Archive for May, 2008

I have People

Okay. Try not to laugh, but these are my people:

My Wooden People

I bought these wooden unfinished people with eggs back in March from here. (BTW- I could do some major damage in that store. I’d love to get a ton of these too.) I was all excited when I got these and wanted to try my hand at a new craft- painting. I can’t draw, paint or sculpt, but I wanted to try. How in the heck do people make such fine lines neatly?! I’ve always held artists in high regard because they can look at something and replicate it. It blows my mind.

Close-up Mommy

Anyway. I primed all the eggs and people because the kids will be playing with these for years to come and I didn’t want the paint peeling or chipping off. I painted everything with some non-fancy acrylic paint, but man there were many, many coats involved with alot of drying time in between.

Everything was painted a while ago, but I still need to get the right amount of finish on them. Again, it takes alot! I used the spray-on lacquer, but ran out quickly. My dad just informed me that in order to get that high-gloss, glass-like look you have to spray, sand lightly and spray again. You have to repeat these steps over and over again until you get the finish you like.

My Painted Eggs

Needless to say, I stopped after I used up the can and never sanded between coats. They’ve been sitting in a box for months, but since the weather’s finally turning around here, I think I’ll get ‘er done.

If you want to see some much better ones, check out these and this lady’s who inspired me to try this in the first place.

Advertisements

Deceptive Dots

So I started this lovely dress a month ago. After this success, I thought I could conquer Simplicity 9784 with ease. NOT. In reality, it had nothing to do with the pattern. It was entirely me.
I was trying too many new things: piping inserted on the collar, working with corduroy, adjusting the size since the pattern only went up to 18 mos and I was going for a 2T. Also, I’ve said this before, but I can’t read. After ripping out the same step at least 5 times, I asked Chris what he thought the step was instructing. Duh! I was missing a whole pattern piece and didn’t realize it.
Anyway, I finally finished the dress today and it’s a little short, but it works.

Polka Dot Dress

I found this material at Mill End here in Beaverton and had to have it. I love polka dots!

Polka Dot Dress

The collar was a little tough to sew because I was trying to sew two pieces of thick corduroy with piping inserted along a curve. Curves alone throw me off and adding the other two issues really took some patience. I love the look of piping though and will be trying this again.

Collar

(Sorry to insist, but you gotta see what my little princess wears under such a dress.)

Also, after reading this article, I *really* want to try pleats. Something straight, cotton, tank, square-neck with nice crisp pleats is on my must do list.
But first, I still have to finish Fini’s April b-day presents- yikes. Sorry Fini!

Where Did May Go?

Wonder where I’ve been? Here’s the rundown:
– Wedding in Seattle, beautiful
– Week at Black Butte Ranch in Central Oregon, aaaah
– My 35th Birthday, along with baby sis Liz- on the same day
– Mother’s Day, I cleaned
– Step-sis’ Baby Shower, lovely
– Dad’s 62nd Birthday, hot
– Chris’ and BIL’s Birthday, busy
– 2 hours of tennis lessons every Saturday for the boys, pure entertainment!
– More typing work, argh
– Nailing notes on my guitar and now moving on to chords, ouch
– Not one sewing project started or completed! (Well, one- I made a cozy for a glass ikea stein for my dad’s b-day. He’s a fanatic boiling-hot-water drinker. Not much of a project and no picture to post so there you go.)

– And lastly, Memorial Day Morel hunting on Mt. Hood- found nothing, but LBMs (little brown mushrooms for you non-shroomers).

Here’s some shots from our day up in the mountains:


Morel Hunting

Hang On

Whoa

Hood River

My Princess

New Hobby

I hit 35 last week and didn’t have my sewing machine (in the shop for it’s yearly check-up) so what’s a girl to do?  Why not start a new hobby?

My New Hobby

This is my newest baby- a La Patrie Etude classical guitar. I researched guitars for days before deciding on a classical, nylon-string guitar versus an acoustic, steel-string guitar. I found this beauty with a hard case on CL and snapped it up.

Since I have no musical background whatsoever, I decided to teach myself the basics before taking lessons. So far I have down notes E, F and G and my left index finger is SORE. (I’m glad I didn’t go with a steel string guitar!) I’m using these books to get me started and can pretty much follow it easily. I’m having a blast, but with 2 time consuming hobbies and 3 kids, you can bet my house is a disaster and the laundry pile has turned into a mountain.

I played my first song (all on one string) for Chris last night. It was wonderful sitting on our deck, a gin & tonic within reach, tiki torches lit, strumming my guitar.  Having music in one’s life is more important than a clean house in my book.

Happy

Things that are making me happy lately:

New Marriage

New Marriage

New shoes

My New Shoes!

(These are Naot Gardenia Shoes in Toffee)

New Sunglasses

New Sunglasses

New Morels

New Morels!

New Baby Geese

New Babies

New bike trails we have yet to explore!

New Bike Trails

Spring-ing Up

We were able to get out this weekend and accomplish some major yard work- at least for us.

Livvie took a 4-hour nap so I was able to spend just about the entire day outside. We started off the day getting a load of dirt from our favorite dumping ground- Grimm’s. We took our hoop-D trailer and filled her up as much as she could hold. The kids love watching the huge loaders, trucks and mountains of dirt get moved around.

Sprucing Up the Yard

We headed home and got to work planting strawberries, peas (again, since our earlier planting hasn’t been doing well), begonias, impatients, and geraniums. We also cleaned out our front bed which I have wanted to re-plant since we moved into our house. I LOVE it! It’s empty, clean and ready for something new.

Our Plant-Mover

I wanted to show this picture because it shows Chris’ favorite yard tool- our plant mover. During high school, he worked at a small nursery which used old lawnmower bases to move around their inventory. After moving into our house, Chris immediately went to the recycling center and picked up an old, heavy lawnmower. He removed all parts except the metal base which is basically a large, flat surface. We have used this thing for many, many plant moves and I’ve come to rely on it as well.  You don’t have to move the plant high into a wheelbarrow or anything like that.  You simply scoot the plant carefully onto the base and wheel it where you need it to go.  It’s strong, stable and low to the ground.  We’ve just about moved every rhododendron, tree and shrub using this little contraption.

I’m getting anxious for summer and want to plant the garden and flower seeds, but it’s still chilly and the ground is very wet.  I can’t wait for some r & r next week with just my kids and after that, summer will be just around the corner.  I love May!  Vacation, Mother’s Day and my 35th birthday- it’s a good month isn’t it?