Sunday, 31 July 2016

I passed!

My big news this week is that my line manager called me in on Friday to tell me that I have passed the training course in my new job and am now being given my authority. I'm quite pleased and yet at the same time it's quite scary as now my work won't be checked so any mistakes I make are going to be my own responsibility. I'm in the first one-third of the recruits to be signed off and only the second part-time person to pass (the other was a former barrister!) so I feel I've done well. So it was Prosecco all round at home on Friday night.

We're also very proud of DS who achieved a 2:1 on his big exams at the end of his third year studying Chemistry at Oxford.  He's a very clever boy although you wouldn't know it from this afternoon's exchange.  I was fast asleep enjoying an afternoon nap after a tiring morning excursion to the Fibre East yarn festival in Ampthill when his bellow snapped me awake: "MU-UM, IS MY RAILCARD STILL VALID?" This would be the railcard that's in his own room that he was apparently too lazy to go and find.  Much hilarity ensued and by hilarity I mean yelling...  Then he had to walk to the station and renew his own railcard and no I didn't pay for it, that's why he has a job.

I did enjoy my annual visit to Fibre East which is always good. I think it is probably bigger than Unravel and there is a really nice mix of indie dyers and makers, books, various textile crafts and fibers, guilds etc. There were some lovely ceramic yarn bowls on several stalls this year, although I am lucky to already have one. I fondled lots of lovely yarn but was able to resist by thinking of all the lovely yarn I already had waiting in my stash. Until I came to the Coastal Colours stall, dyers in Lancashire, who had some absolutely gorgeous colourways. This 400m skein of 85% Bluefaced Leicester with a 15% Donegal Nep came home with me at a very reasonable price.

I flirted with some gradient skeins from Knitting Goddess but in the end, it was only the single skein above that came home with me.  I had a nice chat with the people on the machine knitters' Guild stall, and with the medieval re-enactment textile group, and saw a lovely sample cardigan on one stall called Siri which is available as a Ravelry download which I might have a go at.

Yesterday was my monthly sewing day, although I only stayed 4 hours because I had an outing with my dollshouse club in the afternoon.  In four hours I managed to cut, press and trim 184 half-square triangles in mixed indigo prints that I had previously sewn using Thangles papers.  This was an incredibly tedious job which I would never have stuck at if I were home. They will be a sawtooth border around my Indigo Bears Paw quilt.

This week, inspired by the weather and the Great British Sewing Bee, I actually went out and bought a sewing pattern. I dabbled rather unsuccessfully at clothes making many years ago, but I thought I should be able to manage a simple sleeveless top. I now remember why I don't like sewing clothes, as I am bogged down in trying to get the pattern to fit my measurements which wander across five or six sizes on the size chart.  Luckily I have the mannequin I made last year so I've been able to adjust the bust darts and all the seams, and add some back darts. The challenge will be to transfer the new positions back to the paper pattern and also to adjust the facings to match. I've bought a nice denim blue printed cotton to use for the actual top, but this toile is cut from old sheeting.

TV watching craft time this week has been split across several projects.  I'm knitting the skirt on the Sirdar Baby Crofter baby dress, which is knit top down from a ruffled yoke. This yarn is really nice to knit with.

I'm about two thirds of the way along the Multi-way wrap and also added a few more inches to the Que Sera cardigan sleeve.  And I've done some hand applique on the next block in my 25-block applique quilt.

In dollshousing time, I've become sidetracked onto one of the kits I discovered when I was going through my cupboards.  This is a Robin Betterley secret book kit, which is sort of 'no scale' but I suppose closest to a large 144th size.  The kit comes with the artwork and the laser cut pieces for the book itself and the tiny furniture.  I've completed the book which has a spine which slides out to reveal two rooms.  I'm currently working on the furniture for the upper room. I think this must have been an impulse buy at a dollshouse show.  I'm torn between thinking 'how cute!' and 'what am I going to do with it?'.

Computer obsolescence

My 'new' computer is now several years old and has been getting increasingly creaky and slow. I had a scare a few months ago when it wouldn't boot up, and another when it repeatedly blew the fuse on my power bar a few weeks later. Thursday morning the graphics card decided to go on strike. I took the case apart and hoovered out the graphics card fan which was rather gummed up with dust bunnies.  After that it would grudgingly run for between 10-20 minutes before fritzing out and the screen going black. I used my ipad to look into a replacement graphics card but it's difficult because of the PC being so old and it looked like a new card was going to cost in excess of £100. After three hours I decided 's*d it' and started researching (in 20 minute gaps) for a new computer.  I've now ordered a general purpose machine which is supposed to be good enough for both a home office and a non-serious gamer so hopefully that will turn up in a few weeks and won't be too hard to set up.  I will need to look into how to get everything off my old PC and onto the new one, without cluttering up the new one too much. I also need either a partition or a virtual machine as my financial software will only run on Windows XP (currently I have a partitioned drive). In the meantime the weather has turned cooler and the graphics card is mostly cooperating with only the occasional blackout.   If the new machine is too good for gaming then I may be having to beat DS off with a stick when I want to use the PC.

1 comment:

Mairead Hardy said...

Congratulations to both you and your son!

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