I'm playing Silent Night for Midnight Mass. I've been practicing and last week tried a sound check. The amp didn't work. Rats.
So I asked my guitar teacher, and he said, "Change your battery." The pickup in my Seagull Artist guitar uses a 9-V battery and I hadn't changed it in a while. To be truthful, I don't actually play it as much in this church as I did in my other church; so it's not "powered up" a lot.
|All strung up|
I had just said to Jeff, my teacher, "Yeah, I know I need to change strings, but I don't want to do that before Christmas." No, he agreed -- it would not be the best idea, because new strings take a while to "settle in" and stretch to where they can hold a tuning for a while.
Yeah, you know what's coming. I re-tuned and snapped the high E string. Well crap. However, I have strings, so I didn't have to go run to the store (thankfully). I figured I'd just change that high E string. Which I did. Then I continued tuning.
And snapped the low E string. Which is pretty hard to do, I gotta say. But hey, I managed just fine. Double-crap. TRIPLE-crap.
Because, unless you're under a stump somewhere, Christmas Eve is THREE DAYS AWAY. I mean, I'm counting all the way UP to the Mass, which is at 11 p.m. on Christmas Eve. And you have to subtract the 2 hours I'll be at Mass on Sunday, plus the "several" hours I'll be gone on Christmas Eve between my mom's party, an open house and Midnight Mass.
On the other hand...that gets me out of staying at the open house for long. "I have to go home to get my guitar ready for church." Yeah, that works for me!
Muttering nasty things about strings and batteries, I removed all of the old strings. As long as I had the strings off, I figured I might as well clean the fret board and polish it up. I do that once a year anyway.
We're all re-tuned now and I've got the guitar sitting in the living room. I'm playing it every 10-15 minutes or so, and re-tuning. I'll be doing that for the next few days. I'm taking this guitar to church so that we can do one more sound check and a quick rehearsal with the choir. But all day today, as much as I can tomorrow and all day Monday... playing every 10 minutes or so. I have to balance it with other things, so my fingers don't get messed up.
I'm just not happy. Even if I use the other guitar, I still have to change THAT battery. Risking, because of the older strings, another snapping issue.
I just sigh. It'll all work out, right? I have faith. And sore fingers.
The sweater is taking shape. I'm almost at the second buttonhole, and the yoke is definitely looking "yoke-ish." It's a garter-stitch design where the garter stitch comes right to the top of your bust. By design. It has 3 pretty good-sized buttons (7/8") and there are design notes that recommend that even if you THINK you want to make it longer at the yoke, you probably shouldn't, because the garter stitch, for those of us carrying a bigger load up-front, won't lay right. Especially with those larger buttons. You can lengthen it at the body, which I might do, if I find that I want it a bit longer. There's nothing much to show, because I'm just going back and forth, and it looks just a little bigger than what I showed you the other day.
I'm going to see if Kid #2's friend can make me some glass buttons. That would be cool. It's a hand-wash item, so I don't worry too much about the buttons. They don't have to be a shank-style button. They can be flat.
I'm also considering perhaps polymer clay buttons, but I have to do some research as to how you handle the hand-washing with those.
|First Tray of the Season|
I love it when people like my baking. By the way, if you want a nice cookie tray, snag those small "fruit platters" you get from the deli. I have been saving those from various events. They're scalloped, they're red. They're the perfect size for a good cookie tray.
I have a metal one for my mom's party: it's got a snowman on it. I probably have a zillion Christmas themed trays and containers, but believe me, they will get used.
On the tray, in no particular order, are the following: potica; pineapple crescents; snickerdoodles; biscotti; carrot-pineapple bread; one MONSTER M & M cookie; triple chocolate cookies; Yin/Yan peanut butter & chocolate cookies, and Aunt Mary's oatmeal cookies; oh, and carrot cookies. Oh, and cranberry white-chocolate-chip cookies.
I had no room for: kolaches, cream cheese mint candies, carrot-poppy bread.
Kid #2 is making Rolo cookies and chocolate banana bread. I have bananas that need to go. Well, I may get that banana bread in the oven; he's at his brother's house, so time could fly before he gets back. We are not (sorry, Kid #1) making Snow on the Mountain cookies. As it is, my mom may grab a tray from me for her hairdresser, which is fine with me.
And I have an open house that our hostess is calling "Christmas Leftover Open House" -- some of these goodies will go there for sure. Out of my house, not on my hips.
Instead of pigging out on Christmas cookies (which would be very easy because I tend to stress-eat), I'm drinking LOTS of tea. Right now, in my cup, I have Organic India's Tulsi Tea. It's a combination of 3 different types of basil. The Holy Basil is a plant common in almost every Indian household. It's a powerful antioxidant and it tastes good, too. I usually drink one or two of these a day. And it's got no caffeine, so it's good any time.
Their Honey Chamomile is good too. I like the fact that they're a fair trade company, and I use several of their supplements as well. That's my shameless plug for the day.
Oh my. Tar-jayyyyy is in trouble. Upwards of 40 million people have had their data swiped. Between Black Friday and about mid-December.
I asked Hubby to check our online statements. I'm not incapable, but he watches them about every other day, so he's in the habit. I'm not. So far, I haven't heard that we've been hacked; and today's Trib said that credit card companies were emailing affected customers. I did alert Kid #2, because he shops there.
Of course, people are trying to file lawsuits. And some are saying that Target "didn't respond quickly enough." Maybe. But maybe they just didn't monitor it as well as they should have. Yes, they should have been at least 5 times as vigilant, particularly in this vulnerable economy.
But hackers are so crafty lately -- I can't imagine being in a big business and having to deal with this stuff.
|2013 Frosty Friends|
This may be all the "nice" snow we see. We have a winter storm watch, but so far it's just icy. Well, I shouldn't say "just" - I hate ice. Lucky for me, I truly do not have to go anywhere today. I can stay home and knit and practice.
And knit some more and practice some more.