So I finally get a chance to share again! First off, I have to brag. My mom did her first half-marathon yesterday! Congrats!!
As far as MY trip, I totally lucked out in the fibery/crafty department over the holidays. None of these were actually Christmas gifts*, but they followed me back West anyway.
This quilt was made by my great-grandmother many years ago. My grandma gave it to me last week, and she remembers the dresses the fabric scraps for the quilt came from. It's nice to have something of Great-Grandma's here in California, of all places, with me. It's also an extremely well-made and warm quilt! Yay me!
*Okay, so this one actually was a Christmas present...nineteen years ago.
When I was about nine or ten, my grandparents did a lot of rag rug weaving. They have several floor looms, but I was usually too small for those, so my grandfather built this 4-harness table loom for me (the apron has my name and the Christmas year on it). Between a lack of space at my parents' house and insane shipping costs to California, it's stayed at my grandparents' house, occasionally used, all these years. I'm really excited to have it back and to be playing with my new toy all over again!
I've been playing around with the cotton warp that was already on there and some plain old Red Heart yarn. I'm a bit nervous about warping the thing by myself, so I've just been figuring out different harness patterns. For some reason, though, I can't seem to do a twill pattern. The treadles won't move in that pattern, and I'm not sure why. I will have to keep working on that. I'm going to try to head down to Solvang when Village Spinning and Weaving reopens and see if they have any classes or suggestions or something.
I also came home with a bit more projects and a bit less yarn (okay, not counting the bag of yarn my grandma gave me from a friend of hers' stash):
A New Angle afghan is starting to look pretty cool, if I do say so myself. And I do! You can really start to see the optical illusion of the pattern, which has been fun. It's turned into great hockey-watching knitting, because it's just garter stitch and I don't have to look at my hands. Ironically, my actual project for my hockey KAL (the Puck This! Ravelry group's "January Hat Trick") is not good hockey-watching knitting. It was originally supposed to be a Fake Isle Hat, but my colorwork tension isn't good enough to make it look nice, so I decided to go with just a plain checkerboard pattern to practice.
I'm still trying to decide what I want to do for the Ravelympics, though. I haven't settled on anything, and part of the problem is that (as of today) I don't know exactly what my schedule is going to be. I have a guaranteed tech school seat for the one I have to do here at Vandenberg for the end of April, which will go into early June, and then straight into seasoning and full-time orders if I want them (and I do). However, I was talking to the DO today at drill, and he wants me to do the school here ASAP ("you should be doing this, like, tomorrow, Trummel!") so that I can go to a 10-week secondary school in Colorado Springs. There are only, like, three more classes for that particular school left, so this summer is really my only chance to get this training if I want it. It isn't necessary to do my job, but it makes me that much more knowledgeable (and marketable to contractors) and more valuable to the unit. So I am now going to be on a "okay, you're guaranteed to be here in April, but be ready to drop everything at any time before then, too" situation again. If I don't go before April, I'll knock out the instructors courses I need for the whole "my unit actually teaches active duty people" part of the mission, as well as get trained to be a PT leader and probably either go on temporary orders to help create curriculum for the courses we teach the active duty or there's also the possibility of going back to my old job as Recruiter's admin assistant again. He's offered it to me, but there are some details that still have to be worked out. I'm also starting ERAU classes up again next weekend (ASCI 602 this term), so that will give me something to do, too.
On top of all of that, the DO has decided that the entire unit needs to be able to at least walk a 10K by April, and we did a 5K today (I didn't time myself, but should have). It was definitely do-able, and I didn't break any records or anything, but the idea of doing double that is a bit intimidating. We're supposed to add a mile each drill until we do the 10K consistently. I think I'm going to start running on T/Th/Sa mornings, since those are the days that I usually only have one martial arts class in the evenings. Sir's been more than thrilled to have me back in classes to beat up, and I actually think the workouts in all the classes have gotten stepped up, so that's been fun. I'll probably start working on my form again this week, which is going to be harder than just stepping into the PT, though!
Alright, I think that catches about everyone up on the important things. The cross-country drive back wasn't too bad, although I was clearly not the only one who noticed the lack of warm weather:
I have never seen him do that before, but when we were on the road in rooms where he couldn't get under the bed to hide and it was below about 40 degrees in the mornings (outside, not inside, I'd never let a room get that cold if I had any choice in the matter!), he would bat my face until I lifted my arm to swat him away, then scurry down the opening in the sheets and curl up to sleep under the covers. I can't decide if he's smart or just spoiled. (He did surprisingly well on both the driving portions of the trip and staying at my parents, though. He eventually would come out even if there were other people around, but he startled easily. We were both very happy to get home!)
Going to TRY to make it to knitting up at Woodstone tomorrow. We'll see!