Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Happy Dance with Me! :)

Chatelaine's Sampler Mystery II, stitched on 36ct flax Edinburgh linen from Silkweaver. I used all the recommended silks except for the Silk n Colors Chartruese. I subbed GAST corn husk for that and I think it came out beautiful. :) I left off the beads in the outer border as I didn't think the coppery beads really complimented the pink and blue/purpler flowers much. I also inadvertently left off some backstitch on the leaves in the center planter, but after discovering it decided I liked it the way it was and didn't go back and add the backstitch. Otherwise the piece is done as charted, and I'm very happy with how it came out. This will be my entry for the large category at the fair this year, so I'm happy it is finished. Now to finish Emma's Garden, which will be entered in one of the smaller categories. :)

Monday, June 26, 2006

Random Happenings

  • Finished the cross stitching on Chatalaine's Sampler Mystery II last night - now to do the beading, which isn't much, and frame. Picture within the next few days. :)
  • Katie has an ear infection - most likely the same ear infection she had a few weeks ago when we were all so sick. She had an antibiotic to clear it up then, but apparently it just got better for a bit and now it is back and so are the antibiotics. Hrmph.
  • Alex had his first orthodontist appt last week. Luckily, the dentist thinks we should wait another 6 months or a year for his mouth to grow a bit on its own before intervening with braces. Will definitely need braces in some form though in the future. There just will not be enough room in his upper jaw for all those teeth. At least our finances have a bit more time to prepare for the expense of braces as we are still paying back debt from when I wasn't working. (Only a little bit left now though - yay!)
  • Speaking of Alex, he is now as tall as my nose! This is very disconcerting, it reminds me that in just over two years he will be a teenager! I am way too young to have a teenager for a son! And besides, didn't he just learn to cross the street and ride a bike? Oh yeah, that was like 5 - 6 years ago. I feel really good about him though and how he is turning out so far - such a great kid. Crossing my fingers that the teenage years don't change that!
  • Katie has learned her last name at school. I was pushing her in the stroller the other day and said something like "That's my Katie" to her and she shouted, "Katie (last name), mama." A day or two later she heard me refer to her brother as "Alex (last name)" and she got all indignant. "No mama, my (last name), Katie (last name)." Sean thinks this is hilarious and eggs her on, saying Daddy (last name) and she'll get all mad and yell that it is "My (last name)". Pretty funny
  • A large limb of our tree just fell off about a week ago. It was raining a bit, and I discovered it when I came home from work so I wondered if it had stormed more at home than it did where I work during the day. Turned out when I had a tree trimming service come to cut up the branches and take them away that the tree is rotting on the inside. :( It is a beautiful tree too, but will eventually have to come down.
  • I think I'm going to start actively looking for a new job. I'm worried that my lack of placement at this one is eventually going to bite me, so better to start looking for prospects on my own instead of waiting for an ax to fall. I'm a bit anxious about it, but at least I still have a paycheck coming in for now.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Foldable Books RR

This is what I stitched for Autumn's Foldable book Round Robin. The large design on the left will be made into one of the four "faces" of the book, and the two smaller designs on the right will become the scissor fob. Autumn included Silk n Threads varigated thread to do the main color in and then we got to pick the coordinating colors for the rest of the design. On the book face I chose Minnimura MT 220 a hand-dyed Australian thread for the stems of the flowers and then used a pretty pink silk thread from a Dinky Dyes Oops pack. For the scissor fobs I used all Silk Mori thread from Kreinit, except of course for the thread that Autumn provided. I think they came out well.

In other news Katie is sick AGAIN. I know the first year at daycare/school is bad for all kids with getting illnesses and building up their immune system and such but Geesh! I'm ready for a break. I'm home with her today since she has a fever (under control thanks to children's Advil) and she didn't really sleep much last night. She is napping now though, so hopefully she'll be better soon. Of course this means I'll probably spend my weekend and maybe Monday and Tuesday getting over it myself - cause I always catch whatever the kids bring home.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Mira RR Finish

Just finished stitching my section for Debbi's RR. Of course this is part of Mirabilia's Sleeping Beauty. I was really hoping I'd get a chance to stitch her for the round robin. She is just so pretty and she has been in my stash forever, but she is so big and there is always something else calling more loudly. She is also kind of tricky space wise to do for a round robin as most of the sections people put on their RRs were vertical rectangles, so I was really pleased to have this chance to do her in a horizontal rectangle.

Out of all the Round Robins I've participated in so far, I'm really enjoying this one the most - although the stitching for this one usually takes far longer than the other RRs I've participated in. I'm hoping we'll have enough interest to do another round a few months after this one wraps up. My RR went missing, so I really want to do this one again. Despite my frustration with that and one particular member of the RR (who might be responsible for the missing RR), I really enjoy stitching these "snapshots" of Mirabilias. :)

I finished stitcing this early on Saturday, so I had more stitching time to get in a good start on Autumn's Foldable book RR. I had a lot of fun picking out the colors to match her main color and I hope the result looks good. I should have a pic of that up within the next few days. Then it will be on to finish Chatelaine SM2 and some other pieces for the fair. :)

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Bedtime Bathroom Breakthrough

Only my child would have a potty training break through at 2:50 a.m. Yes, a.m. At least I hope it was a break through. She has been using the potty at my prompting since she was about 16 months, but doesn't tell me she has to go very often. Occasionally when she has to poop she will tell me, but never when she has to pee. Anyway, I hope that is changing in light of the middle of the night events last night/this morning.

I woke up at 2:50am to the sound of her crying in her room. Not fussing like she sometimes does right before she drifts back to sleep - but really crying. So I go in there to see what the problem is and she seems like she is crying in her sleep. So I try to cover her back up and tell her it is okay (thinking maybe bad dream?) and I attempt to leave. Whoa! Big mistake mama!

Katie gets out of bed before I reach the door to her room and throughs the biggest tantrum I have seen from her (trust me - this is saying something!). She kicks and screams in place and when I try to pick her up and put her back in bed she throughs herself on the floor still kicking and screaming. I realize something is up and try to get her to talk instead of just scream. Finally I'm able to make out "poopy" in between shrieks. I'm skeptical because she has used this trick in the past to get out of bed when she doesn't have to go but just wants to be out of bed. But she is really upset and I figure it cannot hurt to take her.

Once on the potty she pees for what seems like forever. I wait awhile since she is still wanting to sit on the potty and not go back to bed thinking maybe the "poopy" is still coming. It doesn't after about 10 minutes so I pack her back off to bed without any more fuss from her and she is sleeping almost immediately.

I really hope this means she didn't want to pee in her diaper and wanted to pee on the potty so she wouldn't have to sleep wet. I don't care if she uses the wrong word (poopy instead of pee or potty) as long as she is telling me when she has to go! She started wearing pull-ups this week at home and at daycare and I've been putting her on the potty at lot more at home and they are starting to do it at daycare now too since she is now in the 2 yr old room. We've also had a few trial runs in underwear so that she can feel what it is like to go in her pants and actually be wet. Seems like maybe some of it is sinking in!

DH gets her ready for school in the morning (I leave before the rest of the family is up) and he said that yesterday she kept pulling down her pull up and asking to be put on the potty. Then she wouldn't go. Finally he left her there for about 5 minutes while he was doing some other things in the next room to get ready for work. He heard her say "all done" a few times but didn't think much of it because she sometimes says that immediately after sitting down and lots of times it doesn't really mean anything. When he finally went back in to get her she was standing on her step stool that is in front of the toilet with a big ole turd between her feet on the step stool. "All Done Daddy!" Had to laugh at that one!

Anyway, cross your fingers that we are on our way with the potty training!

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Goody, Goody, Gumdrops

Usually when it is that TOTM, I'm ravanous for chocolate. Not this time. I wanted sugar, pure sugar. Or junk candy made out of little else I should say. Yesterday, I stopped at the gas station and decided to pick up a cold sandwich for lunch. With my sugar craving going full blast I casually walked past the candy aisle vowing to be strong as I picked out my turkey sandwich. Of course, the control was only momentarty as I turned right around and stared longingly for about 10 minutes at all the selections. Finally I caved and picked out some gumdrops. Haven't had them in awhile, thought I might have a few after lunch as a little treat. There were 4 servings in the bag, so I figured I'd keep them in my desk at work and eat them over the next week or two a few at a time. They were 59 cents or 2 for $1.00, so knowing I couldn't pass up a bargain and pay 9 cents more than I needed to for a bag of gumdrops, I had to pick out something else. Nevermind that I was actually paying 41 cents more for more of something I didn't really need in the first place. Tend to block out those kernals of truth during TOTM. So I added a bag of those orange slices that are also made of the sugary gelatin stuff, also four servings.

Yup, you guessed it. Downed both of those bags in one sitting after lunch.
8 servings of gumdrop like goodness. I really did enjoy every minute of it.

Nearly 24 hours later my digestive system is still gurgling in protest. UGH. I know better, I really do. Why, oh why, do I have to give into these cravings when I know how bad it is for me? At least it isn't something I do often. Maybe this little lesson will make it even less often - one can only hope to escape the seduction of the sugary nothingness that is the gumdrop.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Katie No Nap and other Katisms

Just have to document, uh I mean share, a few oddities of my second child. She is such a trip sometimes. :) She seems to decide every few months that she no longer takes naps. Despite the fact that she obviously still really needs the nap. She sleeps in a toddler bed now rather than a crib, but I keep the crib in her room just for nap time so that I can force her to stay in bed. Up til now there was repeated protest during nap time, but she would eventually nap after being cajoled or left to cry a bit in her crib. (Not for hours or anything, just a short time and then she tends to quiet herself.) No longer. She did not nap at all this past weekend. It was really frustrating cause I count on that time to relax and not having it meant I was a bit more frazzled than usual. She spent all of nap time either fussing to get out of the crib or talking to her feet half in English and half in Katie gibberish.

There is an amusing side to this story - since she hasn't been napping she has been really tired the rest of the day, falling asleep in all sorts of odd places. She also refuses to go to bed at night time and ends up hanging on the gate in the doorway to her bedroom instead of staying in her bed. Of course after about 15 min. she is asleep on the gate which is quite hilarious to look at. :) As soon as I notice she's fallen asleep I'll pick her up and put her back in bed, which will usually wake her enough to only get back out of bed and hanging on the gate again. Repeat. About 4-5 times until she is so exhausted she just crys a bit when I put her back in bed cause she is too tired to get up and walk to the gate again. Such a stubborn child.

We are also starting to use time outs with her a bit cause she has started slapping people when she wants something they have or just when she is cranky in general. Poor Alex usually bears the brunt of this when he is trying to keep her busy or entertained. She knows she has to promise to act nice to get out of time out, so when it is time to get up (or way before) she'll start saying "N I C E" in a very drawn out loud way, which is hilarious because it sounds anything but nice. DH, Alex, and I have started saying this to each other when we sense someone is getting annoyed with us. She also seems to think that saying "Pretty Please" pretty much entitles her to whatever it is she wants. We, of course, do not give into these demands, especially when it is to eat chocolate right before dinner, or play in a busy parking lot, but that doesn't stop the shreiks of "Mama! Putty Peese!"

She has also decided she is going to be the next American Idol. She is always singing. Sometimes it is the ABCs (or her version of the ABCs - sometimes every other letter is B - i.e. A, B, C, B, E, F Beeee), sometimes she makes up her own song. On her birthday we took the kids for ice cream and she also had cake - both chocolate. A week later she is still singing a little song she made up herself to the tune of Happy Birthday that goes something like, "Chocolate Birthday.... Katie! Chocolate Birthday..... Katie!" And don't try to sing along with her - ever! She will immediately stop singing and shout - "NO, Katie singing." To which I usually respond by tickling her to death. :) What else can ya do?

Friday, June 02, 2006

"L" is for L O S E R

I didn't get the placement. My manager told me that the client interviewed three other applicants because they didn't feel I was "enthusiastic" about the position at the interview. They ended up taking one of them. I know reading my blog you can tell I wasn't enthused - but I swear I didn't act like that at the interview. I was friendly, polite, and did the best I could to show that I was confident I could do the job. I was even feeling a little bit competitive, so although the placement was never my dream job, I definitely went after it. I suppose my personality isn't bubbly by nature. The woman who first got the position is very much like that - but that just isn't me. I wouldn't have acted that way even if I wanted it so bad it hurt.

I sort of suspect that my firm didn't even want me to get it. It turned out to be only part-time after the first few weeks (something they didn't know going in to the first interview) and since I'm salaried as a full time employee that is time I'd be "benched" and not bringing in money, but couldn't be started on a new placement. I believe the person who did get this placement is a part-time hourly person at my firm, so they were probably promoting her this time around and didn't want to tell me they weren't in my corner. So instead they are trying to blame the failure on me not being "enthused" enough.

Anyway, I'm going to do my best to stop obsessing over it and hopefully another better placement will come up soon. I just hate that the impression everyone seems to be getting is that I wasn't good enough.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Job Angst

Remember that placement I got beat out of a week or two ago? Sounds like I'm not out of the running after all. The woman who got the gig has had some unexpected health issues and is not going to be able to accept the position. My firm has again submitted me for the placement. This is no guarentee that I will get it - there are likely other firms submitting other candidates. Of course this brings me back to not really wanting the position. Also there is no "good feeling" in getting it if I do - because they really wanted the other person anyway. Also even though I had an interview that seemed to go well to me - they want me to resubmit my resume and new writing samples. Maybe I'm reading too much into it - but if they want additional stuff over and above what was submitted before, then they must not have been satisfied with what I had turned in before. All this just has me feeling really insecure - I thought my interview went well and they hired the other person off just the interview - so why the extra scrutiny on me. What's wrong with me? Did I raise some doubt about my qualifications in my interview? I dunno...

It also doesn't help that my last placement was mostly clerical. We have sort of a debreifing after each assignment to determine what we learned, how we can do better, how our skills are improved, etc. During this meeting I tried to tactfully explain to my manager that I'm a professional technical writer, and I really don't want to be on clerical assignments. He was trying to be all reassuring and said something to the effect that he was confident in my skills and that we should have no problem placing someone with 1-2 years experience. ARGH!! I have 5 - 6 years experience. This is my problem - everyone sees me as entry level when I am not! But then, isn't that my fault - how am I projecting that image?? I'm 32 and while I might look a little young, I know I don't exude 22, fresh out of college, anymore. There are two other woman, both also technical writers, both also hired around the same time as me, both within 5 years of my age who seem to get way more respect and proposed for much better placements. At least if I get this placement and do a good job in it and get positive feedback from the client (which I'm completely confident will happen if given the chance!), perhaps I'll have proved myself a bit.

So I guess I reluctantly want the position so that I can flex my muscles a bit - but geesh - why do I have to prove myself and everyone assumes these other people can do the job with no question??