Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Wet and wild

Though our day finished in a wet and wild fashion, The Viking and I did manage to have our playtime in the sandbox during the cooler hours of the morning.

Playtime included a longish session of furniture rearranging.  Especially difficult if you insist on pushing chairs and tables across a knobby rug.  :-)

Then there was the conundrum presented by the table that kept folding unexpectedly.

He tried to move the big chairs too but I kept my feet comfortably planted where I wanted them.  :-)  So he took time out for a close examination of the ceiling fan and skylights.

Of course belly buttons are meant to be filled with sand.

And so is our hair.

We also had great fun with canteloupe at lunch before he went down for his nap.

Then it was my turn to play in my Sandbox!  What did I do?  I read a library book.  Yes I did.  A girl has gotta have a bit of time off.  :-)  ED arrived to pick up The Viking during an amazing downpour, so it seemed prudent to invite them to stay for dinner until the worst of the storms were past.  The rain came down hard and fast enough to overflow the pond!  As they drove away, The Tramp and I walked down to the edge of the pond to inspect the messy aftermath.  The roar of the water draining down the standpipe is quite loud, and frankly, a bit scary.  You can see the water and debris circling around it.


This evening while we watched a few episodes of QI, I got down to business and finished prepping a stack of about 60 t-shirts so I can deliver them back to Patchwork Memories tomorrow.  Then I have a 25 t-shirt quilt to prep and sew.  No rest for the weary!  :-)

Monday, July 14, 2014

The sandbox and The Sandbox

 I'm still not organized enough to post a little every day so here we go again.....

LZF has landed a new job.  A day shift!  Yay!  We are all looking forward to it.  To celebrate, Dad treated everyone to a nice Italian dinner.

In The Sandbox I've had a new jacket pattern hanging on the design wall for a couple of months and I thought it was time to cut into the fabric.

It's been so long since I've done any garment sewing but the jacket is simple enough.  The sleeves went in just fine (yay!) and it's all done except for the sleeve hems.  The sleeves are a bit short so I'll fashion some cuffs out of the leftover fabric.  My usual strategy is to add a couple of inches to everything but since it's been a while I just plain forgot.  :-p  The pattern was frustrating as the size I made doesn't lay out on the fabric as the instructions say it should.  Thank goodness I bought extra! The pattern is sold at quilt shops and quilt shows so I wonder why they don't take into consideration that quilting cottons are the logical fabric people will buy and that quilting cotton shrinks in the wash!  Sigh.

The Viking continues to "assist" me while I sew.

Amazingly, I do get some work done.

We did manage to get to the fireworks display in a neighboring town.  We picniced and The Viking had his first amusement ride.  He seemed more interested in the mechanism than anything else.

The currently accident prone Sailor Son tried to slice off the tip of his finger while peeling apples.  Apparently it was spectacular, traumatic and painful, but will heal. 

Poyla, MD and Stardust attended a traditional Indian wedding and had fun dressing the part.

The second round of repairs have finally been completed at The Other House.  The walls and ceiling are closed up now and we are praying for no more water issues!

The half-painted woodwork at our house has been calling for my attention for many months, so last week I decided to finish some of it.....with supervision of course.

So the upstairs hallway is done.  Black hairs in the paint and all.  :-)

Crazy Maisy, our hunter, has discovered the joys of dirty diapers.  Shame on me for throwing one out where she could tip over the can and reach it.  Shame on her for the total destruction of the diaper and the mess she made of herself and the carpet in the Sandbox.  Such fun to clean up.  NOT!

A scrap of cotton batting makes a great temporary highway.

A little crocheting fills in the quiet moments.

It's been very hot and muggy and the mosquitoes are horrendous.  So The Viking and I have been playing mostly indoors.  We did get a sandbox for the screened porch though.  If I put on the ceiling fan it keeps us cool and mostly mosquito-free.

I finally got around to repotting my African Violets and The Tramp put up shelves for them in the Sandbox.  (Oh how I wish all the woodwork would magically turn white!)  They bloom beautifully in this location.  I'm unhappy with the terracotta pots I chose though, so I found a local greenhouse that specializes in African Violets and I've ordered new pots and fertilizer.  

We were blessed with a flying visit from a special friend this weekend.  I got out my Gadget Guard pattern and was able to whip up a sleeve for her brand new iPad, to protect it while she travels.  We shopped my stash for the fabric and found this floral that is so her.  All we had to do was go out and get the perfect purple zippers.  Fun!  :-)

The Viking will be here tomorrow.  It's supposed to be stormy too.  I think between the sandbox and The Sandbox we'll find plenty to keep us busy!  :-)

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Sanity is slowly being restored around here.....if you don't count insurance claims and sick little boys of course.  We did manage to get to the bank yesterday to deposit all of our important papers.  The little man came with us and behaved very well considering he is still somewhat under the weather.  His mother sent me this photo of him watching the cars go by while she got ready for work in the morning.  You know he couldn't have been feeling his usual energy.  :-)

We had similar quiet times on and off during the day and I did manage to get the prep done for a t-shirt quilt.

He cheered up for a while and we had great fun with a chair on the porch.  It's fun watching him work out some of the basic laws of physics.

This morning Mom and I met with one of our quilting bees.  There was lots of laughter as well as heartfelt prayers for those among us that aren't well.  I got out my hexies for another go at my grandmother's flower garden quilt.  I haven't touched it for a long time.  I was constructing it row by row which meant it wasn't portable and I figured I should start working on it flower by flower instead.  Mom watched me struggle awkwardly with the English paper piecing from her seat across the room.  She made us all laugh by asking me what in the world was I doing, and pointing out how I was doing it all wrong and also how to do it properly.  We always listen to Mom.  ;-)

This afternoon was spent on insurance issues and some errands.  When I got back to the Sandbox I realized some laundry needed to be done.  Funny how you don't see stuff for a long time then suddenly it becomes obvious.  I did a double take when I opened the detergent dispenser for my washing machine.  Ewwww.  Where was the black stuff creeping in from?   Well!  When you detatch the dispenser drawer and take it all apart you discover the ugly crud that's been accumulating out of sight for longer than you want to admit, in and under the drawer.  Shudder.  Anyway, it's all clean now and that's what matters.  :-)

That left a few minutes for some basic crochet therapy.  Just some simple cotton dishcloths.  Weird and colorful.

How long will this little obsession last??  :-)

And now I feel like this....

Good night.

Sunday, June 22, 2014


Yesterday and today were odd days.  We made an appointment with ourselves to sort out all our "important" papers, a task that puts us both out of sorts.  We had documents stashed in various semi-secure places so brought everything together into the Sandbox for processing.  Like most people I think, we tend to keep far more than is needed.  Everything seems precious at first glance.  After much purging yesterday, we took another look this morning and decided to downgrade the importance of a few more documents.  We have a safe deposit box at the bank and had been planning on upgrading to a larger one, but at the rate we were going we would have needed a small vault of our own!  Absurd.  ;-)

All the useless paper will be recycled one way or another.  This left the Tramp with an absurdly large pile of papers to shred and feed to the compost bin.  Until it was thoroughly lubricated, the shredder squeaked and squealed in protest, much to Ngaire's fascination.  Maisy on the other hand, is watching with some trepidation from the safety of her corner.  Ivy hates loud noises so was hiding out in another room I'm sure wondering about the absurd people she's forced to live with.


Once the Sandbox was finally cleared of the detritus I sat down at the sewing machine.  Two more Dear Jane blocks done.  (Yay!)

One absurdly fiddly.....

And one absurdly simple.  :-)

While watching Tim Minchin (very absurd to some I'm sure) in concert at the Royal Albert Hall we enjoyed a bit of ice cream to round out the day.  I thought mine was a rather "normal" combination of vanilla ice cream, fruit cocktail and chocolate Magic Shell topping.  When asked what he wanted, the Tramp had me whip up a combination of coffee ice cream, fruit cocktail and pink lemonade flavored Magic Shell.  (Shudder!)

Which is what set me off in the direction of the absurd.  To each, his or her own absurdity!  :-)

Friday, June 20, 2014


 Ewwww.  Have you seen this?  I went to JoAnn's to buy some cotton yarn for making a few dishcloths.  Scented yarn!  OMG.  It was so awful.  What are they thinking???  Who needs it!

Enough on that subject.  T-shirt quilts are still in the making.  This pretty one went out the door this week.  I've been so overwhelmed with life lately that a whole bunch got out of here without being photographed.  Do I need to photograph them all?  Not really. :-)

I needed to feel some accomplishment with my own sewing projects.  I won these blocks at Christmastime.  I had made two of them and the rest were made by other guild members.  Needless to say they were all different sizes, but I was very pleased when they went together with no problem.  It's lap sized and I'm thinking it might need an added border.  I love the colors.

Ngaire helped put it together.  :-)

I've been making snail's trail blocks for our bee's "bucket swap."  These are the two latest.  We are passing around "buckets" of our own fabrics and then making a block with each person's fabric.

I'm very behind on my Dear Jane blocks and need to devote some time to them.  At 10 per month there are 60 to do so far.  I've done less than half.  Sigh.

 Ngaire felt the need to help me again this evening.  :-)

It's fiddly work and I take a bit of time to get back into it each time I pick it up.

I thought I had lost this brand new ruler and was thrilled to find it in the Dear Jane box.....where it should have been.  :-P

I also discovered that my rotating cutting mat had warped somehow (grrrrr).  I scouted around for something heavy to flatten it.  Oh look!  How about a sewing machine?  :-)

Two blocks done this evening.  Yesssss!

Something we didn't need.  SIGH.  Another flood at The Other House.  The same toilet overflowed all over the place.  At least it didn't sit soaking for a week this time.  ED found the mess after just a few hours thank goodness.  SERVPRO did their usual fine job with blowers and dehumidifiers.  

The new baseboards ripped out once again.

Various plumbers still don't know what's up with this toilet so we had it yanked out and a new one has been installed.

Poor ED and LZF, the living room is a mess too.

And if that wasn't enough, a pipe started leaking in the living room ceiling.  Lightening striking twice and all that......  Sigh.

The wall is soaking wet too.

Not pretty.  We've called on the insurance company again and are waiting to have it all opened up and dried out.  What a pain!!!  None of us need this.

While contractors were at The Other House doing various repairs I spent some time with The Viking. Poor baby, he had come down with a fever.  He played quietly with his cars and trucks for a while

then totally zoned out to Sesame Street playing on my iPad.  You can see how glassy his eyes were.

Then I brought him back to our house and he just sat there poor baby.  ED reports he is much better today though.  :-)

Such a change from his usual easygoing and cheerful self.  

He has a shoe fetish at the moment so a few days ago I brought out my almost never worn party shoes for him to play with.

Cars and silver shoes.  One of those priceless moments.  lol

Another priceless moment.  We sent caterpillars to Stardust for her birthday and received some sweet photos of the butterfly release this week.  I'm glad she enjoyed them.

The other project of the week has been the scanning of photos.  Hundreds of photos.  This little scanner makes it easy though.  

Oh my.  Brown hair and big glasses.


MD and ED


The Sailor Son....and those big glasses again.  :-)

Precious moments.