Thursday, August 27, 2015

Wednesday Yarn Along plus a Malabrigo trunk show

My knitting has kind of taken a hit because my summer has been a bit crazy. I have knitted here and there, and while I am sad to admit neither of my shawls will be ready for when I go back to class next week, I have been working on other goodies instead.

Last Friday our LYS held a Malabrigo trunk show! Malabrigo was in the area (my town, actually!) taking pictures for an upcoming yarn/book release. Having never attended a yarn trunk show before, Mom and I felt the need to go and "taste" the yarns.

We each brought home little cakes of two different yarns and instructions to knit garter stitch until it was gone. The shop owner is then going to piece it all together and the result, a lap blanket, is going to be gifted to someone in a local nursing home. How cool is that?!

Of course there were door prizes and gifts for those who purchased the most Malabrigo yarn in a week period. Mom won the 2nd prize (she bought yarn for two sweaters) and I won a door prize, both of which we picked up today when we finished our knitting swatches.

Mom is knitting socks for everyone this year. 

My swatch is the lighter color whereas Mom knit the blue (of course she did!). 

I wish we had gotten the name of the yarns (we forgot both times we were at the yarn shop), but I am sure we can find out the next time we go!

Enough yarn for a shawl and wristers! Mom's prize.

Red yarn? Hello! You know me so well! 

I intended to start reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks long before this week, but again, lots going on. This is a required book for one of my classes this fall so I figured I'd get a jump start on it. So far I'm really enjoying it.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Summer days.. drifting away..

I had intended on writing quite a few blog entries this summer. I even planned on doing quite the blog update when I took that week off earlier this month from work. Clearly it never happened. Even when I wasn't supposed to be busy, I was.

Next week I return back to school. Next week is also September. So where has summer gone?

I think I have spent most of my summer working. I'll be completely honest when I say that I was truly beginning to hate my job and hate what my job was doing to me. I tend to think I am a pretty tough person, and what I originally was hired to do is not hard work. But it all comes down to a numbers game. Enrollment is down and they need it up so last minute plans are made on how to get those numbers back up. A hiring freeze was put in place so despite my department working short-staffed, no new bodies could come in (we're going to be down two people next week, plus someone else is out for surgery). All of the part time staff were given "unlimited" hours to work. By the time I took my week off, I was pushing nearly 50 hours one week (Oh plus I was moonlighting in a different department).

But yes. I took the busiest non-school related week off: UA week. There were over 2,000 UA workers on campus for a week in August (it happens every year), and I didn't want any part of it. So I took the time off, unpaid of course, and stayed at home. Of course while at home I had one full day to do nothing (Chase and I rearranged the living room, twice), and then I was running errands and going to appointments. Chase started at a new school this year so he had orientations to attend. Yeti turned six months old two weeks ago and so she had a vet appointment scheduled to be fixed. Mom had made appointments with her doctor months ago for her six month check-ups, so we had that going on. Oh, and not only did Chase has those orientations to attend, but his new school went back on August 17th so there was the back to school rush to do earlier than usual.

Yeti, the day she was fixed and one day shy of her 6 month birthday.

Because a Pyr wearing a Cone of Shame is extremely amusing (if even just to the humans). 

Busy. Busy. Busy. Exhausting.

There have been nights when I have come home from work, laid down on my bed, and cried. I love helping students, I think I'm good at my job, but they are so desperate here that things were changing not daily, but hourly and it's hard to keep up with what we can and can't do now. They also decided to extend our office hours through the month of August so I work 8 hours on Saturday (but don't get a lunch break). I'm really glad that this is the last week of that.

Not to mention that Steve has spent a good portion of his summer working away from home. He comes home for about 24-36 hours and this then gone again. He's actually home for the next few days, and he is hoping when he calls for jury duty on Sunday, they will pick him Monday for a trial that will keep him home for a week. Ever hear of people praying to serve jury duty before? Yep, he's cracking, too.

And Chase lost out on his summer, too. He worked as a CIT (counselor in training) for Cub Scout camp, went on numerous camping trips, and then spent a week at summer camp himself. He only had 2 weeks when he came back from camp to spend with his friends before he was back at school.

So far, Chase is loving his new school. We ran into a hiccup during the first week that stemmed from the bullying he went through at his old school last year (it apparently was far worse and went on a lot longer than Steve and I were aware of), but his new school has made it perfectly clear to him that they are there for him and support him in every way they can. I love his new school. They are currently the only IB (international baccalaureate) school in the area (though rumor has it Ann Arbor is getting one this year, too) and everything I have seen so far makes me just love them so much. Plus, it helps that Chase knows 9 Scouts that are in the combined middle/high school. I hope for great things for him this year.

He really doesn't look like a 13 year old heading off to 8th grade!

There are a few highlights coming up this fall that I think will help with everything. In less than a month, Mom and I heading up north to the Traverse City area to participate in their yarn crawl. We are so looking forward to this little vacation! It's a girls only trip that we hope to fill with yarn, wine, chocolate, and just peace away from home. 

Steve and I also going away for a couple of days in late October when my school-school (not my work-school) has a fall break. I'm looking forward to going to Lake Michigan and just spending some one-on-one time with my husband. He definitely deserves a break from the grind.

So I guess this was quite the informational dump. I am still around, I do still plan on trying to update more frequently, and I am reading (and trying to post) everyone (I can at least sneak in a peek here and there while at work!).