Friday, October 31, 2014


Happy Halloween everyone!

You would think that given how crazy this month has felt to me--I'm sure it has come through here--that last night would have me in a sewing frenzy. But aside from adding velcro to panda girl's belt, I had no sewing after 8pm! Everyone was super pleased with their costumes. the puppy even mentioned that she thinks she wants to wear her "new jacket" on days besides halloween. They left this morning, decked out--worrying about if they would be the only ones dressed up. It is raining (and cold) I drove them today (something I rarely do) and we saw at least 2 other kids dressed up. You'd think that would help, but no--both were boys which--no matter how nice the boy--all boys are YUCKO (unless they aren't if you know what I mean).

here's the public picture so you can see the costumes.
Halloween 2014

So does someone care to explain to me how ALL of October was above average temperatures and less rainy than usual and today--the ONLY day that really counts for weather--it is cold rainy and going to snow? Is this just some cruel trick? Would it be sunny and 70 if I had not busted my butt on costumes?

Yesterday was all about the accessories. I had bought enough "fake shiny leather" to make boot covers, gauntlets, a mask and a belt. She ended up wearing her boots, and since she had on a black shirt (for panda arms duh) she didn't need the gauntlets. I did make the belt, choosing to rebel against the instructions and instead of fusing together the fake leather and some lining fabric (Oh the yards of back scraps I still have from last year's Harry Potter robe!), I chose two pieces of leather, sewn together and turned inside out. Um yeah--don't do that. And it looked funny, so I started to do it their way--and started ripping out my seam, when suddenly the point in the belt popped and wham-o--it looked like it was supposed to! Right as I needed to leave for work.

When I got home, I sewed it back up (Top stitched all the way around) and done! Then the mask. I did the mask the way the instructions said (sort of--I fused the webbing to the lining first instead of the leather first) and fused those together, and topstitched. I wasn't sure how my glasses wearing kid was going to wear it, but I thought--what if I make the eye openings as big as her lenses? So I did that--tracing around her glasses. She was thrilled because the mask fit right UNDER her glasses. So she could wear both and see!

I must confess that ever since puppy girl told me she needed "a headband with a bow and ears" I have been wondering how on earth we were going to pull it off. First, she hates headbands. Second, how do you attach ears to a headband? But in true rubber meets the road fashion--I had a brain spark. What if they were all on hair clips? The year panda girl was medusa, I had bought all these hair clips. Amazon calls them "duck bill clips" I called them something else. I had a whole sentence about it--then googled to get a picture, and lets just say I called them something that was slang for old lady porn. Don't go there.

ANYWAY, I couldn't find any of those around the house, and I was out for lunch around Michael's and decided to pop in to see if they had pink ribbon for the bow, and they had those duck clips! After I got home, I cut out some ears (I HATE that fabric can I be done with it NOW), and started playing with adhesives. Soon, I had two ears glue gunned to duck clips! The bow got wired on to a third and then we had puppy!


Halloween also brings us to the end of October, which means time for goal check in, and new November goals. But I don't really have big November goals and I'm thinking it will be boring to both write and read if every day I write--todays goals: get 10k steps, declutter, plank, hang out and read. Yesterday: I accomplished all that! Because I don't have big projects--I'm not knitting gifts this year, I thought I'd just write when I had things I was working on--hopefully more often than I did before September--but not every day.

I do have some projects though--I have some Christmas PJs I promised to help with (I haven't forgotten!), that I'm excited about. And I have some other sewing projects--a quilt one of the girls started, more pjs for us and all that Halloween fabric gave me ideas for barbie clothes! I mean, how crazy are you when you are sewing a costume and you think--would barbie look liek a hooker if I made her leather pants? Hey, you know who needs leather pants? KEN! Pretty crazy. Also--wouldn't barbie look gorgeous in a evening gown that had a leather bodice and a fun fur skirt? See, CRAZY!

Dont worry, I have no pattern for Ken clothes.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

October 30!

I see the light that is the end of the October tunnel. Tomorrow is Halloween,and kids are wearing their costumes to school. So theoretically by this time tomorrow--all will be done. Theoretically.

Yesterday I finished the tutu! Somehow, I had it in my head that I only needed 5 yards of tulle, so I bought 4 yards of pink, and a yard of a darker sparkly pink. I shoved them in a bag and dealt with other stuff. Then, I went researching no-sew tutus and many of them said--start with 10 yards of tulle. um TEN YARDS?! Well, I remembered I had 5, so buy 5 more right? So I went to Joann's and bought some (50% off--I got "shiny" tulle), I thought would be the same as the light pink. However, I didn't actually remember the light pink was light. So yep, I ended up with three different pinks for the tutu. BUT, that ended up being a really good thing--it added a depth that looks fabulous! Even in a blurry picture:

Oh and ten yards of tulle? WAY too much. But to be fair, 5 yards would have been a little skimpy. I do have enough to make a smaller tutu that will look just as fabulous.

Also yesterday, I finished the hooks for the panda girl cape, and started thinking about her belt. I did talk her into her winter boots, so that's one less thing to make.
In case you are keeping track, that means I need 1 belt, and 2 puppy ears.

Yesterday I was really bad about my big three. I didn't plank (went to yoga though and tried really hard to do the vinyasas correctly instead of my usual flop on my belly move), I didn't declutter (I have a PLAN for that tulle!) and just barely got my 10k steps (like pacing before bed for the last 200!).

Today, I will do better. Today I will get the halloween costumes DONE. Today I will get all three of the big three. And tomorrow? Tomorrow I will get halloween pictures BEFORE school.

One last thing, my husband often complains that halloween has become almost as stressful as Christmas, what with all the expectations. The costumes, the pumpkins, the decorating! All too much! And part I think of what feels stressful is the lack of advanced planning. I hate rushing to get costumes done. However, I was reminded of why I go through this every year.
We had dress rehearsal. We put on the costumes so we could make sure the parts are all fitting and working together (and get the cape hooked on straight). Both girls separately put on their costumes and said--OH WOW! I LOVE this! I look GREAT! The Awe in their voices, the joy in their expressions... that's worth it.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

October 29

Yesterday was the last day of the five days of black and white photos. It makes me a little sad because there were several things I liked about this challenge. First, it made me get the camera out and take more photos. I mean you can't find one good photo if you don't take at least one photo. Second, it made me think about contrast in ways I don't usually think. So, for example, the beautiful fall colored scene out my window looks not just muted in black and white, but monochrome. And last, I figured out that my camera has a setting to take black and white photos, so I didn't do much post processing. I'm a pretty SOOC (Straight out of the camera) person. I will crop, and sometimes brighten, but I hate fiddling with that stuff. I'd rather take 40 pictures and find one that looks decent. My style was made for digital cameras I think.

I also got all of my big three done, pulling in 11k steps, planking 3 sets--one of 35, and 2 of 30, and putting one string of bat lights in the donate bin. I hung two outside and realized that the outside outlet isn't working, so I may actually get rid of another string of bat lights--I have 4 and this is the first year I've hung them.

I didn't sew at all. I didn't start on the tutu either. I did vacuum up the fuzz in the sewing room (And a piece of fabric and maybe broke my basement vacuum). Oh wait, that's not right--I hand sewed. I got eyes for the cape sewn on the dress (or at least one shoulder--I need her to try it on to get the placement for the other--and hand sewed down the edges of the panda girl logo--because I'm terrible with fusibles.

Today, the tutu gets made. I have the elastic cut--all I need to do is cut and tie the tulle. Also the fitting for the panda girl costume, so I can finish the hooks and eyes for the cape.
I am skipping the last farmers market of the year, but going to yoga. I have a lunch date with my husband too! But the theme of the day is definitely tulle.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

October 28

Yesterday I did an amazing thing--I finished the poodle jacket. Did you hear that? I FINISHED THE POODLE JACKET! Granted I only had to put in a zipper to call it done, but I had to buy the zipper.

So funny story with this--I measured for the zipper--24 inches, went to Joann's, found a 24 inch separating zipper, brought it home, realized upon laying the zipper out that while yes, one side of the jacket is 24 inches, the other is only 22. Yep, I'm just that great of a seamstress! Let's just say we went with 22, and some hems got added. So that added a few layers, because I also had to trim the zipper--so that meant making a new zipper stop.

I also realized that a while ago I decluttered my patterns and got rid of the one with instructions for making a non-sew tutu. Some people would say--see don't ever throw things away you might need! I say--Google! At any rate, I have a ton of tulle, and a plan for making a pink tutu (and possibly wrist and ankle tutus.

It probably goes without saying that I did my 10K steps, planked and de-cluttered. But I feel like saying it because--I didn't run. I wanted to stick around until my parents left, but by the time they did--it was 10am, and I just lost my will to run. I cleaned bathrooms, showered, did 5 loads of laundry, the above sewing and many other odds and ends (Oh yeah started chapter 8!)

Today, aside from the big three (and my volunteer shift at school--done!), I want to get tulle cut out for the tutu. I didn't measure any elastic on the girl before she went to school, so I really can't do the whole thing. I also need to look at panda girl's belt and mask and boots. I told her I'd at least get the belt, but it would be nice to have the whole thing. I have to work a few hours today though AND run to meijer, so we'll see what happens.

OH! And cupcakes part 2 maybe. See my girls are twins, and they do some activities together--including this book club. Last week panda girl offered to bring the cupcakes I mentioned, so then I thought phew, I don't have more of those to do--but then it turns out this week is poodle girl's turn to bring treats! Really? two weeks in a row? I could do cupcakes again (if I buy a cake mix and cupcake liners while I am out), or I could do something else--but the club is tomorrow, so I need to do it today--with no guidance from the girl.

My entry in yesterday's black and white was one of panda girl--who then turned the camera on me after 20 or so shots. I like this one she got of me--even if it wasn't one of my "official" entries.


Monday, October 27, 2014

October 27

One of the good things about not updating on the weekends, is that when I come back on Monday and start listing things I got done, I feel like there was real progress.

First, I got my 10K steps all three days. I got 2 days of de-cluttering, and 2 days of planking --and they were not the same two days, if you know what I mean. I did not plank Saturday, because we went to see Lyle Lovett in concert and got home very late--I am a lazy bones who saves her planking as a bedtime routine, there was just no way that was happening.

But really this weekend was all about the sewing. Poodle girl's jacket is ready for a zipper--which is the last step. Honestly, this jacket should not have taken me this long, but I ran into a problem with a vague direction, and let me tell you this fabric is not great for ripping out seams. It is also not very structured, which means it is hard to see where things are supposed to go. But I have it together, the girl has tried it on, and it fits. I swear, I don't know when I have ever been more proud of something I made, not because it looks professional (far from it) but because it was so fussy to make. Now let's see if I can get the zipper in with a minimal amount of swearing.
I also happen to think this is amazing because my parents are visiting--but they are pretty understanding of my need to sew as Halloween is less than a week away.

The weekend was also about a black and white photography challenge. The challenge is to post a black and white photograph (to facebook) every day for 5 days. I'm having quite a lot of fun with it. Here is Friday's entry:

Today, my parents are leaving. Originally I thought they were staying until tomorrow morning, so I cleared this day too. Which of course means--free day!

On tap aside from the big three: Buying a zipper and perhaps more tulle--so I can get the jacket finished and the tutu started, cleaning, and running. I'd also like to get busy reading chapter 8 (aka the LAST chapter). In fact this whole week has some big reading goals. I have two books to finish for book club (one we are discussing, one I am passing) and chapter 8. I think this is on the order of 400 pages by next Monday. Oh and it would be great if I finished chapter 8 by Wednesday--no pressure. Sigh. I tried to get my book club books on audio thinking I could listen while I sewed, shopped and cleaned. Only one of them was available and I would have to get it through interlibrary loan--plus it is the book we aren't discussing, so if I don't get it read by Monday it is no big deal.

Friday, October 24, 2014

October 24

So yesterday I had a really relaxing slow paced day with my mom. Seriously, I should do this more often. I crossed three things off my weekly to do list even. I planked, I got 13k steps, I got rid of two dental floss samples (my mom is on a quest to find her favorite floss that has been discontinued--yes, it does actually run in the family, this weirdness) and I started sewing the poodle girl outfit! Best of all I got all of chapter 7 proofread!

We really didn't get the shopping in, because we were kind of lazy all morning. But there are only so many hours in the day.

Today, I want to do the big three, and work more on the costumes. Which is kind of what I say every day anymore. I feel like it is all I ever hope for. I do have a doctor's appointment today too, and I'd like to run and shower before that, which might be tricky with guests because I always shower in the "guest" bathroom. However, it is 8am--the sky is turning pink, and so far I'm the only one awake in the house, as all the family have gone to jobs and school; my parents are still sleeping. I was going to wait until 8:30, give the sun a chance to come up, but maybe I'll go as soon as I post this--be back by the time anyone wakes up.

Yesterday I tried to capture the pinks of the sky as the sun rose, because it was quite lovely. This was the best I got:

The weekend is more of the same, plus a concert on Saturday!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

October 23

So yesterday, I did not run. In fact I went to yoga, which is not an activity that adds steps to the fitbit. And somehow I managed to clock in at 15K steps. That should explain just how busy the day was. I also decluttered a bunch, by taking $8.30 in cans and bottles back. That includes the 3 bottles that I had to take back to the specialty store since Meijer doesn't carry that brand (whatEVER). I think I got most of my stuff for the day done. I planked for 3 sets of 30 seconds (even though it was yoga day) and my mom told me I'm not planking, I'm bridging. WhatEVER.

I even decided that I didn't like the way the zipper was basted into panda girl's costume, ripped it out and basted and SEWED it in. Despite no less than 4 interruptions to my 1/2 hour sewing.

Super unhelpful Bernina zipper instructions

Sometimes when I think about yesterday and all the running around I did, but with not much to show for it, I wonder if I really got anything done. I need some way to quantify the intangibles I suppose.

Today, my parents are here, so I'm dialing back a notch. I'm hoping to do my big three of course--including a walk with my mom. I'm hoping to get some sewing done, and for the next however many days I need to spend at least 1/2 hour a day on my husband's book. I'm on chapter 7 of 8 chapters, and I want to get it finished soon.

Shopping is also on tap sometime this visit. All the decluttering has left me realizing that I have some significant gaps in my wardrobe. It was hard to see around the clothes I didn't want to wear. Now most of what I have left are clothes I like, but they are mostly black, white and brown. I want some purple and maybe some gray (round out the neutrals!).

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

October 22

I was just not 30 minutes ago praising my own time management skills, and then got sucked into facebook. Sigh.

Ok, yesterday. yesterday was the usual whirlwind of activity. 11K steps, 3 sets of 30 planks, just some general paper clutter (and a chapstick) gone. I volunteered, i went to work where I discovered a whole bunch of work leftover from the fundraiser. Plus a bunch of volunteers needing to de-compress. Would you believe our deposits were off for the weekend (They were more than we had written down--so that was good but STILL)? Then I came home and made cupcakes. Did I mention the cupcakes yesterday? Maybe. Anyway, I bought a cake mix and a frosting and while the girls did homework, I baked cupcakes. I was feeling very domestic until one of the girls asked me if I'd frost them using the pastry bag "so they'd look nice." Um yeah no.
DSCN3760 I don't think they look bad? They're cupcakes for crying out loud!

Hey I also got the zipper basted into super girl costume. And the alterations done. And I think my guest area is ready for guests.

Today, big three PLUS: Guests arriving.
Seriously: yoga, farmer's market, small grocery run, clean bathroom upstairs, more sewing. I'm hoping to finish the zipper, because BAH. I also have to run the cupcakes over to school and I should do some work, so I don't have to go in tomorrow. I'm not sure how all of this is going to get done, so I'll have to prioritize.

I said to my husband that I felt like my load did not lift once my fundraiser was over like I thought it would. And he said--it has, you just have gotten a lot of crap thrown at you that added to it. I looked confused and said like what? "Cupcakes" was all he said.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

October 21

So yesterday I ran. My iPod gave out (batteries) and I still ran. It was ugly. But it meant I got my 15k steps.
I ran my errands too. Even though Joann's was FULL of people. Even though I had to wait in line for 45 minutes to buy 3/4 yard of interfacing.

I really put off laying out the poodle costume because of the fabric. I said last year that I would never work with that silky fur stuff again. I lied, I guess. I knew it would be messy, and so somehow I managed to de-mildew the shower AND vacuum all of the downstairs before I cut the pieces out. That turned out to be an epic mistake, because I had to vacuum again afterwards. But on the bright side, it is all cut out.

I planked 3 sets of 30 seconds. It was hard, which reminds me that I need to keep doing it.
You will note that I did not mention decluttering. I didn't do any.

Today, I need to volunteer and work both. The bathrooms need to get cleaned and the final stuff for the parental visit needs to happen. I think I’m down to washing the extra blankets.

Today, I also need to get in the big three, but probably the work will take care of steps. Somehow, I need to come up with a snack for my daughter’s book club too. She wants to bring cupcakes, but I guess that depends on if I have a cake mix, and frosting. I mean I could MAKE frosting, but it would need to be dairy free—and I usually make buttercream. And for sewing I need to decide: Alterations or start sewing the poodle. I may do the alterations, so that when I start sewing the shedding silky fur, I can clean the machine ONCE.

Monday, October 20, 2014

October 20

Oh how much this weekend, I wanted to be in Illinois. My mom was in a play, my cousin had a wedding reception (they had eloped), and it was homecoming at the college I graduated from. Sadly, I was not in Illinois, I was here feeling spectacularly run down and slightly crappy.

Friday was just so busy. I managed 15K steps--I hadn't wanted to run but Oh was it ever a good run. And the rest of the day went super smoothly (probably because as it turned out--I forgot a bunch of stuff) and even the evening went fairly well. Only two people were upset with me at my job, which when you work with the public is actually pretty amazing.

I got the super panda costume all done and ready to fit--it still needed a zipper and to be taken in, two things I hoped to do over the weekend. However, my model would NOT try it on until Sunday night. So while I know how much it needs to be taken in, I have not actually done the alterations. I read over the poodle girl's pattern and figured out I need fusible interfacing, but really no sewing.

There was no decluttering or planks Friday. There was decluttering Saturday, when I secretly added 4 shirts to the donation bin from my girl's "outgrown but OH I LOVE this shirt" pile. There were no planks Saturday, and getting my 10k steps was a big chore (but I did it!). I also battled a massive headache most of the day--which means I sat and read a LOT.

Sunday, I felt better and planked 2 sets of 30 seconds, got my 10K steps AND cleaned out the pencil drawer (which was so full it was barely opening, and was responsible for the pens I kept finding under the bread machine in the cupboard below). In addition, I was dusting the guest room and found several other things I decided I no longer needed. Like I said though, so sewing. Also I took the girls shopping, which I think should get me a medal. It is always tricky when I take them shopping together. I have one who is quite daring in her fashion choices, and one that is more practical. The practical one needed pants--which she wanted to interpret as leggings, and needed a top to cover her bum. The fashionista was VERY put out that I wasn't going to buy her an outfit too (she HAS leggings, tunics, regular pants you name it!). She went so far as to try on silver leggings (tin man) and gold leggings (C3PO) and nearly had a fit when I told her no. Like I said--medal needed.

Today, I am still feeling pretty rundown. Mostly tired. The headache from Saturday had pretty much dissipated by Sunday but maybe I overdid it. I do have things I need to take care of today. My parents are coming to visit this week (hence the guest room decluttering) and I have a bunch of stuff I'd like to take care of before they arrive. I have a huge list of errands (including that fusible interfacing) and I'd like to get all my job work taken care of before they come.

I think today will need to be running, running errands, and cutting out the poodle girl's costume (plus of course, my big three). It means I'll have to be putting in a zipper probably while my girls are practicing their instruments, but they've been playing for a year, so it isn't as bad as it might be. Plus no squeaky instruments. I do hope to go completely through the clothing storage box before the girls get home from school, and do more clandestine decluttering, but that is more of a stretch goal.

Friday, October 17, 2014

October 17

I am feeling very much like I am treading water. Or more accurately, like I have been treading water for 3 or 4 minutes and am about to go under. Yesterday I sewed for nearly 2 hours and I feel like I barely have anything to show for it. I cut the tulle, I sewed it all together (9 pieces, sewed in sets of three--actually doublestitched), made three layers of tulle, put in two gathering stitches and gathered it and started to pin it to the underskirt. If I were optimistic, I would see the end in sight. The end where I sew it to the underskirt, sew the bodice to the skit, fit it, add a zipper, and then BE DONE. And then start costume number 2.


That's an awful lot of skirt and tulle!

I got my 10k steps yesterday without trying, and my planks went pretty easy. I had trouble with de-cluttering, but got rid of a bath puff right before bed. so that all should have felt good. Also I managed to get the living room vacuumed, and the frog water changed and dishes done which all contribute to a general feeling of cleanliness. But it was tempered by this feeling of impending doom at work. I am glad that not every event feels like this, and that I know that it is a combo of my under-preparedness and some staffing issues that have come up (if you can call volunteers "staff") at the last minute. Today should be the end, I just need to get through the day.

On that note, getting through the day looks like: running this morning (minutecast and radar say 120 dry minutes--sigh I was kind of looking for an excuse to skip.), sewing before I need to head off to errands (bank, post office) and then the craziness that is work. I also work during my usual "chill out" time tonight as our fundraiser starts. After that, the weekend looks clear. So there should be a LOT of sewing, as I'd like to finish super panda's costume, so I can start cutting on the poodle's jacket on Monday.

I'm going to cut myself some slack on de-cluttering and planking today. Steps should not be an issue at all today.

And on the brightest note yet, I did unravel the leg and heel of the sock, looked at the foot and thought--why does this not fit her? So I stopped unravelling and this morning, I tried it on her. The foot part fits perfectly. It just needs a bigger ankle. So, I think the plan is to do a wider heel--add some stitches to the ankle/leg and go from there. So only the weekend's knitting (a long traveling weekend, but STILL) is lost.

Man, I really don't want to run, but running always clears my head, and makes it easier for me to focus.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

October 16

The good: I managed to get my 10K steps, get everyone vaccinated against the flu, sew the skirt lining to the skirt, went to yoga, and got a bunch of work done.

The bad: I only really decluttered by eating leftovers, and tossing what I might actually term "pre-clutter"; papers and such that had been sitting around for a while, but most people would have termed this "cleaning." I am having panic at work because one of my co-chair people for this event is out with a medical issue, and the others are more "big picture" people, and so I'm having to remember and fill in details that I usually don't have to deal with. Thus, people keep calling and texting me about napkins and markers. It makes me feel underprepared, usually I like to be the one calm in the storm.

The ugly: I'm going to have to rip most of the finished sock out, as it is too small, despite having been tried on and having fit at one point.

Just ponder that for a minute--I'm going to have to rip out about 2 weeks worth of knitting.

Moving on.

Today I have more work (and boy will I be glad when this week is over and my part in this fundraiser is OVER), and a noon meeting. I actually have to pack a lunch! I'm going to get the big three done (even if we are talking more paper here--paper piles up!), and as soon as I post this I'm going to go cut out black tulle until work time. I'd also like to get my house swept and vacuumed, but that might be the dreamer in me.

I'm posting this picture taken on our weekend trip, because I just need some peaceful lake today. Breathe in, breathe out....


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

October 15

Yesterday was such a hectic day! I did get my 10k steps, I planked AND I got 4 items of clothing out of my closet and into the donation box.

I also managed to get the crinoline cut, and the skirt main fabric sewn together. I also got a bunch of crap done at work, although I am behind (I work for a non-profit who holds 3 fundraisers a year—the next one starts Friday. Yes, this Friday.). OH and I finished binding off the sock.

It occurred to me, as people asked on Facebook that I didn’t give details on the sock. So here goes:
Yarn: regia Fluormania color
Needles: 1.5 US which I think is 2.25mm
Pattern: On your toes From an Old Interweave knits. I have this pattern memorized because I use it All. The. Time.

Today, steps and decluttering of course. I’m going to yoga, so I’m skipping planking since we basically do planks between poses. I work another couple of hours today AND am taking girls (and me) to get flu shots today. I really want to get that shirt done, and get to the tulle today.

I must say too, that I am not anticipating this to be a great day. One of my children has been in a first class mood since last night at about 5pm. I’m not sure what happened to turn her so sour, but am thinking the idea of flu shots after her afterschool book club are not going to endear her to me slurpee bribe or not.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

October 14

Yesterday, I posted my update, checked both accuweather's minute cast and the weather channel radar, determined rain was not imminent, grabbed my ipod and headed out the door, promising that if it rained I could quit at 2 miles. I ended up going all 3, run/walking a 7/3. I also went to Meijer and did lots of running around the house, and so ended the day with what must be a record for me: 18K steps. I remembered to (grudgingly) do my 3 sets of 30 second planks. I ddi not de-clutter, but rather watched in amazement as people took my discards from the curb and loaded it into their pickup trucks. I worked on panda girl's costume, and got the bodice sewed together! I also cut out the skirt from fabric, realized the "interfacing" specified on the pattern was actually supposed to be an underskirt (and whoops, I didn't have the right kind or nearly enough). I went out after dinner, and bought some crinoline, because Joann's does not sell light buckram interfacing at all, much less in a 60" wide like the pattern calls for!!!

I also started on binding off the sock. It is a sewn bind off and is taking me for ever it feels like.
Plus you can see some last minute division practice in the background--big test today!

Today, I have a hair appointment, which cuts into my sewing time and probably will cut into my steps. Besides the big three, and the appointment, my goals today include, sewing on panda girl's skirt (hopefully trying to get to the tulle part), changing the frog water (ugh), and getting some work done for work. Hopefully it won't leave me too exhausted, as I'd like to have the girl try on the sock and it if fits, I'd like to finish binding it off.

PS I know it looks long and skinny, the child has long and skinny feet.

Monday, October 13, 2014

October 13

Our school district does not give us days off for most Federal holidays (Like Columbus day or veteran's day Or even Martin Luther King"s Birthday--so don't get your panties in a twist), but they do give us these random professional development days. The last one was Friday and we took great advantage and decided to develop our sightseeing skills. So Thursday afternoon when the kids got home, we loaded up the car and headed "north."
Heading north is what makes you a true Michigander--everyone heads north.

Our first stop was Traverse City/Interlochen. Interlochen is home to a very prestigious fine arts high school, and we were there to see a student performance. Most specifically a "collage" of student performances. It was wonderful. There was ballet, classical music, modern dance, singer songwriters, ensembles of all kinds (seriously, 8 bassoons), poetry, and a short film. Most of them were great, although some were a little freaky (short film, I'm looking at you). My girls LOVED it.

Friday is was even further north to Harbor Springs, with a stop in Charlevoix to see the Apple fest, which was a giant art show fronted by an entire farmer's market full of apples. By Friday night we had purchased: two pies (from Suzy's pies), a pound of taffy, A dozen Tom's Mom's cookies , and two jars of preserves from American Spoon foods. Yes, you can literally eat your way through Northern Michigan.

So, I did not plank Thursday or Friday or Saturday. I did do 3 sets of 30 seconds Sunday. I did not declutter anything Thursday or Friday or Saturday, although I took out a bunch of stuff for large trash pickup yesterday. I did get my 10K steps in EVERY DAY! I ran on Thursday which meant I had something like 12K steps before I even got in the car.

Sadly, no halloween progress was made. However, I did take along the sock I am working on and am ready to bind it off.

Today, the plan was to run. However, I hate hate hate running in the rain and there is an 80% chance of rain. I could have run before I wrote this, as it hasn't rained at all, but I also needed to finish my breakfast (going back to school is a hard transition from vacation). I do plan on decluttering, getting my steps, and planking. I need to work more on the costumes, and I need to make a grocery run. I also need to do all the laundry I didn't do over the weekend. I feel like I should run before I grocery shop, as this will give me time to focus and make a list, but it may work out the opposite rain wise. I also considered putting off my run until tomorrow, but the rain chance for tomorrow is 100%.
At any rate, I leave you here with some scenery from our trip. And hopefully tomorrow I'll have a picture of the finished sock. I thought I had a picture of the nearly finished sock, but alas I do not.


Thursday, October 09, 2014

October 9

Yesterday, I got my 10k steps and decluttered, but did not plank. I did go to yoga though.

I got brave with the Halloween costumes. I always get nervous as I'm about to cut a pattern out, because you really can't uncut something. I cut out the bodice of the panda girl dress, and the lining. I put in all the darts (lining and main fabric-- so 8 total) and fused the logo to the front of the bodice. I had hoped to sew it all together, but between work and after school stuff that just didn't happen.

Today, I am going to run, then go to work. Hopefully, I'll have some time to sew the bodice together, because I'd like to get that done before the weekend, which is starting today due to a pd day. Thankfully, our school district doesn't do Columbus Day, so Monday should be back to normal.

At any rate, I won't be updating again until Monday as the goals will really only be the big three. Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

October 8

Well yesterday I did get my steps, and I planked 3 sets of 30 seconds, and while I dithered for the longest time about de-cluttering, I did decide to go have a looksee in the storage areas of our basement. And there I found several empty boxes that I felt like I didn't need, so i broke them down for recycling. Yes, that's sad, they weren't even broken down.

I wasn't sure how much sewing I was going to be able to do, because I had both volunteering and work. But I managed to get the panda girl logo mostly done (all it needs is some drawing):

And I did google the cross cut thing, and I think I have that figured out. (Maybe).

It also came to my attention that certain people in the household are sick of the stress of halloween costumes. To which I say 1) I'm stressing more on the fact that I put this off and 2) if this applies to you--you might want to stop reading this month.

Today, the usual plus, Farmer's market, yoga, cutting out the panda dress, gassing up the car, more work, and some routine cleaning.

Part of my wanting to get into a routine for the month was to figure out which "chores" I could reasonably do on which days. I like knowing when things were last cleaned, and being able to say--Oh hey it is Wednesday, time to clean X. I don't actually like cleaning though, so I tend to put things off until they bother me. Am attempting to get ahead on things.

Oh hey you made it through to the end--here's a picture of my coffee mug and my knitting.
mug and knitting

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

October 7

Ok, I'm running late today so this will be a fast one.

Got 13K steps yesterday, planked, but forgot to de-clutter. Finished the cape for Panda Girl, laid out the bodice of the dress, but got confused about the skirt part which said it had to be laid out crosswise. I have no idea, and need to google. Started on the logo, learned it needed to have a dark purple background, so I need to go buy some dark purple for that.

Today, I have volunteer and work. So trying for the usual stuff plus buying that purple fabric, googling the crosswise stuff, and possibly cutting the bodice out.

Monday, October 06, 2014

October 5--pattern cutting day

This was the first weekend since September started that I didn't update on the weekend, and it felt weird. Also it makes today feel like I have a lot to catch up on.

First, i did get my 10K steps all weekend, even though it was tough going on Saturday. I planked 3 sets of 30 seconds each on Friday and 3 sets of 35 seconds each on Sunday. I forgot to plank Saturday. I've been trying to plank every day (or 6 of 7 days) since mid-August and it still isn't habit enough that I didn't forget. I did declutter every day this weekend, getting rid of shorts I will probably never wear, instead of storing them, getting rid of sweatshirts that no longer fit he girls, and deciding that the metal water bottle in the back of the cupboard probably should go.

Between Friday and Saturday, I also think I got most of the fabric shopping done for the costumes. I even managed to take the girls, which is usually a disaster, as they always want really pricey fabrics. I needed them though because I wasn't sure if the idea that I had for "purple" cape or "poodle" fabric was the same as theirs. Plus we couldn't find purple pleather for boots (I know, right!?) They actually did great. In addition, I got panda girl measured, so I can start on her costume.

I had one of my daughters take pictures of me in my new finished white hoodie. I didn't like any of them, but this one was the best:
Which probably tells you how bad they all were. This pattern is Knitting pure and Simple's Neck down hooded tunic. I knit it up with Pure Aran Gold in white on size US 7 needles. I bought this yarn at a LYS that went out of business. I made this because I have a green one in the same yarn (only green--duh) that I LOVE. it is a little big and bulky on me

Today, I'd like to run, and am in fact dressed in running clothes. This should take care of my steps--I have two meetings (after 5pm even which is unusual for me) and so I need to get them done early. If I get to 12K today great--if not I'm not going to stress about it. And of course I'll plank and declutter.

I need to clean bathrooms today, but I'd really and truly like to get actually laying out the pattern and (eep) cutting on the Panda girl costume. Perhaps I'll even go as far as to say--finish the cape and get the super hero logo started. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Friday, October 03, 2014

October 3

Yesterday was a little bit better kid wise--except I made a classic parenting mistake and did not actually check the homework progress before I agreed to let them have a friend over. When I did check I discovered that "a few problems" to them means 13 of the 20 were still left to do. Sigh. So I didn't have whining and crying over homework, I had sassy attitude and I hate yous over cutting the fun time with friends short. Hopefully the weekend will give us all the break we need.

I did manage to get my 10k steps (side note, my husband is a gem! He knew I needed to get out, and he offered to shepherd miss sassy pants and her sister through band practice and reading time while I walked.). I planked 3 sets of 30 seconds, which felt easier! And I took the running shoes to the donation box and went through my rainbow girl jewelry. This is another thing I know I should just get rid of entirely, and yet I can't bring myself to. I did get rid of 4 of the pins.

I started my fabric shopping list for the costumes, but it isn't done. I need to check my coupons and get moving on that.

Today, I was going to run, but the radar has Michigan looking like this:

(Lansing helpfully highlighted--and PS I do not live in the "thumb" area--which is the only place looking clear right now)

I don't run in the rain.
Steps might be the challenge today. Planks and de-cluttering are still on deck. I'm also going to try to finish the shopping list and possibly go shopping for some of the fabric and notions. It just feels like a good day to stay home and clean and sew and make soup, so I may do all those things.

In the meantime, I leave you with the puffball mushroom, that appeared on our porch:


And the progress on the kid sock I am making:

Yes, that is a lifeline of dental floss--I need to knit a bit more and see if it fits the recipient. I know a smarter person would have figured gauge, measured the foot and mathed it out. As opposed to me, a person willing to "waste" two days worth of sock knitting to make sure it fits the kid's foot the way she wants it to fit. the lifeline marks the spot where I would need to increase if I make it bigger. I happen to think it is the right size, but the girl in question was dubious with just the toe made.

Thursday, October 02, 2014

October 2

I was going to start out with--Man yesterday just sucked like a Dyson. But in fact, most of the day was quite lovely and didn't suck. I went to yoga, and then went biking with one of my former running friends, out to the other running friend's new house. I love spending time with these ladies, they are a great support team and people I know I can count on in good times and bad. We don't run 2-3 times a week like we used to and I miss spending that time with them. So that was fun.

Then I picked up the children.
Probably the less said about this the better. I'll just leave it as--today my goal is to do better.

Due to the fun times AND the sucky times, I did not plank or de-clutter yesterday. Although I did decide yesterday that my oldest running shoes have probably "outlived their usefulness" to me. I didn't count that because they are still sitting the hall and not the donation bin or the trash bin. I got my 10K steps, mostly by pacing around after the girls went to bed. I also did yoga--so that's kind of planking right? Plus we did three boat poses, and I did not wimp out in any of the ways I usually wimp out.
I also did a little planning on costumes, deciding to make the poodle girl's costume out of a jacket pattern (I think). I have three pattern possibilities.

Today, I'm going to de-clutter (actually take the shoes down to the box), get my steps in and plank. I'm also going to look again at the jacket patterns and narrow them down to one I think will work. I'm going to get panda girl measured, and make my supply list. I also am going to tackle all the household chores I have let slide the last 2 days.

Stretch goal: Get my newly finished sweater photographed, so I can write about it tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

October 1

Yesterday I wrapped up September by not really doing too much planning towards October, but by planking (3 sets 30 seconds), getting my 10k steps, and getting rid of two things. I do have goals for October though. So without further ado:

Finish Halloween costumes.
Ok, this could actually say start halloween costumes. I do have the ideas: panda girl and poodle girl. I don't have fabric, or a real idea of what I'm going to pattern poodle girl on. I was thinking her monster costume from last year, but it doesn't have sleeves and she wants sleeves. I may look and see if there is something I can adapt.

Steps, planking, and delcuttering.

Get on a regular schedule.
I have been slowly working towards this and I feel like I am almost there.

knit something
I started a sock last night, hopefully I'll finish that pair and start the next before the end of the month.

I have so much more I want to accomplish, but I feel like to keep the goals reasonable, that's where they should stay. Of course, I want to finish the PJ pants--which would mean a pair for me and two more pairs for each girl, but they (and really everything) take a backseat to the costumes.

My mom is coming at the end of the month too, and I am hoping to have the guest room cleared out enough for guests (it is almost there thanks to the de-cluttering in September).