Just ‘cos I haven’t blogged for a while…

14 07 2008

Just because I haven’t blogged for a while doesn’t mean that nothing’s happening. Yes, we’re in the depths of winter, and this year is much colder than last—I checked the weather bureau’s daily stats on maxima and minima for June and July and it seems we’re about 2 degrees colder each day than last year. The heater’s been on quite a bit so far!

So, what have I been up to? In no particular order:

  • Quilting: I’ve finally finished all 144 blocks for my log cabin quilt (168 if you count the 24 blue guys that I decided not to use!). I haven’t taken photos of each of the colourways yet, and haven’t started to pull the blocks together into a quilt top, but small steps… I think getting 144 block completed in my spare time was an achievement, considering each one took about 15 minutes to do. It’s amazing how they add up when you do a couple each evening after finishing work. Oh, and while watching the football on TV.
  • Travel: I went up to Perth for the office ‘end of financial year’ lunch. Although the lunch was only a half day, I travelled up on the Sunday, spent all of Monday in the office plus Tuesday morning, then we had the lunch on the Tuesday afternoon. On the Wednesday I did a lot of running around (dentist—had to have a filling; hairdresser; old bank to collect new VISA card) before driving home. And a couple of weeks ago we went over to Busselton to have lunch with my folks, and for my husband to go see Hancock (which he enjoyed). While he was at the movies, I looked at stoves (the one in the rental property has died) and laptops, and did a bit of shopping.
  • Catching up with friends and family: While in Perth, I caught up with friends for dinner on the Sunday night, and with my nieces and nephew and their respective partners for dinner on the Monday. There was the work lunch on Tuesday, and then I had breakfast with a couple of ex-work colleagues (is that how it’s hyphenated?) on Wednesday morning so it was a bit of an eating feast! But there’s never enough time to catch up with everyone… It was fabulous seeing the nieces and nephews again! I’ve hardly seen them since we left Perth, and definitely not all together like that.
  • Computer issues: I took my PC to Perth with me to get it serviced. Nothing was wrong with it, but I was getting regular ‘overheating’ messages which I’d been told to ignore. But I didn’t like them—getting a message that the computer is running at 70C when it’s only 10C in the house is a worry! Anyhow, the PC Guru guys looked it over, did some cleaning and testing and found that my power supply was nearly gone (something about capacitors?). So they replaced that, installed SP3 for Windows XP, did some other tweaks, and I packed up my baby in the car and brought her home. SP3 gave me a few problems, which I’ve documented on my professional blog, but they seem to be sorted now. I also had issues with installing Acrobat 9 on my aging laptop. And as a result decided to get a replacement laptop! It’s been something I’ve been considering for a while, so I bit the bullet. I pick it up next Thursday when we’re in Busselton, and it will have Vista on it so I’ll get a chance to try it out, as well as install Office 2007 and try it out too. I’ve been wanting to test Office 2007 for a while, but not on my production machine while all my clients still use Office 2003. Mmmm… new toy! (I’m trying not to remember the pain of installing lots of apps…)
  • Work stuff: I was told by my boss that the division of the Brisbane company that I work for had decided that the volume of work coming in was now sufficient for them to employ a full time tech writer in the Brisbane office (which it is). No big deal—that’s the life of a contractor. So I’ve helped them find someone in Brisbane (yes, I know people in all sorts of places!) and he starts with them mid August. There’ll be some handover time, but I expect to be off that project towards the end of August. There’s other work at the company my other boss there wants me to do, but I’m not sure of the arrangements for that. I suspect that it won’t be enough for three full days, but we’ll see. Meantime, all sorts of other possible opportunities have been cropping up from people I’ve worked with before. We’ll see what comes of those…
  • Stuff related to the technical communication profession: I was asked to be on an editorial advisory panel for Intercom, the non-academic journal produced by the Society for Technical Communication (STC). We’ve had one meeting so far, which was an interesting exercise in logistics for the organiser and others in the group as I was the only one based outside the US. While I’m very familiar with issues arising from working and communicating across international time zones, most of the others weren’t, so if nothing else, they’re gaining an appreciation of the global nature of the organisation! I’ve also been asked to be a co-moderator of one of the biggest user groups for those involved in Help authoring, and have been asked to write some articles for an Australia/New Zealand technical communication publication, and for an international web magazine that focuses on user experience issues. I was also asked to be on a panel but that was in Perth and required me to be on site for just 90 minutes, so I passed along the details of a friend who I was confident could ‘fly the flag’ for technical writing.
  • Enjoying the birds: We have a great variety of birds that pass through the airspace above our backyard, occasionally stopping to sample parts of the garden. We regularly get red-capped parrots and ring-necked parrots (a.k.a. Twenty-Eights and Port Lincoln parrots) foraging on the back lawn, magpies, New Holland honeyeaters, wattle birds, willy wagtails, the occasional kookaburra, and just lately, the most gorgeous tiny Splendid Blue Wrens, with their bright blue iridescent plumage (no, I didn’t take this picture!).

Well, I think there are winds of change in the air. Nothing I can put my finger on, but as I look at this list it seems that parts of my life will be going in different directions soon. That’s not scary—just an observation.


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2 responses

14 08 2008
Closing doors, opening doors « At Random

[…] As I mentioned the other week, my time on the big project for the Queensland company is coming to an end. They’ve employed a full-time Brisbane-based replacement for me. He starts this Monday and I do handover with him next week. I’m fine with it—my other boss there still wants me on board for other work, but we’ve yet to work out the details of how much time etc. […]

26 08 2008
Shifting sands and the power of karma « At Random

[…] sands and the power of karma 26 08 2008 About 6 weeks ago I mentioned that I thought things were shifting in my world. Then 2 weeks ago some had firmed up. […]

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