Thanks for all the kind comments on my last post--both about the FOs and about The Brain's pay cuts. I know we're not the only people going through this (not by a long shot!) so it's nice to hear that people aren't so jaded by everyone's problems that they can't offer sympathy or support.
But enough of that. In my grand tradition of exposing all of my embarrassing quirks and foibles, I have another story for you:
The Brain and I were invited to a barbecue at one of his colleague's places last night. It was to be a small gathering: three other profs and the husband of one of them. I have been working this past week on getting back into the habit of running every day, so I was quite proud of myself for doing my full workout three days in a row. "I went running for three days this week!", I told myself, "I'm going to look so slim and sporty at this barbecue! People won't even notice that I'm the only one there without a PhD because they will be marveling at my poise and the special radiance that can only come from such a healthy specimen of the human race!" ... Then we got there. Conversation turned fairly quickly to cycling (The Brain rides with a local club), then trail running, then triathlons. Turns out that everyone else present at the gathering could kick my ass in just about any sporty endeavor you can imagine. I wasn't fully deflated, however, until the (only other) woman casually dropped a line about participating in the IronMan competition a couple of years ago. You know, while also struggling through her first year as a faculty member. So she didn't have a lot of time to train. *gulp!* Yeah...I've been unemployed for over a year and my major accomplishment is that I went running for three days in a row this week. LOL!
Must. Set. Higher. Goals. :-P (Speaking of which, is there anyone else in the San Diego area who might be interested in doing some trail running? I'm talking super beginner stuff, not those crazy-ass ultra-serious groups who meet up at 5am on Saturday mornings and run for 6 hours straight. If you're also proud of running for three days in a row, I bet we could work something out.)
Aaaanyway, I wanted to continue with my roundup of things that have been going on over the past couple of weeks. Guess what...I got a sewing machine!!! I was browsing around on Craigslist a couple weeks ago, and I came across a posting for a sewing machine in my neighborhood. This woman was moving to a smaller apartment and didn't use the machine any more, so she was happy to get rid of it. She was only asking $30 for a Kenmore machine, so I emptied my bank account and headed over to her place first thing in the morning because I was worried that the machine wouldn't last very long. It was still there, and the woman even threw in a tote bag full of never-used patterns, batting, tracing paper, safety pins, etc. She plugged it in and sewed a few things for me so I could see that it works well. It's missing a few accessories, like part of the button foot thingie, but right now I am such a newbie that I don't think I'll be sewing anything but crooked lines for a while.
I'm super excited to learn to sew now! I need to get some bobbins and a couple tiny pieces for the machine, but I have the major hurdle over with. I just got a Jo-Ann flyer in the mail yesterday with an ad for Vogue patterns at only $3.99 apiece and the usual 40% off coupon. I'll have to head over there next weekend to see if I can pick up a couple of patterns. Next time I have cash, I can get some fabric. Little by little, I'll learn to sew if it kills me!
Speaking of learning, does anyone have any recommendations for learn-to-sew books? I have checked out a few from the library to do some comparisons. So far, I have the Reader's Digest New Complete Guide to Sewing, Vogue Sewing, and The Complete Photo Guide to Sewing. If you have any opinions on these, or any other books, please weigh in!
Oh, and if anyone can explain to me what the heck a "fat quarter" is and what you use it for, that would be cool too!
Sorry for such a long post! I need to post more often so I can avoid this verbal explosion.
P.S. A super huge thank you to Dana who, after I posted about wanting a sewing machine ages ago, actually offered to sell me her Kenmore for the cost of shipping. Thank you so much, Dana! Your kindness has not been forgotten. :)