Tuesday, September 23, 2008

odds & ends

Man, do I love the inventor of bullets. Well, not, you know, bang-bang bullets; I'm referring to the pseudo-organizational tool I employ way more than I ought to. And here I go again!

  • Fall has arrived! Hurrah! This just makes me so happy. The cooler weather is mostly here, and the leaves are starting to turn. It's lovely. Expect to see leaf pictures around here soon; I know I will not be able to help myself.
  • The cooler weather has brought with it the return of my morning walk with Baby Sister. We frequent the local bike path, which this year has been christened "Treewater." I was reluctant to use the word bike with Baby Sister, as her biking skills are not really ready for anyplace but the driveway, so I described it to her as, "you know, the place with the trees, and the water," as enticingly as I could. Hence Treewater. I like it, I think I should mention it to whomever runs the park. It's much more poetic and succint than the "Ten Mile River Greenway." Don't you agree?
  • Said morning walk has been touch and go. Baby Sister is not always enthusiastic about riding in her stroller. If she would prefer to walk, I'd be pretty much okay with that, but she'd prefer to push the stroller. Or climb and stand in the stroller. These things tend to slow us down, and for a couple of weeks the morning walks were routinely ending in tears. (Hers, I swear.) It's been better for the past few days, and I hope that continues. I'm becoming increasingly aware that this hour of relative quiet and physical activity is a big contributor to my sanity.
  • This is largely because work has been pretty crazy. See, my boss and his wife own five Sylvan centers, and the director of one of those centers is no longer working for them. Which means that two or three days a week, my boss is working at the other center and I'm all by myself here for about half the workday, until students start coming in. Most of the time there's some work to be done, but I've got a lot of downtime. It's also just weird to be completely alone for such big chunks of time. Now if I were at home and completely alone for a big chunk of time, I would love it, but it's just not the same here. I've done a lot of blog reading, not so much posting (except for, you know, now), and very very little knitting. I'm paranoid that somebody will walk in looking for help for their child and I'll be sitting there with my sock yarn. I'm thinking that would be somewhat unprofessional. At least the computer makes it look like I'm doing something work-related.
  • I've also been doing some online GRE prep, and I'm thinking I'm going to register to take the test soon. What I will do after that is less certain. I like my job a lot, but I don't see my kids nearly enough. Also there are no benefits whatsoever. I don't need healthcare, J's job is actually really good for that, but some sort of retirement something would probably be good. I know very very little about this kind of thing, but the news lately has just freaked me right out. It's very frustrating to regularly hear and read about this stuff that I understand just enough to get that it is Very Bad. Add the lack of any retirement benefits in my job and it gets all the more anxiety-producing.
  • I have to add, I hate the fact that I'm considering a career change for monetary reasons. Everybody knows you don't go into teaching for the money; it was never supposed to be about money. I love teaching. I especially love the way I teach now - all sorts of subjects to all sorts of kids, one-on-one where you make such a great connection. It's so gratifying to hear from kids and parents how much we've helped them, and in this job I hear it all the time. It's awesome, with the one exception of that gnawing ache of missing my family. This reality-rearing-its-ugly-head thing sucks.
  • And because all that would be a crappy way to end, I'll talk about knitting! I've cranked out a couple of small projects in the past two weeks, but I plan to post the pattern for those, so they'll have to wait. They're cute, though. :) I also cast on a bigger project, a cobblestone for Big Brother. I've got this crazy idea that I'd like all the kids to get sweaters for Christmas. You can look forward to the slow but steady unraveling of that idea (no pun intended) over the next few months; it should be fun. I sized the pattern down to fit his measurements, which wasn't too tough, and I've got just a little of it done at this point. He also requested a "zip-up," which is a little scary, but I've got quite a while before I have to face the zipper part. Amy has steered me toward a tutorial, so hopefully it will all be okay. The other thing that might make this sweater tough is the color - Big Brother picked out solid black. So far it hasn't been as difficult to see as I thought it would, and the yarn - di.Ve Zenith, which is a wonderfully squishy superwash merino - is nice to work with. A bit splitty, but I'm using some very pointy Knitpicks circulars so I haven't had much trouble.

Well, I think that's about it for now. I plan on posting that pattern later this week. No, really. See you then.