Monday, December 15th, 2003
12:09 pm - Christmas Time is Here  
I had a bit of a holiday meltdown last night. It was sort of inevitable. This year, for the first time in a long time, I'm actually been sort of enthusiastic about Christmas. That enthusiasm led me to committing myself to projects, which of course need to be completed in a timely fashion. Given both my procrastinatory tendencies and the fact that I really don't have much of a sense of time passing, it's a recipe for disaster, really, and the stress caught up with me last night.

Project the first was designing a Christmas card, which I've done for the last few years. This year I played around with a couple of ideas, but when I tried to translate those ideas to actual designs, I wasn't at all satisfied with the results. Saturday I went rooting around in my old photo files looking for something I could adapt, and found some photos I'd taken up at the farm on a snowy day a few years ago (one of which I'd already used to make the first card in the series). A little Photoshop manipulation, a haiku, and a quote adapted from one I'd snagged off the interbunny, and the card was ready to be printed. (The quote was listed as "author unknown," so I feel no guilt whatsoever adapting it. Who knows, I might have been the original author anyway.) I printed off about fifty of them on the color laser at work yesterday, so apart from mailing them all, that project is done, and on time. Go me!

Project the second is currently a disaster. Without going into details, I was painting something, and the paint (primer actually) chemically reacted with the surface. Multiple attempts to repair the damage only made it worse. That's never happened before on similar projects I've done, so not entirely my fault, at least not until I pulled out the Dremel tool to try and remove the crapped up paint. That turned out to be *so* not the best idea I've ever had. Not sure what to do next. I can try to start over, but there may not be time, and I'm not sure if I can find the proper raw materials again (there was a certain element of luck involved the first time). Feh.

Projects three and four were woodworking projects I had started for my nephews when they were three (like, six years ago) and never completed. Now I have a niece and a nephew in the same age range, so I figured I could finish them. Nope. No chance. I bought them presents instead. There are still a few more little woodworking projects to be finished this week (says the guy who is fast approaching the first anniversary of starting the still not quite completed bookcases), so that will be stressful enough.

Finally, I've been burning CDs, including a special Christmas one I do for kids, and I went to print labels for them last night, and the labels kept coming out dark and dingey looking. Fooled around with settings, ran the maintenance procedure on the printer, but to no avail. Finally I took a look at the inks. My Canon has separate cartridges for each ink, and upon examination, I discovered that the yellow ink cartridge had somehow become contaminated with black ink, making it look that really awful color you used to get in grammar school when you got a black crayon too close to the yellow. Let's not mention that I'd only installed the yellow cartridge at the end of August. How the hell has it gotten contaminated. Blue and red were fine. It was the last straw, and I really lost my temper at that point, cursing as loud as I could (not that anyone could hear me), throwing papers around, a full-on tantrum.

Finally calmed down enough to get a couple of prezzies ready for mailing, which I managed to do without further misadventure, and then I spent the rest of the evening sitting in front of the computer, signing and addressing cards, and letting Perkins and Minim talk me down from the ledge I was standing on.

It'll be all right. I think...
Current Mood: frazzled
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msbellemsbelle on December 15th, 2003 - 09:27 am
ACK! poor you. why do we do this to ourselves? we all need to chill. I hereby release you of all non-familial deadlines for gifts and cards (there are limits to my powers and family is one of them). The deadlines are self-imposed anyway, teh recipients are always gonna love getting a gift, always.
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Jesse: piglet heartjesseh on December 15th, 2003 - 09:38 am
What she said. What's more frustrating that trying to do all this Great Stuff and having everything possible go wrong? Nothing. Ugh.
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DXMachinadxmachina on December 15th, 2003 - 10:54 am
Fortunately the family is mostly done, and what isn't is totally under control. That's actually way ahead of my usual schedule, so that's good.
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Hugh Likes Carrots: 50s metheodosia on December 15th, 2003 - 10:15 am
There seems to be a lot of Xmas overload around on the board and LJ today. Sorry to hear about the projects gone awry, but I'm sure that the Secret Sant-ee will be able to wait.

Me, I'm so far behind on my Bitch Blanket, that I'm actually going to send a premade one for an interim blanket in the meantime....
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DXMachinadxmachina on December 15th, 2003 - 11:01 am
Well, I started the nephew presents six *years* ago, so you're not doing all that bad.

It bothers me to make the Seekrit Santee wait. It's a thing. I was royally pissed last year when I mailed Trudy's present on the sixteenth, priority mail (TO NEW JERSEY!), and it didn't get there until the 23rd, after she'd left for Nova Scotia. I'm already planning on using Fed Ex this year.
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mearamearagrrl on December 15th, 2003 - 11:07 am
Heh. Well, the ONLY present I've bought/made so far is my Seekrit Santa one--because I was going to be out here, and figured I'd better just hand it to her. I'm very glad I did not have to mail anything.
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