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Showing posts from March, 2010

Going to the Bayou

Apologies to those on my e-mail list who also read my blog, but I couldn't NOT post this here. I actually could not post it until now, although I wrote and sent this message on March 13.

Shawn has accepted a position at Louisiana State University! We will be moving from New York to Baton Rouge in early August and are really looking forward to the next phase of our lives.

Shawn will be an assistant professor with a teaching load of one and one, and he’ll have a lot of great opportunities for collaboration. And the school’s color is purple!

Beyond permanent employment and a clear career path for Shawn, the move to Baton Rouge will provide a home base and some life luxuries I’m really looking forward to: more living space (a real bedroom!), a washer and dryer, and a car. I’m giddy just thinking about the positive changes in store for us, but there’s also a bittersweet feeling about leaving New York that has surprised me.

Our time here has been filled with ups (getting engage…

My Own IT Technician

Last night I spent a couple hours playing with Blogger in Draft and ended up with a new-ish look for this blog. It's wider ... which was one of my main dislikes about the old template choices ... and I tweaked the colors a bit more. I really like the new template options but decided against a photo background. Maybe later.

Next up -- making the home of this blog and doing away with the few outdated pages that live on that domain now. I think I've got the steps to do that, just need to implement them. And it's possible the blog would be down for a couple days, so I'll have to be strategic. The blogspot URL will still work -- just forward to my domain.

I think I can make tabs within the blog and have a static "about" section, or just have my crochet project posts together ... still exploring and mulling. But I think I've convinced myself to stay with blogspot and it's Google-y goodness instead of the hassle of transferring/updating to a W…

Easy Shells in Soft Fern

Green Baby
Originally uploaded by silvermari This blankie ended up smaller than I expected, 28 inches square, but it's so soft that I expect to give it to its intended mom-and-baby anyway. It really is an easy pattern, from the book Dale gave me, and I picked a complimentary border from the same book that worked out really nice.

I have several more projects in the works, found out about some more babies-to-be and placed a little order at Herrschner's. I have the makings of 1-2 more blankets here and no shortage of patterns I want to try. I'm on a roll here!

A Cake for the Day He Was Born

Shawn and Cake 2010
Originally uploaded by silvermari I baked a cake today!

Shawn's birthday is tomorrow. Happy, happy day!

The cake was OK -- a little tough for some reason, probably was over mixed but made from scratch and with LOVE! I got to use my PURPLE Kitchen-Aid mixer. Wedding present for the win.

Click on his photo to see more images from the cake baking process on Flickr.

There's probably a way to use Picasa to show a slideshow of them here, but all this baking tuckered me out. And the basketball games. Yowza! My bracket is a mess. But so fun to watch the games.

There's a chill in the air here - after a warm weekend when we sat outside in Washington Square Park. Crazy weather, but soaking it up anyway.

The Elegance of the Hedgehog

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The language in this book is superb. It seems even better knowing that it was translated from French. The characters are incredible. I felt like I could see them. I forced myself away from my usual gulping of words, paragraphs, pages and savored each brief chapter (one is a single sentence). Certain passages gave me pause, made me think and I'm still ruminating on what it all means, especially with the unexpected ending. Highly recommended. This book was a gift from a colleague.

View all my reviews

Pinwheels in White

close up back side of pinwheels
Originally uploaded by silvermari This is a stunner -- a pieced baby blanket made for my cousin Kelli. It took a lot of time because of the 52 individual motifs and putting them together. The border was a dream and I crocheted backward for the first time (reverse half DC - nice). I can't wait to hear how it goes over at the baby shower this weekend. I got it finished and sent just under the wire!

A Couch


I realize now that I am way TMI with some of the things I tell coworkers. And yet I'm stifled in others (not by my own choosing). Will be glad when this is behind me and my message is no longer controlled by others.

Ever heard of Walker Coon Hounds? I hadn't until Shawn's buddy suggested we get one. Oh brother. Puppies are cute though.

Shawn is activating my new SIM card to use in my old phone and de-activating the SIM card that's in the lost/stolen phone. I'm not sure if it was just lost in the dishes when the table was cleared or if someone picked it up and didn't turn it in to lost and found. I didn't have an "ICE" (in case of emergency) contact ... and the only number labeled other than a name is "WORK" ... so if it is ever found maybe someone will call work. Dummie returns, and I'm going to put it behind me. Things fade with time so this will be less awful later.

Another lovely mental break down is that I forgot the cord for my …


I'm on the train to NYC. Acela wifi hasn't done much besides stress me out. I did get to catch up on my non-work blog feeds. I have been WAY off reading my work feeds. A lower priority than production.

I am exhausted -- totally and completely, as always after the big day of events. I'm even more upset because of the phone situation. It's 100% my fault, but dishonest people don't make things easier when I make mistakes like this.

Shawn was able to turn on something called "family map" to see where the phone was. And he could see it was in Arlington, VA. So either a waiter pocketed the phone when clearing the table or (less likely) it fell in the cab (I split the first cab from the auditorium to the hotel, so I had to slide across and had my purse and backpack). The auditorium people said a guest must have taken it (I know they can't actually do anything about the wait staff but it would have been nice to admit it). And would it even be theft if it was …

come uppance

lost my phone. very distraught. had it all day and must have left it on the table at the dinner. it's on vibrate so even if it were in something or someone picked it up (or if it fell out in the taxi?) it wouldn't ring.

i have a lot of expletives to say. but it's just a phone and will be a hassle to replace but whatever, i can do it. i will just be glad to figure something out.


i got my come uppance (?) because i was teasing someone about picking something up/forgetting something. and then i go and do this. i'm so tired and upset.

Guitar World

Being in Dupont Circle takes me back in time a little bit. That was the main subway stop during my DC summer internship (gasp, NINE years ago ... surely that's not right, but it is).

I would ride the bus from the Georgetown dorms and walk to my internship office. (If I'm remembering correctly I did not take the subway every day, although I could be wrong.)

There's the guitar shop where David found strings ... David the ringer for Justin Timberlake. Wonder what happened to him.

And the Starbucks where I figured out that what I really like to drink -- mocha frappuccino (can you say sugar rush?) and first ate an espresso brownie. (Don't judge, I'm from the middle of nowhere! Starbucks was a big deal to me when I was 20!)

Everything came together swimmingly for tomorrow. I know I'll have trouble sleeping tonight, but tomorrow night's sleep will be BLISS.


Checked into the hotel in DC for the work event. Was quite the ordeal to get here ... an hour behind schedule and just ... yech. I didn't plan food so got super super hungry.

As a member of this hotel reward thing I get a "raid the honor bar" thing -- $10 worth of free honor bar stuff. Oh man, I was so hungry and took a look through the offerings. There was a King Size Snickers bar -- a COLD king size Snickers bar. You'll be proud to know that I abstained and managed to get to a restaurant (where I had a hamburger, but still...). I wish there were a way to ask for a "no sugar" or "low sugar" honor bar. Or maybe I should have just said no thanks to the key. I don't want to leave the free $10 of food though -- probably enough for one bottle of water. Oh brother.

The hotel room itself is SWANK. Bigger than our apartment (minus the kitchen). There's a seating area with a couch -- a PURPLE couch. OMG! The bed is huge and plush. The TV is ginorm…

Snit Fit

Technology is really killing me. Today my router/modem/something decided to randomly block all access to my work VPN and email server. So for about two hours I was effectively offline and using gmail to work.

And now that the connection is done, whatever the IT guy did when he remotely accessed my system wiped out my Firefox settings. The font looks different (I even reset it and don't know how to get it to look right) and ALL my bookmarks -- pouf, gone. Luckily most of them are on my Firefox on another computer and/or are Google Bookmarks that are not browser-specific, but BIG dud to see my carefully laid out bookmark toolbar wiped out. Slowly rebuilding it, but that's not a big deal BECAUSE I finally got the new work computer I'd been promised for more than half a year and would need to transfer bookmarks anyway.

I turn on said laptop (finally making sense for working remotely, two years later) and see my login name as Mary. I flipped out (I was already dealing with the …

Weirdness Waits

Correspondent to the crazies?

I got a letter yesterday -- to this address although the apartment was incorrect. Mysterious return address in Queens.

Reading the letter ... it's from someone at church. I can't tell if the church gave her my address (my checks have the old apartment number on them, so it's impossible for me to get them to understand I've moved because they base everything on the money, honey) or if she gave the letter to the church office to address (different ink and the handwriting looks a little different on the address itself, although I'm not entirely sure).

Whatever the case, the letter talks about Stillwater, Oklahoma, and begs me to call her. (My name and former church were listed in the bulletin when I transferred my membership ... and yes, I didn't transfer membership to either my Maryland or Virginia churches ... and I should have joined the NYC church sooner, but hindsight, 20-20 and all that.)

The letter asked to call between 1 pm an…

A Violet Affair

The NYU Women's Basketball team didn't do as well as we hoped in the season, although I'm sure they're feeling it too. Anyway, they didn't make it in the NCAA D3 tournament and so are playing in some type of local tournament? They're seeded 6th, but will play in the championship game tomorrow. We went to the semi-final tonight because it was local -- in Hoboken, just a Path train ride away.

Getting there was easy ... empty car on the train that showed up right as we swiped our Metro cards. Finding the gym was a little trickier, but we had plenty of time and the 20-ish minute walk wasn't bad -- especially with views of the skyline across the Hudson. I don't think I'll ever tire of looking at that!

The game itself was a winner. The gym was quiet ... and actually smaller than the gym in Indiahoma, OK, where we played our knees out on the ridiculous cement-based floor. It was a neutral site, in that the other team was from a different school too. And th…

Reviews: Two Memoirs

Prairie Tale: A Memoir by Melissa Gilbert
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I bought this at The Strand - the newly released paperback version. Never heard about it when it was first released. It's interesting because she's a celebrity, but not very well written -- some weird errors/inconsistencies in how names are spelled. And I kept wanting Rob Lowe to show up again at the end. I really wanted her to end up with her first boyfriend. Other things were glossed over, and I hated that she didn't even mention her sister Sara's success, or explain why Sara used her last name, although they are sisters via their mother. It was a ridiculously fast read because it is written at a low level, but I liked it enough and it was probably better than reading a gossip mag, since it was likely mostly true, at least as true as her memory could produce.

House Rules by Rachel Sontag
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Another day, another memoir. This girl's life was awful, in the psychological torment she…

Multitasking Fool

Randomly, what I was doing last night almost simultaneously: crocheting, watching TV and reading a book.

I would crochet while watching the show (only 7 motifs left before I can put the baby blanket together!), and then on commercials would read.

Probably not healthy at all. I'm not so much concentrating on anything these days but just skimming the surface -- to get the book read, the blanket crocheted or the TV show watched.

Am I enjoying the act of doing these things?

Probably not as much as I would if I did things one at a time. Perhaps an experiment in my future to be more deliberate and separate my activities.


Yeah, staying away from blogging has been more of a forced thing than an "ah, no blog to write" kind of feeling.

Yesterday on the way home from the gym I had a moment ... a happy to be alive, to be able to walk, to breathe, to exercise, to live, to love, and on and on. Bee-bopping to my music down the city sidewalks. I even put a happy spin on the broken elevator and having to walk up 8 flights of stairs (my butt got an extra workout)!

During work I am LESS grateful and introspective. I don't know when I got SO MEAN to people (oh yeah, I've always been this mean). I know I should be grateful to be employed at all ... eh.

I have a canker sore in the back of my throat. It is the worst, and may be the beginnings of a sore throat, although here's hoping it's just a sore that goes away. Be glad I don't take a picture of it, because I really could and it would GROSS YOU OUT!

Webcamming tonight though and I'll for sure show my Owen boy. He's always showi…