luciab: (Default)
I had a good weekend; I got to spend several hours with a couple of women working on scribal stuff. We got a lot done, I think. Fun, too, and very relaxed. And the spiced peach-blueberry pie I made was yum! A note to [livejournal.com profile] nomadicmedic-- I used HT's frozen piecrusts. They are great-- flaky and good-- I like them better than the brand name ones I've tried. Of course unless you have an HT handy, that's no help. Oops. But still, yay for frozen pie crust.

I got some straightening done before people came over. It wasn't bad before, but was straighter after. And this morning I had a respite between migraines and depression-induced lethargy and whatnot and got a fair amount of clearing done in the studio. Several square feet of floor are now visible that hadn't seen the light of day for months. I've got plans for more of the stuff that's here, too. I want to donate my old computer (it's slow but still works fine, and I would think it'd be a start for someone who doesn't have one at all) but want to be sure I can get everything off the hard drive so as to protect myself. (Unlike the hapless idiot who sold a non-working laptop and left all his pictures and personal info on it! The new owner apparently got it working, at least enough to recover the pics and plaster them all over the internet.)

I also need to get enough clearing done to get to the drafting table. I really would like to get some more scribing done. It is much more of a balm to my soul than I had realized. I was practicing callig yesterday and it was indescribably peaceful.

All the cleaning and straightening is required if I am to get a new dress made for Midsummer's, as I hope to do. I got some new linen in a beautiful dark green. Most of the other linen I have is light colored--what the hell was I thinking? Between the way I spill food all over myself (much like a two-year-old) and the mud that happens whenver it rains at an event or you walk around site in the dew, I fear it'd be a pitiful looking mess before I wore it a half-dozen times. And because I was shopping with a garb Laurel and trying to select appropriately period material, there is no pattern, eiather printed or woven into the fabric, to disguise said stains. There is a light yellow and a light green; both are beautiful, and both look good on me. Sad.

I was just looking at the dictionary and thesaurus for words that I could use humorously to mean "messy," as in a messy person, to describe how I'd look at the end of a rainy day after spilling food down my front. Man, it's way worse than I thought. "Slob," I found out, has overtones of "jerk" so that's not one I'd want to use even jokingly. I mean, I have my bad days, but still. "Sloven" means a person lacking precision or tidiness in personal appearance, but the word (at least to me) has overtones of much more than untidiness. I'm going to settle for "mess." It's a word my Aunt Jean uses affectionately and seems to be most appropriate. I'm a mess. Just be sure to put the affection in there, would you?
luciab: (Default)
The weather we've been having in this part of the country is most unusual. Sometimes it seems like people say that every year, but if so they're usually complaining about it getting hot so early. This year we're already at mid May and it's still in the 50's every night and has been in the low to mid 70's during the days. There was one hot week in April that nearly fried poor Max (just moved here from Canada) but other than that it's been way cool. I'm not complaining, but damn, it's weird. I'm still wearing heavy socks around the house at night.

I'm looking forward to Friday night-- I'm having a planning session with my apprentice and soon-to-be-apprentice for the ceremony where we'll formalize the relationship. It's going to be at Midsummer's Twilight Tourney in June, exactly a year after I took Livia as an apprentice. We had only decided at Sapphire Joust last year, so it was put together in quite a rush. We're planning a bit further in advance this time!

I don't have any Italian Ren that fits me now, and I'd like to have something appropriate to my persona, so I'm hoping I'll get to make a new dress before Midsummer's. Even I am getting embarrassed about wearing the comfy tunics all the time. They aren't even embroidered with cool stuff, just plain old generic tunics made from cheap Wally World cotton (yes, I know. I haven't bought anything from them for months now, and I felt guilty when I did. And yes (no?), I know that I don't get brownie points for guilt. Too bad, I'd be rich. Or at least covered in brownies.) Anyway, I'm trying to find suitable fabric in my stash of stuff-- surely there's something.

Nia said the other night she'd like to learn enough calligraphy to do cards for herself, so she bought a set of cartridge pens and asked me to help her get started. Her handwriting is already good, so I figured she had a good basis. That woman could be really good if she ever seriously turned her mind to it; the first couple of words she did were shaky but nearly as good as a few scribes who have been working for years. Sad, but true. I gave her the "15 minutes a day" pep talk and can't wait to see what evolves. She has expressed great surprise that there is an SCA art form that she might actually be good at.

Despite all my assertions about not liking calligraphy as much as painting, I think the callig has snuck up on me and got me addicted. When I was helping her get started I did a few letters and started getting to the Zen stage immediately. She had to practically pry the pen from my fingers. How did that happen? So in addition to making myself new garb, I also need to find time to do callig. Maybe it'd help soothe the soul.

Of more pressing concern, however, is clearing out stuff from the apartment. I have lots of fabric (totally NON period) kitchen gear and cookware, an old computer, and more that I need to get rid of. My current thinking is to make a list of what I want to part with, and then post it, maybe to the Windmasters' list, saying if you want it, come get it. Maybe post in the journal(s) first, then on the list. I like that idea better than Freecycle or Craig's list; I'm just more comfortable having SCAdians come to my house than I am with total strangers. Anyway, when the SCAdians are done picking over it, I'll put the rest out on the street for the curb elves or take it to Goodwill or equivalent.

I think that's all the news that's fit to print right now. Ta ta!

luciab: (Default)
So I got up this AM, took one look at the litter box, and decided to clean it, out of respect for the beloved kitties. Yes, before eating or having coffee or anything, or, for that matter, waking all the way up. Really, sometimes it's best that way. Got it all done, including cleaning the floor over and around said facility, and filled up the box with fresh litter, this time a wood-based, pine-fresh scoopable type. (I'm experimenting, and thank god the cats don't seem to care what I put in there as long as it’s reasonably fresh.) Whereupon I left for the kitchen to make coffee and the cats all decided to leave their marks in the new stuff. They were practically standing around watching the whole process with their furry little legs crossed, so this was no surprise.

While the coffee started burbling, I threw a banana and some orange juice into the blender. Since it’s dawned on me that I never finish OJ before it starts to ferment, I used some still-frozen stuff and a little water. Whirred it around a bit to get the worst of the lumps out, and added the yogurt. Whirrrrr…. CLUNK! A truly terrifying sound. I lifted the blender jar by the handle—and the jar came off the bottom, dumping 2 cups of yogurt smoothie all over the counter. Ick, I tell you. It cleaned up more easily than I first thought, since after taking a look at the cause of the clunk, I simply threw the whole mess into the trash. (Something broke, something plastic which should not have been plastic, but what do you get when you buy a really cheap blender? Plastic.)

Settled on yogurt and a banana—each by itself—doctored my coffee and went back to the bathroom to start the shower. Huh. Seems the new litter, being basically just sawdust, does not have the weight of the clay stuff, so when the cats stepped on the edge to exit the box, it tipped over, dumping freshly used litter all over the floor.

See what I mean about not so much? I’m almost afraid to get in the car to drive to school. The possibilities are mind-boggling.
luciab: (Default)
The "maintenance" man was just here to work on the dripping shower head and the plugged up tub. (Hmmm-- I probably shouldn't put the quotes around the word "maintenance" since all he seems to do is maintain whatever the status of the problem is--ie, nothing gets fixed.) He took his wrench and banged on the shower handles/valves for a while and decided that the cold water was the one that was leaking. I wandered by the bathroom door just after he made this determination, so he had to share his discovery with me. I was confused, since we'd already talked about it being the hot water that was leaking.

Ummm....no, it's the hot that leaks, I said.

No, hon, the water dripping out of the faucet feels cold, holding his hand under the shower to demonstrate. And see, this just turns around and around and doesn't shut off, he said, twirling the cold water valve.

Since (a) the valve wasn't turning all the way around without shutting off before he banged on it, (b)he'd been calling me "hon" the whole time he was here, and (c) was being very condesending, because obviously I'm just a GIRL, this was the final straw. Of course, being the Southern lady that I am, I don't lose my temper, exactly, but I could feel my face get hot. Well, when it's LEAKING and I tighten down the hot water tap, it leaks LESS, I say with some asperity. I don't know whether the red face, the tone of voice or (god forbid) the logic finally convinced him, but he wisely didn't argue the point. Of course, he hasn't made it stop leaking, either, so who knows? He has proudly announced that the cold water tap doesn't spin around any more, and it IS still leaking, so maybe he does belive me now.
luciab: (Default)
Well, you see it all started when.... when did it start exactly? A lot of little things sort of built up. Like I have two computers, one older but still eminently functional. I could use it for data storage, and to play music. I have two printer/fax/scanners. The newer one of them is currently only partially working, since the graphics tablet screwed up the installation, and now I can't find the installation disk. My need for full function is still in place, however, and there sits the other scanner with me unable to use it. (It isn't USB, or I'd just hook the sucker up.) But if everything were networked together.... hrm.

With that in mind, I looked around the studio/office for a place to put the other system. Every horizontal surface is covered with stuff. Fabric, other sewing stuff, books, boxes of stuff that hasn't been unpacked since I moved in here nearly three years ago. You know, stuff. Brigida came over today (she of the boundless energy) and we were talking about the situation. She took a more global view than I had been doing, and suggested a series of rearrangements that included the hall closet. It all made sense (well, nearly all of it) and I started immediately.

The resulting temporary chaos has me re-evaluating everything I pick up to move-- do I need it? Want it? Does it fit? Can it be taken in? I have my work cut out for me, guys. And this on top of sewing for Pennsic and making a court scroll, with some studying for the GRE tucked into the mix. And you guys who are doing all this AND have full time jobs? Hats off to you, is all I can say.

I'm not entirely sure my proposed solution is going to be the best, but I don't have any other ideas. I'm thinking I'll use the door/table that was going to be a cutting table for a desk for both computers and printers. The printer is now on the bottom shelf of the desk, which means I have to stand on my head-- or sit on the floor-- anytime I want to use it. If I did that, I could get rid of the current computer desk and put the TV in this corner. Except that the "cutting table" is even higher than the computer desk, which is already too high for me to use unless I put my chair up as high as it'll go and use the bottom shelf of the table for a foot rest. I do need to be comfortable at the computer, because I don't just use if a few minutes a day for email, but for hours doing graphics, which will be key if I intend to sell any printed art work. Maybe if I move the printer over there but keep this computer here.... then the closet door is still blocked by the TV. Shit.

Nevertheless, I need to make decisions and arrangements before I can do anything about the scanner and computer. And this is exactly the kind of mental shit I hate so bad. I just want to DO it, I don't want to have to think backwards, and rearrange the whole damn house, one step at a time, and in the proper sequence or I won't have a place to put whatever it is I just picked up. Aaargh!

Ya know what? Right now what I really need to do is get ready to go to the FlamingBolt potluck and cookout. My contribution- a peach-blueberry cobbler-- is done. I just need to prep the lap work I'm going to take to sew on. I think I'll do that right now. I'll worry about the rest tomorrow.

Catching up

May. 3rd, 2005 10:07 pm
luciab: (Default)
It’s been too long since I posted… time sure slips away. I’ve been busy and kept thinking of things I wanted to write but I was getting so much done I hated to stop work to write. When have you ever heard me say that? And now I’ve forgotten too much of it. Sigh.

Brigida came over Saturday last as planned for our white dinner, and we had a really good time. It’s been so long I can’t remember everything we fixed, but the main dish was shrimp with mushrooms in white wine sauce, served with rice. We cheated and had brown rice, but that’s still pretty damn white. Dessert was angel food cake with vanilla ice cream and a kiwi/mango topping that was delicious. Don’t blame me for all the color in the fruit—Brigida did it. Since the whole white theme was her doing, I just went with it, and it was might tasty, too. She was feeling in a mood to spoil us, and got white roses for a centerpiece. I was delighted to be able to provide a few low-drama hours in her life. I’ve had plenty of drama, and I’m just mighty damn glad I’m not having any right this minute. It’ll be back, I’m sure of it. Wait, am I supposed to knock on wood or something now? Throw salt somewhere?

I’m working on a backlog scroll, so it isn’t even a secret. It’s been fun—lately I’ve been doing mostly court scrolls, so I’ve gotten into the habit of being secretive about what I’m working on and not letting the recipient know. This is Gisele’s AoA, and I’ve had to almost force myself to ask her questions about preferences. I’ve got the calligraphy done. It actually went better than usual, which was a vast relief. Practice! I’ve got to practice more. Duh. I know I’m always amazed at the difference it makes but I still don’t do it.

I was hoping to have Gigi’s scroll done by the time I go up this weekend for Crown, since I’m staying at her place. I don’t think it’s going to happen, though—at least not if I go up early to see a museum or two as I’d planned. I’m going to blame it on Nia and Nikulai, okay? They’ve been concerned that I’ve been too hermit-like, so they’ve kept me busy the last week or two. I mean, busy. Last week I was Out Doing Stuff three nights in a row, which is unheard of for me, at least the last few years. It was great fun, and I wanted to do every bit of it. Except… I wasn’t working on Gigi’s scroll. I’m good, but even I can’t be two places at once. I admit, it wasn’t ALL their doing. They were just too damn proud of themselves, is all. But on Wednesday night I found out that hot fudge cake is absolutely delicious with champagne, (Heh! I say, and Yum!!) and on Thursday night Nikulai fixed an email thing for me before we all went out for Mexican food, and on Friday he took me to Hillsboro to the opening of an art show and then we went to dinner again. He particularly wanted me to meet some other artist friends of his.

One of the things that has had me a bit distracted is the whole question of starting a small business out of my home. This has come up before, and I’m still scared witless by the concept. Read more... )

The headaches and their effect on me have been really erratic. Read more... )

I’ve had a lot more energy and gotten a lot more done lately. For example, I’ve been on a cleaning kick. First I did the kitchen, then the bathroom, then night before last I was putting away laundry and got annoyed because the linen closet was a mess, so I rearranged everything in it. Wow. What’s up with that? Most days the scroll work has been equally efficient, too. Not that I’m complaining, you understand. I want to work on the apartment as much as I want to find out about the business stuff, so I’m going to be bi-i-izzzzy.

I have been reading an interesting book by a woman who has had chronic migraines for several years. The book is called All in My Head and the author’s name is Paula Kamen. It’s both entertaining and informative.Read more... )

The fiction I’ve just finished reading is With No One As Witness, which is the latest in the Thomas Lynley/ Barbara Havers series written by Elizabeth George. That sucker has depressed the hell out of me. It’s slightly less depressing now than before I knew how it ended. Still, I hated the ending, which is just … awful. Hated it. So there. She gives you one hopeful thing in the last paragraph, but I’m afraid to read the next one (whenever she writes it,) for fear of what she’ll do next. It only makes it worse that she’s such a good writer, because then you really care what happens to the people in the book. I might make someone else read it first (like Ysolt—she’s the one who got me hooked on the series) and tell me if it’s safe to read.

I was very disappointed yesterday to find that Amy had mailed me a complete set of CDs of the music from their wedding over a week ago, and I haven’t gotten it. Oddly enough, I had been thinking I’d like to have the music. I was probably thinking that about the time she mailed it. (Let’s hear it for that mother-daughter connection…. Ooooh weeeeeeoooooh…) Anyway, that’s the second item mailed to me in less than a month that I didn’t get. I knew our mail isn’t real secure but I’d never been aware of a problem before. Amy said the package was just a plain CD mailer and was obviously nothing special, so she can’t imagine that anyone would bother to take it. It’s just weird, though….

I'm going to call it a night, and hope I'm back in go-get 'em mode tomorrow. And I'll take some light reading to bed with me. A mystery that is entertaining and doesn't make you get all engrossed in the characters and then... oh, nevermind.
luciab: (Default)
Rather Experienced
You are 53% pure



My test tracked 1 variable How you compared to other people your age and gender:
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 47% on purity
Link: The 100 Point Sexual Purity Test written by ocicat on OkCupid Free Online Dating


Okay. I can live with that. I was afraid I'd be all pure and disgrace myself. How horrible! Especially since I just finished coloring my hair red and feel like I should get the most bang for the buck. So to speak. Oh, and since I use henna instead of chemical dye, the hair won't be flashy orange next time you see me, but a darker richer brown with bright red "highlights." Yeah, that's the ticket. Highlights.

I've been busy this morning and have been working on my closet and such, cleaning out stuff that's too big, too old and too tacky. If it's just too big, like jeans, I'm probably too paranoid to get rid of it and just folded it on the top shelf. If it's really old and tacky, though, it's going to get donated this afternoon, along with the gaudy strawberry plates my mom gave me. Hey, I like strawberries on my plate alright, but the real kind I can eat off the plate, not the painted on kind. Anyway, Miranda discovered the joy of leaping onto the sweater shelf while I was sorting it and there was no stopping her. And (I suppose) non-cat lovers wonder why I have little pulls all over my sweaters. It's not as if I don't pick them up after I get dressed to go out, but them leaping onto the sweater shelf from afar and clutching to hang on doesn't help either.

Oh, and the pic is of Carmen.

I'd better keep moving or I won't get anything else sorted to go to the goodwill place. Ta!
luciab: (Default)
After yesterday's entry, I wouldn't want you to think that's the most exciting it gets around here. It may be true, but I don't have to want it known, do I?

Today Nia and I did the laundry early, thus guaranteeing that I will be confused all week as to what day it is. We usually do laundry on Sunday, not Saturday, and I fear I have become a creature of habit. If I were doing something distinctly Saturday-night-ish tonight it would help re-set my clock, but nope, Not happening. I'll be here, painting away.

The painting is coming along very nicely, BTW. The last few days I had a kind of mental block and kept not wanting to paint the people, but this morning it was all gone away and I've gotten a good start on the people. Whew. Things were getting sort of critical.

I woke up in the middle of the night with an earache. It hurt every time I swallowed and I kept wanting my mommy to put warm oil in it or bring me a heating pad. I never quite woke up enough to go get the heating pad myself, but the first thing I did this morning-- before breakfast, before feeding the cats-- was look up "earache" on about.com. They recommend putting cold on the ear instead of heat but that sure wasn't what I had in mind in the middle of the night. I took some pseudoephedrine this morning, on the theory that if it's caused by stuffy sinuses, maybe that'd help, and it seemed to. Or maybe that was just the tylenol I took at the same time. Sigh. I wonder if the pseudo-phed will just mask symptoms, though? Aargh.

Why does this stuff always happen on a weekend? I'm getting a sore throat with it, too, so I'm afraid I'm in for an attack of the creeping crud. I need to refresh my memory on the differences between a cold and the flu so I don't bother going to a doctor if they can't really do anything. Worse would be if they give me something just because they think they should. I'm already taking plenty of pills, and I am seriously creeped out by what I've read about the rise in drug-resistant bacteria. I sure don't want to just take antibiotics for no reason.

A good deal of the painting I did yesterday was accomplished with Miranda draped over my lap and left arm. I'm so used to painting with a magnifying glass in my left hand, I was surprised at how much I could get done one-handed. When Carmen decided she needed love and tried to climb into my lap, too, though..... enough was enough. It was time to retreat to bed to dole out a good dose of kitten love before conking out.

Back to the painting table. That's sure to attract a kitten or two.

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Susan Arthur

February 2011

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