Monday, December 31, 2012

Bye, 2012 ! Hope everyone had fun with you !

Current Mood : Excited !

Happy New Year’s Eve ! Hope you have something awesome planned. I’m gonna be home with Dearest Son – Beloved Hubby’s gotta work, which ranks – playin’ with dolls and watching movies, which is awesome. We also had take-out for dinner, I got a McRib ! So I’m happy !

Finally made a decision. Since I still don’t know why I’m being so drag-butt about opening those new Deluxe Fashion Packs, I thought I’d make a game out of it. Those Dollar Tree packs have been sitting around since the month began, so I’m gonna finish adapting those before I crack into the latest new stuff. After all, it’s hard to appreciate the stuff you have when new is constantly rolling in. Besides, it’s more fun to adapt than debox !

So I cracked open the next pack, the one with the shirt and glitter-dot orange knee-shorts and the purple glitter-dot tube dress. If the dress had one back seam, instead of two side seams, I’d take it apart and sew it from scratch – especially after altering those shorts, more later. Ironically, the top is hemmed, the first dress hem I’ve seen. Too bad it’s so badly snarled in the back, I’ll probably have to rip out the whole thing. But that’s tomorrow’s challenge. Today, I worked on the top and shorts.

The top is a lot like the striped one on Operetta, cut in the same style and sewn the same way, just with longer sleeves and a bigger neckline. With the hearts print, it reminded me of an oversize nightshirt I was once given as a holiday gift, so that’s what I remade it as, for Robecca. She never had a Dead Tired version, either. Fray-checked the sleeves, and zig-zagged the raw bottom edge, several rows. I liked how it looked, so I did the same to the neckline.

Made a decent pair of slide-slippers, but because I just made her a pair for swimwear, wanted something else for her nightie. Dug around in the cavernous MH shoe box and came up with a LIV doll slipper. I’d bought several accessory packs from TRU’s website when they were on markdown, and while the shoes mostly fit, they truly don’t. The ‘Movie Party’ set came with pink slippers, and not much else I could use. The food was really small, and I was kinda mad at m’self for wasting $1.98 on it when the slippers didn’t fit either. I mean, I could kinda fudge the LIV skates and sandals, but not the slippers, which is opposite my usual doll-shoe-swap experience. So they got buried at the bottom, pushing more fashionable boots, pumps, and platform heels up into view.

One jumped into my hand tonight, though, and I wondered. It was pink enough to work with the nightie, and different enough to not be confused with the high-heel slippers the other DT dolls got. Since soaking slightly-too-small plastic doll shoes in boiling water helped Ken sandals fit Deuce, I’ve wondered if it’d work for others. Well, you can only do so much with available space, but a quick soak did help the LIV slippers fit Robecca. I no longer regret ‘wasting’ that two bucks !

The orange glitter-dot shorts….(sigh) No hems, of course, so I was gonna just Fray-Check ‘em and drive on, but then, the elastic at the waist started to come out. So I had to open the back seam to get to the elastic to re-sew it…which was easy, because the entire inseam and front and back seams were also coming apart. Since I already had them back to pattern cut-outs, I went ahead and sewed hems, then snugged the fit a bit, while I was at it. I am now satisfied with the shorts. While I prefer her shirt as a solo nightie, modesty encourages the shorts, so there they are. Maybe they help keep her hips in top shape while she sleeps or something. Thinking of adding ribbon straps to the blouse, so it can go off-shoulder a bit. Hmmm…

While I was finishing that up, Dearest was doing some custom work of his own. He took the jacket from the ‘Michelle’ doll and fitted it to his Princess Cadence pony. It really looks cute ! And eliminated the sleeve I ninja-fixed. Ah, well.

Gonna make popcorn and chill. See ya’ll next year ! 

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Breakfast at TRU's...

Current Mood : Toy-dazed.

Decided last night that today was the best day to use up half of my $20. rewards certificates from TRU, despite the fact that Beloved Hubby wasn’t home ‘til 3am, and I thought knocking out the dishes while I waited for him was also a great idea. Ah, well. At least the kitchen was nice and clean for breakfast ! And going the first Saturday after Christmas seemed like a poor choice for someone determined to look at everything, and then choose how to best spend that ‘free’ ten bucks.

Since our TRU opened at 9am today, I hopped up early and was there when the door opened. And pretty much had the entire store to m’self for an hour. Nothing new in MH, although they were swimming in Dot Dead Gorgeous and Ghouls Alive!, neither of which I wanted. Nothing in the My Little Pony section, either. And even ‘buy two get one free’ for Bratzillaz clothes still seemed expensive – especially when I haven’t opened the Deluxe Fashion Packs yet !

Finally saw the Apptivity MH line, and wandered around for a bit with the Lagoona one before I realized that I had no idea if it’d even work with my non-iPad tablet. Turns out it doesn’t, so I’m glad I put it back. Also dragged a $17. Barbie StarDoll  - the one with the glittery pink pumps - on a store tour for a while, but truthfully, all I wanted were her shoes, and I’m kind of at a shoe limit… at least for now. So she went back, too.

Finally decided on a copy of Apples to Apples Jr. game, that we could all play together. We’d all seen the ads and tried to find it so we could play over the holidays, but it was sold out around here. Or misplaced. Our TRU has shelf-talkers all over the game wall, saying games were organized alphabetically, but all I could find for ‘A’ was Angry Birds : Star Wars incarnations, then it went straight to Bop-It and Candyland.  Turned out, all the A to A versions were at the very end of the game wall, as far apart from ABirds as possible. Ah, well. Would have gone for ‘standard’ A to A, but I figured a gentler version would work for us all. Might even help Dearest understand some new concepts and word usage. Or it could just be fun. That’d be good, too.

The next (and luckily final) two $5. certificates don’t expire ‘til nearly the end of January. You know I’ll be out again hunting by then, right ? (grin) Probably spend it on me next time !

I’m glad it’ll be a little while before I go trawling for more MH. I kinda had a scary lesson today. Back before Christmas, I traded and bought a lot of stuff ! And I’ve treasured it all…but I remembered that I bought Robecca’s Dance outfit, and had no idea where it was. Or what it included. I had it, I knew it, but where – and did I get that awesome hat headband ? Luckily, I found it, and I got the whole thing but for shoes, but I couldn’t believe I’d been so neglectful and absent-minded. So I made sure to put it on my signature – and only – Robecca, so I could really enjoy and share how pretty it is. And I worked a little more on the slippers, too ! Too bad I sewed one with the toe going where I designated the heel…

Minus the skirt, this is gonna be Robecca’s swimsuit. I’d love to find Dance Class Operetta, for the same reason, but I’ve yet to see any of ‘em at retail. Ah, well. If I get geared up enough about it, I’ll get off my duff and sew my own beachwear ! 

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Yow ! Stripes ahoy !

Current Mood : Dreading dishpan hands.

Woke with a tummyache, so I took it easy today. Beloved Hubby had an overnight shift, so he wasn’t eager to start the day bright-eyed and early either. However, Dearest Son was kinda taking advantage of that, and getting into trouble, so I reasoned that if I was gonna be up and miserable to keep an eye on Dearest, he wasn’t gonna enjoy it either. He had toys and his stuff all over the living room so thickly, I couldn’t get to the bookcases when I went to put some away, so there ya go. We were gonna clean.

Three hours later, we were done. All the junk and toys and stuff under his desk had been pulled out, sorted through, reconsidered, and stored, and we came to an agreement over cars and Lego. Lego, with a few exceptions, has been banished to his room, where hopefully, I won’t keep finding it with my feet everywhere else. We also filled a Mal-Wart sack with decent-to-donate books and toys and loaded two 13-gallon trashbags. I’ve been meaning to get that done for months !

I didn’t realize my stomach issues had cleared up until I started our late lunch. Hmm. He also has two wrecked closets to sort through, to make room for all this Lego…

It’s funny why I needed to get to the bookcase. When we shuffled furniture the other day, I decided to go through the nearly untouched pile of books by my side of the bed. Most I’d bought used for a dime or scrounged for free, so I’d always have something to read. As of yesterday, I have over 50 free books on the tablet, most via the Kindle app and site, and I’ve only read three, and have barely started two others. I have *plenty* to read for months, and there’s more free treats every day ! So I stored the ‘keepers’ and dumped the rest in the donations bag with Dearest’s. Once I could get to the bookcase.

There are soooo many free Kindle books – and no, you don’t need a Kindle to get ‘em or read ‘em, there’s apps for tabs and readers for computers, all free, too ! – that I don’t go on the prowl for ‘em every day. Or else, I’d probably have 500 free books waiting for my attention ! There’s websites devoted to scaring up the really good books, or you can just go through the ‘Hot 100 Free’ tab on Amazon. My only beef is that the freebies are, of course, heavily skewed towards fluffy romance and teen genre fiction. Not much reference, lots of religious, quite a bit of adult naughtiness, but also there’s cookbooks and study guides, so there really is something for everyone.

Well, I got dishes to do. I really can’t stand letting them pile up the way I used to. Now that I cook most of the time, I truly treasure a clean kitchen !

Sleep tight ! 

Friday, December 28, 2012

Ghoulia's Spring, from Dollar Tree

Current Mood : Meandering

Had just enough snow to cover yesterday’s tracks, but the sun melted a lot of the road slush. While most of the Christmas snowfall around here has long since been churned up and walked through, the new dusting makes everything look fresh and clean and sparkly all over again. So pretty.

Finished up with the second Dollar Tree fashions pack today. Ghoulia’s wearing the strapless dress from the jeans pack – shown here as it was originally, on the far right – which came out pretty well, I think ! It was a pull-on dress with an elastic waist until I got hold of it. I guess sewing closures cost too much for this rock-bottom budget series, nearly everything’s pull-on. Since I had to cut a back closure anyway, I went ahead and took out a half inch off each side, then folded it over for my own seam and cheap Velcro ™. No hems either, but it’s got ‘em now. I was just gonna hem and go, but it’s the little touches that make a difference, so I hemmed with ribbon, and I really like how it looks.

Here’s a secret – the hem ribbon and the waist ribbon aren’t the same. I didn’t have enough of one color to do both, so I figured the two random lengths I had would work, since they were just a couple shades off and a couple inches apart. However, the waist sash and the headband, which you can barely see, are from the same strip, so they match perfectly.  And I took about 15 photos before I realized I’d forgotten her glasses. I feel a lot better, but my head’s still off on its own tangents, which is fairly typical, too.

Finished up the rest of that pack today, too. Not much I could do with the striped top, except Fray-Check the tag holes and not-hemmed everything. To be honest, I kinda like the picks at the neckline, so I left ‘em and didn’t fix any of them. Another cool person on the message board says the striped top fits the MH guy body, so there’s another option. I’m thinking of sketching it out as a super-simple pattern. There really is a demand for some no-hem, sew-and-go super easy pieces. 

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Oh, ham, you sweet, delicious betrayer, you....

Current Mood : Oooh, my tummy...

Today, I finally got the Christmas ham into the oven. (laugh) Well, no one was in much of a mood or health to eat big on Tuesday, and since I just got it out of the freezer Sunday night, it probably wasn’t thawed anyway. It tormented us for the near four hours it took to cook with its heavenly aromas – which could be detected two doors down.

We also learned that Ginger-kitty loves tuna, but won’t eat a whole can of it. She daintily nibbled at the can we presented her with on Christmas, but barely made a dent in it. I bagged it up and served the rest of it today and yesterday, and she went after it with a joy that was a pleasure to witness. I’ll know better for Valentine’s day. Also not to heat it up in the microwave. I always thought ‘fish in the microwave = sin’ because of the smell. Nope. Ask me how long it takes lovingly dished up tuna to explode and paste the inside of said microwave with microscopic shreds of itself. About ten seconds. How long does it take to clean up afterwards ? About 20 minutes.

Speaking of kitty, we sprung for a real litter box today, since she’s pretty much ours now. She and we have been pigging it with most of the cardboard boxes we had lying around the place. Disposable, but there are better options out there. Also bought a laser pointer. That thing earned its $3. keep ten minutes after we got the batteries installed. She chased that thing like it was tuna. She finally had to retreat to the bathroom sink to get a breather.

We also did a big furniture swap. About the time Beloved Hubby decided he wanted a comfy chair in the bedroom over his art desk, Dearest Son decided he was tired of his green recliner and wanted a desk. So they both gave it some thought, decided a few days ago, and we swapped it all out today. Vacuumed, too. Our room looks cozier, his room looks more like a young man’s and less like the aftermath of a chaotic Lego party. To add to the fun, we managed to get his Dumpster-dived wheelchair in there, for extra seating, so he’s clam-happy. We rolled our old patio table – what Dearest was using as a desk / play surface, after it ceased to be our dining area table – out to the Dumpster. The Dumpster takes, the Dumpster gives… the table was gone about two hours later, when I took out more trash. I wish the new owners many happy meals and conversations.

Speaking of furniture, have you seen this ? I had to grin. If you don’t like to click links ( I understand),  I’ll tell ya it goes to Mal-Wart’s website, for a knockoff MH dollhouse made by Teamson Kids. It’s basically a KidKraft Barbie house with a repaint that’s vaguely gothic, kinda Victorian. Included furniture’s also very KidKraft-y, but it’s pink and black with skull and crossbones added as a motif. Found a nearly identical standard ‘pastel pink’ version that was $50. less, go figure. What’s neat is, every photo I’ve seen of it, there’s a boy playing with it ! Cool.

Since I’m still a bit off, stitch-wise, I ripped open the ‘jeans’ package of doll clothes from Dollar Tree and worked on them. They pretty much fit the MH body right out of the package, but the inseam was unraveling, there were threads everywhere, and the ankle hems didn’t even come close to meeting. Ok, it’s official – my sewing is *better* than DTree’s ! My efforts may not be perfect, but my pant legs’ inseams are nice and snug, and the hems usually match. I’ll have a go at the striped top and the strapless dress later tonight.

Ooogh. I think I ate too much ham. Gonna go lie down for a bit… 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

I'm having a slushy post-Christmas... no one ever sings that one.

Current Mood : Easing off my addiction to knockoff Robitussin...

Dearest Son’s bed finally surrendered to the ultimate last night, so we were on our way to Mal-Wart fairly early this morning. It felt so good to get out for a while. The snow had iced over, but was melting quickly, so the roads were unpredictable. A quick confession : we spun donuts and power slides with Venus-diesel in empty parking lots yesterday. Today it was just too chancy, so I’m glad we had a bit of scary-safe fun when we could. Today’s slides weren’t much on the ‘power’ side, and a bit more on the ‘scary’ one. I’m just glad Beloved Hubby was driving.

Luckily, the MH shelves were even more clear of product today than they were last time we went, so I wasn’t tempted a single whit. All they had were Ghouls Rule Abbeys, and I already have two of her character, Signature and I Love Fashion ! Oddly, the Barbie aisle was well-stocked, and Dearest found a bonus double-pack of ponies that would’ve cost at least $20. for $9.50, plus the never-seen ‘Apple Family’ set that is absolutely charming. That pretty much busted his allowance down to about where the rest of the family finances are, so it was funny to see him sigh and bemoan his ‘sooo broke’ status, while he was playing with his new ponies in his huge Barbie Dreamhouse.

Beloved’s Phi Theta Kappa honor society packet came in a few days ago, so we got a nice ‘floating’ frame for the certificate. And I scored a really pretty fat quarter ! Beloved and I decided to split a salad for lunch, and got Dearest what he wanted, along with some life-sustaining potato chips. I’m still not eating much, most everything tastes really salty to me now.

Tried to sew again, failed, and decided to rest a bit, play a while, and watch stupid stuff like Bridezillas on Netflix for the rest of the day. Changed Venus into the Dollar Tree dress I altered – but never photographed – which looked surprisingly good on her, at least to me ! Decided I liked for her to keep her vines, so at least the arm and leg ones will stay. The necklace one didn’t work with the dress neckline. You get that photo tomorrow. Hopefully by then, I’ll be healthy enough to sew straight again !  

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

I had a White and Green Christmas !

Current Mood : Joyful

We have a White Christmas ! We got an inch of snow on top of two hours of rain and slush, but it looks so beautiful. And, thanks to 7-11, we finally have a decent ice scraper. We somehow always lose those things.

We were all lazy today. Beloved Hubby let me sleep in ‘til noon, and I crashed at about 10pm last night. Dearest Son loved his gifts, and I even got one – they bought Venus for me ! They knew I didn’t have her, so I’m thrilled. She’s gorgeous ! I don’t know how I resisted her for so long…oh, that’s right. She’s the first one I’ve ever seen !

I can’t get over her hair – it’s lush and colorful, and so soft ! The flocked side is perfect, and I really like how it enhances her style. She has such dramatic eyes, too, and I hadn’t expected her hands to be sculpted with plantlike veins. She’s had some hair shed, but not much, and her earrings keep getting caught in her lush locks, but I’m amazed every time I look at her at how gorgeous she is. Beloved chose wisely !

We surprised him with the book of his choice on the tab – and it didn’t take him long to pick one, a scholastic, weighty tome he’s been digging into all day. But now that I’m feeling better – and ready to be awake for more than two hours in a row ! – I made sure he got some sleep.

While he rested, and Dearest played with his new haul, I tried to sew, since it’s kind of an indicator of my general health and well-being. Even wanting to sew is a good sign. Uh-oh. Guess I should have used a familiar pattern as a barometer, and not something completely new, since I bombed it. Both times. Maybe tomorrow will be better.

For now, though, I’m just gonna kick back with a Netflix – yaaay ! It’s back ! – episode of Law & Order and a mug of hot chocolate with a candy cane in it. They’re good in coffee, too. Gotta remember to stock up during the post-holiday markdowns.

Hope you have the silent night you yearn for. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

Treasures... I have so many !

Current Mood : Better but still bleh. 

Feeling a little better today, but I’m still sleeping a lot. At least my breathing has stabilized, so I’m not gasping, and the gunk down my windpipe has thinned considerably. Still hurts when I cough, but thanks to the cheap Tussin-swill, that’s not often. I swear, the worse that stuff tastes, the better it works. I hate Robitussin, and its millions of clones, but it always works for me. Beloved Hubby’s let me rest as much as I’ve needed, and Dearest Son is a little worried, but knows once I’ve had enough rest and medicine, I’ll be back to my usual weird self.

In the meanwhile, Dearest gave me the greatest gift today ! Before we went to those overpriced so-called ‘smart’ phones, I had a cute green flip one that I loved. Sure, it was a pain to text on it, but I loved the texture, and it’s clear, beautiful color. When we upgraded, I reluctantly passed it down to DMIL & FIL, where it would be a minor upgrade for one of them. When they upgraded, they gave it to Dearest to play with. Now that we’re back with cheaper phones, I admitted that I kinda missed my pretty green phone. So Dearest dug through his closets and found it ! It’s missing the battery, but we ordered one that should be in soon, and I had the old USB charger located in minutes. What a sweet guy I have !

Beloved Hubby also got a gift today – he doesn’t work again ‘til Friday ! And since school’s out, it’s been great to rest, hang out together, play games, and watch TV. Which has been great for me, as I’ve been so sick, I’ve been sleeping all day. I’m just glad we have the microwave and we just went grocery shopping, as my cooking would have been bad at best !

Oh, and if you'd like to make your own quote poster, like my silly effort, hit up Recite. Type in your words of wisdom, and choose the template you like best. So far, my favorite is 'Every artist was once an amateur'. 

Sunday, December 23, 2012

At least the box is festive - green and red...

Current Mood : Coughing so hard, I need to do laundry...

Woke up today with my throat so painful, I went back to sleep, and slept for hours. Beloved Hubby got me some Sprite and knockoff Robitussin, which has enabled me to half-drag through the day. Not much else going on, just hope you’re not ill !

Saturday, December 22, 2012

In the run-up to Christmas, I feel run out !

Current Mood : Bleh.

Today was a day of dawdle around and  watch TV kinda day at Chez Insanity. Helped Dearest Son clean his room, so we can fix his bed – it sprung a leak while FIL was here, and my spot-fix isn’t holding anymore. Beloved Hubby performed a more serious operation on the thing, we’ll see if it holds. At least it happened when we can afford to replace it, if necessary !

Still haven’t opened the MH Deluxe Fashion Sets. You’d think I’d be all over those, that was all I wanted when the photos – along with the Scaris photos - were released. I’m wondering if yesterday took more out of me than I thought, I don’t wanna sew, or play with the new tablet, or read, or anything – I just wanna sleep. 

Friday, December 21, 2012

Deuce's Christmas !

Current Mood : Happy.

Today was Scaris Deuce day ! He got two Christmas presents – a pair of jeans from Michelle and sandals from Ken. ‘Michelle’ was a $3. narrow-boxed Lovely Patsy-style blow-molded doll from Dollar General. While I liked her purple bangs, her vacant expression wasn’t helping my decision. Bought her anyway, although all I wanted were her jeans, but Dearest Son claimed Michelle, her blouse, her jacket, both pair of shoes, and her purse. The jacket was kinda nice, and looks good on his Toralei, but the hood stitches were already loose when I took it out of the package. I’ll ninja-repair it once he’s in bed. Done it before. Need to move the Velcro ™ over a bit on the jeans, which is common, but they fit Deuce fine as-is, so having a ‘just because’ surprise for Dearest and the jeans are well worth the three bucks.

Hit TRU early, as Dearest bought some ponies with his allowance that I’d already bought for Christmas. We told him he had some ponies coming, but he wouldn’t be swayed. Left early to avoid traffic – too late. The roads and parking lots were insane, but the stores themselves weren’t bad at all. My returns went smoother than their sale did ! Refund in hand, I snagged a Ken tuxedo he liked, and I bought a more casual outfit with cool black sandals, hoping they’d fit Deuce and the dudes. Plus, Dearest has two guys who needed shirts.

Turned out, the sandals mostly fit Deuce, they were just a bit too tight. So I soaked ‘em in boiling water for a few minutes, fished ‘em out and put ‘em on still wet. Much better. They still fit later, when I took ‘em off and put them on again. Oddly, the Ken shorts in the same pack barely fit a soft-legged Ken doll Dearest has. He couldn’t sit with the Velcro closed. Dearest said he’d save ‘em for his MH guys. Hooded ‘Malibu’ shirt fit fine, though. Just wished the black ‘miniblind’ shades fit the MH head, I love the 80s vibe of those things.

Got to see all three of the Ghouls Alive! dolls while I was there. Don’t want any of them, but it was about all our TRU had – and only one Frankie and Spectra, and two Clawdeens. A few Ghouls Rule dolls lingered, but the surplus of Skull Shores Ghoulia and DracuLauras have been completely wiped out. Ours was even sold out of the school playsets ! There were four Coffin Bean playsets, three scooters, and two bathrooms, both without dolls. Everything else was either cosmetic or electronic. It occurred to me that I now had a device I could use the Aptivity devices on, but completely forgot to look for them in the store. Plus, I didn’t wanna be there all day.

But, of the three GA! ghouls, I really liked Clawdeen the best. Seeing her eyes close was so cool, and her howl was straight out of the cartoon webisodes. While she’s really wicked awesome, it’s still a gimmick, and I’ve already have enough of that behind me from my Barbie days. Still, if I find her in a flea market or thrift store – mine ! And to be brutal truthful, seeing a skull in Frankie’s head when she ‘sparks’ was kinda creepy.

You may have noticed I haven’t opened the Deluxe Fashion Packs yet. Yeah, I’m kinda hoarding them for later – but now that the planet’s still spinning, I think I’ll start in in the next day or two. Those funny Mayans, playin’ a trick on us ! LOL. 

Thursday, December 20, 2012

My cheap-azz gift to you – a digital Christmas mix tape !

Current Mood : Well-fed and sleepy. 

I went through several ‘ultimate Christmas’ playlists in the past few days, hardly ever seeing anything I’m not yawn-bored with – I mean, yeah, Bing Crosby’s White Christmas  is a standard, a classic, the genre-definer, yatta-yatta. But I’m a whiny creature, and can only listen to the same twelve songs over and over every year without shrugging in boredom and disinterest, then crabbing about it on my blog. I have my own classics, so if you don’t mind, I’d like to share them, via YouTube links, with you.

Side A

This Christmas – Donny Hathaway

Christmas Can-Can – Straight No Chaser

Skater’s Waltz - AnyaAngie

Merry Christmas, Darling – The Carpenters

Carol of the Bells - ThePianoGuys

Lego 12 Pains of Christmas – Bob Rivers and Momaws77 (Dearest Son approved !)

Last Christmas – Wham!

Santa Baby – Eartha Kitt

Silver Bells – Glenn Miller Orchestra

Christmas Waltz – The Carpenters

Sleigh Ride – John Williams & The Boston Pops

12 Days of Christmas – Straight No Chaser

Stille Nacht – Mannheim Steamroller

Side B

So. Something for everyone, and more if you’re old enough to lift a lip in despair for years past and bills coming. Love to hear your forgotten classics and favorite moderns ! 

Therapy went well, and so did my annual Dr. appointment. It wasn’t in-depth, as my heart and lung functions seem to be holding steady, so all the more advanced tests aren’t necessary for a while yet. Wanna know what’s funny ? I got my labs done early, so I could have my first bite of food since midnight at about 1pm– and I wasn’t hungry. I’d kept well-hydrated with water, even had a snack in my purse, and while everyone else’s chow smelled good, I wasn’t gonna give in until I got the nod.

Until we stopped at Aldi’s on the way home. Oh, boy, just looking at it all made us ravenous, so you know we got tons of treats ! I snagged a huge bag of apples, and two giant stalks of 59c celery – so crunchy and green. As well as a nice big ham for next Tuesday. I pulled some leftovers out to make space in the fridge for all the largesse, then called ‘em lunch and ate ‘em. Washed some work clothes for Beloved Hubby and dozed off on the sofa.

I got loads of housework to do, so I think I’m gonna skip sewing tonight. But that means I’ll have tomorrow ! 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Crescent comes out to play !

Current Mood : Anxious

Inspired by recent events
at Chez Insanity.
Well, they released DMIL from the hospital this afternoon, far too early in my opinion. She has a diagnosis and part of the medical issue at hand has been repaired, but she looks weary to the bone, still has a grey cast to her skin, and could barely move her right side at all. And the long, hard part – lifestyle change – hasn’t even begun yet. It has to start soon or she’ll be right back there in a month or two. (sigh) Not a darn thing Beloved Hubby or I can do but drive them home, encourage her, and hope for the best for all concerned.

Finally got some laundry done, just in time for tomorrow’s therapy and annual doctor visit. Ugh. You already know I’m not gonna sleep tonight, I never do before anything medical, no matter how benign I know it will be.

On the plus side, I’m trading again – a pair of MH shoes that looked a lot better in the promo photos than they did on any of my dolls, and some hosiery I’ve never used for the Trapper-Keeper notebooks that come with three of the Photo Day dolls, the ‘boombox’ bag from Dance Class Howleen, and the cute grey beret from Scaris Rochelle Goyle. She must really like those shoes more than I ever did ! Should have my lot in the mail tomorrow – she’s a big fan of DracuLaura, so I added some of those postcards of her that I had. Also some stickers.

Oh, and it looks like I’m getting my wish this year ! Ever since 2011, I’ve looked for MH Valentines on store shelves, hoping. What I most wanted was the kind with pencils, like what already exists for most kid-friendly franchises like Disney Princesses and Thomas the Tank Engine. Hey, we just got Valentine’s classroom-exchange cards last year – and if this image on Consumerist is right, I get the pencils this year ! Yaaay !

Although it is a bit sad to realize I can recognize MH packaging in such a small photo filled with other products that quickly…

Too strung out to sew tonight, so I hope to give it a go tomorrow. I kinda wanna know if I can get that Etsy dress right…

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

If they don't take away my PaintShopPro after this lame joke, I don't think they ever will.

Current Mood : Relieved and joyful

Got to see DMIL this morning – she had some procedures scheduled, and she looked a little better, so I hope she’s soon feeling well again. Don’t think she’s leaving tomorrow, though. She still seems as weak as a newborn kitten. FIL was most grateful last night, and I figured now was as good a time as any to let things go and be as gracious as my Aunt L., the epitome of southern charm and gentility. I still loathe his choices and actions over the summer, but that was months ago, and his wife is seriously ill. Not doin’ any good to hold and carry grudges at a time like this. I’d want everyone to treat Beloved Hubby as kindly as possible, so I did the right thing, instead of being a shrew. Don’t think this is a permanent Life Change or nothin’.

Shortly after midnight, everything was quiet and everyone was in bed, except for Beloved (working) and me (waiting for Beloved). Couldn’t settle my mind down to read or play a game, so I sewed a bit. Knew I wasn’t ready for Version 2 of the Etsy dress, so I snagged that ribbon-tie halter camisole adaptation and sewed it, figuring on using some more white-on-white holly scraps and leaving the bottom hem mostly open to turn it right-side-out from, instead of the side / back closures. Sewed up OK, but the camisole came out more tube-like, since I didn’t shape it by altering the back closures on the fly like last time. Green ribbon gave it a splash of color and a bit more festive appearance, so I ended up liking it.

My eyes caught the slinky glint of the ruffled, gathered gold trim I’d bought on impulse – and erroneous belief that it was on sale ! – at Hobby Lobby last time I went. Turned out ‘trim’ is only ‘trim’ (and hence, on sale) if it’s on a cardboard spool, not a plastic reel or frame. Hmpft. In any case, it’s quite pretty, if not just a smidge tacky, and since it was already gathered, it’d make a quick skirt or sleeve. I held it up to my fitting doll and, wow, was that stuff thin. I could read my keyboard through it. You’d think it was made of real gold ! Completely transparent, but if it was doubled, not so. Measured out a generous length, added a half-inch to one and an inch to the other, and cut two strips of the stuff, one about five and a half, the other about six inches long. Hand- sewed ‘em together, one under the other, then machine-sewed ‘em to the hem of the camisole. Came out pretty cute ! You get to see that tomorrow.

It really was a great day. Ginger-kitty, who prefers an indoor-outdoor life, hadn’t come back for a week. We worried about her, but figured she’d sought shelter with another family, and kept the hope she’d come back sometime, next to her food and water dishes. While I had the door open for nice weather after visiting DMIL, she strolled in like she owned the joint, just like when we met. She ate and slept. Woke up, ignored the lot of us, and ate, then slept. Awoke again two hours later, and repeated the previous. About 5pm, she decided to hang out a bit, inspect everyone still awake, then curl up for another post-snack nap with Dearest Son on the sofa.

And I confess, the door was also partially open because UPS was due to deliver my MH Deluxe Doll Fashions – a day early, yaaay ! You’ll get photos of those soon, but for now, here’s a bonus treat, the back of the packages’ art ! Enjoy !

Monday, December 17, 2012

HooDude is in the House !!!

Current Mood : Wheeeee ! 

Whoops ! Forgot I was supposed to post that pseudo-comic I made from Scaris Deuce’s box liner a couple days ago. Mind if I share it tomorrow ? I wanna share HooDude now ! Yaaaay ! He arrived this afternoon, along with his stand, MH stickers, a pencil I didn’t have, and several of those postcards – a lot of them images of the guys, Lagoona, and Ghoulia ! I’ll be sharing those, too.

Isn’t he charming ? The ‘Dude My Froggy Stuff shows how to create on YouTube is so cute, and in some ways better, but I doubt my version would look nearly as good. So I’m really happy to have this one. In her photos, my trade partner showed that one lock of ‘hair’ folded up under another, which put it in his ‘eyes’, and I thought it was so endearing, I hope to keep it that way, always.

Froggy’s has pipe cleaners for a skeleton, which makes him poseable. The official Mattel one is as floppy as yer average Raggedy Ann, but without the bend-seams. And tight-packed stuffing. He’s posed here with a pin, which makes me uncomfortable. Yes, I’m upset for sticking a voodoo-inspired doll, because I don’t want to hurt him. (sigh)

DMIL was admitted to the hospital today, and my heart just went out to an exhausted FIL when we went to visit. So he’s staying with us tonight, as the hospital is less than three miles from Chez Insanity. Beloved Hubby will take him back tomorrow morning, and we’re hoping she’ll be home Wednesday. She’s not in Intensive (or Critical, where they always stuck me) but needs a bit more care, so here’s hoping for the best.

So I’m gonna wrap things up early – I doubt I’ll sew tonight, but I can’t wait for tomorrow ! Hopefully DMIL will feel better after her tests, and Amazon sez my three Deluxe Fashion Packs may be in via UPS then ! 

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Wonderful Sunday !

Current Mood : Oh, yeah !!!

Well, I guess I can tell you what Beloved Hubby got for Christmas – it was a specialty Samsung Galaxy 2 tablet, darn near made for scholars. The included reader devices made some of his scholarly books suddenly much cheaper, and included features that’d make writing papers and cross-referencing books a snap. He loves it, and soon had a koi pond screen-saver app and several driving / racing games downloaded to it, then he accessed our Netflix account and watched an episode of Lie To Me. Wow. I was impressed.

What impressed me even more was a free-but-sponsored knock-off Bejeweled game that was both addictive and sharable. Seriously, at one point, all of us were on the sofa, poking at groups of star-shapes before the awful Star Trek alarm sounded. Four – or even six ! – eyes are better than two on those things. I think we kinda made the game mad because we jammed it several times, but I wouldn’t trade those cuddly sofa times for nothin’.

Anyway. Reason I’m telling you all this is that today, I woke up to a surprise – breakfast and an exhortation to get dressed, we had a special errand to run this morning. He drove us to Best Buy, where we picked up an already-paid-for Samsung Galaxy 2 ! We’re now a two-tablet family ! I went nutz – and probably snagged $200. worth of free books, everything from regional fairy tales to cheezy Christmas romance to digitized classic literature, and darn near anything in between. Including free books on where to find more free books ! I can get almost the whole library of Mercedes Lackey or those awful Lisl Harrison Monster High books if I want – it just kinda ranks to pay more for Kindle versions than I would for used hardbacks, but the appeal of searchable text, bookmarks and highlighting, instant delivery, and portability is hard to deny.

I figured I had a month or so to read all these free words before they vanished, since there’s fresh new books for free every day. But, no, I ‘own’ those books forever ! In fact, I’m not even sure how to delete them. Gotta look into that…

Anyway. I slept, played, read, downloaded, daydreamed. What a great day ! Dearest Son found some Lego games and happily created until his eyes got tired. I was feeling a bit restless, so I finally got off my duff and sewed.

Remember back a few weeks, when we were broke ? Stay tuned, in a few more days, we will be again ! (grin)  Anyway. I found a MH dress on Etsy I really liked, and I didn’t have a pattern for it. Seller sold dresses, not patterns. I thought I’d just shell out the ten bucks and snag one, take it apart and make my own, when the funds became available.

But you know me, I’m impatient. Especially when I’m broke, for some reason. Since a good chunk of the dress’ appeal was its vintage Barbie style, I dug around in my pattern files. And I found one that’d work, but I really hadn’t tried shrinking Babs’ patterns to MH scale. Played with pattern sizing until I had something that looked about right…and stopped. We had funds ! Yet, I couldn’t just buy the dress until I tried my pattern first, although it took me quite a long time to work up the interest and patience to do it – and today was the day !

To make a long story short (too late !), there it is, on Frankie. It’s mostly OK, although I futzed with it for so long – nearly three hours – that the white-on-white fabric is mostly grey. Learned that it doesn’t take to a lot of handling, and rip-outs and resews leave their mark. I used a thinner-than-usual seam allowance, so the fit is not as snug as it could be, so I may remake it with a regular quarter-inch one. I also think the original has the shoulder straps sewn as underarm seams, which means the straps are sewn to the bodice before the side seams. So I need to remember to try that, too. On the whole, though, I’m fairly pleased. Just saved us a quick ten bucks !

That’ll buy a lot of digital koi fish and several Kindle books…