Tuesday, May 31, 2016

long weekend projects

Today is the last day of my long weekend.  It was Memorial day this weekend but I took today off as well to take George into the vet to get her kitty boosters.  I had made the appointment a couple weeks ago, and made the appointment around a lunchtime.  I still have the mindset sometimes that I only live a mile from work and can just run home, the vet and home again on a lunchtime.  My new house is about 20 minutes from the vet's office so a lunchtime would not work!  I have to say I am SO proud of George!  I was wondering how she would do and she didn't try to bite, scratch or anything at all!  Awwww turns out she's sweet after all.

So!  Long weekend!  I had mentioned that I wanted to put shelves in the closets of my sewing room and I thought this weekend would be the perfect time to do it.  I almost chickened out a few times.  So, advice.  I've heard it said before "measure twice, cut once" and that is very true!  I did not measure twice and therefore ended up with too small of shelving pieces.  Boo!
Also good advice: know what setting your drill is on.  There is a button on mine that has forward and backward.  The first screw I attempted I had it on backward so it just kept flipping the screw out instead of screwing it in.  So frustrating!  Until I noticed I had pushed in the backward button.  Doh!

After that it went fairly smoothly.  One piece of wood for the side brackets split down the middle when I screwed it, so I think it must have been a defective piece of wood, or I hit it just right to split it.  I did buy cheap plywood.  Which is strong, but uggggggly!  Initially I thought painting might do the trick but it was so rough and knotty that it wouldn't have looked nice.  Next thought: fabric!  

I covered the shelves after securing them to the side brackets and used my staple gun to adhere the fabric.  It's not perfect, but looks nice and won't snag my stash.  Yesterday I worked on unpacking boxes of fabric and putting them in color order on the shelves.  I have a TON and I do mean a ton of little scraps.  Like two tubs worth.  I didn't have the energy to figure out what to do with those so unfortunately the sewing room is still looking like a disaster zone. Uggg.

I did sort out some fabrics that I don't want and put them in a box.  Stuff that is too thin to quilt with or I just don't really like.  One good thing is that the subdivision I moved to has an annual yard sale, like almost every house has a yard sale and the whole town knows about it.  So, it's free advertising and gets lots of traffic.  I am thinking I can put up a table or two of stuff.  Plus Mom will be visiting that weekend so I let her know in case she wants to pack anything up here.  It will be interesting, for sure!

 This weekend being Memorial day weekend, I knew I wanted to go visit Scott at the cemetery.  Part of his cremains are buried at the National Cemetery in Eagle Point, which is roughly an hour drive from me.  I discovered the first year that they put up little flags on all the headstones.  It is stunning.  It's beautiful, it's sobering.  Also what I discovered that first year is that it is a busy day!  So, I drove over Sunday night when it would be the quietest.  It's been 3 years and I still feel so much better after I go and talk to him. He was my best friend, my confidant.  I used to chatter on about everything to him.  And God bless him, he was such a good listener!  I really miss that.

This is right inside the entrance.

Yesterday I decided to tackle a project that I've kind of been avoiding.  I had a stack of socks that needed either end woven in or holes fixed.  I discovered the hard way that you should not machine wash hand knit socks with other regular laundry items!!!!  Just don't do it.  I have 3 pairs that I had washed all at the same time and something must have caught at each one and ripped a hole in all of them.  I think maybe one sock made it out unscathed...

But, I had never darned socks before.  I found a tutorial online and started to it.  I think, um, it must be an acquired talent?  Yikes!  Mine turned out super rough!  But, I guess the main point is to fix the holes and I definitely did that.  Thankfully I still had leftover bits of all the yarns I used.  The only one that I didn't have the color was the top left sock.  You can see in the beige area the bright pink patch.  Meh.  No one but me is going to notice.

The rest of the afternoon I am just going to chill out and knit or cross stitch!  About cross stitch.  It's funny, I noticed that I really have been wanting to stitch but I'm almost done with my second rhubarb sock - oh yeah, that's what I've started calling my newest pair of socks! - but anyway, I have been very strict with myself that I must finish those before working on anything else.  Why?  I don't even know!  But, I am going to reward myself for mowing the lawn before taking George to the vet with some stitching :)  

I hope you all have a great day, week, and do something that brings you joy!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

more nest feathering

Oh my goodness this weekend.  I literally have not left my house.  Ok.  Except I did leave the house to go into the garage because it has a separate door.  Does that count?  Yesterday I thought maybe I'd go to a movie or go into town to rent a movie.  But, then that just felt like too much effort.  ha!    And today has pretty much been the same debate.  Like I know I'll need groceries for the week.  But, driving into town just for that seems lame.  I'll just go after work tomorrow I think.  Save gas.

 I have had human contact other than podcasts, so that's good.  Jan and her daughter came over yesterday afternoon so I could alter a prom dress.  Aye.  Chiffon is really not my favorite.  But, Jan's daughter is teensy tiny, like 5 feet and a size zero, so they got lucky to find a dress that even fit, it's just too long.  It turned out to be easier than I thought but I had them come back over today before I cut.  I was planning a skinny rolled hem so I did the first fold and sewed the liner and the outer dress and had her try it on again.  Then, cut and rolled that hem over to encase the raw edge.  Not hard, just nerve wracking!

Yesterday I put up this little lacy curtain in the kitchen at the top of the window box.  I wanted something that would still allow lots of light in and I think this does that.  I've had a bunch of different sized lace curtains for a lotta of years and this is the first time I've gotten to use them!  The others may not get used though because they are odd lengths.  Like not long enough to cover a window.  That little heart shaped glass is stained glass except the clear part has prism edges.
In other house decorating news I bought a bed for the spare oom!  I need to get some pillows and plain bedspread, maybe a bedskirt and some curtains in there.  Oh and a chair for the desk.  
I found this pillow in a box in the sewing room.  I think I had taken it out to the craft house before I moved to make another pillow case the same size and then packed it in with the fabric!  I'm sure I'm going to find all kinds of random in those boxes!  Here's a little close up, I just love these silly monsters!

In sock knitting this week I am almost to the heel of the second sock in this pair.  I am really loving these socks!  I decided to do stripes on the cuff and I like the way that turned out.  The greeny bluey main color is a much denser yarn which is super squishy!  With my last pair of socks I had written down the number of rows for each section and I have done that with these as well.  Because the yarn is denser I had less rows from the toe to get to the heel.

At the beginning of this week I had my first official dinner guests!  Scott's parents were in town for a couple days so I had them over Monday night for tacos.  It was very special.  I was so happy to share my new house with them!  Back at the rental I had them over for dinner some time after Scott had passed and I did not have a dining room or table to serve a meal at.  I did buy a small table to put in my kitchen so I'd have somewhere to serve from but it was still awkward.  That moment in time was one of the catalysts for me to start looking for a home with a dining room.

Fast forward to this week.  I was so pleased to invite them in, show them around, explain all the features that I love.  And then we shared a meal, visited and enjoyed the evening.  Even cleaning up with Caye was a pleasure.  I know that may sound silly, but for me it's not.  I've learned so much from her, so many little homemakery things that can be taken for granted sometimes.  So, for me to be the hostess and to put in practice things I've watched - it  was nice.  

Next month I'll get to have my Mom visit and that will be a pleasure as well!  My first weekend guest!  I am going to have so much fun showing her my home.   And we are going to plan plants and garden areas.  I'm very much looking forward to it!  

I am hoping to get more progress done in the sewing room, maybe shelves up in the closets and fabric sorted and organized.  I am very much looking forward to getting that room sorted.  The chair in there finally gave up the ghost today.  The legs have been wobbly at best and I did try wood glue but it was a no go!  I feel like I have so many ideas of things I want to make but I need to be able to find the fabric I want to use easily.  And I need to get a design wall set up.  Maybe projects for next weekend?

Monday, May 16, 2016

chores and feelings

I feel like I got a lot done this weekend, mostly chore type stuff I needed to get done.  I've been slowly decorating my new house.  Mostly just waiting to see what areas feel like they need color, you know?  
This little collage is at the end of the hallway where the bedrooms are.  I had kind of thought maybe I'd put a picture there but then I changed my mind.  In the rental I had this arrangement in the kitchen, except the wreath at the bottom was hanging from a cabinet door.

Saturday I did some weed eating in the back yard.  I finished right as it started pouring rain!  Perfect timing.  I did laundry and cleaned up the house, which felt good to do. The wood floors really show how much Rocky and George shed.  I'm so glad I can sweep it up, it's not trapped in carpet.

I also finally blocked my Duchess of Devonshire shawl.  I finished this in February, but that was right as I was packing and really ramping up to move so it got put aside.  I used some Soak wash in an ocean kind of scent.  George, of course, had to be right in the middle of the action!  She cracks me up!

So I bought a bed for the spare 'oom so my Mom can come visit and have somewhere to sleep.  As soon as I set it up George was right on top of it and jumping in the window.  She loves to keep an eye on the neighborhood. Not that there's much action happening, it's a quiet neighborhood.  Which I like.

 I took this picture of the stitches up close because my camera has trouble catching all the colors.  It's really like rainbow colored and vibrant.  One of the greens is like neon.
Sunday was more of the same, little chores around the house.  I really wanted to make some strawberry rhubarb jam.  I was fortunate to have a rhubarb plant already here in the front flower bed when I moved in!  It's quite syrupy right now but I think it may gel up in time.  Not that it will last very long! ha!

I know I've been a bit distant from my blog.  I've been feeling a bit overwhelmed lately.  I don't even know if that's the right word really.  I guess since I can't exactly explain how I feel I haven't felt like anything I say would come out right.  Like not genuine.  I simply can't act very well.  I've been trying to keep the blog light, only talk about crafty stuff or general random stuff.  Which is fine. I don't even know what people want to read, who even reads this blog.  So that's part of it too.  When you don't know your audience it's hard to know what I should say - like am I saying too much?  too personal?  not enough?

Which is funny because when I knew it was just a couple friends and my Mom reading I didn't care what I wrote.  Well.  Except for my Mom, couldn't write too much that might make her worry.  Like after Scott died it would upset her that I was upset.  So then I started trying not to be too dark, too much.  

Here's the thing: I am too much.  I think too much.  I feel too much.  I definitely eat too much!  I talk about my grief too much.  I miss my husband too much.  I miss the life I wanted with him too much.

But lately....especially with this new house, I've felt a slight shift.  Which feels like a betrayal - as if I should worry about that! but it does.  The fact is that I did not die when Scott did.  I felt as though I could have.  When your heart is so wrapped around someone else and they die, your heart shatters.  And implodes.  There are days that I feel I am walking around with a gaping sucking wound where my heart is.  It explodes with pain and then sucks back in on itself again.  It is a horrid feeling that has no relief.  

What do I do with that when I feel like that and everyone around me is normal?  People expect me to be "over" it.  We all know there is no over it.  We all know that but I'm the only one feeling the cavern of my heart.  People say "you're not alone".  People say of course you're not over it.  But there's an impatience I feel from them.  It's like a "it's been 3 years are you still talking about that?" pause I get. It's hard to be around people who can't relate, who don't want to.  Or there are new people who don't even know what happened or who Scott was and explaining sucks.

So I don't even know my point.  I guess just that in between the normal, everyday stuff I still get overwhelmed and set back.  And I've mostly adjusted to that, learned to gloss it over and adapt.  But I also need a space where it's safe to let my feelings out, where no one visibly winces or shrinks away or doesn't know what do, say, or how to handle me.  This blog doesn't shy away from me.  It is freedom to type out my feelings, back space what I don't want to share - but I got it out!  

I am not going to apologize for making any of you uncomfortable.  Unless it's my Mom, ha!  Then, sorry Mom but you know I'll feel better just getting it all out.

Sunday, May 1, 2016


I've been knitting today with the back door open and the sounds of chirping birds and my wind chimes are what I hear.  I was talking to my Mom on the phone earlier and she asked me what the sound in the background was. I didn't realize she could hear the chimes.  She said they sounded magical like they were calling the fairies home.  That, friends, is a typical Mom saying and I don't want to forget it.  What a lovely thing to say, to imagine.

Look how far I've gotten on my socks!  I'm very nearly to the heel.  The light parts in between the darker remind me of two things: an ekg blip and also the frothy part of a wave.