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Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year!

2007 will include a move across the country, a wedding, lots of knitting, running and dissertation research!

I wanted to do a little review of 2006 and goals for 2007 but we head out West to start research tomorrow morning. I need to finish laundry, packing and playing with the kitties! Since I will be in the desert, posting may be a bit sporadic (if at all) for a couple of weeks but I wish everyone the best in the new year!

P.S. Go Bears!!!

Friday, December 29, 2006

The Dress Looks Nice on You

I was previously engaged and in the excitement of wedding planning I found THE DRESS. I looked at thousands of dress and this was the only one that was everything I had ever wanted. It turns out that it was discontinued so I needed a sample in my size and color (white makes me look like death apparently). There was one 20 minutes from my house and I loved it. Bought it that day (for 40% off) and it sat in my moms' house since then.

When V and I got engaged, I figured I'd wear that dress. It was MY wedding dress, not my wedding dress for THAT wedding to THAT person. When I tried it on in May, the dress didn't seem to fit quite right but I figured a little toning up and alterations would take care of it. Last week I tried it on again and it was the same. The waist was 2 inches too high and REALLY uncomfortable for me. I just kept trying to pull the thing down.
So we went to the tailor to make sure I wasn't getting hysterical about nothing. She was no help and sort of a bitch. "Why did you buy a dress that doesn't fit you?" Ummmm, thanks? Why would you say that to a girl wearing a wedding dress and trying not to cry? There was nothing she could do about the ill fitting-ness or even the too-big top part which we just assumed would be fine. Tulle and beads make dress alterations impossible, I guess.
We spent the rest of the day looking for and finding me a new wedding dress. One bridal salon let us do everything- look through dresses, put on dresses, rip dresses (just kidding- I think). Another was stuck up and too expensive so didn't have ANYTHING for me to try on. The third was great. The second dress I tried on there was the new one, I didn't want to take it off! It is strapless, slim A-line with a lace overlay. It is champagne with ivory/silver/rum lace and looks really vintage-y. The dress looks great and I really, really like it. I might not even need alterations. From impossible alterations to none in 9 hours! It is not the dress I thought I would be wearing, but it is a great dress and most importantly, I feel great in it. I can't wait to wear it and can already see myself dancing with V in it.

We also have flowers, a caterer, a tent, a bridesmaid dress, and three registries. DJ and Officiant are still in the works but are underway. 8 days of stress but we have a wedding planned and I even got to sleep in this morning!


Autumn Sweater

So next year is the year of the sweater. I bought the yarn after much deliberation with Hamster_Grrl. I decided on Kraemer Yarns Mauch Chunky for the 'Fairly Easy Fair Isle" sweater from SnB Nation.

The brown will be the main color with olive, sage and off white accents. I hope it will become my go anywhere, do anything sweater. The one I have been wearing since I bought it at a rummage sale in 199? is getting a little too battered to continue wearing. I pointed out to my mom and Artgirl that I could wear it over my wedding dress and Artgirl threatened to burn it. I countered with demoting her from maid of honor to uninvited but you get the picture.

New sweater it is.


Wednesday, December 27, 2006

A very woozy Xmas

So my last pre-Xmas post was a little bit of a downer and things have all worked themselves out. Xmas was good- saw lots of family and friends and I got all sorts of fun stuff for my upcoming field work (a tent!), some fun stuff, and some Knitty stuff... It was a very utilitarian holiday. I only wanted things that I could use and only cane things that were useful or consumable. A lot of people got some booze from me this year. At least they will enjoy it!

Wedding stuff will be a later post but things are being decided and will be good even if they have to be different than I originally thought. Sounds ominous right? Not really, I think the stress of it is mostly over.

Now it is my relaxing day- the cats are playing and I am stilli n my pjs. A trip to a yarn store is planned and I might even work on some revisions of a manuscript that are due next month. Eh, maybe not...I still have to fill up my new tiny mp3 player =)

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Quick one...

Wednesday brought an exam to proctor, a traffic citation for expired inspection (I had been at the place the day before but didn't have my registration. grrrr), grading, car inspection, more grading, department holiday party, packing, more farewell drinks, and more packing. After the 13 hour drive, we are safely in Chicagoland. The cats were crazy upon our arrival and I found Seymour IN a closed cabinet in the middle of the night. We've done 3 wedding appointments (chocolate cake with raspberry filling!), two evenings filled with good friends, food and drinks and but only one night of sleep even close to being decent (on Amandamonkeys' floor).

I am exhusted. The coffee that usually flows like water has been hard to come by. I have been going non-stop since Tuesday and I now feel like I'm always only 45 minutes from another appointment or running 20 minutes late. After the holidays (and my trips up to WI and down to V's family) things will hopefully be calm for a day or two.
I'd like to sleep till 11, take a long shower, knit all afternoon and then eat chinese food. Here's hoping!


Sunday, December 17, 2006

You know the tune

So, this was my weekend in Christmas carol form...

12 Furry pet feet
11 Ro-ows Knitted*
10 A.M. I Slept Till
9 Pairs of Shorts Packed**
8 Blogs Caught Up On
7 Loads of Laundry
6 Friends at Hibachi
5 Kiiiinds of Truff-les***
4 Vodka drinks
3 Yarn pics
2 Miles run
and a Bears Win in Oo-oo-verrrr-TIME!!!!!!!!!

* I knit more than 12 but the song isn't 64 Days of Christmas and I probably didn't even do 64 differnet things this weekend.
** I have lost my favorite black pants. Thay are fancy but don't make me look like a caterer or a 19 year old going ot the bars. I have searched this whole damn house and they are gone. Where else could they be?
***WOW. I started making truffles tonight. They are going to be amazing. 5 kinds: Peanut butter, raspberry, chili pepper, dark chocolate, and chai tea. I think the chai and raspberry will be my favorites but V loves the peanut butter and pepper. Yum!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Super good science day!

I found out this morning that my first manuscript with my current advisor is accepted with minor revisions!

AND all my committee members agreed to sign within our deadline even if they haven't a) looked at my revisions yet (grrr) or b) want more revisions. I have to promise to do them and not just blow them off after getting the signatures. They will all be signed as of Monday! Candidacy here I come!

AND a previous student of my advisors agreed to collect data for us! He collected the first 3 years of data and I did the last one. To keep things constant (and becuase I don't have time right now) he will fill in all the blank years so that I can do the statistics, write up the paper and make everyone famous.

I'm off to the bar to celebrate!


Thursday, December 14, 2006

The squirrel is mine....the dog-gone squirrel is mine**

Squirrels terrorize our urban garden/jungle of a backyard every summer. They sit in the trees and chomp on nuts, leave half eaten tomatoes on the edges of planter boxes and scare the crap out of me by rustling in the bushes. Finally, someone is going to figure them out. A biologist at the University of Chicago is going to track city squirrels and figure out these crafty little buggers. They are really cool actually- they (the squirrels not the scientists) PRETEND to hide food and fake out the other squirrels by taking the nut with them and burying nothing. They prefer different types of food based on how much they need nutrition *right now*. They also forget where they hide things and 80% of them die under cars.

Urban ecology is far more important as urban spawn seems to grow exponentially so it is nice to see the national media picking up on it!

** Yes, the Michael Jackson/Paul McCartney song "The Girl is Mine" really did come up on my shuffling iTunes while writing this post.


Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Time trap

So I am still doing revisions on the proposal. I finished 2 rounds of comments with one committee member, another hasn't looked at either of the 2 versions I've now sent her and the other 3 are easy to please.

The fact that my papers aren't signed have kept me from sleeping the last two nights. I realize that these committee members are just trying to help me. But to a certain extent, if they want specific changes made and feel that they are really important couldn't they you know, look at them in a timely fashion when I make the changes? I don't want to come off as ungrateful or anything and I know they are super busy at this time of the semester too, but I don't think they really know why it is such a big deal... my university requires one to take a full load if you aren't to candidacy. However, they won't pay for this full load of classes if I am not on campus and I can't do my research if I am AT my university. Also, one of these days I need to sleep!
I am going to work on some grants and maybe knit a little. Until I have better news, or more zzzzs to form coherent thoughts I leave you with the animals!

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Monday, December 11, 2006

"1-2-3 Space Mountain"

The best...
HOLY CRAP did you see the Barack Obama intro to Monday night football? The set it up that even I half thought he was going to announce he was running for president. But the 'new guy' that might not have enough experience was, of course, Rex- not himself. He 'is ready...." FOR THE BEARS TO GO ALL THE WAY!! Ahhh, you see what they did there? hehehe. Even if you don't care about football it is worth finding on YouTube.
The good...
Revisions on the proposal are out to the committee to look over I did everything but the graphs they want...
I met with StatsMan at school today and will have an easy time on the stats for my next publication...
V is the best home repair guy in the world!
I finished one of the arm warmers for Dr. B! At least one wrist will be warm before January and she will know that the other is on its way....
I started a FANTASTIC alpaca eyelet scarf.... mmmm....alpaca...

The bad....
The committee wants graphs of made up data. This wouldn't be so bad except made up data is always so generic it isn't really all that informative...
I can't use ALL the data as one of my groups only has a sample size of one. I also need to collect more data to round out the groups and soon!
There are roots in the main line to our sewer....
No pics of the knits today!

The unclassifiable...
One month from today I will be here. And I will be all alone....

I hope I don't get attacked by javelina...

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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

iPod/Tunes meme

I saw this over at Dr. Brazen Hussy and thought it was super great.

In honor of the new hard drive V is getting for his pod and the new battery he order for my pod.... The iPod meme!

3rd Generation 20 gig , over 3 years old.
How many songs: 4639
First song: 'Cause I Love You by Johnny Cash
Last song: Zone Doubt by Sebedoh
Shortest: "It'd be nice if you could pull me into town" from Napoleon Dynamite (3 seconds) Shorest music containing piece: "One last "Whoo-Hoo!" for the Pullman by Sufjan Stevens
Longest: The Tain by The Decemberists. I have a Robbie Willliams song that goes long (28 and change) but that one has a hidden track at the end so it is mostly silent
Five most played songs: I have a bad habit of not listening to things on itunes (at work I tend to listen to KEXP through itunes radio). Or I don't let the song finish so it doesn't count it. I also let me battery TOTALLY die on the pod so bad that it resets and doesn't keep count for more than 2 weeks (see NEW battery V ordered me!) That said the following all have 2 full plays...
1) Sons & Daughters by The Decemberists
2) Bullet and a Target by Citizen Cope (and a post title from a few days ago...)
3) By the Time it Gets Dark by Yo La Tengo
4) Modern Girl by Sleater-Kinney
5) Since U Been Gone by Kelly Clarkson (I had my run so was rocking this in the gym)
First song that comes up on "shuffle": Everything Hits at Once by Spoon
Number of items that come up when searching for:
"sex": 5
"death": 74 (lots of Death Cab for Cutie and a double album called Death to the Pixies)
"love": 235
"you": 537
"me": 1149
"cry": 20


Long, long, long

After a Blogger induced hiatus last night- I PASSED!

As soon as a few minor revisions are completed (I get to cut out experiments instead of adding them at least!) I will officially be a PhD CANDIDATE!!

The defense was ridiculous. It was good conversation the whole time and I didn't get stumped on anything. Everyone seemed to be interested and even the committee member known throughout the department for falling asleep in every seminar stayed awake the whole time.

The only bad thing was that it was 4 HOURS LONG. 4 hours of explaining theory and hypotheses and standing in heels. I left the room for them to deliberate and promptly started crying- 4 hours is apparently too long for me to be on the spot and hold it together afterwards. I was still crying after they told me I passed (my advisor has seen this stress response from me before, while everyone else just thought I was upset for some reason despite passing). I pulled it together, had a beer, dinner and passed out at home. Now I must finish the revisions and get ready to leave PA- and one of these days I will get some more sleep...

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Monday, December 04, 2006

Between a bullet and a target

  • I taught my last class for the semester today. Yeah!!
  • I had students sit outside the classroom door until they heard I was done teaching and then walk in just to get their tests back. Jackasses.
  • I had a BOY KNITTING during my class today! That was actually pretty exciting. I think he was working on a brown scarf on needles that were less than 8s but that was all I could tell- he put it away before I could bug him about it. (I couldn't really ask him either because I don't know his name- I think it was the first time all semester he showed up).
  • I saw an amazing woman defend her dissertation this afternoon. Congrats to the newest Dr. B! (the armwarmers for her did not get finished).
  • I defend my dissertation proposal in 14 hours. I don't feel ready (but do I ever? uhhh, no.)
  • I am exhusted already and haven't slept well since last week.
  • I need to practice more in the morning.
  • I don't know what to wear. I usually dress up really nice for things like this. Any excuse to wear cute skirts and shoes! I didn't shop for new clothes or shoes (too poor) so will have to make do with whatever I might find clean in the morning. It is too cold for skirts anyways. Usually I wear red or green for presentations. Green is my favorite and red is a powerful color. I made my PPT in red so both red and green are out for this one. Light blue or white I am thinking...
  • Off to do more reading- Stay tuned!!!!

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Friday, December 01, 2006

Memorize Your Lines

So I gave my first run of my proposal defense to my advisor and a couple students nice enough to give me an hour of their precious grad student time. It went ok- I had no note cards and really hadn't even even timed it or run through it out loud yet. My advisor indicated that it was good enough as is and actually said something about not practicing too much for fear I will practice myself into worse condition (he is a little strange sometimes- the other day he just stopped by my office in the middle of the afternoon to tell me that I need to publish more. No explaination, no nothing- just walked away. Ummmmm, thanks?). Anyways, it is looking like I will be ok by Tuesday although I still feel as I have a lot of note card making, practicing and polishing to do.

Tomorrow V and I run a 5k- right AFTER the 30 degree drop in temperature. It is scheduled to be 31 degrees but sunny. Brrrr....maybe it will get me to run faster to get back inside quicker! Then it might be a long weekend huddled in cozy blankets working away and TRYING to relax. Good news for this blog- that might actually include picking up my knitting for the first time in 2 weeks!

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