My new job allows me to have access to a cabin located on a lake one weekend in a year. We got fortunate last weekend and it was available.
What a great time! Even though it was cool and rainy, we still had a great time.
M caught a fish - granted, it was too small and we had to throw it back, but to see the bright shiny face and excitement of catching her first fish - what a great memory. She was so excited and was the only one who caught anything. Lots of fish interest, but no bites.
I also got to take the family and friends on to the lake spillway. We were spilling water out of the spillway gates and we were able to see the water go under the gates while standing over them on a grate. Wonderful and exciting. I love my job.
Oh, and I'm not a praying type, but I'm really pulling for a local lake to go one foot over full - it effects how we operate our pipeline and puts some pressure on our crews, but we can rise to the occasion.
I was also successful with grilling my first burgers with charcoal. I never have grilled on a charcoal grill - always have on a gas or electric. They were terrific. Simple pleasures. Simple pleasures.
Came home after a wonderful weekend and brewed a batch of German Light beer. I'll have to bottle the Cream Ale sometime this week.
I also want to say that I'm terribly impressed by the people I work with. They are really outstanding people and incredibly smart. I'm very lucky to be where I am.
As far as knitting - I did a quick Grandmother's Favorite dishcloth and a Housewarming dishcloth. I'm still working on my black Susan Undulating Wave scarf and have knitted the required 14 repeats - but need to make it longer - it's currently on hold. I also did a quick burp cloth that I thought was a Mason Dixson burp cloth, but it wasn't. It's done, I just have to weave in the ends and wash it. I also have a golf club cover done for a friend and need to weave in ends and make a pom pom.
I don't have photos and need to get some, but I'm SO unmotivated to do so.
I also agreed to supply my aunt with a Gnome and a Robot for a November fund raiser. I haven't even started and need to. Buh.
Monday, October 12, 2009
My new job allows me to have access to a cabin located on a lake one weekend in a year. We got fortunate last weekend and it was available.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Friday, September 11, 2009
Monday, September 07, 2009
The family and I are down south for the weekend to see my folks. J & I got a room so we could be a little more comfortable sleeping. One of my favorite geeky travel things that I like to do is flip through the local hotel three ring binder. In the past I've found some really fun and memorable things to do in those things.
So I found this at our hotel:
"The Windmill Far at Tolar, Texas"
See History in Motion; 26 Windmills on 26 Windmills on 26 acres in a country setting. Drive through, walk around, always open.
I read this and though Wind farm - hey they have those really cool wind turbines. I want to see these up close.
We drove up and I kept asking J if he'd seen the turbines. No
We turned in - and saw 26 old windmills - which were in really great shape - but weren't generating any electricity. And it was a bed and breakfast. Very cute, but history in the making, not. History in the past - yes.
It was funny and we got a great giggle out of the whole trip.
Then we went back into town to shop at the local Walmart. Found some iCarly panties for M. One of the panties have the word "blog" written all over them. M thinks having blog panties is cool.
I also finally got a visual confirmation that the wedding garter I knitted fit and the bride wore it on here wedding day. I was really pleased. As soon as I have a photo of it, I'll post it here.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
My cousin is happily married and THE GARTER FIT!! My mom has promised that she'd get a photo of it. As soon as I have a copy of it, I'll post it.
I've also been working on squares for an afghan that we're knitting for the local knitting guild. I volunteered to do two, and a friend ran into some trouble, so I'm currently knitting the final square. It's going quickly. I'll post a picture later.
Well, life has a funny way of changing directions on you. I keep pinching myself because I truly feel like I won the lottery.
As all of us, the economy has absolutely hit my company. In order for my traditional clients to get projects going, they have to be able to borrow money. I knew things were hinky after the big crash in October and we had gone into super serious conservation mode at home. No new yarn purchases (GASP!!), just buy stuff to survive. And I resisted it, but went along with it anyway because I understood that things were about to get ugly - but I never understood just how ugly.
Fast forward to April. I knew things were going south. Clients who used to tell me to get stuff done started to say things like, "we really don't need that done." I also noticed all the people I worked with were starting to be moved to other markets - not here.
I started floating my resume on April 1 - just in case. I also kept calling past clients to see what's coming up - nothing. Everyone was in survival mode.
Luckily, I have really good friends.
I ran into one of those friends back in November at a conference in Las Vegas. I casually mentioned that I really loved working at the place she still worked at and if I had to close my company, that organization would be ideal to jump to.
She said she'd keep an eye out.
I got emailed in May that the department was about to expand. I asked her out to lunch and during lunch, met up with my old boss and several former co-workers. Oh, and did I know about a potential opening?
Forward to today. I am now gainfully employed at a job that I used to work at 12.5 years ago. Looking back, I definitely wonder why the hell I left, but still feel that I needed to go out on my own. I have learned SO much out on my own. It's one of those bittersweet feelings. I'm just glad to be back.
After two weeks of working for someone else, I have to admit that I love what I do. I definitly work for the nicest man ever. He's one of those people who sees the diamond in the rough - and you, being the rough diamond, want to polish yourself to a billiant shine. (hokey, but very true)
My co-workers are hard working and kind.
I really am very lucky.
It's an adjustment. I hate commuting and it really eats into my knitting time - but isn't that really what everyone has to struggle with?
So now it's getting to be State Fair time. Do I have anything ready to go and to submit?
But I plan on entering the following:
Knitted toy from a pattern (a Sheldon Turtle)
Knitted toy - original (not sure on this one - I have two ways I can go on this one_
Original item (thinking about the baby halter)
That's about it.
I'm not going to specify on this blog where I work. I just think it's not a good idea.
Monday, June 29, 2009
Well, the garter is blocked and starched. Now I need to sew the darn thing together. I looked in my craft supplies and don't have a white spool of thread. I need it to sew the bias tape to the back of the garter. It still looks too big, but I know it'll shrink down once I have the elastic sewn in.
Friday, June 26, 2009
Since summer is in full swing and M is home, we are doing our own form of pseudo homeschool in the morning. On Monday, M has to write out her story in printed letters. On Wednesday, she rewrites it in cursive, and on Friday she types the story into a Google Doc.
Her FRIENDS knew she was Princess and kept it secret.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
For the past few weeks we've been visited by a strange bird - he comes and tries to get into our home every day around the same time - 11-ish in the morning. I think he's trying to attack a bird that just happens to look a whole lot like him (i.e., the reflection in the window).
I finally looked around the Cornell Lab of Ornithology site to try to identify it. We initially thought it was some kind of wood pecker - mainly because the beak was long and thin.
But I finally figured out that it's a Great Crested Flycatcher. It's really a beautiful bird.
Thursday, June 11, 2009
M and J got into this absolutely silly web site called My Brute. I finally got involved and now have two.
Monday, June 01, 2009
Monday, May 25, 2009
I had a really great weekend with my parents. My folks are great. M & I ran to Granbury and had a great time at D & G's Bed and Breakfast (my parents). They put in a pool in their back yard last year and their place is truly beautiful. They have outdoor speakers and can play music in the pool area. M told us that she'd fire the grandparents if they'd ever make the pool public - turns out she loves to skinny dip.
We had a great time.
But I have to say that this was a welcomed bright spot in a difficult time.
Professionally, I work in the land development industry. Work is tough lately - mainly because I just haven't had a lot of it.
I work in four different arenas:
- Natural Gas
I have to admit, I've been feeling a little down lately - but J is wonderful. He had me list out all the stuff my company has done over the last 9.5 years - and I get amazed. It was amazingly good for me to do that.
You see, I've been applying to various governmental jobs lately. It has been truly humbling. I've probably applied to over 60 positions - and have been over the past two months. I am used to getting good feedback from employers and many times I get the dreaded "You were not referred for this position. Your resume did not reflect the highly qualifying criteria the selecting official identified as necessary for successful performance in the position."
I am a damn good engineer.
(sorry for the language - I'm just frustrated.)
So, the dilemma. Try to keep my company going, or get a job with another one.
It's a hard decision. I've been self employed for almost a quarter of my life.
For an Air Force Brat who moved on average every year of her life until she was 21, this is true commitment.
It's hard to give up.
The hard work.
I almost gave it up 4 years ago.
Work started to slow down and I didn't think I could sustain a full payroll anymore. I did one of the most difficult things I've ever had to do - I let someone go who I knew needed to continue to work for me. I cried many, many nights and still wonder how my former tech is doing. I interviewed with a couple of consulting engineering firms - got some offers and turned them all down.
The pressure of a full payroll came off and I had enough work to cover me. I worked very hard for a long time.
Scan to now.
I hate waking up and going up to my computer with very little work.
I also am starting to miss working with people - you know. Waking up. Commuting. Getting to work. Drinking coffee. Conversing with co-workers.
I miss it. I really do.
But I love being self employed. LOVE IT.
So, I'm going to keep on keepin' on with my business and try to find some more. In the mean time, I'll keep floating my resume.
Who knows what will happen.
I still haven't had a firm job offer. I can't just stop working. My family needs me. I need to do it. I want to do it. I love doing it.
And you know what the irony is?
My company has more invoices paid to date than I've ever had paid without spending it. We've been on super conserve mode and just stick to basics - and it's working. We're actually doing okay. So we don't go out to eat as much as we used to. I don't get to buy as much yarn as I once did. I don't buy books anymore (I go to the library).
Life is still good.
I have a supportive husband. Loving and beautiful daughter.
I am one lucky woman.
And you know what?
I just know it will all work out.
No matter what happens, my husband will always support my decisions and my daughter has told me that she will be happy with whatever decision I make.
It just doesn't get any better than that.
Monday, May 11, 2009
You are the nicest mommy in the world! I Love you so much! LiFe is great with you! Ice creame is good. SuGar is sweet, But Not A Sweet as you! you always heLp with fun iDeas! You are the one Who is nice and sweet so I love you so much. Every Day you are sweet!Oh, and this is a peace sign:
Then we went to church and had a lovely pancake breakfast. Church had a guest speaker, Marc Adams of the HeartStrong, Inc charitable org. He was great.
Got home and J gave me a note:
It came with a $25 gift certificate from Joanns. Whoot!
Monday, May 04, 2009
My cousin is getting married this summer and I offered to make her a garter.
I have 12 inches knitted - 9 more to go. Made with cheap crochet cotton I had on hand. Free pattern is the Knitted Lace Wedding Garter by Diane Willett.
Also, I think I mentioned my aunt has breast cancer. I have knitted 6 pi topper hats. One I donated to the Fiber Fest last weekend, so I'm about to send 5 of these to my aunt today. I was able to run by the Knitting Nook on Saturday and get some cute buttons.
Speaking of Fiber Fest. I was able to pick up a skein of Brookes Farm Mas Acero. I cast on last night for a self fringing shawl.
And here's a close up because the photo above does not do the color justice.
M is finding that she likes to make things. A neighbor girl had some Capsters and showed M (and me) her necklace. We had most of the supplies and she made her own. I don't have a photo, but will post one later.
For some reason, it really sparked her creative side and I was presented with an early Mother's Day gift yesterday - this is supposed to be a bag.
Yes it's paper and I can't do much with it, but I think I'm going to have to really try to figure out how to fix it so I can use it. She was so proud - I will never forget the look on her face.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
J tweaks me in my cooking challenges and he came up with a new one - make home made pepperoni. He came across a good recipe. It's Tammy's Spicy Pepperoni and it's SUPER easy to make. It just takes time to do. I'd say this was a three day process - and you need another day to let the rolls rest.
Here's what it looked like coming out of the oven.
I let it rest in the fridge over night and broke out my food processor to make the slices thinner.
It is really great. We used a VERY lean ground beef and I left out the crushed red pepper because M doesn't like spicy food. Next time I'll add it. It needs a little kick. I could also look at rolling it in black pepper next time, too!
Oh, and the following pizza is almost completely scratch made (I didn't make the tomato sauce). It's homemade crust (from the ABI5M), homemade mozzerella, and homemade pepperoni.
It was good.
I wish I had a better camera to do it justice.
I was a huge Muppets fan as a teenager. This mash up made me laugh.
Thursday, April 09, 2009
At least that's what J says. And here's why:
I am now the owner of a 1998 Pink Red Rider BB gun. Look in the trees - yes, they're can's of Schlitz tied to yarn and thrown into the trees. I use them for target practice.
For the record, guns scare the pants off of me but I do like to shoot targets with them. This is the first gun that has ever been allowed into my home. I needed to "shoot" off some steam. It's a lot of fun. I have never killed a living animal with a gun to date, but if those squirrels keep eating my sunflower seeds I have out for the birds, I may be tempted.
And, no, I won't shoot my eye out. I have protective eye glasses!
Monday, April 06, 2009
And here's my first 2 x 1 sock done with a 54/36 combo.
I'm not happy with the selvage - seems like it's too loopy. Any of you CSM'ers know how to fix this?
Oh, and these are being modeled by my 7 year old. She's getting so big.
Friday, April 03, 2009
I for the life of me couldn't figure out how to siphon my beer using the racking cane that came with my kit. This is a GREAT video that shows you how to do it.
FWIW, I bought what's called an Auto Siphon. Even though I've seen the video I'm blogging about, I would still go out and pay the $12 it cost for the auto siphon.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
I was studying to become a licensed professional Engineer. After the test (May) we had to wait for results. In order to keep sane, I made this rocket:
I passed, but the rocket didn't survive. :(
I loved that rocket. It was supposed to go 16,000 feet (not a typo - We had the FAA on the line to make sure we wouldn't hit any airplanes) into the air and return. It disappeared into a cloud, never to be seen again.
Where the hell did the time go?
Monday, March 23, 2009
I recently had an opportunity pop up when I mentioned on one of my many knitting lists that I started to feel the pull to buy a flat bed knitting machine. Well, one of these kind ladies offered up *her* Passup Duomatic 80 as she never was able to make it work well.
I am now the proud owner of a Passap Duomatic 80, complete with the Forma and Deco extensions.
Now I'll definitely have to join the D/FW Machine Knitter's Guild.
will you come out and watch the sunset with me?
(You can't really see it here, but they're sitting on large rocks being sweet to each other.)
We had a difficult, emotional day yesterday. M knew just what to do to diffuse the whole thing.
I took the LeGare 400 apart into all it's various little bits and let them soak in some Marvel Mystery Oil.
I let the machine soak for about a month - ostensibly because I wanted to let it soak, but really it's because there were SO many small parts that I was intimidated by the darn thing.
J's one of those people who is really good for me as he doesn't let me stay intimidated for long.
So this weekend I finally sat down and put the darn thing back together - and didn't have a single bit put out of place.
Yay for me!
Bad news, though: I need a new yarn carrier and possibly a new yarn mast. I stripped the threads on the end of the yarn mast. The yarn carrier keeps hitting the needles and isn't able to be adjusted. That's okay. I love the carrier I bought from Roxanna. I'll just have to get another.
I have over 100 bottles of home brew in various states. (Each crate in the stack holds 30 bottles and the top one has about half). The crate on the floor holds the clean empties.
I've actually started a Beer Calendar on Google to keep track of what's drinkable. We put letters on top of the bottles to denote what it is.
A = American Lager (from the "just add yeast & water" kit - excellent beer)
B = Bock (Just tasted one over the weekend and it needs another week so we can get rid of that yeasty taste)
C = Continental Light (Now it's called German Light)
R = Red (the bad batch that ended up working out okay)
I'll need to come up with a different letter for the stuff located in the Secondary right now as A for Amber won't work out.
J has been intrigued by the recent postings of people making wine out of Welches grape juice. So we ran by our favorite beer making place (Foreman's General Store in Colleyville). Here's our first crack at making wine - that yeast really made it active! It also drastically changed the color from a thick Mogen-David color to something lighter.
The bottles are from some cheap wine we purchased and consumed.
We'll see how it turns out.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
I stumbled on the idea to use newspaper for seedling pots. We've planted carrots, squash, peas, peppers, and arugula. AND!!
I'm actually using my greenhouse. . .
We also planted onions, rosemary & potatoes
And we also planted a spearmint plant:
I'm hoping that will take over.
J got a true kick out of me while I was planting the seeds. "Hey, this looks like the seeds in
We kicked around a lot when I was a kid. We were never living in one place long enough to plant a garden. I'm still nervous none of this is going to work or that it's going to be too much work.
Time will tell.
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
- Naamah's Kiss by Jacqueline Carey
- Cemetary Dance by Lincoln Child and Douglas Preston
- The Fire by Katherine Neville (lame ending)
- Terminal Freeze by Lincoln Child (predictable)
- A Dangerous Man by Charlie Huston (quick read)
- The Devil's Eye by Jack McDevitt
- City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau
- Santa Olivia by Jacqueline Carey
- From Dead to Worse by Charlain Harris
- Gifts by Ursula K. Le Guin
- Dead and Gone by Charlain Harris
- Storm Front by Jim Butcher
- Proven Guilty by Jim Butcher (read 1/2 - decided to read first in series)
- Bloodhound by Tamora Pierce
- Terrier by Tamora Pierce
- Six Bad Things by Charlie Huston
- Caught Stealing by Charlie Huston
- The Last Colony by John Scalzi
- Zoe's Tale by John Scalzi
- The Ghost Brigades by John Scalzi
- Old Man's War by John Scalzi
- Tiger in the Well by Phillip Pullman
- Shadow of the North by Phillip Pullman
- The Ruby in the Smoke by Phillip Pullman
Baby Surprise Jacket
Trinomial Cube Afghan
CSM Sock - First Ribbed Sock
CSM Sock - Size 10
CSM Sock - Size 13
Charity CSM Baby Hats
CSM Sock - Comfort Southland
CSM Sock - Comfort Hari Hari
Four Pairs CSM Socks - Knit Picks Essential & Felicity
Another CSM Sock - Comfort Yarn
CSM Sock - Comfort Yarn
First pair of CSM socks
Jaywalker Ankle Socks
I noticed I got a comment from an anonymous commenter regarding my hate for Twilight.
First off, I love reading vampire novels and have read several.
Twilight just pisses me off. The novel just kept going and going and NOTHING REALLY HAPPENED.
Basically, I can sum up Twilight for you
- Girl moves to cold place to live with a dad she really doesn't know.
- Girl finds out the boy she likes is a vampire.
- NOTHING HAPPENS with the boy/vamp.
- The vamps have a baseball game and a psycho vamp decides he wants to kill the Girl.
- Girl runs away from estranged dad to be tracked down by psycho vamp.
- Boy/vamp kills psycho vamp.
There are better vamp books out there. Really.
The Susie Stackhouse series is the best, IMHO. There are others that are good, but Twilight is just filled with NOTHING.
I'm a fan of good story lines. I also really wanted Twilight to be a good book. I was very disappointed.
I mentioned that I finished a Grumpasaurus. Here he is in all his cuteness.
I'm also knitting a Super-sized Captain Underpants. I'll post the modified pattern once I have all the details worked out. Here's a progress photo.
Here's where I am on the crocheted Mermaid. I was waiting on getting some peach colored Berroco Comfort. That and I also got some Comfort Chunky for the hair.
I also finished a pair of CSM socks for my mom. I'll post a photo later.