Category Archives: misc

Yea, I exist

Finally got a new battery for my camera… so the pics will start coming in again.

been quite busy with work, lately. working on several projects, a few articles here and there, and a conference presentation. i’m really excited about the conference presentation (no kidding!) although it is a lot of work, but because this is one place where i’m an innovator. see, we have this content management system called Sakai here at work, and not only have i created lots of library handouts n stuff in there, but i’ve been teaching it and using it as a networking tool with my faculty and staff. it’s been fun… but keeping me out of trouble, and out of fun.

i’ve also been lucky enough to get involved with the teaching and learning writing initiative here, and boy, that has been, and will continue to be, a real eye opener! it’s all about creating writing in courses as a learning tool, and i am getting a lot of ideas on how to incorporate writing into my own library sessions, but more than anything this set of workshops will impact my own ability to write. i’m looking forward to implementing some of the things i’ve learned in my next set of writing. we’re basing our sessions around Engaging Ideas by John Bean, which is a great read and full of some neat ideas. this whole writing workshop is inspiring me to write more, in general, so i gather this will mean i’ll be extrapolating here more often, peppering my little bloggy woggy with text in addition to pics of crochet stuffs.

heading off home here in a few days… cant wait! I miss civilized food and i’m eager for breakfast burritos at Millies and the Frontier (my once fav hangout), some Cracker Barrel (a luxury we do without out here. someone please explain that to me, cuz i dont get it), and hanging with the fam. My sis is coming down, of course Dad n Stepmom will be around, and so will my Gramma! it’s actually all in honor of her – she’s turning 90 next week, and we’re all surprising her with a visit! I assume it’s safe to write about that here, as I’m sure Gramma doesnt ever look at my blog. : )

Today is Yarn Lunch… Ruth and I will hang out in the dining hall and encourage our students to come craft with us. It’s chilly today… good day for a snuggly jacket and some yarn to crochet on. Working on a doily right now; size 3 thread and a size 1 steel hook. fun combo.

k, nuff for now. should go put $$$ on my card so I can eat, which I very much want to do right now.

oh, and since this is Random Ramblings of a Crocheting Librarian… here’s some bookmarks I’ve made for an upcoming craft fair. Just to keep it on topic. : )

bookmarks.jpg

You know you’re from New Mexico when…

1. You buy salsa by the gallon.

2. You don’t think it’s weird that everybody stares at you when you walk into the Frontier.

3. You snicker whenever someone from out of state tries to pronounce your last name.

4. You’ve had a school day cancelled because there was half an inch of snow on the ground.

5. You know what an Arroyo is.

6. Your high school’s name was a Spanish word.

7. You still call the ‘Flying Star’ the ‘Double Rainbow’ and it’s still the best place to get dessert in the world.

8. There is a kachina somewhere in your home or yard.

9. You have license plates on your walls, but not on your car.

10. Your favorite restaurant has a chile list instead of a wine list.

11. Your Christmas decorations include “a yard of sand, four cases of small candles and 200 paper bags.”

12. Most restaurants you go to begin with “El” or “Los.”

13. You hated Texans until the Californians moved in.

14. You price-shop for tortillas.

15. You have an extra freezer just for green chile.

16. The tires on your roof have more tread than the ones on your car.

17. You think a red light is merely a suggestion.

18. You believe that using a turn signal is a sign of weakness.

19. You don’t make eye contact with other drivers because you can’t tell how well armed they are just by looking.

20. You think six tons of crushed rock makes a beautiful front lawn.

21. You have to sign a waiver to buy hot coffee at a drive-up window.

22. You ran for state legislature so you can speed legally.

23. You pass on the right because that’s the fast-lane.

24. You have read a book while driving from Albuquerque to Las Cruces.

25. You know they don’t skate at the Ice House and the Newsstand doesn’t sell newspapers.

26. You think Sadies was better when it was in the bowling alley and the Owl Cafe was better before they put in the turn-off.

27. You have used aluminum foil and duct tape to repair your air conditioner.

28. There is a piece of a UFO displayed in your home.

29. You just got your fifth DWI and got elected to the state legislature in the same week.

30. Your swamp cooler got knocked off your roof by a dust devil.

31. You have been on TV more than three times telling about how your neighbor was shot or about your alien abduction.

32. All your out-of-state friends and relatives visit in October.

33. You know Vegas is a town in the northeastern part of the state.

34. You wish you had invested in the orange barrel business.

35. You are afraid to drive through Mora and Espanola.

36. You iron your jeans to “dress up.”

37. You don’t see anything wrong with drive-up window liquor sales.

38. Your other vehicle is also a pick-up truck.

39. Two of your cousins are in Santa Fe, one in the legislature and the other in the state pen.

40. You know the punch line to at least one Espanola joke.

41. You think the Lobos fight song is “Louie, Louie.”

42. You know whether you want “red or green.”

43. You’re relieved when the pavement ends because the dirt road has fewer pot-holes.

44. You can correctly pronounce Tesuque, Cerrillos, and Pojoaque.

45. Your car is missing a fender or bumper (or a turn signal and aligned headlights).

46. You have driven to an Indian Casino at 3 a.m. because you were hungry.

47. You have been told by at least one out-of-state vendor that they are going to charge you extra for “international” shipping.

48. You expect to pay more if your house is made of mud.

49. You can order your Big Mac with green chile.

50. You see nothing odd when, in the conversations of the people in line around you at the grocery store, every other word of each sentence alternates between Spanish and English.

51. You know you will run into at least 3 cousins whenever you shop at Wal-Mart, Sam’s or Home Depot.

52. Tumbleweeds and various cacti in your yard are not weeds. They are your lawn.

53. If you travel anywhere, no matter if just to run to the gas station, you must bring along a bottle of water and some moisturizer.

54. A package of white flour tortillas is the exact same thing as a loaf of bread. You don’t need to write it on your shopping list; it’s a given.

55. At any gathering, regardless of size, green chile stew, tortillas, and huge mounds of shredded cheese are mandatory.

56. Prosperity can be readily determined by the number of horses you own.

57. A tarantula on your porch is ordinary. A scorpion in your tub is ordinary. A poisonous centipede on your ceiling? Ordinary. A black widow crawling across your bed is terribly, terribly common. A rattlesnake is an occasional hiking hazard. No need to freak out.

***************

Uh, yea. : ) Makes me miss home. Green, please?

The Enchanted Unicorn

DH and I went out to do our taxes at the same place his company does their payroll and whatnot, and of course I took some 6″ squares to work on for the CL Granny Square Exchange. While I was there, our tax lady (who was awesome, by the way!) suggested I go by this place called The Enchanted Unicorn, which was nearby. For some unknown reason, DH said he’d subject himself to yarn shopping (maybe he hit his head that morning? Had a fever? Either way I was tempted to ask him, “Who are you, and what have you done with Daniel?” However I shut my yap as I can recognize an opportunity when I see one!) Anyways, back to our story about The Enchanted Unicorn.

It was a neat store full of exquisite fibers from cottons to wools to silk with everything in between. I saw for the first time in my life a Chibi needle, which everyone raves about on CL, I saw a swift and winder, which was cool (I still wind hanks as Gramma taught me – over 2 chairs and by hand), I saw a gianormous needle for broomstick lace and learned a little more about hairpin lace, which I am on fire to learn. I handled tons of lovely yarn, so soft, with bright colors, and I browsed their magazines and pattern books.

However….. and this is a BIG however, one lady kept following me around the store bugging me to learn to knit. I explained to her that I was an accomplished crocheter of 29 years and very dedicated to my handiwork, and that I’d even learned to knit but didnt like it at all. I explained that I have a healthy respect for knitters but that I was thoroughly dedicated to my art of crochet. The result? She continued to follow me around the store, telling me that I should reconsider and take knitting classes and that she would teach me properly. No matter how many times I said, ‘No’ to this woman, she would not let up. I was thoroughly miffed! I felt like my talent as a crocheter was not encouraged nor welcomed at the Enchanted Unicorn.

Boo!!! Hiss!!! Although that store was jam packed with stuff I truly want to acquire, I’ll not go back. Not till I get an apology (yes, I emailed them from their website) and a promise that I could shop there, without harassment, as a crocheter.

: (

The Universe Does Not Want Me To Work Out

sigh… like most Americans, I am not active enough. my 2 primary hobbies, the Internet and crochet, do not lead to much strenuous activity, to say the least, so I go to the gym here at HMC before work in the mornings. today was our first Monday back, and, uh, yeah.

so i get there a little late but still with enough time for a good workout, and as I stand there in the shower, soaped up, I realize i’ve forgotten my towel. you’d think I’d’ve learned from The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy to always have my towel with me, but today you get to call me Arthur Dent.

So thinking fast and on the fly, I decide I can use my gym shirt (which is pretty large to hide my extra poundage due to my mouse potato lifestyle) to dry off. thus, I resume my leisurely soaping and rinsing, having a gay ole time in the warm water.

However… when I’m done showering I shut off the water and think to myself, “Gee, the floor looks unusually shiny.” see, I do not see so well without my glasses on, and I neglect to realize till I’ve turned the water off that the little non skid rubber mat is conveniently covering the drain hole, and although it has little holes itself, without sufficent drainage a lovely little lake is created. where my stuff is. a lake. of water. wet water. yes, do let your imagination run wild at this point. ~sigh~ thankfully I’ve left my clothes on a bench, but everything else, bag, shoes, socks, and yes, my emergency ‘towel’ AKA gym shirt, is sopping wet. made for an interesting attempt at getting ready for work.

needless to say, it’s another manic Monday morning and I’m wishing it were a Sunday. at least today I dont have any appointments or classes to teach, like the day last week when I spilled gas all over my pants and had to teach 2 classes, meet with a math faculty member and volunteer at my kid’s school before being able to sneek home to change.

well, they do say life is an adventure, not a guided tour… *lol*

Catchin’ Up

been busy… work was crazy with stuff after xmas break, and then i’ve had a pretty nasty cold distrubuted by some beloved member of the household. but, today is a rare luxury – Lila is with the Luceros and Daniel is working. yup, i have a day of quiet all to myself. : ) and Daniel was soooo quiet this morning, i slept till 10. wow!

so i’m tired of Pogo for the time being and relatively caught up on my crochet and email, so i think i’ll catch up on post i’ve been meaning to do.

of course i crocheted gifts for the family. : ) I made Gramma a nice lap ‘ghan/shawl out of Bernat’s Galaxy, in Saturn. It was hateful yarn to crochet with as it got all tangled up in its gobs of fiber that makes it nubby boulce. but, the shawl turned out pretty nice and very warm.

I made a plain hat n scarf set for my Dad out of TCL Amore in Navy, and a doily for Mom. I was just kinda messing around with pineapples, and the doily started to bowl, so I ran with it. it would be perfect for holding potpouri or under a bowl or vase, and i think it turned out pretty cool.

we also took a marvelous trip to Salt Lake to visit with the fam; everyone was there as Gramma, Dad, and StepMom drove up from Albuquerque. it’s cold there and Lila needed a hat and scarf. I whipped one up in record time on xmas day out of Moda Dea Wild in Hot Tamale and Aunt Lydia’s size 10 cotton in Red. It’s a very interesting combination and made for a sturdy, warm, and heavy combination. We’ve already lost the hat (dammit!), but i’m hoping it will turn up at Mom’s somewhere. Turned out really cute, though, and Lila was so excited to open it.

we all had a great time hanging out with the fam and Lila really came out of her shell. : )

Before:

After:

Bah, Humbug!

You know, I don’t celebrate Christmas. I’ve not cared much for it since I was about 8 and learned that trees die when you cut them down. And let’s not even go there about this split from something spritual and family oriented to a commercial free-for-all at Target and Best Buy. But anyways. Back to our story.

So I volunteer an hour each week in my daughter’s school library when her class is there. The librarian and I take turns reading books to the children, sometimes I tell stories, and we help the children find books to check out for the week. I arrive early yesterday, and the librarian eagerly tells me about this exquisite pop up book she wants to read, how she knows the author and that the book is beautiful, and then she drops the bombshell – it’s the 12 days of xmas, and she expects me to sing it. Uhhh…. right.

We begin by introducing the book to the children, and turn to the first page where I begin, “on the first day of xmas, my true love gave to me, a partridge in a pear tree.” k, got that part. Then, “on the second day of xmas, my true love gave to me…. pause… (insert image of me leaning over the librarian frantically trying to read the text of the book because I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THE WORDS ARE TO THIS FRIGGIN’ SONG).” yeah, it went like that.

By the fourth day of xmas, the librarian figured out I did not know this particular xmas carol and would intentionally SHOW me the page so I knew what to sing. Sigh. By the fifth day, she’s begun to sing, too, and has encouarged the children to join us, even selecting one vocal young’un to solo ‘the partridge in a pear tree’ part (of course… it’s the one part i knew). All the children are merrily singing along, me stumbling along, trying to figure out what gift is next while simultaneously remembering the sequence as we count back down, and I look down on to the face of my lovely Lila. She is sitting there, slack jawed and more than a little confused with all this merrymaking and group sing-songing; clearly she doesnt know the words to this particular xmas carol, either. I simultaneously feel bad that I’ve maybe let her down a little bit yet happy that I’m not the only one who doesn’t know what the hell’s going on.

I read them a book about Hannukkah when we finished the carol travesty. For Jen. : )

GIS Your Thanksgiving

Wow, this is cool! Click the link below to see a GIS created map of where Thanksgiving Dinner comes from. Who knew Wisconsin did so much agriculture??? And we all know about Idaho Potatoes, but I had no idea North Carolina had the corner on the sweet potato market!!! Excellent fun!

http://www.indiana.edu/~libgeol/turkeyday/trkyday02.pdf

New Coat!

We’re going to Salt Lake City to visit the family this year – everyone from Mom, Dad, StepMom, StepDad, Gramma, Siblings, Cousins, congregates in one place the week after Xmas to hang out. This year, Mom’s hosting, and I’m excited to go! I haven’t seen the fam in ages. Plus, this will be Daniel’s first trip to Salt Lake, which is actually a pretty cool little city. Added bonus – they have Cracker Barrel; a luxury not found in California!!! In planning for the trip, I realized that ‘winter’ in California has not left us with much warm clothing for a place that has real winter. So, I dug around in my long neglected sewing stash, found some fleece, a pattern, thread, and decided I needed a warm coat.

It was a super easy pattern and I made the entire thing on Sunday. It’s huge, far bulkier than I expected, but hey, it’s damn warm!!! I also used the decorative stitching thingie on my machine to topstitch something fancy to match the buttons, too. That took forever and made my feet hurt (I prefer to sew standing up at a counter).

I hate nylon lining (cold on bare arms) so I dug around in my old diaper makin’ stash and found some nice cream colored microfleece, which I used to line the coat with. I’m certain the microfleece is what makes the coat so bulky, but wow, it’s super warm and extremely soft!

Overall, I’m pretty pleased with my new coat. It’s incredibly warm and soft, very roomy with huge pockets, and looks decent. Now to crochet up some hats n scarves…

Angry Octopus

Oh, and have I mentioned that I am the Mother of the most wonderful, creative little child ever? She came home with this the other day, proudly proclaiming, “Mommy, this is Angry Octopus!”

Now why would he be angry? Could it be because he only has seven arms? Maybe that one of his arms is sort of stuck onto him as an afterthought? Or perhaps because he’s recently filled up his pickup truck at the gas pump or paid five bucks for a thing of creamer at Vons? He looks a little on the psycho side, but I dont think Lila’s learned that vocabulary word just yet. Just look at his eyes… and that maniacal grin… I totally empathize with that look. yeah, he’s nuts.

But I love him so. How could you not? Angry Octopus rocks!!!

Presents for Grammy, Grandpa, and Tanta

I have the sweetest little child ever. Lila got a box of clothes and goodies from Grammy (my Mom), Grandpa Jerry (my stepdad), and Tanta (my sis), and was so delighted that she decided to make some mail for them. She drew pictures and made art, then took colored construction paper and ‘wrapped’ them, complete with white printer paper strips for ribbon. She even made tags, bless her gentle heart, although she wrote ‘to’ Lila instead of ‘from’ Lila. Nonetheless, I think that’s pretty darn good for an unsupervised five year old!!!

presents

Bye Bye, My Beloved Tee Tee

My heart is breaking… my beloved Tee Tee, my kitty of 10 years, died yesterday. She became ill about a month ago, and with little money to spend on labs and whatnot, we only had the option to make her comfortable until the time came for her to go. Yesterday, I planned to take her to the vet, but the sneeky little girl got out and hid under the stairs. I couldn’t, no matter what the bribe, get her to emerge, so I had to wait until Daniel came home. He had to completely tear the stairs apart in order for me to get her out. When I did, I saw that she was unable to stand, her legs twitching and reaching out. She cried and cried, and choked on the water I tried to give her through a syringe. It was time; my Tee Tee was suffering. I took her in, and held her in my arms, stroking her, telling her she was a good kitty and that we loved her, until the vet gave her the medicine to take her into the next world. I will miss my Tee Tee.

I first got my Tee Tee in 1996 as a companion kitty for my Baby Ivan kitty. I got her from a shelter; she was one of several feral animals taken from a rural part of New Mexico. The shelter said that even though she was four months old, it was unlikely that she would adjust to domesticated life, and that if she remained wild I could bring her back. However, I was drawn to her, as she was an exact replica of a kitty my Grandparents had when I was a young girl. I named her Tycee, after that kitty my Grandparents had. She was a wild thing, and it took about a year for her to emerge from under the furniture, but when she did, she was the best kitty anyone could have. She was ferocious as a hunter! She killed prairie dogs that got into our back yard. In an apartment building infested with mice, we never had one. Only mice parts did we find. She kept any animal that didn’t live with us out of the yard; it was *her* territory! She ran the household and kept every other animal we had in line. She was a good kitty.

When I had my daughter, Lila, Tycee became like a second Mommy, meowing and pawing at me when Lila cried. She watched over Lila, and was so good to her. In all the ear and hair pulling, tail yanking and rough hugging and child play, Tycee never once scratched Lila. She was patient and gentle and kind. Pointing to Tycee, “Tee Tee” was Lila’s first word, and so Tee Tee she became.

I love my Tee Tee. She was my companion for 10 years, the cat no one thought would easily adjust to domesticated life. But she did; she was a survivor, strong and tough and always there to watch over the house, my daughter and myself. I love you still, my Tee Tee. I miss you so.

Those New Hummer Commercials…

seen ’em? ugh. i’ve never really formed an opinion about the whole Hummer thing… to each their own, i say. but the new commercials are just over the top and have completely altered my view on anyone who drives a Hummer.

Commercial #1 –

Mommy and Jake are on the playground. Mommy and Jake are waiting in line at the slide, and another Mommy and son take cuts. Mommy says, “Jake was next.” to which Other Mommy replies, “Well now we’re next.” Mommy keeps her mouth shut and stands by meekly while Other Mommy and child enjoys the slide. Mommy then grabs Jake, rushes to the nearest Hummer dealership, buys the silly thing slamming the pen down on the desk and drives off to the slogan, “Get your girl on.”

k, let’s review. if you’re a pushover and you fail to stand up for yourself and your kid, you make yourself feel better with frivolous purchases and you drive a Hummer. ooooh, makes me want to go right out and buy one.

Commercial #2 –

Man #1 is at the grocery store purchasing healthy foods such as tofu and veggies. he sees Man #2 line up behind him, dumping the contents of a small butcher shop onto the conveyor belt. interesting to note that the meat was all unpackaged. Man #1 eyes the meat longingly while Man #2 eyes the tofu and veggies with equal suspicion. Man #1, obviously married to Mommy above, leaves the store and rushes to purchase a Hummer and drives off to the slogan, “Restore your manhood.” wait, i’m confused. i thought that was what Viagra was for???

k, let’s review. if you make healthy eating choices and have very low self esteem about such healthy eating choices you are less of a man and require something to ‘restore your manhood.’ we can now deduce that any man who drives a Hummer eats healthy but feels badly for it, plus he lacks the critical thinking skills that would allow him to formulate a balanced meal of veggies and a burger. right.

so, overall, Hummer is loudly proclaiming that people who fail to stand up for themselves and have low self esteem should drive their vehicles. great. just what we need – overzealous, passive agressive personalities running loose on our roads feeling better about themselves by bullying everyone else in an obese, dangerous, commodity guzzling vehicle. boy, if i owned a Hummer and saw those commercials I’d be pissed.

What i’ve learned –

see an aggressive Hummer driver? offer them cuts or red meat and you’ll be a okay.

Learing To Be A Leftie, or, Establishing Communication With the ‘Other’ Hand

~sigh~ i have owie boo boo on my right hand. apparently, what i thought was carpal tunnel is actually damaged tendons in my thumb. saw the doc yesterday, and i’m under orders to keep the thumb immobile while it heals. that’s all fine n good… except my left arm seems to be a little, well… let’s be gentle… sluggish in responding to my suggested activities. and it tires easily. i guess it enjoyed the good life as a support arm, letting the right one do all the work, but no more. now it must scrub the bathroom counter, which is actually quite tiring. i wonder if my left triceps will lose their second wave from all this? seems possible.

the worst part about this is that i cannot crochet. at all. and that is the traumatic part. tv is sooo boring; i had no idea! and movies just take too long, sitting there paying attention and doing nothing. but the good part is that i’ve been reading more; both last night and today i’ve picked up books because A – i can’t crochet so tv and movies have lost their appeal, and B – i can’t play video games. right now i’m settling in with Innumeracy by John Allen Paulos. it’s turning out to be a fun little read.

Things I Cannot Do With My Left Hand

  1. thread the spray nozzle on the garden hose.
  2. bathe my kid. apparently my left hand has great difficulty keeping shampoo on Lila Approved Surfaces (and let us not talk about Rinsing With The Cup). much squalling results in bathing attempts these days.
  3. use a knife. my apologies again to the table next to us at Brandon’s Diner. i honestly did not mean to fling burrito at you.
  4. use the left/right handed learning scissors i got for Lila.
  5. pour.
  6. brush my teeth. worst. thing. ever. .