23 January 2009

Let's Try This Again

Long time, no blog. Is anyone still here? [Was anyone ever reading this? Oh, well.]

I don't make New Year's Resolutions, but if I did, keeping this blog would be one. So with that, let me do a recap on what's been going on lately, neatly compartmentalized.

1. House Remodel For the past year, we've been working on (and off) with an architect, the goal being to make our too small 1950s "colonial" house work for us. After the first bids, for the shell and mechanicals only, were coming in at 30% over our entire budget, we re-thought the plan. So now we'll be doing our own contracting, with the architect assisting us by finding workers.

2. Odyssey of the Mind I'm coach of my son's team. I've coached OotM / DI teams before, so while this is a time sink, it's not much mental stress.

3. SF Fan This is the local con season. Arisia was last weekend; after a snafu I got Programming to reduce my workload to only 10 panels. Half were with kids — would have been more, if the head of the kid's program had asked me to work more instead of just changing my schedule without telling me.
Boskone is next month, as usual my husband-creature and I are running the Registration Desk. This is our third year of doing this, we have it down to a science and have enough trustworthy volunteers that we can enjoy the con too.

4. Knitting The shawl I was starting at my last blog post is still unfinished, but the end is near. I also just finished a Moebius scarf for my math-loving son, and am beginning a matching hat. I have a few little things on needles too. Taught knitting to kids and adults at Arisia (and taught my helpers how to teach).

5. Gifted Education First, a public call-out to my son's teacher this year. He's wonderful. Last year's teachers worked to put the brightest kids together in one classroom, and my boy now has both a teacher who gives hm challenging work and fellow students to learn with. It's a wonderful year. My daughter is having a tougher time, but mostly socially, as her good friends are in different schools this year.

6. Woodworking My new obsession. I've wanted to make furniture for decades, but never had the time, space, or money to set up a shop. I was also scared of tablesaws ... but the house remodel will demand my skills to do finish trim and built-in furniture. This past fall, I took a basic woodworking class at our local vo-tech school, and realized:
- I had more book learning than anyone but the teacher
- I'm enough of a perfectionist to do good work, even for a beginner
- There's a wealth of woodworking information on the Internet.
So I began "drinking from a fire hose", as I call my obsessive study of new material. And I learned even more:
- I prefer working with hand tools
- A tablesaur, as Alf the Cornish Woodworker calls it, is not essential.

So, I've been buying some hand tools, and learning to sharpen them. I'm also almost done with my first project, a hanging Shaker shelf with a drawer and coat hooks, in clear-finished maple. So far, it looks great.

Enough for now ... time to begin my morning chores with a brisk walk to my son's school to deliver him, then a contemplative walk home.

1 comment:

  1. I don't know about anyone else, but you're still in my Google reader.

    Glad to get the update.

    jo in okc