Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Makes me wonder about the future of our country

when a univeristy student makes a statement like this:

" 'What am I gonna remember in 10 years - that I saw Barack Obama or that I failed the test?' asked *******, another senior nursing major who skipped class to make sure she would get a spot inside the Convo."

Please God, don't let her become a nurse. We don't need nurses who are so sure they're going to fail a test that they don't even go to class.

Okay, this was probably taken out of context and possibly said in jest, but that's what our local paper has as the subheading of this article.

My new favorite ad



--Light snow fall is expected across the highlands through the nighttime hours. Most of the accumulating snow will be on western facing slopes in the higher elevations. Expected accumulations during the day Tuesday are one to two inches with an additional one to three forecast overnight.--

My ONE politically-oriented post

I'm just trying to stay out of the way.

Obama is coming to our small city this afternoon, and the school is in a delirium of "can I call my mom to see if I can leave school to see Obama?" Finally an announcement was made that NO ONE is allowed to use the phone in the attendance office to call for permission to leave the school (which leaves it wide open for school-wide use of forbidden cell phones and sudden illnesses).

The announcement of the visit was made on Sunday, and the town has been nuts since then. I believe that the last presidential candidate visited here in 1860. People camped overnight on the JMU campus, hoping to get inside the Convocation Center and claim one of the 8000 seats. This will be interesting; let's see, there are at least 10,000 JMU students, about 40,000 city residents, and a few hundred city school teachers and students all vying for a glimpse.

I'm going down to the attendance office to see how insane it all is. I bet that half of the kids in the school are trying to leave.

UPDATE: That was interesting. Many students decided that they had the right to leave school without parental permission because a presidential candidate is speaking nearby. Mayhem ensued. Many of the students became quite verbally abusive to staff and administration. An announcement was made that no more students would be allowed to leave school for any reason other than illness (and suddenly many kids were ill) and no calls from parents would be entertained in that regard. Some parents stormed in and were also verbally abusive to staff and administration as a result of this.

Last I heard, at least half of our 1300+ kids had signed out or stayed out all day. At noon, it was said that there was a line of potential attendees snaking out a mile from the Convo Center. It's 46 degrees and windy. I just heard that people are parking at K-Mart, which is a good two miles away, and having to walk from there.

Monday, October 27, 2008


Both. Copiers. Are. Fixed!!! And. Working. At. Once!


Only three hours' work on the "bad" one. The "good" one had a paper folded accordian-style in the side of the fuser. I think that's what it's called, anyway. And I took that thing out on Friday, but I looked inside the copier, not on the side of the fuser.

So. They're both working. I'm pretty much caught up on all the copying, except for the three textbooks that I'm supposed to copy.

Hmmm. No professional development days about copyright infringement. Yet.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Has anyone used Skype

or another video calling thingy? Bitsy has a webcam that I want to use to visit my grandkids.

Speaking of which, I have a trip booked to Orlando in about 3 weeks! Five days in the warmth of Florida. I'd have been happy with two or three full days there, but thanks to Airtran's booking procedures, my free trip wasn't available on the dates I wanted, so I took what was available. I need some warm sun and some grandkids' loving.

Woohoo for getting a free trip to Florida!!!

State of the copiers, part 3,567,432


Yeah, it's time to update the state of the copy room and my brain.

Yesterday, while I was working in the main office while the secretary was on her lunch break, someone tried to make copies on the remaining working copier. It jammed. She took the thing apart and pulled out all the paper she could find, but it still insisted that there was a jam in 3 and 4.

I took the damned (literally) thing apart but I couldn't find any shred of wadded paper. This happened the first week of school and it took the copy tech guy an hour to take the machine apart (more than I know how to do, or want to know) and find that one little corner of fan-folded paper that caused the whole thing to self-destruct. I suspect that's what's happened again, so I called Xerox yet again, and Alma assured me (see, I remembered to write down her name this time) that Tech Guy would call within an hour to set up an appointment.

He didn't call. Wanna bet that Xerox will have no record of this call?

The crapout of the "good" copier pretty much shut down the school. Monday's copies haven't been made.

I have Tech Guy's personal cell-phone number (he gave me his card and said to call if I need toner and Xerox doesn't follow through, which happened last week) and will call him Monday morning at 7 a.m. when I get to work.


This is my new laptop, Bitsy. She's so cute!

I'm having a blast learning about her. She can do so many cool things.

Her screen can swivel and become a tablet for browsing the internet or writing in Journal. I tried to import a file from Journal to show how she can store files in my handwriting or convert them to text., but it wouldn't work, so for now, here's a sample of the text-recognition practice program, which will eventually be able to read my handwriting and convert it to text.

This was one of the sample sentences the program gave me. I swear I am not making this up. Perhaps HP should google famous knitters and see how wrong they are.

Her screen is 12.1" and she weighs about 5 pounds. I carry her in a neoprene case in my book bag.

It only took an hour (!) on the phone with a guy with an intense accent to get her hooked up to our wireless network, then she was ready to go. I've used her in town while waiting for Tom, and I'm looking forward to using Bitsy in airports, hotels, and anywhere else in the world I go.

Maybe Cancun in the spring? We have two free roundtrips each (Tom and me, not Bitsy; she travels free) that have to be used by the end of July, so we're thinking of going to CA for two weeks this summer and maybe Cancun. Airtran conveniently added Cancun as one of their destinations in the last month or so, and we just might take advantage of it. Their airfare for spring break week (mine) is about $800 each round trip, so that would be a big savings.

So. I have my new laptop, Itsy Bitsy, and she's raring to go places and enjoy new experiences with me. I love my new baby.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Safety first

This just came in my email from an administrator.

"If you are putting any sharp objects, broken glass, metal or anything that could cause injury in the trash cans, (including but not limited to conventional and nuclear weapons) custodians are requesting that you please label or tape a small warning sign to the trash can. Thank you."

It's nice to have someone looking out for us.

Update: I emailed Mr. Administrator and asked if we can bring nuclear weapons to school. His reply:

"Only for personal protection...."

It's Friday. We have to entertain ourselves.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A good story

If one of my sisters will email me with the story of the tile cleaner, I'd be most obliged. I can't read the label in the photo or remember the "attributes" of the stuff, and I don't have one of my own. *pout*

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


I've got my new laptop and it's up and running--at least, as much as it can be after one hour on the phone with Verizon tech support to get it to recognize our wireless modem.

More tomorrow, if I have the energy. Time to eat dinner!

Monday, October 20, 2008


I apologize for not checking my comments and answering them. It was a busy weekend and now I'm off (ha!) to Richmond for an eye appointment. I'll be back tomorrow morning.

Gotta check the copier, which is churning out its poor guts, and get out of here!

Wrap progress

I finished the first big-ass wrap on Friday afternoon and cast on another. Photos below. The first one has a doggie head.

The second one is nearing the halfway point. Same yarn, 3 or 4 stitches less for a more petite lady. I love knitting with this yarn and the fact that it's just plain mindless knitting.

I guess that I'm a process knitter. I'm not nearly as interested in the finished project as I am in knitting it.

State of the copier yet again

This one was suggested by the copy tech guy. He's coming back later today or tomorrow morning to resume the exorcism.

Friday, October 17, 2008

No record

Xerox has "no record" of the service call I made yesterday. No. record.

They do now.


Our cousin Jean came to the funeral on Tuesday. We saw her at her sister's motel in NC back in June, but other than that, we usually don't get together except at funerals. It's time to change that.

Jean, Joan, Betty, and me.

I'm not that fat. Really. It's a bad angle. The lighting was wrong. I was wearing a flowy silk overshirt that makes me look fat.





Deedee, HELP!


Yesterday was sort of a catch-up day here at work. It was parent-teacher conference day, so the teachers didn't come in till 11:30. The morning was nice and quiet, but....


The copying was going alone fine, if a bit slow. I don't know if the overused copier is worn out from constant use or what the problem is, but it was copying. Until....... this happened.

The page on the right is the way it's supposed to be. But when I hit the "interrupt" button for a quick job needed right away, the.. the... thing on the left came out. Totally black. Tried again. Happened again. Took it off interrupt and it worked fine.

Later, I tried an interrupt job again. The same thing happened. Back to regular jobs and it copied the way it's supposed to.

Until. The regular jobs started spitting out totally black copies. Over and over and over.

I cancelled the thirty-some jobs that were pending. Really I just deleted a few, figured it was all a mess anyway, and turned the copier off, then unplugged it. I waited a good minute then plugged it back in and turned it on. It worked fine.

I still called Mr. Tech Guy who hasn't been by to see the deceased copier in over two weeks. I was told he'd call back within an hour to make an appointment to come by. He usually calls within a few minutes, but it's 22 hours since then and he still hasn't called.

I think he's avoiding me.


Thursday, October 16, 2008

"He walked in joy"

George's funeral really was a celebration of his life. It was emotional, but a good kind, not the sobbing-and-snorting kind that Joan and I can get into so easily. Tears flowed but they flowed softly and gently.

The minister personalized the service so beautifully. I've been to too many funerals where the minister didn't really know the person, but this one did. He emphasized George's sense of humor, his love for his family, and our love for him. One line he said has stayed with me.

"He walked in joy."

That describes George so well. He was so full of joy and he shared it with us all. He was always laughing and telling jokes, one-liners that were so cute. We girls adored him, and we always will.

Cousins and an aunt that we rarely see came to the funeral and to the house afterward, and we had such a good time together. Our family is full of good humor and laughter so it was an afternoon of celebration of our lives and George's and Dorothy's, too. The two of them have brought so much love and joy to us.

Family is a precious thing, and I'm so thankful for mine!


A few posts down I left one entitled "What do you think of this?" The title is a link to something that might be a very good idea for me. I can't do math, so it really might cut down on late-night posting.


By default it's set to work from like midnight to 6 a.m., but it can be changed once you add it to your gmail and blogger. I think I'll be enabling it.

I may never be allowed to post again at night if I have to solve math problems under a time limit.

Contest alert!

Not mine this time but from another blog: http://blog.knitting2together.com/ Once again, I apologize for not having my linky cheat sheet. I had the cds with me yesterday, but they're heavy to carry and I left them at home this morning. Crap.

So anyway, this lady is on a trip and wants you to guess how many photos she'll take with her new camera.

About my contest winners: I'll get the prizes out. I promise. I'm a terrible procrastinator. I actually picked up Courtney's prize last night and hugged it and smelled it (Downy fabric softener; Claudia uses it and it reminds me of her drying room with all those gorgeous hanks of yarn drying. I have to go visit.) and then put it back down because I was too tired to do anything about it. I'm so sorry, guys.

A note about the Peter Cooper Mission Door cd: It's incredible. Joan and I are listening to it every chance we get. She keeps it in her car; we listened to it on the way to and from George's funeral and burial. Last Thursday night at home I turned it up really loud and listened to it for hours. (Tom had gone to pick up Donna in Baltimore, so I had the house to myself.) Usually when I'm alone I don't turn on the tv or music; after being around kids and copiers making noise all day, I just want peace and quiet at night, but that night I needed good loud music. I'd taken the truck to work that day and listened to Mission Door on the way in and home; it's about a cd's worth ride each way, and it was heavenly to have. The car doesn't have a cd player; it only has a cassette deck that's broken. And the truck is more comfortable and well-appointed than the old car. If we keep that car another two years, I'm going to have to put a new XM radio with cd player in it. Right now we have XM stuck on the dash and wired into the radio (since the tape deck broke; reception is much better through the tape deck than through FM reception) and it's ugly and in the way, but it's better than not having XM.

So, anyway, Peter Cooper = good. I'm looking forward to the cd he and Eric Brace from Last Train Home have finished and are releasing soon. I'm sure that'll show up in a contest as soon as I can get it!

Monday, October 13, 2008

State of the copier

Going on five weeks now. Got any ideas for the next "face"?


Tom's nephew got married on Saturday. It was held on a bluff overlooking the Shenandoah River, North Fork, next to the groom's house.

It was a perfect day for an outdoors wedding, about 75 degrees and a beautiful view.

The bride and groom's son escorted their special attendant, Deja.

Ryder wasn't asleep; he was enjoying his cake.

As treats they had little bags of Reese's Pieces; Tom got a little bored.

A family reunion on a happy occasion, and a beautiful wedding.

Driving along the backroads of West Virginia

We came upon this domicile.

(Enlarge for full effect.)

The dog couldn't be bothered to drop his chew toy (at least, I hope that's what it was), but he was very vocal. He's got some very valuable turf to protect.

And I bet that car ain't used on no farm, neither.

I'm jealous. We ain't got no camper trailer.

Little traitor

Zippy is a velcro dog, usually either on my lap or at my feet. If I go to the bathroom, Zippy is sitting right there demanding attention.

But last week Tom's daughter came up for a visit, and what does Zippy do?

Fat and sassy

No cracks about dinner, please. I get touchy about that.

And it's the middle of October!

Not that I'm complaining.

So, what do you think of this?


Friday, October 10, 2008

Will someone please keep me away from the computer

after I've taken Ambien? Evidentally I sent quite a few emails, too.


My cousin ate ice cream without knowing it. I read and write.

Tom, why don't you hide the car keys?

Thursday, October 09, 2008

He's gone

Our sweet George Honey is gone. He's gone past pain and misery and is George again. I pray for his wife, my mom and dad, and my sisters.

I haven't been able to find the photo of him with Mia. It was so cute. I'll keep looking.

God speed, George, and may God grant you (and Dorothy) peace and rest.

George Honey

George Honey was the best uncle four girls could have.

I hate to write in the past tense because he's still hanging on, bless his frail, sweet heart, but the George that he used to be has been gone for a while.

George has a condition similar to Alzheimer's Disease; the symptoms are similar, but his was caused by too much pressure in his spinal fluid. He was a candidate for surgery to correct it, but something went horribly wrong during the 24-hour test and spinal fluid leaked all over the bed. In the hospital. Where no one noticed.

George Honey (we didn't know exactly why our aunt called him that until much later; one of his former girlfriends called him that and Dorothy teased him that way) lived in Miami when we were little, along with our aunt Dorothy and our grandparents. Every summer, from the time they moved there, our family went down for a two-week vacation. I can't imagine what it was like for them, an invasion of four fairly-well-mannered kids, but kids nonetheless, when Dorothy and George didn't have any. The house was a very nice 1950s-style Florida home, everything in its place, and then we'd invade.

And they had air conditioning, something we'd never had (and never would until Mom and Dad's last move to Chester) and certainly didn't have in our cars back then. Can you imagine 3 and then 4 kids packed into a station wagon with no a/c for a 21+ hour trip, with stops for gas, food, and, occasionally, potty breaks. Oh, we had the Pink Pot when we were smaller. Didn't even have to stop the car to use that. It was pleasant for all us in the back seat, but it was a part of vacation. We'd stop at roadside picnic tables and eat our box cereal (a treat, since we never got that at home!) and sandwiches. Later we'd stop at fast food places, which were also a vacations-only treat for years. Every year, we'd eat at McDonald's on the way home from the beach.

Oh, the beach. That beautiful blue/green water, so warm. The burning sand. The walk through the tunnel under the road from the parking lot to the beach. Some days it was choppy and the undertow was bad, but some times it was smooth as glass. We treasured those days.

With 3 and, later, 4 kids, it was too expensive to stop in a motel on the way down and back in the early years. We slept in the car as Dad drove; occasionally, I think we may have stopped along the way and all slept, although I may be mixing that up with a weekend trip. We were bribed to behave, although we basically could tell the lay of the land by watching Dad's neck. He, like most of our family, has a light red birthmark at the bottom of his hairline in the back. When he's frustrated, it gets darker. I'd watch that and gauge my behavior accordingly.

The bribery, as I remember it, involved being given a quarter each time we stopped for gas (remember Stuckey's?). We could spend it right then or save it and really blow it later. A quarter in 1958 was a lot of money to us kids.

Once, Nana (Mom's mother) made a wonderful game plan for our trip. She knew exactly how many miles it was from her house to Muck and Poppa's house in Miami, and she wrote things like "mile _ to mile _, read a book. mile _ to mile _, take a nap. Mile _ to mile_, look for such and such." The last few miles were listed as "look for Muck and Poppa's house". I think that we followed that list pretty closely, and it made the trip (for the kids, at least) so much fun.

George Honey (we dropped the Honey in later years, but as children, that's how we knew him) was always willing to play with us, talk, tell stories, entertain us. We must have bored him silly, but we loved him to pieces. He was a big part of the trip, for us.

Around 1990, Muck, Dorothy, and George moved back to Virginia, just two doors down from Mom and Dad. I still can't fathom that someone would leave the sun and palm trees and beaches and shells and St. Augustine grass to return to a place where it's cold a good 6 months of the year, with snow and ice, and maybe four months of reliably comfortable weather. But Miami had become a rathole and it was time to leave it, so leave it they did. Hurricanes also factored into their decision; they lived only a couple of miles from the coast and a storm surge could potentially reach that far.

Dorothy and George enjoyed camping in the Great Smokey Mountains. They had a nice tent, then a Volkswagen pop-up van. They'd spend part of their vacation in the mountains, then they'd stay with us for a week or so. We so looked forward to those visits. When Betty and I were 13 and 14 (we're 15 months apart), they took us on a two-or-three-night trip to Gettysburg, I think. Somewhere in PA. That was such a treat. The year before they were visiting us right before our family was taking our vacation to Miami, and D&G took us home with them about a week before the rest of the family came down. We went to Six Gun Territory somewhere along the way where we got to meet Jerry Mathers, The Beaver. And one night while playing in the swimming pool at the motel, Betty and I met a girl our age and became pen pals for years. I lost track of that girl years later after her second marriage. I'd sure like to know how she is.

We also went to Silver Springs, home of the glass-bottom boats. What a treat that trip was. With so many kids it was too expensive for all of us to do things like that.

Then that summer Dorothy took us camping with the girls from her church group (I can't remember the name of the group to save me) who were about our age, a little older. We spent two or three nights camping at a state park an hour or two north of Miami, and it had a creek with a swimming hole. What a treat! The only part we didn't care for was walking to the bath house (yes, a real bathroom!) in the dark. No way would I sleep that far from a bathroom now!!!

On my 13th birthday, which occurred while we were camping, Dorothy went into town for an hour or so and left us to play in the creek. It was cool in the hot sun, trees, little fishes, wonderful. Then one of the older girls, who could swim (and we couldn't) persuaded Betty to hang onto her and she'd take her through the "deep" water. She assured us it would be safe. But something went wrong and Betty nearly drowned, or so I thought. I don't know what she thought, but I was convinced that she was drowning. She didn't, though, but I wouldn't go back out in the water above my knees. It was at that moment that I realized how much I love and need Betty. A life without her flashed before my eyes and I didn't think I could live without her. I still don't.

One summer, Dorothy took us all to the Miami Seaquarium. I was about 12 and didn't think it was worth the trip, but I was wrong. We spent the day there; we may have seen Flipper, or something named Flipper, anyway. About that same time Dorothy took Betty and me to the house where the older kid on Flipper, Luke Halpern, I think, lived. The studio where Flipper was filmed was just up the road from Dorothy's house but you couldn't see much from the road.

Dorothy was a nurse who worked in a surgeon's office. She worked half-days on Wednesday; once each summer (or maybe only a couple of times, but it seems like more than that) she'd take Betty and me to work with her on a Wednesday. We loved that. We felt so grown up.

We took day trips to the Everglades. Of course, the mosquitos were terrible in the summer, but we went anyway. How lucky we were to be able to experience that.

When I was about 5, the whole family (Betty, me, Mom and Dad, Muck and Poppa) made the loooonnnnngggg drive to Key West. That was back in the day of the wooden bridges. I remember bumping over them, and I remember the smell of dead fish all over Key West. (There'd been a fish kill, maybe a red tide.) Key West was just a tiny town then, mostly military. I remember being so thirsty on that ride that I thought I'd die.

We took a trip from Miami to Boca Raton beach when it was actually still beach. It hadn't been built up. There were wonderful tide pools and lots of shells.

We'd play outside in the St. Augustine grass, that thick, springy grass that says "Florida" to us now. They had a cherry bush; sometimes they were ripe while we were there. They also had some bananas growing in the back yard; maybe once they were ripe when we visited. They were small, fat things that tasted almost like strawberries. On the side of the house brightly-colored snails crawled up the house; they'd fascinate us for whole minutes at a time. (Note to self: Proofread. Shells didn't crawl up the wall of the house; snails did. And learn to type.)

We'd all sit on the porch while the sun went down and it was cool enough to actually stay outside for a while. Then the mosquito truck would rumble by and we'd be shooed inside, quickly closing the jalousie windows so the poison wouldn't get in.

Those were the days.

Forever, vacation is Florida. I always have to go back. I feel as though I'm home in Florida, even though I've never lived there. If we're able to retire, that's where we're going.

George Honey is intertwined in all of those memories. He had these tattoos on his arms (Navy days) and they fascinated us. We'd climb all over him like little monkeys and he'd just laugh.

When I can find it, I'll share a photo of George I took several years ago, just as he was beginning his slide into dementia. I had taken tiny Mia, my elderly Yorkshire Terrier, with me for the weekend. She was a skittish little thing, very highly strung, very dainty, and she didn't take to many people. She adored George and he held her for a long time, talking to her, pretending to cut her hair, and she just ate it up. Mia left us shortly after that, but I'll always remember how she enjoyed that day.

Betty said it best:

"It's so sad to think of George being gone, but you are right...he hasn't been George for a while, although we would still see glimpses from time to time. He's such a part of our childhood that it's hard to see him go, but I know that it's really a blessing....he couldn't have been very happy the way he was and who knows how he was treated at the nursing home when Dorothy wasn't there. Dear, sweet, funny George....he always treated us so nicely, even though it couldn't have been all that much fun for him to have all of us kids around for two weeks at a time! I hope he knows how much we love him."

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Down in the hollar

Okay, I'll grudgingly admit that it is pretty in the fall.

On the wildlife front, we were visited by the Turkey family again yesterday evening. It appears to be Mrs. Turkey and her seven little ones, who have grown quite a bit since I last saw them. They were pretty brave; Momma came as far as the citrus tree out front while the rest hung out around the trees. I think that Momma was scouting out the corn, but she just didn't feel safe enough to lead the brood up to the house. She stayed between them and the house pretty much the entire time they were passing through.

I took the photos through the front window; the slightest sound sends them skittering away (alliteration!).

It looks like there's one male, or maybe I just don't know how they differ in looks.

For some reason, the following photo tickles me:

In this picture, it looks like there are two mommies, one on each end. I love the way they appear to be keeping guard on the young 'uns.

Momma got this close to the porch before she shied away:

Gotta run--later!!!

The drama continues

Several people have suggested that perhaps some original copies could be misplaced. I wouldn't do anything like that. Would I?

So anyway, the terribly important ASAP copies sat on the counter in here until 3:30, as I was leaving. She strolled in and casually asked me if she'd worn me out. I just laughed and passive-aggressively headed into the bathroom. She picked up her copies and left. Didn't even notice that about half of them hadn't been done.

Since I finished all the work that I could possibly dig up this morning, I ended up finishing her stuff. But since she'd taken the instruction page with her, I couldn't remember how many copies she wanted, so I may not have copied the correct number, and the copier jammed several times and some pages may have been lost. Oh well.

I know that in the long run this kind of behavior will make more work for me, but it felt so damn good. And I put hers off until everything else had been copied.

Juvenile, yeah, but I am the passive-aggressive queen.

Some of those ASAP copies are still sitting on the counter.

This morning several teachers brought in stuff that they needed right then (can we say "plan ahead", children?), 70 or 80 copies of each set, but they brought them in themselves instead of sending a student, and they apologized for the inconvenience. And since I was already copying Thursday and Friday's stuff, it wasn't a problem.

Being polite will get you far in this world.

I'm thinking of putting out a jar labeled "Tips Appreciated". I wonder how that would be received.

Monday, October 06, 2008


Hmmmppphhh. She hasn't gotten her terribly important, I-nned-them-all-right-now copies that she dumped here Saturday, but she just sent a student in with four more things to copy.

My weekend

Gorgeous weather, nice and sunny and warm. Kind of end-of-summer warm, with the trees turning color and the threat of frost soon. I think that this is the latest we've gone without frost for a long while. I hope it continues. I'm enjoying my geraniums.

I gave the SAT on Saturday morning, which is good for about $100. It takes about 6 hours, but it's worth it. Then we went home after eating in a pizza place that we've always liked but seems to have lost its charm (what little it had). If you like observing the people who come out of the boonies on a Saturday afternoon, it's a good place.

I'm on Cipro for 10 days for yet another UTI, and it's doing a number on me. At least, I hope that's what it is. I've felt like someone pulled the plug on me, just totally drained. The first thing I did was check my lips and gums; they're not white, so I guess it's not stomach bleeding again.

So basically I slept all day Saturday after we got home. I had a low-grade fever, so I couldn't get comfortable; either too hot or two cold. I didn't even go outside in the sun, although it would have done my vitamin D levels some good. I got up and ate a little supper then went back to bed. Tom was up and down as well. I slept until 12:30 on Sunday, then ate breakfast and went outside for a while. The sun felt so good; the sky was an incredible cloudless blue.

After that, I forced myself to mop the hardwood floor, then plopped on the couch and knit for the next few hours.

I restarted my wrap during the SAT (on size 10 needles this time) and got about 11 inches done, at which time I remembered that I was supposed to make a buttonhole at 10". Oh well, I'm tall. By the time I went to bed last night (around 7) I'd knit one ball of yarn and Tom had helped me wind the second. All was well as I wound it (I'd draped the hank over my knees, as usual, because 1) it's too much trouble to get up and get the swift and winder; and 2) neither fit on any surface in the house) until it caught on something and started tangling. Zippy sat in front of me and woofed every few seconds; I kept telling him to lie down since he'd just been outside. He continued woofing, I looked down, and there was Chester the Cat entangled in the yarn.

I should always listen to Zippy.

So that was my thrilling weekend. This morning I once again feel brochitis coming on. I'm so happy about it.

And someone (and I know who) came into my office on Saturday and rearranged the copying jobs that I'd prioritized before I left Friday and left her stack (and I mean enough pages to kill a forest) on top with ASAP written on each job. Saturday morning, during the SAT, I came into my office to run a job, found her pages, and rearranged them in my order. A couple of hours later, her things were back on top. I am so irritated.

To top it all off, several pages that have to be copied by tomorrow, 1400 pages each for the school's newsletter, had disappeared. They were on top of the stack on the printer that had also been rearranged. I've ransacked my office and they're nowhere to be found. Probably they're stuck to something she sat down and picked up. This caused a ripple of panic and a frantic attempt to get copies of the last four pages, which hadn't been saved on the secretary's computer because they were sent by someone else.

But we managed to get the copies, all is well, and she hasn't shown her face to pick up her ASAP copies (enough for the entire six weeks, come to think of it; there's no way her classes could go through all that stuff in one morning). And if she does, they won't be ready. Because I'm passive-aggressive like that.

Friday, October 03, 2008

No wonder my shoulder hurts

This is the bag that I carry with me. Everywhere. Every day.

It must weigh 25 pounds. I don't know what's so heavy, unless it's that book that I'm reading for the library's book club. It's really thick. Yarn isn't that heavy. I have my wrap yarn in the lovely Walmart bag and my emergency backup knitting in the cute little tote bag. I have a couple of knitting books in there, a newspaper or two, some other crap, and I'm not digging any farther in there. It's scary. Stuff gets all compacted in the bottom and I'm not going through it now.

At least I don't have a laptop to lug around now. Like that's any solace.

On the hoof

It's Homecoming week, complete with theme days. A couple of days ago was Country Day, so our resident organic farmer brought in a show-and-tell.

Last year he brought a cute, cuddly little lamb. Wool on the hoof.

Good grief

Three whole weeks. Three service calls. New parts ordered and replaced. And still:

Then tray by tray, the "good" one started failing.

At least I got some knitting and yarn in that photo. (The to-be-frogged wrap.)

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Casting off again


I've knit about 8" of my new wrap using worsted-weight yarn and size 8 needles. That's what I swatched with and it seemed like it made a nice, drape-able fabric. Uh uh. It's too tight. It looks great, but it needs to be looser, to flow better.

So I have to rip it all out and start over again. And I don't have bigger needles with me, so it'll have to wait till I have them.

I could cry.

At least I have my Tropical Tee with me for emergency knitting.

We got winners!

This was hard to judge, trying to decide who was funniest. There's some good stuff here. So I threw it to the random number generator.

Therefore, Elaine wins the Peter Cooper cd and some kind of yarn that I'll dig up to go with it.

Second, Tom-who-is-not-my-husband wins some yarn.

And third, but not third in my heart, rachel o also wins some yarn.

Please contact me with your email addresses, or you can email me your mailing info (m post at harrisonburg dot k12 dot va dot us).

Elaine, I really hope that you'll like Peter's music. He's one of a kind, a good kind.

And he has really cool hair.

A quote I lifted from Peter's website:

"He's a story searcher, a star singer, a balladeer, a town crier; a historian in the grand poetic tradition of chanted verse."
- Folkwax

Do we ever win?

Remember our new hardwood floor? Yeah, that $4000 hickory floor. The one that we're enjoying so much.

It's warping and cracking. In many places. Tom's brother will come over to inspect it. (His brother's family owns a flooring store, and they installed it.) I'm sure they'll fix it; they run a very reputable place with quality products.

But right now, we are not pleased. With the floor, not the family.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

The boy, again

B2 is going to be a box for Halloween. J wrote,

"Yep, I'm going put some straps on a box and write on it. "Yes, I chose to be a box for Halloween. I am 4 years old. I think outside of the box." Even though he is actually inside the box... people will get it, I hope. He'll be thrilled... unless it rains."

He entertains me.


"I think he just ignores people he doesn't like, anyway. he seems so strong- not at all like A. For example, HalloScream Horror nights are now going on at Universal. They have ghastly commercials on all the time, and the billboards are everywhere. A is scared out of her mind- doesn't even want to look in a mirror at night because "Bloody Mary might come" to her soul!!! I hate those damn commercials. They should not be allowed to be aired during children's programs or during the day, for that matter. They freak me out. On the way home from Preschool today, B2 told me that he wants to go to Universal and stay at their hotel and go to HalloScream. I said, of course, "Are you out of your mind, child???!!! That's scary. I'm not going there." He said, "Well, I want to go." Weirdo. People under 18 can't even go. When the commercial comes on, B2 screams with delight, and laughs, while pretending it's just sooooo scarey. A screams "TURN IT OFFFFFFF!!!" So, who knows, it's probably just the attention he gets from A.