Friday, August 31, 2007

How Boring is CPE?

CPE -- Continuing Professional Education, for those not up on acronyms, is the current bane of my existence. I'm subject to 40 hours of it a year. 8 of those hours must be in "Accounting and Auditing" or A&A, which in Accountantspeak means mostly auditing. I don't do auditing; it's a good way to get yourself sued, thanks to our friends at Arthur Andersen, Enron, and WorldCom (not that I'm bitter or anything).

So how boring is 8 hours of A&A?
All it needs is the toe. The foot was completed during a particularly tedious session dealing with the finance of family business. The gentleman teaching it was trying to assign a quantitative value to the happiness derived by the family by working in the family business to calculate a rate of return on the capital of the business. (Either your eyes are now glazing over or you're going "huh?".)

Last week I attended an advanced tax class on pass through entities. You may now yawn, although I did find it more interesting than the A&A credit. Nevertheless, I worked on this:
It's the first of the Barker's Dozen ornaments from Pocket Full of Stitches, "A Papillon with a Package". No, I didn't finish all of it during the class, but I did stitch all of the package and the dog, and I got a good bit of the background done, all the while shocking the teacher by actually paying attention to what he was saying and asking questions he really couldn't answer. That's what gripes me about most CPE. It's all theoretical with very few practical applications.

Lest you think I've abandoned the wiener dogs with the canvas above, rest assured that they appear in the 11th month. :)

In other news, I've cried "uncle" and hired a professional organizer to help me with my craft room. (Actually, this was after I sat down in the hall outside of my craft room and actually cried because I couldn't find my stuff). Her name is Jenn Hanna, and the woman is wonderful! It's a long process, but it's kinda kewl because I'm finding stuff I had forgotten I had, and stuff that is so very close to finishing that it's really just a shame I put it down (like that Halloween piece we found this morning that had everything but the spider band stitched -- it will now be finished sans arachnids. I understand God had His reasons for spiders, but I am not a fan of them. Actually complete screaming fear of them is more like it. While rationally I realize I'm thousands of times their size, I know they're out to get me. Really. They're plotting. Crafty devils. And some of them can actually kill you.).

Monday, August 20, 2007

Sparkly Shiny Things

Ok. It's been a hideously long time between posts. Between my angst at my wait to get onto Ravelry and now, Richard and I went on vacation to Highlands, NC. Unfortunately, before we went, both Richard and my mom very generously shared whatever type of summer cold/flu bug they had both gotten with me, so I was as sick as the proverbial dog on vacation, and the aftereffects are still hanging on.

But at least with the altitude in Highlands and the NC mountains, I was sick about 15 degrees cooler than I would have been in Atlanta, so the trip was worth it in that regard.

This is the seventh year in a row that we've visited Highlands for our anniversary (which was Aug. 11 - 23 years!). We started going there because the town featured a very pet friendly hotel. That hotel was subsequently bought by some not so pet friendly people, so we switched to the Skyline Lodge. Our room looks like this:Not on the posh side, but very comfortable. Faces the mountains and has a very nice view. Staff is very friendly and very accomodating. Best part of all is the restaurant at the hotel, which has a patio and welcomes all three of us to dine there.Here you see one of the managers welcoming Richard and Oscar to dinner. The chef will cook up a burger especially for Oscar so His Royal Lowness can dine with us. The food is fantastic too!!!

Another highlight of our trips to Highlands is our annual visit to the Jackson Hole gem mine, where we buy buckets of dirt and pan for gem stones. In past years, we've found and had cut and mounted into very lovely pieces of jewelry garnets, topaz, green tourmaline, and emeralds.

Here you can see where you actually do the gem mining. You scoop the dirt into the boxes with screen on the bottom, then lower them into the flowing water, where all the dirt/residue is washed away, leaving you with a variety of rocks. After some experience, you learn what is a gemstone worth keeping, and what is "just a rock". Of course, folks from the mine are there to look over what you're keeping and what you're throwing away to make sure you're not throwing away any treasures.
On the right is Holly, jeweler extraordinaire, and her mom, and their family owns Jackson Hole. Every year (except on years like last year, when she's off doing something important like having a baby, so we'll let it slide) Holly helps us decide which stones would be good to cut and helps us pick out mountings. This year, I decided that earrings were in order, so here are the sparkly, shiny things Holly made for me:The top earrings are 10.77 carats of aquamarine made out of a stone that Richard found. The bottom earrings are more difficult to see, but they're 2.07 carats of watermelon tourmaline made of a stone I found. You can't see the color well, but the watermelon tourmaline is a stone with both pink and green tourmaline in layers looking like a slice of watermelon when it's cut. Very kewl! The stone was small, so I was amazed that they were able to get anything out of it, so I'm very pleased with my pretties!!!

Almost forgot Daisy....Daisy is the very active Goldendoodle shop dog at Jackson Hole. I think she was more interested in Oscar than Oscar was in her (after all, Oscar isn't a "dog person").

Tuesday, August 7, 2007


Evidently I'm not getting into Ravelry anytime soon....

Found you!
  • You signed up on July 3, 2007
  • You are #13116 on the list.
  • 4936 people are ahead of you in line.
  • 10543 people are behind you in line.
  • 33% of the list has been invited so far
At least I'm not at the end.


Thursday, August 2, 2007

We Have A Wiener!!!

im on ur kalendur...pikin out ur jale tyme.

The winning caption was submitted by Heather! So, let us know what your choice of prize is: a chart from Needlecraft Corner, a skein of sock yarn from The Loopy Ewe, or a donation in your name to the dog rescue organization of your choice.

Of course, there are no losers in this competition; there will be a contribution made in the names of our other captioners, Teresa and Jill, to Don's Orphans, an animal rescue organization run by the Animal Hospital of Towne Lake (which is Oscar's v-e-t, the wonderful Dr. Weaver).

Thanks to everyone who entered or who visited the blog to check out the contest. Oscar promises to run more contests in the future since he's gotten the hang of it. :)