February 14th, 2017

Lanesboro, sink, oven-fire

Going to MN to attend the wedding of two lesbians from Taiwan was indeed good for the soul, and much appreciated in these dark times.
The wedding was tiny - just my brother and his wife and the happy couple, and two of us as witnesses.  Then chocolate cake.

We stayed at the Stone Mill B&B in Lanesboro - very pleasant.  We did a lot of walking around town - brother's condo is at the top of a steep hill; the walking felt wonderful after so much sitting at a desk lately.  Beautiful scenery in Lanesboro, and a small fabric shop, and art shops.

At one stop, I found what is apparently the sink I've been waiting for, from Joel Sampson.  A pottery sink, based on a lotus leaf.  The next inside-house project is a complete gut-and-remodel of the guest bath.  I basically knew what I wanted to do, and had intended to use an ok sink from Menards...but this is way cooler and not much more expensive.  And it's crystallized some design details for me.  I'm still comfortable with doing all the work myself - will be the largest project I've taken on, but I'm barely moving the plumbing, probably not moving any electrical, and not cutting into anything structural.  I'm looking forward to the project.

The drive back was pleasant and scenic.  Dinner with Z - vegetable fajitas.

Then, back to the salt mines.  As of Friday, I'd already logged 68 hours of overtime for the year (even with taking 2 days of vacation).  Somewhere in there I managed to fit in a gripe session with boss...which didn't help much.  I think things will taper off a bit, for me at least...not necessarily for the rest of the team.  But they could easily flare up again, due to all the neglected things that, even with overtime, haven't been addressed and are going to need attention soon.  It is so very inefficient to have multiple people going to so many meetings...I attended 20 meetings last week - which really puts a damper on getting any actual work done (especially when I can't rid myself of the "hold music" earworm).  The mental whiplash of trying to switch back and forth between completely disjoint projects/topics isn't helping either.

Somewhere in there, I finally joined twitter.  More as a consumer than a producer, currently:  to follow some news, and news-related people.

And I got in a little yardwork time over the weekend.  Clearing brush from the site of one spring project - partly in the hope of reducing the tick population in that area.

The first round of "soil sprouts" turned out well - just as idiot-proof as advertised.  I will grow more; a dead-easy source of truly fresh greens in Wisconsin in the winter is much appreciated.

While baking brownies last week, I heard a noise from the kitchen - like a junebug caught in a window, if the junebug were six feet tall.  I turned around, to see the inside of my oven glowing like the gates of hell.  I had simultaneous thoughts of "shit! my house!  where are the cats?!" and "COOL!!".  I turned off the oven.  Then, feeling less trusting of it than I had, I unplugged it.  Pretty sure the heating element shorted out and all I need to do is replace it.  But that thing is old and filthy and has never run true to temp (and the fault isn't linear, so baking gets very tricky).  This seems like a good excuse to get a new one.  Maybe also a shiny new fridge, we'll see.

(The brownies survived the fire.  Cherry-pecan.)