Word of the Year: Momentum

I’ve decided my word of the year for 2014 is Momentum. It’s most definitely not “because”–I’m just not even going to get started on that. Yes, I know it’s the beginning of February, not January. While many people are reflecting at year end and thinking ahead to the new year, I’m still recovering. Yes, it takes that long to get over the holiday season for me some years!

Momentum is awesome while you have it. I know because I had it for many years, and I wouldn’t have been able to push a book from concept to completion in just over a year without it. These days, there’s no momentum. I move in fits and starts, and not always in a forward direction. Continue reading

Sewing is Good for the Soul

I visited my sewing machine today. It’s been a bit lonely lately, I’m sure. There it sits on that lovely custom sewing table day after day, and it can’t even enjoy the view from the window because it’s turned toward the opposite wall. I’ve been doing some quilt related things recently as I hinted here, but they don’t really involve that “hands on” time with the sewing machine and fabric.

It all started with making the bed. Confession time: I’m not a bed-maker. I never have been. Why make the bed when you’re just going to get in it later and mess it up? ITMan doesn’t care one way or the other–he’s not a bed-maker either–so we get along fine. When we get out of bed, we just pull up the covers a bit, and go on about the day. Shadow loves that especially in winter since he can go burrow under the covers and sleep when he gets cold during the day, and Patches sometimes makes his bed there as well on top of the feather duvets. Continue reading

An Interesting Place

By way of a little “touching base/checking in” type post, I find myself in an interesting place at the moment, both literally and figuratively:

Augusta is an interesting place. So far, we really like it here, high pollen counts and high temperatures notwithstanding. We’re not actually in Augusta, but in a smaller town just outside of it. It’s a nice area, and most things I need or want to do are within a few minutes from the house, and I very quickly embraced the idea that anything over ten miles away is “too far” and even five miles is pushing it. The Augusta area is big enough to have a nice mall with a Dillard’s and a Macy’s (which is almost “too far” it must be said), but not big enough for a Nordstrom or Neiman Marcus, and I’m okay with that. If it was that big, it would be too big like Atlanta, and I don’t think I’d like living there. Augusta seems just right.

Our house is an interesting place. For that matter, so is home ownership. You see, I’ve never owned a house before, and it still feels a bit…strange…somehow. It’s all ours, and we can do what we like with it, and we don’t have to put up with strange landlords or worry about what issues or faults might become evident as time goes on that perhaps weren’t apparent when we moved in or that the landlords didn’t want to tell us about. The house itself is wonderful, and I’m still amazed that I found it. I think I fall in love with it a little more as each week passes. We love the neighborhood, all three streets of it, and our neighbors are nice and quiet and nearly invisible, just the way we like to be. Every once in a while though, I still stop and think about how weird it is to have our own house, and maybe have a few roots starting to set themselves into the ground finally. Continue reading

No Complaints Here…Well, Maybe Just One

As some of you may know, I’ve wanted to move back to the US for a number of years. Honestly, fear was probably what kept us here. Fear of the unknown, fear of the little hell that is moving your entire life from one continent to another (it wasn’t fun the first time, it isn’t fun this time, and let me tell you, I’m never doing this again), fear of buying a house (though more accurately, fear of not being able to afford to buy the kind of house that we wanted).

Despite all those fears, I still wanted to be back in the States, I just wasn’t looking forward to getting there and the whole moving process, and it was easier to stay here of course. We shouldn’t have stayed so long really, but some things seem to have worked out for the better, like the location that we’re going to and the housing market right now being a buyers market.

Even so, there are just so many things about living here that I’m tired of, and have been for years (some of which, in all fairness to Germany, has to do with the US Army and all it’s idiocy). It’s a nice place to visit, but I don’t want to live in Germany any longer. I won’t go into the laundry list of stuff that annoys me on a daily basis here; suffice it to say that I’ve groused enough over the years about all of this stuff that ITMan is now saying “Okay, we’re headed back to the States finally. It’s what you’ve wanted for years, so I don’t want to hear any complaints from you when we get there.” Hmfph. Continue reading

Getting in Touch

with:

  • My gamer side. Yeah, like you couldn’t tell from my absence what I’ve been doing for the last two months! The addiction to World of Warcraft rages on. My Night Elf Hunter promptly took a back seat to my Death Knight at level 55, and I’m working on the slow journey to level 80 with the Death Knight. And along the way, I’ve made a few more characters, so I have my own small case of alt-itis. I don’t have the veritable army of alts that my mother has, but still, if I make more than two more new characters, I’ll have to make them on a new server since I can’t have more than ten on the server that I play on now. Then they’ll be the poor relations, since there won’t be any of my other characters over there on the other server to share gold. Gold makes it all so much easier…big surprise…
  • My family more often, both the immediate members and the ones far away, as we play WoW together. I see my youngest daughter and husband more, since we all play in my studio together on separate computers. Sometimes we adventure together in-game, or help each other kill the difficult monsters. I talk to my mother, aunt and cousin more, though it must be noted that the conversations are mostly game related and take place in the in-game chat window! :-)
  • The taxes. Ugh. Big UGH. But it’s not like you can just not do them. :-| (Though at the moment, it’s tempting to make a try for the “not doing them” technique, and see how long I can stay under the radar on that.) And I have all that business stuff to make it 150% more complicated this year too. Yes, I’m whining. It’s my blog and I’ll cry if I want to!
  • My chauffeur side. I spend way too much time driving lately. GuitarGirl has graduated from high school, gotten a new job at the Commissary and started college classes, so my taxi duties have quadrupled (or maybe quintupled) in the last few weeks. Not that I don’t enjoy driving my car as I’m still in love with everything about it even though it’s over three years old. It’s just an awesomeness that I’ll never get over probably. In fact it’s the only thing that makes the taxi duties tolerable at all, but I still would rather pass on it and never leave my house unless I felt like it and there was good shopping on the other end of the journey, tyvm. On top of all that, it’s a bit freaky to have a child in college. I’m just sayin’.

But not in touch with: Continue reading

Head to Head: EQ Printables vs. Jacquard Cotton Sheets

I’ve been doing some printing on fabric off and on lately, using EQ Printables Premium Cotton Satin Inkjet Fabric Sheets. I picked up a 6 sheet package at Quilt Market in Houston in 2008 so that I could try it out. The results with the EQ Printables are okay, but I haven’t been ecstatically happy with them, so when I was ordering from SoftExpressions.com recently, I decided to order a package of Jacquard Cotton Ink Jet Printing Sheets to see if it was any better.

I actually wasn’t planning on doing any sort of really scientific side-by-side comparison when I ordered the Jacquard, but after I printed an image on the EQ Printables and was pretty unhappy with the way the ink ran and spread during the rinsing phase, I decided to print the same image on the Jacquard to test it out. And okay, it’s still not a terribly thorough analysis since it’s not like I’m going to burn through three or four more sheets to test different kinds of images on each of these brands, but I think the results are worth sharing anyway.

Here’s the head to head, brutal comparison: Continue reading