Friday, August 28, 2009
Good copier ate shit and died this afternoon. Okay, maybe not really, but that's what I was thinking. It wouldn't get over its little temper tantrum ("internal motor failed" or some such crap) after I let it sit, turned off, for an hour. Usually that'll take care of it, but not today. So it can sit there and rust. I'm not calling the tech guy today.
I'll probably regret that on Monday. Or maybe it'll decide to play nice again if it rests for 2.5 days.
A new realtor (#3) is taking someone to see the homestead today. Have I said that before? I can't remember what I wrote last night. Zippy kept interrupting; Tom had gone to bed early, not feeling well (which was no doubt related to his head injury on Wednesday), and Zip just can't handle having me in the living room while Tom's asleep. It's supposed to be the other way around.
Where was I? Oh, the 3rd realtor had someone who wanted what we want to get rid of, and he asked if he could stop by today as they have three other properties they're looking at in the area. We haven't even signed with this guy; he's the first one who sounded like he had any idea about what/how to sell in WV. I'm hoping the guy will buy the place so we can get on with the next part of our lives. I feel like I'm living in this limbo; can't quite leave this place but can't go to the next. I'll feel better once things are more settled.
The cat house. The house that we want. The place we've been mentally renovating and imagining ourselves enjoying the pool. The house that's now has a sale pending financing. That makes me anxious. Dammit, WE saw that place in June, WE went through it twice, WE've been trying to figure out how to get it before it was sold. Actually, I didn't think it would sell.
If that one goes through, there's a back-up plan, if that one doesn't sell first. The other one is a bigger house although in odd rooms, such as a tiny living room that stretches across the front of the house (it's not very deep, although it would function just fine) and the dining room/kitchen stretched out the depth of the house along one side. It has 2 bedrooms with wonderful closets, a den/office, and three bathrooms. Yes. Three. It has a small yard, fenced with a low stone fence, a deck out back, a hot tub, a big storage building/shop, and an outdoor shower. No pool and no room for one, but this place has dropped so low that we could probably just pay for it outright after our house sells.
So. That's how it is going into the weekend. I'll be anxious until we buy a place, but I'll manage.
If I can.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
I started over The Wedding Stole, v. 3.2, again last night. Again, after the second row, I had two too few stitches. That means that I must have missed a couple of yarn-overs, but frogging back to find them is much too difficult with so many s2kpssos in the stupid row. I end up with a tangled mess. I'm too lazy to run a lifeline after each row. I'm guessing that I'll go to a garter stitch shawl and just add beads wherever I want. So right now, Elaine is the frontrunner for the prize.
This getting up before the asscrack of dawn is wearing me out. Even if I'm tired, I can't go to sleep until 10 or after. I'm up at 6, but not voluntarily. I'm fortunate enough to have a wonderful husband who turns off the alarm clock and lets me sleep (desperately clinging to the bed) another few minutes. He then gently tells me it's time to get up (and even calls me sweetheart), fixed a travel mug of tea, gathers my lunch and snacks, and hands it to me with a kiss as I stumble out the door, telling me to drive carefully. That's so sweet of him.
I like getting out of work at 3. It makes the evening feel a little longer. Now that it's definitely getting dark earlier, I'm always asking Tom what time it is and I'm suprised that it's only 8.
We're watching a lot of HGTV and DIY home-improvement shows, trying to get ideas for selling this house and
We still love Hopewell, though, and have many fond memories of the times we spent there. I can remember going to Nana's house and getting a glass of water and watching the particulate matter swirl in the vaguely brownish water. Good times, people.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
I started knitting The Wedding Stole again last night. I got through 8 entire rows, one who repeat, before I messed up. You see, on that eight row, I thought, "I really should run a lifeline now," but I didn't listen to myself. As usual. Halfway through row 9, I was off by one stitch. One. Stitch. How can one stitch mess things up so much?
I'm trying the Spring Tulip stole on Ravelry, at least, I think it is. It looks very elaborate, but it's just a series of 8 rows of the same 8 stitches over and over and over. I was even starting to memorize it last night. I'm still listening to your suggestions and printing the patterns (when they're free) because I'm fairly certain that I'm going to mess this one up beyond tolerance too.
If I end up knitting something other than one you've suggested, I'll just use the ol' random number generator to chose a winner. I'm not going to put a deadline on it yet because I'll continue to mess them up for another month or so.
Another real estate agent toured the homestead today. We weren't very taken with RE Lady #1. She didn't seem to anxious to get things going. RE Lady #2 said not to replace the carpets, they're in good shape, just declutter and get stuff out of the house. We are having a 10' x 10' deck built on the back of the house, which will make it look a little more finished. We'll still paint, but not a whole facelift. She'll send comps tomorrow. I'm interested to see if her price range is the same as the first one.
I hope we sell this fast. We really want that house in Big Pine Key (one of these days I'll put up some photos so you can just how
The xerographic module for Bad Copier arrived, but I wasn't notified because no one seemed to notice that big box with Xerox written on it and my name in bold letters on the label. I stuck that sucker into the machine and I've been fighting with the copier ever since. It still wants to jam frequently. It's now making an awful groaning sound as it drags paper through its belly. It was nice and quiet last week for the half hour it's worked this school year. I'm caught up, but I'm exhausted from the battle.
B2 started public kindergarten yesterday. He'd had two years of church preschool under his belt, but I don't think that's equal to the task of molding him into a productive student. He's got his own ideas about how things are run and he is not afraid to insist. Authority figures don't scare him any. He loves the principal of the school, and he was introduced to the in-school suspension teacher and loves her, which really isn't in his best interests, but he doesn't know that yet. His first day went fairly uneventfully, as far as we know so far. He did have a littttttllllleee trouble being quiet while in line, which we expected.
His teacher just happens to work part time at Disney, and she just happens to have the job that B2 aspires to: tour guide on the Backlot Movie tour at Hollywood Studios. I'm sure now that he's convinced it's a match made in heaven. He's quite a talkative child, and I expect him to monopolize many of the school lessons--or attempt to.
A loves her teacher (4th grade) and her year started well. She had a bit of trouble staying quiet in kindergarten, but she's not the chatterbox that B2 is. It amazes me how much she's matured over the last six months. She now writes some long emails that make sense; she's writing a book of stories. She's learned to text (but not how to put spaces between words). She's a whiz at computer games and loves to read.
Forty-five minutes and I can go home. Can you tell how much I want to retire and leave work forever?
2 days down, 178 to go. This year.
Monday, August 24, 2009
I've had the (one) copier running without cessation since 7 a.m. I've gone through over 20 reams (500 sheets each) of paper. I'm surprised that the staples haven't had to be refilled. Toner is lasting about 1.5 days; usually it lasts for closer to a week.
I've gotten every freaking thing done for tomorrow. The last is in the copier now, and it's not too many copies.
I am ready to go home.
One of our teacher assistants said that he saw a boy walking into school with his head on his pillow which he was holding by his shoulder. Why? He'd slept on the bus and wasn't quite ready to wake up.
My kind of boy!
Day 1 down. 179 remaining.
Saturday, August 22, 2009
I turned the copier off and on a couple of times, then let it sit and cool off, and finally it started working again. If it hadn't, I'd have cannibalized the xero module from it and put it in the other machine. Maybe that would have worked.
But I'm done. I'm betting, though, that when I go in on Monday morning, there will be more waiting for me. Needed to be done right now. RIGHT NOW!
But I'll deal with that on Monday. Right now I'm going to my happy place.
Some plastic roller doohickey fell out of it, but it seems to be working without it.....
If it stops again, I'll just yank its xerographic module and put it in the other machine. Then that one should work.
At least the end is in sight.
Still no progress on finding the right lace stole with beads that I can actually understand and follow. I've got The Stupids again. I don't know why it should be so bad; I stopped taking Neurontin (for the cough, although it worked for that) because it made me feel so thick and slow. I haven't taken ambien since June; that should cut down on the stupid factor, I'd think. Evidentally working with these machines is what's doing it to me, since it didn't seem to be so pervasive during the summer.
I so want to knit a beautiful, elegant, beaded shawl/stole for Joan to wear on her Special Day (her daughter's wedding day). It's not something that's under my control. I have to do this for my own mental health even though it seems to be a total brain drain. Joan's wearing a lovely chiffony-fly-y sleeveless dress (the first or second weekend of November) with front and back v-necks. It's screaming for a light-weight, cobwebby-dewdrops sort of wrap, something that will give her a tiny illusion of warmth without covering the dress too much. Maybe I'm the only one who hears its screams, but it's driving me insane. It. Must. Be. Knit. I don't care if I have to pay for the pattern. I've already bought one (Pampas) that I can't for the life of me understand. So far I haven't been able to knit the two free ones I printed. Somewhere there has to be a beautiful, gossamer dewy stole that I can comprehend.
If anyone links me to a photo/pattern that fits my needs, and I pick it, I'll reward that person with something from my stash. I'm getting desperate here. I don't want to buy a book of patterns, but I don't mind buying a single pattern. I'd really prefer something rectangular, but I'll consider a shawl. Trillian, you're already in the pool.
I've spent over four hours copying crap that isn't that important but has to be done by Monday. So ten minutes ago I got this internal error message that the motor has failed and it won't copy.
I've turned it off several times, as that will usually reset it and it'll work again, but I'm at my wits' end. If it doesn't work this time, it's toast.
And I'm going home. I've had enough.
Friday, August 21, 2009
I hadn't knit any of the wedding stole in days, so I thought I'd try one row. Who needs a lifeline? This is pretty easy.
So no lifeline. Now no life.
I messed up that row so bad that it can't be undone. I'll have to rip the entire thing out to get to the point where I know what to do--and that's to start over completely. I do not have the strength to restart this thing. I've messed up at the same stinking point twice, with two different yarns, and I cannot do it again.
So I'm looking online again for a pattern that is simple enough for a dunce to follow, and it has to be laceweight. Oh, and it has to have thousands of beads.
Aren't there any beautiful patterns that are also really simple? Like simple enough to do in the evenings when work has totally defeated me and my mind no longer works? Somewhere?
I threw copies into the one good copier all day long, as fast as I could, and just pulled out the piles of copies and stacked them on the counter, leaving them to sort out after the machine was good and full. Late this afternoon, a teacher saw her stuff in the pile and started digging it out, another saw what she was doing, and so on, and so on. In three minutes things were totally f^cked up and I couldn't figure out what finished copies went to whom. They were worse than teenagers in the way they acted.
Really made me mad, but I kept it in, kept smiling (through my teeth; one teacher even asked if I'd had braces because my teeth are "perfect" [HA!]) and kept working. At 3:30 I knew I wasn't going to finish today, so I stacked up everything that HAS to be done Monday morning and left.
(By the way, a part was delivered for Bad Copier--the freaking wrong part. For a few minutes I actually thought I might finish today and not have to go in this weekend. I had to call Xerox again and have them send the right part--Tuesday or Wednesday.)
Tom had come into town this morning to pick up materials for a small deck to be built on the back of the house off the kitchen/dining room; he took one load home and came back for a second, then picked me up. I noticed that he was steering with one hand and was holding the other oddly. He smashed three fingers on his left hand while unloading the first load. Suhmashed. His "bird" finger looks like hamburger, extra rare, and the other two are badly bruised. He wouldn't go to the ER to have them cleaned and bandaged because it was just smashed, nowhere to put stitches. So it hurts like hell and he can't do anything. We have plenty of percocet, but that doesn't do anything for his pain. When we were in Baja California four years ago, he reinjured his back and could not sleep, sit down, or lie down even though he was taking two of them every hour.
He's gone to bed, hoping that he can sleep through the pain.
Some time tomorrow I'll drive back into town and see if I can finish my work by dark. I will not be getting up early. I just hope that Good Copier doesn't let the praise go to its head and quit working before school is allllll ready to open early Monday morning.
P.S. I managed to totally forget my purse this evening when I left school. Shit. I hope it's still there when I go in tomorrow. I was thinking at least I'd have the phone to use as a camera if I needed it (really cool clouds on the way home; looked like a really huge storm), but then I realized that the damned camera is in my damned purse.
*s i g h*
I finished A's pink Panda Silk ankle socks (with beads on the ribbing) Tuesday evening as we drove to the airport which happened to be 600 miles away and on the other side of the Washington Beltway. I mean, I didn't drive, Mike did, so I sat in the back (between) the two kids (Do not make me stop this car!) and we played with the Crack and I knit.
Aside--A CrackBerry is a wonderful, albeit expensive, little way to
I haven't knit any more of the wedding stole. That requires attention to detail, and I just haven't had the time to pay attention to it. Maybe this weekend.
We're slowly packing things, deciding what to keep, what to sell, what to give away, what to throw away. Mostly books so far. Tom's numbering the boxes and keeping track with a spreadsheet.
Today he's hauling stuff for a small deck that will be added to the back of the house. We have a list of things to do from the real estate agent, mostly cosmetic, mostly things that we can do ourselves, although I'm outsourcing the painting. My niece is a fast, neat painter who actually likes to do it. I hate to, so we'll pay her. We have to fix up the (long) driveway (rain over the last few years has played havoc and it's like a thrill ride) (without the thrill), clean the garage and master bedroom roughed in over it (mostly sweeping), and take just about every personal thing we own out of the house and store it----WHERE?
I've put the place on Craig's List for the DC area; for some reason, people who live in that area like to have a little mountain hideaway. I also listed it on our school system's online bulletin board and almost immediately had a request for more information. This person seems to be interested in hunting; I get that vibe from the emails (Does it border the National Forest? Are there other hunters nearbly?) for some reason. I do not want to know that anyone is going to hunt our babies.
Three more hours and the weekend technically starts for me; probably not, because with only one copier working and hundreds of things to copy, I'll probably be back this weekend. I sent an email out and people are being very understanding. Most of them.
If I don't surface again any time soon, have a lovely weekend!
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Right again, don't it feel great, blahblahblah.
As an adult, I've realized that I feel better when I have a tan. For most of my life, however, science has pounded into our heads (okay, so I'm a little sensitive about the subject) that sun = cancer. I've been very careful not to burn and use sunblock when I'm on the beach, but without skin color, I feel exhausted, depressed, out of sorts, you name an unpleasant emotion, I've got it during the cold months.
The article linked above explains why this happens. I have a vitamin D deficiency.
I didn't realize that vitamin D is so closely tied to the problems I have in cold weather. I don't drink milk, occasionally eat yogurt, a little bit of cheese, so I don't get much vitamin D unless I spend time outside. When it's cold, I'm not going outside, and now tanning beds have such a nasty reputation that I don't want to use them.
I feel so good when the weather's warm and I can go outside every day. No wonder trips to Florida in the winter are so enticing. I feel like I genuinely need to spend time in the sunshine.
Too bad that living in a cold climate isn't considered a disability by employers. It is a disability when one dreads the end of summer and outright hates winter. I deal with intense depression and anxiety eight months of the year, but somehow I don't think I'd be approved for disability retirement.
I am so looking forward to living in the Keys!
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Copier update: Eight service calls to Xerox in 7 days, seven of them about the same stinking machine. The tech guy has been in four times in the last five days, spending hours each time trying to coax the damned things to breathe on their own. He was here today when I got back from lunch (the one freaking time I've left) and proclaimed that both are now working. They both did work. For maybe an hour.
This morning the "good" copier suddenly dropped dead, giving an error message that said something about a fatal fault in the motor. Fortunately, rebooting it started it breathing on its own again, so I loaded it up again.
The tech guy did have the other one working when he left around 2. It was quiet, it was productive, it didn't smear the toner, it wasn't jamming. I breathed a sigh of relief and had both going at the same time--for one hour. Then, the "bad" one simply stopped dead and indicated that it won't make any more copies until the xerographic module is replaced. Shit. It's supposed to display that message for at least 10 days before it dies so one has time to order and receive the part. Evidentally the cannibalizing I'd done for the last ten days screwed up that part so I got no warning. I did receive a xero module yesterday, but it went into the "good" copier that had been displaying that freaking message for ten freaking days.
I called Xerox customer service. The kind lady gave me a code to enter which would give me an extra 5000 copies and might tide me over until the replacement module arrived. Theoretically. Because it didn't f^cking work.
I stayed an hour late trying to get things that were absolutely necessary to the continued survival of civilization, at least those needed by 1 p.m. tomorrow when "back to school" day starts and parents start coming in to listen to teachers, receive papers from them, and promptly forget/lose everything. I took jobs that came in at the last minute, such as, oh, 55 minutes after my scheduled quitting time and finished them. Damn, I'm good, even with one hand tied behind my back and one leg cut off.
I just now checked my email, and there's a polite note from a teacher wondering why she hadn't gotten the copies that she dropped off yesterday to be done today. I can't be positive because I can't remember what I did or did not see/copy after the thousands of copies I made today, but I don't remember seeing her copies, and I did every job that was on the shelf for yesterday and today. I replied without resorting to cursing or even sounding defensive, and I'll check the billions of copy requests to see if I can find her papers in the morning. I go in at the usual time, so with any luck I'll have three hours before the teachers show up.
As late as 3 this afternoon, I was telling people that I'm not stressed at all, as long as one copier is working, I can finish up everything needed by Monday morning when the little dears eagerly dash into the school to start yet another ride on the merry-go-round.
I'm stressed now. I think that I'll burst into tears and sob dramatically every time someone asks if their copies are done. That might at least keep them from talking to me.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Tech guy spent hours here yesterday afternoon working on the "bad" copier. Hours. HOURS. Still awaiting a part on back order. So what happens to the "good" copier this afternoon? A piece of paper jams in an area in which I've never had a paper jam before. Not only is it jammed, I cannot see the stinking paper, although I can hear it when I turn knob 5a to the right and wheel 5c clockwise. Or something. I can HEAR the paper in there, but I cannot find any way to open that area any more than I've opened it already.
So, another couple of hours when I can't do my job. Again. Papers are flooding in and need to be completed by Monday. Yesterday I wasn't worried, but I am now.
So when is it that I can retire?
I managed another 7 rows of knitting on the haunted wedding shawl last night. I'm placing the beads with a tiny crochet hook; they look so much better that way than when they're all strung onto the yarn and then pushed along as needed. That is such a hassle. Using a crochet hook is much slower while knitting, but it's easier, although I tend to send a lot of beads flying across the room.
J, M, and the kids are heading back to Orlando tonight. I hate to see them go. It was such a nice visit.
Monday, August 17, 2009
The tech guy was at school all afternoon Friday and took both copiers apart. Supposedly all was well. Until I turned them on this morning, then notsomuch.
Within an hour I called Xerox again because one of them was jamming constantly. It'd waste 4 pages for every one it successfully copied. And it's not like I really need two copiers running this time of year or anything.
I'm just glad that school didn't start today, just the teachers (and their copying needs) are back.
This afternoon the tech again took apart the bad copier and thinks he found the problem. I hope he's not only found it but fixed it. He said he's pretty much rebuilt it. I vote for two new copiers to replace the two that are broken more often than they're working.
And don't I just love people who need 40 copies, front, back, and stapled, at 1 p.m. and hand me the original at 12:45. You just then realized that you needed those copies for the meeting that was scheduled weeks ago?
My daughter and her family are here; they decided Tuesday night to fly up on Wednesday. I met them at the airport in Richmond and we got back to town around 1 a.m. Stayed in a hotel and went in to work late. They spent Thursday night with us; only A has been here before. Yesterday B2 was baptized along with two of his cousins at his grandma's church, and my son and his family came to the church too. We went out to eat and spent the rest of the day together. It's so seldom that my kids and their kids are all in the same place at the same time, and I enjoyed it.
Knitting? Did I mention that I want--n0, need to knit a shawl for my sister to wear at her daughter's wedding? I don't remember, and I'm too lazy to look. I've started several patterns many times with two different yarns. I keep messing up. No problem, I still have less than three months to finish it.
This is the latest incarnation of the wedding stole. It may get knit. This is yarn I bought on ebay; cashmere/silk for $5.99!
One day I'll get some photos on here of our Florida summer, the houses we like, etc etc etc. They load very slowly here at home and they're on my laptop, so I can't upload them at school unless I put them on a bunch of dvds first. Lazy.
And my oldest grandson says, The End.
Monday, August 10, 2009
I am so glad that teachers don't come back until Monday!
If I can remember and have the energy, I'll take photos of it tonight.
I also received today (beside the drugs we'd ordered) three other hanks of yarn, wool I think, maybe some silk in one of them, that I'd ordered last week while trying to decide what yarn to use for Joan's mother-of-the-bride (after all, it IS her day) shawl. I ended up starting it with some beautiful mohair laceweight yarn that I found 50% off in my LYS, but I'm rethinking that mistake. As much as I have to rip out, mohair ain't gonna cut it. Silk adds such nice shine to yarn, really dresses it up.
And it should be easier to frog.
When a new xerographic module or fuser is needed, it clearly states on the keypad that it's time to order one to have on hand. That usually gives me plenty of time to order it (they won't send them until they're needed) and get it in before the old one blows. But whoever was doing the copying this summer (and she is the woman who had the job before me) ignored the warning, so after spitting out a few copies, it stopped cold.
I have an extra fuser here, for some reason, but no xero module. I called the hotline and they're sending one out "priority", to get here tomorrow or the next day. We'll see. The person on the phone also gave me a code to enter into the machine that would give me an extra 5000 copies before it died for good. It was closer to 2000, but it did help.
Meanwhile, the "good" copier started printing pages with nothing on them--except black. Each page was totally black. I called Xerox again, and the tech walked me through removing the xero module (I'm sensing a pattern here), turning off the machine, waiting a minute, replacing the module, then turning it back on. Fortunately that resolved the problem.
But never fear, another popped up quickly. It started jamming every few pages. Not only was it irritating the hell out of me, it wastes a lot of paper (4 sheets every time it jams). Out of desperation I turned on the dehumidifier, and for the last few minutes the copier has been working properly. I don't know if that had anything to do with it, but I don't care as long as it works.
A couple came by yesterday to look at our property. It was the hottest day we've had this summer, and they wanted to walk around and see what it's like. I declined. They're not interested in the house, just want some remote land in WV where they can park their camper. I don't know if they'll be willing to pay the price we're asking if they don't want the house. I told them they could rent it out.
We're going through our "stuff" and throwing out/giving away as much as possible. I'm a pack rat and it's really hard for me to part with anything, but some of this crap I've been toting around for the past 21 years without ever looking into the boxes, so I think it's safe to say I don't need most of it.
And I decided that I had to make a shawl for my sister to wear to her daughter's wedding in November. I still haven't started Shipwreck; that's on the back burner for a looonnnggg time. I spent hours on Ravelry last week searching for the perfect pattern: lightweight, airy, beaded. Yeah, I just have to have beads on it. Joan doesn't care; it's my doing. So I started Pampas ( too lazy to link), which has three different lace charts (did I mention that it's LACE?????) and some stitches that I just could not for the life of me figure out how to do, so after two tries at it (it took me 2 hours just to knit the first row), I gave up and went back to Ravelry. I finally chose the easiest one that has beads, Piece of Pi, and started knitting. Of course I'm using mohair lace yarn, which means that it felts almost as soon as it's knit (just makes it difficult to rip out when I make errors. And do I make errors.) After three starts, I finally made it through the first twenty rows, which equals maybe 3 inches.
I don't do well with charts, even simple ones. I felt particularly stupid yesterday; I kept making really dumb mistakes. I may end up buying a shawl for Joan.
The stinking copier is jammed again. Where's my gun?
Saturday, August 01, 2009
I'm trying not to get too sucked into spending hours a day on Facebook and on here. That Crack was a lot of fun in Florida. They have 3G there; we don't in this area. We don't have a signal at all in this area. It was so much fun keeping up with my friends and family from my phone.
We're starting the (hopefully quick) process of selling the house and getting a place in the Keys. That was such a heavenly vacation, and living there for a month helped us decide that we do want to relocate there. So what if it's a two-hour drive to the nearest Costco? I drive 45 minutes to work, and the local Costco is 20 minutes past that.
I haven't been able to keep up with my favorite blogs this summer, and I miss them. I'll be going back to work soon......
Talk to you later--if there's anyone out there still checking in........