There's More to Life Than Knitting!

Join Suna as she stops knitting long enough to ponder her life, share her joys and concerns, and comment on the goings on in the world.
You are very welcome here, so feel free to comment and contribute!

Monday, June 30, 2008

Grateful Monday

Originally uploaded by sunasak
The little anole depicted here shows why I am grateful today for my 15-year-old son, Beccano. He has been quite patient with me the last couple of days while I obsessed over the completion of my wedding shawl. First, he went with me to the fabric store to buy t-pins, and he happily looked at all the buttons, notions and fabrics. He even expressed a willingness to look at MORE fabric when I asked if he needed to leave. He wanted me to make him "disco pants" out of some awful sheer, shiny rainbow fabric, and swore he'd wear them to school, so I sorta scared him by sitting down and finding a simple pants pattern in the pattern book. He said, "I honestly didn't think you'd find one!" Plus, he sat there while I looked at ideas for wedding dresses. Quite the saint.

After that, he helped me block my shawl, which involves tediously threading thin wires through holes in the knitting, then carefully pinning the shawl to the correct shape (using those t-pins). With my shoulder pain, it was great to have some help on the awkward angles.

The task was made more pleasant by breaks taken to watch a cardinal sit on her nest, and hoping she'd fly off so we could see her two pale blue eggs. The cardinal family conveniently built their nest right outside our guest room window, so we have a "human's eye" view of the whole thing. The angle couldn't be better. Good ole Beccano is the one who found the nest. He is so good with nature. (I'd have a photo of that, but I am not good at taking pictures through window screens.)

The anole photo is because as soon as he woke up today, Beccano was asked to photograph me at many angles in the wedding shawl (photos on knitting blog). He was much more interested in capturing this guy. I was happy to see one of the wasps I have been fascinated by lately, so I got a bonus photo of it. These are BIG wasps, but very docile and calm. Beccano says he and his friend used to follow them, and discovered they live in holes in the ground. I can't believe how good he is with nature. I wish he could become a field biologist.

I did make the boy meatloaf for dinner last night, which was good. It's for dinner again tonight. Tuba Boy was with us last night at dinner, and he'd had WAY too much caffeine at work, so he was practically bouncing off the walls. I am happy to see him much calmer today! Perhaps last night's much-needed rain helped him settle a bit.

Me? I am waiting for the phone to ring. It did ring once, with another contract possibility. I applied for it, since I am not counting on anything until I have signed a contract. Thanks for reading, and happy Monday to all.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Hope Is a Happy Red Flower

Originally uploaded by sunasak
These are Lee's pentas, a flower he really likes. It's in the newly expanded front flower bed, which we are trying to keep alive through the incredibly hot June we are having.

I have been posting so much discouraging news lately that I thought I might want to share some better stuff. We all need it, with the constant stream of ickiness in the world and national news.

There has finally been some positive job movement, but nothing final, so I can't proclaim anything. But I did get a call from the place I interviewed at week before last, finally. The HR person said they had just been busy all week, but had lots of positive stuff to say about me. She wanted to know how I felt about them! I let her know I was very happy with them (they seemed like a nice team, and respectful--I am now really attuned to that kind of thing). So I expect to hear from them early next week.

And I heard some positive indications on the contract job I interviewed for just yesterday, too! We will have to see, since nothing is final, and I probably have more interviews on both of them. But at least I am still in the running for something! Two things!

Combined with Lee getting that second interview I already mentioned, that is plenty of work goodness for us. Of course, in my happiness I bought three tops at the outlet mall, but they are HAPPY tops. It was nice to go to dinner with Lee and Beccano tonight and laugh our heads off at Black Sabbath lyrics and feel light hearted, at least for a brief time!

I was pretty happy with the kids, anyway. I got Tuba Boy to at least LOOK at the book on choosing colleges, and Beccano actually wrote five thank-you notes today. Wow. Boyz about 2B Men.

Add to that the really cool giant wasps I saw today and a cute baby at the yarn shop, and I have had more than the usual share of goodness today. Hope really can be a red flower.

Send Vibes!

This is just a quick note to say that Lee scored a "real" interview for a "real" job, one he did the screening for 6 weeks ago. It would be a very interesting position at a wonderful company everyone has heard of and admires, and the offices are only ten minutes away from our house. He'd even get to be working near our old boss at ALE! So, think positive thoughts for him next week. The job would be great for him. And it is a permanent, benefits-laden position.

I think my interview yesterday went well, so I am hoping for some good news on that front. I got 8 contacts on that one, so lots of people thought I was appropriate.

Friday's Feast

Appetizer: What is the weather like today where you live?

It will be 100F by the end of the day. It has been the hottest June ever. There is a tiny chance of rain. We are already in drought, and that usually doesn't start until July. Ugh.

Soup: On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest, how career-minded are you?

3. I chose doing what I loved over doing what made money, and it backfired horribly. I am now 50 years old and still in "starter" jobs. I am highly educated and smart, but did all the wrong things, including spending over a decade at a nonprofit organization that many people dislike so much that they hold it against you in other jobs. Right now, I just want something that pays enough to cover my bills. I just want to knit.

Salad: What type of window coverings do you have in your home? Blinds, curtains, shutters, etc.?

There are wood blinds in the office and dining room. The rest of the house has really nice blinds that save energy. In the media room they are the type that can lower from the top or raise from the bottom. There are toppers in the family room that match some of my kitchen things, and the kids rooms and guest room also have curtains. The master bedroom has some long drapey thing. There are no curtains or blinds in the little formal living room. I never have figured out what I want. It's been eleven years.

Main Course: Name something that instantly cheers you up.

Lee and the kids. And things with pansies on them.

Dessert: How many times do you hit the snooze button on a typical morning?

0. Now that I am an unemployed slacker, I ignore Lee's phone alarm. When I am working, I get up the moment the alarm starts. I hate listening to alarms.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Thank Goodness for Goofy Friends

A, P and S
Originally uploaded by sunasak
Here are some of my lovely yarn shop friends making faces. One is happy her arm isn't being held together by giant steel rods any more. The next is showing her love for knitting magazines and probably laughing really loud. The other, who is only ONE day younger than me, is batting her eyelashes trying to get me to knit her a sweater like my recent red one. She brought me all the yarn for it.

In the other photo (if you do not see it in your feed, go to the actual blog; it will be there) there is my friend who brought me a cheer up card, the one who suggested I add a blue bead to the wedding shawl for something blue (standing), the friend who is happy with her new house and can knit two socks at the same time, and last, our German friend who actually tries to concentrate on knitting at our gatherings. I missed a couple of folks who were also there or came later, but wanted to share all these nice women, a wide variety of ages, stages, and beliefs, who cheer me up every Wednesday. I sure am glad we have our weekly knitting nights!

What else cheers me up? Well, interviews help. I had one yesterday for a place where I'd teach Microsoft Office applications in a classroom setting, 3-4 days a week, at a fairly good rate of pay. I could probably make it on that IF they really came through with that much work. In a little while I have a phone interview for another contract at ALE. And yes, I'd take that. It's 9 months of good pay so I could rest up and keep looking for the ideal thing. Of course, I keep hoping the place I interviewed at week before last will call back, but one thing I have noticed is that if I really like a place and the people, they don't like me. It's fairly consistent so far. Sigh. I really wish I had a job in a small place, with people I know and like, where I could feel like a real contributor and know my work is valued.

But, things are moving on. Tuba Boy's car is fixed, so he will be happy about that. He and his brother have been buying and playing video games, hanging with friends, and in general enjoying summer. Tuba Boy is working a lot, but also getting some down time, which he needs. Tomorrow he gets his senior portraits taken. I am not sure why I thought it was on the day of my last post. I must have meant to say "this week."

Lee still has another week at his job, which is a relief. They tried to cut him off this week, but his boss got him the time. Every penny helps. I know it will all work out, but it sure feels like we are cutting things close. Glad I have my nice, friendly faces at the yarn shop to bring some cheer and remind me everyone's got troubles and triumphs.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Monday Gratitude

Sweet Rose
Originally uploaded by sunasak
Lee always does "grateful Monday" so I thought I would today. I am grateful right now for this sweet dog. Rose is over 1.5 years now, and has turned into one of the nicest dogs I ever had. She doesn't bark too much, she is very loving and affectionate and she is very obedient. She's also really soft, and I love her fur other than this time of year when she and Buddy are both making mounds of deposits all over the house. She really drove me bonkers as a puppy when she ate lots and lots of my good furniture, indoors and outdoors, but now she only chews ice cubes, which she asks for very politely. She's just so huggable and happy, without any of the irritating habits of the other three dog wonders of the house.

I didn't do much this weekend besides hang out and enjoy the kids and their friends. Lee was off arranging to sell some of his property (see his blog) and since I know nothing about selling property, I stayed out of it. I missed the chance to see his dad, which is too bad, but I had already scheduled a knitting class that only I could teach.

I am glad Lee's back, anyway. He planted us some new plants to replace the petunias, which the heat finally got to, and I look forward to the ornamental peppers and other happy planties. Our tomato has lots of blooms, so I hope to have actual tomatoes soon, too.

I have to work on a presentation for a job interview on Wednesday, and another contract possibility has come up, so I am not without job hopes. And the week holds lots of exciting work like getting rid of an old credit card and transferring a few automatic payments to my new one. Wow. Mostly I will do stuff with the kids, like go to game stores and bead shops. Tuba Boy gets his senior portrait taken today. Sniff.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Advantages of Being at Home

Refurbished Bike
Originally uploaded by sunasak
I am not thrilled to be earning no money, but I am managing to enjoy some aspects of being at home.

1. The best thing is being able to run errands with the kids. For example, I was able to take Beccano's used road bike to a bike shop with him, and get it refurbished so he can ride it this summer (assuming it gets less hot). He had been really upset when the bike didn't work right when he tried to use it, but he feels really good now. We went to a really nice bike shop who did not charge much at all. I am relieved that his dad and stepmother are able to help with this, since our finances are so limited right now. I feel like a "real" mom being able to help him during "work" hours!

2. I was also able to take him around looking for an African drum, which we found at the local music store. It gives him something fun to do while waiting to get work from my friend Bill. He got a "deal," too. It's nice to see him making good choices of what to spend money on!

3. I am also able to get little errands done that have been stagnating when I am gone so much. Beccano and I got his really fancy Radiohead poster framed, as well as Tuba Boy's portrait from his band trip last spring. It looks really good in a nice frame, as you can see. I am so glad Michael's has frames on sale almost all the time! We're putting the picture in the media room, even though it may not be the best one ever. It's still funny.

4. Today we are going to the inexpensive box store to get Tuba Boy very, very cheap pants to wear at work, since he gets bleach all over his work pants. I had been wanting to do this for quite a while. It's nice to have some time.

5. Lots of knitting. Even messed up knitting (had to erase a lot on my shawl last night, which will be detailed on the knitting blog.

6. Next week I can help get Tuba Boy's car repaired. Doing stuff like that while working so far away and taking the bus was practically impossible. The car really needs fixing, and I am relieved that, again, the kids' dad and stepmother are helping out. It is pleasant working the stuff out with her. That is so good!

Other Stuff

I have had no job action all week. I hope, hope, hope that changes next week.

I am sending healing thoughts to my old friend who had some scary surgery. Even if we won't ever get to talk again, I still care about the whole family. And I am sending healing thoughts to my church friend who also had some unexpected surgery complications.

Friday's Feast

Appetizer: If you could live on another continent for 1 year, which one would you choose?

That would be Europe. Including islands offshore of it.

Soup: Which browser do you use to surf the Internet?


Salad: On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being highest), how much do you know about the history of your country?

8. I am not a historical scholar, but I certainly know enough to be literate and understand the news. I realized how little I knew when my son was taking AP US History and asked me questions. I often knew the answers, but there were some events I hadn't heard of.

Main Course: Finish this sentence: Love is…

...really complicated

Dessert: Have you ever been in or near a tornado?

WAY too many times for comfort. I am really spooked by them because of it. Examples:

1. Tornado that hit our elementary school and knocked a tree on my brother's kindergarten classroom. Same tornado where my dad was stuck in traffic and saw a truck picked up and set back down going the other way.

2. Tornado that hit north of our town and wiped out my dad's friend's farm. All the hogs were gone. The house was gone (luckily they had gone to check on the grandparents at the next house). And it looked like a road was being paved through their woods. A wide road.

3. Tornado that hit west of town and woke up my college roommate and me. Snapped off the tops of pine trees all over town. Hit at the trailer park where my boyfriend's dad had just bought a used mobile home. The dog next door disappeared. "Our" mobile home just got a big dent.

4. Leaving tornado-prone Gainesville, Florida, there was the huge tornado we watched come toward us in Champaign, Illinois, since we worked near the top of the tallest building in town. We had to FORCE the business owner to go to the basement, away from his email. We told him we needed our jobs.

5. Then we moved to Texas. Tornadoes hit Jarrell Texas in 1997, then waltzed across the countryside, scaring the pee out of the dudes building my house, who had a very clear view, then hit Cedar Park, Texas, including the neighborhood of one of my new friends. The radio said it was coming straight at us. I had a 3 and 6 year old and was living on the third floor of an apartment building. We had NOWHERE to hide. This traumatized Beccano for life.

6. Last month the poor boy and unwittingly I drove home into a tornado warning. Ran inside to hide in the laundry room. He fell apart.

And I have left out a few other close calls.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Yo! Let's Get Religion

Crape Myrtle
Originally uploaded by sunasak
I promised I would remember my other blog topics and write today, and since I am once again sipping a hot beverage at the local Scooter's coffee shop, I do have time. And I remembered a couple of things I wanted to muse on, too. So enjoy the pink crape myrtle and read for a minute or two...


Beccano is getting good at gift giving, at last. He brought me back the perfect thing from Ireland, and it didn't cost him a cent. He brought me a lovely, smooth river rock (from the river!) that is shaped so that it nestles perfectly in your hand. It's not egg shaped, more like the exact space that the inside of your hand makes as it goes toward making a fist. It feels so cool and grounded to hold it! He also found a yak hair bag that his dad and spouse had bought in Nepal and brought it. Wowzer is that one rough bag. But, he knows how much I like fiber and hand work, so I appreciated it. You can tell it was hand woven.

Lee also has been getting me little things to cheer me up, and they are most appreciated. It just brightens my day.


I am just SO enjoying having the kids' friends around. I think I missed them, too! We had another one over for dinner last night, and a whole bunch were here later in the evening. Two slept over, and when I had to wake them up earlier than they'd have liked, they cheerfully cleaned up their messes and kept joking around with us. It's so nice that they aren't surly and silent. And we subjected them to Trey Bone practicing last night, so they could have been surly! It is so much fun to listen to them talk about issues, joke around and kid each other. They are so darned good natured.

Getting Religion. Yo

Jeff sent me a link to this site about Yo the other day, and it made me smile. Of COURSE there has to be an Open Source religion! There's an Open Source everything else! They seem incredibly well meaning, and I find little to disagree with them, and lots to laugh WITH them about on their site (see if you find the graphic where a monkey morphs into Pres. Bush). They have ten excellent principles that don't even get too weird until number 9 and thought I find it odd to base religious documents for a world religion on the US Constitution, I guess you have to start somewhere, and our Transcendentalist foreparents are as good a source as any. And as a registered Unitarian Universalist, I have to be all for numbered sets of principles!

So, check into Yoism if you are one of my "Atheist, Skeptic, Agnostic, Realist, Enlightenment, Humanist, Unitarian, Transcendentalist, Pantheist, [or] Deist" friends and see if you, too, are a Yoist and you didn't even know it. If nothing else, it would be fun to confuse folks with some Yoan bumper stickers or t-shirts. And their sincere yet sorta convoluted efforts to have a deity yet not have a deity (handy for the atheist and agnostic component) are fun to read and think about.

Maybe I will be called to start a Yoist congregation out here somewhere. I have no other vocation at the moment so why not?


From the previous sentence you may well infer that I am not at all well. Hee hee. Well, actually, I am not feeling very well. I woke up this morning feeling extra nauseated, sweaty and sickly. I think maybe some delicious chocolate cherries I ate last night didn't do me any good. But, after what passes for barfing in me (nothing came out) and more normal Suna sickness, I feel better. I am sipping hot tea and just having some pangs, but nothing awful. Let's hope it was just a little something that will end quickly! It is no fun being sick on a Wednesday, since I have to flee the house most of the day due to cleaning ladies (of course, we may not have THEM much longer).

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Thinking Thoughts

Lake Vultures
Originally uploaded by sunasak
I haven't written much lately, though I have been thinking of things to blog about, then forgetting them. My brain is a bit mushy lately. I am not feeling quite the perky way I was a few weeks ago--keeping up the hopeful vibe is a lot of work. I do have a couple of things ongoing, so I am fine and hopeful, just tired of how long it takes to find work.

On Sunday Lee and I went to scenic Lake Limestone, Texas. It is a fairly large lake to the east of Waco. We looked around at houses, when we could find them (took the wrong maps). It is a nice and quiet lake, and we saw some really neat places, mostly out of our price range. But, it was nice to get out and see different spots where neither of us had ever been before. The photo is not the most scenic, but I liked that the vultures seemed to be posing for us. They are by a pile of brush that was cleared out to build a lake house. There IS a bit of lake in the background.

The kids came home Sunday night, and I was really glad to see them. They have been chattering away about what they did in Ireland (went to some places I never got to, like the Skellig Islands, where there are a lot of puffins. They have been lots of fun to do stuff with, and I am glad their friends are traipsing in and out again. I miss them when the kids aren't around. We've had teen dinner guests two nights in a row, and the conversation is always lively and really fun. It is nice to be the parent of a teen, most of the time.

Well, unexpected guests have arrived of the adult kind. The singing group is back to rehearsing again, so the early bird of the group is here 20 minutes ahead of schedule. Glad we are rehearsing, though. That's almost always pleasant. Apparently we may have a real gig.

I'll try to post more tomorrow. I know I had a few things to chat about, but I've run out of time.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Friday's Feast

More good job news. I sent in a resume yesterday and heard back immediately from a recruiter, who set up a time to come in and talk to him today. He asked me to write up a paragraph on my instructional design credentials, which I did this morning. A half hour after I sent that off, he called back and said the company wanted to do a phone screening at 5 this afternoon! That's quick action. I'll have to remind myself of all those instructional design terms, like "Bloom's Taxonomy" and such, then I will be ready for that. It feels a bit better to have multiple possibilities.

To relax, Lee and I had a nice Mexican dinner at our favorite nearby restaurant, with our favorite amusing server to entertain us. Then we took a drive through the countryside (hey, it's cheaper than a movie, though barely). We checked out his old house and were really pleased to see what a nice job the new owner has done renovating it. I am glad to see the house living up to its potential. Now it can gather happy memories. We also drove by a lake and saw some interesting old houses and churches.

Plus, I heard from the kids and they are back in the States. Soon they'll be at their dad's house, and Sunday back here!

Friday's Feast

Appetizer: Do you consider yourself to be an optimist or a pessimist?

I'd prefer the term "realist." I like to look on the best side of things, but if I have evidence to the contrary, I don't like sugar-coating things. As someone who's doing a pretty good job not letting other people's opinions of me get me down, I think I can be optimistic when justified!

Soup: What is your favorite color of ink to write with?


Salad: How often do you get a manicure or pedicure? Do you do them yourself or go to a salon and pay for them?

I've only had my nails done professionally 3 times. I enjoyed it, but since I have been painting my own very long nails since I was 14, I feel like I do a fine job myself. Since having the kids I haven't been painting my nails as consistently as I used to, but in the summer I do keep the toenails some fun color, and I'd say about 1 week out of 6 my fingernails are painted. They look OK bare since they aren't stained from polish like they used to be. Mostly I spend a lot of time trying to keep them as short as is fashionable now. My nails like to grow and grow. As a teen they were really long and many colors, often all at once.

Main Course: Have you ever won anything online? If so, what was it?

I was the first person to finish a sock in a knitalong, and I won a skein of sock yarn. Ironically the lady sent me yarn in the same color I made the first pair in.

Dessert: In which room in your house do you keep your home computer?

LOL, that's a good one. The desktop model is in my office. The laptop roves, though is usually in the media room (where I am now). The kids' computers tend to be in their rooms, though Beccano has a laptop that moves. Lee has his desktop in the office, plus one that runs his MP3 collection through the sound system. He has some number of laptops, too.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I Yam What I Yam

And it isn't Supergirl, though she was always my role model, my goal, or my standard. My office has a lovely collection of Supergirl figurines (and her erstwhile beau Braniac 5 from the Legion of Superheroes comics of the 60s-80s).

Gee, no wonder I never live up to my expectations for myself with Kara Zor-El as my model! The last few years have knocked me down a peg or two (or a few dozen), and certainly that most recent job experience could have made me feel more like Charlie Brown than Linda Lee Danvers (Supergirl's alter ego, who more resembles me).

Lee's crossword puzzle today had a clue listed that said "A verb for Popeye" and it was "yam." Which led me here. I am glad that I haven't been knocked down, just turned a bit more realistic in my goals--I know now that I can't do just anything--I need the cooperation and assistance of my coworkers and supervisors--like anyone else who is trying to do a good job. That makes sense, because very few people have the luxury of working in a vacuum. Even solitary novelists need their agents, publishers and editors for success!

So, I was pleased today to interview with a group of people who appeared very supportive and team-oriented, and who were open and honest about the plusses and minuses of the position they were interviewing for. I felt a bit more Supergirl-ish to hear them say twice that my answers were the best they'd heard so far. It reminded me that I can fit in somewhere, and that such an opportunity may very well show up in a bit! I hope to get asked back to this place, but if not, I have another opportunity developing as well, as a curriculum developer.

Now I feel like I am getting somewhere and heading in the right direction, a little more in control of my own destiny again. I am letting my inner Supergirl peek out a bit.


On a similar note, I have had someone at church and someone on an email list recently dismiss my issues as being because I am "too sensitive." That one has always been a sore point with me, you know, one of those deeply rooted issues that therapists love to go into, because it's something my dad always said to put me down. Luckily, I have read the series of books on highly sensitive people (HSPs), which point out that there are many good things about being sensitive, and that it is a trait shared with millions of people, just not the majority of folks. I am proud to care deeply about others, have a (usually) good intuition (helps with tarot!), and some of the other fine traits HSPs share. If you are wondering whether you might be a lovely, fascinating HSP, take this self-test!

I'm not perfect, but I honestly do like being me. It hasn't been beaten out of me!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Patience Is Rewarded

The Dainty Lobelia
Originally uploaded by sunasak
Lee has been carefully babying this sensitive plant and its friend all spring. The heat seems to get to it, so it gets pretty droopy. But, he has faithfully watered it and talked to it daily, and as a reward it has grown to at least 4 feet tall with this lovely plant stalk, making it a fine representative of our red garden! Patience CAN be rewarded.

I hope that is true for me, too. My good news is that I did well enough in the phone interview today that I got a second in-person interview set up for Thursday! I look forward to seeing where this place is and learning more about the job. I hope I can do it, because I'd get to use my nonprofit knowledge, and that is the kind of thing I had hoped to do for the past few years.

Other than that, I am waiting for the phone to ring, enjoying being at home, and enjoying Lee, even when he has a headache and I have some stomach issue. I feel OK today and hope he does, too! I sure hope the kids are having fun in Ireland. I can't wait to hear the stories!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Time Marches On, Sigh

I am reminded today, in the midst of some rough times with former friends and organizational in-fighting, that I had some wonderful times in my long-term job with the nonprofit organization. A lot of funny things happened, and I met some of the most wonderful people on earth.

One of them passed away this morning. She was the oldest of the women who started the organization, and one of the ones I'd had the most contact with. As the picture shows, much of our contact was with strong beverages in hand (hers were usually a Cosmo). In this 2005 photo, Edwina was pushing 90, but still a barrel of laughs. She was most thrilled and honored to pose for the cover of the never-written memoir my graphic design partner and I wanted to do. The furthest the book got was this poorly PhotoShopped mock book cover we made as a joke. (I assure you, David could have made a much better book cover when the time came--he is quite the talented one when it comes to images.)

Here's her obituary, if you'd like to read more.

I think a lot of people have a huge hero-worship thing going with the women who founded the organization, and have sanctified them to the point where no one would dare suggest they could do any wrong, make a mistake, or be human. But, they are humans. Nice ladies, some of whom had some strange ideas along with their wonderful mothering instincts and love for babies. But, they were great mentors, excellent listeners, and quite innovative in many ways. Edwina listened to me and my friends for hours, never tiring of helping more and more women try to find different ways to make the world better for babies, children and parents. She lived a long life, got to see her children become successful, as well as good parents themselves, and left a legacy of humor kindness and cheer that many, many people will never forget. A toast to dear Edwina!

Not much else is going on except in my mind. We had Lee's tarot friends over for dinner last night, and that has left me feeling a bit sickly--I don't think they did it, but it must be something I ate. They were most pleasant. And we sang Beatles songs at church, including a wonderful a capella version of "Because," all arranged by a talented church member.

As a fun weekend activity, I have mostly dwelt on my inner failings, poor judgment of others (at the moment I am totally unsure who my friends are and aren't), and the meaning of loyalty, none of which is doing me a bit of good. But, it's something I am good at doing, heh heh.

I am going to stop dwelling on all my personal issues right now and go knit and be happy that my wedding shawl yarn arrived. Lee says we should get married three weeks after it is done. Yeah, that's a way to plan!

Friday, June 6, 2008


Front Yard Edging
Originally uploaded by sunasak
Yeah, life goes on. I am actually recovering a bit from some of the stress of recent months. That is such a relief. I'm getting a whole lot of knitting done, too. And looking for work like crazy.

The good news is some of that is paying off. I am up for a couple more contract positions, and have an actual interview for a REAL job I applied for, but not until next Tuesday. I don't know what to do about that--it sounds like a GREAT place, but I am so worried about income that I might have to accept a contract position before those interviews are over. And I am not going to dump a contract in favor of a job with benefits again, after that last experience. In any case, it feels good to have some action going on.

Speaking of action, Lee has finished the project pictured here in an almost-finished state. This bed in front of the house was getting overgrown, so he expanded it a foot at least on all sides and has put more of those wonderful landscape rocks around it. With the flowers added, our front yard looks wonderful (of course, no one can see it due to Tuba Boy's car blocking the view). Other than the annuals, the entire bed is native plants, so it is very little work. Now our front yard looks very coordinated and well-kept. I sure am grateful to Lee for all his very hard work on this.

The next project on the list is tree trimming. Lee got a little electric chain saw and I can't WAIT until we get ahold of a big ladder so he can trim limbs away from our chimney. You see, the wind has blown for three days straight. Up to 40 mph winds yesterday. The giant tree in the back yard has grown up and around the chimney this year. Limbs bang and bang. Plus, they are banging on windows on all sides of the house. Time for another trimming. Actually, once things settle, we will have fewer trees. I don't want the house damaged. And I need to sleep. We tried sleeping in the guest room last night, but it had its own banging limb.

I love trees, though. I hate to cut them down.

We are taking things very easy right now. With no kids around, we are eating inexpensively and with the notable exception of me spending money at a yarn shop on Wednesday, we not doing much, to conserve money.

Well, friends, I thought I had all sorts of blog fodder, but I feel so out of it that all I can do is paste in Friday's Feast, which is back from vacation, anyway. Please send supportive comments and/or emails. I will appreciate them.

Friday's Feast

Appetizer: When you drink soda/pop/coke, do you prefer to drink it from the bottle, a can, or after pouring it into a cup?

Because I drink so slowly, ice tends to water my soda down, and pouring diminishes the bubbles. So, I guess I prefer it from a bottle or can. I am not really particular about it, though.

Soup: What television show are you willing to stay up late to watch?

The Daily Show and Colbert Report. Actually, I used to stay up and watch Craig Ferguson, too, but Lee is already grumpy that I like to watch the first two, so I have given up on that. When I had to get up before 6, of course, I could not manage that latest one, anyway.

Salad: Name one person, place, or thing you think of as brilliant.

Ravelry, the knitting online community. They have done a great job with that.

Main Course: Would you be willing to work 4 10-hour days instead of 5 8-hour days in order to save gas?

Heavens yes. I'd do it just to have three days off, so I'd have time to go to stores that are only open during "business hours" every so often.

Dessert: If you were a superhero, what would you call yourself?

SuperSuna. Duh.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Like Any Other Day

Garden Mushroom
Originally uploaded by sunasak
A weekend's like any other day when there's no job to go to. On the other hand, there are endless possibilities. And you can always find beauty in unlikely situations, much like the little mushroom here, peeking up between the leaves of our onions. Isn't it beautiful?

I'm feeling like the kiss of death for friends at my jobs. I found out today that the nice friend who helped me move my stuff out of my office got removed from the program he was in, too. At least he can still get a job there, but gee, that's batting .000 for my church friends there. Hope the other two people I know who are still there don't get too close to either of us!

And then, argh, we'd thought things had gotten as bad as possible where I spent the bulk of my working years, but no, telling volunteers they are no longer welcome was not the worst. They also took down a valued resource for thousands of mothers, which had three years of archived material. There was no warning, so mothers couldn't save their personal information, stories, and advice. Years of FAQs, quality help for new mothers and organizational information was also wiped out with no warning.

Wow, when they don't like former co-workers of mine, they really go all out! The woman I worked so hard with to set the system up in the first place was also banned from it. It was a BIG mistake to punish someone so dedicated to the mission of the organization and to the mothers she helped. Her fans are legion. While the decision-makers can't fire innocent mothers and babies for expressing their outrage at this, and they have sure guaranteed that thousands of women will find other organizations to join and donate to, and that they will tell all their friends what happened. What a weird world.

I still truly admire most of the women I used to work with in my department. They focused so hard on helping others. They took a lot of unkind treatment and still stuck around because they felt that what they were doing was important. However, other than one exception, they got no rewards for their work, just pressure to go away.

So, let's forget about that. I keep TRYING to. Instead let's laugh at how my weekend started. With dropping the boys off at the airport to go see their dad then head off to Ireland. As Lee and i were driving away from the airport, the phone rang. Beccano had forgotten his passport. The one he kept in plain sight so he'd be sure to not forget it. Thank goodness they don't leave for Ireland until Tuesday, so I was able to send it to him overnight, at great expense. Sigh. I filled the rest of the day with visiting yarn shop friends (hi Lisa!), going to the far south yarn shop in town with Suzanne and meeting an Internet celebrity (see the knitting blog for more on that), then having a lovely Italian dinner with my beloved. That long day wiped me out!

Today Lee picked these beautiful flowers in the garden and displayed them in the media room for me. That was so sweet. He's working on more flower bed stuff now. We sang the hardest choir song ever today, with all sorts of not-well-practiced people, but it came off! The cello player who was brought in did a great job, too. It ended up being pretty fun, even though I forgot to bring flowers for the altar in honor of Beccano's birthday--I'll have to tell him he is not the only forgetful person in the family! I picked some wildflowers, though, and they looked lovely.

Keep sending job vibes. I appreciate them.