Joe Abbott's Weblog

Letters home to mom

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    • Coda
      Posting these cat-cartoons-without-the-cartoon was a long journey that I don’t know if I’ll repeat soon again. A daily blog is tough … even when you have your material handed to you! But, I couldn’t have done it without the artwork … Continue reading →
    • December 31, 2011
      Father Time is riding out his last few minutes of being the temporal keeper for 2011; he sits in an easy chair with a calendar showing “Dec 31” behind him and a grandfather clock pointing to the time of 11:53. … Continue reading →
    • December 30, 2011
      A happy young lady shares a table at a tony restaurant with her cat; they both wear festive, cone-shaped party hats. The woman gaily says to the tuxedoed server, “One martini and one glass of milk.” The cat does not … Continue reading →

Posts Tagged ‘vacation time’

A little time off

Posted by joeabbott on April 21, 2018

WP_20140627_001For a guy who doesn’t mind working one bit, I do have to say the relentlessness of routine sometimes assails me and it really feels good to have a little unstructured time. This is one of those times.

I think it’s in large part due to things that have come before, what’s in front of me, and just my busy life. You see, since breaking my elbow in December (yes … I’m still going on about that), I have some abandoned projects I’d intended to tackle; that weighs on a guy. Also, with my new found resurgence for hiking and climbing, I’m out every weekend … which leads to time away, not doing other stuff, and a garage full of drying gear most days of the week. And, there won’t be an end until later in June.

Mondays are a nice break, but Tuesday I’m up at 5:15AM and have about 15 minutes after getting home that evening to grab dinner before I head to the gym for classes … and then get back at 8PM, giving me a couple hours to do what I want, clean up for bed, and then do it again. Wednesdays I’ve been trying to hike up a local peak after work and have been fortunate this goes pretty quickly … and hour up and an hour down, getting me home around 7PM. Not bad. Thursday is a mirror of Tuesday.

This means I get Friday evening to prep gear for my weekend outing and I run run run.

So, for a guy who really does like the company he works for, likes the work he does, and likes staying busy, I’m looking forward to this coming week off. What do I have planned?

Well, Suzy and I will see a couple movies, we don’t do that enough. I’ll try to get in a small woodworking project … I’ve been using a cart Suzy bought for her Master Gardener clinics (the MG season hasn’t opened just yet) to dry and arrange my gear on so I need a replacement station. I’ll blog some more and have a number of things to organize and tidy up. Of course there’ll be a couple of days of general labor around the yard, but for a desk jockey, that seems like it’ll be fun.

In short, a little this and a little that. Of course I’ll more regularly visit my blogging duties. Sounds perfect.

Here’s hoping your coming week has a little bit of perfect in it, too. Thanks for dropping by.

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Time for a holiday

Posted by joeabbott on December 16, 2016

Every year I get a buncha vacation time … I accrue about 8 hours every paycheck so I could take a day off every couple weeks! While that sounds nice, if I save it, I can get five weeks of time off in a year! Now that sounds really nice!

Over the years I’ve fallen into a routine of taking a week off early in the season for projects around the house, a week off during Week of Suz, a  week off at Week of Joe, and that leaves two weeks … I spend one in day-here, day-there fashion, mostly long weekend accommodating my hiking; and then that leaves a week for an end of year holiday. Well, routine is almost never routine.

There was that year when I took no vacation at all during the year and got off from Thanksgiving to the New Year, there are years I don’t take a week off during WoS\WoJ, and some years we don’t have spring projects to address. So while I characterize my pattern as routine, it’s hardly the norm.

And so here we are this year and I have nine days of vacation I must “use or lose” … and then there are three company holidays recognized between Christmas and New Years; meaning I’m finding myself in the wonderful situation of having just worked my last day in 2016 yesterday. Can you sense that I’m smiling?

I’m not sure what the day to day will hold but I have a few pins in the calendar: Christmas Eve with my wife’s family here at our home, Christmas with just Suzy, and New Years Eve I hear plans are stirring. There’s a couple days I’ll be volunteering at a goat rescue and I’d like to get out on a hike sometime here … I’m terribly out of shape but what better way to wake a body up than plunge into mountain snow, letting frigid, dry air rake the lungs, and having your sweat flash-freeze to your body? It sounds miserable but you’ve never felt more alive and the glow from exertion and the beauty of high alpine meadows in a blanket of snow will stick with you for days.

So, there’s a lot of stuff I’ll be doing, only the loosest of schedules on which I’ll do it, and time with you and my new computer to share these stories. Thanks for dropping by; I hope to be a more regular companion here the next few weeks.

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I hear the fat lady singing

Posted by joeabbott on November 30, 2014

Well, it’s nearly over: my vacation of a week off is just about done and I’m looking back at my time off. It’s been a nice vacation that has had its ups and downs, but rounded out as very enjoyable. Let me put into perspective what it is that I did.

WP_20141127_002First, what I didn’t do. I didn’t do a lot of work-work. Usually when you’re off just a few days, you keep an eye on work email and help move items along that only you have context on. It’s not required but it is a quiet norm and one that I follow. What made this past week off nice is that I’d covered my bases on work-hand-off, and with everyone out for the Thanksgiving days off, it meant there was little to no email traffic for the last half of the week. Nice to be able to completely forget about work!

My various prior posts cover a good number of the days: time doodling about with Suzy, getting the house ready for the holiday (decoration-wise), there were the two service calls (one resulting in a couple of industrial dehumidifiers … that are still running … in our home) and the other from Comcast, and then there was the snow and cold.

WP_20141127_003The snow and cold have kept us from setting up our outside deer. This is less to do with the snow and more to do with the cold, as it’s just darned unpleasant to work in those temps. The cold has also conspired to keep me out of the garage and away from my workbench!

In the case of shop-time, it’s less about the cold than it is the other projects going on. I’ve long since learned that I’m not good “sharing space”, and I always end up stumbling over the pile we intend on getting to the Goodwill store, I’ll knock over the bulb and fuse box I have nearby, or the old stereo cabinet will be right where I need to walk … all while spinning blades and lots of sharp items are at hand. It’s a bad combination that I chose to avoid this week. There always seemed to be the hope of finishing up those other things later and having time to get on projects “later”, but it wasn’t to be this week.

I played some video games, or one game in particular, and I plan on a more elaborate write-up on that later. It was fun and diverting but a few of the defects in the game have got my attention and I’m now fixated on the problems. I know I have a “just quit when it’s no longer fun” motto these days, but it’s still enjoyable as I play through a second time as a different character type.

One item I hadn’t previously reported on is the new chair that we got! We purchased a recliner for me a couple months back, but they were putting custom upholstery on it and it got caught-up in some port work slow down or other. Anyhow, it’s here now and perfect for enjoying a seat in the front room in preparation for reading or gaming or whatever! A couple things make it a little less perfect right now: we have the industrial dehumidifiers roaring away right next to it, and we still don’t have the couch we got along with it.

The couch not being there means Suzy doesn’t have a place to land when I’m sitting in my new chair; it also means that we don’t have the final layout. So, before I start fiddling with the perfect light and the right table nearby, I’m waiting for that couch to help me “build my nest”. The new couch should be here the first week in December … let’s hope the port work slow downs don’t delay it too long!

IMG_2578Oh, and the reason for the replacement? It was twofold … while we loved the old couch it really wasn’t comfortable for two people to sit on to watch a movie and it needed to be reupholstered. A single person lounging on the couch was more than fine; it was great! And if you had to share with three or four others, you could all line up and have a decent perch. But two people relaxing on it? Just didn’t happen comfortably. And we did try to get it reupholstered … there’s a growing rip on the top of the “cushion” … but it was outlandishly expensive. As in three-times-the-price-we-paid-for-it expensive! So, sad as it was, we bid this one farewell.

imageAnd the last thing that I did was get in a bit of blogging! It has been a long time since I enjoyed telling daily stories, so it was nice to get into that routine and I won’t give it up that easily! I have the post on the video game I’m playing, a post on our holiday decorations, and I still have a day or two of vacations that should be fertile field for additional stories! It may be a little while before I get them all done, but they’ll be coming!

Today I plan on seeing if I can’t get a few deer out, we have a family friend in town and we’ll spend time with her, and I need to get to bed early for so I can start December out crisply at work tomorrow! Hurts to say it, but there it is.

Thanks for continuing to drop by and we’ll be in touch!

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