Sunday, August 31, 2008

My family rocks. They have really been great with all the car crap my mom and sister have been dealing with. First my grandma just offered my sister a nice chunk of money to help with her car rental expenses and general living expenses while she's student teaching. Her generosity about made me cry. Then, my uncle, a pilot for Delta, offered to do the driving and car swapping for my sister and mom since he can take advantage of free flights. They are too nice! I can't believe how generous they are being with their time, support, advice and even money, without being asked. I love my family.

Ok, my plan to nap didn't work very well. Naps make me tense and I can't seem to relax and just sleep. I think about what I need to do after my nap and the sleep isn't always the most restful. I tend, it seems, to sleep at more normal times on the weekend, since I can go to work whenever I want on Sunday as long as no one else needs the same space. Since everyone else is taking today off I can work whenever I want. I offered to work since the extra money is nice and because I want to get used to this schedule. It will also be my first week without extra help and I thought an extra day would be nice. I wish I was in the mood for coffee. I may still stop at a coffee shop before I go in.

Now to find some food.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Turning down money, especially more than you thought you would get, is hard. I think it was the right decision though. Here's the deal, the damage to my car is just a couple hundred dollars or so away from being totaled. The insurance company offered to total it so we could either salvage it or just take the money and run. The really surprising part is how much they think my car is worth. It's about twice what I thought. After the initial estimate I thought they were going to total it and not give us the choice. We have decided to have them fix the car instead of taking the money and buying a new car because we can't deal with a car payment right now. We weren't planning for a car payment until after we were settled in a house and more settled in general and though this would have been a great jump start on a car, the timing is just wrong. Even 6 months or so from now, when I am making a bit more money, we most likely have a house and know what kind of monthly payments we will be making, we may have taken the money.

I hate making decisions sometimes. At least we are getting a new TV and now they are going to upgrade our rental because my car won't be fixed until next Wednesday and apparently the car they gave us has been sold. I miss my car and it's wacky fan the only works on high, manual transmission, and small trunk. The trunk on our rental is huge, while the car itself is not that much bigger. It's just odd.

On the knitting/crocheting front, I had to order more yarn for the baby blanket I am working on because I was just using stash yarn. I of course failed to hold onto the ball bands for either colorway and they didn't make it into my stash on Ravelry.I luckily ordered the correct colors and just in case I got it wrong I got a skein of yarn to make the chunky version of Foliage as I have had the strangest urge to knit a hat lately. Also, some more colorwork is increasingly tempting as is the February Lady Sweater.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

I felt like a drove through a monsoon to get to work last night. I haven't driven in rain like that in quite awhile, despite the flood stricken area I recently vacated, because I didn't do a lot of driving there. It probably wouldn't have been so bad if I wasn't driving a rental car I wasn't familiar with. I do love a good thunderstorm, which this was.

I really should go to bed, but I drank coffee, was out running errands, and just found out Sears is replacing our 2 year old TV (yay protection plan!), so I am not feeling terribly sleepy. Maybe a grilled cheese sammich with havarti will help.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


Originally uploaded by chelseachip.
I can't decide what to knit/crochet anymore. My sock is having issues and at the guage and size I am knitting, it's not striping how I hoped it would. I think I may need to move on for awhile. The egg/chicken on the left is having issues. I think I misread the pattern because it is huge! Hmmm.. not sure what's going on there. Elijah, in the middle, just needs me to embroider some eyes so he can join the soon-to-be-finished-baby blanket, once more yarn arrives, so the new baby of some family friends can get some use out of them. The kid is only 3 days old or so; I am not too far behind! I should really finish Ornette, but I want something a bit more mindless until I get settled into my new eating-sleeping-awaking routine. At least I found my bucket of yarn so I can go paw through it for awhile. I should probably wait until Josh is awake though.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

My sister picked her car up from the dealership where they replaced the computer and fuel pump today. She drove about 150 miles, stopped at Dairy Queen and the car died just like before. This is ridiculous! I think she should trade the thing in for something else. At least it died at a place where she can get ice cream and sit in the A/C, since it's around 90F where she is.

It's so hard figuring out what to do with all our stuff in the new place. We are unpacking only what we really need and probably a few things we don't so it makes our next move easier. We are without a couch because it is one less thing to move later and our seating in the living room is a bit awkward right now. I am currently using one of those cheap butterfly chairs from the college section at Target, which I acquired while I was living in the dorms. It takes skill to get out of it. We have red folding chairs for our dining table and most of my baking supplies site on top of the kitchen cabinets. Our two table lamps don't have lamp shades because we didn't realize how expensive they are when we decided to trash the set from the eighties when we moved. It doesn't help that our laundry is in three different piles in three different rooms. I should really get on that. At least it is nice and cool today, almost too the point of chilly. Love it! I despise summer unless it is cooler than 85F and low humidity than I can accept it.

I have started another knitting project and might actually work on it or some socks today since I will be hanging around here doing laundry until I run out or quarters. I also have a baby blanket I am working on for a family friend's soon to be born baby, but I seem to have misplaced it. Grr...

I must say, I am quite jealous of my sister's new place b/c she has a washer and dryer in her apartment. I guess considering all the trouble she has had with her stupid car, she deserves a washer a dryer more than I do. That thing will end up costing her almost $1000 dollars including the rental cars, extra travel expenses, and the repair costs. I feel so bad for her. She's at the point where she doesn't even want to look at that car, and I can't blame her. A relatively new car with such low mileage shouldn't have that many problems, but according to the mechanics at the dealership, they have had several of them in for the same parts. At least one of the things that was replaced, the computer, was still under warranty. Send good car vibes her way!

My car is still crushed, but at least it is running. I hope the alternator is fine because we jumped it again last night and drove it around a bit to hopefully charge the battery and it started earlier this morning. We are going to pull that battery out later and take it to Auto Zone because they will charge it for free and then check the alternator for free as well. Nice! It will be heading to the body shop on Monday and we get a rental car courtesy of Mr. Escalade's insurance company. If my little car was going to get hit by anyone, I am glad it was this guy. He has the connections and good insurance. I thought the adjustor for the insurance company would total my car, which I didn't want to deal with right now. I want this car for at least another two years, if it can make it. I want to buy a house before I deal with buying a car.

I guess I should get started on that laundry.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

I am quite enjoying my new job. The pay sucks (I should get a raise soon) and the work is labor intensive and requires me to be on my feet for 7-10 hours a night, but it is fun. I think it helps that my new boss is great and the extern from LCB, named Chelsey, is great to work with. She is essentially working under me, but we seem to have the same idea about what should be done when and it goes really smoothly. I am supposed to be in charge, but there is no need.

I got some really nice feedback from the new boss today. She said everything is turning out really well, i.e. no raw, burnt or falling apart cakes. She also said I may get another intern when this one leaves after next week. Another extern would be great since I don't think I can get all that is supposed to be done, especially for Tuesday and Wednesday. Today we were done about a half hour early and probably could have finished earlier than that if we hadn't had a few math and counting errors and tried to work a bit faster. The time there flies no matter how much we have going on.

The hours take some getting used to. I have been sleeping when Josh is at work so we still get to spend a good amount of time together, but sleeping during the day is just odd. I almost feel like this week has been one long day. It's weird and really hard to keep track of which day it is.

My car runs but Josh is still referring to it as a pop can since it kinda looks like someone stepped on my car. That will most likely be fixed early next week after the insurance adjuster takes a look at it. The battery was drained due to a light in the trunk that didn't turn off because my car's poor little trunk is rather dented. Josh was thinking and figured it out as we pulled into the local Auto Zone to check the alternator. We jumped my car, pulled out the light bulb in the trunk and so far so good.

I haven't really been knitting, cooking or baking, other than at work, so I have nothing much to share. Oh! I did make a some of this batter for quick breakfast muffins, which I encourage you all to try. I added some flax and have in the past used honey as a sweetener and added some more cereal to make up for the extra moisture. I am sure that will change once I get used to this new routine.

Monday, August 18, 2008

I survived my first overnight at the bakery. I was there for about 10 hours, but it didn't feel like it until I sat down. That is when I realized how tired I was. Cake batter and buttercream are heavy as are the bowls they are mixed in and I am not used to being on my feet for that long. Tonight I get en extern from the school I will be attending, and she will be working under me. Wacky, I know. Her name is Chelsey, so there is probably going to be some confusion. Usually I will be working alone, but the intern will be around for 2 weeks, I believe. I enjoyed the work quite a bit and I really like my boss. I was awake for over 24 hours yesterday, went to bed about 11:30 this morning, woke up a few times, but finally got out of bed at 8:00. I feel much better after some sleep. All I know, is my arms are going to ripped, I hope, from all the heavy lifting. I leave for my next shift in about an hour.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Cars' troubles

If you ever wondered what happens when and Escalade runs into the back of a Prizm, here ya go...

If my insurance was paying for this rather than the guy that hit the car I would probably have money rather than a car right now. The damage is definitely more than my car is worth. Since it wasn't Josh's fault, he was driving at the time while I was at home doing sit-ups, my car gets a new trunk, bumper and some other stuff courtesy of Mr. Escalade Owner's insurance. I supposed 121,000+ miles without incurring major damage isn't bad.

My sister's car isn't doing so well either. She is currently working her way south to the Houston area where she is completing her student teaching. Not only is she making this trip without cruise control, since her car doesn't have it, but the car keeps dying as she is driving or it won't start after she has stopped. She took it to a mechanic, but they couldn't get the car to die so they couldn't figure out what was wrong with it and sent her on her way. She got about 100 miles further and the same thing happened. Another trip to a different mechanic who may have figured out what is wrong, but doesn't have the part so she is going to have to keep driving the thing hoping it won't die while she is in a bad spot. She is not happy with that car. Her car only has 30,000 miles on it and has already had more problems than mine. I feel so bad for her right now. She really doesn't need extra expenses right now since she barely has enough to cover her living expenses while she works (i.e. student teaches) for free.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

I got the bakery job! I was totally lucky to find this job because I just sent her an email inquiring about any openings and they had some. I start Sunday or Monday, she's not sure yet. Now I have to get used to working at night and sleeping during the day. At least Josh and I will be home and awake at the same time for the most part. The owner seems really excited to have me starting because of my science background and my familiarity with using scales. The precision and accuracy required in baking is quite similar to what is required for scientific research which is part of the reason I love it.

BTW, Meegiemoo, I stumbled across Cake Wrecks yesterday and pretty much went through all the posts on there.

If I get the two jobs I am interviewing for, I should be doing pretty well financially. One is for a baker at a wedding cake bakery. The pay isn't great at first, but within a year can be pretty decent depending on your performance. I am really more interested in the experience than the pay at this point. Ideally, you can progress from cake baker to cake filler to cake decorator if all goes well. The other interview is for an exercise instructor for patients with peripheral artery disease, and would consist of taking the patients on walks and keeping logs of the patients attendance and progress.

I haven't been doing a lot of knitting, but now that the Olympics are on that may change. I am almost done with an RPM but may frog and drop down a couple needles sizes because it is quite loose on me. It knits up fast so I can't complain too much. It's better to have a sock that fits!

If the weather is nice and we get some organizing accomplished around the apartment, Josh and I are going to go kayaking! He is all about getting a water craft of some sort now that we are in Minnesota and kayaks are being considered so we thought we should try them out. We did a bit of canoeing this weekend at the cabin and it was nice. Getting the canoe back onto it's hooks in the garage wasn't fun, though. He is also interested in getting a personal watercraft because it could be pulled behind his truck, though I have seen some relatively small vehicles pulling some large boats.

Well, I need to get ready for my second interview at the bakery. I really like the owner so far, so I hope this one works out!

Monday, August 04, 2008

I finished a pair of socks! (Rav page)

Pattern: Bellatrix(Ravelry)
Yarn: STR Lightweight in Carbon
Needles: 2.0mm nickel KP dpns
Mods: I don't think I followed the heel instruction, and I don't think I did the same number of pattern repeats as the pattern.

Started some new ones.

These are RPMs in Lotus Yarns exclusive Punk Rock Sock Club edition colorway Loose Nuts.

And now a great dessert recipe for those days you don't want to turn on the oven or give yourself food poisoning.

Unbakeable Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 c unsalted butter
3/4 c sugar
3/4 c brown sugar

1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda (this does affect the taste and I prefer having it in though they won' be baked)
1 tsp vanilla
1-2 tbl milk ( I am not sure I just splashed some in there until it was about a normal consistency for cookie dough at this point)
2 1/4 c flour (I like half whole wheat and half white flour)
1/4 c ground flax (optional, but I like the flavor and it's healthy!)

Cream the butter and sugars together by hand or in a mixer then add the salt, baking soda, vanilla and milk and mix well. Add the flour and combine fully.

Now for the add ins: I used Guittard semi-sweet chocolate chips which I was surprised to find at our local Cubs. Use whatever you want!

Form into a log, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and freeze it for about and hour. Slice and enjoy!

Saturday, August 02, 2008

I have been so tired the past few days. I think the whole moving thing finally caught up with me. I took a nap! I am bad a napping. It's just not in my skill set. After tackling the laundry on Tuesday and some of the kitchen on Wednesday, I haven't really done anything other than run to Target and the grocery store for odds and ends and sit in front of the TV. Josh and I did go on a walk to an area we are interested in purchasing a house, but other than that I have barely spent time outside, which is just a shame since the weather has been great the last two days.

Next week I am going to our cabin for a few days and it looks like Josh will be able to come for the weekend. It's about hours north of here and has a bit cooler weather and of course a lake for those hot days. Now I need to find the library so I can get a few books and pick a new knitting project.

Well, I better get back to applying for jobs.