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The briefest of debriefs. (debrieves?)

1. I'm moving out. As in, Angelo's not. We're not "breaking up", just taking a much-needed giant step back.

2. Where am I moving? Well, I met with a couple guys in an intentional-community-type house yesterday -- 'twas very cool. We'll see.

3. I am a web developing MACHINE! A few of us AmeriCorps kids are preparing for a hostile takeover/redesign of nweec.org. I want to have three designs to propose tomorrow morning, and here are the first two: uno, dos. Sweet, huh?

4. Omg, Homeward Bound's on the tv here at the coffee shop.

5. Speaking of web development, I am starting to seriously consider trying to do it for a living starting in the fall when I go back to school. The catch: I'm somewhat lacking in the experience department. So... if anybody wants a PHP/MySQL/CSS-type website for super-cheap, we should chat.



I know, I've all but disappeared from the blagospehere. Whatever.

I've been working a lot (well, not more than 40 hours a week, but I see my coworkers every damn day), harassing my kitties and boyfriend, cooking a bit, and (mostly) playing WoW.

Oh yeah.Collapse )

Any other WoWers out there, or am I talking to a whole bunch of brick walls?



Remus sweater jumper: back on track.

I know I've said it before, but this time I've finally got the sleeves worked out. Last time I picked up my armscye stitches and tried a few different ways of using short rows (kind of like the first part of turning a sock heel, but in the round), and I kept ending up with a horrible combination of puckering and poofing. It seemed this sweater really wanted to be a vest.

But! With the help of an experienced designer and the pythagorean theorem, I've got a sleeve pattern written down that should work.

In other knitting news, I am *this close* to finishing my Goodwill raglan. I have a few inches of the second sleeve to go, and I've decided to make it a Weasley sweater, because apparently everything I knit has to be Harry Potter. And what's happened?

I fucking ran out of yarn.


New Favorites

I did my grocery shopping down at Pike Place Market yesterday. I can't believe I've been going to Safeway all this time. You can't blow buckets of money on Abbaye de Belloc just anywhere.

The kitties are being super cute, all cuddled up on the window sill. And here they are being all cute, snuggling in the laundry basket.Collapse )

Yes, I am trying to post more frequently.

Fun, fun, fun

Have I mentioned how much I love my job? It's fantastic. It's almost like being a Schoolie -- except that there's no weird teenage angsty drama, and I have yet to flash any of my coworkers.

On Thursday I had my first Earth Club (afterschool teaching goodness) where I was the only "teacher", and it went great. I brought a computer microscope that someone donated years ago, hooked it up to my laptop, and we all took turns looking at honeybee wings, dog hair, and algae, and learning how to change magnification and focus. (Have you ever seen a kid use a microscope for the first time? It's awesome.) I've got 7 kids from grades 1-5, so it's going to be challenging to come up with activities that will be fun for both extremes of the spectrum, but my only 5th grader seems keen on being my helper.

Yesterday a few of us went up to a conference on environmental education in La Conner, and afterwards drove up to Bellingham to enjoy The Boundary Bay Brewery. Chris and Shannon were so excited about it that they brought 5 gallons worth of jugs and growlers to fill up. Their beer is fantastic, but I didn't realize until the first sip of my IPA that it's the same beer I always get at the bar a damn block away from my house.

Man, it's actually sunny and beautiful out today. What the hell am I doing in here?


Alright Mark, here you go. It's jumbo size, to tide you over for a while.

The last project was the website. I can't even tell you how OVER that I am. I've never been so thrilled to complete something before. (Technically though, it's not *totally* completed -- but I'm working on it only a couple days, rather than 40-50 hours, a week these days.)

Now we're working on the apartment! I mean, we've been living here for FIVE MONTHS and still just struggle with keeping it clean, let alone pretty. We got this great book, Apartment Therapy, and have spent the last couple weeks trying to take its lessons to heart.

We've been rearranging what little furniture we have, talking about color (a lot), and went to Ikea on Saturday night to spend the remainder of our Christmas money. We even bought a couch! Yay!

It goes in our TV room, which we have some really nerdy ideas for... but I'm getting ahead of myself.

It's comfy. Oh yes. So cushy. Ignore the fact that the throw pillows don't go together at all.

If you're really all that interested, the other photos are here. In that last one, you can catch a glimpse of the new paint in the living room.

We're somewhere between the *before* and *after* states on this one.

Angelo wants to put up a bunch of animation cels or photos from movies over the closet, put mirrors on the doors, and a padded bench sort of thing in the space between the shelves (under the window). Here's why I think his ideas are bad: mine are so much better.

I want to buy this rug, which is super soft and fluffy, but isn't quite shag. The closet doors need some curtains -- not because I like the look (I don't), but because we can't replace or paint the doors themselves, and they're sooooooo big and ugly. I guess we probably need curtains to replace the horrid mini-blinds on the window too, huh?

That's all well and good, but here's where the nerdy part comes in: the walls. I will paint them. With murals. Of our favorite movie/TV stuff. (In this kinda style.) Frodo over the TV, Harry, Hermione, and Ron under the window, cast of Firefly and Cowboy Bebop hanging out together over the couch. Yeah?

Well, I think it's a good idea.
The website's done. In the last three and a half weeks, I've taught myself PHP, MySQL, CSS, and built a semi-professional, totally dynamic website out of it. And I'm so fucking ready to take a break from the code-monkeying. At least for a few days... we still need viable searches, a real calendar, and more include() statements than you can dream of.

Go look at it, please -- but resist your urge to submit the sign up form riddled with obscenities, as the results are emailed to my boss and coworkers.

My favorite part of the site? Meet the Staff. In true AmeriCorps fashion, we decided to draw names and write each others' bios. ("It's teambuilding.") Chris (to whom I am ETERNALLY grateful for taking over all the CSS when it started to eat my brain) wrote mine:

Jenny comes to Seattle and the Portal from San Francisco, via a one year layover in Boston to work at a doggy day care. Her previous stint as an east-coaster involved attending a college without grades. A current and/or recovering nerd, she likes good coffee, knits a mean scarf, and doesn't eat marshmallows.

That's me in a nutshell, alright.

ETA: Don't view it in Explorer, s'il vous plait. It makes baby Jesus (not to mention your good friend Jenny) cry.

ETA 2: Nevermind, Chris awesomed the CSS up again, and now it is perfect in every browser imaginable. Yes it is.


Can't sleep, the code will eat me.

I suppose this is what I get for spending all of Sunday working.

My brain is fried, and I can't sleep, and it is way too late. I keep glancing over at that stupid page that isn't quite right in Firefox, and looks so very wrong in Explorer. Fuck Explorer. And you know what else? Fuck CSS. Yes, it's better than dealing with nested tables and mountains of markup intermingling with what should be pristine code, but it's got one hell of a learning curve. Trying to implement CSS in a logical way is like writing a novel by taking all your thoughts, writing them out in cryptic code on hundreds of millions of sticky notes, and sticking them up on the Great Wall of China in random order.

This website is supposed to be done by Tuesday. It's a self-assigned, self-enforced sort of deadline, but I've been working my butt off way too hard to miss it. I have a new plan of attack:
  1. First and foremost, FUCK the design. Let someone else in the office try to tackle that one. It is not my strength, and it is certainly not a priority.
  2. Get some goddamn passwords and security up on the backend so that we can take the site live ASAP and --as much as it will break my heart to do it-- remove my database full of LOTR dummy data.
  3. Crack the whip and get the other EP staffers to upload their data, while I make some search and sort functions.
  4. Time permitting, build a dynamic calendar page. Even more time permitting, think about making it pretty.



Least productive day ever

Today was so ridiculous. I've been working like such a Huffle recently, but today... sheesh. It just wasn't meant to happen, I guess.

Accomplishments of the day:
- got coffee
- went to a planning meeting for a grant I'd never heard about before
- attended a (very interesting) forum on the achievement gap in Seattle schools that was redonculously irrelevant to our program
- got back to the office, heated up my lunch
- got a call from Angelo, saying it was snowing and that I should drive home before the freeway turned into an icy clusterfuck again
- ate my food, knit a little, and drove home before 3.

Waste of a day!

I've been making smashing progress on my Remus sweater though. I abandoned it a while ago when I realized the pattern's directions for sleeves would look awful, and couldn't figure out how to alter it (having never made a set-in sleeve sweater before). It's been in a weird unfinished-vest-like state, but last night I picked it up and did the math on some short-row shaping for top-down sleeves. I even went out and bought some beautiful buttons tonight. WILL POST PHOTOS OF THE FO SOON.

I can't wait until I've got this website up and running so I can have a little bit of my life back. I needs gets more knitting time in before Xmas.