Monday, September 29, 2014

Another Odds and Ends Sort of Post

*squee*!!!  The Chinese fabric arrived today!!!!!!!!  Bean and I are beside ourselves!  Me because it's not only gorgeous, but because now I can finish Elsa!  Bean because now I can finish Elsa. ;o) 

Saturday, Dani and the twins arrived for the day so I could have a Thirty-One party.  Dani started selling it and I love the products and was more than happy to have a party for her.  As an added bonus, I got to play with the twins--they're growing up WAY too fast.  Man...

Since I served racheritas with the party, Dani decided to go ahead and stay the night which was fine with me.  That meant if the kiddos slept (and they did!) we could chat and visit and stay up way past our bedtimes.  ;o) 

We went into the offudio so I could pressure her into helping me with my SU! business--tit for tat, right? ;oP Seriously, though, I thought she might enjoy herself and she made that lovely little card up there.  It's a simple one-layer card, which anyone who makes cards knows is anything but simple. 

Yesterday we had church and I had my first Religious Ed class of the year.  I missed last week and I felt really badly about it.  My darling friend, Angie, subbed for me and I know she did a marvelous job.  She's such a doll and has worked with kids FOREVER. 

So, I met my babies, and they're an absolutely darling bunch.  I have nine darlings and they are as sweet and earnest as can be.  I couldn't detect a single joker in the bunch, which really is quite odd. 

Lil had a birthday party to attend and then we took time to just be together as a family. It was lovely, really. 

Oh, wait.  Brien and I watched and celebrated as Jordan Zimmerman had his first no-hitter and the Nats had their first no-hitter in franchise history.  That was fun times.  Who knew I'd ever get sucked back into baseball??

In randomness, I really paid attention to this tree for the first time yesterday. 

 Um...yeah...  It has managed to spiral its way up the fence.  Now what? 

A few flowers are lingering, as fall is rather slow coming to these parts. 

 I'm definitely planting black-eyed Susan vine again next year.  It's beautiful and hardy and honesty compels me to admit I have a thing for vine-ing plants.  :oP

Slow coming though it is, autumn is coming!  Hannah's tree is starting to show off a little bit. 

As is this maple in CW.  I was worried autumn might be its typical brownish drab self, but it seems we might have yet another stunning sight this year.  I'm so hopeful! :o)

Beanie attends Children's Liturgy of the Word with about ten million other kiddos--our church is really growing!--so they've started putting name tags on them to help the catechists.  Nana suggested we take a picture to show GG since she and Ellie are rather like John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt

Bean?  She was just chuffed to get a name tag and have her photo taken. ;o)

Speaking of Bean, here she is thirty minutes before we had to leave for school this morning.  Methinks somebody might like school just a little bit.  ;o) 

And, finally, more George.  He's suddenly become quite the lap kitty.  Poor Bitty, he's almost as big as she is. 

I call this one, "George: A Study in Arches and Curves".

Silly kitty. 

My family last night.  B has been burning the candle at both ends lately, dealing with working late (coming home past 8:00 last week) and trying to get his homework finished when the prof wants him to.  As such, he was up past midnight Wednesday and Thursday nights and up past two Friday night.  No wonder he's so tired. :o(

If anyone wants to know what to get me for my birthday, here ya go.  They're SOOOOO cute and go with Felix and Eugene and Francis.  :oP  Get them now because they sold out fast last year.  ;o)

Oh, and speaking of sold out, there is nary an Elsa costume in sight at the 'Jay now.  It's not even October yet!! Tami asked me why all the little girls wanted to be Elsa, why not Anna.  She said it was because Elsa was sexy.  I say it's not that, it's just, have you seen Elsa's dress?  Who would want the more fusty Anna dress when you can have Elsa's dress with the snowflakes and sparkly and shimmer and shine?  Duh!

I hope GG and I will be able to work on the dress this week and get it finished.  :o) 

Friday, September 26, 2014

A Clean and Clutter-free Offudio

I told you I couldn't leave you with that scary image of the offudio. 

 As a refresher, here's what we were dealing with before. 

Whew!  What a difference cleaning out and reorganizing makes!

 I moved out the baby books and photo albums (and found Hannah's scrapbook which in turn reminded me why I'll NEVER scrapbook like that ever again), and made room up top for that basket.  Not only is it attractive, it catches all the little pieces and bits of clutter that needed a home but I didn't want to see, such as flashlights, batteries and LED tealights. 

The stamp pad caddy now lives here, still well within my reach, but no longer taking up real estate on the desk. 

Another basket put to use.  The tubs underneath hold scraps and bits and pieces of colored card stock.  The basket holds my cutters, tape gun, white scraps and white papers for stamping.

I cleaned out the cubbies on the expedit.  I made a huge pile of unused Creative Memories albums that I kept holding on to "just in case".  Well, just in case just isn't going to happen.  I can't do it.  I simply can't  Monkey was my cropping buddy and I have too many memories associated with her and that and sure, there are a lot of things I can do, but I simply don't have the heart for it.

A clean workspace.  Hallelujah! 

Today I've been busting my chops deep cleaning the carpets.  You can really see the high traffic areas here. 

I got a deep cleaner from the local Ace hardware and I've been working practically non-stop.  I'm pooped but still have the upstairs to do.  It's only a 24 hour rental, so I'd best get hopping.

And, after.  Much better.  Do you have any idea how much carpet I have in my house?!?!?  ARGH!!

Only the bridge and three bedrooms to go...


Thursday, September 25, 2014


I'm still thinking being a grown-up is not all it's cracked up to be, but I'm willing to move on.  No, I didn't get enough sleep last night.  Yes, I did have messes and more messes to clean up.  But, somebody has to be the grown-up, and as the girls don't seem the least bit interested in doing it, I suppose I'd better step up to the plate. ;o)

Today Bean and I headed to GG's to work on her Elsa dress and to cut fabric for the quilt.  Have I shown you what I'm biting off?  Here, take a look.  Isn't it swoon-worthy?

I didn't get as much cut as I wanted, but I'm so afraid of messing up or making a mistake, I'm taking it nice and slowly--that whole "measure twice cut once" adage is firmly in my head.  I know with quilting you need to be very accurate, and I really really don't want to mess up. :oS

As for the costume, well, the bodice and skirt are now attached.  Yay!  It looks like a dress, all we need now is for the Chinese fabric to come in. ;oP  I only had to pick out a small section of stitches and resew.  And then, I managed to catch the hem in the restitching.  Doh!! :oP 

I've had this little project in my mind ever since I painted the island two years ago.  I finally tackled it today.  My neighbor, Jenny, has the same model home we do, and is painting her cabinets.  Good golly Miss Molly that's a lot of cabinets to paint!!  Don't think I haven't thought of it more times than I can count.  But, watching all she's going through, I'm more than happy to just hang back and stick with the island for the time being. 

That wallpaper was a piece of cake!  I swear, the next time we decide we want bead board in a room, I'm going to lobby for using this stuff! 

I'll bring out the paint tomorrow and finish it off and touch-up the island and windowsill as well.  

(Ya'll know I believe in keeping it real.  Yes, this is really what the piles and floor and whatnot look like right now.  Except for maybe the boots--I think Bean put those away...)

Now, I just need to figure out window treatments.  We've been two years without and it's time to do something about it.  I think window treatments really do finish off a room, and now that I can actually sew, why not see what I can come up with. :o)

I'm not sure these guys need anything.  Maybe a valance...Hm.  It bears thinking about. 

You know, I really do love my kitchen.  :o)  Now to get B going on replating those knobs...

I think I better get some sort of window treatment up in here as well! :oS
And, finally, more on keeping it real.  The offudio is an absolute wreck.  There is absolutely no way to do any sort of work when it's so cluttered and messy.  I'm too distracted and off my game.  UGH! 

I was in the middle of tackling it when Bean and I left for the bus stop.  Once I'm finished here, I'm back at it.  I truly believe I need more storage, I just have no clue where I could put it.  :oS  For now, I'll work with what I have and move on from there.  In an effort to keep myself from being too embarrassed, I'll post the "after" tomorrow. :o) 


I was folding laundry; he was feeling guilty about knocking the cup of chocolate milk off the table (at least that's what I tell myself); he came to snuggle.  I'm so glad he's feeling better. :o)

2.  Decluttering the offudio so I can work in there again!

3.  The island looks marvelous!  I can't wait to slap paint on it tomorrow! :o)

4.  Another cool, autumn-y sort of day.  Ahhhhh...

5.  Getting Elsa taken care of, and starting to cut quilt pieces.  I know that quilt is going to take a long time to do, but I'm so excited about it!  I just wanted to stay and cut pieces until I was done and start piecing it together!  :o)

No milestones. 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

On Being the Grown-up

Gratuitous Selfie--in my defense, it was the first time in weeks I'd done full make-up and hair.
Sometimes it's really wonderful being the grown-up.  You get to go to fun events like Opening Night with the VSO and see Emanuel Ax perform two pieces.  Incredible.  It was absolutely incredible--the entire evening.  It was an escape from the dailiness of my life and I sat and people watched.  I observed the majority of the folks present were of the grey-haired set and it occurred to me they are the ones with the time and money to do such things, that for folks like us, it's a departure from the reality of life with two little kids. 

Being a grown-up is fun when you can snarf a pint of Ben & Jerry's after the children are in bed asleep, and being able to stay up late and do whatever the heck you want just because you can. 

But, then again, those things come with consequences such as added weight you gripe about and much tiredness the next couple of days as you attempt to recover from the sleep deficit you have brought upon yourself. 

There are days when I'm fairly certain being the "grown-up" is not all it's cracked up to be and I sincerely wish there were someone else to do the job. 

Being the grown-up means dealing with the flat tire on the van when you're late heading out the door, and trying to remain chill and calm and asking yourself, "What's the worst thing that would happen if the girls were late to school?"

Being the grown-up means lunging for the escaping dog and winding up splatted on the driveway in a pile of confused and frightened dog, spilled water, banged up bag and book and bleeding human.  Ugh.

Being the grown-up means paying the bills and dealing with the cable company when your bill suddenly increases thirty dollars with no explanation, always being in charge of the cooking and cleaning and making sure the laundry is done so that nobody has to go naked. 

It means putting off all those fun and exciting things you want to do, such as sewing an Elsa costume or playing with fabric and a sewing machine and instead doing the chores and cleaning that must be done so that you don't lose your mind. 

I did manage to steal a bit of time for playtime with GG last week.  Isn't this fabulous? 

Who knew sewing a costume could be so easy?  Seriously.  I had NO idea!

But, then it's back to being the grown-up once more.  That means dealing with trying to figure out what new medical insurance plan you are going to get because the one you currently have (and have had for 11 years) is not going to be available to you come January.  It means contacting financial institutions about refinancing your mortgage.  It means moving so far outside your comfort zone you don't know if you'll ever get back to it.  It means, even when you're dead tired from staying up WAY too late (and you knew it was a bad idea but couldn't stop from finishing those last fifty pages...), you still get up with your small child who comes into your room and declares they need 'nuggles. 

It means getting out of bed in the morning to get wee ones off to school with breakfast and love and kindness when all you want to do is sit with your mug of coffee and attempt to find some semblance of a human form within your crabby body.  It means taking care of the messes the cat makes when he knocks that cup of milk off the table. 

I have no idea who thought being a grown-up was a good idea.  I would love to meet them and kick them in the keister.  Gr.  Being a grown-up is hard and scary and is completely made up as you go along, and NOBODY tells you this when you're a kid.  As a child I had absolutely NO idea that all the grown-ups in my life were frauds!  They should tell you these things, gosh darnit! If they did, maybe we all wouldn't be in such a hurry to get here. 

I swear I don't feel any more "grown-up" than I did at 18.  Or 16 for that matter.  I'm still that same uncertain, unsure girl, just trying to figure it all out as I go along. 

I hope the girls don't find out...



When Grandma and I were sewing the other day she lamented she no longer had a pincushion.  I had pinned a tutorial back in January that I had determined was going to be my next project when I got my sewing machine back out because I needed a pincushion.

I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out.  So cute!

And, to the folks who take the time to put tutorials together, thank you SO much! :o)

Driving home last Friday, I happened to look out the window and see a mama and two babies.  Can you see the baby there next to her?

Bean told me she wanted to go on the nature trail yesterday instead of CW, so off we went.  I took two months off running this summer because it was so blasted hot, humid and otherwise nasty.  Getting back into shape has really been the pits, but it's easier than getting into shape for the first time, if that makes sense.  :oS  Dani and I are running the Race for the Cure 5K October 11 so I've gotta get back on that horse.  I don't think I'm too far off, actually.  :o)

I got out the fall and Halloween decor last Saturday because I'm hosting a Thirty-One party this Saturday.  I like to be ready, what can I say? Anyhow, yesterday I looked up to find I had TWO Halloween kitties.  :oP

Remember when I had the buggy sleep with my Up App?  Check out the "Stay Happy Today" advice.  Ha!!! :oD 

6.  It's raining today.  A lovely, gloomy sort of day and I'm wallowing in it with my Ray LaMontange Pandora station.  It's been nice and mellow and bluesy as I've been doing my chores. 

7.  I'm once more all caught up on the laundry.  Whew.  Stupid, spooty're never done.  Ever.  Maybe I can convince my family we all need to have a nudist day...;oP

No milestones. 
Still working through the "thirteen" thing.  Everyone agrees it makes sense this would be the birthday to knock me flat on my hiney again.