About Sue

My life so far has been pretty interesting. I grew up in the fifties and sixties before racial integration and woman's liberation. If I had been born a few years earlier, the expectation would have been to get married out of high school, have some kids, and be a stay at home mom.  Thankfully, that wasn't the case by the time I became an adult.

I grew up in Iowa at a time when you left the house in the morning, maybe stopped by at lunch to grab a sandwich, then went back outside to play until dark. There was no stranger danger and the worst that happened was skinning a knee on the concrete while playing kickball in the street. I grew up with black and white television (and only 3 channels), AM radio, party lines, one car and bathroom per household, having to wear dresses to school, and having milk delivered to your door in glass bottles.

I've published a book, and had some newspaper articles printed. Granted, the book is a quiz book, which doesn't have the cachet of a novel. And the subject of the articles was UFO's so my dad didn't have to write them. But they are accomplishments I am pretty proud of.

I've been a carhop, folded clothes at K-Mart, did brazing at a General Electric assembly plant, and was one of the first three women hired to work as a nuclear equipment operator at the Cordova Nuclear Power Station. I spent several years co-driving a semi-truck, traveling to every one of the 48 contiguous states, while seeing very few of the notable landmarks.

I've clerked at a grain elevator in Illinois and at a small water company in Arizona. I did Customer Service at the City of Scottsdale Utility Billing department. I stumbled into my career in technology by first automating some of the processes at the City when they switched from dumb terminals to PCs. I started working in Quality Assurance for a software company and learned how to program. I've done software development for four different companies.

In 2013 I was laid off from the job I had as a database and C# programmer for a global CRM company. Missed the people, but after the shock of being laid off waned, I enjoyed the hell out of the 16 weeks of severance.  I did some SQL consulting then picked up a job in the QA automation department of a large national travel company.  Loved being able to work from home 5 days out of 10.

But I was getting bored when the new owner of the CRM company asked me to come back to do database work and automation.  That started out well, but has regressed into straight up manual QA. Not my cup of tea.

In my non-work life, I read sci-fi and mystery books.  Some of my favorites are the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris (sorry she stopped writing them), the Thursday Next series by Jasper Ffordes, the Mary Russell stories by Laurie R. King, and the Dresden stories by Jim Butcher.  Currently, I am on a kick of reading themed mysteries where I learn about book selling, home remodeling, or anthropology while the mystery is solved.  I watch television shows of the sci-fi and drama genres, such as Castle, NCIS, Haven, and  Supernatural.  My choice in movies is the same, adventure over substance, comedy over tear-jerkers.

I love music, but find that except when I am working on glass, I generally do not turn on my music.  I prefer to hear the birds chirping in the backyard, the wind chimes pinging, and the semi-silence.  When I do listen to music, my first choice is generally country.  I am a big fan of Brad Paisley, The Band Perry, Sean Mullins, Taylor Swift, The Doors and many more.

I am a smitten dog owner with 2 spoiled dogs.  My Shepherd mix, Peanut, had a heart attack in May 2012. I should have expected it, considering all the heart medication she was on.  But it took me by surprise.

Angel missed having a canine companion, especially when I was at work.  So I rescued a 15-month-old Great Dane in June, 2012.  Bogie is multi-colored with blue eyes, now weights 138 pounds, is a hoot and a frequent subject of this blog.

Angel is a 5-year-old, 75 pound Great Dane/Belgian Malinois mix who thinks she is a lap dog.  She loves to run figure eights in the grass and blew her knee out in 2011.  After knee reconstruction surgery and monthly cartilage rebuilding injections, she seemed quite capable of keeping up with the younger Great Dane. She loves me, but adores Bogie.

However, in May, 2013, Angel blew out the other knee and had to have a second surgery.  Thankfully, the vet says only back knees go out, never front knees.  Now she is being treated for a mild case of Valley Fever.

Turned out that Bogie wasn't full grown when I got him.  Once he got bigger than I am, it became more difficult to prevent him from chasing critters when we were out walking.  After I got hurt in a particularly nasty fall, that could have been much worse, I began taking him to a professional dog trainer.  Bogie is doing great.  Me, I have a lot to learn.

I am a backyard bird watcher and put out blocks of bird seed to feed the wild quail.  I keep a hummingbird feeder on the patio for hummingbirds and flickers and I have hanging feeders for the sparrows, doves, and finches.  Four shallow bird baths complete my suburban refuge.  I would love to decrease the pigeon population that frequents my back yard, but after taking a break from putting out feed, my love birds didn't come back when I resumed.

Bogie attempts to keep the pigeons at bay.  But despite him chasing them every chance he gets, and despite him catching 16 pigeons so far this year, the pigeons still cluster under the feeders waiting for spillage.

I am not an early adopter of technology, but I generally get around to changing.  I use a smart phone, have a Kindle, and connect everything wirelessly.  I am an avid reader of FaceBook and Twitter, but am not a frequent poster. I see it as a great way to keep up with news and keep in touch with friends and family.

I am a stained glass artist and prefer to create my own patterns.  I love to take a realistic picture and try to reproduce it in glass or turn it into something more fantastical. The play of the light on the glass, the textures, and the huge variety of colors appeals to me. A glass project will look different depending on the kind and amount of light reflecting on or behind it.

Admittedly, I haven't done much glasswork lately.  Given a choice between working on glass (or housekeeping), and reading a book, I'll take the book every time.

The past cannot be changed, unless and until time travel is invented.  Likes, dislikes, jobs, and hobbies are subject to change at whim or circumstance.