Saturday, December 30, 2006

bye bye Michael

Well yesterday was my contractor's last day. It was sad to see him go. I enjoyed working with him. I couldn't have asked for a better contractor. He was very dedicated to getting everything done and put in a lot of extra hours.

I'm not really sure if management is really my cup of tea though. I think I prefer being a worker bee. Doug has been covering for his manager this week and it has been pretty hellish. He is always getting calls all hours of the night and weekends to do stupid stuff for upper management or to join conference calls every time something goes wrong. Being in management requires a lot of patience and having to be responsible for other people. It wasn't too bad with one person but I can't imagine managing a whole team unless they were all a bunch of Michael's. ;)

Oh and to top it off, as a goodbye present he got me two tickets to the Snow Patrol concert in Feb and left me his fancy shmancy mouse. Wasn't that sweet? I hope he enjoys his time off and is able to find another job when the time is right.

Christmas

My Christmas was pretty mellow this year. No one came to visit and I didn't go visit anyone. Lots of presents were opened and there's still some late presents trickling in from the family.

I put together a wishlist every year which Doug and my family go off of. I decided to start doing it this way because I used to always end up getting a bunch of stuff I didn't really want. So this has worked out pretty well until this year... I ended up getting two of a bunch of stuff. Doug and my family didn't communicate on what they were getting me so I ended up with two PC tuner cards, two down comforters, and two sets of frying pans. I also got a 19" flat screen monitor, backup drive, more wax for making candles, and a few sweaters.

We had an outage in our network at work and Doug ended up getting called just about when we were going to eat. He ended up having to stay on a conf call for hours. Nice timing, but he was able to eat dinner a the table I set with my new china I got last year so it ended up working out ok. I took a pic of the dinner table with my cell phone. We had turkey breast, shrimp, salad, and asparagus.

Multimedia message

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Lucky

I somehow lucked out this past week. We had the worst storm in decades, breaking wind records, come through the area taking power out to over 1.5 million people. Hundreds of thousands are still without power, including several people I work with and Doug. Temps are in the 30's and I feel bad for those people who have no power, no heat, no hot water, etc. And now people are dying and getting sick from carbon monoxide poisoning cuz they're bringing their bbq's inside the house to cook and keep warm.

The worst part of the storm hit on Thursday night. Power was pretty much out everywhere on Friday morning. Some people managed to make it to work and ended up having to go back home because the doors were locked and there was no power. I feel bad for those people that drove in. It probably took them a while to get there with all the lights out and roads closed all over.

I lost power off and on Thursday night but it was back up when I woke up Friday. I took Friday off so I didn't even have to think about trying to go in to work. I woke up to no cable and no cell phone service though. The cable service came back later that afternoon and cell service came back saturday afternoon.

I'm not looking forward to the commute to work tomorrow morning. I did find out we do have power now at work but there are several roads closed that we normally take to work so we are going to have to take an alternate route which I'm guessing will take at least 2 hours. If I didn't have to drive the vanpool tomorrow I would work from home.

Here's just one of many pics I've seen of the storm damage:


More can be found on King 5's website

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

I thought this was pretty funny. The Seatac Christmas holiday tree fiasco made it on the Colbert Report.



Wednesday, December 06, 2006

RIP James Kim

Doug and I watch CNET on Tivo every week. They give reviews of hot gadgets and stuff. James Kim was a senior editor and always had a segment on the show where he would talk about kewl new electronic gadgets like phones and mp3 players. He was visiting the Pacific Northwest with his family and they got stranded on their way back home. His family was found but he was not. He left the family to seek help but ended up getting lost and was not found for days. He left a trail of clothes and other items behind to help searchers find him but it was too late. He was found dead. Rest in Peace James Kim!


Here's the story .

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Lotion is made

I finally got around to making some lotion to go along with the soaps I've been making. Wow is making lotion a lot easier. There may be more stuff that goes into it but it is much easier to cleanup afterwards and you don't have to wait a long time for it to cool like soap. I made one batch and have enough containers to make two more before Christmas. My first batch is Lavender and I put a bit of patchouli in it as well. I really like the way it turned out. I have 2 oz jars and 4 oz bottles of it. I put them up on my store but I am probably going to end up giving most of them away for Christmas presents. So if you want any you better buy them quick cuz they are going to be gone soon. I plan on making more after Christmas though. I just need to get some more jars.

Lavender lotion

Saturday, November 25, 2006

North Carolina

Well I'm off to North Carolina for a week. Leaving early Sunday morning and will be back home Saturday afternoon. It's been a while since I traveled for work. I don't think I went anywhere last year. This time its for Tekelec STP training. I've actually wanted to take this class for a while now but my previous manager didn't think it was necessary since it was thought that we wouldn't be using this equipment much longer with IP coming into the picture but I guess he was wrong. Instead, Tekelec's product does IP and it doesn't look like we are going to be getting rid of it any time soon.

I don't know anyone in NC but I have a couple of co-workers that are taking the training too and I've got a list of restaurants to check out from another co-worker who recently took the training too. I hear they have some interesting BBQ places.

Monday, November 20, 2006

hutch

Doug and I finally got the hutch for my new desk put together. Yeah I finally decided to keep it. It seemed easier than trying to return it. I think it looks a lot nicer with the hutch and gives me more space to stick stuff. The hutch was a lot easier to put together than the desk.


desk hutch


Not sure what my next project will be for the house. I have a few things that need doing.

- Need to get a ceilling light installed in the computer room
- Would like a ceiling fan in the living room
- Thought about getting a gas fireplace, but not sure where I would put one and not sure if I want to spend the money for one
- would like to get the laundry room finished
- The cable wiring needs fixing. I currently can only have a TV in one room right now, even though there are cable hookups in the computer room, bedroom, and downstairs. I would like to be able to get my other tv working in the bedroom and get a tv tuner card for one of my other computers so I can watch tv while I play on the computer. I think Jamie messed up some wiring in the attic.
- next year I need to get those pesky blackberries taken care of
- I'm thinking about getting a tankless water heater next year
- Really need to stain the front stairs coming up to the front door in the spring

So much to do so little money...

Monday, November 13, 2006

25for25 at Ponti

It's that time of year again. Seattle has it's 25for25 restaurant deal. I think they do it twice a year. We always seem to miss out on it. What is it? Well 25 of some of the best restaurants in the Seattle area are serving 3 course dinners for $25 per person. It's a great deal. You get an appetizer, entree, and dessert for $25 drinks are extra. We went to try out Ponti this weekend but when we got there found out this deal only applied to Sunday through Thursday. I guess I didn't read the fine print. We decided to stay and we ended up paying a bit more than what we had originally planned. It was delicious though. We got an awesome seat too. They were packed so they ended up sitting us in the bar, which we didn't mind cuz we got the best seat in the house. Right in front of the fire place. Everyone was eying our table. I think they were waiting for us to leave so they could snag it. For dinner, we started by sharing a caesar salad. For an entree I had Halibut with garlic mashed potatoes and green beans. Doug had salmon, green beans, and a bunch of other veggies. It was the best meal I've had in a while. And I think this is a first for me... I actually ate everything on my plate. I never am able to eat everything on my plate, ever. It was kinda weird. I didn't leave any room for dessert though. Nothing really jumped out at me as a must have. If they had tiramisu I would have had to have it. That's the only desert I just can't pass up.

This wednesday we are planning on going to the Barking Frog in Woodinville for their 25for25 special. I think this is what I will be having: Grand Marnier Prawns for my appetizer, I haven't decided between Braised Oxtails & Pappardella or Roasted Wisconsin Pheasant Breast for my entree and for dessert I'll probably get Warm Chocolate Gateau, though I don't know what Gateau is and I'm not really sure what Oxtails are either. I think I need to do some research.

I also want to go to Tulio. My vanpool driver is going I think this week and I can't wait to hear her feedback. The menu sounds great. I can't even decide between the three entree choices, they all sound so good... Chicken with Caramelized Garlic and Sage, Crab filled Tortelli, and Lavender Rack of Pork. And they have tiramisu!!! Got to go there!
Ponti Seafood Grill on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Vegas

Got back from Vegas last night to come home to flooding. Not to worry my house is fine but downtown area wasn't so lucky. I drove around this morning to take a few pics of the floods but the water had already receded so there wasn't much to take a pic of. I wasn't able to see much on my way home last night because it was already dark. I could see some reflections of light in the streets so I knew there was water and the roads were closed. It is still raining today but we are supposed to be getting a break tomorrow before the rains return. Since I didn't get any flood pics I'll share one with you that I found on one of the local news sites. This is from downtown Sultan. I usually drive this road every day to and from work.



Michael, my contractor, took some flood pics on his way home from work yesterday and they can be found on his Flickr page.

I didn't get any flood pics but I did get a few Vegas pics.

This is my favorite hotel, the Bellagio:
Bellagio

We stayed at Bally's which is right across the street from the Bellagio.
Ballys

You can see the rest on my Flickr page.

We went to a couple of buffet's. One at the Flamingo and one in our hotel at Bally's. I liked Bally's buffet better. Both had some pretty good food though. I can't even remember what all I ate but I'll mention a few things I can remember. I had some mashed tatos, salmon, swordfish, crab legs, sushi, chicken coleslaw, green salad, steak, green beans, sweet & sour chicken, shrimp coctail, breaded shrimp, and more I can't remember.

We spent a little time gambling but not too much. We started out with a little bit of slots for my mom. We aren't big slot machiners but I told my mom I'd play a few for her and I did and I didn't win the big one. We also played some bar video poker. Didn't do much there either but we did get a few drinks comped so I guess it was worth it. We decided to take the free shuttle from Bally's to the Rio in search of some $5 blackjack tables of which we found none. The Gold Coast was nearby and I was pretty sure they had some so we walked over there and they did in fact have some. So I sat down and had a rough start but things started looking up and I turned $40 into $100 not too bad. I decided to quit while I was ahead and we headed back to our hotel to watch Seattle spank Oakland in Monday night football. I really didn't think they'd win. We both put bets down on the game. Doug picked Seattle and I picked Oakland. I obviously lost. We watched the first half on the big screen at the Indigo Lounge in Ballys then went to eat at the buffet. Later we decided to try some tables at Bally's I had to settle for $10 blackjack an got spanked. Lost the winnings I made at the Gold Coast so I came out about even for the trip. They really need some $5 tables at Bally's!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Halloween Party

Pics are up on my Flickr page from the annual Mike & Jazz Halloween party. I say annual because I think we've gone at least 3 years in a row now. So to us it is an annual event. Doug dressed up as a skeleton and I'm not sure what I was really dressed up as. I guess you could call me silver girl. I just put together something with as much silver as I could find. Some thought I might be a disco girl, I guess that works too. Anyway you can only see my pics if you are listed as a friend so if you need me to add you let me know your email so I can add you to my list.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Soap Scents

Here's a list of all the fragrances I have. Let me know if you have any special requests. I'm planning on making some Lily of the Valley soap next. Uncertain what to make after that.

Apple Jack Peel (soap done)
Black Magic
Blackberry Sage
Cherry Sandalwood
Cinnamon Bayberry
Cinnamon Stix
Cool Water (soap done)
Cucumber (on it's way)
Eucalyptus (soap done)
Fudge Brownies
Hazelnut Coffee
Lemongrass EO
Lilac
Lilac Blossom
Lily of the Valley (soap done 10/25)
Magnolia
Mulberry
Oatmeal Milk & Honey (soap done)
Patchouli
Rose Boquet
Rosemary
Sandalwood Amber (soap done mixed with sweetgrass)
Soothing Lavendar (soap done but not very strong)
Sweet Lavendar
Sweetgrass (soap done mixed with sandalwood amber)
Tea Tree EO
Vanilla #1
Vanilla #2

Thursday, October 19, 2006

funny fake Blackberry add

ok I stole this from Joygantic's Blog. I thought it was funny enough to share:

Sunday, October 08, 2006

New Desk

I finally decided to buy a new desk for my computer room. Doug came over and helped me put it together. It went together pretty well. It started out kind of slow but once we got all the screws labeled so we knew what was what it went a lot better. Not all of the pieces were labeled either, but wasn't too hard to get figured out.

Here's the before shot:


Here's the after shot:


I think it looks much much better, I like it. Now I need to figure out what to do with my old desk... I also bought a hutch but I'm debating whether or not I should take it bck or not. Here's a pic of what the desk/hutch look like. What do you think should I keep it? If I kept it I would have to move my huge monitor from the corner of the desk

Monday, September 25, 2006

Melakwa Lake

The summer is just about over and the nice weather is coming close to an end. Soon it will be rain for months on end and the trails will be covered in snow. It seemed like the perfect weekend for a hike. The only hikes I've been on this year have been pretty small. A couple times down to Snoqualmie Falls (.5 miles) and a bit of hiking in Great Falls during my visit this year and that's about it. Michael suggested Melakwa Lake. I don't think I had heard of this Lake before but I have heard of Denny Creek. The Denny Creek trail leads to Melakwa Lake. It's a 9 mile round trip and is rated a 2 out of 5 difficulty in my NW Hiking guide. I think I would have rated it a 3 at least. It's fairly long and pretty steep in a few places. It's one of the most popular trails around.

There was actually a ranger guarding the entrance to the parking lot to make sure people had their trail passes, which you can get for $5 at a vending machine at the ranger station. We happened to not have one so had to drive about 2 miles to the ranger station to get one. We started off a little late, around 1:30 pm. Some of the early birds were already leaving so that at least opened up a few parking spots. The parking is pretty limited. We ended up not getting back to the car till nearly 7:30 and it was starting to get dark fast. We luckily made it back to the car before it got too dark.

I noticed when I got to the car that my left back tire wasn't even touching the ground. I had to kind of park near a ditch so the front end was down a bit. I went to back up and it wouldn't budge. Doug was outside trying to help but it just wouldn't move. Then I realized I had the parking break on. Duh! After realizing that I was able to back out with a little help from Doug.

Pics from the hike are posted on my site.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Concert Month

So October is going to be concert month for me and Doug this year. When I went for coffee this week at Victor's, the best coffee evar, I picked up a copy of The Stranger, a local alternative newspaper. I looked through it during lunch on Friday and found several bands that I want to see in October. The only concerts we've been to this year have been symphonys. We saw the Seattle Symphony and we saw Jav play in Vancouver with the Minnesota Symphonic Winds.

This is what we have tickets for in October:
10/1 - Dropkick Murphys, a fun Irish band
10/6 - Epica, a dutch symphonic metal band I was introduced to by a friend's daughter
10/16 - Kasabian, a rock band you may have heard a couple of their songs on the radio. And I just found out they had a new album come out in August that I didn't know about. I'm going to have to check that out before we go to their concert!

So we are going to have a busy month in October.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Uncles

My mom's brothers are not what you'd call SMRT. My parents live in MT. You can't really find any fresh roasted peppers out there but they are all over the place in Colorado where the rest of my mom's family lives. Her brothers decided to send her some. I don't know if they froze it first but it would make sense I guess. But they did think about keeping it cool. Guess how they did that. Ice cubes... Makes sense right? It seems they didn't put the ice cubes in a baggy or anything just right there in the box with the roasted chilies. Guess how far it made it. All the way to Denver, CO. Not very far. To say the least, the package did not make it to my mom. They ended up returning it. I can't imagine what kind of shape it was in when it got back to them but the chili was no good. I guess it was the thought that counts.

I thought I saw a roasted chili stand in Woodinville the other day. I'm going to go by there again this week and if it was what I thought it was I think I'll pick some up for my mom.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Makin Stuff

So I've made a few things since my last post.

I made another batch of soap this will be my 4th. I decided to try a new ingredient this time. I went to Larry's Market by work. This is like a specialty foo foo fancy grocery store. I wouldn't buy everyday groceries there cuz it's expensive but I sometimes go there and pick up something for lunch or to snack on. They also have stuff that a normal grocery store doesn't have like dozens of different kinds of oils that are great for making soap with. I picked up some Almond Oil and some organic vegetable shortning made with Palm Oil. I was surprised because most vegetable shortnings are made with Soy Bean oil so I picked some up cuz I've been wanting to try palm oil. I used a mix of sweet grass and Sandalwood Amber. I love the way it smells and the soap texture is great. It did get thick really fast so the top is a little bumpy but I can deal with that. I put some brown swirls in it which actually looked purple when I did it but after I let it set they turned brown. Here's how it looked after I took it out of the mold.
Sweet Sandalwood Bar

You can buy any of the soaps I've made on my new store. I'll add more soaps to my store as I make them.

Another think I made over the weekend was some blackberry jam from handpicked blackberries that are overtaking my backyard. I've really got to do something about those things. I've thought about actually hiring one of those "kill blackberries permanently" people. Wonder how much that would cost. I was thinking it would make about 6 jars well I was wrong. It ended up making 11. I had only prepared 6 jars and after I filled those and had a bunch leftover I had to hurry up and wash and sterlize more jars. It looks like they turned out though. They all sealed properly and they all jelled well. I haven't tried them yet though. Maybe I'll open up a jar this w/e to try.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

New Contractor

Well today was the first day of the new contractor I hired. I can't believe it but there's actually someone on my team now that is geekier than me and I'm not really that geeky. My team is a bunch of geekless people. It's kind of nice actually. I think he will do a great job on this project. The other people I interviewed were just not very SMRT.

I think we broke some kind of record yesterday for the quickest new hire setup. We were able to get a few things already set up for him before he started so that helped. He has pretty much everything he needs now to get started. Only ran into one problem in that IT didn't give admin rights when the re-imaged the laptop so he can't install a few programs that he needs but hopefully that will be resolved tomorrow. Should be able to start some training tomorrow. I don't think much training will be required so that's a good thing. I'm just so stoked I was able to get someone who I think will actually do a good job.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Back from Burningman

Got back from Burningman last night. Got the van unpacked and cleaned up and returned today. I also managed to get my pics up on my site. I'm usually the first one with their pics up but this year I was beat by about 3 other people from camp :o I took 445 pics this year and ended up putting 140 up on my site here: http://agape1.net/Gallery/Burningman2006

I also put some of my favs up on flickr:


Here's just a few of the things I did while at Burningman.

- Got locked in a small cage with 3 other girls

- Got a soothing hand job at the Mile High Camp

- made a shirt out of a pair of panties at the panty camp

- got pampered at the Lavendar Lounge with lavendar water spray, head massage, and lavendar eye patches

- Played twister for over an hour at the Twisted Twister Camp

- Volunteered at Arctic Ice Camp with my PSA (Playa Security Agency) camp mates for 3 hours

- Went to a Hawaiian Luau and had roast pig

- Got a bladder infection and visited the med tent twice a day for 3 days. Darn I didn't get a pic of the med tent.

That covers some of the excitement I had over the course of last week.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Burningman Bound

Doug and I are gearing up for our trip to Burningman. We're leaving on Saturday and will return Sept 5th. This will be my 3rd trip and Doug's 4th. Our camp has a great location this year. We'll be pretty close to Center camp which is where a lot of the action is. We go there every morning to buy ice so the closer you are to center camp the better. Our camp this year is called PSA (Playa Security Agency) We've got uniforms and badges and will be patroling the playa keeping people safe. We'll have a threat level indicator at our camp and will serve colored drinks depending on what the threat level is.

I've only just begun to check out the other theme camps that are going to be there. I've just breifly looked at the ones that will be near us. It would take a month to check out every one. There's going to be 542 theme camps this year! Here's a few of the ones that are going to be near us:

Gnome camp - You can adopt a gnome and they will give you a disposable camera to take pics of the gnome during the week. They're having a party on friday where they will serve drinks and you can return the camera and they'll post the pics online.

Lavendar Lounge - they'll have a cooling lavendar mist, air beds, lavendar eye mask, head vibration massage. mmm doesn't that sound nice?

Panty Camp - Actually this one isn't near us but I thought it was kinda funny. They have a panty pavilion made completely of panties (I hope they're clean)

Smoochdome - well that's pretty self explanitary

The Sprawl - Every morning they provide sunscreen and will slather it on for you and give you lemonade and cookies

Wattos Junk Yard - a place to exchange and fix all star wars equipment, mainly light sabers. (uhhh hmm too bad I don't have any star wars equipment, guess that's one camp I won't need to visit)

We also have some friends that are staying at some other theme camps:
Firemuse WOW! Circus - There should be lots of fire throwing and acrobatics and who knows what at this camp.

There's another group of people but I still need to find out what camp they'll be at. They're bringing the rocket bus we worked so hard on a few years ago. They've transformed it some more and it will apparently even have a rooftop dance floor on it. Can't wait to see it!

Anyway that's just a few of the hundreds of camps that will be there. I'll be sure to take lots of pics!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

New kitchen floor!

I worked from home today so I could have my new kitchen floor installed. It was real short notice. They called me yesterday to schedule it and they had a cancellation the next day so here they came. It took about 3 hours to install. They wouldn't disconnect the gas from my oven so I had to do that myself. Actually my parents happened to be visiting and my dad disconnected it but I reconnected it myself because they left back for Montana this morning. It wans't too hard. I've got some before and after pics up.

Before:
kitchen before

After:
kitchen after

Soapies

My first batch of soap was pretty sad looking. I've made a few more batches since then and they look much better than the first. I also bought a soap shaver/beveler so was able to cleanup that first batch and it looks much better now. Here's what I've made thus far:

Batch #1 - Lavendar (post cleanup)
lavendar

Batch #2 - Eucalyptus Swirl
eucalyptus swirl

Batch #3 - OMH (Oatmeal, Milk, and Honey)
OMH

Just took the OMH out of the mold yesterday so I haven't cleaned that one up yet it will look much better when I do.

I think my next batch may be patchoulli with sweet grass and then maybe i'll try some goats milk soap with the OMH fragrance.

If anyone wants to give one a try you can have a bar for $4! Please note they take 4-6 weeks after I take them out of the mold to cure so some of them won't be ready for a couple of weeks.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Postcard

I decided to design a post card for Burningman this year. I ordered 100 of them. I designed it from pics I've taken at previous Burningmans. I think it turned out pretty good.

Burningman Postcard

Monday, July 24, 2006

Family visit pics

Pics are finally up from my brother's visit and from my visit to MT. They're not all on one page I created pages for the various places I went.

-Snoqualmie Falls in WA
-Giant Springs in Great Falls
-Gates of the Mountains near Helena, MT
-Geo, my brother's cat
-Great Falls index of various pics at parents house

I think that's all of em!

Saturday, July 22, 2006

holy hotness

I'm back from the hotness that was Montana with my parents who have no AC back to my WA which is just as hot and I have no AC. I got home to an 89 degree house and it got up to 92 in the house. I don't think I've ever seen it that hot in my house before. I'm not sure my thermostat goes above 92 degrees. You know it's hot when the temp on your thermostat starts blinking. I have a fan setting on my thermostat which I don't think I've ever used before. I decided to turn it on with the cool setting. Whoa the temp stopped blinking when I did that. That's a good thing I guess. The temp has gone down 1 degree already since I turned it on about 5 mins ago. We'll see how good this fan works. I've set myself up a little bed downstairs in case it doesn't cool off enough to sleep. I sure as heck ain't sleeping in a 90 degree bed that's for sure. I don't think my parents place even got that hot. It's almost 10 degrees warmer inside the house than it is out. Is it time to invest in A/C?

Friday, July 14, 2006

Montana Bound

Leaving tomorrow for a week in Montana. Visiting the family and a few friends that still live there. I'll probably bring my laptop so I may be on a bit depending how busy I am.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

soap pic

Here's a pic of my soap after taking it out of the mold. It was kinda hard to get out but it came out eventually. My bro helped me get it out.

soap

Sunday, July 09, 2006

First Soap Making Experience

Thought I would post and let you all know how my first attempt at soap
making went. All in all I think it went pretty well. Only one thing
didn't go as well as I had hoped. I bought some dye for soap making but
either the lye ate it up or I didn't put enough in because it doesn't look
like it changed color at all after I put it in. I did mix it with water
before I added it but it doesn't look like it took. Not a big deal.
Everything else seemed to go well. Thanks to Serra for being online while
I was making my soap so I could ask questions while I was making it.
Here's the recipe I ended up using with Serra's helpful suggestions I
ended up adding a few more things to my recipe than I had originally
planned.

2 oz castor oil
6 oz coconut oil
2 oz mango butter
10 oz olive oil
2 oz palm kernel
2 oz shea butter
8 oz lard
10 oz water
4.3 oz lye

I also found it might be a good idea to get a 2nd thermometer and a scale
that goes to two decimal places would also be helpful. I also used
lavendar scent for this batch. I filled up the mini mold that holds 9 bars and I scraped the bowl with a spatchula and put the scrapings into a single mold I got
from Ben Franklin. The soap is currently in the garage inside a plastic
grocery bag and covered in a blanket. Tomorrow I'll check on it and
attempt to get the soap out of the molds.

-Paula

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Soap

As most of you know I've been making soy candles for a couple of years now mostly as gifts for friends and relatives or for myself to enjoy. Haven't gotten into the whole selling business and not sure if I will or not. If someone wants to buy some off me I wouldn't say no but I'm not going to advertise it. Anyway I've decided to delve into the world of soap making. Well I haven't started yet I am just waiting for the soap mold to arrive which should be here tomorrow from Kelsei's. I have everything else I need: Lye, Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Palm Kernel Oil, Mango Butter, and Shea Butter. That should make a pretty good soap. I think my first concotion will be a lavendar soap. I have a sample of some of Serra's Oatmeal, Milk, and Honey scent which I've found to love that scent after buying a bar of it from a guy at work who's wife makes soap and I just love it. Serra claims she has the best but so does Rita at Kelsei's so I might have to try both and see for myself which one is really the best.

Friday, June 30, 2006

Birthday goodies

Birthday goodies are starting to roll in from the parents. I told them not to bother shipping anything since I'm driving out to MT in a couple weeks I can just pick the stuff up when I go out but since they are starting to buy most of their stuff online these days they are just having stuff shipped to me. There will be some stuff for me to pick up while I'm there though. So far I've gotten candle wax, candle scent, gift cert for Home Depot and an 8 piece china set. Luckily none of the pices broke in the mail. I was pretty impressed/

Here's a pic of the new china:
china

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Bye Bye IM's

Well it looks like Cingular finally blocked our IM programs. Bye Bye MSN Msgr, Bye Bye Yahoo Msgr, Bye Bye AIM.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Another job update

Job situation

I posted before about a manager job I was thinking about applying for. Well I applied and I sat through 4 hours of interviews which I thought went alright. The first one was the hardest. It's been about 7 years since I've interviewed for a job and it was a little tough. After the first one though the rest were a breeze.

My manager is holding onto a promotion until I decide what I want to do. If he sends it in to HR then I most likely wouldn't be able to take this job so I thought it was nice of him to wait. Waiting doesn't lose me anything the raise I'm getting with the promotion will be back dated to April 1. The more I thought about the manager job the more I realized I didn't really want it. At least not now.

So I had a talk with my manager and he's going to submit the paperwork to HR for my promotion and raise. We also talked about an idea he had to give me more responsibility in my group. He got approval for me to hire my own contractor. He got the approval for one and is going to try to get me two. These will be people that I will get to hire myself. I will have to call around to contacting companies, interview the candidates, pick one or two and give em stuff to do. Sounds kind of fun. It will be like being a manager only I don't have to worry about doing employee reviews and all that crap cuz they will be contractors. I also need to write up some job descriptions. I've just had so much stuff to do that has fallen to the wayside because I don't have time to do it all. I'm sure I would be able to keep a couple contractors busy with stuff. I guess this would tell me if management is really what I want to get into. So I'm looking forward to this little change.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Bunnies!

Don't look moo cow you really do not want to see this. Oh you already did? Sorry I tried to warn you.

You would not believe all the tiny bunnies I found on one of my rhodies in my yard. This isn't even half of em if you can believe that. It's just one of a few clusters I found. I hope they don't get big.


Friday, June 02, 2006

Damn Orkins

I will never be doing business with the Orkinman again. I cannot believe how unorganized these people are. I don't have rats or anything like that, that I'm aware of. I called these people to take care of the yellow jacket nests that are covering my house.

Step 1: inspection. Sounds easy enough right? WRONG. They have this online form thingy you can fill out and someone will call you to make an appointment. umm ok. Fill out form click send. Hour or so later chick from Atlanta calls. Cingular HQ's are in Atlanta so when I saw the 404 area code I knew where it was coming from and I automatically thought it was people from work calling since I talk to people everyday over there. Turns out it was the Orkin people calling me to set up an appointment. Ok so I set it up for my next work from home day between 10-noon. Work from home day noon time comes and no Orkins are at my door. I call the place and they dont know what happened and they transfer me to the local Orkins in Everett who are actually doing the work for me. I talk to them and they say stuff seems to get lost when it goes through their HQ. *sigh* So I re-schedule the appt with the guy and he claims he will be the one to do the inspection and he will be there at 10:00. Not only was he not there at 10:00 he didn't come at all some other girl came and it was more like noon. She did her little inspection gave me a quote and told me they'd call and let me know when they'll come out. Oh and I forgot to mention she had the wrong address and called me asking why I wasn't home. Luckily she wasn't too far off because she showed up a few minutes later.

Step 2: Get rid of the nests. Apparently this is even harder to do than the inspection. This appointment was scheduled for the next work from home day between 10-noon. They seem to really like these hours. next work from home day come noon and no Orkins are here. I get a phone call saying they'd be here in a half hour. Well at least they were nice enough to call. The guy comes in this little truck with a ladder that looked no bigger than the ladder I have in my basement that is only tall enough for me to reach my birdfeeder. He spends about a second looking at my yellow jacket nest collection and says ummm I don't think I will be doing this today. I thought it might be cuz his ladder wasn't tall enough but I was wrong. He claims "I have never seen so many nests on one house before" and goes on to say he only brought two cans of spray and will need a case of spray. Apparently the inspection chick didn't tell the truth when explaining my yellow jacket situation. Why do you think I called professionals? If all it took was two cans I could have done it my damn self, morons. Here's a couple pics I just took to give you an idea of what I'm dealing with. This is the biggest problem and here are a few smaller ones. He wanted to come back the next day and I told him sorry I work. He asked what time I will be home from work. 5:00 I say so he says he'll try to be here at 5 the next day. That day is today and I got a call at work saying he can't make it and would like to reschedule. So I rescheduled for my next work from home day which is next Tuesday. They claim they will be out early to mid afternoon. Gee do you really think that's a good time to be spraying yellowjacket nests? I think not. And these people call themselves professionals? Do they even read the directions on the can of yellow jacket spray? I'm really getting fed up. If for some reason they don't come or can't do their work on Tuesday I'm telling them to piss off and don't come back.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Birds Birds Birds...

It's a lot more fun watching birds when you got a camera that will zoom up pretty close on them. I've been having fun taking pics of em with my new camera. The Olympus yahoo group I belong to has a monthly photo contest that I usually particpate in and this month one of the categories is birds and I'm trying to decide which of my birdy pics to submit. I just can't decide so I need your help. Please take a look at my birdy page and tell me which one you like best to help me decide which one to submit. I've only won the contest once with my Seattle pic that I submitted last year.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Inventory Manager position update

Application sent and interviews scheduled for May 31st. I say interviews because it's not just one. I'm spending almost all day in interviews. 4 of them actually. They must be highly considering me if they are going to spend that much time interviewing me. I've almost decided that I'm going to stay where I'm at and not take the position but I want to at least go to the interview(s) to check it out it's possible I may change my mind. It would have to be a real good offer for me to take it I think. The promotion that was waiting for approval on my current position from Eng IV to Eng V finally got approved last week after waiting for 3 months. Promotions have a minimum 5% raise along with them so I was pretty much expecting that. What I didn't know is that my manager requested 8%. He told me not only did the 8% get approved but the VP of our department added on another 2% for a total of 10% and it would get backdated to April 1st. My manager told me that kind of raise is pretty much unheard of in the company so there's no denying that they don't want me to leave. The upper managment knows that I'm applying for this other job and they are trying to get me to stay. The promo isn't official until my manager sends it off to HR and he is waiting for that last step until I make my decision about this manager job. If he sends it to HR I supposedly can't change jobs for a year so I wouldn't be able to take this other job if it went through.

If I don't get the manager job there is also supposedly going to be an opening in that group which I've been trying to get into for a while now. I think I would almost rather work in that group as an engineer instead of the manager. I just don't think I will be able to get my manager to wait that long since that job isn't even posted yet.

So many decisions to make...

Thursday, May 18, 2006

hanging baskets - edited

I added updated pics. I added a Lobelia to the 2nd basket and my Nasurtium has a couple blooms that were open that I wanted to get a pic of.

Geez I can't believe how expensive hanging baskets are. I usually get them when they're on sale. Apparently now is not the time of year when they are on sale. They're like $30 for get that. I'll make my own. I still have the baskets that I've bought from years past so this year I decided to make my own gosh darn it. It's way cheaper to buy the flowers and soil and do it yourself. I don't think I've actually done this before but I saw Ciscoe do it once. I decided to do a pot pourri of flowers and viney plants I've never heard of. I filled two baskets.

Basket #1
Banana Split Nasturium
Bridal Showers Bacopa
Wojo's Jem Vinca Vine
Illumination Vinca Vine
Variegated Vinca Vine

Basket #2
Beacon Silver Lamium
Paper Cascade Rhodanthe
Fan Flower Scaevola
Solaire Yellow Bidens
Lobelia added


Boy are there a lot of flowers out there. Actually now that I look at the names of these flowers I have heard of Nasturiums but that's the only one. I still haven't really found a place to hang them. The robin nest is kind of blocking the area where I normally hang them and also scaring off all of the hummingbirds. I should have taken the nest down when I had a chance. It's a huge inconvenience but now that she has babies I don't want to disturb her too much. It's also going to put a damper on my bbqing. Those babies better grow fast.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Me: 2 Squirrel: 4

I've got a war going on with the squirrel from hell in my backyard. Once in a while I see him in my birdfeeder eating up all the birdfood the little bastard. He really pigs out too. right now he's kicking my ass but I think I've got him this time. I think the war may be over but we will see.

Point #1 went to squirrel
I have a wooden birdfeeder on a wooden pole in my back made with plexiglass on the sides. Mr. squirrel broke the plexiglass on one side to get to the birdfood. I tried taping it up but it didn't last. I've had this birdfeeder since I moved in so I bought another similar one to put in it's place. Bad Idea.

Point #2 went to squirrel
He tore apart the wood on the new bird feeder. Good news is he didn't break the plexiglass.

Point #3 went to squirrel
I bought a seuet feeder. I've never had one before and who knew squirrels like suet too. Squirrels should just be birds all they eat is my bird food. So I hung the suet feeder in my tree the birds ate a little but not a whole lot so it should have lasted a long time. Well over night I noticed the suet feeder no longer in the tree. I found it about 10 yards across the yard almost completely gone. I'll give you one guess who done it. Good news is he didn't break it. Well he broke the chain off but I was able to fix it.

Point #4 went to squirrel again
putting suet feeder back in the tree was mistake #2 by me. Next thing I know the suet feeder is completely gone no where to be found the rascal took off with it and didn't even bring it back for me to refill. Not that I would have made that mistake. I did find the remains of the chain of which he took apart every single link of it and left it laying in the grass. I'm sure he was laughing at me as I picked up all the pieces. I have a feeling I will never see my suet feeder again.

Point #5 and 6 went to me! RAWR
I paid a visit to the Wild Birds Unlimited store telling them of my issues. They gave me some good suggestions and I went with it. I bought this metal cylinder thing to put around my post. The squirrel should not be able to climb up this thing therefore making my wood bird feeder safe. I ended up putting tape all around it to hold the plexiglass in place. I also bought a new bird feeder called "The Eliminator" does that sound scarey or what. It has a perch around the bottom and when more than 5 ounces of weight is put on it it closes up the feeding holes. It's made of really hard plastic for the tube and has a metal perch so he shouldn't be able to eat his way around this one. So far I havne't seen him getting any of the food out so I think I may be the winner this time. Here's a few pics of the eliminator and the old bird feeder with the metal cylinder around the base.



And yes there's a butt load of blackberry bushes in my backyard I need to get rid of them before they take over my entire backyard.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Seattle beats Minneapolis

for top city in the US for video games. Go Seattle! I don't know where they come up with these things but I came across this in a post on a Seattle blog.

A survey conducted by Sperling's BestPlaces, a web site based on the "Best Places to Live" series of articles that started twenty years ago in Money Magazine, has identified Seattle as the top city in the United States for video gamers.

The study looked at the number of game systems (including PCs, game consoles, and handheld devices) owned in the household, the number of games purchased and/or rented, the frequency of online game play, and other factors. All these factors were combined to form a single score, which then allowed various cities to be ranked. The top 15 U.S. gaming cities were as follows:

1. Seattle
2. Minneapolis-St. Paul
3. Atlanta
4. Detroit
5. Phoenix-Mesa

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Jamaica Trip Report

ok so you want to hear the details? If not then read no further.

We left SEATAC late Thursday night like 11:30 PM or something. We flew to Cincinnati and it was already morning there by the time we got there. Had a 2 hour layover there before our trip to Jamaica. Got to Jamaica around noon (they're on eastern time but don't observe daylight savings so they're actually on central time). Airport was packed with people and it seemed to take forever to get through customs. We had someone waiting for us that we had prearraged so he was ready to drive us to Negril which was about an hour and a half drive.

We arrive at our hotel in Negril called the Seastar Inn It wasn't our first choice but it got rave reviews on tripadvisor so we gave it a shot. It was a nice little place not too far from the main road and the most popular bar in Jamaica and supposedly one of the top 10 bars in the world. It was walking distance and we went there a couple of times during our stay for drinks and a bite to eat. The place is crazy busy with people before and during sunset, but after that it becomes a ghost bar. It's not all that busy during the day either. We also visited the Negril Lighthouse which was a bit of a long walk from the hotel but doable. The place ended up being closed when we decided to go but I got a few good pics. We met the owners and received a little welcome package from them, which we didn't bring back home with us. We did some snorkeling at Xtabi. It's a hotel/restaurant/bar on the cliffs and they have some caves down by the water you can explore and the snorkeling isn't too bad there. We saw some long skinny piper fish and a bunch of tiny little fish and some claimed to have seen some big tuna and a turtle but I didn't see those. We spent 3 nights in Negril.

We caught a ride to our next destination in Treasure Beach from a gal we met that is actually from Minnesota and has been living there for 6 months or something like that. We met her at the bar at our hotel and she offered to give us a ride. It turned out not to be the best decision. We ended up having to get the tire changed before we even started the drive. She doesn't own the car so she had to call someone to pay for the tire change. It took a lot of time away from our trip that we could have been spent doing something more fun. Eventually we end up at our hotel, Jake's, at Treasure Beach. I'm not sure how but we did. Treasure Beach turned out to be the best place for relaxation and laying out. It was a lot quieter than the other places we had been so far. A lot less touristy and not as many beggars in the streets. We spent some time at Dougie's Bar at Jake's. We met a bunch of people on our first night there and were invited to a little party at one of the cottages. Unfortunately all the people there were leaving the next day. We went on a Safari trip to Black River and saw crocodiles and had drinks and ate at the Pelican Bar which is out in the ocean and can only be gotten to by boat. The bad thing about this places is the mosquitos were the worst. We got eaten alive. We arranged for a taxi to come pick us up and drive us to Montego Bay for the last stretch of our trip. Two traveling nurses recommended him.

The drive from Treasure Beach to Montego Bay was the worst drive evar. It went through the mountains and there were switchbacks and bumpy roads the whole way. For the first time in a long time without being hungover, I got carsick. It was a 2 hour drive but it was a very bad one. We stayed at an All Inclusive Holiday Inn. This is the first all inclusive place I had ever been to. It was almost just like being on a cruise. There wasn't much different about it. It was the least favorite part of our trip. The views outside of the window were pretty great though. And the AC was real nice. The food was mediocre and the Jerk Hut was closed the whole time we were there, we had to wear wrist bands to get the free food/drinks, most of the people there were snooty. I don't think we really talked to anyone the whole time we were there. There were lots of kids though there was an adult only pool with a swimup bar that was nice. We were leaving to get a ride to the airport and they wanted an outrageous amount to get packed in a vanpool of people to go to the airport. We said screw that and left out of the resort locked gates and found our own ride to the airport for half the cost they were asking at the resort. Luckily the airport was not as busy on the way out as it was on the way in.

All in all it was a good trip. If we go again I think I'd rather spend the whole time in Treasure Beach.

You can check out the rest of my pics here: http://agape1.net/Gallery/jamaica

how much $ to get to work?

I found this gas calculator online that can calculate how much you pay in gas to get to work.

Me: $6.60 r/t
However I ride the vanpool twice a week and work from home once a week. But still that's a lot of dough. I should move closer to work!

Sunday, April 30, 2006

back from Jamaica

Back from Jamaica. Don't have my pics downloaded off my camera yet so be patient. While in Jamaica I found that I could not make a phone call but I could send text messages and even multimedia messages. Go figure. I knew you can post pics on flickr using your phone but I didn't know how dangit. Who'd of thought it would actually work over there. I did take a few pics with my camera phone though and since coming back I have figured out how to post one. Wish I had looked into that before I left. Oh well here's one from my phone to tide you over until I get my others posted. I'll also write more later on the trip.
Jamaica
This is the view from our hotel room in Montego Bay where we spent the last two nights.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Present from the backyard birds

So the birds in my backyard decided to get together and make give me a Christmas present. I think they're timing is a little off. I guess they don't use calendars. I've now got a lovely wreath around my back deck light fixture. I think it was very thoughtful of them. I think I will give them some sunflower seeds as a thank you.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Then & Now

I like to take pics of my yard every year and sometimes I go back and look at the old pics and see how much it has changed over the years. Thought I would post a couple of pics from then and now. The then was in 2002 and the now is well now.















Then Now





Monday, April 10, 2006

Do I want to be a manager?

So today was quite an interesting day. I got an IM from someone in another dept at work letting me know that his manager took another job and her job will be opening up. He thinks I should apply. This is a group that I get a long with great and have actually been trying to get a job in their group but they haven't had any openings other than contract positions. They always invite me out to their happy hour gatherings which I find kind of weird. I'm the only one they invite to these things that isn't in their group. It's like they think of me as being part of their group even though I'm not. So I IM'd the manager congratulating her on her new position and she asked me if I wanted her old job too. At first I didn't think so. I mean it would probably be a lot more stress but hey my job is pretty stressful too. I broke 100 open work orders in my queue today for crying out loud. I don't know how I'm going to find the time to complete them all in a timely fashion.

I have been keeping my eyes open for other opportunities and have actually thought about going into management but I haven't decided if it's really what I want to do. So the more I think about it the more I think this would be the perfect management position for me. I already know most of the people in the group and they are a smart group of folks and I get along with them pretty well. I just looked at her organization and it appears she has like 19 direct reports :o I didn't know she had that many. I think all but about 5 of them are contractors.

I think I will go ahead and apply and see what happens. If I get it great if I don't get it that's great too. If one of the other engineers gets the job and I know some are applying for it, then there will be an open position in her group and I could always apply for it. I think it would be a sure thing. I've already spoken to one of the guys that is applying and he actually told me he thinks I would be better for the position and thinks I should apply too. Wow. Me a manager. hmm

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

soap

I know lots of people that make soap and have thought about trying to make some. Well my vanpool driver's partner gave a little demonstration on soap making at their house and there is a lot more to it than making candles! So many oils and toxic chemicals go into it. at least someone made an online calculator that helps you determine how much of the toxic chemical to add based on how much of each type of oils you use. It's pretty neat.

I'm hoping to go to Zenith this weekend and get some oils and stuff so I can make my own. :D

Doh time for a meeting!
I've been crazy busy for the past few weeks at work and I would be doing work right now except our lovely database is down yet again so I'm going to make an blog post cuz I don't have anything better to do right now since just about everything I do requires me to use the database that is currently down. I was in Atlanta last week for work and got to meet a bunch of people that I work with that I've never met before. Had lots of yummy food, including my first time at a Hibachi style Japanese Steakhouse. In fact I think me and Doug might be going to one in Woodinville on Wed night.

I've been doing a bit of yard work trying to get everything ready for some planting. I might go to Flower World in Maltby on Friday and pick up a few things. I'm not sure yet what all I'm getting. A few herbs maybe something for the front yard to go against the house where there's currently a bare spot where something used to be but has been pulled out.

I also have mounds of blackberries in the backyard that need taking care of which I'm not looking forward to. I have thought about hiring someone to do that but not sure if I want to spend the money. I have no clue how much something like that would cost.

I also noticed dandellions are starting to pop up around my yard and the moss is horrible this year. Moss Out and Weed & Feed are also on my list of to do's. So much to do so little time...

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Mmmm

Woo they have Caribou Coffee in Hotlanta!

Can't get that darn coffee bean in that darn cup :( I think it's rigged!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

The Purple Store

Yes such a place actually exists. No, it's not a store that's painted purple, it's actually a store that sells nothing but purple things. purple shoes, purple clothes, purple drinkware, purple jewelry, purple luggage, purple soap, purple toys, purple cellphone face plates, purple USB flash drive, purple Minnesota Vikings Shower curtain, purple lug nuts, purple manual transmission shift knob, purple lowering springs for a Pontiac Grand Am, and a whole bunch of other purply things. I found these shoes on there aren't they cute? I have no idea what I would ever wear them with, but aren't they cute?


I'm gonna have to take Doug to this place he loves purple. The store is here in the Seattle area but they have a website you can buy stuff from too: http://www.purplestore.com

Monday, March 13, 2006

Alpaca cuteness

Doug and I went over to a co-worker's Alpaca farm this weekend. One of her alpacas just happened to have a baby the week prior so we got to see the cute lil girl. She's completely black and her name is Oprah. Named so because she's black and worth a lot of money. She was saying she could probably get around $25k for her. The females are worth more and the color also has value. I got some cute pics of the baby and the other adults. The name of her Alpaca farm is Power Line Alpaca's because there's a big power line that runs right over her property.

Here's one of my fav pics. Click on it to see the rest.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

buyouts

so I just saw something interesting in the news today: AT&T near deal to buy BellSouth: reports

What does this mean? well...

AT&T Wireless was engulfed by Cingular so AT&T Wireless no longer exists.
Cingular is owned by SBC and BS
SBC bought at&t but kept the at&t name, no more SBC
so now Cingular is owned by at&t and BS

recent news say at&t is buying BS and will keep the at&t name, no more BS

so that means Cingular will be owned just by at&t I guess and Cingular will most likely be changing their name to at&t as well.

Can they make this any more confusing?

Sounds like we are going to be one big happy at&t family again.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Stress

When I got to work this morning I found a box on my desk. I knew I had a package coming but I didn't know what would be in it. I am responsible for the Southeast Region engineering in my group. I've been working with this region for a few months now. It used to belong to a guy who no longer works for the company. It's no surprise why. He was the worst organized person and really did not do a good job. The engineering he left me with for the SE was a mess. It took me a while but I got things whipped back into shape and have received a tremendous amount of help from the region. They seem to really appreciate me too. The gal I work with the most is in Atlanta and she said she saw this thing and had to get it for me. I didn't know what it was until I opened it. I took a pic with my camera phone. She also sent me a $50 gift certificate. At first I thought it was only for use in a Cingular store but it's actually a gift certificate that works like a credit card so I can use it anywhere! woo! She so sweet.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Glassblown Candle Holder

So I decided to make a candle out of one of the things I made in my last trip to the Glassblowing Studio. Ain't it perdy?


I'm not sure when our next trip to the studio will be. It's just a hassle going all the way to Seattle to do it and then having to go back again to pick up the stuff we made. We did find that there is a studio right in Bothell, where Doug lives. We checked it out over the weekend. It's much smaller than the place in Seattle but I don't think that matters. They had fliers about with various classes they were doing but I'm not sure if they rent out the studio to people or not. That is something that we are looking for. We pretty much have down all the basics it's just practice that we need now and it would be nice to be able to do it some place closer.

Oh and in case you're wondering. This is a green tea scented candle. It's actually pretty yummy.

Friday, February 24, 2006

My work twin

So there are two Paula Thomas' that work for Cingular. ok I know twins wouldn't have the same name but I call her my twin so shush. I call her my idiot twin cuz she's an idiot. Sometimes we get eachother's emails and so we forward them to eachother if we don't think it belongs to us. Today wasn't the first time I have thought her to be an idiot, but I don't remember what the last thing she did that made me think that so I'll just give today's example.

So I get into work in the morning and I find about 6 emails from people I don't know and the content of the emails has nothing to do with me. So I look at who this was sent to and it was sent to some Ashland Call Server distribution list. That's kinda weird I've never gotten emails from there before. I figured it probably was supposed to go to the other Paula Thomas. So I look her name up in the Global Address Book and sure enough it says she's in Ashland. So I forward all these emails to her. Let me continue by doing email puppet theatre.

Me: I think these should have gone to you.
Her: replying to all 6 of the emails I sent her "wrong Paula Thomas"
Me: Aren't you in the Ashland Call Center? It says you are in the Global. These were sent to the Ashland Call Center distribution and should have gone to you not me.
Her: she replies back saying "wrong Paula Thomas I'm paula.thomas7@cingular.com"
Me: I know what your email is dumb ass (ok I didn't really say that)
Me: opening a new email, not replying to any of her emails or forwarding any of the other emails, with the subject "Ashland". "Are you at the Ashland Call Center? Reply with yes or no"
Her: yes
Me: I sit there amazed at her stupidity and reply once more "These Emails I have been getting this morning have been sent to all the employees at the Ashland Call Center of which you are one there fore they should have gone to you not me as I am in Redmond, WA not Ashland"

Didn't hear from her again and throughout the day I received several more emails for that distribution list, which I didn't bother to forward to my Idiot Twin. I finally created an email filter to auto delete any emails that came to me from that distribution list. I even called IT asking them to remove me from the list. Our IT folks are not bright... After being on hold for about 15 mins they finally end up opening up a trouble ticket to another group so who knows how long it will take to get me removed from this group.

And that's my Idiot Twin.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Glassblowing - Week 6

This saturday was the last day of our 6 week Glassblowing class. We got to make some pretty kewl things this week. Looking forward to picking it up this week. Doug made a couple of suck bowls. What you do is blow a bubble then heat up half the bubble and suck it in.

We decided to rent the studio for 4 hours on Tuesday and have the teacher there to show us some more stuff. We'll probably do that every other month or so. Doug wants to do it every month but I think that would be a bit too expensive so I'm willing to do it every other month. We might rent the studio without a teacher too just to do some practicing. We haven't decided what to have her show us how to make. There are a few things I want to learn how to do. Like make something small like a shot glass and making wine glasses. There's a lot to learn.

I probably won't be taking any more pics of us glass blowing but I'll continue to take pics of what we make and will post them in my Glassblowing gallery.

Here's a pic of the stuff we made last week. Click on it to see the rest of the pics.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Jamaica here we come!

Wow this is the first non-glassblowing post I've made in a long time. Doug and I have been trying to figure out where to go on vacation (besides Burningman) this year. At first we had decided on Prague then we saw how much it would cost and started thinking about Mexico or Nicaragua. We couldn't seem to decide. I've been checking Travelocity's Daily Low Fairs every other day or so to see if anything exciting came up. We had talked about going to Jamaica too and it was the first time I had seen it on the list so I msged Doug and he said "Buy em!" After going back and forth for a few minutes to make sure he really wanted me to buy em I did it. I sure hope we can get vacation approved :o I don't see it as being a problem but you never know.

So we'll be leaving on April 20th and returning on the 29th. That'll give us a day to recoup before going back to work. Looking forward to going some place warm. We need to do some research on where to stay and what to do.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Glassblowing - Week 5

This week went much better than last. Our normal teacher was back thank goodness. We made a bit more than last week. We learned how to wrap coils of glass around larger objects.

I took a lot more pics this week. I got a few good ones. A closeup of Doug blowing hiw own blow pipe and one of him dressed up light an astronaut. There's a bunch of gear you need to put on when you put the piece of finished glass into the oven because it is so hot. There's gloves, hat, and jacket. Some people don't wear the jacket but I always do.

Only one more class to go! Here's a pic of the lame stuff we made last week. Click on it to see the rest.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Glassblowing - Week 4

This week was a little different.... We had a substitute teach this week. From what Paula, our teacher said last week I thought we would be doing suck bowls. It sounded like it would be fun. Alas we didn't get to that. Instead our sub spent half the class showing us how to blow a ball. Finally I told him we blew a bunch of balls last week and proceeded to show him what we all did last week by showing him our stuff. He seemed a little shocked and asked what class we were on. After we told him week 4 he obviously thought we were on like week 2 or something. I don't think he thought we had ever blown a ball before. So half the class was wasted on not really accomplishing much at all. He had a slightly different technique which I guess was good to learn.

In the four hours of class I only made 2 things. one clear ball and a cup. yippee. Hopefully our real teacher will be back this week and we can make something exciting.

I'd really like to take another class but these classes are just so darn expensive. Maybe some day but I don't think it will be real soon. I didn't take as many pics this week but there are a few. I did take my first pic of Doug blowing a ball. :)


Sunday, January 29, 2006

Glassblowing - Week 3

This time we were missing one person, which made up for having an extra person last week. With only 3 people in class we were able to make a lot more stuff. I think I made 3 more paper weights, 3 more glass balls, drinking glass, and a bowl.

This week we got to learn how to transfer the glass blown object from off the blow pipe and onto a smaller pipe in order to open up one end to make a glass/bowl type thing. This process is called punting.

next week we get to make suck bowls I think. I'll tell you more about them next week.

I decided instead of filling up my flickr account with glass blowing pics I'd start a Gallery on my website for them. Below are some of the results of last week's glass. Click on the pic to see the rest of the gallery.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Glassblowing - Week 2

I think I forgot to mention that we had a substitute for our first class and I'm glad our regular instructor is back. She is much more helpful and doesn't try to do everything for us if we mess up.

We were actually a few mins late so by the time we had gotten there everyone had already picked out their paperweights they made last week so we were stuck with the leftovers. I guess it doesn't matter too much I don't remember which ones I made anyway but I don't really think we made the ones that were left. Oh well. I talked to our instructor and she marked this week's work with a colored pencil thing so we can tell them apart. I also made a note of what I made and what colors I used so I could tell which are mine more easily. I think it's also a good idea that we show up on time or even early next week.

So this week we actually got to blow glass. We did it in teams where one would blow while the other turned the blow pipe so I wasn't able to get any pics of that. I suppose I could have asked someone to take our picture but I didn't. We made a few clear balls and then a colored ornament one. We found this week was much easier than last week. Maybe taking a week to let everything soak in and think about what we could do better helped. Below is a pic of the paperweights we made last week. Click on it to see the other glassblowing pics Doug and I took.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Glassblowing - Week 1

As some of you know Doug and I are taking a Glassblowing class at SGS in Seattle. It's a 6 week class, every Saturday afternoon for 4 hours. Let me tell you, it's way harder than it looks. Unfortunately the class started the exact same time the Seahawks playoff game against the Redskins so we would miss the whole game. Lucky for us they had a big screen tv in the studio which we kept glancing at to see the score. Doug also recorded it on Tivo and we'll probably watch it next weekend. At least we'll get to fast forward through the commercials.

So anyway, on our first day we learned all about safety, some glassblowing terms, and all that jazz. We were givena syllabus that says what we'll be doing each class, but of course we forgot them a the studio. We did get to make some stuff on the first day. We made paper weights woo hoo. I don't think I've ever actually used a paper weight. Maybe cuz I've never had one... We each ended up making 3, we even got to use color. After making a couple I asked how we tell eachother's apart and they basically said they don't. You have to remember which ones you made and hope that no one takes yours. Geez. I'm pretty sure I won't remember which ones I made. I did make a clear one for practice that might be the only clear one so that one will be easy enough to tell it's mine. Will find out next saturday what I end up with I guess.

I'm going to take my camera with me next week and see if they will let me take a couple pics of people blowing glass. We didn't actually blow any glass on our first class the paperweights were just solid glass so it didn't require any blowing. Next week we'll be making glass balls which there will be actual blowing involved.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Lake Titicaca Song

misterjustin found my flickr account via my blog and mentioned that he couldn't get the lake titicaca song out of his head after seeing my Lake Titicaca pics. I didn't know what song he was talking about. Apparently it's a song that has been played on Animaniacs and it is quite a catchy little tune and now I can't get it out of my head, you can listen to it here if you have a song in your head that you want to get rid of, this will surely do the trick: http://laketiticacaanimaniacssong.ytmnd.com

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Starbucks news alert!

Starbucks is pulling Chantico from its menu next month, only a year after it launched the rich chocolate drink.

Audrey Lincoff, a spokeswoman for the Seattle-based coffee retailer, says the company will start selling two new chocolate drinks in mid-February, although details about them aren't being released yet.


Mmm can't wait to see what the new chocolate drinks will be