Each Day…

May I always strive for the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
have the courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

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Finish the Year

I tend to start a lot of projects, and then once they are nearing completion, I let them languish. I have unfinished projects of all types stashed away. Gretchen Ruben, in a recent podcast, suggested having a theme for Christmas and I liked that idea, so I have chosen a simple one.

That theme inspired me to have a project theme as well. So, I’ve decided to “Finish the Year”. All those projects that are sitting around 1/2, 2/3, 3/4, 99/100 done, I will finish by December 30. An easy fun project is my train case, which I plan to use within the next few weeks as I have a few over-nights. It’s been sitting with the lining ripped out for about a year.

I recently decided to go and buy the fabric for the lining and when I went to look at it to determine how much I needed, I discovered I’d already bought the fabric. It’s almost done now, and ready to be used. I’ll post a picture when it’s complete.,Another large project that has been sitting since late last spring is my big lounge chair.

After I got it, I immediately sewed the cushion covers. Then, because the prospect of pulling so many staples was daunting, it sat looking very ugly for a long time. My husband offered to give me a hand this week, and we moved the project forward by a lot. Just another hour of stapling should complete the chair.

Lounge chair recover

And, of course, there is a partially completed ‘sideways’ sweater on my knitting machine. It took some math to figure out the shaping, so of course, that made the whole thing grind to a halt. Please, someone, diagnose me with dyscalculia so I have a legitimate excuse. There’s more, of course–but I am going to Finish the Year. I will not start any new projects until the WIPs are done. Wish me luck.  Winking smile

The Lando Report and Other Doings

Lando is still with us. He’s feeling quite comfortable here I think. Sammy seems to be getting along with him very well. They play, nap, play some more, nap. They’re certainly giving us lots of entertainment.

I haven’t been doing a lot of making lately. At this time of year, I like to be outside as much as possible when the weather is good. Some of that time is spent reading (while watching the antics of the dogs).  My reading list lately looks like this:

  • The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin
  • Why We Sleep, by Matthew Walker PhD
  • The Building of Celebration House, by Annette Drake
  • A History of Courtship by Tania O’Donnell
  • Push Not the River and Against a Crimson Sky  by James Conroyd Martin
  • The First Americans by John David Cross
  • Make Your Bed by William H. McRaven
  • 1215 and All That by Ed West
  • The Queen’s Governess by Karen Harper
  • The Gilded Age by Milton Rugoff

Goodness! I just realized making this list how many books I’ve read in the last month or so.

 

Here’s another look at our little Lando friend.

 

 

 

 

The Lando Report – May 8, 2018

Last Friday night, while a vicious wind storm whipped the south end of the province we drove down the highway to Toronto to pick up a weary traveller. Orlando is about a year old and he had left a shelter in Texas and headed to Ontario along with about a half-dozen others, Jack Russell and Rat Terrier crosses, that had been slated for euthanisia. Some of the dogs had been refugees from Hurricane Harvey. Others, like Orlando, were down on their luck and clearly running out of options.

Luckily, the Ontario Rat and Jack Russell Terriers were able to secure them, and Thursday morning, they began the long journey north on what’s been described as the underdog railway. The pups were handed off about 12 times before becoming Canadians and finally reaching their destination. On this side of the border, several families opened their homes to foster these dogs until permanent homes are found.

Lando has been with us for barely three days now. We’ve had him to the vet and all seems to be well with his health. He got his flea/tick/heartworm medication, which is a must for all dogs from southern areas where these problems are greater than they are here. His foster brother, our dog Sammy Sam loves him (so far).

I understand how many dogs were left homeless when hurricanes hit. But how some, including our Sammy, also from the lower states, and now Lando end up in shelters baffles me. Both of these dogs are absolute delights. They are sweet, smart and so much fun to have around. The temptation is to keep Lando–I’m going to cry when he leaves, but I feel smaller, much more submissive Sammy needs another dog more his temperament and body type. Ultimately, it will be Sammy’s decision as to what dog, if any, finds a permanent home with us. For now, Lando will stay until the rescue is sure he’s ready to go to his forever home. And we are proud foster parents, loving every minute of the experience.

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The End of January? Already?!

Whaaat?! It’s January 30th? How did that month go by so quickly? One month of winter down, who knows how many to go. It’s been mild enough that we have lost most of the snow that fell earlier on. It got bitterly cold, and then the temperatures shot up well above freezing. I didn’t even get out to skate on the little rink they built here in the village. Now the weather has turned again and winter clearly hasn’t gone away.

But, I have been busy, which is why the time has gone so fast. I’m doing less writing and more making. I recently completed the Burda Sewing Instructors Certification. So that meant sewing, sewing and sewing. I also realized my wardrobe was woefully lacking warm winter clothes. So I stocked up on fleece and made myself warm pajama pants, fleecy leggins and a few fleece tops. My favourite so far has been a hooded tunic from Burda pattern #101C.

burda_teaching_stamp purple

I’ve also been paper crafting a bit. Valentine’s Day is coming and I’ve decorated my Valentine’s twig. I was also asked to make a couple of cards.

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This card gave me a chance to try a watercolor technique I saw a long time ago using a simple wash for the background and then layering with vellum. I like the way it turned out although I’d cut the trees in the background differently next time so they don’t look like they’re on a cliff.

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This was simple and fun to make and used up a bit of burlap ribbon I had. The picture is a photo I took several years ago and edited to for a sepia look.

On quite another track,  if you’re into planner stickers, here’s are some horse themed ones I came across by a talented maker named Victoria Thatcher. Check out her Horses stickers. She also shares lots of other great themes. I thought the whole planner sticker thing was silly and really resisted trying one out. But, now I’m mildly addicted. I’ve turned into a sticker and gold star kid again.

 

2018 Starts With Socks

Happy New Year! I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and are looking forward to 2018. I’ve decided to abandon the news feeds, uninstall Facebook and Twitter apps from my phone, and concentrate on what’s important to me–making stuff. I have several ‘almost done’ sewing projects on the go. All are for the Burda Certified Instructor’s course I am taking.

But, I decided to take a quick break and sew up some socks. It’s winter and my feet are cold. And, because I am taller than average most “knee socks” come up to about mid-calf.  I haven’t mastered making socks on my knitting machine. So the Jalie pattern for stretch fleece socks looked like a sewn alternative.

Socks made with Jalie Pattern
Sammy is amazed at how easy my socks were to make and how nicely they fit, even though they are a poopy colour.

This was an almost instant gratification project–less than an hour to cut and sew. The hardest part was finding the right textile. I was able to find 4-way stretch fabric on sale for $3 a meter–not the colors I’d like, but certainly suitable for my experiment with the Jalie sock pattern I purchased. I know it’s a little strange to become euphoric about socks, but I am over the moon about these. They were so simple to sew, and with a slight alteration of the pattern, I have knee socks that actually come up to my knee. I’m not sure how they’ll feel inside boots, as there are seams around the foot. But around the house, these will be perfect. As soon as my assignments are finished, I’ll be sewing more of these.