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Saturday, August 28, 2010

What I did on my summer vacation (photo heavy)

Sea Lion at the Mystic Aquarium
Me & Alex in front of the "King & Heir" statue
Beluga Whale
watching the whales
Cheese!
or not...
Sting Rays
Sharks
pinguins
Rescued sea lions from California

Posing after the show

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

First day of the term; bored to death

So, it's the first day of the term and my humanities class is a real bore so far.  This book reads like a travel agent brochure on various forms on art, and how they will greatly enrich my life.  Not that I'm not into different art forms, but the way the text is written is bugging the crap out of me.  I sure hope that things improve after this introduction chapter, otherwise it's going to be a long 10 weeks.

I completed the second wedge of the Lace Edge Swirl Shawl (newly added to the Ravelry pattern database, thank you very much), and my numbers were off.  I was able to fudge it a bit on the pick-up row for the third wedge, but it bugged me so much that I had dreams about trying to get the numbers to work out all night long.  That and trying to knit a pair of lime green gloves (or maybe they were blue...) for some man I don't know.  Alex woke up last night the second I tried to turn the fan off, and then got up out of bed and ran around the room for a minute, at about 1:30am, so I didn't sleep well at all.  I spend the entire night in a state semi-consciousness to keep an ear open for him.  That being said, I was pretty tired when I got up today.  Work was slower today than yesterday, and I spend 7 hours putting bar-code labels on 410 skeins of Cascade 220.  Seriously.  I'm not exaggerating.  It was crazy.  I had to label them all, then put four aside for the shelves, and bag the rest for storage in the back room.  Both of my hands tingle and hurt a little bit now from all the label peeling, and bag stuffing, and heavy lifting.  On the good side, I'm scoring some gorgeous Cascade Heritage in a ruby red color for whole sale because we never ordered the bag in the first place, and I need that color to replace my Baudelaire socks.  It's a crying shame what happened to those socks.  First the heels blew out, and then carpet beetle larvae got to them and ate huge holes in the sole of one, and with all the repairs they just aren't wearable in shoes anymore but I can't toss them until I knit a replacement pair in the same color.  They were my absolute favorite socks of all time.  So I'll be knitting a new pair soon.

Speaking of knitting, I also got the Sheep 3 sample from the shop and I picked up two extra skeins of the same yarn to lengthen the sleeves with, and a button to put on it.  I'll be closing the hole up a bit as it's too large for the button, but it looked so good on the coat.  I've loved this thing for years and it's awesome to be able to bring it home.  The body fits great but I have these giant arms so I need to add a few inches.  I might even knit them extra long so that I can turn up the sleeve and cover the spot where I picked up my stitches.  That sounds good.  I think I'm doing it.

Lastly, today is Aaron's birthday.  He's 36.  Don't tell him I told you, lol.  I'm off to finally cut into his cake :)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Strange things

Learning by osmosis
This was a really strange Sunday.  It poured rain most of the day (naturally...because my hair is straight).  Alex had a really tough start to the day, and I had to take him out of sacrament meeting but he was just fine in class and sharing time.  Usually it's the other way around.  We had a baptism for one of my kids in primary so we stayed just long enough for him to actually be baptized, and then had to run to get Alex some lunch.  I finally took WD-40 to church with me and sprayed everything that is metal and moves.  The high-pitched squeak was just too much to take anymore and I did something about it.  Heather returned today and did sharing time, and brought some really great trinkets home from Utah for the kids for their birthdays.  And before I could leave, the Bishop caught me on the way out and let me know that they are releasing the primary presidency.

I don't really know how I feel about being released.  I sort of feel like I'm floating out there in the breeze with no purpose, as I've been the 1st counselor for two years.  I had a feeling that my time was almost up because Kristen paid me that really nice compliment that I seemed to have found my 'sea-legs' so to speak in the primary.  That's usually when they pull you.  Heavenly Father seems to put us (or at least me) in a job that I feel totally unqualified for and know nothing about, and then once I finally understand what I'm doing and how to do it, He figures that I've learned what ever I was there to learn and it's time for me to do something else.  It's happened every time, and I guess this wasn't any different.  So when I was released, I wasn't too surprised.  Now I'm about 3 hours removed from that moment and I'm just not sure how I feel about it. 

For a long time, I've gone down stairs and worked with the kids.  Some days were better than others.  As I've been in school, I've been putting to use the things that I've learned, and I've watched the improvement in many of their attitudes.  I've watched as some have moved away, been baptized, gone up to Young Men's and passed sacrament, fallen inactive, and as some have come from the nursery to join us in primary.  I've consolled some.  I've had chats with a few parents.  I held one in my arms in the hallway as they had a tantrum all afternoon.  I've leaned heavily on others who could always be counted on to participate in a pinch.  I've given lessons that caused their eyes to glaze over with boredom, and I've given lessons where even the most jaded of the oldest children got involved.  I've bribed them with food, and given them The Look (you know the look...that one that tells them that their time on this Earth is short if they don't pull it together).  I've seen one of my own children leave primary and another one join.  It feels like they need me, and like it will fall apart if I leave and yet I know that they have already called a new President who will call new counselors, and these ladies are exactly what this group of kids needs right now.  My time is past and I'm on to the next thing, or maybe not. 

Maybe it's time for me to just attend classes and meetings for a little while.  I've been teaching someone something for the last 3 years straight.  It'll be nice not to be nagged by the thought that I have to prepare a sharing time lesson in a few days, all while being in the middle of school work and trying to get that done.  It'll be nice not to have to worry about finding a substitute for a class because one of the teachers will be out, and then ultimately just teaching the class myself because no subs could be found.  I won't feel guilty anymore about all of the things our little primary aren't doing because we don't have the bodies to fill every position we have available.  There are some definite pluses, but its still a little bitter-sweet. 

Bitter-sweet.  That reminds me that I was supposed to bake cookies yesterday.  Instead I spent the entire afternoon mending my knitting.  I've had a basket sitting in the corner for months now with my Ivy league Vest and multiple pairs of socks which all needed my attention.  Yesterday I fixed the split seam on my vest, and then sewed down the steeks so that I won't have any other issues.  I also darned about 5 pairs of socks.  I wear out my heels, and every pair of socks I own was in need of some form of heel reinforcement, or flat out replacement.  If I was smarter, I'd knit afterthought heels all the time so I could just pull them out and knit them again.  Some of these socks are going to need to be tossed just as soon as I can get another pair knit to replace them.  It's not like I don't have enough yarn to do it.  I just don't have a lot of time.  I should just knit a pair a month like the Yarn Harlot does, and that could help quite a bit.  It might even save on the wear if I had enough to alternate them more often that I currently do.  And I have at least three partial pairs in some state of completion right now so I'm off to a head start.  One pair has been on the needles for two years now, so I should really just suck it up and finish them already. 

Well, my butter is officially at room temp and my boys need to eat, so I'm off to the kitchen.