging in and saving the videos and downloading them just in case.  I never got any email or other warning they planned to do this, so wanted to spread the word so no one lost their content.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Helping

Went and donated dog and cat food, litter, and some assorted toys and care products to the LA SPCA today to help with hurricane relief efforts. Let the strong young men volunteering there do all the lifting.  They were thankful for the help. Just wish I could do more.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Quick Update

We are safe.  There has been a ton of rain in New Orleans and TX in areas where our family is, but so far we have been very fortunate and escaped severe storm damage and flooding. Memories of Katrina all over again.  Praying all my friends and their families nearby are safe, My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone effected by Hurricane Harvey. Looking into helping with donations and rescue efforts in every little way we can.

In other news, had my Disability Hearing today. It went well, I think. Now I just have to wait for the judge to issue the decision.  Praying it will turn out okay.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Quick Update, Disability Hearing

Still alive.  Been really sick on and off multiple times with flairups, including falls and passing out. Started as soon as the temperatures began to get warmer outside.  Been borderline heat stroke every day since. Can't get anything done because I overheat too easy, even inside with the AC running full blast. The little energy I have has been totally devoted to preparing for my Disability Hearing at the end of August.  I haven't really been online on FB or anywhere else at all since April or May, so if I missed anything major, I apologize.  Thank you all for the birthday wishes back in May, they helped cheer me up while I was sick. Hoping it cools off outside soon. I hope all is well for all of you. If I missed anything you want me to know about, please share.  I will catch up as I am able to, but probably won't be real active till after my Disability Hearing on August 31st.  Positive thoughts and prayers for a positive outcome are appreciated. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

In Boxes, Crafty Things, Dogs

In Boxes
So busy.  Driving back and forth to Texas, trying to find the energies and lack of pain to sort and pack up more things.  Helped Mike get settled in to the new place. Things didn't go the way we originally planned; when do they ever?  Lack of Uhaul Northeast side meant all of our belongings and furniture that was at his grandmother's ended up having to stay there.  Which meant he only came with what he could cram and Tetris into his car, most of that room being taken up by his work computers and chair and work necessities, and a handful of other stuff he could jam in.  So once again we started with nothing and had to get new furniture and things, with the hope his family will go and take pictures of the stuff we left and sell it so we can get some money back for it, but the likelihood of that happening anytime soon is slim. Lots of stress, the move almost not happening because Mike's pay drops so drastically from the supposed "cost of living" difference. Which is horrible that companies can do it and base it however the hell they base it off local rent costs or whatever, because when you base it off a city that has reduced prices because of the nearby military base then of course that might be cheaper - only if you live on the base and have access to the reduced base prices. But the rent isn't. And milk and other things still cost as much when you are on civilian side.  It's disgusting that by relocating to get closer to work, it basically set him back to his beginning pay rate, removing 3yrs or so worth of raises and a promotion to a higher position.  But job opportunities and affordability long term is better, so it was worth doing. It just means things are going to be insanely tight for a while.

Crafty Things
I have all sorts of things going on and in the process of being completed art and creativity wise and with related efforts. The ceramic rattles are completed, but they were one of the first things I moved via car to ensure they wouldn't be damaged. I will get pictures of them next trip and get them posted online for sale, though I might ask Mike to take a few teaser shots of them I will share via Patreon for anyone interested in catching them before they are released to the general public.  Most of my art supplies are going to be packed away until they can be relocated, but I will try to keep out some basic things like a sketchbook, my Wacom for digital, and maybe a few other odds or ends. All of my corals are doing well.  I have finally grown some out enough to where I can frag them, and plan to have those frags up for sale when I do.  Moving the tank and its inhabitants is going to be all sorts of insanity, but I already have it planned out and hope to document the process and share it later.  I have been prepping plants for bonsai and doing my annual collection of flowers for drying. The Sweet Olive and Gardenia smell so wonderful.  I have a few ceramics items that are glazed but not yet fired, so I really need to run the kiln and fire them before they get packed for travel.  Making of new items is on hold for the moment.
Dogs
Ember stayed with Mike so I could focus more on working with Tesla individually, similar to how I did back with Journey.  Training has been a little slow going with all of the other crazyness going around, and my body having an absolute fit. My ankle has been messed up over a month now, making it painful and hard to walk.  Poor Ember was getting to a point where I was having to give her more medicine when she was more active going places with me, and it was clearly effecting her behavior and her ability to alert accurately, to where I decided it was in her best interest not to work her anymore.  As a DDR line descendant GSD, Tesla is a very high drive dog, and far more challenging to work with.  I'm still not completely certain he has the correct behavior for assistance dog work.  He'd be excellent for Schutzhund and IPO activities without a doubt. In fact, I have been in contact with a local Schutzhund club and we went out this weekend to meet some of them and see them work their dogs.  Tesla even got to become acquainted with some nosework for tracking. Tesla is insanely strong for his size, and he has a beautiful bite and grip when engaged in play.  It's just honing in the focus and building the self control over those instincts, and helping build his "on/off" switch that might prove to be an issue. He is a puppy though, so I am hoping I can shape it and use that drive to our advantage, in a controlled fashion that will make him the best working dog he can be.

Going back to the topic of size, that is really the only other concern I have with Tesla. I am not sure if he will be big enough.  His growing rate is more closely resembling Chakotay's, which was on the smaller side for a male Shepherd.  Journey was huge by this age, but he also had obvious physical issues as a result despite my best efforts to do everything right to ensure physical soundness.  You just can't beat genetics.  Still, at 4 months old ( going on 5 ), I feel like even Chakotay was larger by this point.  But it could just be that I am so worried about if Tesla will work out or not after Journey and Chakotay washing out, that my mind is playing tricks on me.  We went in for Tesla's last round of puppy shots/ rabies vaccine. I discussed it with the vet. With his current rate of growth, unless he hits a huge growth spurt, she isn't sure he will be more than 60lbs.  He is a very strong little dog, even now.  But I need the size. He needs to be tall enough for full mobility assist and have a sound structure for the weight bearing support work and counter balancing.  Once again I am not sure how this will play out.  If he ends up being too small, I might not be able to use him, even if he is physically sound otherwise. Ideally a person my size should have a dog no less than 80lbs, preferably 100lbs+ for the mobility assist I require. With Ember, I fudged a lot and always used an additional surface/wall/furniture/whateve
r so I didn't hurt her.  Now I am to the point where I can't do that anymore, even if Ember was still young and workable, my body just can't tolerate as much as it used to. I need a larger dog.  I am really hoping Tesla will be that dog.