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Friday, September 26, 2014

Yay for practicing!!!!

I have a job!  An official, paid, orchestra job!!!  Let the happy dance begin :)  I won my first audition on Tuesday evening and I start playing in January!!!  Sorry for all of the ! but I am really excited :)  This is all part of my plan, and it feels so good knowing that I can actually win an audition and that all of my years of practicing have paid off.  10 years ago, I was fully intending to attend college for a degree in astrophysics and ultimately pursue a PhD...now I'm 9 months away from having a Masters degree in music performance.  Crazy how life turns out :)

Because I am me, and now that I've secured one job, I'm applying for another :) Yep.  I am sending a resume for another audition later this year.  I would love to make this other orchestra as well.  It would be great to be able to have these two lined up so that I can be making some money right out of school and not have to move back in with my parents.  I know they love me and support me, but let's be honest, if I am able to live on my own I will be more proud of myself and I'm sure they will be relieved that I can take care of myself :)

In the mean time, I am hanging out with friends this evening to break up the marathon study, writing, research, and practice sessions going on.  I'll leave you with some pictures that aptly show my week!

This is my practice room.  And yes, I do consider it mine.  I haven't used any other room yet this semester :)


My glorious new Crockpot! I love it :) Blue dots.  Need I say more???

In my quest to make thank you gifts for everyone I stayed with this summer, I made this little purple mug rug for Em.  She was super sweet and I know she likes to sit and sip her coffee in the morning so I thought this could brighten up her table :)  That, and I love making mini things...it's an affliction...

I saw a peck of wild turkeys on my walk back from campus one day this week, these two were only a few feet away and there were 3 others on the opposite side of the fence.  I love wild life sightings in the middle of the city :)

This picturesque street is one I walk down most days on my way to campus.  It's beautiful and relaxing; not a bad way to start my mornings :)





That's all I've got for now, have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Trying something new :)

It has been a crazy week so far, and since I woke up and it was raining this morning I decided to do crafty things in the apartment this morning instead of schlepping to school to practice and research in the library.  Don't worry, I won't ignore my school work, I'm just going to do it later :)

In that spirit, I have thought about linking up to WIP Wednesday for ages, but it has never worked out for me to do it before now.  Either I didn't have pictures of a WIP from that week or I didn't actually work on anything that week (ah, the joys of grad school...).  

But this week I have a WIP AND pictures!!!  So here goes:

This is the "Twitter" top I have been working on.  I finished it after almost 2 years in progress on Sunday night.  The lighting is really bad during the day in my apartment, but especially so at 10:30 at night.

I saw this quilt in a McCall's magazine pattern and loved the fabric that the designer used, so, of course I ordered it online.  Fast-forward 2 years and I am trying really hard not to buy any fabric as I already have too much to be moving every 9-12 months so I decided to piece the backing with as much of the leftover fabric from the front as possible.  I've never done this before, so I spent a lovely afternoon with my roommate, former roommate, and her current roommate playing with the pieces trying to see how to best fit them together for the back.  I don't have enough, but it is really close!  I'm guessing less than a yard short :)  What you don't see in this picture is all of the leftover strips that I am sewing together into blocks that will also go somewhere on the back.
This is what my sewing corner in my apartment looks like.  The strips and blocks are everywhere on the table... I hope I can finish up the back by next week because I would really love to finish up this project!

I'm linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced for the first time!

Otherwise, life is pretty normal.  My weeks are crazy on Mondays and Tuesdays, but Wednesdays and Thursdays are pretty tame and I have Fridays off!  You know, for extra practice time and research/writing.  I am also planning my travel to visit family in October, different family for Thanksgiving, and going home for Christmas :)  

And, perhaps my biggest WIP of all, I have a set program for my gradutate violin recital next semester!!! Yes!!! I LOVE all of my pieces and I am really looking forward to working on them for the next several months.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Um, where did August go?

As I was eating my cereal this morning, I realized that it is already September. Now, I knew it was September because classes had started and I mailed a birthday package to my Dad and his birthday is in September, but it didn't hit me until this morning that it is SEPTEMBER! Holy moly... The days in August seemed to blend together in a wash of relaxation and calm. It was nice :)

Now onto real life again. Classes have started and I am really excited about taking my graduate seminar this semester. The topic is Critical Organology and we will be discussing instruments and their development, comparisons, and poking at the question "just what is an instrument". It's going to be a lot of work, but I'm really excited for it! Other than that I'm taking lessons, Masterclass, and orchestra this semester so it won't be too bad.

And, drumroll please, I have a job with the University Community Orchestra playing assistant principle viola and helping out with anything extra behind the scenes that needs to get done. I'm so glad, it will be fun to play viola in orchestra and to have a weekly rehearsal that's just for fun :) not to mention getting paid for it ;)

I was super productive in August, crafty-wise:




I finished this cross stitched hand towel and I'm going to send it to my great-Aunt and Uncle in Indiana. They were so kind to let me stay with them on my way back from Maine and I loved getting to meet more of that side of the family!





I also finished these two floor cushions for my new apartment. My roommate and I have a 2 seat couch and one stuffed chair in the living room, and the folding chairs we have at the kitchen table, while functional are not comfortable for long periods of time when we have people over. I started them one evening, they sat for a couple of days and then I finished them in another evening. Best part, I didn't buy any fabric, just the pillow forms :) I do want to add Velcro to the envelope closure on the back, just for some stability since they get moved on the floor a lot.





I tried a new technique! This is from the Bloomin' Quilt As You Go quilt panel tutorial from Let's Eat Grandpa. (http://letseatgrandpa.com/2013/01/29/bloomin-quilt-as-you-go-panel-tutorial/) I am not one for improv. It doesn't usually work out well for me, but I thought I'd give it a try, and it turned out pretty cool :)




I made this block as a test to see what it was all about and because I was thinking about using it for two other thank you gifts. I may do a smaller version for one of them, but this 11.5" by 11.5" block took 2 entire bobbins of thread and almost 2 hours just to sew... Now it is hanging on the wall of minis :) more will be added!

I have a couple of other gifts that I finished and gifted already but didn't get pictures of: a cross stitched lavender sachet and a quilted oven mitt. Plus I have finished a mini quilt depicting my friends beta fish and his castle as another gift that I have not photographed yet either.

My other bout of productivity in August was moving into the new apartment. It took a couple of weeks to get all settled in, but I have been enjoying being in my own space with my own things for a couple of weeks now and it is lovely! I wish there was more natural light here, there are half as many windows in this apartment as I had last year and unfortunately, even on bright sunny days, I need to have at least 2 lights on when I'm sewing. Oh well. I'll post more pictures of my apartment set up soon, but for now, this is my favorite part about the kitchen!




I promise the spice rack is straight and level, it's the phone jack cover that is wonky!