Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Years Resolutions

Being a perpetually enthusiastic, gotta try new things kind of gal, I enjoy new beginnings.  So, even though I don't "resolve" to make certain changes in my life, the new year gives me an opportunity to make a reset.  The beginning of the school year in September, with all of its intensities and new routines, flows right into the holiday run-up.  For me this included a month of nearly solid internship commitments and then the entire family has collapsed into a heap of matrix-attached goo for the past two and a half weeks.  It's a recipe for reflection, and as I start to think about getting geared up to start another push, of *course* I look at what's worked and what hasn't.

What's worked:  2013 was my first year in my forties, and I've embraced full adulthood.  I like the person I am, and I'm not inclined to change her.  What I am inclined to do is be who I am, a lot less apologetically.  I'm accountable to God and I'm accountable to my beloved husband.  That's it.  Trying to fit myself into a mold for someone else, no matter how much I admire that someone else?  Forget it.  I have a job to do - it's not anyone else's job.  I *like* being busy and doing things.   So you're likely to get more of my enthusiasm poured out.  Hope you like it - if not, you might want to run.  ;)

What didn't work so well:  2013 was the year of the crash diet.  -sighs-  Did they work?  No, at least not for more than a few months.  2014 is a year where I take better care of my physical self, and work towards my strengths.  I need to get my kiddos out and about too - so we will be pursuing long walks and upper body strength.  My foot has gotten so much better (thank you Lord!) that this seems possible.  You want to really appreciate something?  Have it taken away from you.  I haven't been able to indulge in proper walks in years, it's time to do so.

Slight changes in course:  I've been quite cerebral in the past few years.  This is a year for me to DO more.  More sewing.  More writing.  More *praying*.  More serving.  I feel the press of time - I want to make good use of every golden hour, for I don't know when that Trump will sound.  The more I do, the more I pour myself out, the more joy I have.  It's just how it goes, you know?  That means I'll be looking for ways to work smarter rather than harder on the home front - it's not like I ever really get that sorted to my satisfaction.  I'd like to spend more time in the garden and outdoors generally.  It makes for a happy Hearthie.  Carpe diem!!!!!!

Little Things:  I'm teaching myself to make corsets this year (see the All Laced Up blog link on the left hand side of this page).  I'm stuck wearing gloves this year - and will thus be cranking a few out, because I can never find what I want.  (But this is news?)  I have a TON of sewing projects that have been hanging fire... I could make a list but then I might have to go hide under the bed for a while.  It's not just the corseting that will be keeping me busy, I assure you.  Let's see.  I should be finishing my internship in the next month or so... need to figure out where to serve the church.  There are kiddo adjustments to be done. Sewing for the Tabernacle project at the church.  More tea parties.  More time with friends.  More hospitality.  More dusting.  :p

So... as always, I have so much stuff I'd like to do that it will take at least five of me to get all of it done.  I'm not going to apologize for that or try to adjust it down to "reality".  I'm just going to go for it, and enjoy whatever progress I make.  Please come along with me and enjoy the show - it's more fun to be a bouncy rabbit when you have some company!

Friday, December 27, 2013


I took some lame lace gloves that I picked up at the mall and made them into fingerless, lined gloves.  (I have to line the lace - sort of misses the point of keeping my hand from the sun).

I'm not wild about them, but hey - finished object.  And I'll wear them until I can get materials to try my hand at a from-scratch version.

 Before:  Yeah.  Shouldn't have bought them.  Hate having to look at things that people have to get out from cases for you... :p  And I was discouraged - this was the ONLY pair of not-fuzzy-warm gloves the mall had to offer the other night.

Before and after.

After:   Eh.  The pink was too light and the whole effect is way too foofy for my taste.  However.  They'll do to drive 'round, at least until I can get some others made/bought.  It's been in the mid-70s here.  I do NOT want to run around in my fuzzy gloves - or in my leather driving gloves.  Not.  And I learned that fingerless gloves aren't the most complicated things in the world.

Construction notes:  I took the lace gloves, cut the fingers off, cut the thumb off, cut the lace ruffle off, and lined the back with a square of scrap satin from stash.  Translucent ribbon on top for finishing and 'round the wrist to fasten.  Also from stash (and from the dollar store).  Basically out the $12 I spent on the lace gloves, which was too much.  :P  But oh well.  I did all the sewing by hand, it being too small/fussy a job to put through the sewing machine.

I think I'm going to get some plain tshirt knit and ornament it up a bit.  These are rectangles with a thumb hole, I think I can handle that.  ;)

Oh, and I'm going to try to be "fashionable" and make them a bit longer, since fingerless gloves are being worn mid-forearm at the moment.  

Saturday, December 21, 2013

My husband is a sweetie

Props to the husband-man. 

My hand is starting to make scar tissue in a couple of spots and I'm sad about that.  (I guess I shouldn't admit to being vain, but whatever.  Truth is truth).  DH noticed that I was sad and asked me what was up.  Normally I wouldn't tell him - but I've been working hard on being more forthcoming (and *truthful*, even when I think I'm being silly) so I told him that I was sad about my hand. 

Later, when I got home from the Massive Mall Hunt our church runs every year... where I spent my time as hunted hunting down gloves... I came home with these babies and he told me that A) they were quite fetching and B) he's always liked fingerless gloves.

And that helped.

And he's awesome.  So... there.  :)  It has been reported to me that hearing positive reports about husbandly behavior is a good thing, so there you go.  A positive report. 

Also - aren't these cute?  I know I said "not fuzzy" but ... "not fuzzy" at Christmastime apparently isn't a glove option.  And I do need something to walk the dog in. 

Oh yes, I'll walk the dog in these.  Of course!  :D

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Wild World of Gloves

I'm not a big glove girl.  It rarely gets cold enough here to warrant the wearing of gloves and I run warm, particularly my hands and feet, so the last thing I want to do is wear gloves in the summer.

Guess what?  All the burn resources tell me that I should keep my burn out of sunlight for the next year.  I burned the back of my hand, aka a place that is exposed to sunlight if *I* am exposed to sunlight, including while I drive my car.

I guess I'm breaking out the gloves... because I want to do everything I can to minimize scarring.  (I scar easily).

Right now we've finally reached the stage of oiling.  I'm lathering my spankin' new skin with Vit E several times a day.  Finally finally out of the polysporin and bandage routine.  My skin is SO ready to be done with vaseline based stuff!  I continue pushing vitamins.

So.  If you have some glove resources.... or burnscar remedies.... send 'em along.

As for the rest of life - I just resumed something approximating my normal level of manual flexibility, so I'm not sewing.  I'm playing Minecraft and um... yeah.  Not really much else.  Bored, ready for more energy!

Hope everyone is having a good evening............. :)

Sunday, December 15, 2013

California's State Religion?

is probably the cult of the body.  If so, taking vitamins is a major ritual for all natives of the Golden State.

I *take* vitamins.  Err.  I have a vitamin bin and I fill it up and sometimes I actually take them.  :p  I have it all written down, and there's reasons for all the horsepills in the box.

So anyway.  I'm recovering from this burnt hand and all of a sudden I turn into pregnancy girl.  I'm NOT pregnant, but the way I want to eat and nap, I might as well be.  Floppy McCraversons, that's me.  I've been reading up on the healing arc and saw that increased calorie/increased vitamin dietary regimes are the usual in burn wards.  Well... I could *take* the vitamins, right?

Took the vitamins.  Two days running.  Third day, Floppy McCraversons went away.  Didn't think much of it, just figured I'd gotten through the hurdle.  Didn't take my vitamins for a couple of days.  FC came back.  Took my vitamins.  This time, four hours later (and a bit of good news) and I'm pinging off the walls.

Oh, and my appetite?  Went from Feral Preggo Girl to Less Than Normal.

Mind you, I "take my vitamins" ... and I get fairly regular about them when I'm dieting.  I think I just decided to A) increase my vitamins (I have certainly increased them until I have new skin - but I meant for the duration) and B) actually take them.

It's not time to go pedal to metal on my waistline, I'm just holding fire for now.  But ... when I can, I'm going to need everything I know about myself.

And now I know something more about something I thought already sussed out.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Personal Style Solutions

Random: Does it ever feel like you can dress everyone except yourself?  All the unpaid fashionistas I know are like me, can't dress themselves but ... other people?  Easy.

Went to the mall with my mom today.  She's been retired for about 3 years now, and she's recently lost a ton of weight.  (Glad to see one of us truly succeeded with paleo!)  She looks amazing - especially for 72.  If she didn't have a dowager's hump (drink your milk and stand up straight, children!) she'd easily pass for five years younger. 

So - her old clothes don't fit, and while she likes to look put-together (no track pants out of the house for my mom) she doesn't need corporate clothes.  She just wants to look good.

Mom (who doesn't care to have her image on the 'net, more's the pity) was once asked to model sportswear in NYC.  I mean someone walked up to her and offered her a modeling job - but she had to emaciate herself and she wasn't into that, so she said no.   She's *that* good-looking.  (With a habit of nearly never wearing makeup and a five minute beauty routine).

Is it a huge jump to think that my mom looks AMAZING in sportswear?  I kept trying to convince her to wear interesting textures, buy some good jeans... she's still wearing the styles she wore as the senior person in the office, with 40 extra pounds that she's no longer carrying.  She said she was worried about dressing too young... she makes me laugh.  She wouldn't dress "too young" on a bet...

So.  All that to say, I feel like everyone has a mood or two of clothing that suits them to a T.  Finding it and embracing it is where the awesome hangs out.  You can't be "too pretty".  You can be too immodest, too sexy, you can dress too youthfully - but you can't be too pretty.

Now to get Mom to buy some jeans that fit...........................

Just Stuff

Where have I been?   Busy.  And injured.  :p

I see I last posted Sunday the 1st... frankly, I'd been pre-posting.  So - what have I been up to?  Not sewing, although I did cut pajamas for my son - hopefully I can sew those up this Friday.

Lots of followarounds for church.  I hooked up the deacons and the ushers.  Normal errands and whatnot.  Got a cord of wood in on Friday.

I splashed boiling oil over the back of my hand on Thursday.  Prayer answered - it didn't hurt like a burn does, not ever.  It ached from the swelling that night... and that's pretty much it.  Now that the blisters (second degree burn) have broken, the skin underneath isn't terrifically happy, but it *still* doesn't hurt the way burns hurt.  (I burn my fingers on my iron pretty regularly, first degree only, and they hurt lots more than this has, although they're not as much of a pain in the butt). 

I've been freaked out by the whole thing even though God's gotten the pain away.  It's embarrassing, quite frankly.  I am *so* afraid of pain.  And even without pain, looking at my hand and getting grossed out... yikes.  This sort of thing shows you what's really inside.  So much fear and anxiety in my heart - as I said, it's embarrassing.  (Thanks for the tea and sympathy, friends I've shared this with - I might not have hurt, but I've been super stressed!)

God has been at my back, directing me, taking care of all the "stuff" and showing me what to do and getting things organized - and what do I repay Him with?  Fear.  -sighs-

Well.  I know it's here, I guess I just have to fight it with more faith!!!

Random:  Why does Chrome have a harder time with composition in BlogSpot than does IE?  Aren't Chrome and BS both owned by Google?  -makes my head hurt-

Not much else up... enjoying a nice fire and a pleasant evening at home.  Went to the mall with my mom today, not much lovely around except some cashmere sweaters.... ;)

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Sewing Notes: Waist Stay

I like to add waist stays to my long heavy skirts - the stay keeps the skirt where it belongs.  I don't have a particularly well-defined waist, so loose garments tend to slide down.  Not pleasant.

"Waist stay" sounds like a terribly technical thing, but really it's not.  It's just a ribbon about 1/2" smaller in total than the waist measurement on the skirt itself.  You sew it in, really just on the seams, put in a hook and eye (or a very flat button) and voila - waist stay.

A picture is worth 1000 words.........

This is the waist stay I put in my new denim skirt when closed.  Do you see much difference in the way it closes things?  Of course not.  (You do see the interfacing.  Always interface your zippers, even on heavy fabrics).

Here it is buttoned with the waist stay open.  You can see how it's just a smidge larger than the button closure, making for a nice snug fit. 

I weighed the denim skirt in question the other day.  Five pounds.  Five pounds of fabric, hanging off my waist.  Yes, it *does* slide if it's not given a bit of help.  This little ribbon is my "little help".  :)  You wouldn't think a hair ribbon from the dollar store would do that...

I find as I read further in "couture" sewing that mostly it's just about the differences in craftsmanship and materials.  You really can do quite a few little couture touches at home, and they're not particularly difficult to do (at least one at a time!).  Fine craftsmanship is always worth the work. 

No, it's not an overnight thing, learning any craft - but I find that it's worth it. 

Such a small detail to make such a difference.