A Bit Lost and a Lot Damaged…

October 1, 2014

So I posted yesterday from a college presentation in a hotel up in La Jolla after reporting the girlchild’s car stolen (OK, the boychild might argue that it is HIS car, and I would truthfully tell both of them that it is MY car that they are allowed to drive and apparently allow to be stolen). Yes, it was locked. My brain had hit stress overload about two hours prior and was quickly self-destructing, as that little section that asserts control started pushing all the bad shit into the corner and blocking it off…”You can’t see that. It’s not there.” My counselor says I should just deal with one day at a time right now…I think yesterday I managed the Next Five Minutes at a time. And it worked. Honestly. We managed everything, the sheriffs (is that a word? It sounds wrong) were at my house at 10 PM, we ate dinner in there somewhere, because I had the brains to prep it before we left for the presentation, and did I grade anything last night? Ha. You know the answer to that AND the swear words I would apply to it. Insert here.

I did manage about 40 minutes of fabric last night. Zonked out and woke up too early to the girlchild’s ride to school (thank god for friends), drove off to my school and completely lost it. Understand there are some other major things going on that didn’t help. Made it to school, got everything under control. School is a good place to be when you’re freaking out, because you can’t spare the brain power to actually Freak Out. You have too many kids in your class, too many fires to put out, too much to manage to completely lose it. Trust me. I know this. I survived last year precisely because of that.

And during 7th period, girlchild texted me (in all caps) that they had found the car. That it had not been shipped to Mexico for parts (it’s one of those cars, old, but useful). That it had not been damaged. A couple things were stolen, but nothing of huge import, and it’s drivable. And the other major situation semi-resolved itself as well by the end of the day, and all that crap that was standing on my shoulders and JUMPING up and down…it was gone. Mostly. Better.

So I went to the gym and I ate and I finished my book for book club tomorrow night and I graded a little bit and then I cut out pieces, because I still have this crazy goal to have that all done this week…

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The top bin has the pieces I haven’t cut (an awful lot of them), the middle one is stuff that’s cut out, and the bottom one is trash, which I hold on to for a bit, just to make sure I didn’t throw a piece in there by accident (it happens). I got a lot done tonight…I’m about 5 hours in. I guessed what? I don’t remember. Fifteen hours? Aargh. Not happening by Friday, that’s for sure. I’m getting there, but not fast enough. My plans for the weekend? Grading papers, progress reports, watching soccer, going to the gym, and dealing with this quilt. Nothing else. I have something else I will do if I am far enough along, but I suspect I won’t be. So now my goal is to have everything cut out by the end of day Saturday, hopefully even sorting the pieces Saturday, so I can start ironing Sunday. If I can get it ironed by the 17th? I might be OK. I will still have to pinbaste that weekend and then start quilting.

I’m going to be gone for Houston at the end of the month, so I lose three days…three good days, of course, because I’m going to Houston with my mom to the Celebrating Silver opening…I got my catalog yesterday…

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It was nicely packaged with a silver bow and a silver padded envelope. It looks like it will be a nice exhibit…

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I’m going to remember to bring my catalog with me this time so I can have the artists sign. There will be a few artist walk and talks, but I will only be able to do Friday at 2 PM. Stop by and say hi if you’re around. I will also hopefully be at the SAQA meetup the night before, assuming we don’t miss any flights. I will also be at the Visions opening next weekend, even though I didn’t get in (because I rarely do) and the SAQA Shades of Passion opening on Friday next week in Poway as well, although running late. I guess October is art opening month. So that cuts into my working time. Plus I’m trying to make sure girlchild gets to all the college presentations that she wants to go to…she’s doing it so differently than the boychild, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing.

Anyway. After the stress of the last 36 hours, it was nice to just sit in the quiet tonight and cut things out while watching bad vampire television. My brain basically shut down…well, except for the part that was questioning the bad science on the teevee. I’m relieved about the car…trying to buy another car at this point is just not on the list of things I can deal with…hell, I can’t deal with hanging the TV on the wall or fixing the door handle for real. Maybe I can go back to planning one day at a time now, instead of 5 minutes. You never know. I’m trying to dial down the overload with school, totally using my teacher’s aide as much as I can (he’s awesome, by the way) and not taking on too much. Ha. Yeah. That’s always a joke. But I’m trying.

I suspect that’s all I can do at the moment. Continue to try, to move a little bit each day, to find sanity and laughter and goofiness in every day. I stalked a 6th grader today who was talking to himself…followed him for a while until he noticed, jumped a bit, and then giggled. I’m amazed by how many kids know my name, even though they’re not mine. I’m glad to be finding some of my goofball self again. Slowly but surely she’s coming back. The part that dances in stores and sings at the top of my lungs in the mall and chases kids all over the quad. That person. She needs to be around more. She’s OK. Wow. It really hurts to say that. Because I know she was gone for so long. Hidden. Hiding. Lost. Damaged. And she’s still a bit lost and a lot damaged, but she’s ready to dress up like a painting and ride a bike in combat boots and hike like a zombie. If the universe could ramp down the car abductions and other crap, that would be a plus.

Maintain, Dammit. Maintain.

September 28, 2014

Deep breaths. Keep thinking of the positives. I finished ironing last night (it was 2 in the morning). It took 14 hours and 14 minutes to pick all those fabrics, about 3 hours more than I had predicted. At one point, all I had left were these…

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and I considered stopping, because it was freakin’ late and I was tired and I’ve been fighting a hormone/weather headache on and off for 4 days and it was back (it’s back now too…making me think stress is the third arm of it, the part whacking at my brain right now). But I thought…fuck. I’m ALMOST FUCKING DONE. Just do it. If that doesn’t tell you more about who and how I am, I don’t know what will.

Cutting out tree parts is a pain in the ass, because they take a huge piece of fabric and don’t fit together well. It’s time-consuming…

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and hard to find big enough pieces of fabric in my stash. But I did it. Ninety-four fabrics later…

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There they all are. Heavy on the grays, strangely. So I sort of met my deadline on that and now need to cut them all out by Tuesday. Ha! I might need to revise that.

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I’ve started, sure, but I am so freakin’ buried in schoolwork right now. Trying to tread water, keep head up and breathing. Deep breaths. Meditating every day at the moment, which yes, I should be doing anyway, but the fabric choosing was taking care of that mindset until Friday. Friday things started to implode in my head. I’m overwhelmed. I need to step back and make my lists and deal with one day at a time. I can’t lump it all together and try to deal with it all at once. I can’t even go Big Picture at the moment.

I’m 37 hours into this quilt. Cutting out should take a while. Apparently on a similarly sized quilt, it took 13 hours to iron and 15 to trim the fabrics. If that’s realistic and I have 13 hours to go, I’m not going to get anywhere near finished until next weekend. Then I’ll start ironing. Maybe that’s my goal: to be ready to iron sometime next weekend. (Kathryn: no hiking, reduce social events as much as possible? Fuck.) I’m really busting my butt on this and at work and it’s starting to show. I’m really incredibly tense (chiropractor this week!) and I have no mental release really. I’m so deep into the have-to list that I cannot get focus. This week is ugly too. They all are. Who am I kidding?

Anyway. College stuff is paid. Boychild still doesn’t have a job. Girlchild is currently waiting for me to come help her paint her parking spot (she’s a senior), but I have to go grocery shopping first. I remembered to buy dog food yesterday, but forgot the cat food. Midnight broke into the food cupboard in protest and ripped open the other cat food bag, the one she doesn’t like. I regularly have to duct tape holes in cat food bags because of her. I still have one class of tests to grade and I have 5 kids who don’t really read or write English who honestly need a curriculum at about a kindergarten level, but with 7th grade content. I haven’t fully planned this week’s lesson yet, and I’m about to blow off any connection to technology, just to save my sanity.

But I finished the God-Damned Fucking Ironing.

I am the crazy-haired woman all in black who is standing in the middle of the produce section at the grocery store in meditation pose, eyes closed, deep breathing. You should just walk around me. Maybe give me a hug while you do it.

Ironed Flesh

September 23, 2014

A typical afternoon after school during the Fall soccer season: Our heroine lounges on the couch, freshly made hot cup of tea at hand, grading in a pile next to her, studiously at work. The phone rings and hysterical screeching emanates, so loud that the nearby windows vibrate with the sound. Girlchild is at her soccer practice after coaching little girls at the wonders of the game, and her father has brought her the bag with all her equipment, but the giant hole in the side means one of her shoes has fallen out…somewhere between the couch and the driveway…of her father’s house. Sigh. Our heroine stands up, considers whether to re-engage the bra-strapping structure that she was quite relieved to have removed, and gets into the car, figuring no one is looking at her boobs anyway. What the fuck. Whoops. Lost character there. She drives to her ex’s house, raids it for the shoe (it took a while; it was wedged between two cushions) and drives to the soccer field, where she slowly drives past the field, waving the shoe in the air until one of the parents runs over and fetches it, delivering it to the girlchild.

You think I jest. This is unfortunately how it goes sometimes. That was after my second cup of tea and 3 Motrin, trying to banish the giant headache brought on by minimum day schedule, blood sugar affected by minimum day schedule, and a hellish back-and-forth with adults that should not be allowed in a work environment. As teachers, we seem to have fewer protections against stupid adults (including the ones we work with) than in other businesses. I am now department chair, not by choice, but because it was the best thing to do for the survival of the department (and my sanity). Next year, there will be more options and I should not have to be in charge. For now…it sucks, but it is. I also finally went off on the tech lady who keeps telling me No Duh stuff, like “did you check their email and password?’ Um. No. I assumed that if a 12-year-old can’t log in, that they did it right and I don’t need to test it myself. And I wasn’t smart enough to check my OWN password list, instead of relying on them to provide that information. Because I’m not smart or anything. Granted, many teachers aren’t tech savvy, but some of us are, and it’s not in your best interest to piss off those who have a clue what they’re doing. Don’t assume we’re all idiots and talk to us like that. Fucking condescending tech people.

So yeah. It was a meditation day. In class. My kids were really the least of my troubles. Today they were the easiest part of my job, which is saying something.

I just took on another art entry too…due by January 1. I think I took it on. I might be clinically insane on that one. Because there’s one I want to do for February as well. There is no rest for the crazed.

I really need to go to bed, instead of trying to write this tonight. Suffice it to say that I will continue tomorrow morning, after more caffeine has crossed my non-ruby lips, and hopefully I will have something pithy to say about the million fleshy pieces I ironed tonight (and the million I did NOT).

It’s morning. I wish I felt rested, but it is not my way. I did finally start ironing last night around 10…because I graded papers and cooked dinner and dealt with girlchild’s breakdown over a variety of crazy things, not the least of which was that the ACT test that she took a little over a week ago? They lost the test booklets somewhere, so they all have to retake the test. She’s livid (her word). I’m kind of amazed. How does one lose such a thing? And what is their home address? Because I know a few hundred high-school kids who want that.

Anyway, part of the issue was solved last night, but we still have to deal with the ACT…in her crazy schedule, she doesn’t have a spare 5 hours lying around to retake a test. So we’ll have to jiggle some things.

Anyway, I finished sorting all the fleshy bits and ironing them down…

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It’s kind of like a crazy jigsaw puzzle. That will never fit together right. That’s one of 7 in the run…plus fingernails and toenails. I haven’t dealt with all the other stuff yet…it’s piled up at the back of the table…

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It includes eyeballs, hair, hearts, arteries, lungs, nipples, lips…anything that’s not the standard flesh colors. I’ll start those tonight…so although I’m in the 800 box, I haven’t finished stuff from the 300s yet…so I have no idea how much I have left. I did iron for almost 2 hours last night (I was in the zone), which is why I’m so tired this morning. Because I can’t just stop ironing and go straight to bed. My brain’s moving a bit too fast. I have to let it ramp down, read for a bit, space out a little. It takes almost an hour…sigh.

Katie and Babygirl are not currently friends…this standoff was while I was trying to iron, with Katie standing right where I need to be. She won’t move when you tell her, or at least, she won’t if there’s a cat involved…so I have to physically pull her out of there.

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Babygirl likes the iron because it’s warm.

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I would think she would back off a bit when I’m actually ironing, but she doesn’t. She looking pissed off…well, she always looks pissed off…but we did comb her fur, because boychild said we had to, and she quite happily whacked away at the both of us with her claws while we were doing it. Amazingly, we are both scratch free, so she didn’t really mean it.

So 7 1/2 hours into the ironing. Still progressing. Yesterday was very successful. Grading a whole assignment got done, ironing got done. I wish I could guarantee the same each day this week, but…yeah.

This is the best part of Wonder Under…

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(That’s sarcasm) Yup. The fusible sometimes releases from the paper. I am really obsessive apparently and lay out the pieces of WU and try to match them up to paper pieces that are the same shape. If I can’t figure it out, I just retrace them. I have not been good about keeping my WU in plastic bags this time around, and I can tell…it’s releasing easier. But it’s still the easiest method for me to do what I do. The two pieces on the right? I didn’t number them. I will figure out what they are eventually. Something in the tree.

OK. Today I teach zombies. Or I teach ABOUT zombies. Can’t remember. Might not matter.

Finally Ironing Myself to Fabric…

September 21, 2014

I met my goal. I ironed for three hours. I was really tired and had to rest twice. It makes it sound like I’m running a marathon (kinda am). Brain power needed to color pictures in head and find appropriate fabric colors is apparently quite a large amount. So after soccer and the gym, not much brain power left. Plus haven’t slept much lately. Keep fucking stuff up because of that lack-of-sleep thing. I slept finally Friday and Saturday nights (well, minus middle-of-the-night freakouts), but I feel more tired right now than on school mornings, when I only have 5 hours.

Probably I should avoid ironing myself into the quilt. Hard to do when I’m tired already.

Both kids are texting me this morning. So it’s quiet, but people are talking. Weird, huh? I haven’t had enough caffeine to deal with either. Too much information crossing.

So I started by cleaning up this space yesterday…

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Because that’s where I lay out the Wonder Under pieces while I’m trying to figure out what to iron them to…I was trying to get that done before the soccer game, but it never goes the way you want, does it?

I managed to get a pile of fabrics on the ironing board…

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(moved from one place to another…very efficient) and then later got them into piles by color and realized I have way too much fabric at the moment. I know that doesn’t make sense. I do keep buying fabric, but I don’t buy a lot at a time, and mostly it gets used up in backgrounds and backings and bindings and sleeves, but apparently I’m still adding more than I’m subtracting…something to do with how little of a particular fabric I use at a time? Or they are breeding.

So I didn’t start actually ironing until 9 PM.

Not particularly efficient sometimes. Really. I had all day. I’m not sure what happened.

Well, this happened…

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They won 3-1…and they made all 4 goals (whoops). Between drive time and having to be there 45 minutes early, I usually lose 3 1/2 hours per game. iPhone Sep 21 14 066 small

Girlchild headed the ball into the goal, her first header goal.

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She did the happy dance. The ball on the right comes over and she’s the one in red in front of the goal. Right in front of the goalie and her white-shirted teammates, who probably blocked her getting to the girlchild. Yes, I forgot my camera at home, so these are all phone pictures.

Then we came home and there was some of this…

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Because Katy needed it apparently (apparently her name is not spelled the way I thought, and she used to be KatyGirl, and that was way too much)…

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Or girlchild needed it. Hard to say.

Once she was gone and it was quiet again, I set up the room the way I like it…so I can see the drawing while I’m picking stuff out…Sep 21 14 007 small

and because apparently I have to have something underfoot and Calli was at the other house, Katy stepped up and laid her chubby little body out for me to step over. She is pretty mellow, though, and will not freak out when I step over her. She will follow me out of the room 700 times though if I leave to get my tea or pee.Sep 21 14 008 small

It’s not ironing unless I’m stepping over a dog. And piles of crap. You’d think I could solve the piles-of-crap issue.

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Guess I will figure that out the hard way. Yes, I’m still watching Star Trek. It really is awful dialogue at the moment, The Next Generation. I keep almost bailing on it, but I love Picard too much to leave him.

It’s amazing. I have so many flesh-colored fabrics and I keep coming back to the same ones, time after time. I try to branch out, but trying to get tones that go in a nice range is difficult. This one’s too brown, this one’s too pink, too peach.

This is what I’ve used so far…grays, reds (there was a heart), lots of pinky colors…

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I only got about 185 pieces ironed last night…actually, no, it was more than that because I was pulling from other bins for the scales…

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I stopped because it was after midnight, I was tired, and the next two things were very complicated birds. And I don’t know what color I want them to be. I could go for realism or crazy. Tempted by crazy. But still trying to color it in my head. Probably going to wait a bit before I start. Maybe. Blue and orange? Purple? It’s gotta pop on the background…

Anyway. It’s progress. Three more hours of ironing is my goal today, but I need to grade things too and grocery shop and plan for the week, so that could be problematic. In fact, I just went off and emailed the parents at school, because the kids have an assignment due tomorrow at 9 AM, and I suspect by my Edmodo stats (which I can unfortunately check on my phone, my iPad, and my computer) that many have forgotten. Of course, the app keeps crashing, so who the hell knows? Ah yes. 57 out of 140 submitted. Sigh. That is unfortunate. Easy to grade if they don’t turn it in, though. Man, that’s cynical.

The transition to technology is not without its issues. OK. Moving on with my day. Might be awake enough to deal. Hard to say.

Holding It in My Head…

September 19, 2014

So I’m done with that heinous task, the cutting out of 1070 pieces of Wonder Under. Total, it took 7 hours and 23 minutes. I’m noticing my estimates are fairly accurate in terms of hours, but not so accurate in terms of days. I think that’s because I overestimate my ability to blow off everything else. I forget about sleeping and eating and peeing. That shit takes time. It took me 5 nights. I did 3 hours yesterday. The shortest day, I did 40 minutes. Last night, I had quilt class, so I cut out for an hour and a half, and then I came home and decided I wasn’t going to bed until I was done. I even thought, only briefly though, that I should sort them all last night too, but I decided that was crazy talk. Because it was. It was after midnight when I finished.

It will take me another hour to sort them, so I’ll try to do that this afternoon/evening, depending on what other tasks arise. I really need to grade assignments. I was going to type ‘papers,’ but a goodly portion of what my students turn in at the moment is on the web, not in my hand. I finally got Google Classroom! Yay! I don’t know if it will solve all my problems, but it might solve a couple. Now I just need to find time to set it up and populate classes, which is complicated by the fact that more than half my students don’t have names in my Gmail. Which is maybe Hapara’s fault? Or Google’s? Or probably it’s just a planetary shift issue and will adjust when the magnetic poles flip and I become Queen of the Hinterland.

I am NOT sarcastic.

So finding time to grade stuff has always been a problem for me. I’m debating letting my teacher’s aide grade warmups. The girlchild does, when she has time (she has no time at the moment, and did not clean up the living room yesterday when I asked her to because Math. That was the answer. I don’t understand how Math can stop you cleaning. Art? I can understand that, but not Math). I can’t have him grade anything that requires me to check for understanding, though, and warmups are sometimes like that. Girlchild knows to hand me papers that trouble her. I don’t know. I can’t decide. Sigh! Poor guy; he has been very patient with me. I think I scare the crap out of him sometime…I wonder why certain kids want to be my aide. It can’t be fun.

Anyway, here’s the finished pile of very exciting, artistic, tiny little pieces of Wonder Under.

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You wish you had some of this. Admit it.

This means fabric tonight! Which yes, means I did manage to go to Rosie’s yesterday afternoon and pick out background fabric…

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This bright blue/purple called out to me. Some others called out to me as well, so I stood there and stared at the fabric that called and half closed my eyes and visualized the drawing imposed on the fabric, and then started coloring it in in my head. If it’s blue, am I using a lot of water in the quilt? If so, what will that look like? What things in the drawing are touching the background? What have to lace their way across it, like the trees I do? How will the contrast work? Trees can be problematic…browns tend to be medium range for trees (at least when I do them), so if the background is too close to a medium range, the tree won’t be as obvious. Same with dirt. Sometimes that’s a good thing…sometimes it’s not. What about the leaves? What about the main figures in the quilt? Will they show up well or fade into the background? What do I want them to do?

To the casual quilt-shop observer, I’m meditating in front of a row of bolted fabric. Well, you’re kinda right. It is a form of meditation. Using my brain to process the image. Who needs a fucking computer?

Yes, I also bought some other fabrics, some light/whites for eyeballs and fingernails (seriously) and two Halloweeny fabrics with anatomical hearts and skeletons and the like. I thought Rosie’s looked pretty empty of fabrics…maybe because Market is coming up? I don’t know. Lots of empty shelves. It disturbed me. I’ve been going to Rosie’s since I started quilting in 1987. That’s a long time…and yes, it’s my favorite San Diego store. There’s a quilt store closer to home (it’s actually moving further north, but will still be about the same distance) that I rarely frequent. It’s not got a lot of fabrics. It caters to class-takers, those that like to buy rulers. I only have two rulers. Actually, I think I have a couple more than that, but only because people give them to me. I’m still using the same two rulers I’ve had for probably 25 years. I don’t cut a lot of straight lines. I don’t take any classes really either. At the opening last week, someone offered me a brochure for a local art facility that does classes, and I’m thinking, um, yeah, I’m kinda past that stage. I might take a mural-painting class or a graffiti class at this stage in my life, but I don’t need to do a whole lot else. I’ve already done it.

So I’m trying to be excited about the next stage…it’s usually the hardest AND the most relaxing stage of the quilt…picking fabrics. It’s definitely the most creative, after doing the original drawing. I’ve been trying colors out in the drawing in my head. This one is pretty easy. Some are much harder. I can see this one pretty clearly though. So hopefully that will make it easier. Realistically, there’s social stuff I could be doing in the next week (I actually went searching for some), but I can’t. I need to get this done. I don’t have money to go do a lot of stuff either, so it’s better if I don’t. If I can get 3 hours done tomorrow and another 3 on Sunday (my goal), then 5 during the week…if I get too tired for the ironing portion, I can work on cutting things out instead. I’m still aiming for Sept 30 to be done with fabric and ready to iron. Gasp.

It’s nice to have a plan. Unfortunately, as we know, it will get blown up at some point, but at least I try. I’m being very hermit-like and antisocial trying to get this thing done. That part is depressing, but it’s necessary at the moment. When it cools off and soccer mellows out, maybe I can start hiking again. I would go next week, but am buried in meetings and a back-to-school night. Can’t really hike by myself at 9 PM.

I think it’s Friday. I’m onto the next part of the quilt. I made progress. Holding that in my head for now.

Dead Ends

September 18, 2014

Sometimes I feel like the days are running into each other. I woke up this morning, no idea what day it was. No clue. Couldn’t tell Wednesday from Tuesday from Thursday. Then the girlchild got into the shower, so that narrowed it down, but only slightly. Do I have school today? Do I have to get up? The alarm hasn’t gone off yet, and she could be up early for soccer, so that didn’t help figure the day out. My brain is so foggy in the morning from dreaming, from the REM sleep that surrounds me because I went to bed too late. I should really do something about that, but I have a hard enough time getting stuff done when I sleep this little…I know, not a healthy decision, but…I’m at my most awake from about 10 PM on.

So the end of the world happened yesterday: my mom texted me. She’s been anti-text for so long, I was seriously confused when I saw it pop up on my phone. Amusing.

I went to yet another technology training yesterday, a new app we’re piloting in our district (I’m still trying to figure out if I care enough to use it, or how it might be useful, because if we don’t pay for it, then I’ve dumped a lot of time and resources into it for nothing), and the official district people were there, not IT exactly, but the computer experts from the teacher realm, so I showed them my weird Google/Gmail issues…and they admitted that I am cursed. Google really does hate me. I have confirmation. Seriously, it is behaving badly. I have one more thing I can try, and then? Well? I’m left twisting in the wind, I think. But I do wonder if my Google Classroom issue is related to this. I did slam her assumption that I was using another Gmail account and that’s why none of it was working. Yes, I realize the majority of teachers are not very tech-savvy and do stupid shit like that all the time. I’m not one of them sweetheart. I understand which account I’m supposed to be using. I sat next to her WITH my computer and went through and told her to tell me if I was doing something wrong. I wasn’t. They admitted my freak status.

Well then. Moving on. She also tried to blame it on my using Firefox at school. I had tried Chrome, but a couple of the district websites don’t work on Chrome, so I switched back, per the instructions of our former tech genius. I use Chrome at home, though, and it didn’t work there either. So I switched into Chrome and showed her that. Sigh.

The pros from yesterday? I packed up the damn quilt and will ship it this morning. I was focused, although really tired. The heat is getting to me. So that was one thing off the list. I’m working on some of the other things today. I’m going to go get the background fabric today after school, I think. Maybe. If I can pull it off. Store closes early…would have been smart to do it yesterday, but after being at school for 10 hours, I was kinda done. I haven’t decided what color the background should be yet. I tend to pick darker colors because I do a lot of flesh-colored quilts, and they pop on the dark. I don’t like pure black…it tends to read really flat. I prefer dark blues, greens, and purples. Occasionally I push it with a pink or orange background (the orange one is hanging in my office right now, waiting to be completed). I had to schedule it on my calendar. Otherwise I might forget. I’ve been editing my calendar daily, pushing the things I didn’t get to onto the next day every day. SAD! I completed 2.4 tasks yesterday. I really needed it to be 3, but I lost time to getting the ex back to the soccer field after he drove the dizzy girlchild (didn’t eat enough, I think) back after soccer and then I had to go get her gas for her car. I think I’m going to put my foot down on that one. Calculate the gas she uses and just give her the amount. She can fill the damn tank. Yes, I know. Of course she can. It’s just easier sometimes to do it myself. I’m working really hard on delegating this year (my teacher’s aide really appreciates this).

I did more of this…again…

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but only an hour. Yes, that’s a TARDIS in the background. That’s my worry, though…that I’ll only get in an hour of ironing a night, and it’ll take about 10-12 hours, and that’s way too many days. So Saturday and Sunday are important. I have class tonight, so I’ll get a couple of hours of trimming in. I’m at 4 1/2 hours now, but I have most of two yards left to cut, so probably another 3-4 hours. Too many days! But I have grading every day and lesson plans. I can’t ignore all that. I’d like to. Not an option.

I’m also trying to put some of the house issues on the front burner. I told the girlchild yesterday that I needed an hour this weekend (she freaked) to straighten up/clean the house. This after we couldn’t find anywhere to sit and eat dinner, mostly because she just dumps stuff everywhere and never picks it up. A week or so ago, I picked up everything on the couches and put it in a bag and hung it from her bedpost in her room. I’m going to need to do that again, I guess. I keep looking at the house and realizing the boychild will come home in December and I still will not have finished cleaning up from the remodel. My bedroom is still hoarding central with stuff that has no home or that I need time to process. The living room still needs some stuff done so we can put everything away. I don’t know how to push that higher on the to-do list. I run out of time and energy. The thing that screams the loudest is what gets done. Art screams really loud.

Anyway. I’m frustrated at the moment. By everything. Dissatisfied. Not happy with what’s there. Overwhelmed by some things. If the weather cools down a bit, I think that will help. If I can get the girlchild to help out a bit, that would also be useful. If I can get all this Wonder Under done, that might help too. Giant sighs. There’s a path out of this. I just can’t see where it starts. I keep running around and finding the start of a path, but it dead ends in cactus. Or a hole in the ground. Or up against the wall of an ugly building.

Sitting on It

September 17, 2014

It’s OK. All the crap from yesterday is still here, but I am sitting on it. Like you sit on your younger brother when you’re trying to keep him from running away. It’s squirming around a lot and trying to hit at me and yelling for mom, but mostly I can keep it down. I think if I keep getting shit done and keep meditating and keep exercising (oh holy endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin, I worship thee), I might be OK. Did you know that some plant spines and insect venom contain serotonin, causing pain to those that are stung or poked? And some seeds have serotonin in them, causing diarrhea, making the body expel them quicker? Did I tell you I’m writing a sci fi novel about a plant/animal hybrid? I need to know more science to write this book. Seriously. What was I thinking? If it were fantasy, I could just make shit up and pretend the fantastical science backed it up, but in sci fi, it’s gotta be semi-believable.

I’m still doing this…

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It’s taking a long time. Not really. I’m some number of hours in. I don’t know how many. My phone does, but it’s way over THERE. I know I didn’t start until 11, because I was grading papers, after meditating, after eating dinner, after going to the gym, after detention at school. I didn’t do a whole lot else. OK. You’re right. That’s actually a lot.

Fucking balance. Never to be achieved.

It was very hot here yesterday; car registered 106 on the way home from school, after 4 PM. We had a freak rainstorm in the area that hit the house and downed big branches (nothing hit the house), but it barely rained at school, a whopping 2.47 miles away. Today is supposed to be cooler. I wonder if the weather is messing with my mood. I was drained at the gym, unable to muster any emotion at all, but cried all the way home. I often just stand back from that part of my brain and watch it, confused. WTF? Get a handle on it, Kathryn.

I’ve been looking at my schedule, trying to fit a hike in, but there just isn’t time. Too many meetings, tutorials, trainings…the timing sucks. When my brain is doing its worst, I have very little time for social stuff too.

I miss my boy. The girlchild is home so rarely, and when she is, it’s better than it was over the summer, but if she’s hot and tired and I’m hot and tired, there could be screaming. Mostly, though, we are like two ships passing in the night. I see her for 10 minutes before she leaves for soccer. Sometimes that’s all I see. And if I have to spend 3 hours on the computer trying to post things like this…the post about the opening Saturday night…then I feel guilty for not hanging out with her. And she complains too. At least the boychild was around most of the time. If I was lonely, I could go bug him. He mostly tolerated that. Now I have to think that it’s three hours later there and I probably shouldn’t be texting him at 1 AM his time.

Anyway. Busy at school. Busy making art. Busy trying to catch up with all the stuff that needs doing that I never have the energy to actually do, which explains the house.

Even the cats were having issues with the heat.

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Actually, Midnight was mad because I took the table runner off the coffee table, because girlchild left her cup of water on there (again) and Midnight rolls around a lot on the table, just stretching her body out and eventually knocking everything over and pushing it off onto the floor, so the table was sopping wet when I got home and I had to wash everything and dry it off, so her table runner was gone. So she picked the floor to roll around on instead.

OK, my to-do list is calling…it’s a lab day and I need something for homeroom and something for my teacher’s aide to do. I have a list for after school as well, after the training I’m signed up for to learn more tech stuff that will only work half of the time (seriously, that’s what happened yesterday…Google disappeared things and disconnected people and Edmodo acted like a spoiled brat and then Gmail got into it with me and acted like a crazed loon. I’m done.). I’m really looking forward to that.

I guess people like me never really master technology. We fuck with it until we can get it to mostly do what we need it to do, but it’s really lurking around the corner in the dark, waiting for a chance to jump out and knock us down. It was designed by techy boys, and I haven’t had great luck with them either, so it’s not so surprising.

More Wonder Under tonight. No fabric tonight (which reminds me, I don’t even have a background fabric, so I couldn’t pick fabrics if I wanted to…but now I need to schedule a trip to get the background fabric…argh.). First surviving the day.


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