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Greet of Phoenix Glade
10 December 2009 @ 03:23 pm
I am stunned how fast the parenting thing has rooted into the pit of my stomach. Not stunned how rewarding it is.

Major happy moment last night: Despite feeling as if she wasn't good enough over the weekend, L trotted up to guidance and checked on test packets, bringing the ACT registration one home. "The SAT packet isn't available yet." T told me this, and it was all I could do to not go crow to mom about it.

I suppose test prep is part of our world this spring. Anybody got any recent advice? The school newsletter is full of URLs to check, but of course I'm not there yet. Come January, etc.

In the meantime, the box pile is in that lovely stage where one is just tossing things together by size...except that I still have two more weeks of December to get through, with much busyness on the FWB end for holidays and the ex clearing the old house. In anxiety, I am completing the warping that I started before Pennsic - the purple and lavender diamond twill. I'm about half through threading heddles, and should get it done today.
Greet of Phoenix Glade
07 December 2009 @ 02:54 pm
So I'm really happy. Really really happy. If I had written a wishlist, I wouldn't have done this well.

The house is practically perfect...even to the amount of improvement that is still left to do on a Craftsman cottage. It's brick, with a full front porch that wraps around one side. On the other side is a porte-cochere with a side door through the butler's pantry. YEAH. There's window seats and a place for a porch hammock and built-in cabinets and nearly enough storage, once I bring my furniture. (Hanging clothes space for me is an issue, but I would feel bored if there was nothing for me to solve!)

The living room and dining room are widely open to each other, but there's doors. Hardwood floors throughout. A sunny breakfast room and kitchen convenient to the converted back porch office and master bedroom. A giant dining table in the right sized dining room for projects or parties. A fireplace that has been temporarily stopped, but able to be put back into use fairly easily. And a shotgun hall, perfect as a cat toy bowling alley! though we're choosing pictures to hang there as a gallery.

I even love the decoration that's been done so far - it goes very well with my things, which include a lot of art and some antiques from the age of the house. Again, this is just EASY. What bus of orphans did I save?

I like his mother, and his daughter and I have already bonded (must go take a nap before she gets home from school). The cat is a lovey and silly Turkish Angora - just gorgeous. I have chased him around on the slippery floors - he slides wonderfully.

The herb garden continues wonderfully despite the chill, and I look forward to making additions in the spring. Roses along the back fences. I shall plant daffodil bulbs next fall...I've never been able to have my own before.

I've spent a good deal of today shelving books and setting up systems, cleaning kitchen things (dishwasher and I are fast friends), and figuring out where things are in the town. It's going to take me all of January to get really acclimated, I think, but it's SO good to be here, making progress.
Greet of Phoenix Glade
03 December 2009 @ 05:49 pm
My car is packed with the second load of stuff going up to therandver 's house. Boxes are ID'ed for the third load - he'll be here next weekend, for Yule, and I can send him back with stuff. We'll do the last trip together - he's coming down for New Year's with more carrying capacity, and we can bring the rest of my furniture and boxes then.

I'm going to Decatur tomorrow - to see the house, to meet his daughter and his mother, to look about the place to figure out what I'm going to do with myself next. This means I am blowing off Magna Faire for mundane life. Yeah, we're pretty serious. And it's awesome. Words fail.

While I am gone, mom's bathroom renovation will begin, without me, so I've cleared the mudroom of all the DIY storage that has lived there, and the bath/laundry of nearly everything - I've left a little for mom to do...wouldn't want her to feel left out. (grin) It will be very exciting - the door is moving, the machines, toilet, sink and shower are all shifting, which means trenching through the slab! (also known as traumatically loud blind poking. I bet dog and cat are going to be REALLY glad to have me back next week.)

I realized yesterday, when responding to madrun 's A&S pondering about her choli entry, two important things.

1) Moving and assuming new roles, etc, is far more stressful than I expected, even though I really want it with everything I am. Change is hard. I didn't expect this for me, since I regularly take on huge amounts of work that fluxes, and am constantly bouncing from one activity to another. Apparently I like my roles to stay put. Hopefully this one will. (crossed everything and giggle-squeak)

2) I am soooo burnt out on A&S right now, a victim of my own expectations. Which is really too bad. I want to make stuff...I've finished knitting a hat, one sock (of a pair for me, to remember how) and am fairly far on the first sock of a pair for R. I have gauge worked out for a very interesting dressy summer tank for me, and materials for an orange sweater (yeah, darlin', the same sort of orange) that I hope to have done in time to wear during this winter. I have a bunch of garb cut out for me, and materials for clothing for mom, and materials that will be Randver- and Lindsay-wear. But I want to find that 'flow' mindset with them...

I'm not sure how much of this is needed for Gulf Wars - I want to put heads together with R and decide what is priority, because I'm particularly tired of rushing my production in twelve directions at once. (Plodding in eleven directions and working-with-purpose in one is okay.) It's time to work intelligently, instead of merely enthusiastically. And I want to work on my EP armor: stitch my lamellar together, work on the other pieces, make a helmet.

It feels very odd to be physically so close to an A&S event, and yet deliberately not choose to go. I recognize that part of this is the new luxury of simply being within 4 hours driving distance of an event most weekends. (God, you are spoiling me, but I promise to be responsible with this new power. Please help.) Part of it is choosing to be involved in more things than A&S. Part of it is serious life-retooling time.

But the structure that is A&S - the fair, the classes...I've lost my mojo. I still have lots of ideas that I want to pursue, but I guess it's okay to rest now.
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01 December 2009 @ 11:57 am
Well, my horoscope threatened a higher level of mental organization today, so perhaps that's why I managed to remember FLYlady.

For those impressed with my productivity, who have picked up my use of timers, etc...this is where I learned to do that, from about 2001-2006.
I left then because I needed to focus on things that FLYlady didn't seem to address. I am glad to remember it now, when all could so easily go to chaos, and yet it is one of the sweetest holiday seasons I can remember. I want to *enjoy* this time.

I don't want it marred by financial mistakes, emotional snapping, wasted time hunting for things, and missed opportunities. So, just sayin' - probably not for everyone, but I like it.

Back to the boxes.
Greet of Phoenix Glade
30 November 2009 @ 05:29 pm
This moving business, at the holidays, with everything else that's going right in my life...well, it's all exhausting, and I'm just not going to manage being a good correspondent for a bit.

Thanksgiving was lowkey, just my extended family, with a few missing who live far away. My aunt is an amazing cook, and has shared her recipes with many of us, particularly me. It was great to eat her dishes having recently reviewed the recipes, so I really understood what I was eating. Now they will be mine, all mine!

Went visiting in Georgia, and had a fabulous time with therandver , thorabell , et al at a fun costume party. Terrific efforts by just about everyone - so much fun to play with costumes that aren't SCA for a change. R and I really like wearing the late 1800's stuff. We'll hold onto these things for a while.

I picked up the last of my belongings from storage, and finally I have all my stuff in one place, and can sort and cull to my satisfaction. I have an awful lot of kitchen boxes. Possibly more than the fabric/yarn boxes. Which rival the book boxes. I'll run a load up this weekend, and look about the place to see how the land lies.

Greet of Phoenix Glade
The advice to subscribe to steampunk groups here on LJ was REALLY GOOD. I like steamfashion in particular - many pictures and general crowdsourcing. Good stuff.

I still haven't found my mystery word. It isn't "underbust" and it isn't "bustier"..."bust" is no part of it. I've been reading various online fashion glossaries, all of which purport to be comprehensive, and yet somehow have little overlap. Figures. I'm going to get down an old dictionary at this rate, it's driving me nuts. An important part of the context is that this "boned bodice from historical fashion typically matched the skirt, and was worn over a blouse". Think Rene Russo's first outfit in Thomas Crowne Affair (though my memory isn't clear; I think that was just a fabric change on the blouse). Argh.

I'm in box hell again - picked up another carful from FWB again yesterday, and need to spend many hours culling through and repacking. Now that I have some idea of what my life might be like (or at least, the values/material to work with), I can make some decisions...though I fear I'm going to bombard T with lists of "should I keep this"?

I think I only have two more cars' worth to pull from FWB - though honestly if D decides not to take the citrus with him, and there's gardening tools, etc, too...it could be more. And messier more.

It's time to start cooking for holidays - D sent me home with a box of native persimmons from the empty lot next door, and what T&I think are key limes, though they are the yellowest key limes I've ever seen. The Meyers aren't ready yet - and there aren't enough key limes for a pie, so I think I'll do the preserved lemon treatment on the limes.

I continue to be way behind on blogging - I have so much starred and needing review and sorting. FSD in particular continues to be a problem child - though the Substantial Completion inspection of the Wilson Medical Building went well yesterday, and I'm incredibly pleased with how the sow's ear managed to be repurposed as at least a very nice purse. More detail on that elsewhere, when I manage to catch up.
Greet of Phoenix Glade
19 November 2009 @ 01:16 pm
One of the things that therandver and I have fun with is the serious enabling that goes on between us on our various interests, which are hugely complementary. I've been asked to come up with something steampunkish for D-C next summer, to go with a 'crewmember of one of Her Majesty's Airships', and I'm feeling simultaneously spoiled and challenged, and I want y'all's help.

On the one hand, this is Easy. I almost don't have to sew. I have a walking skirt, and a matching fitted blazer, and a lovely old luggage hatbox, and a collection of hats, and as anyone who knows me in person knows...the hair to manage the Gibson Girl hairstyle to pull that off. I even have multiple choices of shoes.

Furthermore, this could be Productive and Fun. I've been wanting another reproduction corset - I've done a Civil War one, but I want also the Edwardian S-curve one. I have also wanted one of the lingerie tea dresses (look here) for ages, and I've done lace insertion, so I think I can manage that. I also want to make this skirt, just to have.

The issue that is Challenging is this, and I want help from pinkpelican1 , eeyore_sings , and anyone else listening:

I am not punk, in the teased hair and extreme eye shadow sense. I will never be punk. I can't pull it off. I open my mouth, or unwittingly make an expression, and the effect is ruined.

One story I've come up with, that matches the NotPunkness of my personality casting, is "arranged passage on airship without knowing what she was getting into." Which is actually pretty accurate, given the company I plan to be keeping. (Grin. Love you guys.)

I asked some not-so-much SCA friends about this, and the guys recc'd "something warm, but a safety line hooked round a corset would be a good idea" and "goggles and your own telescope". Check. I can do that.

I am thinking I ought to make the corset anyway, soon, so that I can judge if the stuff I have works.

HOWEVER. Here's an alternate story line: "Girl Engineer". (I have a new engineer's hat.) This might be a way to get the 'punk' and some more technology into the idea. I don't have to fool with putting my hair up (won't fit under the hat). I could wear PANTS. You know, full-cut ones, as if I made over a man's to fit me. I can still do the corset, but over a shirt, and more as jerryrigged safety harness gear. (not related quite, but what is a boned bodice worn over clothing called, there's a particular name and darned if it won't come off the tip of my tongue...)

The more I think about this, the more I like it. The first idea is nice, but it's too historical for the notion of steampunk, I think. Hey, I can smudge my face, even. Fun.
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17 November 2009 @ 12:30 pm
(my life coach would say, celebrate! yes, yes, going out to dinner.)

But seriously, I've got a huge to-do list started, and it's barely begun, really. I need to think about:

Updating job search efforts with the new LEED credential, and what I learned from pursuing it. - This means new cover letters, and a new resume version. Also means, "what is it like to practice architecture in AL?" Internet research.
How to move my stuff from at least three locations to one location, over four trips. - I think I won't really understand this until the second stuff moving opportunity, when I get to go up and see for myself what to expect.
What is Decatur like, in particular? I've been there a couple of times before, so I have a clue, but I need to research particulars. - Somewhat on the web, and much more when I get there.
And upcoming events, and Christmas.

Mom reminds me that I owe her some garb. I guess that's what I'm doing next. After the resume update.

EDIT: And some yoga! I have absolutely turned into a slug over the past few weeks, I'm definitely weaker, and my back hurts in that sedentary way that presages a miserable fifth and sixth decade. Four o'clock, I'm getting sweaty.
Greet of Phoenix Glade
13 November 2009 @ 09:27 am
So it seems arranged that I'll be moving to N. AL "in the New Year"...actual date not yet set, since mom's b'day is the 2nd, and I'm not going to ditch her right on the day if I can help it.  (Just checked - it's a Saturday.  Helpful, that.)

I am valiantly trying to stay on task, listening to my mp3s.  They are helping - my second practice exam score was passing, though of course I'm not satisfied with that, I want to be *more sure* of passing.  But it's a challenge in meditation to keep my attention on my ears and not be mentally packing.  The knitting helps - I'm nearly done with the first holiday item - which will go to its recipient around Feast of St. Nicholas.

I am way way way behind on blog maintenance, need to tidy/pack the garage, etc...whoa, stop.  Back to non-Pod, teapot, needles.
Greet of Phoenix Glade
 My perception of my life and what I want to do with it is changing so fast, I can't keep up.  I took a social media webinar today, and the ideas just poured out of the ether onto my page - and I know a lot from the presentation went over my head, I should retake it after my exam.

What I've been up to in the past few years, things I like to think about, values that are important to me...all these things are refolding into new opportunities, and my possible task list hasn't exploded like this in years.  Possibly not ever.  I have so many ideas that are clearly the second draft, or recombination, of first ideas, it's terribly exciting.  ("I've learned something!  It was worth it!")

It makes a difference that:  I've set up and run a business before.  I've set up a household before.  I've moved cities before.  I've figured out local networks before.  Taking the risk scares me, but I keep reminding myself of all the lovely parachutes I have, in all the people who care about me.  Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

I'm rather glad that I have the LEED exam in a week, and get to focus squarely on that, otherwise I'd need help to keep my head from spinning.  Interesting that my seriously-lapsed interest in knitting is Back.  (I've picked up an abandoned pair of socks for listening to study materials, and am eyeing Norah Gaughan designs with fantastically creative geometric construction methods.)