Wednesday, September 19, 2007

I Heart Free Shipping

So I ordered some yarn and Addis from the States and qualified for free shipping. I assumed that meant it would take 6-8 weeks to arrive. Was I wrong! My order arrived 8 days after being shipped. Eight! That's faster than when I express mail letters.

I'm still feeling too lazy to take and post photos (hurry up five-day weekend!), but I really will do it this weekend.

My school has been going through a transition. For the past year or so, it has focused on prepping students to move abroad. The problem with this is they move abroad and then aren't our students anymore.

So, my school has decided to completely revamp itself in a way that will be vastly more profitable, but way less fun to work at. They are going to start offering morning and Saturday classes. Unfortunately, our contracts are clearly written for us to work 2:30-8:30 M-F and they just hired two new teachers (of four). They are understandably not at all keen to have their schedule change. Well, neither am I, but I'm less keen for the director to close the school due to lack of profits.

The new schedule will have Kindy classes from 10-1:30, including a 30 minute snack time to increase the joy. The Saturday classes are for SAT prep. Let the fun begin.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

I Came, I Spoke, I Conquered

So, the big news is, I gave my presentation without:
  • freezing
  • vomiting
  • speaking far louder than necessary (okay, yelling)
  • running out of things to talk about
  • logistical problems due to lack of foresight

In other words, it went well. Actually, I ran out of time and didn't get to share all of my ideas or have time for participants to play some of the games I made. I'm even thinking of submitting a proposal to present at a conference, but think maybe I shouldn't tempt fate.


Ravelry has been calling me with its siren song since I got my invite and I was *pretty* good before I did my presentation, mainly because I had so much to do and the fear of standing in front of a roomful of people with nothing to say was smothering me. As soon as I walked in the door last night, however...

It is so incredibly well thought out. I spent hours:

  • browsing through projects, looking for a lace stole project I liked enough to think I might commit to.
  • comparing various lace books to see which I more choices I liked.
  • looking at different yarns from my stash to see what other people used them for (and how much they needed).

In short, I did everything but post some of my own projects past or present or post my stash or my library or well, you get the idea. I'm a Ravelry leech. Next weekend is a five day weekend (woohoo!!) so I'm going to at least get some of my FO's posted then. Right now I'm too lazy to even take a photo of the hat I made earlier this week and the camera and the hat are both within 2 meters of me.

I'll post a pic next time. I'll just tell you that I used a full skein of Noro Kureyon (90, I think). I had maybe 1-2 meters leftover. I knit it top down with 4mm circs increasing evenly every other round to 72 stitches then did a feather and fan pattern- 3 rows st st, 1 row pattern (10 times). I finished with five rows of 2x2 rib, mainly because the last color on the skein was my favorite (dark teal) and the one before it was NOT my favorite (dark green and crimson). So, the rib flips up and covers the Christmas tree. It only took one evening to make and looks really nice. I see myself having a goodly collection of them before too long. ;-)


I found a yarn store with free international shipping!!! Since I've decided that I should use some of the lace weight in my stash and actually knit some lace, I decided to order some Addi Turbos. Of course, since shipping was free with a $50 purchase, I had to add a few things in my cart, so I ordered some things for other people-- I think I may actually do some holiday knitting this year. My mother and sister really liked their socks, so I ordered materials to make them something else.

My order shipped last Monday, so I'll see how long free shipping takes. Hopefully, it won't be like Amazon (which is far from free for overseas orders and can take months to arrive.)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

I'm In!

I got my Ravelry invite today! So, I spent the morning tooling around have a look at everyone else's projects (instead of completing materials for my workshop on Saturday). Wow, this is going to be a time vacuum beyond You Tube proportions. ;-)

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Yes, I am still alive

Is there such a thing as an allergy to vacations? My much anticipated vacation (one whole week!) ended up being spent in bed with some flu-esque thing. Lots of headaches, some fever off and on, and a little vomiting, just for fun.

I realized that that is the third vacation in a row that I've felt like crap. At Christmas, I got some kind of bug on the plane (presumably) and spent a few rough days hanging out at my Dad's, then coughed my way through Disney World. The cough cleared up on the trip home. Literally. Before that, last Chuseok, I had to go to the emergency room, because I couldn't swallow and no other doctor's offices were open.

So, as a result of not being up to anything more than leaning up in bed, I didn't get much done. I did get the fist five Harry Potter books read, though. Now, I'm scrambling a bit to get ready for my workshop next weekend. I would link it, but it has mysteriously disappeared from the KOTESOL website. Hmmmm.... I could look into why, but I probably won't. It's about materials you can make for classroom activities with young learners.

I'm starting to get nervous. I'm not much of a public speaker, but I was requested to do it. So, today I've got to finish up my handouts and some of the materials I'll need. I won't have time this week, because our new teachers are showing up starting tomorrow. The new semester started last week, but immigration law suddenly changed so they couldn't get here on time. So, I'll be training them before and after class (which they'll be teaching).

I tried to convince the school that having subs for one extra day wouldn't hurt anything and would make happier teachers, but I don't think they listened. To their minds, not working the day they arrive is enough time to rest. So, the teachers are going to be jet-lagged and just tired from being on planes for 20-ish hours and they'll get one night of sleep before being thrown into their classes. Needless to say, they have no teaching experience. Should be interesting (read: tiring, for them and me).

I don't know why schools don't see what these little things do for teacher morale. Sending inexperienced, jet-lagged teachers straight into class is not the way to start off on the right foot. Some schools take teachers straight from the airport to class. Then they wonder why the teachers are such sticklers about following the letter of their contracts. ("Sorry, my working hours are x to y, if you want to have a meeting, it has to be then.")