Sunday, August 20, 2017

So much going on

We have entered "crazy time" at work.  Our fiscal year ends September 30th, so you'd think it would be smooth sailing for the next 6 weeks as everything is winding down.  Unfortunately, no.  I work for the Federal government and our budget process hasn't worked in years, so instead of having our money on October 1st so we can spread things out over the year, we get continuing resolutions.  They basically give us a percentage of our funds which keeps us going, but doesn't allow us to fully implement anything.  We got the last chunk of money in mid-June and have just recently received the okay to spend it, so we're now trying to fit 12 months of training sessions into about 6 weeks.  I'll be out of the office 3 of the next 6 weeks and I'm lucky as there are several folks who are out all 6.  All that to say that time to stitch is going to be at a premium until October 1st (when it's possible there will be a shutdown as Congress hasn't passed a budget or any spending bills yet).

I came home from my Philadelphia trip to a broken air conditioner.  We did get a repairman out on Friday but he had to order parts and they won't be in until tomorrow.  The Hubs thinks that a bigger part may have been damaged but we won't know until they get the little one fixed.  If the big part is damaged it will probably be another week before they can get a replacement as the unit is on the old side.  Fortunately, we have a portable air conditioner that we're using to keep one room cool.  The rest of the house isn't horrible but it's not terribly comfortable either (Virginia in August is not known for its temperate weather - it's 92 right now outside and we've managed to keep the inside temperature at about 84).  My stitching is in one of the not air conditioned rooms so not a lot is getting done.  I've found a couple smaller pieces that I could stitch in hand, so may start them.

All is not lost on the stitching side of things and I do have a 
post.  Gifted Gorgeousness is hosted by Jo at Serendipitous Stitching.  It allows us to say "Thank you" to someone that has gifted us stitching goodness, to show things that we are stitching as gifts or anything we can shoehorn into the definition of "gift".  The one piece that I have stitched on this month is "A Glimpse of Santa" which is a gift for my niece.

I haven't much vacation time this year, but given how much is left on this piece, I am thinking about taking a few days off to just sit and stitch.

Hoping for a bit of relief from the heat, we went to Virginia Beach to visit our boat (it was nice, but not much relief) and saw this being towed:

It's hard to tell from the picture, but it's a restaurant.  As I mentioned, we were off Virginia Beach and these folks were coming from the Eastern Shore so at this point they had towed this 10 to 15 miles. Oh yeah, we saw a bunch of dolphins and pelicans too.

And for those of you in the US that have no media access there's a solar eclipse tomorrow.  My little corner of Virginia is not in the totality area but we are supposed to get to about 85%.  I did see the total eclipse that went up the east coast in 1970 and would love to see another one, but the area closest to us will be ridiculously packed, so we're staying home.  I have had no luck finding official eclipse glasses, so am going low tech to see it:

It's a pin hole projector/camera/viewer.  There a piece of white paper on the inside bottom of my fancy box (no affiliation with Trader Joe's, just a happy customer), a hole in the aluminum foil there on the left (if you look to the left of the wrinkle you can see it) and the viewing hole on the right.  If you'd like to make your own viewer, the directions are here.

I have not been doing much on the computer and am behind on blog reading and commenting - I may just have to say "from this day forward" as I don't know if I can go back a month and catch up on everything you all are doing.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Huh... I lost an entire month

Huh...  Yep, that's all I can think to say about the lost month of July and it started out with so much promise.  We welcomed a new niece to the family:

(not the picture you were expecting?)  To be fair, Michelle has been part of the family for a while, she and Alex started dating their Sophomore year of high school (or thereabouts), they've just made it official. 

Right after Alex's wedding, my niece finalized the papers for the favors for her wedding in October.  I spent the next couple weekends cutting out the bits and parts for 20 of these (200 individual boxes):


My niece is not fond of cake so she is having pie at her reception and these little boxes tied in perfectly (at least they did after we made a few modifications - like adding the "crust" pieces.  Her fiancĂ©'s favorite pie is coconut cream (above) and she decided on cherry.  She found some very cute red paper with lighter red dots for her pies, I just didn't have any finished when I was taking pictures.  The 2 is the table number and they have decided on lottery tickets and lucky (hopefully for someone) pennies to go inside as the gifts.  I was in Michigan last weekend for a family reunion and then a day of folding and gluing to get the pies all finished.  Both nieces, both Grandmothers, my sister and I worked on these so truly a family affair (or gathering of Goddesses whichever works for you).
In between the wedding and the pie-ing, well, you'd think I would be stitching my not so little fingers off as I need to finish my new niece's Christmas stocking, but no - I haven't picked up a needle since my last post.  The Hubs had a medical mess that took up the time between the wedding and the pie-ing/reunion.  He was scheduled to have surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff; unfortunately, on the day of surgery, his blood pressure was sky high (at one point during the day it went up to 199/148).  Instead of recuperating from surgery, he spent the next six days in the hospital (3 of them in ICU) trying to get his blood pressure under control and deal with the underlying health issue. It's been rounds of appointments and follow-ups since he was released and I have been too worn out to focus on stitching.  He has an appointment with the surgeon on Wednesday to see about rescheduling the surgery. 
In the 30+ years I have been stitching, this is the longest I have gone without picking up a needle.  Because of all the other stuff going on, I can't say I missed it, but I am ready to get back to it and normal.  I am almost caught up with all the things that were sidelined (sooo much laundry), so maybe, just maybe, tomorrow will see some Xs put in fabric.