A new school year

At the beginning of the summer, I was sure that I’d take more opportunities to update this blog.  But alas… I was wrong.  I spent more time knitting and hanging out with Little Grump, and since Little Grump loves my MacBook so much, she ended up using it more than I did.

On the up-side, I did a whole bunch of knitting.

On the down-side, I didn’t communicate at all.

It’s not that I didn’t *want* to communicate.  I did!  I just didn’t take the time.


I do have some knitting news, but I’ll get to that later.

Now I’m back in school and very busy again.  We’ve had a bit of a rocky start of the year for reasons that I’d rather not go into.  The teamwork is there, but sometimes life just doesn’t give you the smooth path that you really should have.

Here’s an example:

Those who know me well would say that I’m a zealot when it comes to the topic of backing up data. My co-workers would tell you that I am the thorn in their sides when it comes to the topic.  I preach at length on the subject of never leaving your data on a computer that can crash and burn tomorrow. I have encouraged them to invest in a good back-up drive, and I’ve even gone to Best Buy with a friend to help her buy one.  I know that I drive folks bonkers on the subject, but I’ve never been wrong.  It’s smart to not leave all of your eggs in one basket.

I try to practice what I preach.  I have one 120 GB hard drive.  I learned my back-up lesson when that drive had issues.  So I bought a sweet 32o GB drive (that looks like a booze flask) to which I back up all kinds of data.

Starting the beginning of the year, I’d say I had the disk about 75% full.  There were thousands of files on it.  (That’s not an exaggeration!)  This was even after I backed up three years of photos to DVDs at the end of the last school year.  I had three years of photos, movies, custom artwork, award layouts, PHP scripts and more backed up to the drive.  It was my life-insurance policy against the worst.

Notice that I said “was” and “had”?


Last Friday, I reimaged my work computer using the “Deploy Studio”.   For those not familiar with the concept, Deploy Studio takes a master image and copies it to the hard drive, giving everything a fresh install of the OS and all of the programs installed on the computer.  Generally, it’s good to do it on a heavily used computer because it speeds up the computer and gets rid of stuff that isn’t really used.   It wasn’t until the computer was completely reimaged that I realized two very bad things:

  1. I had not unplugged my 320 GB drive.
  2. Deploy Studio targets the first available hard drive as a default.
  3. The computer listed the removable hard drive as the first available drive.

When I rebooted, I noticed that nothing had changed on my system.  It was like one of those comedy movies when you see the camera slowly zooming in as the Clue finally dawns on the unsuspecting buffoon.  I had a ringing in my ears as I checked the listing of files on the drive.

In less than 20 minutes, I’d completely wiped out over three years of work.  Thousands of files (very likely tens of thousands of files)… poof… gone.

I wanted to throw up.  I don’t know how I didn’t.  (Very likely, the only thing that stopped me was the fear of having a six year old student see the computer expert throw up in the middle of the lab!)

People think I’m pretty clever with computers, but most of what I know about computers I learned by totally screwing up somewhere.  In the grand scheme of “learning opportunities”, I think this is going to be a big one!

I’ve already tried one path, and I’ll share the quick, cheap, and dirty process in the next few days.  But it was far from perfect.  I want 75% of the data back, if not more.  (I’m not foolish enough to expect perfection!)

So this weekend, during the long Labor Day weekend (trust me… the irony is not lost on me!), I’m going to go about attempting to retrieve the data that I lost.  I’ll be posting updates as I go along so that if you, dear reader, are stuck in the same position, you’ll have some idea of how to get back your data (if you can).  You can say to yourself, “Self, I remember that Grace was once an absolute moron and almost lost everything.  What did she do to recover?”

Seriously, though, I hope you NEVER need the information!

Now for the knitting news…

You may remember my Earth Maiden shawl that I finished earlier in the year.  Out of everything that I’ve ever knit, it’s the one thing that I think was practically perfect. The yarn that was handspun by my friend Micki was exquisite, and my knitting didn’t do anything to take away from it.   Several people who saw it agreed that it was amazing.

Their approval made me feel braver than I’ve ever been before.  So I submitted the shawl to the State Fair of Texas for judging for the Knitted Shawls, Wraps, and Ponchos category.  After what seemed like a lifetime of waiting I finally got the results.  I am utterly surprised to find out that my Earth Maiden was awarded an Honorable Mention for the category.  That means that it will be on display at the State Fair this year!

I’m shocked!  I hoped that it would qualify, but I really didn’t think it would.  I mean, it’s the first time I ever submitted anything for judging!  I would have loved a higher rating, but I’m more than satisfied at the rating.  (I poked around Ravelry and found the 2nd place winner for the category.  Trust me when I say that, with all objectivity, that item made mine look like child’s play!  I can’t wait to see the first place entry!)

I’m very excited!  We’ve been meaning to go to the State Fair since we moved down here.  (Rumor has it, it’s the biggest and best state fair.  Of course, every Texan thinks everything about Texas is the best!)  We’ve never gone though because it has always been too hot or too wet or too inconvenient or something.  Hubby swears that we will certainly go this year.

Just in case though… If you go to the fair, take a picture for me!

2 thoughts on “A new school year

  1. Angeluna

    Congratulations!!!! Someone at knitting told me about it and I couldn’t believe you didn’t mention it when we talked. Though you had other things on your mind.

    Oh no for your back-up drive. That’s a horror story. I do NOT keep my back-up plugged in.

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