A window into the life of a professional geek, wife and mother (and nonni), stitcher/designer, bibliophile, old-school gamer, and whatever other roles she finds herself in.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Monday miscellany - 23Jan17

This past week was fairly busy. We had friends visiting the area from up north, and we spent some time with them.

What I've been reading... I finished Randall Munroe's _What If?_, and have started G.K.Chesterton's _Ballad of the White Horse_. That is pretty short, and next up is Brian Staveley's _The Emperor's Blades_, the first book in a trilogy recommended by a coworker.

What I've been crafting... I did very little crafting this week - maybe an hour on Papillon Creations' _Around the World in 80 Stitches_, and maybe an hour or two on the Star of Donegal afghan.

Fumbling toward fitness I didn't make it by Curves at all. I did only 170 minutes on the treadmill for 9.09 miles.

One Little Victory Visiting with friends we hadn't seen in over a year, and spending a good Saturday afternoon playing board games and card games with DD were both time well spent. Goals can take a backseat to more important things like friends and family.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Monday miscellany - 16Jan17

Last week was a bit rough in some ways, the most notable being a car accident. Fortunately no injuries to humans, though my trusty Honda, Silmarien, has passed into the west. Well, into another's hands, though those hands may end up being the scrapyard. I'm hoping this week is better, on all fronts.

What I've been reading... I'm about halfway finished with _What If?_, being on page 146 of 305. There's a possibility I may finish this week, but not a strong one.

What I've been crafting... I've put away the magi panel and gotten out Papillon Creations _Around the World in 80 Stitches_, that I started 4 or 5 years ago. I've only done about 20 stitches, though. I also haven't crocheted much this week, uncharacteristically choosing not to craft while zoning in front ov the TV. It's been that kind of week.

Fumbling toward fitness In the trifecta of failures, I only made it by Curves once this past week. I did do 188 minutes on the treadmill for 9.65 miles, so at least it wasn't a total failure.

One Little Victory We had a good dinner tonight with visiting friends, whom we hadn't seen in over a year.

Monday, January 09, 2017

Monday miscellany - 9Jan17

We're in the middle of winter, relatively speaking. It's actually been down in the 30s overnight the past two nights, but is warming up again. So winter was on a weekend this year, though I wish we'd had more of it.

What I've been reading... I finished _Arcanum Unbounded_ shortly before midnight last night, and will be starting Randall Munroe's _What If?_ tonight, which is 320 pages.

What I've been stitching... I've got much of the outlining on one of the magi's robes complete for the magi Nativity panel, and I'm setting that aside until Lent starts in March. I'll be switching to Papillon Creation's _Around the World in 80 Stitches_ next. I've crocheted a little more on the Star of Donegal afghan as well.

Fumbling toward fitness... I made it by Curves twice, and had my weigh-in for the "no gain" challenge. I didn't lose any additional weight over the past month, but I did come in under my starting weight, which made it a successful challenge. I also treadmilled 229 minutes for 11.54 miles, which is slightly higher than average. That was because I was close to the end of a book, and went for a finish.

One Little Victory Good stitching progress, a book finish and a successful fitness challenge made for a week of little victories.

Monday, January 02, 2017

Happy 2017! Monday miscellany - 2Jan17

Happy New Year!

As with every new year, it's time to look at what I've accomplished in the past, and look toward the future.

In 2016, I travelled back from one foreign country (Germany on New Years Day 2016), traveled to and from another (Canada in July), and completed 4 crafting projects (2 crochet, 1 knit, 1 cross-stitch). Quite a busy year!
Looking at last year's goals:
  • Read 10,000 pages - I read 11093 pages, so mission accomplished.
  • Do 10 101List items - I came in at 7 items, and neither of the two stitching ones I'd wanted to do.
  • Isengard to Minas Tirith (Merry's path) - I reached here in September.
  • Isengard to Minas Tirith (Gandalf and Pippin's path) Only 151 miles of 517, but this was a stretch goal anyway.
So, 2 of 4 on goal completion, but progress toward the others. Not perfect, but not too shabby.

Looking forward to this year, the goals will be very similar. It will be a bit of a transition year as DD prepares for college, so it's hard to say yet what the latter half of the year will hold. There are, however, some goals that are always constant.
  • Read 10,000 pages - I read over 11,000 last year, but that was with two trips, and I tend to read more when I travel. I think I'll retain it at 10k.
  • Do 10 101List items - I'll be rolling over the 101List to another round in late July, but it serves well as a master 'to-do' list. I do want to complete the magi panel for Nativity and finish Around the World in 80 Stitches as two of these.
  • Isengard to Minas Tirith (Gandalf and Pippin's path) - I'm already on this path, so I should arrive around mid-year.
So that's what's on tap for goals. I do also want to retain the weekly updates, so here's the first one!

What I've been reading... I'm on page 497 of 672 in Brandon Sanderson's _Arcanum Unbounded_, and should finish this week. Next on tap: _What If?_ by Randall Munroe (of xkcd fame).

What I've been stitching... I've put a fair bit of time into the magi panel for Nativity. The angel is complete, and I've started on one of the magi. I'm only going to work on it for another week, and will put it away after Epiphany. I'll resume work when Lent starts in March.

Fumbling toward fitness... I did make it by Curves thrice, which completes my workout count for the "No Gain" challenge. I'm also down several pounds, unofficially. Official weigh-in is next week. As for treadmill, I only did 165 minutes for 7.25 miles, which is down a bit from usual. I'll try to average 30 minutes a day in the coming year.

One Little Victory It's been a very relaxing down week, and I've been watching a lot of football while stitching. Georgia Tech won their bowl game 33-18 against Kentucky. Go Jackets!

Monday, December 26, 2016

Monday miscellany - 26Dec16

Another Christmas come and gone. We had a nice drama-free gathering with the kids, including both grandsons. Good food and no drama. DD decorated the tree and the main area of the house, which is the first time in several years that it has been.

What I've been reading... I'm on page 428 of 672 in Arcanum Unbounded - not much reading this week because of holiday events.

What I've been crafting... I'm not quite done with the angel on the magi panel of Nativity, but I should finish it in the next day or two. I've not crocheted much at all, only a few minutes during football.

Fumbling toward fitness... I did make it by Curves thrice again last week. I wasn't quite as productive on the treadmill, only 115 minutes for 5.75 miles. Again, because of the busy week.

One Little Victory DH and I celebrated our wedding anniversary this past week. Not sure why he continues to put up with me, but I am glad that he does.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Monday miscellany - 19Dec16

My work year is over, so I can hopefully enjoy a much-needed break.

What I've been reading... I'm on page 389 of 672 of Brandon Sanderson's _Arcanum Unbounded_. I may or may not finish this by next Monday, then I'll need to decide on my next reading.

What I've been crafting... I'm now at about 40% on the Star of Donegal afghan. I've also put a few more hours on the angel on the magi panel - the halo, wings, and face are now complete. I also designed this year's ornament, a garden of sorts:

(Click to download PDF)

Some years, the design comes to me relatively early as the holidays approach. Other years, well, not so much. I had the beginnings of the idea a few weeks ago, but the idea to make it a garden only hit me on Friday.

Fumbling toward fitness... I made it by Curves thrice, although admittedly two of those workouts were a bit light - I did a fair bit of moving furniture around on Tuesday and Wednesday, and was consequently a bit sore. I did 187 minutes for 9.4 miles on the treadmill, which is a little less than last week.

One Little Victory I've finished all of my Christmas shopping, and dispatched gifts as necessary. One less thing on my plate!

Monday, December 12, 2016

Monday miscellany - 12Dec16

Time sure has flown - only 3 weeks left in 2016!

What I've been reading... I'm on page 323 of 672 in Brandon Sanderson's _Arcanum Unbounded_, and I'm toward the end of the "Mistborn: Secret History" novella. I've read that one before as well, but just as with "The Emperor's Soul", I'm noticing details that I'd missed before. I'm sure I'll take at least another week to finish it.

What I've been crafting... I'm at 30% on the Star of Donegal afghan, which is shaping up fairly quickly now that I've figured out the pattern. I'm also continuing to make progress on the angel in the magi panel on Marbek Nativity - the angel has a halo, hair, and half of its wings now.

Fumbling toward fitness... My progress was comparable to last week's - I made it to Curves thrice, and did 213 minutes on the treadmill for 10.65 miles. I also had a weigh-in, and am officially down 3 pounds since the beginning of the "No Gain" challenge. I have several work lunches coming up, though, so hopefully those 3 pounds will stay off!

One Little Victory A 3-pound loss in the midst of a busy holiday season is definitely a victory, one that came with associated small losses off my waist and hips. Definitely a step toward getting healthier!

Monday, December 05, 2016

Monday miscellany - 5Dec16

And time continues to fly. December already, and it seems like a lot of folks will be glad to see 2016 gone. Just a few more weeks.

What I've been reading... I finished the first novella in _Arcanum Unbounded_, and am on page 125 of 672. I'd already read the first novella, "The Emperor's Soul", but upon rereading I'm able to see connections I didn't before.

What I've been crafting... I'm at about 23% on the Star of Donegal afghan. It's working up fairly quickly. I've also picked up the magi panel on my large MarBek Nativity, and am making decent progress. I may actually finish the angel by Christmas, and be working on magi by Epiphany. Of course, I could be overly optimistic. Time will tell.

Fumbling toward fitness... I made it by Curves thrice this past week, and did 215 minutes for 10.75 miles on the treadmill. If I can maintain this for another week or two, I could probably consider myself back on track.

One Little Victory I got a completely unexpected card and gift of a needleminder from a friend today for finishing Tapestry last week. It warmed my heart and made me laugh.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Monday miscellany - 28Nov16

I had a nice long Thanksgiving weekend. I spent Wednesday cleaning, and then was able to sit back and relax much of Thursday while DsS, DD, and DsD took over my kitchen. Thanksgiving Day was filled with good food, good company, good football, and no drama. The rest of the weekend was similarly restful, which was much needed by all.

What I've been reading... I finished B16's _Last Testament_ last night. Fortunately, my quandary about my next reading material was answered with the Kindle delivery of Brandon Sanderson's Arcanum Unbounded, a collection of novellas from his Cosmere universe(s). I'll start that in a few minutes when I get on the treadmill.

What I've been crafting... I crocheted a little more on Star of Donegal, but my biggest progress was that I finished Ink Circles "Tapestry":
Ink Circles - Tapestry
(Click for larger picture)

I finished Tapestry just in time to resume work on the magi panel of MarBek Nativity at the beginning of Advent, and I hope to make good progress on that throughout the Christmas season.

Fumbling toward fitness... I made it by Curves twice, and did 187 minutes on the treadmill for 9.43 miles. I did enough cleaning Wednesday that it should also count as exercise!

One Little Victory Having a relaxing Thanksgiving weekend was quite the victory indeed.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Monday miscellany - 21Nov16

We've continued to have cooler temperatures the past week, and it was even in the 40s overnight last night. It's been wonderful.

What I've been reading... I finished In the Field Marshal's Shadow, and have started reading Last Testament, an interview with Pope Benedict XVI. I still need to figure out what to read next, but I have a couple of days.

What I've been crafting... I'm at about 87% on Ink Circles "Tapestry", and with the long Thanksgiving weekend coming up, I'm hoping to finish it this week. I also had to restart the Star of Donegal afghan with a smaller crochet hook, and am back up to where I was last week. It looks much tidier with a K instead of an L hook.

Fumbling toward fitness I made it by Curves thrice, and did 210 miles on the treadmill for 10.64 miles. That puts me back on track from before I got sick. My Curves is closed over the long weekend, but I am hoping to make it twice before then.

One Little Victory On Friday, I reached my 600th workout at Curves. It's a nice milestone, and incentive to keep going.