Thursday, August 29, 2013

Picture of the Week

I've written a post every day. Apparently, that's only happened in my mind. We're back to Thursday, so I thought I'd share a quaint little thing I did back when my kids were babies. When Laura was born way back in 1987, someone (my mom?) gave us a Polaroid camera, and it was decided (a request perhaps?) that I would send both my mom and mother-in-law a "picture of the week". Oh, and then I would mail these pictures.

Quaint, right? In this day of digital photography, I suspect grandparents are now inundated with photos on facebook, instagram, and in their email inbox on a daily basis.

But, you know, back in the old days, we had this stuff called film that had to be developed and frankly, sometimes you just didn't know what you were getting. The first commercial "instant" camera was unveiled in 1948, so they had been around for awhile. One of the great things about these pictures, is that the frame around them can be written on.

Anyway, last year, I brought home my mother's collection, and scanned them, primarily to preserve them. Some were fading quite a bit. And now, on throwback Thursday, I'm going to share one of them. Yep, just one.

On this day in 1989, Laura was taking a train ride in Wheaton Regional Park in Wheaton, Maryland, not far from our house. She's wearing an adorable shorts outfit, that I made her. Those objects in the cotton print are cows.

Hope you had a wonderful Thursday today and back in 1989!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Throw Back Thursday

I bet y'all know all about this "throw back Thursday". It's all over the twitterverse, instagram and facebook. Don't know when or how it started, but hey! Better late than never. Today is the perfect day for me to start because yesterday, I spent a little time scanning slides. What?

I have the Epson Perfection V330 Photo scanner that I bought a couple of years ago to easily scan the pattern envelopes for my Etsy shop. It's great! I highly recommend it. Of course, you would now have to buy the newer model. The scanner also came with this weird little holder device thingie which, if used correctly, scans slides (positive film) and negatives. I haven't given it a test run of the negatives, but even if doing moderately correctly, does a great job of scanning the slides. Like when you have the slide in the projector and the words are backwards and upside down... if you only guess when you put the slides in the thingie, sometimes your scans come out that way too.

Here's what the thingie looks like:
The long, narrow part on the left is where you would put a negative in.

And, if it has been decades that you took any photos with slide film, this is what might turn up (the first 2 had what appeared to be a 1985 date stamp on the frame):

What? Something you would now delete if you were using a digital camera! Unretouched, by the way.

 Elliott (I think). Photo only cropped.

And finally, a stray slide that I scanned, with a 1970 date stamp, truly a throwback!

It appears to be me on the left, but I do not remember that jacket or that haircut, and you think you might remember something like that. It is definitely my sister on the right. Those are some groovy sunglasses!

It takes about 4 minutes to scan 4 slides, so this isn't a super quick process, but the discovery is fun. Unless I unearth a few more boxes of slides, I only have about 5 more rolls to scan.

Have a great Thursday!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Avocado Project - Still Growing

I'm a little behind in the avocado update, and there has been some significant growing!! Buck was ready to plant when we last left the little seedlings, and look at him now:
Apologies for the lack of focus... my cell phone camera apparently doesn't view the tall, skinny stick as a worthy focal point. Apparently, according to HGTV and this post, I have actually done it wrong. I quote:

Here’s how to start:
  1. Remove the large pit (seed) from inside an avocado, rinse well, and dry (a wet seed will be slippery!).
  2. Push three or four toothpicks into the seed at its widest part so that you can suspend the pit over a glass of water with the pointy end sticking up. The water should cover about an inch of the seed.
  3. Put in a warm place and make sure to maintain the water level.
  4. In 2-6 weeks, roots and a stem will sprout from the seed. When the stem is about six inches long, trim it in half.
  5. When the stem leafs again, transplant the seedling to a pot with loose, sandy soil. Plant the seedling root down, leaving the top half of the pit sticking out of the soil.
  6. Give your plant frequent, light watering and keep it in a sunny place to encourage growth.
  7. Pinch back the newest top leaves every time the stems grow another six inches or so to encourage more growth and a fuller plant.
- See more at:

Yep, I totally missed step 4. I think I'll carry on, but perhaps for one of the Austins I will actually follow the above steps.

Ah, but what about the Austins? The first Austin is proceeding at an astonishingly glacial pace with only minimal visual markers to give us any optimism at all.

Honestly, I'm kinda ready to just chuck this one, but I'll give it a couple more weeks.

Austin2 is showing more progress, but then he started out progressing in fruito, as it were.
I've never seen one with a double root, so that's cool. And the crack is large enough that the stem development is also quite interesting. Something that would be great for kids to watch. Besides plant growth, it would be quite a lesson in patience.

Monday, August 19, 2013

A New Style of Posting

Hi Friends! Not quite sure where to begin, so I'll just jump right in. You may have noticed less sewing posts. I mentioned some "fitness goals", and those goals are still on the table. But really, my life has taken a new trajectory at the moment, and for me, working full time means way less sewing. I'm not sure if it's an exhaustion thing, or a lack of desire thing what with having to wear only black at work, but I'm just not feeling it.

(For the record, a phrase that you won't ever read here is sewing mojo. I don't mind reading it in, but for whatever reason, it does kind of give me the heebie jeebies. While I'm at it, you also won't see me substitute the word "sew" for "so". No criticism of those who do, but it's just not for me.... ok, back to the post.)

So if you come here just for the sewing posts, which from a critic's standpoint had actually become more of a "here is what I made" rather than a "here is the process", you'll be out of luck. There will definitely still be some sewing posts, but just not as frequently.

But, there will be posts on the avocado project (still going strong--update soon), other creative outlets, vintage sewing patterns (still selling 'em), life in general, and the wedding industry specifically (my opinion of it, at least).

Oh, yeah... I'm still reading your blogs, too, admittedly in more of a lurking style than participatory.

Bottom line... the goal here is to post more often because sometimes there is just stuff I gotta write about, but the content will be broader. I will try to label appropriately (wink!). I would love your feedback and comments!

Have a great Monday!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

A Little Knitting

Thanks for the fitness goal encouragement. That little "project" is coming along. And thanks for the other sewing suggestions... I'm not opposed to sewing for others, and actually have something planned for my mom that she requested a little later this year. And home dec... my home is pretty much "dec-ed" out right now. I actually don't mind "recharging" breaks from sewing, as I have other creative outlets.

I've done a little messing around with painting and drawing. No real talent to speak of, but sometimes I just have to paint. Kind of weird.

The other creative outlet that I enjoy is knitting. I would still classify myself as maybe an advanced beginner, and am not really interested in knitting garments for myself. And my mom keeps me well supplied with scarves... I have more than enough for the warm climate in which I live. I do see myself knitting for babies (when the time comes). And I like knitting toys. Go figure.

My primary source for toy patterns is the book Itty-Bitty Toys by Susan B. Anderson, and I've shown off some earlier creations. Click on her name and you can see lots that she creates... not just the toys.

Last year I started the sock monkey, and then put him down, about 90% finished. So I finished him. I really did a terrible job on him, and didn't add his hair because I couldn't figure out the instructions, and really couldn't be bothered. But here he is, in all his weird glory.
So ugly that he's kind of cute, right? Maybe not. Anyway, I'm knitting something else right now that I'll be taking on a little semi-spontaneously planned beach vacation. Hopefully that little creation will turn out a bit more successfully.

And if you want to see some really fantastic "itty-bitty toys" knitted by a fellow sewing blogger, check out Clio's blog!


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