Thursday, July 27, 2006

And so it begins

This weekend is the annual gathering of crazy people in the Copper Country. I've already run into bwittig and his wife, and am heading out to tceisele's after the Karate test tonight. And drsulak and his wife came in last night so we all went out to dinner.

More later...

Monday, July 24, 2006

Monday, monday...

It was a nice weekend in the Copper Country, cool and a bit rainy, and a good weekend to do lots of things.

Saturday we got the house cleaned up in record time, did all the grocery shopping for a month or so, and WOO HOO! the washing machine was fixed on Friday so we could catch up on laundry. (It had puked because of all the sand from the camping trip.)

Andy made a fabulous dinner on Saturday. A slow roasted pork roast with mashed potatoes, fresh asparagus with ginger-garlic mayo, and I made Bruschetta al Pomodoro. The organic farmers market had fresh tomatoes, basil, peppers, potatoes, leeks, lettuce, and much more. I went crazy, and it was SO GOOD.

I had been hording a treat for a couple of weeks for when I had lots of time and Saturday it was it. I put all my Unfinished Craft Objects into a basket, sat down in front of the TV, and put in the first disk of the first season of West Wing.

2 shawls, 2 pairs of socks, a scarf and 1 1/2 pockets on a sweater later I had watched 2 DVD's and it was midnight.

I got up on Sunday morning with a headache, but watched the 3rd DVD while working on Andy's endless sweater. Then I took a nap. Then I went upstairs and took a longer nap.

Katie came over for dinner and wedding dress discussions and she worked on a necklace she's making while I did socks and we decided on a wedding dress style and pattern... probably... we got sucked into saree land for a while looking for trim, but managed to dig ourselves out by only bookmarking pages instead of buying saree silk to cut up for a wedding dress.

All in all a good weekend...

First thing this morning, before coffee, I threatened to break grad student's arms because they were playing around with our network switches. And the rest of the day has gone on in the same mode...

Thursday, July 20, 2006

The week in review

Wow, it's only Thursday. Why isn't it Friday already, I've done a weeks worth of work? I've done 2 weeks worth of work, truth to be told.

Last weekend we had a rare "too hot to breath" weekend in the Copper Country. Friday morning I was thinking about it being 90+ and humid on Saturday and .. we have this little popup camper... and there are loads of really nice camp grounds on Lake Superior, where the temp would be 10 degrees cooler.

There were two spots at McLains State Park and we grabbed the one on the lake. We got the camper out and set it up and made sure there was food and cooking equipment and bedding and headed out. Saturday afternoon was lovely, the temp was nice, the breeze was off the lake, so the bugs weren't bad, the kids swam and swam and so did we.

Early Sunday morning a storm blew in. Not a little storm. High winds, hail, and torrential rain. The kids woke up at 4:30 with the hail hitting the plastic and canvas camper. At 5 there was a break in the storm, and Andy took the kids down to the bathroom (because of course with all that running water sound, everyone had to go). The dog was seriously pissed. The kids had GONE OUTSIDE IN THAT MESS AND DIDN'T TAKE HIM. And he was pretty annoyed with me (Patrick, the littlest one, managed to sleep through the entire storm so I stayed with him and the dog.) By the time they got back, it was lightening again, and so I drove to the bathroom. On the way back I spotted some of the initial damage... tents down, dining canvas in trees, flooded camp sites. The water was up to the step on our camper, but we were dry and a little stuffy inside.

The worst part of the whole thing was that, when we got up on Sunday morning, there was no electricity. No electricity, no coffee. NO COFFEE. We packed up and went home to dry the camper out and get some coffee.

Monday was spent in a "discussion" with the Associate Provost about technology in the newly renovated classrooms in Chem Sci. My stand has been that things get stolen. I'm happy to put old, crappy computers into the classrooms, but we have new computers to go in there... if I can put security cameras into them.

Security cameras are a violation of academic freedom, says the Assoc. Provost. I say "No active security, then, if you'll GUARENTEE the university will replace anything stolen, we'll put them in." She doesn't want to do that either. And now she'does not want computers on the College of Engineering network. I offer Rovernet. No deal. As there is no other option for us, we are NOT supplying the computers for Chem Sci. But it took all day, and an email flood with an every growing cc: list to determine that. And I learned that the Provost's office has no idea about the state of technology and how things are run in IT on campus.

Tuesday my boss says "I need raise recommendations from you by Friday, with justifications." ok. I start on the justifications-- I have to write 4.

Late Tuesday he says "The Dean changed the deadlines, I need them by tomorrow." As it took me 3 hours to write 1, it was ... difficult... but by Wednesday, 4:00 I had raises figured and justifications written.

Thursday I have to finish and deliver the reviews, along with the raises recommended. Just finished Javier's, tomorrow I'm doing Rob, Henry and Kim. Plus I have to meet with the building engineer and his boss to discuss my 7th floor air conditioning project, which was cancelled with no notice by the building engineer and reinstated by me when I found out.

On the crafty front, I finished the cotton shawl on the loom while watching the 1st season of Babylon 5. I started another one while still watching the 1st season of Babylon 5. Travel knitting has been Gabe's Christmas Sock and the orange cotton hat.

Are we SURE it isn't Friday yet?

Monday, July 10, 2006

Nice Party

Saturday was our 11th wedding anniversary. Coincidentally, it was also my Great-Uncle's 90th birthday. We had a huge party for him in the park. My cousins expect 150 people. There were more like 400 people... and, other than kids, only 2 I didn't know. (Of course, Kid status seems to start at about 30 now.) (I don't know if anyone ever found out who the guy standing by the beer cooler all day was, I never found anyone who knew who he was... oh well, he was friendly, anyway.)

Observations:

1) Where did all the little blond girls between 7 and 11 come from? Or were they all the same little girl, just in different swimming suits?

2) While thinking my uncle hasn't changed, I found a picture of him from 20 years ago. He hasn't changed. Kinda like the picture of Dorian Grey. Although when I went to bring him pictures from the party on Sunday, he was "damned tired" and sitting in his house talking to his daughter and I in sweats with bare feet. I've never seen him without at least slippers, even when I used to spend the night at their house when I was little. He said he had had a good time, but now he was "popped".

Of course, that might have something to do with the fact that, the last I saw of him, he and his friend from HS with were drinking Brandy with lemonaide (all that was left to drink) and laughing... in the park... as it got dark... more than 8 hours after the party started. Also, the Belly Dancer might have had something to do with it.

I can only hope I have that much fun at my 90th.

3) I have yet to figure out how to make the damned digital camera focus on the thing I want to take the picture of instead of the closest thing.

4)Holy COW! Some of my little cousins grew up to look VERY NICE! (Jake, Mike, Ryan, you guys look GOOD... and have really nice wives/kids/in laws).

5) The Gervais gene's are strong. Not only do the Gervais' look like each other, all their kids look like them, and they all look like their Grandpa. Armand and Ione being the exception, their kids look like Ione (more French than french? Ione is 2nd generation and the Gervais' are 3rd).

6) How funny it is that cousins I haven't seen in ... 15 or 16 years... just pick up the conversation like we just saw each other a couple of days ago.

7) The difference between my Great-Uncle, who has been around the family the last 30 or 40 years, and my Great- Aunt, who comes up from Texas once every 20 years or so, while looking at pictures. Aunt Nancy says "Who's that?" I say 'Chris and Trevor, Sambo's middle son, and their daughter" Uncle White says "Boy, that Chris gets better looking every year. And isn't Amber growing up to be a beauty!"

8) Andy brought the family tree. I was looking at my cousin, Danielle, with her baby, thinking that the baby made 7 generations from Grandma Hart, who immigrated from Ireland, to today. My Great-Uncle had 4 generations running around. That was pretty cool.


Andy and I aren't so stuck on dates. We tend to celebrate our birthday/anniversary/valentines day/birthday "whenever." The important thing is that we get 4 dates a year, dammit... not that they actually happen around the event to which they are attributed. :)

In the world of FO:
1 Orange Hat

And FINALLY DELIVERED AFTER 2 YEARS: The strawberry cotton sweater. And just in time, it fits very well.

Friday, July 07, 2006

It's been so nice

To have been on vacation. It was so nice, in fact, that I kinda took the last two days off, too. I've been ignoring the reviews. Totally. Completely. They make me crabby.

So, instead, I've spent the last two days either in meetings which have nothing to do with staff members (giving the new CIO a tour or the Sysadm Council) or discussing the technological problems involved with networking the many clusters together on campus... which is just fun... great, gory, gobs of geeking in languages not many people grok. Application sharing, file sharing, recursive NFS mounting, licensing issues, accounting issues, and on and on.

But the reviews are nagging at me... making me feel guilty...

I should just sit down on Sunday with a large mug of fine Scotch and my laptop and get them done all at once. I'll send Andy and the kids to Green Bay or some such so I don't affect innocent people.

I should probably send the dog and cats with him.

Really crabby.

WIP
Yet another orange hat, which doesn't help the crabbiness. I need something beautiful and intricate to work on. But first I need to finish up all these UFO's.

I have:
A scarf for my mom
Socks for my mom
Andy's Endless sweater
a felt pillow
a shawl
an orange hat
a red poncho
and a cotton Shawl on the loom.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Under the catagory of WHAT WERE THEY THINKING?

Shoe designers...

I get this catalog. I have NO idea how I got on this mailing list. The models are anorexic, the clothes are UGLY or scary, or both... but it provides much horrified amusement here at Chez Peed.

Normally I can find something in a catalog that has redeeming qualities. Usually shoes. I love shoes. All kinds of shoes... high heels, retro, flats, sandals, boots. Whether I'll ever wear them or not, I really love shoes (I still regret not buying the orange sherbert pumps).

This catalog, however, doesn't have any good shoes. In fact, they are so ugly you have to wonder who hates women such that they would design women's shoes to be THIS UGLY. There is no woman anywhere in the world who would look good in these shoes. They are all along the lines of the floral cowboy boots (warning, not for the faint of heart or anyone at all with any kind of reasonable taste) or ugliest shoes I've ever seen in my life

Who the hell buys these things?

KIP:
The hat for Jeanne (see previous post) has proven to be VERY popular amongst my younger relatives. I have now committed to make 3 of them. I got bored with the round and round Round Orange Hat, however, so I'm hoping it is the Orange Cotton Hat of Any Sort which is popular and am trying a different pattern (which I'm making up as I go along) to see if the kids like that as well. If it works out, I'll do a pdf and post it somewhere.