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for Comic Con (coming this Star Wars weekend (5/5. Give it a minute. Say the date like Sir Alec with a mild lisp. May the......fourth. Be with you! :lol:)). At NTIF, Herself had an idea for the punniest cosplay - urban assault pants and boots, with a grammar-centric shirt, red pens, and our Boba Fett helmet. I'd be a Gramandolorian! :rofl: We hit the Army store the next weekend where I picked up the pants and boots (no worries- they'll be used for Nerfing, too!) I was all set, and rather proud of myself, when we got an email from the Con.......ALL the voice actors for MHA are going to be there. Oh noes!

Fortunately, we have a cosplay hoodie pattern, and JoAnn's had all their fleece on sale. I traced off my pattern....decided it looked "small", so added to it, then panicked and decided to make a test sew, first. Walmart had fleece for $3.50/yard, so I grabbed 3 yards, ran home, and...this happened:

hoodie - dragon back

hoodie - dragon front hood

I had planned on doing a plain one....but got to the hood, where the instructions said "if adding details, STOP and do it now!" and...well, why not? It turned out too big - because, of course, the pattern was correct. :sigh: Still, I've worn the heck out of this thing, so - win!

Then I cut out the good fabric. I decided I needed an All Might Silver Age hoodie (Herself has a Golden Age one, and you can find those all over the place. The Silver Age.....not so much, unless you want a cheap printed one.) I think it turned out pretty good:

hoodie - AM front finished

hoodie - AM sleeve finished

hoodie - AM back finished

hoodie - AM back cape

Yes, it has a cape. No, it's not permanent. Just funny. :lol:

Then Herself decided SHE needed another hoodie...this time, Bakugou. I told her SHE needed to sew it herself, so......we ran out and bought the fabric (which was now *70%* off. Woot!) While she dithered on beginning (just started today) , I decided to whip up another one....this time, Uraraka.

hoodie - Uraraka front finished

hoodie - Uraraka back

I even sewed in the back piece! I'm proud of this one - I had found (and purchased) a pattern, but upon actually looking at it, decided it wasn't accurate enough. (Yeah, yeah - it's a hoodie. Still......if I'm going to put in the effort, it's going to be as close as I can get it. :shrug:)

So. That's 2 days down - 3 if I do use the Gramandolorian cosplay on Sunday. We'll see.......

Anyway. Taxes are due tomorrow - yes, a LOT of people owe this year. No, it shouldn't be a surprise - withholding was Decreased this year. Withholding is a payment plan for the taxes you owe......DEcreasing the "payment" doesn't decrease the amount due. Anyone who's surprised by this wasn't paying attention. (That'd be a LOT of folks. :sigh:) Add to it the fact that exemptions were changed, so most people can't go long form anymore, and the fact that taxes due go up almost every year, and.....yeah.

We were at a funeral yesterday for one of our clients. We had just finished his return......and he was in a fatal truck accident. Very sad.....we've already contacted his heir, and have offered to help with any financial questions they have.

I *really* need to start working on jeans soon. I am running out of pants to wear - for real. And undergarments........at least we're done with taxes for the moment. We filed 3 extensions, but have time before they are due. Think I'll try to spend some time in the Studio this week, working on "real" clothes.
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First up, what you're actually here for - Puppy Pictures!

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(See, I know my audience! :lol:) The top pic is from the Vet's yesterday (final puppy visit. He's a healthy pup - he went from 35 pounds 3 weeks ago to *56* pounds yesterday.); the other 2 were taken on Friday for the breeder. He's such a cutie! :lol:

The husband started his new job yesterday. Today they threw him on an actual route; he had to be ready to roll out of the warehouse at 0530. Which meant he had to get UP at 0330. Which meant *I* had to get up at 0330. :sigh: Ah, well - its not like I was sleeping well, anyway.

I have another short contract job this week......which is good, financial-wise. I made a batch of soap for laundry-use........basically just a bunch of vegetable shortening and scent. :ugh: NOT for skin-use, but perfect for laundry-use. I also have 3 bags cut out, just need sewing up. When I'm more awake.

Oh! I bought a video game - My Hero Academia: My Hero One's Justice. It's *AWESOME*, especially if you're a fan. Himself and I have been bashing each other - I've even won a couple of times! :rofl:
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I have some good excuses, though....

Duncan sleepy 2

Duncan sleepy

Duncan face

Seriously, can you blame me? :lol:

Let's see.....


1. Duncan came home 9/16, and had his first vet visit on 9/17. He's healthy and happy, and so are we. He's figured out the pet door....but hasn't quite figured out that poopies are OUTside, not Inside. He's also figured out how to climb up on the couch...puppy snuggles are great!

2. Herself and I opened an Etsy shop - I can't figure out how to link here, but the shop name is thatdamnfangirl . Herself's idea - it's a riff on something Kacchan from MHA says ("You damn nerd!") She thought it was hysterical, so......there ya go. Not much there right now except earrings, but I'll be uploading bags as soon as I finish my cosplay. (Uraraka from MHA, in her UA uniform, with a Deku doll. We have the wig, and I've finished the blouse. Just need to do the jacket and skirt....I have until 10/19.....wish me luck!)

3. The Lord sent a contract job my way - it has been a HUGE blessing. I've earned enough so far to buy a new, improved rice cooker (Himself's request. This thing.....it's a Zojirushi, it has multiple rice type settings, and....well. I haven't figured it all out yet, but Himself has.), and new tires for the Jeep (soon as that check comes in, we're off to Firestone. :huzzah!: Next up is some more storage for my studio (Ikea lack and kallax, both in white), and a new sofa and loveseat for the living room. (Ikea. The Evil Empire has me in thrall. :lol:)

4. Ankle......yeah. Moving on.....:sigh:

Happy Sukkot, y'all!
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We didn't get to visit the breeder this weekend (more on that in a moment), but she sent me some lovely pictures yesterday. He's gotten Big!

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We're planning on going out this weekend, since all our necessary chores are done (as of today - right now, in fact.) See......last August, when we got our septic tank pumped, they informed me that the tank (fiberglass) was collapsing, and gave me anywhere from a few months to a year.

It lasted just at 1 year. Last month, the alarm went off - so we called. They sent out an inspector.....long story short, the tank has totally collapsed and needed replacing STAT. Gave me an estimate of 6 weeks......2 days later the planner came out, did a drawing, and gave me an estimate of, still, 6 weeks.

3 days later, he called and said they'd install the new CONCRETE tank, in *3* weeks. Or, today. :gulp:

So. I went into work mode. No one else did. :sigh: Last weekend, SG finally realized that Oh, S**t! Tank install is THIS THURSDAY oh dear! :sigh:

The back fence has been moved to behind my Studio (FINALLY! 2 years I've been waiting......) We put up a temporary side fence, and yesterday (yup. YESTERDAY. Why do I even....?) the old back fence was removed (well....most of it. There's still 16' that needs to come down....but at least MOST of it's down, right?)

This AM, SG removed the temporary side fence so that they could get the equipment in. I have 5 very upset dogs in the house right now - don't I understand that there are THINGS that need barking at? Outside? Now???? :lol:

We also got Himself's Studio and the "sweat shop" (what? It's better than "torture chamber", yes?)(home gym) painted, all the lights/fans installed, and measured for carpet. The carpet has been ordered and paid for, and the floor store ordered it Tuesday. Should be here in 2 weeks or so.....

Herself and I have "opened" an easy store. There's only 1 thing in it right now (Pokemon cards), but soon it'll be stocked with geeky jewelry and bags. I'll post a link once it's open - and then I will try not to mention it much again. I don't want this to devolve into an advertisement channel. :lol:

ETA: well....I am a klutz. While the guys were getting ready to remove the electrical box for the old system, they told me they needed to cut the power. I said OK, then realized that they didn’t know to also cut the solar box. I ran outside and got them safe, watched them remove the box, tie off the wires, and restart both boxes. I turned to walk back to the door, and found a hole Chloe had dug....and felt - and heard - something in my left ankle POP. Sigh. I have an orange-sized ankle now, turning a lovely shade of black - down from the softball-sized ankle of yesterday. Hurts......but I’ve survived worse. I e is my friend.......
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Sorry about last week - we had to skip the visit due to working on the new building...but this week! We spent a good hour with him yesterday. He's looking more and more like a *real* Wolfie now!

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I got PUPPY KISSES!!!!!!!! Lots of them - he's a snuggler!

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Sleepy baby....

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VERY sleepy - you can see how big he's gotten!

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He's got a nice profile.

SG wants to show........oi vey! I've never shown dogs....but horses. Horse shows I know. Political to the max. Expensive. The breeder says dog shows aren't very expensive, but they ARE political. Fun.......well, it may be. We'll see. SG wants to breed.......again, we'll see. *I* just want a Wolfie around the house. :lol:

Gotta skitter - rain is moving in, and I need to be in the Studio.
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We ran out and saw wee Duncan on Friday - the breeder was taking one of her Danes to a show over the weekend, so...if we wanted snuggles, it had to be Friday. No biggie - the kids and I wanted to hit Ikea, which is in between us and the breeder, so it all worked out.

On Friday, he had 1 eye open! You can see just how much bigger he is now - it takes more than 1 hand to hold him!


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By Saturday evening, he had both eyes open. He's SO CUTE!!!

We spent an hour with him - me snuggling, Himself snapping photos, and Herself cooing at him and the Dane puppies. :lol: We then hit the comic store (Himself scored the new Thrawn novel - it's good. We both read it over the weekend - couldn't put it down. ), then Ikea. I spent Saturday assembling 3 Billys for my Studio, and yesterday tidying up. Then I assembled Herself's new craft desk. Today we started tidying HER studio......the desk in in place and already full. (What can I say - FIL had a bunch of stained glass tools. That are now ON her desk. Eventually we'll get them sorted and in the drawers....for now, we have a path into the house that doesn't involve gymnastics. :rofl:
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Looks like I'll be updating weekly, for a while anyway. :lol: Puppy pictures are IMPORTANT STUFF, y'all! I need to share the cuteness!

Duncan at 1 week old. He's now 2 lbs, 9 oz - so he's doubled his weight!

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We didn't visit this week - too much going on here. We are going THIS weekend, though - so you'll have photos that we took (these are from the breeder.)

The boys have been working on the new Studio/gym. Himself is learning how to wire up a house - good experience! He's done all the plugs on his side, and most of the plugs on the gym side. Today he has a few more to do; tonight he and SG are starting on building the panel.

Meanwhile, I've been in the Studio myself. I have another project bag completed - this one is the Swoon Harriet tote bag.

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This is the last of my MHA fabric; I got 2 complete bags out of 1 yard (plus a very, very little left over. Maybe enough to do a coin purse....) Once again, Swoon patterns show how well-written and designed they are; no major problems (well, I did sew the top inside panels in upside down, because the pattern doesn't show which way the pattern should run. No biggie - this is my new knitting bag - but next time I know which way to orient those panels. :lol:). The bag went together nicely - it only took me about 5 hours from printing the pattern to turning off the sewing machine; I did differ in my clasp. The pattern calls for a magnetic clasp; I used a turn lock instead.

The cool thing about the Harriet is the expandable sides. The bag, closed, holds an 8.5" x 11" laminated pattern, my current 2-ball sock project, the completed sock, my darning egg, and a bunch of misc. tools easily. I think I could fit a sweater project in there if I unzipped the sides.

Herself thinks she wants one of these. :lol: We'll see - today I am making a Brooklyn bag. She might just change her mind.........:rofl: (Why, yes - I am knocking out bags recently. I *need* new project bags, and a couple more purses. Plus......Mom wants a bag, and I want to give her few choices of style. Can't really do that without examples, can I? :lol:)

Gotta skitter!
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So. We are all giggly-happy over Duncan's arrival. *We* won't get him until mid-September, of course, but the breeder has been happily sharing her photos with us. Since I know y'all are only here for puppy pictures, let's start with him:

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This was the first picture she sent me. Let's all say "Daawwwwwwww...." :lol: Then came these:

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Then we made a trip to visit.....and Herself snapped this one of me and Duncan:

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There is another photo, but I am making a very silly face (I was cooing at him, all right?) so it will NOT be posted. :lol:

After we got home, this appeared in my text messages:

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Moving on before we all succumb to cuteness overload.......I spent most of yesterday in my Studio (finally!) and managed to knock out another purse:

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It's the Swoon Patterns Blanche bag. The fabric is from Spoonflower - expensive, but the ONLY place I could find My Hero Academia themed fabric. I accidentally grabbed an invisible zipper (it was the correct color!), so Uraraka is helping me with the pull. :lol:

And, finally - Herself has a new friend:

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His name is Griff; he's a Joltean (Pokemon) made by an Etsy.com artist named CrypticEnigma. He's AWESOME. Very well made, the fabric is lush and soft and nice, and the artist couldn't be nicer. (Herself has ordered 4 custom plushes from her now......:heh: She's sending up progress shots - she is SO TALENTED!)

Himself and I played a new outdoor game this AM - Recoil. Basically, laser-tag. With air strikes. He beat me handily, but it was fun.

Gotta skitter - Himself has a doc appointment, and he wants to take us out to lunch. Laters!
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This is going to be photo heavy, so be warned. :lol: I'm not going to cut it, as there's not as much traffic here, anymore, and I am tired. No sleep last night - elbow hurt, and 3 dogs in bed is too many. Anyway.

Let's begin with Miss Suki, the newest canine member of our family:

Suki Outside

Suki Sitting

She is very sweet, very smart, and very much still a puppy. Current destruction count: 3 shoes, 5 toys, and 2 wooden coat hangers.

We have somehow acquired a new rooster - he just appeared last week. We're calling him Nomad:

Nomad

The slipcovered sofa in my Studio:

Studio Slipcover

THAT was a fun project! I did it so you can still use the sleeper without having to remove the cover - THAT was interesting.

Next up - the bags I've been working on. The pattern is Swoon Bag's "Nora Doctor's Bag", in the Traveler (largest) size:

Chicken Bag Side

Chicken Bag totes

This is, of course, the bag for the Chickens (could you guess? :lol:) I LOVE the fabric! This was the first one - it's not perfect, but it's close. I LOVE it! I feel...well, I feel like this has upped my sewing game! The "totes" are actually modified purse organizers; the bag is so big inside that the meds were rolling around and I was afraid they would break. The totes don't have pockets, but they will keep the bottles all nice and tidy.


Critter Bag Side

Critter Bag inside

Critter Bag totes

This bag is for the 4-legged critters. I...OK, I don't like yellow, but I LOVE how this bag turned out! It's better than the chicken bag, not perfect, but better. I left the inside pocket out of this one - don't need it.

I liked those bags so much, I decided I NEEDED a purse. Not just ANY purse, but a STAR WARS purse:

Star Wars Bag side

Star Wars Bag Inside

It is the middle sized bag; it holds my current (non-themed) organizer perfectly. I will be making a "matching" organizer, because Why Not? :lol:

Here's a size comparison:

Bag Comparison end

Bag Comparison Side

There's 1 smaller size included in the pattern, but it was just a titch too small for the organizer. I NEED the organizer, so.....:shrug:

I have a few more bags planned, but not this pattern/style. I'm moving away from leather bags (for now), so I want to get a few more styles made up so I can alternate them and spread the wear.

I highly recommend Swoon's patterns - they are well-written, the instructions are clear, and you end up with an awesome bag!

Gotta skitter!

So. Tired!

Apr. 9th, 2018 02:11 pm
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But it's a good tired! Let's see if I can get y'all caught up.

1. Studio: Have recovered the couch in the Studio (this was a while back, but still - need to update!). It was a really....out there 60's brown/yellow/orange/brown plaid; now it's plain canvas. I also made a quilt and 4 or 5 throw pillows for it. MUCH nicer in there, now!

1a. We also got rid of "Big Ugly" - the old entertainment center I had in there. Now I have a double Billy and a single, in white. They....well. Big Ugly was 3' deep; the Billys are 15". So all the fleece is hanging out next to the loom. But! The Billy's have glass doors, and my yarn looks VERY NICE now. I can actually SEE what I have....which...well. I don't need any yarn for a while. I have enough in most weights to make almost anything. (Only 1 sweater's worth set aside; if I decide I NEED another sweater, we'll have to go shopping. But for hats/gloves/socks/scarves, I'm set.

2. Knitting: Have banged out 3 hats and a few pairs of socks. I've slowed down recently - I messed up my right elbow last month and can't do a lot without pain. :sigh: I have 2 pairs of socks on the needles, but they are stalled. No biggie - I'm sewing, instead!

3. Sewing: I joined Sew Over It's PDF club, and have taken advantage of it. I jumped on the new "Ultimate Culottes" - I have 3 pair, so far. Have plans for a few more - the goal is to get rid of my default sweat pants, and replace them with something a little more feminine. These fit the bill, at least for Spring/Summer/Fall. Have some Jeans patterns I need to work on, but right now I'm focused on Summery stuff. (It's been in the 80's...in MARCH and early APRIL. How hot is August gonna be????) Fabric Mart had a huge sale, and I scored some really nice Cotton Lawn. Already knocked out 1 SOI Vintage Shirt Dress; I have SOI's Nancy Dress (a Swing Dress) that I think will make a lovely tunic that I will tackle next. (SOI FITS me. I have to do very very little modification to their patterns, which is very very rare for me. SO NICE!)

4. Life, in general: Himself is.....better. He has developed an interest in modding Nerf blasters, thanks to the YouTube channel "Battle Universe". We've been having Family Nerf battles every Saturday evening....I am bruised, but it's fun. He still can't deal with crowds, so he stayed home yesterday while the rest of us went to Dallas Fan Expo.

FYI: IF you should decide you'd like to take your family to a Con (and have never been), might I suggest Sunday as your first visit? It's generally less crowded and a little bit cheaper. Most vendors (but not all!) are willing to slash prices so they don't have to move the stock back home. BUT.

If, say, there are more than 2 autographs you want to get, and they are BIG names, I highly recommend you spring for at least 1 Premium ticket (or VIP, but those prices are.....well. $$$$) We learned this with Mark Hamill - Sunday tickets, long lines, almost didn't get the autograph after HOURS of standing in line. For David Tennent, I did the Premium - we got 5 line jumps, so there was very little waiting.

This time......well. It was HUGE. Just some of the stars: Princess Bride Vizini, Wesley, and Humperdink; 2001 (the 2 main male characters); Back to the Future Biff, Doc Brown (Michael J. Fox and the girl had to cancel last minute, but STILL); Val Kilmer; Chuck Norris; Richard Dean Anderson; Inara from Firefly, Anthony Daniels (C3P0), Billy Dee Williams (LANDO CALRISSIAN, Oh My Goodness!!!!)...and the list honestly GOES ON (oh, Ben Afflack was there....he's a bit full of himself.). There were 9 autographs SG wanted, so -after a lot of waffling, to the point he missed the VIP pass - he went for a Premium. He decided on 4, total...and got the 3 "big" ones on Saturday. (He would have gotten some on Friday, but the guys he wanted didn't make it before he had to leave.) Sunday he got Inara's while Herself and I waited in line for the 2 SHE wanted - the English voice actors for a Japanese anime called "My Hero Acadamia". If you haven't discovered it yet....go. Go NOW. It's just started Season 3, and it's WONDERFUL. (Basically humans have evolved super hero powers, called "quirks". There are a few quirkless folks around - the main protagonist is a 14 year old quirkless boy named Midoriya. (Called "Deku"). The Number 1 Hero is All Might - and Herself LOVES them. Here, let me show you:

MHA Minis

When she found out Justin (Deku) and Chris (All Might) were going to be here, she pulled out the Sculpy and went to work. :lol: We took them with us yesterday so she could give them to the actors....who are both simply LOVELY people. Very, very, very nice and personable, and both of them were SO NICE to my out-of-her-element Aspie. :hugs: So nice, in fact, that she willingly got selfies with both:

MHA selfie - All Might

That, my friends, is Chris Sabat, voice of All Might (and Vagita from Dragonball Z). He is.....well, you can see. :lol: (She is bounding as Bonnie from FNAF. She crocheted the guitar. Yes, it's awesome. :lol:)

MHA selfie - Deku

This is Justin Briner, voice of Deku. VERY nice guy!

She is thrilled - SG bought her a print with the whole ensemble (Class 1A from the school), and both Chris and Justin signed it. If any of the other actors come thru, she'll get them to sign it, too. (Yes, *I* also have their autographs...because I really like the show, too.)

We came home with 2 new plushies for her (Oh My - 40" tall Bonnie and Chicka from FNAF. They barely fit in the car!!!), a Gjallorhorn prop from Destiny (it was a flash sale....for 75% off! Himself is looking into modding it to actually fire Nerf missiles. :lol:), a bunch of art work, and some custom-painted Nerf blasters. Oh! We also had a photo op with the Princess Bride trio - it was a hoot! It was a good day! But exhausting - today has been very laid-back.
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I was able to get some photos yesterday of Finn and Poe - here ya go! :lol:

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Finn is, of course, the gray one and Poe is the brown one. :lol: The other does STILL have not popped yet....I think they're just fat. :sigh:

Oh! As a bonus, have some pics of the newest sewing project - another SOI's Vintage Shirt Dress. This is in a nice cotton lawn; the collar is a sand washed silk.

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I learned a few things, here - cotton lawn is lucious feeling - very light, airy, and cool. Silk..is of the devil. Slippery, slick, and sticky. My machine grumbles, but will sew it IF I go slow and sandwich it between something else.

The lawn came from England (eBay - LOVE it!). I'll be ordering more - at a little over $4/yard, you really can't go wrong! The pattern is...interesting, but not Ugly, so it's good. :lol:
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So, after a few HOURS of begging, pleading, and muttering under my breath, LJ finally loaded all the pictures. So...I'd like to share what we've been doing the past few weeks. Please note, NOTHING is finished, yet. It's done enough that we can actually USE the space, but there's still a bit to be done...and let's not mention the rest of the house, OK? Because...there are boxes everywhere, and I'm going a little batty because of it.

Anyway. Without further ado, let me show the shower stall first:




Green marble, with a funky, kinda fun trim that has metal bits, glass, and ceramic tiles. It actually works with the floors, which are a dark, slate-looking vinyl. At the point this photo was taken, we hadn't installed the fixtures; they are now installed, as are the 2 vanities and sinks. Still waiting on the baseboards, and we have to attach the storage cabinet to the wall and install the medicine cabinets. :shrug: At least we have a semi-working bathroom!

Now, the bedroom:



This is the bed and (sort of) the nightstand. LOVE the bed! Cherry sleigh bed, in a King - just large enough for the 2 of us and 2 or 3 dogs. Or 1 of us, and 4 or 5 dogs - depends on which dogs decide they need the bed. :lol:



The pair of painted Ikea dressers. The paint is the same that is on the bathroom walls; it looks FANTASTIC next to the green bedroom walls. I've since put my earring tree on top of my dresser....and some dresser scarves that we got from an Antique store. It's looking pretty cozy in here, now!

This, though - this is what MAKES the room. I give you the Art Deco dressers we scored back in February:



This one's mine. It has 2 selves on either side, running front to back, and 3 rows of hanging rods. Tall enough to hang dresses and pants! LOVE it!





This is SG's. The door is off, because we discovered that it was missing some screws in the door hinges. I did get a close-up of the door; it matches the larger one. Pretty sure this was sold as a set - the pattern and hardware is the same. They are beautiful, and in remarkably good condition considering their age. I'm thinking 1940's.....maybe '30's, but not sure. They are LOVELY!



Here's a close-up of the door hardware. Both are identical, and, again, look original.

Now, WHY did we spring for armoires, when we have a closet? Because...the closet is 5' x 5'. It's barely large enough for 1, forget about 2 people. The closet is now the "overflow" - mostly SG's stuff. We tore out the built-in system, shoved the gun cabinet in there, and the 2 shoe cabinets. It's tight, but....it works. All my garb is in bins on the shelves (or in the cedar chest) - the armoires were actually needed to fit all our clothes in. And they add to the retro vibe I wanted in the room. (House, actually - I'm working on it. The kitchen is sort of retro-modern farm. :lol:)

So, that's what we've been up to lately. I have a LOT of cleaning and reorganizing to do! And....I'll be throwing out a LOT of stuff. Living without it for the past 5 months has shown me that I don't NEED all the crap I have....so, I guess that's a good thing. :lol:

Enjoy your day!

ETA: H, I know wool is water-resistant, but...it's New! And I don't wanna get it messed up! :lol:

Also, thanks for reminding me to look at Fabric Mart - I am a member of their swatch club, but I didn't think to go there. And then....they are currently having a 60% off wool suiting sale....I fell down. Himself found a gray that was "close enough"...so I grabbed 15 yards. :oops: :lol:
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but LJ is being slow as molasses this morning. It took *30* minutes to upload 2.....and I have 6 or 7 more. :sigh: I guess you get to see the new dress only, instead of the house. Which is NOT finished, but is much, much closer!

Anyway.

Dress! This is the Sew Over It Vintage Shirt Dress:

2017 SOI Shirtdress front

2017 SOI Shirtdress side

It was very windy yesterday, so the photos aren't the best, but you can at least get an idea of the dress. I did NOT wear the jacket - it was threatening rain, and I will not risk that! :lol:

So, house. Monday the last of the new floors went in. Yesterday the plumbers came in and did the Master Bath, and repaired the pipe SG put a hole in, and re-installed the water filter (they removed it to repair the garage leak) - when SG hit the pipe, he flooded the (NEW!) bathroom. I told them to cut the water, they did - at the house, which re-routed the water into the (missing) water filter. Which flooded the garage. :sigh: It's all sorted, now. Still not DONE, of course - my NSDH has problems prioritizing things. Which is why the pasture got mowed, but the baseboards didn't get painted until 10 minutes before the plumbers showed up. They had to wait on HIM.....never mind. Suffice to say things still aren't done, but the pasture looks good.

Oh! One of the other pictures was of 8 new chicks - we have 2 broody hens. 1 is a nasty banty hen, so Herself pulled all the chicks. The other is sweet, but batty stole her hatchlings....so they're in the Garage Studio, as well.

I will try to upload again later - I'm not sure if it's on my end (storms right now) or LJ's. I'm pleased with the way things are looking; the armoires fit and look really, really good.

Gotta go get school sorted - later!
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one I've had since 1977. May, 1977. :squee!:

You see, this weekend was Dallas Fan Expo........and the Special Guest was Mark Hamill. A few months ago, the very day I got the email, SG came home with a Propel X-Wing drone for me.....and my reaction? "Ohhhh! I could get Mark to SIGN IT!". And I did. :lol:

Herself made him a little Luke out of polyclay, and was brave enough to walk with me to hand it to him. He said "Freebies! I like Freebies!", she said "I made it!"...and he was surprised. He said it will go on his shelf, and the dogs for a 10 mile radius all cocked their heads in wonder at the super-sonic squeeing going on. :lol:

Here, have some photos:

Little Luke front

Little Luke sitting

Little Luke back

Little Luke sitting 2

It was worth the 2 hours we spent standing in line.

I am tired and footsore, but we had fun......and I got to meet my childhood crush! :rofl:
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We went to visit FIL yesterday; not only did he love my Betty, I got complimented by a total stranger, too! I had Herself take some photos while we were at FIL's, so I guess I'll do a proper review:

The pattern is Sew Over It's "Betty" Dress, based on a 1950's design. I sewed a straight 18, even though my measurements put me in a 16 (more on that in a minute). Because they are a UK company, I had to get the pdf version and print it at home (then use 2 full tape dispensers to assemble it.)

I had a few issues with the print out. The first few rows went together perfectly; the last few.....not so much. Since I trace off my size, it was no big deal - I simply moved the tracing paper to ensure everything was lined up. The sizes are well marked, and easy to trace/cut.

The instructions were clear. No photos, but good line drawings of the steps. I had a few problems - I can't do under stitching very well - need practice), and turning the facing and bodice right side out and sewing up the seams....was difficult. I ended up ripping and hand-sewing the small openings left for turning right-side out. MY problems - not the pattern's!

Anyway. I first traced off the 16, then pin-fit it to Kate. It didn't fit - the front was about 0.5" off center, and the back seam was about 1" off...making it approx. 3" too narrow. :scratches head: So, I went back, traced off the 18, and whipped up a muslin.

The muslin - which I sewed up in a thin muslin - still appeared to be a bit tight, but I just couldn't see going up 1 more size, so I soldiered on. You saw the almost finished dress on Kate, but now - I give you the finished dress:

Betty Dress front

Betty Dress Side

Betty dress back

It's a little too loose - the pattern description says it's supposed to be close-fitting, and nip in the waist. Mine.....is loose. I can pinch a good 2" out of the waist (should have trusted the measurements!), and about 1" - 2" out of the bust. The shoulders are a bit broad - I pinned them to my bra straps to both hide the straps AND help hold them up.

All that being said, I LOVE this dress! It's comfy, it's cool, and it's perfect for the upcoming summer heat. And the skirt is all twirly-whirly! :lol:

I have a few more planned. I'm trying to get my hands on the add-on pack (sleeves and different necklines) so I can change it up, but the original is hard to beat. I *think* I'm going to retrace the bodice; do the 16 for the neck and shoulders, blending to an 18 under the arm, then blending back to the 16 from the bust dart to the waist. I'll sew up the fashion fabric, to see how it fits - that way I'm only out maybe 1 yard if it doesn't fit right. :lol:

The plumber AND the concrete guys showed up today. The hole is GONE! And the Master Bath has been demolished. Tomorrow AM the new tub will be set in place, and the water pipes moved...then I get to paint and tile. Fun times!!
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I've promised photos for.....well, quite some time now. So, it's high time I actually DELIVERED, right? Right. :lol: There's a lot, so I'll put them behind a cut.

Click here for photos! )
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because, even though the kitchen is NOT finished, I am in LOVE with it and can't wait to share!

This is the side with the dishwasher. This is where my Fiestaware will live (probably in the middle cabinet - I want to be able to see the pretty, pretty colors!).

2017 kitchen dishwasher side

This is the range side - look at that lovely range hood! The microwave will eventually be on the countertop, but not for at least a week.

2017 kitchen range side

And....my Sink. My Lovely, Lovely, Beautiful, HUGE sink. I asked SG to please beg, borrow, or steal a baby so I could wash it in my lovely, very large sink. :lol:

2017 kitchen sink

Seriously, the sink is sitting on a 36" wide cabinet. Let me say that again - the sink is sitting on a *3 foot wide* cabinet. The counters are 25" deep, and the sink goes all the way to the back. And it's approximately 7.5" deep. Double basin. BEAUTIFUL. :happy dance: :God is SO GOOD!:

:deep breath: We still have a bit of work to do. We need to put a bit of trim along the countertop back edge - we had a row of ceramic bull-nose there, before, but that doesn't look as nice with the butcher block. We have a LOT of leftover facing trim (laminate) that we are seriously considering using - we put a couple of pieces up, and it looks good (and the contractor was impressed with it). We need to put the bar on on (we have another piece of the butcher block that will be used for that) and we need to plumb the sink and dishwasher (we already have the faucet, but have to wait on the plumber. Who is supposed to be here today.) Oh - and we are going to tile the rest of the way up to the range hood.

The butcher block needs to be oiled daily for a week, then 1x/week for a month, then 1x/month as needed. It will need more upkeep than laminate would, but it's SO PRETTY! And - if I had hit it with a polycrylic finish, it would be done, but I opted to go with a food-safe option: mineral oil. Hence the regular upkeep. (I knew that before I ordered it - I decided the upkeep was worth the look and beauty of the wood.)

I am beyond pleased with our contractors, too. Traemand usually does NOT install odd-shaped countertops, because it's hard to fit angles that deviate from 90*. WE got lucky (Thank God!) - the lead installer just happened to be a Cabinet-maker in a previous life. (Again - Thank God!) He looked at it, said, "well...we aren't supposed to do this, but let me call my boss. *I* can do it." His boss said "IF they don't mind you possibly messing up (we didn't!), then Go For It." - and he did. And he did a BEAUTIFUL job - the corners at the sink are just gorgeous. (That sounds funny, to be so excited over wooden corners, but guys - it's as perfect as can be. And the kitchen is just SO LOVELY, I could squee!)

The bottoms are all drawers. The ones on the dishwasher/sink side all have a hidden, 3rd drawer that is deep enough for silverware. The uppers are standard cabinets - I tried to maximize the storage in here. I used to have a portable island in there....I am hoping that I have added enough usable storage that I won't need one. :fingers crossed: We are also going to replace the double range with a single that has storage on the bottom - that'll help, too. Plus...I will be weeding heavily when the boxes come back in. I.....want to declutter and simplify. (NOT my Fiestaware though! :lol:) While I've missed a lot of things, there's others that honestly? I can live without.

I'll get more photos when we actually get it finished, but I couldn't wait to show off this beautiful, beautiful kitchen. And to give a shout-out to Ikea and Traemand - I have a beautiful kitchen that was quite affordable!
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Because I need to send pics to my SIL, I decided to upload them here, too - that way y'all can see what's been sucking up all my time the past few months. I did them in CollegeIt!, so...they're not the best, but they save bandwidth and storage space.

First up, let's do Herself's bedroom. The top pic is how it was when we moved in, way back in 2003. She had chosen the pink.....:shudder:

2017 House C's Bedroom

We don't have all her stuff moved back in - the insurance is paying folks to do that, so we only moved in the essentials, but you get the idea. What you don't see here is her new aquarium; she has had a 20 gallon tank forEVER; yesterday we went and upgraded it to a 60 gallon tank. MUCH bigger - her fish will be much happier. She set it up last night and will be moving Mr. Bubbles sometime today. (And if possible we'll be buying him a tank mate soon.) The 60 gallon tank was on sale for the same price as the 36 gallon; both were almost full setups.....it just made more sense to go bigger, since it was the same price and I'd need to replace the filter pump and gravel anyway. The stand is very nice, and sturdy - and she has room to store all the extras now.

Anyway - moving on. This set is the kids' original bath. Sorry for the crap photos - I had a cheap digital camera and it went yellow sometimes. Also, the walls were sponge-painted blue to resemble water - you can see that in the photo where the sink has been ripped out.


2017 House Kids bath before

And - now! It looks like a totally different house, doesn't it? Himself says it feels like either an upscale hotel or a very rich relative's house. :lol:

2017 kids' bath after

Himself's room is painted, but not set up yet - he wants to wait until ALL his stuff can go in. :sigh: My kitchen is on it's way - I got the tracking info last night. :bounce: Yes, there will be more photos! I'm especially happy with the Music room....we picked up new curtains and a rug yesterday, and ordered a chair. And a new bedroom set for us.....SG wants to upgrade the house. I'm thinking I should let him....:rofl: We'll be paying off the mortgage next week......mortgage-burning party to follow. :snicker:
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Because I have a LOT of photos, I made a college. Kinda sucks, but hey - it's photos! :lol:

2017 january Knit Projects

This is all the stuff I've knit and finished in January. The socks were started....in late September, but all the rest was started and finished in January. What can I say? Stress knitting at it's finest! Also, all the January stuff is knit in worsted weight yarn - which is thicker than my beloved sock weight, and knits up faster.

I am in the midst of another set of fingerless mitts......my kitchen can't be finished soon enough! I'd like to knit something...smaller. Like socks. Right now, though, I can't get to my ball winder, so I have to knit with yarn that comes in ready-to-knit packages. :shrug: I can always use another hat or two or three....:rofl: Especially "fashion" hats like the cloches - they're warm, and cute, and give me options. As do the 2 new geeky hats.....Star Wars and Dr. Who for the win!

Back to the knitting.......beats painting. Which I did yesterday - the kitchen has been redone AGAIN. I....liked the aqua-isa blue, but I didn't love it. It's now a nice Federal/French blue...and I LOVE it. It's a bit dark right now, but once the white cabinets go in it'll pop.

Have a great one!
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so let's make it a good one, right? :lol:

So. I had a lot of plans for 2016. The big one, for me, was to get my house in order and set up routines so I could keep it neat and tidy(ish). I actually succeeded in this, but not by my own skills. :lol: No, seriously - I have to count this as a win - my house is currently almost empty, which means, from a certain point of view, it's tidy. :rofl: NOT what I had in mind, but hey - it works, right?

Have some photos:

This is what's left of the kids' bathroom:

kids bathroom sink gone

kids bathroom tub gone

I'm kinda bummed that the murals got ruined, but also relieved. I've wanted to update the bathroom for a while, but Herself can't handle change. This, however - there was no way to save them, and I can't match the colors - I mixed them as I painted each fish. :sigh: So.....the drywall has mostly been replaced. The tub has 1 piece of hardiboard; SG stopped to fiddle with the over-the-mirror light. :sigh: Hey - at least the tub is in, right?

He stopped the kitchen to do the bathroom:

kitchen dishwasher side

kitchen oven side

The top cabinets over the dishwasher are almost empty; the other side...they aren't. It won't take long to empty them....I'm just not really in the mood right now. I got a bit depressed yesterday as we packed up all my Fiestaware. :sigh:

I KNOW things will get better. I KNOW I'll end up with a practically new house....but it's still hard. And I'm looking at going into the New Year with a house all topsy-turvy....NOT what I wanted to do. Ah, well...this too shall pass.

it is, however, the main reason I've lost my happiness. I'm normally happy - being happy is, for neuro-normal people, a *choice* - but now? I'm finding it difficult. Once the floors are in and I can see progress, it'll be easier - but right now? It's hard. :sigh:

Anyway - hope y'all have a Happy New Year! May 2017 be MUCH better than 2016!

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