Vacation, Interrupted

Alternate Title: In which Bulwer-Lytton smiles.

It was a dark and stormy night, which is not a promising beginning to the tale I am about to inflict upon you; thunder boomed, clouds rolled, rail fell, lightning flashed – it is this lightning, I think, that is the villain of this story, having most egregiously zapped my computer (third hand, slow, temperamental, but wondrously full of fabric designs unseen, most notably my Snowman collection for Winter 13/14) into a complete and utter death from which it could not be resurrected, not even in the mode that is safe.

Alas.

Last week was supposed to be a vacation: My mother and I planned to go to our friend Abigail’s cabin in North Carolina for a few days. (Isn’t Abigail wonderful?) Two days before we were scheduled to leave, my computer died. Like I wrote above (assuming you waded through the purple prose), an electrical surge zapped it.

Well, I work from home on my computer; there was little choice but to replace it immediately. So I ordered a new one that night after the storm. Even though the computer will be paid off in installments, there is no way I could do a vacation and a computer, not in the same year. This isn’t 2005, you know.

The next morning, we discovered another reason for canceling the mini-vacation – the rain caused a mud slide in the back yard. Oy. The less said of that, the better.

This week will be better: fabric will be designed; bed scarf will be quilted; bathroom will be painted; pictures will be taken; and posts will be published. All this is, of course, assuming I can stop accidentally hitting the stinkin’ caps lock on this new keyboard. ARGHHHHH!!!11!!!1!!!

 

The Easy Friday List, July 20

This is my weekly list (posted every Friday) of items that have made my life easier in some measurable way these last seven days. Maybe they can make your life easier too. Friday should be easy.

HSN: Shyeah, the Home Shopping Network. They very nicely managed to get my new computer here within a record-setting three business days. I didn’t have to pay extra shipping, either. To top it off, I even get to pay for the thing in four monthly installments, interest free. How cool izzat?

The Computer: We all knew the new computer would make the list this week. I really hate being obvious, but I put it here anyway; sometimes the obvious needs to be stated. The new computer is truly wondrous. It’s an HP P7-1235, if you’re looking for a new computer. I highly recommend it.

Derwent Inktense Water Soluble Pencils: I found these at Micheal’s recently and, after reading about them on an art review blog, decided to snap them up with a 40% off coupon. Even so, they were quite expensive and I wondered if I made a huge mistake. So I tried them out on an idea I’ve been brewing for a bit.

Bird painting on muslin by Janet Millsapps at fig+fence.

This is the under-painting for the bird embroidery on unbleached muslin. The scenery will be left alone.

I am completely in love with these pencils.

Bird painting on muslin by Janet Millsapps at fig+fence.

A picture of my work area (a.k.a the plastic folding table in the living room) just before I cleaned the area up. The original picture is on the left.

I  printed the original picture from a photography site I pinned two weeks ago.(Here’s the original blog post by Christopher Campbell. He has some amazing shots on his site. This one called to me – it’s a gorgeous shot.)

I’ve already started embroidering the bird.

The bird embroidery project by Janet Millsapps at fig+fence.

Here’s a shot of the Inktense pencils on my current workstation, the footstool in the living room, with embroidery supplies. The bird is partially embroidered at this point.

I’m so in love with these colors. Also note: M&Ms are important when embroidering as shown in the picture above. There are 8 M&Ms in the mostly empty baggie. Alas.

M&Ms: I need more M&Ms. Candy-covered chocolate makes everything easier!

Green Support Gloves: You can see one of them in the picture above. I have tendonitis in my right wrist, and these gloves have saved me some pain. Well, the gloves help – I also take regular breaks, squeeze and roll a stress ball, and have a heating pad handy. I was skeptical at first, but I do think that these gloves let me work longer.

Plastic Fantastic

I’m back in business!

In short: New computer arrived. Installing software. Copying backed up files. Learning new OS. Trying to contain excitement.

Who am I kidding? I haven’t been able to be short in a blog post since… ever.

I’m so excited about the new computer that I’m failing miserably at the containment part of the program, but the rest is going amazingly well. I’ve never had a new computer; all the old ones were hand-me-downs or refurbished or something. This one has that new computer smell. Someone should bottle it or turn it into a Little Tree or something ’cause that smell? It is fabulous.

And so is this computer! Fabulous and fast.

Am I gushing? I’m gushing. I’ll stop now, I promise.

So. Back to work on the Etchings Argyle Nine Patch test block. Back to work on the new fabric design for my Spoonflower shop. Back to work on the blog redesign. And… back to work on thinking about an Etsy shop… do people buy handcrafted these days? I’m exploring the possibilities.

And back to the new computer! Seriously, the hardest thing about it is getting used to the new keyboard… the caps lock is in a weird place. I keep hitting it and end up typing everything like I’m screaming. I’m not. If I comment on your blog in all caps, I’m not screaming at you: I hit the stinkin’ caps lock by mistake and didn’t catch it in time. That hasn’t happened yet, but it will. It’s inevitable.