A Day of Frustrations, a Weekend of Fun

Frustration #1
I failed the Minnesota Written Driving Test

I can retake it tomorrow. Tomorrow is another day – and I’ll sleep with the exam booklet.

When I told Gerry I failed we had this little exchange:
G – I’ve
never failed a test.
A – Shut up.

G – Not a written driving test, at least.

A – Shut UP!

G – No, now that I think of it, I haven’t even failed the
driving portion of any test.
A –
Oh – just shut up.

Always useful, the yelling. Actually, we were both amused, it was a funny exchange. A nice release.

Frustration #2
Chasing down money for teaching is so annoying.

Fighting with a venue over expenses they owe me (in addition to teaching fees reaching back over 3 months) is aggravating.

Almost more frustrating is trying to convince a venue that if they want to hire me to teach from 9-5 one day, AND from 2-5 the next day, they MUST pay for 2 nights accommodation (they only want to pay for one – am I supposed to sleep in my car the night before my first night of teaching?)

THIS is when I feel the stress. So much of the stuff I do around the house – the painting, the putting up shelves, laundry, dishes, driving folks around, shopping – all of that stuff is a kind of stress release.

Work is hard, but it’s work. There’s a certain relief in knowing what I have to do, and doing it. Dealing with folks who turn themselves inside out to find arguments not to pay me, I’m on shaky ground there, and it upsets me more than it should.

This is by far the EXCEPTION to the rule – 99% of the time venues are SO great, they treat me wonderfully, I do well for them and teach great classes and we’re all happy.

It’s so frustrating when I knock my brains out for a venue, teach a lot of classes, have a lot of happy students, but the venue refuses to pay legitimate expenses and is 3 months late with teaching fees (I was told today, “Our accountant is out, the check has just been printed.” Not even in the mail yet.)

I can’t go into the details, but I won’t be working with this organization again – this kind of grief I can live without.

Standing up for ourselves as knit teachers and designers is not easy – caving would be MUCH simpler. But I don’t want to sow those seeds. I’m in this for the long haul, and this is how I earn my mortgage.

Frustration #3
Wire that I’ve ordered for a class this weekend is late in arriving – this frustration is MY fault – so I looked up where to find Artistic Wire in the area. However, when I drove to the art shop it was closed. That was also something I also could have remedied by calling ahead. Clear thinking isn’t my strong suit today.

However, around the corner was a Michaels so I did get some wire (not the kind I’d like, but it will do) and was able to run a few errands while spending some time with Hannah, who had a half day today. A frustration turned into a good thing.

Making all of this up was a nice, long chat with Laurie this morning – I love her. She’s an amazing writer and soon she’ll be so famous she won’t even admit that she knows me. (Ha – who will be the stalker then, Ms. Laurie??)

I’m dying to read her book – I’m told I’m mentioned in it (heavens I hope it’s not the drunken stupor incident – oops, now it’s public record!) I really wish I would be in NY when she’s going to be there in June – instead I’ll be at…

All of my classes sold out quickly, which makes me feel so good. I love to teach – I hate the messy money part – and I’m SO excited about TNNA. I’m also really looking forward to Midwest Masters this weekend, teaching in Wisconsin has been such a blast, and this proves to be just as much fun.

The Twin Cities are nothing if not bike friendly! I used to ride a Motobecane all over New Brunswick when I was in grad school, and I was never in better shape. I even briefly wore a size 10 (for about 30 minutes) and I LOVED flying around on my white bike. But, alas, it was stolen and I was bereft.

Yesterday I looked up bikes on Craigs’ List and found 2 – a Peugeot for Hannah,and a Motobecane
for me. It’s very similar to my last one, a little nicer (and a cool blue color!) and Gerry’s amused himself for a good part of the afternoon checking out both bikes and discovering what has to be fixed on both of them. It’s good brain and hand work, it takes some muscle, but it’s not lifting anything heavy – perfect!

A dear, dear friend who lives nearby offered us the loan of a walker, which we’ll take up. It’s the groovy kind with a seat, so ostensibly Gerry could sit in the walker for nice long trips to the park or museum while the kids help him along. If he wants to walk, then one of the kids could ride along if he feels self-conscious just pushing himself. It’s easy to pooh-pooh the pride angle, how awful it feels to be mistaken for someone older and feeble, but keeping a good mental picture of ourselves is vital to recover, I think. This walker straddles the line between really necessary, and sort of groovy (it’s metallic green) Vroom!

I’ve mentioned that we need to add an addition to our kitchen. Our plan is to get the wall demolished, get the space roughed in (with toilet and shower and laundry hookups) and then do the finishing on our own time.

We need a toilet, and we need it sooner rather than later. Eventually the kitchen will happen. Here is a rough draft of my dream of the layout of the new area. Tiny bathroom, and laundry off the kitchen – hooah!

Now we have to coordinate with our contractor and get going. He’s getting busy – I hope we don’t have to find another. I really like him.

If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!