Monday, April 23, 2018

My Great "Dress-capade"

The company I work for held its board meeting at the local plant this past week.  Normally the it's held at the corporate headquarters across the country.  The night before the meeting, the plant held a cocktail reception at a nearby hotel's conference room.  I've moved just enough up the food chain to get invited to it.

When I told Himself about it, he suggested I find a new dress for the occasion.  I have a number of dresses in my closet, but most didn't seem the right thing to wear.  Too formal.  Too casual.  Too boring.  Hasn't fit for a while.

Unfortunately, I found out about this event just a week before it was to occur.  Not a lot of time to find something appropriate.  And, I have specific requirements for a dress.  I'm not exactly small, so it has to come in plus sizes.  I prefer sleeves.  No bold or garish patterns.  I don't want anything short.  It should come at least to my knees, preferably below.

Do you know just how hard it is to find a dress in a week that meets all that?  

Close to impossible.

I stopped at a couple of stores nearby.  Nothing.  So we went online and started looking.  I found several dresses that I liked, but they wouldn't arrive in time.  Himself found the navy dress, but when I finally went to buy it, it was backordered, to July.

So on Tuesday, the day before the reception, I went to a few stores at lunchtime.  The first one I went to had exactly two dresses in the plus size department.  They were polyester, shapeless, and looked more like beach cover-ups.  The next store I went to was worse.  The had exactly one dress, a knit dress with a palm tree print on it that looked like it should be worn to a luau.  The last stop had me shaking my head.  I suppose if I was nineteen and going to a bar, the dresses might have been okay.  But, then again, not.  They were so short I don't think I could have bent over without giving an unwanted view to anyone who happened to be looking my way!

I was getting desperate.  On the way home a made a few more stops.  One store I stopped at had quite a few dresses.  But remember my sleeves requirement?  Only one dress in my size had sleeves.  And it fit.  And it came to my knees.  So I bought it.

I made two other stops, just in case I could find something better.  The one department store seemed to have nothing but "formal" dresses - sequins and beads and taffeta.  The other department store had a few from which to choose, but again, where are the sleeves?  I did find one with sleeves and it appeared to meet the knee length requirement, but the fitted, cross over bodice  provided a view of my bust that no coworker should ever see.

When I got home and showed Himself the dress I bought, I think he had the same thought I did - why did I buy it?  It was pretty blah and shapeless.  So, after all that I decided to return the dress and wear the boring black one that I already owned.

One would think the story ends there, but no.

On Wednesday I packed a bag with my dress shoes, pantyhose (two pairs), slip and jewelry.  The dress was transported on a hanger.

After work, I locked myself in my office and started getting ready.  I start putting the hose on and noticed a run.  Well, I congratulated myself, that's why you brought two pairs.  Just in case.  As I put the second pair on, you guessed it - another, and much longer, run. No!

Thankfully, I had a little time before the event started.  I decided to run to the store for new nylons.  I finished getting dressed and slipped my shoes on bare legged.  It wasn't comfortable, but it was just for a short time.

I had to go to two stores before I found what I was looking for.  I grabbed the package and dashed into the dressing room to put them on.  And I found why my foot was hurting so badly.  I had a large, bloody blister on my heel.

I didn't know whether I wanted to laugh or cry.  I limped out of the store, drove to the hotel, and headed straight to the bar!

I haven't decided if I am giving up on wearing dresses or if I am just going to start sewing them myself.


Friday, April 13, 2018

Quick Takes (35): Work Facinates Me

- 1 -
"I like work; it fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours."
- Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome
I've heard variations of this quote, and have always liked it in a joking sort of way.  But never was it more true than on this past Tuesday when we had two very large, very dead trees removed.  Watching the team of guys work at the task at hand really was fascinating.

- 2 -
We had two trees, one Ash and one Cherry, that died a couple of years ago.  Hawks liked to perch in them while hunting their prey and we like to watch the hawks, so we put off having them cut down.  But recently too many large branches started falling off, so we knew they had to go.

The team of five guys spent the better part of an hour setting up and getting their equipment in place.  They needed to use a crane with a one hundred foot boom to get near the tops of the trees.  One of the guys was hoisted up and he attached straps around the branches.  He was then lowered some where he took a chainsaw to sever the trunk.

- 3 -
After the trunk was cut the boom operator swung the cut tree around and lowered it to the ground.  Several other guys then got to work cutting it into smaller chunks and feeding the bark and small branches into the chipper.

- 4 -
I don't think we will need firewood for a long, long time.  I am glad that I'm not the one who has to split all that!

If it wasn't for that pile of wood, you would never know that we had any work done in the yard.  The tree removal service was that good.  The pride they took in their work is obvious by the care they took in how they did it.

- 5 -
Himself counted the rings on one of the logs of the Ash tree.  It was nearly one hundred years old when it died.  I've got to wonder at all the changes that the tree "saw," how things changed in this area.

- 6 -
When the Hairy Beast wasn't supervising the work, he was assisting with debris removal.  Our "puppy" celebrates his 11th birthday today.  Happy Birthday, Jack!

- 7 -
It is perfectly obvious that in any decent occupation (such as bricklaying or writing books) there are only two ways (in any special sense) of succeeding. One is by doing very good work, the other is by cheating.”
–  All Things Considered by GK Chesterton

Don't forget to check out more Quick Takes at This Ain't The Lyceum.

Have a great weekend!


Thursday, April 12, 2018

Throwback Thursday

On Tuesday I worked from home.  We were having some work done in the yard and I wanted to be around to ask and answer questions.  I also wanted to keep an eye on what was going on.  In the afternoon, I had to attend a staff meeting that we held via video conference.

Partway through the meeting I heard some shouting outside, so I got up to see what the fuss was all about.  It turned out to be nothing.  Later in the meeting I had to give my report.  The guys started laughing. 

Nice picture, Donna!


The one on the door.

Ugh.  I forgot that it was there.  They saw it when I peaked out the window.

When I was in high school, I think my junior year, my sister and I decided to surprise our parents with a formal portrait of ourselves.  We had snagged a coupon from May Company department store for a free 8x10.

Nineteen eighties big hair and not much fashion sense, we snuck out of the house and got our pictures taken.  Even if Sis' plaid blouse didn't exactly go with my floral one, our parents loved the photos.  They liked them so much they got a really BIG print of their favorite.

A number of years back, my dad was cleaning out a cabinet and found the photo.  Sis didn't want it but Himself did.  The only place I would let him hang it was on the back of the upstairs office where no one could see it.

Or so I thought.


Saturday, April 7, 2018

Knock, knock! Who's there?

Yesterday morning Himself heard what sounded like pounding outside.  He guessed that maybe one of our neighbors was getting a new roof or some other construction.  Later on, though, it sounded much closer.

He finally found the source.  This robin has spent hours sitting on a branch of the rhododendron knocking on the dining room window.

We have tried scaring her away and putting pictures on the window to hide the reflection of the bush, but she persists.  I think she wants in where it is warm.

My guess is that she isn't too happy that there is still snow in April.  Where are all the worms?