February 22, Saturday: working on 1 hr presentation
February 19, Wednesday: organizing articles & doctor visit
Update 7:38 pm: Finally saw the doctor and came home. I was missing John and wishing I could curl up by him. I do NOT like wasting time in a waiting room for 1.5 hrs. It was so loud I couldn't read. I walked on the treadmill for an hour to get rid of frustration and nervous energy. It was sorely needed. I've not done it in a while and been missing it. Mom made a really great dinner of chicken wings, beans and rice, which I ate and usual amount of. I cannot believe I'm actually gaining weight. I worked on organizing papers most of the day that I wasn't at the doctor. Now, I think I'm going to relax with John some. I'm SO glad he's home.
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February 18, Tuesday: there's been less writing these days...
Why less writing? Because I'm focusing
Lots of appointments makes scheduling difficult
Yesterday: pHing and miracle parts order
I've firstly been checking the pH on my RNA solutions, because it's going to be critical that I know exactly what it is. I also pHed a second to 8.00, all at 37C. I'm not sure if this other solution is RNase free (it was made up previous with Nanopure water not specifically labeled for RNA), but we shall find out! It's far easier to pH a solution already made than to make up a new one, so I'm going with it for now.
Why is this pHing so irritating? Because, firstly, Tris-HCl buffer changes its pH with the temperature. The buffer must be heated to precisely 37C before measuring. After insertion of the pH probe (which is colder), it must be allowed to equilibrate for at least 5 minutes. Secondly, because these are RNA solutions, and glass is known for harboring RNase (such as glass from which the pH probe is constructed), I cannot pH the buffer directly. I instead, take a small portion of it out into a 15 ml falcon tube (RNase free), and pH THAT. Then I make adjustments to the original solution based on my reading, and repeat. The solutions used for adjusting (NaOH and HCl respectively), I also make up specifically for RNA. It's a lengthy process, especially from scratch.
Miracle parts order
I saw coming back that our Nanopure water system trigger was damaged. It was hard to use it. This was greatly distressing, because I love the Nanopure water system and use it for all my RNA stuff. (Nanopure water is basically a very expensive filtering device that filters water so well there's basically NOTHING in it - and I mean - NOTHING - not even anything that will hurt very delicate RNA. Very useful.)
After asking around, I found out Daniel had been calling the company about it, but since he was obviously taken up with graduating and moving to TN, would not be able to mess with it any longer. Carol told me Khalid was going to fix it.
Suddenly, I realized: this is something annoying Khalid! *turns into angry, green hulk Jess* THUS, I WILL KILL IT. But, I couldn't really, because I had no idea how to do that. So, I turned to the Lord, of course, and said basically, "Lord, this problem has to die. Help me kill it. I have no idea how. Please show me how and give me favor with the company!" Apparently, the company hadn't been very helpful so far. Daniel and others had been trying to get the company to give them the right parts and quotes on the parts for a while. The company responded by mailing the wrong ones and wouldn't respond to messages, so it seems, for nearly 2-3 months.
I asked Kevin, Daniel and then Zheng and finally Zheng gave me Daniel's email to the company, which had part numbers. I found various other things on the Nanopure, like serial and model numbers, which I didn't end up needing, it turned out.
Then, I decided to do the most obvious thing first and call the repair and maintenance line. Daniel had been trying to get quotes. SO I asked for quotes to the parts he listed. Thank goodness he had those listed. I would have had no idea how to acquire those (silent thanks to the Lord).
The company person asked if I wanted a formal quote order, or just the prices. I, confused, asked, "Um, what's the difference?" The person on the other end thought that was a very stupid question, and it was, but I really had no idea. I got the prices though and they were all cheap!
I asked if I could order them, and they said yes! Just like that! Thus, a seemingly mission impossible suddenly became so much easier. But they said they'd call me back, because their credit card system was down. I was so overjoyed at the strange ease of all this, but fretted for three hours, worrying they wouldn't call back. They did not, but upon calling them again, their systems were working again and I placed the order. And Khalid was happy. And that made me really happy.
This is my favorite prayer the Lord answered for me all month so far. I hate calling people, but I'll do almost anything, if it will remove annoyances from Khalid. I tried to kill it and it DIED. YES! I felt so victorious. Isn't the Lord great? Maybe the parts won't fix the problem, but at least it's a step in the right direction I hope. I looked around briefly for other things to kill, but there isn't any yet. Thus, I go back to my scanning for problems mode. I love trying to make Khalid's life easier. It's part of my purpose, I feel like.
Today: *sighs contentedly* I love science
I've been enjoying seeing Kevin around and everyone in the lab again. It's so much fun, to be back in the Salaita lab. I hope I can do worthy research. I really do. Until tomorrow!
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February 12, Wednesday: got urge to write some nonsense
Ahh. Well, read a bunch of articles today. I could have read more, but I got restless. John had the day off work. We played just a bit of TOR; then we watched curling while I read more. He's really the best guy ever!! I feel so blessed to have him in my life. We ate a nice dinner. I had fun reading.
A story because
I felt like I should read some Psalms, so I did that. And while I was reading, I got this strange urge to write a story. It probably won't go any place, but, maybe if I get bored in random moments, I'll add to it. It can be found in the writing tab, labeled "A story." I like nonsense writing. Typically, I like to plan my stories, but most of the time, that means I plan and plan and never write. So this is discovery writing: it means I have no idea where it's going and I'm making it up as I go along. Yep. Just like Nanowrimo. I have no idea why I'm doing it. Because. Maybe it'll be nanowrimo practice.
What you can expect from this story - not much - but probably a slime blob
It will probably include a slime blob at some point. That was the first thing John asked me: so, does it include a slime blob? I said no - not yet! - but I had seriously thought about it. It does include a spaceship, of course. Maybe it'll turn into a nice B book. You know, like B movies? A B book. I'd be happy for a Z book, actually. If it actually got to a nice finish, that would be something. We'll see. Mostly, it's just nonsense, because. So don't go expecting anything! *looks around, suspiciously, as if to ward off critics* It's *supposed* to be bad. *sigh* Anyway. I'm looking forward to reading more tomorrow. It looks like the ice is here to stay for at least one more day. It's continually rained ice the entire day, pretty much and it's now thicker than ever.