February 24, 2009

Good Grief, what a day!

Yesterday was one of those days that you're just glad when it's over. I woke up 15 min's late, ran around, grabbed a shower, grabbed some food, and ran out the door. Thankfully, I didn't forget my purse or my lunch. BUT on the way to work, I noticed that my truck was running a bit warm, not hot or over heating but warm and my heater isn't working. So naturally being the cold blooded person I am, I'm freezing because the heater is blowing cold air and I'm afraid to turn the heater off because it might cause the truck to over heat. The first gas station I pull into I couldn't find the water so I had to jump back onto the highway and keep going. In the mean time, I grabbed my phone to try to call Hubbs but every time I tried to call I kept getting a call failed message. So great, my truck is going to over heat, I'm going to end up walking down the highway in the dark and the rain to try and find a payphone to call AAA for a tow. And knowing my husband, I'd have been stopped on the highway and he wouldn't even notice as he drove right past me on his way to work.

Thankfully, it didn't over heat and I made it to the next gas station. The first station I pulled in to had water but it cost $.75 and all I had was $.50. Great. There was another station right next to it so I go over there and they have water and it's only $.50! I have $.50!!! So I put water in the radiator, jump back in my truck, fire her up and yay! I have heat!!! And the temp gauge goes back to normal.

At this point I'm feeling pretty good about myself. I handled my own car issue without any help from Hubbs. Get to work, get my regular parking spot, so I get to work. Got my good news that I wasn't going to get a Pink Slip! Called AT&T, got my phone fixed (apparently if you leave your phone on all the time, it will lock up and you have to turn it off, remove the battery, put it back and then turn it back on to fix it). Everything is going OK. Work morning, find out that after being told that we no longer need additional information from our institutions we do need the information and have to go back and re-request the information. Sheesh, make up your mind please! Anyway, that wasn't so bad.

So finally 5:30pm rolls around and I leave work to go home, jump back into my truck, start driving home. I get a couple of blocks from work and notice that my truck is running warm again and I have no heat. Again. Now I'm worried, adding the water should have fixed the problem. I call Hubbs and let him know what's going on and he starts asking about my oil pressure. I start sweating, my truck is going on 20 years old and I know that things go wrong when you have a vehicle that old but I love her and I want to keep her. Thankfully my oil pressure is normal, so Hubbs tells me to just keep going but to stop if it gets more then warm. No problem. I make it home watching my heat and oil pressure gauges like a hawk. Oil pressure: Normal. Heat: Warm. Never got hot, just warm.

When I got home I pulled into the drive way and Hubbs was waiting for me. I pop the hood for him and he puts water into my radiator for the 2nd time in one day. After a few min's he comes back to the window and says, "You've blown a hose." Great. Now I'm worried. Hubbs hates working my truck and it usually results in a thrown tools and a great number of cuss words. To quote my Grandma, "He could make a sailor blush!" Hubbs is sure that it'll be an easy fix because the hose is close to the top and he said that it looks like it's an original hose, so at 20 years old, he's not too surprised that it blew.

Since I just spent 45 min's in the car to go 25 miles from work, I run into the house to use the bathroom and wouldn't you know it...Aunt Flow showed up too! I really think that it just must have been my day! :*( So after I deal with that business, we run up to the auto part store. They don't have the right part, naturally. But we were able to get some hose and he was able to fix my truck. I even help by holding the flash light in the right place! Go me!! See?! I'm not totally worthless when it comes to dealing with automotive problems! lol Hubbs even got it done without any cussing and with a smile in his voice. He's a good hubbs and I made sure to thank him several times last night and again this morning before I went off to work.

After all of that last night, I was so glad to just sit down on the couch and finish sewing on the binding for a quilt that I quilted over the weekend and then work on some knitting. Boy and I glad that yesterday is over. Here's to hoping that today is a better day then yesterday!

February 23, 2009

I know the economy is tough all over but if you live in California and follow the news at all you know that the state legislature hadn't been able to pass a new budget since last June. I work for the state and at first the Governator started by threatening to give state workers 2 days off a month with out pay. Well that came to pass and on February 6th we had our first unpaid day off and our second one last Friday on the 20th. It's a bit tough knowing that they are giving basically a 10% pay cut when we (and by we I mean the lowly peon types) don't make that much money to begin with.

They've also been threatening to take away some of our paid holidays. Now I know that we have more then most people get but those days are supposed to make up for the fact that we don't get paid what people in the private sector make for doing the same jobs that we do for the government. I'm ok with making less because I feel like I'm doing good for my fellow Californians and those extra days off are helpful for keeping me sane. Let's face it, I really should have been June Cleaver. I wanna stay home, raise kids and generally be a domestic goddess. But since that isn't what my life is and I have to work so Hubbs and I can afford to have a home and do things like pay bills and buy groceries, I appreciate those extra days off. But now the state and the unions are in talks about reducing those unpaid days. Not really sure about how trading one day when we're all off to have one floating holiday saves the state any money, but whatever, I guess.

A little over a week ago, the Governor started to threaten the legislature that if they didn't get a budget together that he would issue pink lay off slips to 20,000 state workers. I tried not to think about but as the day got closer for him to issue the slips, the legislature got it together and were very close to balancing the budget, at one point just one vote was stopping them from balancing the budget. The Governor postponed the pink slips in an effort to encourage them, but Tuesday morning, February 17, the slips went out.

The Assistant Chief of my section called a meeting to let us know that they were issuing slips and that there were 13 people in our office that were going to be effected and that anyone with under five years of state service should be expecting a pink slip in the mail. One thing about working for the government is that it's not like the private sector when it comes to lay offs. You don't get a pink slip and then you're just gone. There are things you can do to save yourself and find a permeate position to avoid the lay off. Since I have less then five years I was very stressed about getting my slip and finding a new position or finding a job on the outside.

Since I heard on Tuesday about the slips I've been checking my mail box everyday waiting for my slip to go out so I can start toward finding a job, but no slip ever showed up at my house. Every time I went to go get the mail, I was a ball of nerves. I was sweating, my hands were shaking and I just didn't want to know anymore. So over the weekend, I tried my best to do everything I could keep myself busy and not think/stress about the pink slip. I knitted, I sewed, I quilted, I cleaned but most of all I avoided the tv news. Today I got to work at my usual time, got settled, started working, and about 30 min's later my first co-worker arrived. Of course she wanted to know what the status was and did I get a pink slip yet. Then she starts telling me how she knows someone that knows someone in Personnel and that pink slips went to people with only 27 months of service or less! I currently have 34 months!

I've been saved from the chopping block! For now. I'm thrilled with my good news and really needed it. I've been a mess for days and even Hubbs was getting to the end of his rope with my jumpy, nervous behavior. Now I can go home tonight with a smile on my face and enjoy my evening. Since there isn't a way to check for sure that you're not on the list, I'm just going to have to hope that c0-workers information is correct!

February 21, 2009

I finished another pair of socks! I frogged the last pair I started and chose Cable Rib Socks by Erica Alexander from Favorite Socks, 25 Timeless Designs from Interweave. Started these on Valentines day and finished today! Sorry for the not so great picture, but I've packed them up to be sent off to my older sister.

Last month I also finished my new small knitting bag. I've made two other bags from this same pattern but never got around to making one for myself. I cut it out before Christmas and finally got it sewed up at the end of January. I kept meaning to share but just never seemed to get to it.

I also finished the Confetti Stars that I started last weekend. Of course it still needs to be quilted, but the top is done! Guess now I need to get down to quilting some stuff.

February 13, 2009

Caution: Picture Heavy Post
Wednesday on my way home from work I saw the most bright and beautiful rainbow. I know it's not the best picture with all the wires in the way but what do you want for a picture taken through the windshield of my car?

For my birthday my Grammie and my sister came over. I had to grab this picture of my dog snuggling with my Grammie. I had to crack up watching him try to get all the love he could possibly soak up in one day.

I'd been working on these place mats and table runner for my in-laws. I was able to finish them last weekend before my in-laws came over for dinner on Sunday. I finished quilting them on Saturday at noon and then spent the next 7 hours getting the binding done. I'm sure I could have done it in less time but since I was under the weather a bit, I'm using that as my excuse. I used a pattern called Lumiere by Pressed for Time Quiltworks. Most of the fabric was from my stash.

Yesterday, I spent the majority of the morning cleaning the house from top to bottom. It hadn't been done in almost two weeks and it needed it. Poor kitty really needed her box cleaned. But once that was done I was able to work on quilting with no guilt at all. I chose the above fabric's over a year a go and just hadn't had the time to work on the project. I got it all cut out and pieced the entire top in just one afternoon. It's 34.5" square and is a Quilt-in-a-Day pattern called Shining Stars by Patricia Knoechel.

Of course there is no quilting done unless there's a kitty in the middle of your fabric.
Finished! I started working on this around 1pm and finished about 6. The picture really doesn't do the colors much justice but it turned out really good.

Since I finished Shining Stars I need something new to sew. A couple of Christmases ago my mom gave me this really nice kit with 30's reproductions in it. It came with a pattern From Atkinson Designs called Confetti Stars. Again, I hadn't started this one either because I just did not have the time but since I just got my machine back from being cleaned, I figure now is a good time to sew the heck outta out it! I washed the fabric last night and pressed it this morning. I'm planning on doing the cutting today.

Now, I know you're dying to know how my knitting's been going. I'd been working on a pair of socks for the Sock Knitters Anonymous group on Ravelry. I finished them on Wednesday and still need to post up my results in the group.

So with Brigit done, I need a new sock project to work on while I'm watching TV. I tried watching TV without anything to do and it was only about 10 min's before I was on Ravelry looking for another sock pattern.

I found Naive Socks (This Must Be The Socks) by SpillyJane. I'm using Patons Kroy Socks Stripes.

So that's it for now. I'm off to the sewing room to start on Confetti Stars! Hopefully I'll get plenty done while Hubbs is at work today.

February 11, 2009

Good news! The sewing machine repair place called yesterday and I was able to pick up my machine after work yesterday. Hubbs called me to let me know it was ready and they were open until 6:30. Well, it turns out they're only open until 6 and I don't get off work until 5:30 but I barely made it in the store before they locked the door. Cost me $85 but it was well worth it. There was nothing wrong with my machine but it hadn't been serviced since I got it three years ago and I know I was pushing the threshold for something going wrong with it by not having it serviced yearly. I know I should have but what can I can say? I'm cheap and I hate to have things "fixed" when there is nothing wrong with them. Kinda like taking the pets to the vet. I hate doing that too, but the county requires that I have them vaccinated for rabies. Stupid rabies.

With the holiday tomorrow (Lincolns Birthday), Friday's my regular day off and Monday also a holiday (Washington's Birthday), this weekend is a 5 day weekend for me. Unfortunately, Hubbs has to work the rest of this week and is on call this weekend, so there won't be much of anything going on this weekend at casa de Stitch. A friend had suggested that we all go camping this weekend but Hubbs parents are using the 5th wheel this weekend and Hubbs being on call, it was just a no go. I really would have liked to go and get outta town for a couple of days but this time it just wasn't going to happen. But since I just got my machine back, I guess I can start working on a couple of quilting projects that I have all the "parts" for.

Over the summer my mom, sister and grandmother went up to Tahoe to visit a friend of my mom's that has a summer place up there. Being that almost everyone in my family quilts and my mom's friend quilts too, they went off to visit a couple of local quilt shops in the area. My mom is sooo good to me and she picked me out a charm squares pack and a pattern for a table runner. The fabric is coffee themed and in case I haven't mentioned it in the past, I LOVE coffee. If I had my way, I'd have a coffee IV 24/7. I think I'll start with this and see what other kind of trouble I can get into.

I'm sure in addition to the sewing, I'll be working on finishing my sock for the February Sock Down. I belong to Sock Knitter Anonymous on Ravelry, each month they have a challenge where you can knit different types of socks. This month is Socks for a Charity/Cause or Entrelac or Gigi Silva. I chose Brigit by Monkey Toes (you can find it on Ravelry here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/brigit). I finished the first sock last week and am working on the second one now. I'm almost finished with the foot and should be starting the toe either tonight or tomorrow. I should post some pictures this weekend.

Once I finish my Brigit, I'm planning on casting on for my Central Park Hoodie (http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/central-park-hoodie). My Grammie gave me enough yarn to do this project in a beatiful gray. I dont' have the details of the yarn with me and I haven't added to my stash on Ravelry, but I'll be sure to post it up as soon as I can. Grammies Friend owens a yarn shop in Calistoga, CA, she helped Grammie pick out the yarn and I'm really looking forward to working with it.

So that's it for now. I hope everyone has a great day and a nice weekend too!

February 10, 2009

Sorry folks, not much to report after this last weekend. I have been quilting and knitting but I've been fighting a sinus thing and haven't taken many pictures.

Yesterday was my birthday and spent most of it face down on the couch passed out cold. I did get up long enough to take my sewing machine to be serviced. I got it for my 30th birthday three years ago and haven't taken it to be serviced even once. I figured it was time and since I finally finished the table runner (I'll post pictures of it later) and the place mats I was working on for the In-laws car club I didn't have anything else that had to be done right away. I can't wait to get it back so I can go back to sewing. I have a ton of half finished projects that need some attention. But in the mean time, I guess I can just concentrate on knitting.

I'll try to post pictures of my quilting, knitting and birthday gifts later this week. Hope every one's weekend was a good one!

February 3, 2009

Note to self:

Don't read foodie blogs when you're hungry. I'm pretty sure I've gained twenty pounds just from looking at pictures of food! And now I'm dying for the weekend to get here so I can stay home and bake bread, cakes, cookies, & cupcakes not to mention a roasted chicken or some chili!!