Sunday, October 29, 2006

Time Change! And now it's dawn when I wake up at 7am. It makes it much easier to wake up.
Dream: the alarm woke me from a really cool dream yesterday morning. I won't recount it here because face it, most people don't find other people's dreams all that interesting. But it was very vivid & mostly realistic. It wasn't nearly as surreal as many of my dreams.

MepaCon We are at the Holiday Inn in Scranton, PA. The first games were Friday, and we almost died at the evening game. There were only 4 of us at the table & the high level arcane (who forced it to APL 8) was not a very effective spellcaster. The gm was nice to us or it would have been a TPK in the first fight. I think he pitied us; 1st game of con, our 1st Keoish mod & three of us drove 8+ hours (plus bathroom & food breaks).

The afternoon game ran late so we ordered to go from the Hotel restaurant; Manhattan Drive Restaurant & Jazz Club. It was okay food.

Yesterday morning we ate the breakfast buffet there. The food was okay but not '$6.95 + drink' worthy. Our waitress was nice but this one woman, maybe the manager was rude enough that Rosemary complained to management. The woman had a serious attitude. We will not eat there again.

We played the 3rd part of the storyline from the game Friday night (which was the 2nd, the 1st is an intro mod, so we didn't play that one). Edana leveled. Now I have to decide whether to take her on the track to the Halfling Outrider prestige class (13th level for her first opportunity to take that, due to Feat requirements) or Order of the Bow Initiate. I have to check to see the requirements for that one.

The afternoon slot was great fun. One of the local players has a gnome who frequently tells jokes. The player is constantly telling one-liners & puns. We chuckled frequently. Most people were playing the BI (Battle Interactive) but Chris, Rosemary & I wanted to play Baby's Breath & it was only offered during the BI's second slot.

That evening, we had the same players although Chris & Rosemary changed PC's. We also added a couple players. Keoland mods are tough! They have heavy duty fights. We survived by the skin of our teeth sometimes.

Mepacon has great t-shirts. I'm going to buy some today. I already spent a lot of money with C.J. Henderson, their GOH (guest of honor). I bought some presents & he threw in a Cthulu calendar & a keychain (Texas Chainsaw Massacre).

Pennsylvania Weather: Friday was frigging cold! A real 'yeah, we're up north & in the mountains in October' kind of cold. Yesterday, it rained all day but it was much warmer (about 60F high). At supper, over about an hour, as the sun set, the temperature literally dropped about 4 degrees. Brrr. It was much colder coming out of the restaurant, Friendly's, than it had going inside.

Saturday: grey 'Liberation of Geoff' t-shirt with full color image on front & back. The front image is the Brenin & his family (wife & son), Gaunt the fey, the silenced Giantess, the Geoff regent, the fey who helped Duchess Calisse (Brenin's wife), her fey stag guide, a monolith, King Bhrodie of the giants, The Storm Giant, a couple anonymous Gyri, two figures I couldn't id, Gorna & the giant's floating city. The back one is a tree showing all 4 seasons & 'The Brenin is the Land' in a banner above & 'The Land is the Brenin' in a banner underneath. Plus I wore black jeans & tennis shoes. When necessary I added the black sweatshirt. I wore the harp pendant (since I played Nadia my bard the last 2 slots), longer ~knot earrings, the ~deco female pendant Richard bought for me in Germany, & the same rings (knot, flower band & silver rope band). I put my hair in a ponytail for convenience.

Today:blue jeans, navy 'Song of 3 Summonings' tee with full color on front & white on back (Calisse, Pwyll the seneschal/bard, & Snowmantle her 2nd fey guide for the front & the summoning song on the back with her fey helper). Plus I'll wear my white tennis shoes. I've French braided my hair for a change. I'm wearing my lapis earring so they really show with my hair pulled back. I've got on the same rings but today's pendant is the star & moon entertwined with Celtic knotwork.

Tatting: I've completed another snowflake, despite running out of thread on 1 shuttle & having to reload. I started the 2nd motif for the tat-along but I was running on a can of Full Throttle & made a mistake. I'll have to either open the ring or cut it out. I was too tired to do either at the time. So I started it again in size 80 thread. Made a mistake on the 2nd clover & just started over. I made a good start on that one.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Cold continues: I still have the cold, partially because I've only rested one day. My sore throat on Friday was probably from my sinuses draining (note, this is the first time that I've had sinus problems in 30+ years). Nonetheless, I packed Friday night & went to Steve & Anitra's early Saturday morning.

I spent some time with Carry Saturday morning, learning how to use a knitting loom. I used that thread that I bought to attempt tatting; white string with multicolor thread wrapping it, in segments. Since it didn't have a smooth enough twist to slide the knots, that experiment failed. It worked well enough on the knitting loom. I was asked multiple times if it was beaded, that should give a clue about how the multicolor thread wrapped.

When I boothsat for her at dinner & supper, I continued to work on it. We didn't use the entire loom; just a half-dozen pegs or so. It made a somewhat narrow scarf, made narrower by the fact that it curled.

By Saturday night I was so miserable. I had the full-blow cold symptoms; my back ached from shoulders to hips; clogged head & less than full faculties.

I felt better the next morning, especially after taking some alka-seltzer cold remedy. So I worked with Anitra again. Since it rained off & on all day, it was a very slow day. Nonetheless, we kept busy & I finished my scarf. It's almost 6' long; I plan to give it to mom. After Anitra paid me, I went shopping. I bought some stars for my co-workers & some origami cranes for some other folks at work; stuff like that.

Monday, I dragged around & read a couple books. Then Anitra & I found the Hold Your Own in Cameron Village & picked up a couple items. I found a folder to hold my spell templates for D&D plus a 'pocket' that clips onto the vent in my car; to hold my cellphone where I can reach & find it.

I called Chris to cancel gaming, because after all, I'm still sick. Then I called in sick on Tuesday. I went to work on Wednesday, despite still being ill because I had stuff that had to get done.

Get to work; my boss is pissed because I hadn't done the org chart the way that he wanted. I had asked Craig for help because I didn't have anything that could format the way he wanted it. Craig NEVER got back to me, not even a 'I don't have time to help you with this'. So I didn't do it. So my boss did, which pissed him off. The funny thing is; per the way he had it; it was already in OrgPlus that way.

Plus, a funding change disappeared. I know I did it, in mid to late June to early July. But there's no sign of it. The server had some hiccups about that point & I wonder if it got eaten. But my boss is pissed because in the meantime; it's been wrong since July 1. What a welcome back. Of course, this is the same boss who has said thank you about 5 times in the last 5 years. He's not real good with the positive reinforcement.

I cried a bit, because frankly, the way I felt I just didn't need that on top of it. Then I couldn't find my request for the weekend (Thursday through Monday) off. I thought that I had copied the email to my supervisor but no sign of it. I finally found it about 4 pm. Whee.

I got everything done except for getting some action confirmations & let my supervisor know what to expect Thursday, etc. I was sooo glad to get out of there; it's not even funny.

I washed clothes Wednesday night & managed to stain a number of items pink. The first load was white & delicates; including that red silk shirt with the bleach spots. I'll have to check once it dries & see if it dyed the bleached spots. The ultra-soft Japanese print tee that I bought in 'Japan' at Disney World is now pink instead of white; at least it's even.

Thursday morning I packed, my crate of books & PC notebooks plus the drink bag before Chris left so he could take them with him. After my laundry was done I packed my clothes & other stuff. Managing to forget my laundry bag, my tote bag & diddy bag. Luckily, our room & the con are in the same hotel so I won't have to haul around too much. At worst, it's around a couple corners & up a flight of stairs.

I rushed around & got to Rosemary's at 12:30. She & Chris worked til noon & I was first to arrive. We managed to leave her house about 2pm. We got to our hotel, Holiday Inn, about 12:30 am. We missed the last turn & ended up 16 miles (round trip) out of our way.

Books: a couple at S&A's; one was a 'Bad Boy' anthology & I'm not sure about the other one. I read all day Tuesday & don't remember many details; except Smoke Thief & Bad Boys Over Easy (anthology). I also read I Brake for Bad Boys & a Dick Francis novel, Knockdown I think, on the way to PA.

Tatting: I started a snowflake from Vida Sunderman's Tatted Snowflakes, the 2nd one, & finished it this morning. I also put tatted 'flags' on my D&D spell templates. Only two or three pieces lack anything & I might finish them during gaming.

Clothes: at the Village I wore my ~Colonial outfit all weekend (yay washing machines). Monday I wore jeans & some tee, I don't remember which one, plus the Salem Mass sweatshirt mom found; the black one with the cat eyes. Tuesday I schlepped around in leggings, UNC CAP tee & a chambray shirt, plus slippers.

Wednesday it was black slacks, black knit shirt (long sleeves), Celtic knot jewelry & loose hair. Thursday it was SheVa Con (2005 I think) tee, greyish blue jeans, chambray shirt & white tennis shoes. I wore the Celtic knot jewelry & kept my hair loose so it would dry.

Today it's my long-sleeved grey 'Evolution of the Bull's Head' tee, black jeans & tennies, moonstone ring, earrings & trimoon pendant; plus rope band & flower band.

The connection here at the hotel is pretty bad. So I'm going to try one more time to enter my blog. If it doesn't work; I'll wait until Monday..or later. Okay, I got this posted but I'll add the links later.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Confession time: I'm depressed. I have been for about a month. It's not a 'danger to myself' or even a 'just give up & die' sort. It's closer to a funk. I can still get to work, it's just a little harder. It's harder to do the things that I know are good for me; exercise & proper diet. It's hard even to do some of the things that I love to do; on-line roleplaying & typing notes for my home rpg's.

I even have episodes of happiness; but sooner or later, the funk comes back. There are signs that I have learned to recognize: I want to sleep more, I get more obsessive about reading, and I want more sugar & chocolate for chemical reasons & not my sweet tooth.

All I can do is keep looking for the good in things; life, friends and so on. Although maybe if I had a good cathartic cry that would help, too.

today's outfit: soft, black polo I got on sale from Sear's; black slacks I found at GCI (need to be hemmed but today I made do with double-sided tape - & I swear these fit me bettern when I bought them, today I think I need a belt); black loafers that are going into the trash when I get home (I can see the big toe on my right foot); small Celtic earrings, Celtic knot ring, rope band ring, Celtic andromorph pendant on long silver chain & ponytail.

Gaming: Mutants & Masterminds last night. Good game, my character Totem has a new move, thanks to Cybernaught. She stands between two assailants & get them to shoot each other. We rescued the Mayor & other dignitaries of the city & caught Warden.

Wanna go curl up & cry now.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Uhhhhh What a start to the day! I had an incredibly painful headache as soon as I woke up this morning. Even with the painkillers, I have a faint twinge of it left. It's not a migraine, just a really sharp headache.

I had to change the batteries in my Palm this morning. That meant that I had to synch it; change batteries & synch it again to restore the lost data. Note: that takes about 15 minutes. I got to the bus stop just as the bus was rounding the curve. Good timing!

Today's outfit: remember the faded black slacks & embroidered top combo? I'm wearing again, this time with the sequined flats & no socks (it's supposed to ~80F today). For jewelry, it's the labdourite pendant (so it doesn't fight with the shirt decorations), onyx earring, black stone ring & flower band. My hair's loose, basically because of the headache.

I'm glad that I used the last of that conditioner, it does nothing to prevent tangles. I had to spray de-tangler this morning. And the wood bristle brush I picked up at the dollar store? Ick. It has knobs on the end of the bristles; which catches my hair. Yesterday, I literally caught the brush in my hair & had to free it, like a snared rabbit.

The fair was fun, but Chris wasn't feeling very well so we left about 7 pm. That means that I didn't play a single game on the Midway (I usually play one) or test any Guesser. We did get some cider and I spent 3 hours in the Village. I think there are about half-dozen crafters that I didn't exchange a least a couple words. I also fanned them as I passed, it seemed only kind.

I thrilled Carry, I let her know that I listened to her podcast. She is good & very funny. She did a wonderful thing for me. She gave me her old watch. It's just the kind that I like; plain, silver pocket watch. It needs a new battery but that's all. whoohoo!

Unexpectedly, I ran into Liz & her parents. That was great. They also had my little namesake, aka Squirrel. It's her first fair & she loves it. She told me all about it, the bracelet, the ferris wheel & the big slide. Are all three-year olds that articulate?

I saw the pieces that beat mine in competition. I don't think much of 1st place but I'm sure that it's technically quite good. I prefer the 2nd place piece; a pair of silver & gem earrings. Looking at my entry I suddenly realized; I won third, in professional jewelry! Wow!

Chris liked the 1st place quilt aka the white horse blanket. Note: it's a white on white quilt & trapunto piece with a horsehead & 3 styles of quilt stitch; stipple, what looked like wooden boards (what do you call that?), & a third one around the horse itself. It's a fabulous piece.

The emu steak for lunch was disappointing. It was tough & tasteless. I'm willing to ascribe that to the cooking method rather than the food itself, though. Breakfast was good; a sausage & egg biscuit & a jam biscuit at the United Methodist 'restaurant'. Rosemary worked there as a kid & her mom worked there until her arthritis got too bad. The money benefits 2 United Methodist Churches, one in Cary & one in Angier.

I got my maple & my honey cotton candy & I've finished off the former. I also bought some honey sticks. There's a new loose tea shop, or new to me. They have a shop on Six Forks in Raleigh; I bought some tea & some filters (for the Rooibios) from their fair booth. I also bought some wax based (it's not a cream, it's a solid) from the honey folks.

One popular item was a fan from the Ava Gardner Museum. The county commissioner booth was handing them out. I'm glad that I took one. What a blessing it was.

books: I'm reading the 2nd Grantville Gazette.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Fair Day! And I'm already running late. I wanted to be on the way by 8:30 but sleep is important.

I finally listened to Carry's podcast. Wow, she speaks very slowly, more slowly than she does in real life. I can understand why; it aids listening.

Good news My laundry is almost done so I won't be frantically trying to get it done Friday. Things I need to do Friday: go get thread for Anitra, stop by Borders or Walden for discount, pack (duh), and I know that there is something else that I need to get. I just need to remember what.

Clothes: greyish-blue jeans (lycra so they fit closely), white tennis shoes & socks, blue & white striped tie-dye Wolf t-shirt, blue chambray UNC shirt, Celtic knot posts & ring, dragon pendant, paui shell ring & eventually my hair will be braided; once it has dried.

Tatting: I made a white snowflake yesterday. Well, almost. I need to do the last join, cut & tie. Actually it's closer to being a white wreath.

Photos! I finally broke down & got a photobucket account. Since it seems that I cannot get photos to load onto my blog; well this is a decent substitue. I've already uploaded the cross I made for Dad (after how many tries?!) and some projects from '06 Palmetto Tat Days.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

I shouldn't laugh.... but I am amused. Due to a confluence of factors, I'm the contact for most of the vending problems on campus. I take the information, report it to the responsible company & if necessary tell the caller the procedure to get a refund. A student staffer just called with a vending problem. The first question out of my mouth: 'food or drink?' Response? 'That would be helpful to know, wouldn't it. Let me call you back.

Today's outfit: a blouse that I haven't worn in awhile & this may be the last time. It's a pretty, short-sleeved, buttoned blouse; I can't remember what this shade of pinkish-purple is called but it's with black in a check. However, it's just short enough that it doesn't stay completely tucked. Anyway, I've paired it with black jeans & that pair of loafers that I still haven't thrown out. Knee-highs, ponytail, 3 women pendant, flower band, rope band & violet crystal & flower earrings finish the outfit. I put the earrings & pendant in my pocket & then forgot to put them on until after I got to work.

Books: I read all but the last two chapters of Grantville Gazette I. The last two chapters concern radios in 1632 & horses; until I get the formatting straightened out they're just too much trouble to read.

Yesterday's Post Sorry it didn't go up until today but I could not get that font size problem sorted. I tried selecting a paragraph, I tried selecting the whole thing; I could not get it normal-sized again.

Weather & stuff: It's raining today. It's rained with barely a let up all day. I'm hoping that it rains itself out before I go to the fair tomorrow (note: Definitely no post tomorrow).

My bus was 15-20 minutes late today. I honestly thought that I'd missed it & was contemplating walking to the next bus-stop (for the exercise). But it was just so messy, I wasn't in the mood. Turns out, good thing I didn't.

Monday, October 16, 2006

State Fair: or Oy, I'm Tired!
Friday night was the 'make certain my clothes are ready for next week, pack clothes for weekend, grab tatting thread, books, etc' night. I got everything done & under control (minus one or two things) and I was in bed by 10:30, planning to wrap up the last couple items the next morning. My alarm was set for 6:00 am (blech).

All well & good, except I slept for crapola. At one point, I dreamed that I was on Hillsborough St (the road in Raleigh that fronts the NC State University campus) & suddently realized that I had only half an hour to get to Steve & Anitra's. side note, that location is less than 10 minutes from the Fair Grounds. So I frantically wake up to get started, look at the clock & realize that it's only 3:45 am; roll back over & try to sleep. I finally woke up for good at 5:50 am. Even so, I was about 5 minutes late leaving. Even with all of that, I managed to get there on time (by cutting out one side-errand).

It was a brisk morning (frost on the grass, I think). However, I was wearing thigh-high boots, leggings, underskirt (okay, 1/2 an underskirt), overskirt, sweatshirt, fleece-lined wool cape, & fleece-lined knit cap. When I got to Steve & Anitra's I changed to the bodice (2-3 layers of cotton with fake underblouse), fichu & shawl instead of the sweatshirt. I remained warm.

We got started early on the day; Steve loaned me Grave Surprise, by Charlaine Harris. It's the sequel to Grave Sight. It's about a young woman who survived a lightning strike and ever since she can find dead people; not ghosts, corpses. In addition, she can tell what their COD's are.

Steve read aloud in the car from a Debbie Macomber book. It's funny & beats morning radio. As soon as we arrived Anitra started trying to catch up on her stock. She'd sold out of one or two of her earrings, the wreaths & the candy canes, I believe. Plus, she wanted to do another version of her chandelier earrings. We tatted & demonstrated and had fun. There were no truly bizarre question.

Judy, another tatter from Clayton, had been by to see her on Friday & told her that my jewelry had won third. Yippee! Anitra's unicorn did not get anything. *snarl*

I relieved Carry so she could go eat lunch. The woman next to her, Carolyn the pen & ink artist, was also alone in her booth so I said that I'd booth sit for her, too. No bribe necessary, I do it for friendship. Although I might buy one of her cards for my step-mom (in addition to the gourd/bead thing).

Other than seeing people in the break room, I did not get a chance to see anyone in the Village. :pout: We were just too busy. If I wasn't demonstrating, I was putting butterflies & other items on earring wires.

We got back in good time Saturday night & I was headed for sleep by 11:30 pm. Slept very well. I had to get up & go once in the night but overall slept until 7:30. What a relief, especially after Friday.

Another rousingly chilly start to the day. It turns out that the lovely white linen blouse that Anitra found last week is too small for both of us. [mild expletive deleted]. So I wore my undyed linen blouse with the country blue & cream tapestry vest, plus the same skirt & underskirt from Saturday.

Sunday was just as busy but I found a couple minutes to talk to Schottzi (name misspelled, I'm sorry), the hat maker, before things got started. While I was booth sitting for Carry & Carolyn, I got a chance to talk to Senora. She didn't realize that I work so close to the brick area, "The Gift," that she designed. I walk by it every day, to & from work. It makes me smile, even if it's not as striking from ground level.

There were a couple of absolutely wonderful & amusing people who came by. One was another tatter to whom I gave my snood pattern to last year. She hasn't started it yet, but that's okay, she still has the pattern. Another was a woman who understood immediately when I said that I couldn't break her $20 bill unless I froze it & had a hammer. Then there was the quite precocious young man who scolded his mother, or tried, for touching one of the snowflakes & then for taking one of Anitra's brochures. Anitra & I had a hard time keeping a straight face on that one.

At one point, lunch I believe, when I was booth sitting for Carry, I tried drop spinning again. I was, ahem, less than successful.

I got a chance to talk to Beth in the break room & finally met her husband. Oh, they are such fun people.

I made it home after the fair by 11:30 pm. Chris drove in right after me, coming home from his parents' (it's his birthday yesterday). However, I was still wound up & ended up finishing Grave Surprise before I went to sleep, at about 12:30 am.

I'm just a little tired today. I took a long lunch but not to nap. I went to a transportation forum. I found out that you can take regional bus from Chapel Hill to Boone. And, if I understand the prices right, for about $22.

Today's outfit: black tassel loafers, knee-highs, black jeans, black polo acid-washed & overdyed green then embroidered in green 'Harrington Steading', green amber jewelry set (earrings, necklace & ring), silver band & my hair up in a ponytail/bun held by two leather-wrapped hairsticks.

I won't see my assistant again until after Fall Break. She has class all day tomorror, she never comes in on Tuesdays. Then I'm at the Fair on Wednesday & she'll be gone for the Break after that.

Tatting update: One more ring on the purple necklace and the other end of the fastener has been threaded on. So I have one or two more rings to do & it's done. I've saved two of the beads; I may do matching earrings. Plus I've tatted a butterfly to try & clear a shuttle.

Books: I'm still reading We Few on my eReader. And I've already talked about Grave Surprise.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Sleep, marvelous sleep Last night I skipped CSI and went to bed early. I woke up. I woke up on time. I have energy! Sleep is a wonderful thing.

I got my flu shot yesterday. That was chore. It's a 20-minute walk to the building where they scheduled it & that building has a different label on the campus map. I find the building & enter, learning that I'm one floor down from where I need to be. So I take the stairs. At the landing the sign says 'exit only, no entrance'. So down the stairs, find a different set & up I go. Find the room & learn that they've moved! Now I follow the directions, through 2 other, connected, buildings to find the correct room. Miraculously, I was only 10 minutes late. Needless to say, that took up most of my lunch hour (50 minutes of it, I spent 5 minutes in the Ram shop checking out their iPod sale).

Tatting update: I've almost finished the purple & grey bead necklace. It needs one more ring; with jump ring & fastener. I've already put the fastener on the jump ring. I just need to thread the jump ring onto the thread and tat it into place.

I got the bookmark from Lotus (etatter). It's lovely. It's a variant of Rebecca's (tatmom03) cross with a split chain tail & a tassel.

BOOKS: I read Seducing the Spy by Celeste Bradley. It was good, I enjoyed it. The heroine was quite atypical; a ruined woman who's not bitter. I've been reading March Upcountry on my Palm but was really in the mood to read We Few. So I went ahead & bought the latter for my Palm. I'm having a problem with it, with all my ebooks, though. The formatting! I can see every html command & it's very distracting. It's the worst in We Few, though. A three word sentence is surrounded by three lines of text. I'm trying a different ereader to see if that helps.

Outfits: Yesterday's; blue 2005 NCAA Men's Basketball Champs polo, my 'new' navy blue slacks (White Stag brand), brown half boots, braided hair, moonstone earrings & cabochon pendant, paui shell ring & flower band.

Today's; braided hair, burgundy silk shirt (that I've just noticed has some bleached spots on it - collar, pocket & a couple small ones on one sleeve cap..and a spot on the same sleev's cuff), black vest striped with embroidery in burgundy, tan & black, black jeans, black socks & black tassel loafers. My jewelry are the simple onyx & silver earrings, three phases of womanhood pendant, flower band & the red stone & black stone bands.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Cool Website of the Day: Get Well Gamers, a charity that provides game systems & games for kids in long-term care. Apparently, there's some study that shows that playing video games give sick kids a feeling of normalcy & other good stuff. So these folks try to provide them. Take a look for yourself.

Stuff: Last night John & I took his mom out to Bali Hai for supper. They've changed the rating system, now it's 1-20 instead of 1-10. I got the non-spicy while John & his mom got #2. John said that his was a little closer to a 3 or 4 than a 2 but it was still good. Mine was a trifle spicy, I think it was perhaps carryover from an earlier diner. I successfully managed to eat without stuffing myself silly.

Afterwards, we went to Cold Stone Creamery for dessert. I had the Peanut Butter Cup Perfection, in the 'I like it' size. Even then, I only ate about half of it. I put the rest in the freezer when I got home. Mrs. J had chocolate & vanilla with roasted almonds while John had chocolate chocolate chip.

Tatting update:
I finally made the join with the newly loaded shuttle. I only tatted a couple rings but that's a huge hurdle that I was avoiding.

Today's outfit: black tassel loafers; black broomstick skirt with brown & tan flowers & ~floral stripes; black v-neck knit top with 3/4 length sleeves; Celtic andromorph pendant on long coiled chain (almost clashes w/ neckline); Celtic knot earrings (well, Celtic-looking, they're actually from Williamsburg, a Christmas present); Celtic knot ring; flower band & braided hair.

Books: Yesterday I finished The Gourdmother by Maggie Bruce. It's another mystery, this one set in upstate New York. Since I was sitting next to Gloria Small this past Saturday, this book seemed apropos. Other than that, I finished the 3rd volume of Shaolin Sisters & read a bit more of War God's Own by David Weber. It's one of my 'emergency' books on my Palm's ereader.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Whole lot of 'nothing' I feel much better today, despite only getting 6 hours of sleep last night. I just sat on the couch & tried to nap when I got home. I didn't do anything constructive until 5:30 when I put a small load of laundry into the machine.

Chris's D&D game was last night, plus we gave John his birthday presents (a copy of Spell Compendium & a book by John Matthews). We had to stop in the middle of the fight, it was 10:30 pm. We've taken out all the small fry, that leaves the giant, two lizardmen & the spellcasters. Luckily I think we still have most of our spells.

Today I went to the Star Heels Kick Off (Star Heels is a peer recognition program). I met a few people & talked a little. First, I went to the wrong building & met someone else, Greg from Sports Medicine, who thought the same thing. As a result, we were about 15 minutes late. C'est la vie.

today's outfit: black loafers (the ones that I really need to throw away before they literally disintegrate), black slacks (faded to charcoal grey), black knit top with black & white embroidery plus paste jewels (the black embroidery fills the top 3rd with a lozenge of white in the top center; the paste jewels are 3 above & 5 below the white lozenge with a diamond shape of the 5 within the lozenge, 1 bigger central one); black & grey bead bracelet, silver disc ring, silver dome ring, labdourite pendant (small enough that it doesn't clash with the stuff on the shirt), & the onyx & silver earrings. My hair is braided, again for lack of any better hair style.

I almost missed the bus this morning because I couldn't find my keys. I'd taken them off my bag yesterday and not put them back.

Books: I read Fruit of the Poisoned Tree by Jim & Joyce Lavene. It's the sequal to Pretty Poison. I've also read the first two volumes of Shaolin Sisters, a manga.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Blech. As in, I feel just lousy. I only came in to work to finish the monthly spreadsheets (I had 3 left on Friday). Now they are done & I've taken care of one or two other little things (returned mail, personnel updates, etc). I'm about to head home.

Unfortunately, I just missed the last bus until 1:30. So, I think I'll get some lunch & then decide if I feel well enough to come back to work or if I'll go and curl up in some corner until my bus comes.

Today's outfit: black Origins button-down shirt (has an red & yellow dragon ~yin-yang w/ a blue & light blue dragon above the breast pocket), black jeans, black socks (that are driving me nuts), black tassel loafers, dragon pendant, dragon earrings, dragon band ring, dragon ring, flower band, lapis lazuli center flower ring & my hair was plaited the elastic fell out so now it's loose.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Tatting Update: I finished my display this morning. Did I get a picture of it? Not with dead bagtteries. I'm charging them now & I hope they have enough charge to take the picture by the time I leave.

Today's clothes: black jeans, sneakers & socks; grey "Against the Giants: The Liberation of Geoff" t-shirt; silver harp pendant; Celtic knot earrings & ring, flower band ring; & rope band.

I'm off to get my entry in & to play Forgotten Realms at Rosemary's.

Update on the Update: Okay, so I stop at the usual building to turn in my entry & based on my statement, they sent me down the Hobbies & Handicrafts building (near the Holshauser building). I arrived there, and they looked at my entry & thought it should go back to the main building (Household entries), but decided to call up there to figure it out instead of sending me back & forth. It turns out, if I had one item, it would be in the Y category (under tatting), however since I made a set it has to go into the EE100 jewelry category. That took over 20 minutes.

Then we stopped by Foundation's Edge to pick up our comics, & Chris picked up his Star Wars miniatures. They're having their fall sale so I picked up the Rurouni Kenshin that I'm missing (13-19) plus a 5 manga series & a 3-manga series. I spent just a leeetle bit o'money.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Frigging Cold: okay, maybe it wasn't that cold today, but between the overcast, the drizzle & the wind it sure felt like it. I had a piece of banana bread for breakfast & when I went to lunch at 12:30 I got dizzy and had to sit down. I spent the morning shivering & trying to tat. Numb fingers make tatting more difficult, fyi. But, nonetheless, fun was had.

The lady next to us, Gloria Small, makes gourds. By that, I mean that she plants them, grows them, then hollows & decorates them. Some she weaves pine needles, other have thread coils & some she uses beads or wood burning. She takes small one & decorates with beads to hold scent oils for air aroma. Very pretty. I bought one for Dad, one for Kathy & one for me. Luckily, they don't read this, so I don't have to worry about spoiling the suprise.

Oak View Historic Park is great. The garden was in full bloom and smelled terrific; rosemary, geraniums, etc.

A couple brought a couple Belgians. Those horses are huge! My head hit them about the shoulder; so call it approximately 5 feet.

I finished Linda's necklace & started a choker for myself. I found Hailey's earrings & clipped the threads. The choker for myself is light purple with grey, Czech beads, split chain 5bead5/5. Very simple, but I think it will turn out well.

Today's outfit: blue/lilac polo with "Arlene" & a shuttle (gift from Steve & Anitra), jeans (that are just a little large), socks (duh), my new Reeboks (bought a year ago on sale but never before worn), moonstone cabochon pendant, earrings & ring, flat rope band, flower band & flower ring set with a lapis lazuli & I did have my hair up in my tatted bun cover. Plus I wore a chambray shirt & over that my old man's jacket decorated with calico roses.

Shopping: After the Heritage Day, Anitra & I stopped by Goodwill. I found 2 pairs of black slacks (one desparately needs hemming), one pair navy blue, blue knit top with beads & embroidery & a very thin gauze cotton blouse (that requires an undershirt or a vest). Yay! I can finally get rid of my crappy navy slacks.

I have a 50% coupon on 1 item to Joanne's so I went to get the fabric for my entry display. They had black velvet $19.99 a yard, um, no. No black panne velvet & no velour. But they did have some black ~suede. They piece I found has cut edge along one edge. So, I'll take the rest of the fabric (I went ahead & bought 2 yards) for a skirt. It turns out that everything I bought was on sale. So I still have the coupon.

Now I need to prep my entry for display & I think it goes into category EE54 or 55. I'm just not sure which.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Apex Chemical Fire
Okay, so my only connection (that I know of) to Apex is that it's where one of my family reunions is held. Still, it's not that far from the family farm. Luckily, only 18 people (at last report) have suffered ill effects, unless you include being evacuated.

Platelet donation: went smoothly yesterday. Since I've had time crunch issues in the past, they went ahead & did the faster version, that you apparently cannot do if you've given whole blood within the past 8 weeks. Sure enough, with the yogurt two hours before donation, I didn't even need the Tums. Yay! The movie, Dreamer, had started when I sat down but I didn't feel like watching it. Instead, I meditated, watched it without the earphones, a little. I was proud of myself. I recognized Oded Fehr, even if I couldn't remember his name.

Mutants & Masterminds: The game got started a little late. Between my late arrival and Diana's late, her new job lasts until 8 pm & the game starts at 7 pm. It was her first day on the job & maybe it won't always be until 8 pm. Maybe.

Anyway, we did a little clean up from the last session; raided the villain's secret identity apartment with the police. Of course, it was really a cover & not her home or hide out so only some stolen artwork was found. Although the magic formula letting Green Ronin find Totem's valley & getting her past the valley defenses was a good find. Those went into the Freedom League vaults.

Then we started the next story. It appears that the former warden of the Blackstone prison (supervillains only) has gone a little nuts & has taken Freedom City's mayor, deputy mayor & the senior Federal Judges hostage. Now it appears that maybe it's him & maybe it's not. We had to stop in the middle of the fight; that whole 'have to work the next day' thing.

Today's outfit: I decided to dress up a little; basically because I don't really like the last pair of clean slacks. Anyway, I'm wearing the bead & sequin black flats; navy knee-hi's (which just look dark); black, ribbed, short-sleeved sweater; ankle/floor-length crepe skirt, more-or-less vertically striped, printed to look sort of like zig-zag strips of different fabrics in brown, olive, tan, black, tan, dark teal & burgundy; silver cobra-link bracelet; female figure ring; silver band of flowers ring; silver fairy & flower pendant on silver chain; silver 3-hoop earrings; & my hair is in a bun/ponytail held by a carved, almost purple, wooden hairstick.

Tatting: I managed to fix my error from the other day. It only required completely unwinding one shuttle & one thread winder...twice. Once to unthread the misplaced ring, then again to re-thread it once the missed tatting was completed. Whee!

Mild Rant: Stupid pedometer! It's reset itself. I just don't believe that it only took 85 steps to get from home to the work. Now it's at 60 steps. Grrrr!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Semi wreck
Thanks to the oddities of the bus schedule, I had to drive to work this morning. I'm donating platelets this afternoon at 3pm & the closest the bus comes to delivering me on time is to deliver me at 1:30 pm. And for that, I'd have to leave work at noon. That's just a little much.

I was running a scoche late anyway (stopped to sync my Palm after changing the batteries - I miss my re-chargeable one) but not absurdly so. Then traffic pretty much stopped for 2-3 miles. I thought it was because traffic is just that bad at that time of day. But it turned out to be an overturned tanker semi. The local news still don't have it on their webpage so I don't know if the driver's okay or not. It looked pretty bad but by the time I passed by, there was no ambulance & the doors were off the cab.

I ended up being about 15 minutes late to work. I missed one bus at the park & ride; it left just as I reached it. Another one was coming up just then so I boarded almost immediately. Since I'm not really getting a lunch hour today, maybe a lunch 15 minutes, it's not a real time issue.

Today's outfit: black jeans again, lilac Carolina Renaissance Festival polo, black loafers (tasseled), nude knee-hi's (I'll be glad when the weather settles down to one season), amethyst & silver pendant, same flat rope band, female figure ring & 'stained glass' earrings with a mauve center & blue points. My hair's loose until I get it brushed again.

Tatting: [note: expletives deleted] earrings that I made this weekend have disappeared. They aren't in the bag with the necklace or the bracelet. I finished putting the fastener on the bracelet & fray-checked everything. But it looks like I'm remaking the earrings. They're aren't hard & I think that I still have some beads but it's [expletive deleted] annoying.

Donating Platelets: It takes longer than donating blood but they get twice as much of the good stuff. I am type O+ so I give as often as I can. Things I have learned: 1) drink plenty of fluid beforehand (this means the blood flows well & you donate quicker); 2) eat something (the red blood cells are carrying nutrients & this increases the size of the blood veins, making finding & sticking them easier) & 3) get some calcium into your system. They give you Tums but I hate that taste. The calcium prevents nausea (they use something to help the blood flow that causes that reaction, it's temporary but I get it worse than many people). If I get some yogurt or other high calcium source before I give, I feel a lot better.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Ugh, I stayed up late last night to read Thud by Terry Pratchett. I've read it before. I knew who did it. But I was enjoying it so much and I'd had an otherwise crappy evening.

I caught the next to last bus home so at least I wasn't walking home in the dark but I still like to get home a little earlier than I did. I'd ended up staying at work just long enough to miss the first possible bus and somehow missed the 2nd bus, too. I was packing up to leave when my phone rang. I could have ignored it but something told me to answer it, despite the fact that I'd already turned off my computer. Frankly, if it had been a call to someone else in the office I would have transferred the call & just counted myself as being off work at 5pm. But I had to sit down because it was a call for me to handle (which I did this morning). However, if I'd let the guy go to voice mail I'd be so frustrated this morning. He has a good command of the English language but a thick accent and talking to him, being able to ask him to repeat key portions was massively helpful.

When I got home I found some unexpected fall-out to my roommate's loss of checkbook. He hadn't paid the power bill. So they'd cut the power. Luckily, there was still some light & I have a flashlight on my keys. Plus, Mom gave me a really fabulous flashlight for Christmas (wind up & LED). So I called my roommate, got his credit card number & called the power company to get it switched back on. Did you know that they do not post their phone numer on the disconnect notice? It's very annoying. Once the bill was paid & the connect fee the voice said 'your power will be connected by midnight.' Oh frabjous joy. That blows my evening.

So I went to get some supper & by the time I got back it was dark. I pulled out a couple candles & the flashlights to read & eat supper. They actually got the power back at about 8pm, just before my Mom called. Luckily we have an old-fashioned phone with a cord because the cordless was out of juice. We made plans to meet, in November probably. My month of October is tied up already.

Today's outfit: braided hair (I didn't feel like doing anything else with it), green amber post earrings (lost the back to one this morning), matching green amber necklace (5 cabochons), matching ring, same flat silver rope band, black & green Harrington Steading polo (acid washed black overdyed green), black jeans, 'nude' kneehighs (another cold start & hot finish day), black flats with sequins & beads.

Tatting News: all things considered I got very little done on Linda's necklace yesterday, just a couple rings before work. Nor did I finish the bracelet or get started on blocking. Guess what I hope to accomplish tonight?

Books: Re-read Stephanie Laurens's The Truth About Love yesterday then, of course, read Thud, as I said. Now I'm reading The Hero Strikes Back, by Moira J. Moore. It's a sequel to Resenting the Hero. The cover art is very different between the two books. Resenting looks more Renaissance while Hero looks later, maybe as late as 18th century.

Speaking of books; some authors have gotten together & started a charity help other authors with emergency assistance. They've started auctions on eBay to seed the charity. That way if an author gets hit with a disaster, or long-term illness, there's a fund to help see them through it. This is intended to be a longer term assistance than the usual short-term (like the assistance web comic artists are compiling for Lea Hernandez). Not to dismiss the value of such assistance by no means, but having funds in place for long-term problems is also a good thing.

Addendum to today's outfit: I'm also wearing an owl pin in my collar. I picked it up, & two others, on Saturday at a discount store. It's an enamel pin & pretty good quality.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Vent Ahead: I have very brittle nails, a trait that I inherited from my mother. I keep them short (no longer than the tips of my fingers) to prevent breakage & splits. Last week I broke both thumbnails, partially or almost to the quick. They have just now begun to recover.

This morning, I jammed my index nail again a cabinet door & it completely tore. The only nail left is that covering the nail bed. It doesn't hurt (other than the unaccustomed pressure of fingertip no longer protected by fingernail) but it's just so annoying.

I just needed to vent about this minor annoyance. Losing the thumbnails was worse, it made it more difficult to tat (shoving knots into place & neatening them as I went).

Today's outfit: soft, black knit polo; faded black cotton slacks; black tassle loafers; nude knee hi's (too cold for sockless this morning, too warm for socks this afternoon); black stone ring; flat silver rope band, small labdourite pendant on silver chain; braided hair w/ a black elastic; & 'silver' & black bead earrings round black bead on double loop wire that connects from earwire to 2 duplicate double loop wires [with sead bead, faceted bead & seed bead] that each hold one end of a 'silver' bas relief crescent, set with a centered fasceted bead, that dangles 5 faceted beads).

My bangs are still very short from last weekend's chop. I swear I cut them even with the tops of my glasses. The lighter weight allows them to spring up & only reach halfway to my eyebrows, if that.

Tatting: I finished my fair entry, almost. I need to add the other end of the toggle fastener to the bracelet, cut loose ends & block all the pieces. I also need to buy display supplies (black velvet & foamboard) & see in which category tatted jewelry belongs.

This weekend, I bought a little more thread & a lot more beads. I have some great ideas for jewelry. I've started a pale & paler purple necklace for Linda's Christmas present. She adores purple & I made her purple snowflake earrings last year.