Thursday, November 29, 2012

Small time sewing

Hans finally earned a full week of vacation so we cast off our dock lines and sailed (actually the wind was in the wrong direction so we motored) away for Thanksgiving.  We ended up anchoring for the holiday and I'm happy to report we enjoyed a roasted turkey breast, real mashed potatoes, and stuffing for dinner, and homemade apple pie for dessert.
I love our stove!

I have to admit though that I'm still not used to these warm winter months and I have difficulty comprehending that Christmas isn't that far away.  I just need to bite the bullet and get what little shopping I do out of the way.  But I also have to keep in mind that anything I buy will need to fit into a carry on bag since we'll be flying home for the holidays.

I've been itching to sew now that the weather has cooled to the point where I can use my iron without fear of sweating to death.  However, it's now too late to make anything of real consequence, like maybe flannel quilty things for my kids and I've found myself involved in a wallet making marathon.  

Monopoly money, Poochies , Pet paw prints, and a Life ring

The Life ring one is mine!

All opened up
Still mine
So, who am I supposed to give these wallets to anyway?  I think I'll give them to our friends at Wilbur's Dog Park, except we have more friends there than wallets so I better get busy making more.

I love taking Wilbur to the park and I make sure to go at the same time every day.  I started this habit hoping that if the same people saw my wild pit bull on a daily basis they'd get used to him and not see him as a potential killing machine (really).  Well, after a year, Wilbur has worked his way into many hearts (he's truly known as the kissing bandit) and when newcomers to the park arrive and Wilbur does his usual zoomy greeting at the gate (you can literally see the alarm on some people's faces),  I rarely have to say a thing because someone else usually pipes up and informs these newbies that Wilbur is quite harmless.

The Killing Machine after a day of playing at the park

And I have to tell you I love this wallet; even though it only has two credit card slots you can cram a lot more than that into them; there's room for paper money, and it also has a velcro coin pocket.

I just remembered, one of the cute little cashiers at my local Winn-Dixie thinks my wallet is adorable so I really want to make one for her and I should probably make sure her co-workers don't feel left out.

This is what I call therapy sewing.

It keeps me off the streets.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Yet One More Pot Holder

Tomorrow is Departure Day for a couple we've become friends with here at our marina. They decided a year or so ago to sell everything and move onto a boat and the fact that they had no sailing experience didn't stop them.  They now live on a 43' monohull with their calico cat and with a lot of sailing lessons behind them they are heading for the Bahamas and then who knows where.

And imagine how fun it was for me to discover that Sally also sews. Actually she sews a lot and her work is really very nice. She's made Sunbrella covers for nearly everything on the boat including their anchor! Her husband is always coming up with something he thinks she should sew and I warned him if he doesn't stop she'll probably be glad to make a body bag for him  She also made all their cockpit cushions (something I would never attempt) and they are very professional looking.  They lucked into a couple of old sails and Sally's made some really great bags out of them like the ones you see for more than a hundred dollars in catalogs.

But anyway they are leaving (insert very sad face here) and Hans told me I should make something for them. I told him no because Sally can already make anything they need and since her work is so neat and precise I'd be embarrassed to have her see my stuff up close. I decided on a bottle of champagne until last week when we were enjoying cocktail hour(s) in their cockpit they mentioned they've been given at least 3 bottles of the stuff along with the bottle their son gave them back for their 25th wedding anniversary (they just celebrated their 32nd and I'm impressed with how much fun they still have together as a couple).
With that idea out the window I threw caution to the wind and went ahead and made a couple of pot holders  with a nautical theme (from this tutorial).


No this is not a pot holder
The weather here seemed to go from hellishly hot to wonderful just like that! We now have very cool evenings and mornings and poor Wilbur is puzzled. After I dropped Hans off at work today and came home, I was met by a trembling pit bull. Honestly, he trembles when he gets cold and apparently 60 degrees doesn't feel good on his tender pitty flesh. I had to cover him with a blanket.

There will be no sled dog races in this pooch's future!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Boat Sewing and a Good Citizenship Award.

First of all I want everyone to know that I'm doing my very best to be a good U.S. citizen (and NO! I don't mean I'm leaving the country so there will be one less idiot running around).

Today I voted.
And last week I had jury duty.

My voting experience went quite smoothly although for some reason there's a notation in the records that I 'need assistance'(?). This same thing happened to me last year when I voted in the primaries and I thought the situation had been resolved. So I filled out the necessary paperwork again and please note; one must leave one's sense of humor at home when voting. My, "Well, I'm a blond" response as a reason for needing assistance was met with stony silence.
They probably threw out my ballot.

Jury duty was a tiny bit more entertaining.  After watching a video and learning the rules of how to be a good juror we were given a small break before court commenced. Of course there was an immediate line outside the ladies room and at the head of it was a very large woman sitting importantly on her little rascal scooter. Turning to us she announced that she was going to check out the availability of stalls.  We all watched as she dismounted and on the tiniest feet (encased in little elfin slippers) I've ever seen on an adult she tottered to the door, opened it, took a gander and then boomed back to us, "STANDING ROOM ONLY! STANDING ROOM ONLY!"  Once she was re-seated she took her role as Potty Police to heart. While leaning dangerously far from her perch in order to get a better look, she yelled "CLOSE THE DOOR!" towards the men's room.
Potential jurors continued milling about and she scared the living daylights out of one gentleman when she shouted at him, "DO YOU NEED TO USE THE RESTROOM? SIR! I SAID DO YOU NEED TO USE THE RESTROOM?  I CAN SEE AN EMPTY SPOT IN THERE!"   "Um, no?" was his timid response. "WELL YOU LOOKED LIKE YOU NEEDED TO" she harrumphed. "CLOSE THE DOOR!" she demanded again as she swiveled around.
By now I and the lady in front of me were shaking from trying not to laugh. "Oh God, I know she'll end up on my panel." she groaned. "And guess who'll be the foreman." I answered.
Just then a lady exiting the bathroom informed us via raised eyebrows and a look of confusion that there were many stalls available.
Shortly thereafter my number was called and as I left the room I had to pass by the Potty Police.  She was busy scanning the room and clutched in her hands were a # 2 pencil (I haven't seen one of those in a long time) and a pad of paper.
No doubt keeping detailed accounts of our indiscretion's and toilet habits.

Here in Florida only 6 jurors are needed per trial and needless to say as one of the twenty two chosen to start, I was not picked or my day would have been a whole lot more interesting.

Anyway, on to some sewing. Two years ago I made slip covers for our settee.  I made them out of old king sized sheets left over from Hans' dad's estate.  They served their purpose quite well but were really getting worn out so I decided to make new ones.
I ended up getting some upholstery fabric on sale for a total cost of around $35.00.  I also recovered Wilbur's pillow in a blue and white stripe.  Of course it was only after I finished his pillow that I noticed a note in the selvage 'Dry Cleaning Recommended'.
Yes, I made a doggy pillow out of Dry Clean Only fabric.
Good news though, I washed it already and hung it up to dry and it's just fine.

 I will admit something here. The fabric on the  long cushions are only fitted on the top and sides. I actually have it pinned to the cushion in the back and on the bottom. Luckily it's working.

I'm glad I covered these starting way back when because you wouldn't believe how discolored they became from sweat and body oil, and of course the dog. The original cushions are still in good condition.

I would like these new covers to stay clean as I don't think I should be washing them all the time so I found this quilt at Home Goods for $29.00!! It's actually pretty nice and I don't mind if it gets dirty. I can throw it over my new covers on days that we are extra hot and sweaty which is basically all the time.  However, I do have to admit that someone threw a switch around the beginning of the month and we are now enjoying wonderful weather.

Oink Oink