Thursday, February 26, 2009

I was given a gift today

I was thinking this morning how much I'd like to be able to take a mental health day.

It wasn't going to happen since I've used all of my personal leave (all three days of it) and most of my sick leave for the school year.

It's not like I'm against using sick leave for mental health leave. I've done it before. Good mental health certainly helps to keep me physically healthy.

Shortly after I thought about it and semi-mourned the fact that it couldn't be done, I was called into the principal's secretary's office.

My first thought was, "Uh oh, what have I done?" knowing perfectly well that I hadn't deliberately done anything wrong.

That's when I was given the gift of having tomorrow off. With pay. And not a day of sick leave, either.

My used-to-be boss had ear surgery last week and has been unable to drive. She has a doctor's appointment tomorrow morning in a city an hour from here. I'm going to drive her. This won't be even remotely a hardship; it'll be fun to have time to talk to her. We still eat lunch together a couple of times a week, but we used to be in the same office all day long for over three years, talking as much as working usually. Our desks were just a few feet apart, but we'd email funny things to each other even though we could have just talked instead. We did both.

She has really treated me like an equal, not like her helper monkey assistant. She's one of the sweetest people I know.

So. I get to sleep later than usual, then spend the day with a friend. I bet she'll even buy me lunch.

I love my job.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I finished the legwarmers

Whew. I thought they'd never be done! I can't wait to wear them. I still have to weave in the ends; there were knots in most of the 5 hanks I used, so I had to pull them out and will weave them in. 116 yards per hank, almost 5 hanks, so about 500 yards total. I could have knit a nice warm wrap with that amount of yarn. One of them is darker and more vibrant than the other, but since they won't be seen in public, it doesn't matter. Actually, it wouldn't matter to me anyway. That's the charm of hand-dyed yarns. I don't bother to alternate rows with this stuff; it would just drive me crazy.

I'm about 1/4 of the way through Eclipse which is book number three of the Twilight series. I roll my eyes a lot, but the plot keeps me reading. I'm getting tired of Edward's overprotectiveness of Bella, but the story's good enough to keep reading it. I haven't seen the movie yet and probably won't; once I get a book in my head (or as long as it stays there, anyway), I don't like to see how someone else envisioned it. If it's too different from my thoughts, then I have a difficult time enjoying it.

It was ZERO this morning. I'm so ready for warm weather!

**UPDATE**3/6/09 Crap. I finished Breaking Dawn tonight, and now I have to see the movie when it's on dvd. I should never say never.

Monday, February 23, 2009


We woke up to a little snow this morning. Unfortunately it was only on the WV side of things, so I had to go to work at the usual time.

We had a nice, quiet weekend at home. I did a lot of reading (I'm on book 3 of the Twilight series), watched the last two episodes of 24 on the laptop, watched "Little Miss Perfect" on WE (I know one of the mother/daughter teams on last week's show), and knit a LOT.

So, did any of you see "Little Miss Perfect", and if so, I'd love to hear your thoughts. Honestly, I expected it to be a lot harsher on the moms. A has done pageants since she was 6 months old and I've gone to a lot of them, so I know what goes on behind the scenes. "Pageant Mom" has a bad connotation, and for good reason. My daughter, though, is one of the good ones. She doesn't cut down the competition or bad mouth anyone; she goes out of her way to be helpful to the others, loaning (and borrowing) clothing and accessories, doing hair and makeup for other kids. She buys dresses and other clothing on ebay and removes the "stuff" already on it, then takes it apart and resews it to fit A, adding crystals and beading and coming up with something that no one else has. One dress A wore for over two years; J would change the neckline, add and subtract bows and glitz and change things around. I think she's still using that dress; J has saved big bucks that way.

I enjoyed watching that show because I know some of the people, and because A and J were asked to participate way back last summer while I was visiting. The producer and a couple of helper monkeys came to their house and interviewed the family, asking leading questions. They emphasized that this was to be a positive reflection of pageant participation, but the questions they asked led us to believe otherwise. J and M decided that it wasn't in A's best interest to be on the show. I think it was a wise decision.

Okay, the knitting. I've almost finished those legwarmers. I actually finished the second one; then, since I'd forgotten to use smaller needles on the ankle and foot of the first one, I pulled all of that out and started over at the ankle. I've turned the heel, so it shouldn't take too much longer to finish it. The foot was just too big to stuff into my clogs, so I'm going for the footless variety.

No photos. I haven't even taken the camera out of the bag for a while. But I do have this photo of Chester and Zippy:

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Now I remember

I hate answering phones.

Really, I hate all phones, but worst of all I hate answering the phones in the main office.

If it were just the phones, it wouldn't be so bad, but the nurse leaves in the morning and I have to answer the phones and hand out medicine. At the same time.

It wasn't so bad a few hours ago. I felt on top of things. I had things in control. Until I had lunch.

Since then six lines ring at once and four kids come in to get meds, pick up their provisional learners permit, and then I have to call a cab for a kid. Because she can't wait the 5 miinutes until the city transit bus stops here or the hour until the school buses show up. Because she's sniffling and holding her cheek and whining.

I told her to watch for the cab. A half hour later (25 minutes AFTER the transit left and 30 minutes until school lets out and the buses arrive, in case you're keeping score), she came back in and asked me to call the cab company again. (I hate making phone calls.) I asked her if she'd been looking out front, which is where the cab would be. She said yes. So I called the damn cab company again, and the woman says the cab has been waiting out front for 15 damn minutes.

I hate working in here.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Happy Birthday, Baby Girl!

Today is J's birthday. Last year I wrote about her birth, so I won't do that again, except to say that it's one of the best things that ever happened to me.

I love you, J! Happy birthday, and many, many more to come.

Toner shortage is over

Four boxes came in this week, two bottles each. That might last a week or two.

And now I can pay back that one bottle I begged from Guidance.......

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

So, would you like to see what we did Saturday night?

I'll show you anyway. I'm mean like that.

Joan, Scott, Liz, and Berend (Joan's daughter and her boyfriend) (Liz's boyfriend, not Joan's) went with Tom and me to Ashland Coffee and Tea Saturday night for a show by Eric Brace and Peter Cooper, our absolute favorite singers. (Go to their website and listen to their music. I'd rather listen to them--and Last Train Home--than anyone else. Yes, Betty, even more so than Neil Diamond!)

Joan and I are a little....obsessed (but in a good way) with these guys. We had such a good time listening to the music, talking about the music, talking to Eric and Peter, talking to our husbands, enjoying the food, and trying to reassure Liz that we wouldn't totally embarrass her. (Thanks, Betty!)

They played a mix of their own songs, songs from their duo cd, and songs that they haven't recorded. Their voices are so different, but they blend together so well. The harmonies are so beautiful.

Kevin Cordt, who is part of Last Train Home and also a jazz group, took the train from DC to the coffee shop. The stop is literally feet from the entrance.

Here you can see some of the studding on Peter's suit.

Rumor has it that he paid $40 for the suit. I'm guessing that having the crystals put on cost a whole lot more than that.

Legwarmer socks

It's really difficult to take a photo of these things that show the actual length! When pulled all the way up, they're above my knees. They're then doubled over at the ankle, making a nice, thick anklewarmer.

I decided that I don't like having the full sock; it doesn't fit in my clogs. So when I finish the second one, I'll take the foot off the first and knit ribbing at the instep. Maybe it'll still cover enough of my foot that I won't freeze there.

I could have used them last night; I was just freezing, even with the electric heater just a few feet away. I would have finished them Saturday on the way to Mom and Dad's, but I didn't bring the smaller dpns that I needed to finish the ankle and foot. Oh well. Maybe tonight.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Terror alert HIGH!

Where has my blog gone???????????

Amended: Oh. There it is.


Friday, February 13, 2009

Toner shortage continues

I managed to score 4 bottles of toner today. We're not due to get our shipment till the end of the month (and that's if I believe Xerox), and I had to put the last bottle I had left into one of the copiers yesterday.

At a time when jobs in this division are likely to be cut, I don't want to run out of toner now. I need to keep busy.

I'm hearing some really heartwarming feedback from the faculty, though. It's nice to be told that I'm doing a good job. I appreciate it. I mean, I know that I'm doing a good job, I get things done fast and before they're due, but it's nice to hear it.

On the knitting front, I'm plugging along on my thigh-high legwarmers. I've done about 12" of the second one. Another 6 or so inches and I'll be able to turn the heel, knit a couple of inches in k2p2, then bind off. That day can't come soon enough, although then I'll have to rip out most of the foot of the first one and do the ribbing. They're just too thick to be worn with my good ol' Birkenstocks. But thick is good when it's cold (which it hasn't been for a week--not that I'm complaining, and I hear it will be this weekend).

Tomorrow night we're off to Ashland to see Eric Brace and Peter Cooper. Tom and Scott will tolerate Joan and I drooling panting thoroughly enjoying the hair the view the music. If Liz and Berend are brave enough to come along, I know we'll embarrass them. But give us a break, kids, and don't mess with our high. We old ladies can be tough bitches cookies.

Not that you're old, Joan, really.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Today has been a sloooowwwww day. It didn't help that we had an electricity outage during the night and someone reset the clock. It wasn't until we got to school that we realized that it was still dark, no one was there, and huh, it was only 6. I asked if we could just hang out there and let me sleep till 7, but that didn't work because a teacher came in really early, saw a man sitting in a car (my seat was reclined, and I was out), called the custodians (TWO of them) who then came out and asked what Tom was doing there. I sat up, said hi, and "Oh, hi! Mrs. -- was scared and asked us to come out." So I gave up and went in to work at 6:15. *sigh*

I really really don't do well without enough sleep. I'm not sure I've ever had enough sleep.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

What do you mean it's only Tuesday?

And not even 2:30, at that?

Friday, February 06, 2009

Eye stuff

I had an appointment with my retinologist yesterday (a whole day off school!) (yes, that's the second one this week, thank you). My eye is continuing to improve, thank goodness. So no more Lucentis injections this week.

I thought I was coming down with the flu last night, but today I'm just very tired. I'm glad it's Friday.

Have a lovely weekend! It's supposed to be almost warm this weekend.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

At least it was pretty

Last night:

This morning:

If you look closely (click on photo), you can see some snow falling off. As the morning went on (and I only saw a few minutes of the morning before I went back to bed) it looked like little avalanches as the snow slipped off.

It's beautiful, but it's cold. And I am oh, so tired of being cold.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Have I mentioned lately that I hate winter?

If not, here's a reminder.

It started snowing about 15 minutes before I left work today. By the time I'd gotten say, 15 minutes out of town, the roads were covered and traffic was going about 40 mph; by the time I hit the mountain, it was about 5 mph. It took about 25 minutes to go over the mountain; even with the state trucks salting the road, it was terrible. Trailer-trucks and little cars slid all over the place; the rest of us crept over the mountain at about 5 mph. A trip that usually takes 40 minutes took an hour and 10 minutes.

By putting the Camry into low gear, I was able to burn an inch or so off the tires and make it up our driveway. I've never driven in weather this bad. Ever.

And I never want to, again.

I'm hoping that school will be, at the least, delayed an hour or two tomorrow. It's supposed to snow all night (a full 4" is predicted, with another inch or so tomorrow. That is, if the local weather forecasters are right. And they rarely are.)

I hear that the VA General Assembly may put together a buy-out package for us old people so we can retire up to 5 years early.

I'm waiting.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Contest stuff

Jennygirl, Georgi, and Karin, please send your mailing info to me at rita knits at g mail dot com. I'm actually getting things together.

I may actually mail things someday.

Thank you!!!


I'm not a football fan. In fact, I dislike all sports. I missed the sports gene, and I'm sincerely happy about it.

So, while people everywhere are celebrating football, I'll be trying very hard not to know who's playing.

Thank you for indulging me.