Thursday, March 31, 2011


  • Traffic sucked this morning.  I'm almost always 10 minutes or so late for work.  But thanks to traffic, it was a full 30 minutes today.
  • Why do people go the speed limit or less, but then just do a polite pause (if that) at stop signs? 
  • Bit of a problem with payroll to start the day at work, but we've dealt with it.  Now just waiting to see if our employee-most-likely-to-go-postal will give us a hard time over it.
  • Last night at the gym, I was walking to the treadmill to wipe it down after my run and saw the woman on the treadmill next to me from behind.  She had a rather generous behind and it was moving in multiple directions at once.  Besides the slight fascination with how much it was moving, I thought with horror "Oh My God!  What do I look like from behind!"  Scary thought!
  • My loser neighbors continue to be just that.  How I wish they would move.
  • Last day of light duty for A today.  Yay for me!  No more 5 am wakeups!!
  • I'm almost done with what is perhaps the most ambitious knitting project I have taken on to date.  It is a lace capelet knit in two pieces - the center panel and a border.  Tonight, I will be picking up 448 stitches along the border, then doing a three needle bindoff to join it to the center panel. It will be gorgeous.  Pictures will follow.
  • I've started the log cabin for the niece or nephew to be.  I think it will be beautiful, colorful anyway.  I plan to do six or eight log cabin blocks, then join them.
  • Two weeks to Vegas baby!  Never been - looking forward to it.  Must go through closet and see what fits so I can get packed.
  • I've been without my home computer since Sunday afternoon.  I'm having Facebook Bejeweled withdrawal!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Happiness is...

.....being down 5 pounds.  Yay me.  I'm finally sticking to the diet plan.  I would like to lose a bit more before A and I head to Vegas in 2 1/2 weeks.  We'll see.  I'm on week 3 of the Couch to 5K program.  It's not bad.  A friend told me that week 4 is hard because it's a big jump in how long you run.  So, we'll see how it goes.  I would really like to get up to the point where I can actually run a 5k.  A may even start doing it!  That would be fun.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Feeling Valued....or not

I'm still not feeling good after what happened here at work yesterday.  I'm feeling like I am not valued here.  Clearly, I am not as valued as NS.  I got a real reminder yesterday that I am a public servant, emphasis on the word servant.  Sometimes it really sucks to be reminded that, no matter how high up in the organization you may be, you are still just a peon - which really should be "pee on".  The discussion I had with A last night when I got home was not pleasant.  There was a lot of shouting.  I don't like it when he does things like go after NS and his ilk.  It's a very unattractive side of him.  But I really didn't like being put in the position to ask him to give up his right of free speech to protect my job.  And yeah, the HR director can come in to my office and tell me I'm not in trouble all she wants, but it sure felt like I was in trouble.  It felt like my job was in jeopardy if my husband didn't lay off NS and his buddies.  I should have asked the boss "What if A doesn't lay off?  What then?  Are you going to fire me?"  That would have put him in a spot.  Maybe a spot he needed to be put in to realize that he should never have gotten involved.  He should have told NS that it had nothing to do with my place of employment, that it was between NS & A.  This boss is does not rank up there with the ones I've had the most respect for and now I have less.  And now he's made me feel like I am not valued.  And that has consequences.  Right now, I feel no loyalty to this community, other than what I am paid to have.  I've even looked at other employment opportunities and am seriously considering sending my resume to a nearby employer. And what are they gaining from all this?  NS feels safe?  Good.  His department had asked A to teach a class.  Well, that's not happening.  Not if A is being told he needs to stay away from them, have nothing to do with them.  And he told his best friend what happened yesterday, so guess who else isn't teaching a class for them.  If it weren't for A's involvement, that department would have caused us to spend $500,000 more for a piece of equipment than was necessary.  That department has no qualms about spending money that is not theirs - but let's protect their sensitive egos from big bad A and let's do it by leaning on his wife.  My boss has empowered a bunch of schmoes by what he did and he's tied my hands.  How now am I supposed to deal with them when they want to waste money or put us at risk with poor procedures?
It sucks to have to deal with this.  And I'm hoping that in a bit of time, I'll be feeling better about things.  I really hope so because right now, I'm stuck here.  I can look at other jobs, but with my salary and the pension, I'm really kind of stuck here.

Monday, March 28, 2011

NS is a weanie

I'm sticking with initials because that's my habit, but this time, it's also a little paranoid self-preservation as well.  I'm also even changing his initials slightly to protect the innocent - which is me.  I need to get this out,but I don't want it getting back to the fucking weanie.  NS is a weanie.  He may have a penis (the balls are in doubt) but he is not a man.  NS is a volunteer firefighter where I work and a paid firefighter elsewhere.  He and my husband don't see eye to eye.  NS was sitting in the audience at a meeting a month or so ago, waiting his turn.  He was chatting with other members of his volunteer department and saying how much we say because we don't have a paid department.  That is true.  He was also saying how much his department costs.  Probably also true.  He was going on and on about it.  After the meeting, I mention this to my husband.  Being a true union guy, A was a bit pissed.  Apparently it's a big no-no to promote volunteer departments at the expense of a paid department.  So, A sends NS an e-mail saying "you shouldn't do that and btw, my wife knows people in your union and if you pissed her off enough, she might call them."  Well, guess that didn't go over too well with NS.  It didn't really go over too well with me either.  I've asked A in the past not to rile these guys up - seriously they think they are hot stuff, but they aren't that great and yes, they save us money - but they waste money, so we should really be saving more.  But, whatever.  I can ask A to stay away from them but I can't control him.  So - anyway - weanie NS can't deal with A himself.  Can't call him out, can't face - NS is just not a man.  So - what does NS do?  He calls my boss.  I get called into the boss's office and get asked to control my husband.  NS feels "threatened" by me.  And A doesn't really get that he's at fault here.  He didn't need to call NS out on what he said.  But he feels superior to him.  He is superior to him.  But NS will never recognize that - so what's the point of trying to beat it into him!  And now - I'm sure NS feels all full of himself that he brough me in line because he went to my boss and had me talked to.  Happy Fucking Monday.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Photos as Promised

Here is Colleen's Shetland Triangle.  Both blocked and blocking.  I'll take more when it's dry.  And just so you don't think I posted pictures and didn't include Boomer - take a close look at the second picture - you can see a couple of Boomer hairs made it into the finished product.  Love my dog, but every knitting project ends up with some of his hair on it and it can be a real pain to pull it all out. 

Friday, March 25, 2011

Friday, but no photos?

I promise - photos coming soon.  Maybe tomorrow.  I'm working my butt off on a Shetland Triangle Shawl for a friend of mine.  If you go back to around Sept or Oct of 2009, you'll see the light blue one I made for myself.  This past fall, I wore mine to a fundraiser for the son of my friend.  He was born with a condition that caused one side of his skull to not grow properly.  He was also born without a right ear.  He needs periodic surgery for his skull and recently had surgery to give him an ear.  Much of the cost is outside their insurance coverage, hence the fundraiser.  So - that night when I wore my shawl, my friend said "Oh, I like that.  I want one."  She's been through a lot of crap, including the money raised at that fundraiser being stolen, and she always keeps a real good outlook.  So I wanted to do something nice for her - hence the knitting.  I should have started this back then, but didn't.  I thought about it again when I realized we are going to another fundraiser for her son on Sunday. So, last week, I got some yarn and got cracking.  I am into my 9th and last repeat, then need to do the edging rows. I expect to have it done sometime Saturday afternoon, and will then block it - and take pictures.  Given our good heat and maybe help from a fan, I expect it to be dry and ready to gift on Sunday afternoon.  And may I add - her son is just one of the most amazing kids.  He can have his moments like any kid - but that's the thing - he's got this condition and issues - but he's just a typical 9 year old kid. 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Schweddy Balls

Did I mention Schweddy Balls once upon a time?  Those would be the red velvet cake balls I've made?  To die for!  Over the Christmas holidays, my sister made a version of cake balls with Oreos.  So, for our neighborhood's tailgate party at the local St Patrick's Day parade, I made some Oreo Schweddy Balls.  I used Mint Oreos - did not know they made those until I saw them in the store!  Crush up the Oreos, mix them with an 8 oz package of Cream cheese, softened.  Then you roll the mix into balls. Then you melt chocolate and dip the balls into the chocolate and let cool.  I let the mix chill a bit before rolling them into balls and then again before dipping them - makes them easier to work with.  So good.  So very, very good.  And quite a bit easier than the red velvet version - but that red cake makes those so special.  Anyway - I highly recommend Schweddy Balls.  They are worth the effort.

Happiness is...

....mnemonics - or at least the "Things to be Happy About" blog said so yesterday.  But it made me thing about mnemonics.  I used to use them to memorize.  I would make up my own sentences to remember lists.  Sister Math taught us some good ones for calculus in high school.  SOH CAH TOA!  Sounds like something you would hear in a foreign language film during a fight scene - but it's the formulas for Sine, Cosine and Tangent.    Another was All Seniors Take Calculus.  Going counter-clockwise around the grid, it told you which function was positive in which quadrant.  Then there's "Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge"  (Or Does Fine) for the piano scales.  And a favorite that I think every college kid learns some version of "Liquor before beer, have no fear.  Beer before liquor, never been sicker."

Monday, March 21, 2011

The ABCs of me

I saw this meme on a blog I follow so I decided to do it.

A. Age: 49 for a little while longer

B. Bed size: Queen.

C. Chore you dislike: dusting – hate it.

D. Dogs: only those new to my blog do not know Boomer, aka the Boom Doggie – the cutest, funniest, most loving, pit mix going

E. Essential start to your day: Coffee!F. Favorite color: I don’t really have one. I have favorite colors for different things – like I’ve always wanted a yellow kitchen, but it’s not a color I wear. I like to wear jewel tones and black.

G. Gold or silver: Platinum 

H. Height: 5’6”

I. Instruments you play(ed): I did take piano lessons for a while as an adult, but I’m not sure that qualifies as playing.

J. Job title: Finance Director

K. Kids: None, though it wasn’t for lack of trying.

L. Live: Westchester County, New York State

M. Mom’s name: since I try to only do initials - RAC

N. Nicknames: Kate, Katie, when I was a kid Katiedid

O. Overnight hospital stays: only one, when I was little I was in the hospital for a biopsy of a growth in my mouth

P. Pet peeves: People who type or write the words a & lot together as though they are one word. Also people who get in the left lane and drive slow.

Q. Quote from a movie: Can’t think of any great ones right now except “Luke I am your father” and “Food Fight”.

R. Righty or lefty: Righty.

S. Siblings: One brother, two sisters.

T. Time you wake up: 6:15

U. Underwear: VS Body by Victoria

V. Vegetables you don’t like: Peas, beets, creamed corn. I will not eat cooked carrots, but will eat raw carrots. I’m not fond of green beans, but will eat them.

W.What makes you run late: What doesn’t! Let’s just say I’m late for work more often than I’m on time. But for other events, it’s not a problem.

X. X-rays you’ve had: lungs a few times, wrist and I think that’s it, .

Y. Yummy food you make: Schweddy balls

Z. Zoo animal favorites: I like most all of them – but hate the snake house.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Give me some room!

I'm filling out a form - do lots of that at work.  They need a telephone number.  There are pre-printed brackets for the area code that have only enough space for people who print teensy tiny.  Then tons of room for the other 7 numbers.  What's up with that?  I get things I have to sign that barely have enough room for my first name, let only the rest of it.  And space for e-mail addresses.  Thank heavens they changed our e-mail addresses or they wouldn't fit most of the blocks in which you have to write it.  Another favorite is where you have to fit both your name and title on a line barely big enough for one of them.  Who designs these things?

Top o' the mornin' to ye

And the rest of the day to meself!  One of my high school teachers (Fr Dolan about whom I posted a few months ago) used to say that.  Happy St Patrick's Day all!  9 years ago today, I met A for the very first time.  I had gone to the NYC St Patrick's Day parade with A's cousin and his cousin's girlfriend KM - both co-workers of mine.  A, being in the FDNY, was marching.  Our meeting was very brief, in a bar after the parade and consisted of him saying "Hi I'm A.  Can I get you a beer?"  That was pretty much it.  But, I remembered him well enough that when he visited Town Hall 4 months later and KM said "B's cousin is downstairs, why don't you go say hello"  I made up an excuse to go down to B's office.  And the rest is history.
So - speaking of history - did you know that St. Patrick was not Irish?  Not by birth anyway.  He was Roman, but born in Scotland.  He was kidnapped and taken to Ireland.  He eventually escaped, studied for the priesthood and returned to Ireland to convert the Irish to Christianity.  He used the shamrock to explain the Holy Trinity and is said to have banished snakes from Ireland.  St Patrick's Breastplate is a prayer I love - a little long, so bear with me.
"May the strength of God guide me this day, and may His power preserve me. May the wisdom of God instruct me; the eye of God watch over me; the ear of God hear me; the word of God give sweetness to my speech; the hand of God defend me; and may I follow the way of God.
Christ be with me, Christ before me, Christ be after me, Christ within me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ at my right hand, Christ at my left, Christ in the fort, Christ in the chariot, Christ in the ship, Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me, Christ in the mouth of every man who speaks to me.  Christ in every eye that see me. Christ in every ear that hears me."

Before I go, let me leave you with that Irish toast that everyone knows...

May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields and,
Until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

And another one just because...

May you always have work for your hands to do.
May your pockets hold always a coin or two.
May the sun shine bright on your windowpane.
May the rainbow be certain to follow each rain.
May the hand of a friend always be near you.
And may God fill your heart with gladness to cheer you.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Happiness is....

.... a dog who would go out and do his business in today's rainy weather.  If only I had one of those dogs!  Mine refused.  Got my day off to a rip roaring start!  I even put on the rain boots, rain coat and grabbed an umbrella and the leash so I could walk him around the yard.  Nope.  Hubby's response was "Well, that's his problem now."  Um.  Yeah.  Do you think that a dog gets the concept of "I failed to pee & poop when I had the chance, so now I have to hold it in until my peoples get home?"   I don't think so.  And I don't want to have to clean it up when he can't hold it.  So now, thanks to that adorable little bugger's aversion to rain, I have to go home on my lunch hour and hope that I can work some magic with him and get him to do his business.  It's a damn good thing he's cute.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

One of the Great Mysteries of Life... women's clothing sizes!  There is no consistency, no rhyme or reason.  Right now, I'm wearing a Calvin Klein suit, size 8 pants - and they are not tight.  I'm 10 lbs over what I consider my ideal weight.  Okay 12 lbs.  How the heck am I fitting into size 8 pants?  Friendly sizing, that's how.  I have size 10 pants that I can button, but they are so freaking uncomfortable - I feel like a sausage in them.  Different clothing companies have different sizing.  Ann Taylor has friendly sizing.  I would expect right now to be in a size 8 with them.  I know with other clothing companies, I would be struggling to be in size 12 right now.  I think that AT does it because you feel good about yourself if you are wearing an 8.  And think about it - when I'm thinner - should I be looking at an AT 6?  Well no, even with them, it would be a stretch for me to get in a 6.  You really, really have to know your size in every company's clothing lines.  I ten to buy a lot of AT because I know my size with them and their clothing is stylish and classic.  Size charts on line don't always help.  Based on my bust size, many companies say I should be in a large or a 14.  For some, that is true.  I bought some stuff online a few months ago and based on their charts, I bought a large.  Big mistake.  I'm a medium.  Easy returns, thankfully and now I know.  Now - shall I get started on bras?  I buy one brand usually because I know what my size is with them.  But if they don't have the style I need - it can be hell to find a bra that fits properly.  You and I could be the same size, but your girls sit closer together than mine, so what works for you just isn't happening for me.  I really need to go to one of those specialty shops in the City and get fitted by someone who knows what they are doing.  I don't believe the "fitters" in places like Victoria's Secret or Nordstroms really knows.
Based on my experience with disparity in sizes, I now understand how magazines will say "Oh, so and so is a size 6" when I'm looking and thinking "My ass she's a size 6."  Maybe she is - in the right clothing line.  I really do wish there was more standardization.  I could handle being a size 10 across the board.  That would be better than being an 8 here and a 12 there.  But shoot - even within the same line there can be issues.  I have 3 pairs of jeans, all bought at the same time, same waist size, same length.  One pair I can only wear when I'm at that ideal weight.  One pair is loose at the ideal weight, but still looks good and looks good through my current weight.  One pair is loose at my current weight, so I only wear that pair if wearing a top that doesn't tuck in or a sweater so you can't see the issues at the waistline.  And they are all the same size, bought the same day, washed and dried in the same manner.   One of the great mysteries of life!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Friday Photos

Here are pictures of the finished mittens.  They are cabled on the top, plain on the palm.  I'm very happy with them.  And of course, there are pictures of Boomer - doing one of his favorite things - lazing around on his bed.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Happiness is...

....beautiful, handknit mittens!  And of course, they were knit by me!  I finished them up last night.  I am very proud of myself.  Knitting a pair of mittens was a goal of mine.  I wasn't so concerned about the knitting in the round for the body of the mittens as I was about how knitting the thumb would work.  Turns out it worked just fine.  And as I knit these mittens and tried them on and looked at them after they were done, I thought of what I would do differently.  When looking at other peoples projects on Ravelry, I often see the "mods" (code word for modifications) they have done, but rarely do I think about making mine own beyond the really easy ones, mainly because I haven't felt skilled enough to do it.  But now, I do feel skilled enough to start venturing into making more mods as I knit something so that it fits my tastes and size better.  I plan to take pictures of the mittens tonight, so there should be some Friday photos!

Friday, March 04, 2011

Friday Photos

This is a baby surprise jacket I made for my boss's new baby - shown before seaming.

Same baby surprise jacket after seaming and buttons added.

A big smooshy cowl for me.

Boomer - doing what he does best - sleeping on his new bed.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Happiness is...

....a touch of spring!  It is going to be in the low 50s today.  YAY!  Tomorrow will be cold again, but I'm loving today.  And tonight, I get to see a friend that I only see once a year basically at our annual professional conference.  We served on the Executive Board together, but both our terms have ended.  He lives in Wisconsin, but has a meeting out here this week - so it's nice to have a chance to get together and chat.  I do miss my time on the board because I made good friends that I now only get to see once a year.