Saturday, November 22, 2008

little by little

Little be little, inch by inch, by the yard it's hard, by the inch-what a cinch! Never stare up the stairs, just climb up the steps - little by little, inch by inch!
The first time I heard that song I thought it was silly. But as we sang it often on Wed nights, I began to appreciate the fundamental principles that it teaches - Never, ever give up. Or, as the Bible says, Be ye not weary in well doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. or at least it goes something like that.
Early Monday morning we will begin the never-ending journey to Alabama. Okay, so it's not really never-ending, but it feels a lot like it. And somewhere between Thanksgiving Day and the Iron Bowl on Saturday, my family will celebrate Christmas as we won't be together on Christmas Day. That means all Christmas stuff for my family needs to be finished by TOMORROW, and my Mom's birthday present (for Tuesday) also needs to be ready for departure.
Somewhere along the way, I got this brilliant (or not so brilliant) idea that I could duplicate a nativity set I bought at a craft show for my parents. Here's a pic of it unassembled:

Now, keep in my mind that one of my big sister's characteristics that always INFURIATED me growing up was that she thought she could do ANYTHING. The words can't, impossible, too expensive or too hard were NEVER in her vocabulary. Now, she would read up on things or talk to people for advice, but she would jump in feet first and tackle whatever it was. She failed in a lot of things, but she was also extremely successful in many things as well, SIMPLY BECAUSE SHE HAD THE COURAGE TO TRY. Unlike me, who would look at something, sigh, and think it was impossible because I didn't know how. Somewhere, somehow, I think I've adopted some of her characteristics these last ten years.
I convinced a skeptical someone to go with me to Lowe's, buy the plywood, then I hauled it home and traced around my pieces. Using my jigsaw, still new in the box from last Christmas, I hit my first snag. It didn't work properly. I sent an e-mail to the company, who told me to call a 1-800 number for tech support. Looking into the cost of postage to mail the thing back to them, I discovered I could buy a new one for almost the same price. So I head to Lowe's after work on Friday, and discover one slightly more (but with better instructions). Here's my new toy:
It cuts wonderfully (note: it does, not the cutter) I don't think my gift giver was thrilled that I purchased another one, but drastic times call for drastic measures. So I started cutting, and finished this afternoon. My pieces look great, though they don't exactly fit together very well

It's leaning toward the front and the back isn't exactly on the ground. oops! And I ran out of paint, so I guess it will go unpainted and finished, and my Dad can help me paint it this week. Won't he be excited?! (haha) And now, all I have to do is finish Mom's scrapbook for her birthday...
My Dear Understanding Hubby says that I have no concept of time. I like to think of it more in terms of climbing a mountain - little by little, inch by inch. And maybe one day I'll arrive.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


A friend of mine in college often talked about working on a car with his Dad in high school. Invariably, they would be temporarily stumped by a problem. My friend would be exasperated, and then his father would sigh and say, "We need to go get a piece of cake." My friend always thought that was ridiculous, but his father would not be swayed. After cake and coffee, they would go back out, and find a solution to the problem. While I'm neither a coffee drinker nor a mechanic, I do think there's a lot to be said for resting our brains.
I had one of those brain rests tonight. A few friends joined me for a purse party, and it was neat just talking and sharing. I needed the break from all the computer problems and busy to do list that I have. :O) I guess I could say I needed a cake break.
So tomorrow its back to the grind, and while I like to think everything will once again work like clockwork, the reality is some things will click, and other things I will have renewed mental energy to tackle. And other things I will simply shove to the back of my desk and work on after Thanksgiving break, whenever a new idea presents itself, or right before its deadline!
On a side note, the '09 Read Thru the Bible brochure that was giving me such fits the other day is going to work after all! I met with the printer yesterday on some other projects, and showed him the layout before I left, and turns out they CAN fold something that small. YEEAAAHHHH! Once I get a small .pdf shot of it I'll try to post it.'s supposed to snow tomorrow AND TOMORROW IS FRIDAY! TGIF!!!!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

realistically out of sight

to successfully complete NaNoWriMo, from now 'till the end of November I would have to write 6,500 words a day. Realistically, I don't think it's going to happen. But on a brighter note, I've written 3,200 words more than I would have done had I not started this endeavor. So while I won't reach the 50,000 mile novel mark, I'm a whole lot closer than I ever thought possible. Who knows? Maybe I'll have a creative burst of energy in December and finish the thing. (HA!)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

the grumblies

Today should be a Monday. I was up late last night unsuccessfully attempting to load our scanner and printer. Then today, a new brochure I had designed decided it was NOT going to fold properly. So after researching folds and measurements and templates, I have once again worked before I thought and ended up with a useless product that I must now re-design and re-create. bah HUMBUG!

On a happier note, I JUST SAW SNOW! It was beautiful, and I was about to inform our Human Resources person that in Alabama we go home where we belong when it snows and then it stopped. But it was neat to see.
So now I'm going to fold up this stupid little non-working 2009 Read Thru the Bible brochure and work on business cards. Maybe I'll have a better idea tomorrow.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

brain surgery

Well, the lobotomy on our computer is almost complete. I've re-installed half of our needed software (I've been questioning how much of this is really a need), installed a few e-mail addresses into the address book, and am about to call it a night. Tomorrow morning or after work I'll tackle the rest of it. It is so good to be back in my world of cyberspace!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

being bad

I've never allowed myself to check blogs at work before, but our computer at home is dying and I figured I could do it just one time until ours is fixed. If you don't hear from me in a while, you'll know why.
BUT, there are some very momentous things happening in and around the Bryan household (besides our computer dying) and I just thought I'd share them:
  1. I AM A GREAT AUNT!!!! as of 5am this morning.
  2. OUR ROAD IS GETTING PAVED or at least the part up to our driveway. They surveyed one day last week (and how many times have they done that in the last 2 years?) and when I came home Tues night there were "Road Closed" signs up. When I came home from work yesterday I had to take a detour because there were huge machines tearing down trees along the right of way. YEAAHHHHHH!!!!!
  3. I was very pleased to hear on the news this morning that the man President-elect has asked to consider being Chief of Staff has family members who live in Israel; AND CALIFORNIA PASSED THE BAN ON GAY MARRIAGE!
  4. Ten years ago Monday night Bobby and I got engaged.

It seems like there must be something else, but it escapes me. Until my link to the e world is restored, this is good-bye. :O(

Monday, November 3, 2008

Sat morning

Saturday morning we joined Jay & Betty Mashburn in Durham to tour the El Greco Exhibit: Art During the Reign of Philip III of Spain. I found it very interesting and enjoyed it thoroughly, though I would have preferred there not been quite so many people there so we could have taken our time and moved through the gallery without saying "Excuse me" for every step. The historical slide presentation made all the artwork even more interesting, as it gave the historical background for the time, as well as the pieces themselves. I think that was Bobby's favorite part. I was going copy my favorites from the website listed above to paste here, but it won't let me. And they only show two of the ones that I really truly liked. Ah well, life goes on!

Don't forget to go vote tomorrow if you haven't already. I am just SO excited this election is FINALLY almost over and that I will come home from work on Wed and not here ANY political voice mails or have any postcards or fliers in my mailbox. I just want to get this show on the road so everyone can either rejoice or moan and then get on with life. :O) How's that for good 'ol worn out patriotism?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Saturday afternoon/evening

I'm going to do this backwards and post Sat afternoon first, and tomorrow I'll share about Sat morning. For this post we're traveling to the NC State Fairgrounds...

First you had the lines: It started at the Jim Graham building, went up beside the Dorton Arena, curved down the midway and toward the little round building (as seen above), turned and went back up and around the Dorton Arena (as seen to the left), looped back down to the Mid-Way and was still growing as the doors opened.

Once inside, we were treated to good 'ol bluegrass music. Every single Republican fundraiser or rally I've attended in NC has had either bluegrass or country music played by local musicians.

Inside the Jim Graham building, there were no seats except for three small sections of bleachers, and everyone stood for nearly two hours waiting for the lines to pass security and the lady of the hour to show up.
John McCain's nice saying that plays up his military background, but one that also makes me feel like Daniel in Babylon. As I used to tell my Chinese friends, I'm a Christian first, and an American second.

Cary's "Joe the Plumber" (actually named Mike) spoke about why he was supporting McCain.

My favorite sign of the night.

The unhappy press corp who kept their arms folded in front of them most of the time.
Gov. Sarah Palin with husband Todd

And as they exit the building (you can barely see her hairdo in the far left of the pic) people are still passing caps and t-shirts forward for her to sign. Her husband did a lot of signing too, though whether he was putting her name or his I don't know.