Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Fog and sun and thoughts

It's October 28th and yet it doesn't really feel a lot like fall today. It's rather warm again. Not unpleasantly warm, for the most part, but warmer than it should be. It was wonderfully foggy this morning when I got up, because it rained all last night. It was foggy and there were a couple of large crows marching down the street. Very Edgar Allen Poe. Of course as soon as I went to get my camera and try to get a picture a car came by and scared them off. Ah...nevermore.

I just got back from taking a walk up to the playground and swinging for a while. Quite a pleasant activity in the sun, although I was quite warm by the time I got home.

Last night was a costume contra dance...since in Winston it's the dance closest to halloween because there's no dance on Saturday. It was fun, most of the people dressed up, although some didn't bother. I dressed as a gypsy, which I will also do when I take Colin trick-or-treating. Yes...we do that. I also wore my cape instead of a coat (and it was very good for keeping the rain off!) but I didn't get a picture in that.


And Laura...she was a pirate...although she looks rather like a gypsy also:

Two thoughts occured to me about contra yesterday and today. One (and Laura and I were discussing this), she has an almost completely different group of guys who ask her to dance than I do. There is some overlap, but for the most part she'll mention a partner and I'll finally figure out that I have seen them, but never danced with them and therefore may or may not know their name and same for her if I say who I danced with. We couldn't figure out why this is, but it's odd...

And secondly, I'm really good at reading body language and telling how a person is feeling, which is sometimes good and sometimes bad...and very interesting at contra because during a swing I can tell pretty fast what sort of mood the other person is in. I say it's interesting at contra, because usually people are in a good mood...but occasionally I can tell they aren't really. I guess in general it's good to be able to tell how people are feeling so I don't bumble into their mood saying something grating, but it's also sometimes alarming. What do you think? Can you tell how people are feeling? of the dances last night was called "The Dead Cat Bounce" at which I made a strange face and the guy across from me just burst out laughing. "Oh my...the look on your face...that was priceless!" Well...really, with a name like that...

Balance and swing your neighbor
Men allemande left halfway,
Partner allemande right 1x
Men start hey for 4
(Men go halfway, but women ricochet back to the side where they start by meeting in the center and pushing back with both hand.)
Circle left
Partner swing on the side
Ladies chain, star left, pass through to new neighbors.

"So what, are we the dead cats bouncing off of each other?" said one lady. :D I have no idea...

I started knitting a glove last week...I think it was last week. Yeah. Well, I got the cuff and the hand part done and moved on to the fingers...and found that there was no way I could fit my fingers in, as tight as they were going to be. So I had to take out a whole finger and am going to try knitting it on bigger needles. By the way, if you have long fingers and want someone to knit you gloves, you'd better pick someone who loves you a lot, because it's extremely tedious to knit glove fingers. :D This is the first time I've regretted having long fingers. So, I have to knit that finger all over again, and hopefully it will work this time.

And now I should go peel some potatoes to make mashed potatoes for on top of the shepherd's pie I'm making for supper.

Monday, October 26, 2009


Mom did a meme, and I thought I'd do it also. Google your name with "unfortunately" before it and see what you find. Most of the ones I found involved Natalies being sick or getting injured. Wow. That's not a good sign. But I found a few:

  • Unfortunately, Natalie had no other clothes with her.
  • Unfortunately, Natalie was involved in a huge wreck off the start.
  • Unfortunately, Natalie defied John's orders to throw the game for Flynn and as a result she was kidnapped by Flynn.
  • Unfortunately, Natalie's response continues to be an annoyingly familiar "No".
  • Unfortunately, Natalie and Jordan are still restless, so they continue decorating dishes.
  • Unfortunately, Natalie instigated one ADHD incident of the serious type.
  • Unfortunately, Natalie is no longer in the herd. But she sure was a fun heifer for the shows!
  • Unfortunately, Natalie didn't see the public service announcement.
  • Unfortunately, Natalie wants a love match, and Lord Malcolm doesn't believe in love.
  • Unfortunately, Natalie couldn't get them in her suitcase, so I inherited them.
  • Unfortunately Natalie had seriously underestimated the sheer animal cunning of her giant squid stalker which cunningly disguised its smallest tentacle as a bicycle tyre.
So there you have it. :) It's Monday. :P

Sunday, October 18, 2009

War and Peace, bits and pieces, and a few thoughts

I've almost finished reading War and Peace. All I've got left is 30-some pages of the second epilogue. Yes, there are two epilogues. I've finished all of the story and all that's left is what one Twitter follower warned me was "sermonizing". Yeah, pretty much. Analytical sermonizing. But I'm basically finished with the book. I liked it a lot. It's took me a little while to get used to keeping track of the characters, because they all have maybe three different names they are called, so for instance "Prince Andrew" might be called by his Russian last name on the next page, and the next by his familiar name, or something like that.

And I had quite a hard time getting both volumes from the library because they have the same number and they only sent me one. So I just requested it (again) on Mom's card, and I got the second volume. :) I could start on about the incompetency of the public libraries lately, but I'll refrain.

War and peace....well, some of the war parts were a little tedious, but not too bad. And the peace part was interesting, and the whole book is very well-written. It's one of those books that clearly shows you how the characters are feeling, plus Tolstoy throws in lots of good points, and ironic, amusing sentences that made me burst out laughing. I was dog-earring the pages all the while, and probably on average dog-earred it every eighth inch or so. Poor Volume 2 got it the hardest. It had been dog-earred before though, or I might have thought twice about bending the pages. As it was, I folded them gently. :)

So, here are some of the passages that I really liked or made me laugh. And maybe it's just me, or maybe some of them won't be funny out of context, so bear with me. :) I cut some names to try to avoid spoiling the story for people who haven't read it, but I'm not sure if it helped any.

"Touched that this statuesque princess could so change, Pierre took her hand and begged her forgiveness, without knowing what for. From that day the eldest princess quite changed towards Pierre and began knitting a striped scarf for him." --The knitting got me... :D

"I am very sorry you did not find me in yesterday. I was fussing about with Germans all day. We went with Weyrother to survey the dispositions. When Germans start being accurate, there's no end to it!" --True, true.

"Better quarters could have been found him, but Marshal Davout was one of those men who purposely put themselves in most depressing conditions to have a justification for being gloomy." --I think I've met people like that.

"Pfuel was one of those hopelessly and immutably self-confident men, self-confident to the point of martyrdom as only Germans are, because only Germans are self-confident on the basis of an abstract notion -science, that is, the supposed knowledge of absolute truth."

"M. de Beausset, the man so fond of travel, having fasted since morning, came up to the Emperor and ventured respectfully to suggest lunch to his Majesty.
'I hope I may now congratulate your Majesty on a victory?' said he.
Napoleon silently shook his head in negation. Assuming the negation to refer only to the victory and not to the lunch, M. de Beausset ventured with respectful jocularity to remark that there is no reason for not having lunch when one can get it."

"When loving with human love one may pass from love to hatred, but divine love cannot change. No, neither death nor anything else can destroy it." --Indeed.

"...the infantry of the belated columns...had started in due order and, as always happens, had got somewhere, but not to their appointed places."

"...the peasants Karp and Vlas...after the French had evacuated Moscow drove in their carts to pillage the town, and in general personally failed to manifest any heroic feelings..."

" 'Greatness', it seems, excludes the standards of right and wrong. For the 'great' man nothing is wrong, there is no atrocity for which a 'great' man can be blamed.

For us with the standard of good and evil given to us by Christ, no human actions are incommensurable. And there is no greatness where simplicity, goodness, and truth are absent." --Very good point!

"Not merely in these cases but continually did that old man -who by experience of life had reached the conviction that thoughts and the words serving as their expression are not what move people-use quite meaningless words that happened to enter his head."

"He had what the doctors termed 'bilious fever'. But despite the fact that the doctors treated him, bled him, and gave him medicines to drink -he recovered."

"That dreadful question, What for? which had formerly destroyed all his mental edifices, no longer existed for him. To that question, What for? a simple answer was now always ready in his soul: 'Because there is a God, that God without whose will not one hair falls from a man's head."

" 'What can one say or think of as a consolation?' said Pierre. 'Nothing! Why had such a splendid boy, so full of life, to die?'
'Yes, in these days it would be hard to live without faith...' remarked Princess Mary.
'Yes, yes, that is really true,' Pierre hastily interrupted her.
'Why is it true?' Natasha asked, looking attentively into Pierre's eyes.
'How can you ask why?' said Princess Mary. 'The thought alone of what awaits...'
Natasha without waiting for Princess Mary to finish, again looked inquiringly at Pierre.
'And because,' Pierre continued, 'only one who believes that there is a God ruling us can bear a loss such as hers and...yours.' "

"Now that he was telling it all to [her] he experienced the pleasure which a man has when women listen to him -not clever women who when listening either try to remember what they hear to enrich their minds and when opportunity offers to re-tell it, or who wish to adapt it to some thought of their own and promptly contribute their own clever comments prepared in their own little mental workshop- but the pleasure given by real women gifted with a capacity to select and absorb the very best a man shows of himself."

" 'But why, count, why?' she almost cried, unconsciously moving closer to him. 'Why? Tell me. You must tell me!'
He was silent.
'I don't understand your why, count,' she continued, 'but it's hard for me...I confess it. For some reason you wish to deprive me of our former friendship. And that hurts me.' There were tears in her eyes and in her voice. 'I have had so little happiness in life that every loss is hard for me to bear.... Excuse me, good-bye!' and suddenly she began to cry and was hurrying from the room.
'Princess, for God's sake!' he exclaimed, trying to stop her. 'Princess!'
She turned round. For a few seconds they gazed silently into one another's eyes -and what had seemed impossible and remote suddenly became possible, inevitable and very near." --Oww, very painful. And yet it ends well.

"All who had known Natasha before her marriage wondered at the change in her as at something extraordinary. Only the old countess with her maternal instinct had realized that Natasha's outbursts had been due to her need of children and a husband... " --Heehee.

"There were then as now conversations and discussions about women's rights, the relation of husband and wife and their freedoms and rights...but these topics were not merely uninteresting to Natasha, she positively did not understand them. These questions, then as now, existed only for those who see nothing in marriage but the pleasure married people get from one another, that is, only the beginnings of marriage and not its whole significance, which lies in the family." --Ahhh...I love it. :)

Pierre went to the children, and the shouting and laughter grew still louder. 'Come, Anna Makarovna,' Pierre's voice was heard saying, 'come here into the middle of the room and at the word of command, 'One, two,' and when I say 'three'... You stand here, and you in my arms- well now! One, two!...' said Pierre, and a silence followed: 'three!' and a rapturously breathless cry of children's voices filled the room. 'Two, two!' they shouted. 'This' meant two stockings, which by a secret process known only to herself Anna Makarovna used to knit at the same time on the same needles, and which, when they were ready, she always triumphantly drew, one out of the other, in the children's presence." --Yes, that is some knitting technique, no I don't know how to do it.

"...left alone, [they] also began to talk as only a husband and wife can talk, that is, with extraordinary clearness and rapidity, understanding and expressing each other's thoughts in ways contrary to all rules of logic, without premises, deductions, or conclusions, and in a quite peculiar way. Natasha was so used to this kind of talk with her husband that for her it was the surest sign of something being wrong between them if [he] followed a line of logical reasoning. When he began proving anything, or talking argumentatively and calmly and she, led on by his example, began to do the same, she knew that they were on the verge of a quarrel." --Ah, I started out the book being annoyed by Natasha and her flightiness, but I think I relate to her a lot better than to Princess Mary, the other main female in the book. Mary cries and mopes a bit too much most of the time, although she improved by the end too. Natasha, like me, wouldn't be likely to cry in front of people who hurt her, but to get angry instead, and then perhaps cry on her own when no one's around. All the same, she's a fictional character and I didn't empathize with her all the time, but I changed my opinion of her by the end of the book. And I SO argue like that. :D

"If history had retained the conception of the ancients it would have said that God, to reward or punish his people, gave Napoleon power and directed his will to the fulfillment of the divine ends, and that reply, would have been clear and complete. One might believe or disbelieve in the divine significance of Napoleon, but for anyone believing in it there would have been nothing unintelligible in the history of that period, nor would there have been any contradictions.
But modern history cannot give that reply. Science does not admit the conception of the ancients as to the direct participation of the Deity in human affairs, and therefore history ought to give other answers. Modern history replying to these questions says: you want to know what this movement means, what caused it, and what force produced these events? Then listen:" ---At this point Tolstoy launches into a fast-paced recapping of how history should retell the story, writing it all rather as an elementary school student, with lots of 'thens' and 'suddenly's & 'and's. :D

So, there you have it. Or, the condensed version from Book-A-Minute:

"History controls everything we do, so there is no point in observing individual actions. Let's examine the individual actions of over 500 characters at great length."

Ah, well...yes. But it was worth it. :D I found the constant harping on predestination rather fascinating.

And now I've got a good 6-10 years before I need to read it again. Thick books like that don't get re-read as often as some others. :)

Now that I've typed this all up and fought with the italics, I should maybe go to bed. The HTML code was giving me fits...I had to paste it into a document, remove all the code, and re-paste it into a blog post, adding italics properly. Sheesh. At least that worked. :/

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Can life BE more conflicting?

It's amazing how being happy about something can lead immediately to being discontent about something else. Inevitable, I suppose, but one of those things that makes you sigh.

I went to church with some friends last Sunday and it was fun. The sermon was alright, although very short, partially because the guy speaking apparently lost his place in his notes at some point. The music was good (I do miss being able to sing very loudly). I love to sing loudly and at our church there are only about two people who sing loudly, both of them much better than I do, so I lower my volume. So that was good, and I enjoyed being with my friends. Apart from that though, I missed our church.

I wish our church had more people, but I don't like huge churches where you don't even know everyone. My friends were looking through the new church directory and saying things like "Oh, those people are married?" and such.

I don't like youth groups, college groups, age-segregated Bible studies, and things like that. I think having everyone divided up and only around their peers is not following the Titus 2 commandments that the older men and women encourage and teach the younger. Talking to your peers can be encouraging of course, but if that's mostly all you get you're only going to be bouncing ideas and opinions off of each other with no other wiser perspective to think about.

I read this article on Boundless this week, and I completely agree with it. Quarantining a Generation

On the other hand, it made me wish I had my own apartment so I could have groups of my friends (of all ages) over. Have people over for game nights, or open houses, or whatever. Our house is rather small though, and I wouldn't want to impose on my parents with my extroversion.

Speaking of which, my mom said I'm a "single extrovert". She has a very good point. Technically, I'm introverted. I don't usually talk a lot, I'm not a high-energy person, after hanging out with people and talking for a long time I usually need quiet and time to recharge without anyone bothering me, etc. On the other hand, if I feel blah, it helps for me to talk to my friends. I enjoy being with people until I'm tired, it makes me happy. "But," said Mom, "if you had a husband you would..." "I'd just talk to him of course," I interrupted. And she's got a point. If I was married I'd have my best friend to talk to at almost any time and that would probably be enough most of the time. So...I am a single extrovert.

But anyway, as I was saying, I started wishing I had my own apartment. With one or two roommates of course, though I don't think I know anyone needing an apartment who would make a good roommate for me. Plus, I don't make enough to afford 1/2 or 1/3 of the rent of an apartment. Or rather, I do, but that's just about all. I don't make enough to afford the car that I would have to have, my share of the utilities, groceries, etc. I already buy my own clothes and toiletries, but groceries aren't cheap, and neither is a car and all the stuff that goes with it. So I would have to get a different or a second job and would be working a lot.

I didn't even know how much rent is for an apartment, so I was looking online to see what there is around here. Lots of apartments, that's what. :D I'd prefer something within fifteen minutes from work, so I ended up looking at the apartment complex my friend Jess lived in before she moved, and the place we lived in before we moved to our house, because those are the only two apartment complexes in Winston that I've actually been inside and know what they're like.

Jess' place was pretty nice (apart from some gosh-awful wallpaper border in the apartment) and fairly expensive too, I find. Granted, in that case you're also paying for a gated apartment complex that apparently is hardly ever actually gated because the gate breaks. Woo-hoo. So, fairly nice, expensive, not really as safe as it's supposed to be.

Then the place we used to live in is okay and cheaper. It's definitely older, and there was some reason my parents got fed up with the management, but it's a decent price, and pretty good apartments, safe neighborhood and all. Though you're likely to get sap on your car from all the pine trees...unless they've all fallen down since when we were there. :D

But as I thought, I couldn't afford to live in either of those places, without all the extra work that I mentioned. Oh well, I have an idea of what apartments cost now at any rate.

My point however, which I think I've lost track of, is that I was feeling happy about our church, and I'm looking forward to going there this week, but in wanting to get together with the people in my church I started feeling discontented about where I live. We just never can be content, can we? :(

Friday, October 16, 2009

Let me add another layer to my geeky-ness

I hadn't ever watched a whole episode of Star Trek before...I kind of knew the basic idea of the show and had seen bits and pieces of it before.

But anyway, Mom was listening to some knitting podcast that mentioned tribbles, and she was telling Dad about it, at which point I was wondering what tribbles were. Star Trek critters. Fluffballs. Sci-fi animate fluffballs, with no discernible features. They purr, reproduce like rabbits, and eat a lot. Okay then. So, I found the tribbles episode of Star Trek on YouTube, and watched it.

The Trouble With Tribbles

And while I was watching it, I was thinking that Spock is really a Jeeves to Captain Kirk. Logical, full of information, and slightly above the foolishness of all the other people. :D So yesterday when I was looking for Jeeves & Wooster clips I found this, and thought "Ha! So I'm not the only one who thought that!"

I'm hardly about to become a "trekkie" but I enjoyed watching some Star Trek. :)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Wodehouse day

So it's Wodehouse Day...P.G. Wodehouse's birthday. However I have no idea what to do to "celebrate". I could go around talking in a British accent all day, but I really don't feel like doing that. I could watch episodes of "Jeeves and Wooster" (that sounds better, it would be cheery anyway). Or I could start re-reading "The Adventures of Sally", which is a very funny, cute book. Maybe I'll do that. It's rainy and cold here today...which while gloomy, is probably accurate, seeing as it supposedly rains all the time over in England.

In the meantime, here are some clips to enjoy.

These ones don't allow embedding, so here are the links:

Minnie the Moocher

Jeeves Disapproves

And the Jeeves and Wooster theme:

Ah, nothing like Hugh Laurie and Steven Fry for some good British comedy.

Monday, October 12, 2009

It looks like fall

I like my little black MacBook very much, it's quite convenient, has had few problems, and I'm very happy I bought it. It does have to be dusted fairly often because the dust shows up clearly on the black and looks terrible. But I just cleaned it this weekend with a microfiber cloth and now it's dust-free and un-smudged.

But as with any laptop, the fact remains that you simply can't see colors very accurately. This one is fairly accurate as far as laptops go, but whenever I change the colors on this blog I have to go check them on my parents' computer, and I generally gasp or say "eww" when I see it because it's a whole lot brighter/different shade/etc.

That being said, I got the colors changed for fall. Although it's supposed to be a high of 75 tomorrow, it is in fact finally fall and feeling like it most of the time, which I love. Lovely, lovely weather. Some friends and I walked around Reynolda Gardens a little bit yesterday and it was almost chilly at times. It felt good though. I'd rather be outside in cool weather than hot.

Last week at work I was outside with the toddler and I was trying to figure out why she was "Uh-oh-ing" about the leaves on the ground. Oh, right! Leaves are supposed to be on the trees and they've fallen off. So I tried to explain to her in a simple manner that leaves fall off the trees when it gets cold, and then when it's warm again the next year the trees will grow new leaves. Then I thought of deciduous trees, and that was the point at which I drew a complete blank. How on earth do you explain that some trees do keep their leaves? I don't even know the scientific reason, if there is one; just that they do. I ended up saying that "Some of the trees keep their leaves during the winter to stay warm"...and as soon as the words were out of my mouth thought "I did NOT just say that...!" They keep their leaves to stay warm? How stereotypically "trying to explain to a child" can you get?! Ah well. :P At least I don't think she was really listening to me very closely, so probably no real harm done. ;) is now feeling like fall, and my blog looks more like fall. And as a note: Coldplay, Keane, U2, and One Republic is a good mix to listen to while doing web-design. I'm just sayin'...

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Perhaps I've been looking at knitting patterns too long

I've been looking for glove patterns because I got a new coat for this winter and I want to knit some gloves to go with it.

Anyway, in the process I also found this crocheted skirt pattern: Spiderweb Skirt

Good: It can be made with acrylic worsted-weight yarn, so not overly expensive or finicky, and look how neat it looks.
Bad: It's a whole stinkin' skirt! Am I crazy? (Wait, maybe I shouldn't be saying that when I'm in the middle of knitting a whole dress sort of thing with really, really thin yarn.)

But anyway...

In other patterns, these are very cute, but a little too cutesy for me, plus the pattern only comes in Finnish, and since I don't know Finnish I wouldn't be able to finish them...let alone start them. Oh quit groaning, I couldn't help it.

These are pretty...I have never knitted a sock in my life, not even a normal little plain sock:

I believe I'm suffering over-ambitious-knitting-fever. Otherwise known as OAKF.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

It is what it is

And what it is right now is this:

Yes, it looks tiny, but amazingly it will fit'll stretch some when it's done, for starters.

That would be my latest knitting project which is going to be this when it's done, as long as everything goes as smoothly as it has shockingly gone so far. I've never had a knitting project that was so interesting and yet not difficult and completely lacking in wonky knitting instructions. It's awesome.

I think this is my favorite knitting project ever, and the only problem with is that it's really thin yarn so it's gonna take a LONG time to finish it.

The yarn is the stuff I was using to um, knit a sweater back in April of last year. :P I got pretty much the whole body of the sweater done and realized it wasn't going to This one is going a whole lot better.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

An issue of trust

"To believe is simply to trust, to depend, to rely upon Christ Jesus." Morning and Evening, Evening of October 5th, by Charles Spurgeon.

I read that this morning, and while the section was about repentance and baptism and such and how that is not what saves a person, the line above stuck out for me.

"To believe is simply to trust, to depend, to rely upon Christ Jesus."

Trust. And trust is something I have a problem with, trust in that sense anyway. I know I'm not saved by anything I do, I know that it's nonsense to think that anything I do, whether praying, or whatever you could categorize as "good works" is truly any good at at all. That doesn't mean they're pointless, just that that does not save a person. I have no problem with admitting I am in fact helpless in that area, and I'm forever thankful for God's grace in saving me.

But when it comes to relying on Christ, completely, fully, depending and relying on Him...that I struggle with. I think most people who know me well probably know I have a slight obsession with planning. I don't like for the majority of things to be unplanned, unorganized. In some cases I'm alright with it, somehow, whether that's from just not caring, or realizing somehow that there's not going to be anything I can do about it.

Take the current politics for instance...sure, I don't agree with all that's going on, but "The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will. ~Proverbs 21:1" I'm willing to accept that there's nothing I personally can do by fretting about it, and complaining as a lot of people I've heard, about how the government's going to hell in a handbasket. (Note: I wish I knew the origin of that phrase...) I'm willing to accept that what God has planned for us as a nation will happen, whether, even, it's something we like or not.

But when it comes to my life and what I think I'm in control of, I want to plan, and I fret. You fret? you might be saying...or maybe you're not surprised at all. I'm a control freak. And even when it comes to letting my life rest in the hands of God, the safest place it could possibly be, still I panic. I waver between trying to figure out everything for myself, and admitting that it's not really in my control, and yet....if I just did this, maybe it would work better, and if I hadn't said or done that things wouldn't go wrong.

I worry that I've made and will make wrong decisions about things, I worry that things just aren't going to work out...and maybe they aren't; that's almost as hard. Maybe things won't happen the way I want them to. I always find myself thinking "The Lord is in control and what He has planned for my life will happen and will be what's best for me...but..." I make a decision, and then I panic and wonder if that was really the right thing, with a feeling that I may have totally ruined my future by whatever decision I made. Or I feel that whatever event just happened ruined the chances of things working; for instance our church is very, very small...and within my human comprehension I don't see how it would ever get bigger. There are no jobs to move to North Carolina for, as far as I know, and in fact people in our church are losing their jobs, and while they may not want to move, it may not work out that they have any option. And I don't want families to have to leave our church, I would miss them.

I suppose to a certain extent I have a selfish inability to let things go...anything that affects my life I feel I should have some control over and yet there's often nothing I can actually do. So I struggle with trust in all areas of my life. Not trust in people, as far as that goes I know where I stand, but trust that my life is in fact already planned even though I can't see it. And it's that blindness that stresses me.

While thinking about this this morning, I read my cousin's blog post, in which she mentions plans and trust as well. It always sounds mean to say that I'm happy to hear another person is going through what I am, but what I mean is that I'm grateful to know I'm not the only one. So I was encouraged, strangely, by that, and I hope maybe this will encourage her as well.

She did make me laugh as well, with one sentence that made me burst out laughing and probably spit on my computer screen in the process...all in a good way. It was funny, but I liked/agreed with it. :)

Regarding her plans: "They start out so nicely--I will go to college for four years and be an excellent teacher for a little while, then I will get married and have four kids and adopt four kids and live in a cozy house and make cookies and pot roast and finally be a kindly wise old lady, the fun kind who is always telling high school girls how hot her husband is..." And that last part would be the point at which I burst out laughing. :) Awesome.

So I'd just like to also ask for prayer in this matter, if you happen to think of it. As G.K. Chesterton said: "Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."

Monday, October 05, 2009

Extremely miscellaneous

First of all, I didn't realize Jars of Clay had done a cover of "Lonely People" by America. But I saw it on a CD I was thinking about buying and found this cute video someone made to go with it.

I like that song...although it really makes no sense. But then, what with the "Horse With No Name" song and all, America wasn't exactly known for making much sense. Although I find another song I like is by them too: Sister Golden Hair. At least that one makes sense. But I guess it's expecting a lot from a 70s band for them to sound sane very often. ;)

This is one of the Jars of Clay CDs I was looking at: Who We Are Instead

I find I have a bit of a dilemma. I could just buy CDs from iTunes as mp3 files, but then I don't have the physical CD. Some CDs look really neat too, like The Avett Brothers CD "Emotionalism" is silver with birds on it and looks really cool, and some CDs have lyrics in the liner notes (nowhere near enough of them do that though, I think there should be lyrics in all liner notes), but other than that, I don't do anything with the CD once it's uploaded to my computer. I guess if I lost my music files I would still have the CD and be able to upload them again, but it's cheaper to just get mp3s, and I could probably find free mp3s to replace any I'd previously bought but lost, unless it was something rare. So I'm not sure what I want to do. There are several CDs I want to buy, but I can't decide what form to get them in. Thoughts??

I also remembered that I never posted about last month's mail art postcards. I had two because I sent one both to Lauren and Caroline.

"Flowers & Fashions in Pink and Green"
Mixed media collage

"Fashions and Shapes"
Mixed media collage

And this is this month's (Carolyn's):
"A word of encouragement"
Colored pencil and ink.

Quite honestly it wasn't my original plan to write on that, but I drew all the flowers and vines, and it still needed something so I decided it would be a background, and wrote as neatly as I am capable of. :P

This month I need to be thinking about my design a little earlier...last month flew by and I realized it was the last week and I hadn't started my postcard yet. So, I'll add that to my list of crafting stuff to figure out.

But right now it's Monday, I have cleaning to do, and one of those things to be cleaned is my desk...I lost my iPod somewhere under the piles and I want it before bathroom cleaning and such.

Have a good week! I shall really try to blog more often, but I make no promises. :/

Sunday, October 04, 2009

No fair!

So, the fair is this week. None of us entered anything this year because we just haven't had much time in the past year to get things made, and if we have it's not been fair-quality things.
I usually enter some sewing, knitting, photography, and baking, but I've sewn things the way I'm happy with them, which is not always perfect; I haven't gotten any great knitting done; and the baking can be extremely last-minute and stressful. So no fair entries this year.

I kind of miss it. The rush of getting things done in time, the dropping stuff off and smiling at the ooo-ing and ah-ing of the ladies checking things in. The relaxing and not thinking about the judging going on on Thursday...usually we're too busy cleaning the sugar and flour off the kitchen to think about it too much anyway. And then going to the fair on Friday to see what you won, and figuring how much money you got from the prizes. Eating a funnel cake and some other over-priced fair food and wandering around in large crowds of people that you just don't see the rest of the year...(where do they hang out usually?) We don't usually go on rides because right now I'm the only one in my family that doesn't mind being spun around and flipped upside down on a ride. I'm hoping Colin will outgrow his fear of heights, etc., someday: it's a foreign concept to me. :)

We would have had to be getting things ready on Tuesday, and then drop them off on Wednesday. However, on Tuesday I worked and on Tuesday night I had time to go contra dancing. Then I was thinking about my friend who was getting back from Minneapolis at noon the next day, and then had to get her entries rounded up and taken to the fair. Plus her brother who I took to contra was saying on the way home that he still had ten things to finish that night (this was at about 11!)...and I wasn't feeling so bad about not having the stress that goes with all of this! :D

I'm thinking about what I want to do for next year though, because unless I'm really busy next year too, I want to enter things. I think since I took a year off, I should be able to actually focus on getting things done throughout the year as opposed to feeling burnt out and ready for a break like I usually do right after the fair. :)

I'm working on a knitting project right now, it's going to either be a dress or a tunic, depending on how much yarn I have. And so far I haven't made any mistakes on it either, which is very unusual with a knitting project! I'll post some pictures when I get enough knitted to be worth photographing. At the moment it's kind of a big lump on a needle.

As far as anything else, I don't have anything specific planned to work on this year. Oh, and my cross-stitch project I've had going for years. I should probably finish that this year. And I'll do some photography. I really should make a list of what all I could get done this year.

In other news...well, life as usual I think. I can't think of anything terribly exciting that's happened lately. :)