Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Lame. Weak.

Okay, so the title is actually a quote from one of my favorite South Park episodes, but it's also rather apt for the blog recently, non?

Last week was a little crazy - lots of 12 hour days at the office... the Board of Trustees came to visit and I had to help present on "Student Success Strategies". Went pretty well, I think. It was also the last week that students were able to drop classes or withdraw without receiving failing grades on their transcripts, so that kept me running around. Sometimes the only strategy for success is a timely retreat.

Next week I'll be in Massachusetts for a two-day planning meeting relating to a grant we're working on with 5 other New England colleges. Someone else is driving the van, so at least I'll have a few hours of knitting time along the way. And I get my very own hotel room - oooh aaaah. Right. In any case, I think it's a really neat project and I mostly enjoy the company of the people I'll be going with, so it's all to the good, I suppose.

At home I've been on caulk and spackle patrol. Hoping to get the "medieval" room ready for some paint. The walls are in such bad shape that I hate to expend the energy until we can afford to replace the drywall and maybe - I dunno - cover the subflooring? But I simply cannot live with the faux stonework, reddish-brown walls, and sky blue ceiling for much longer. I mean, could you? I thought not.

I'll try to remember to take before and after pics. Too bad we already took down the wall sconces and the dungeon door. (You only think I'm kidding here.)

Regardless, we still love the house bunches and bunches. Just needs some tweaking... and to stop leaking in the upstairs bathroom. But that's another story.

Friday, October 19, 2007

More blather

I know, I know. I'm tragically boring lately. So sue me.

I've decided that the one major benefit of not having a lot of furniture is not having to move it when painting and prying things off the walls.

Now if only I could find more time to work on my little projects around the house. This full time job thing really gets in the way. However, next weekend will be my last Saturday at the yarn shop, so at least I'll have 2 day weekends to play with.

Tomorrow, however, I'm heading out on the residential life's weekly bus trip. I'm going with one of the math profs (who is also in my poker circle) to Salem, MA. Just in time for Halloween, eh? All we have to do in regard to the students is to count heads when we get on the bus at the college, and then count heads in the evening before we leave Salem. Hopefully it will be as easy as it sounds.

I'm kind of looking forward to the change in scenery - especially since I don't have to drive and will be able to knit.

My painting plans will just have to wait a bit longer.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Gimping along

It's been a busy week. Of course, that might be obvious from the total lack of posting here...

I have finally seen all but about five of the students I'm supposed to be monitoring. I'm still monitoring them, of course, just not firsthand. But the things I hear... oy vey.

I stained the two windowpane end tables I bought from a local guy via Craigslist. We don't actually have a local list, but the one for Burlington covers the whole state more or less. Mostly less, unless you're in the Burlington or Montpelier areas. But in the process of sitting on the garage floor and staining them, I managed to throw out my back. Joy. So they are still waiting for the coat of polyurethane. But I am gimpified by the unexpected bursts of pain whenever I do something crazy... like twist from the waist.

My mom and the older of my baby sisters came up for a quick visit. They brought my old IKEA desk that I got when I was 12 - it's kind of beat up, but beat up furniture is better than no furniture right now, so I'm happy to see it again. They also brought an old maple dining room table from one of our dead relatives. It needs major refinishing, but is otherwise in great shape. We also have three more sets of "stackable" bookshelves and some metal chairs for the back porch. This is way more exciting to me than it would have been a year ago.

Prior to their visit, I managed to talk Jay into a trip down to the booming metropolis of West Lebanon, NH so we are about $800 poorer, but now own a 26" flat screen TV, a shop vac, new pillows, large microwavable bowls, and fabric for curtains. My mom very kindly volunteered to make said curtains, so they are now hanging in our living room, covering the hideous purpley-red paint smears on the wooden trim left by the previous owners' paint job.

However, we also looked through the photos from the "history of the house" file that the previous owners left for us, and the house had been a wreck when they bought it 15 years ago. Underlying structure was there, but the walls and windows and everything else was pretty well trashed. So as sketchy as I think some of the cosmetic details are, considering what they started with, it's still fairly impressive.

In non-house-related news, we also took them to the big corn maze nearby. Beautiful weather Sunday, only took us an hour and a half to get through (which is about average), and we bought a bunch of preserves from the local memorial orchard which raises money for ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) research. My fridge now holds dilly beans, fresh salsa, and wild blueberry jam. Yummy.

Anywho... I should be working on my research into effective practices in basic skills instruction at the college level. Much more interesting than it sounds, I assure you.

Monday, October 01, 2007

No Shock

Finally got the deposit back from ye olde landlady. Of course, she told me that despite our previous understanding, she was keeping the 2nd half of the month's rent because her new tenants weren't able to move in right away like she thought they would be. (And this is our problem because...?)

But frankly, I'm so happy to be done with her (Except for the fact that we work together... sort of) that I don't even really care. Not having to deal with her brand of insanity except in a purely professional setting is fricking priceless. Or at least worth the $325 that she's keeping. Or so I'm telling myself.

How the hell did we live with her for 2 years?

It feels good to be free from renting. Very very good.