Sunday, March 23, 2008

more sewing done

This is the quilt I made for Ashley for her birthday. It was actually supposed to be for her first birthday, but somehow I goofed and missed it. I did make her a dress or two, I think, but she didn't have a quilt that fit any more. Now she does.

These are the boxers I made for my son in law for his birthday. He laughed when he saw them. He let the boys pick out the first pair he wore. Kenny picked the two-colored fish ones. I did get a message from Abby that he said they are extremely comfortable and soft. That, I'm sure, comes from using quilt-shop-quality fabric.

This is my gray-and-white set. Hubby really likes the look of these. They are really comfy, but the foldover elastic hasn't got the same stretchability as the old fashioned elastic you put in casings, so the whole set is a bit more relaxed than the first one is. Still, I really like it. It's nice to have stuff that fits.

I have another bra cut out now. I dyed the pieces and they are almost dry. This is the smaller pattern that I had ordered because my size didn't come in the smaller cup. I had to add 2 inches to the band in the back. I did it in several places so hopefully it won't be really obvious where I did the alterations.

I have Jimmy's quillow cut out, and - I think - 5 shopping bags made of denim to take grocery shopping with me. I got 5 bags out of 2 yards, and the fabric was only $2 a yard at Chinamart, so they cost me $0.40 cents apiece plus thread and labor. Not bad! I'm just tired of all the plastic. We throw away so much stuff in this society...

My tummy has been upset tonight. I stayed up till it settled down so I didn't keep hubby awake with getting up and down to go to the bathroom. Now that it's pretty much quiet, and I'm pretty much half frozen, I think I'll go to bed.

A blessed Easter to you all.

Monday, March 10, 2008

a new addition to the family

This is Buddy Boy. He is a Transylvanian Naked Neck rooster. The breed is also know as the Turken. The most obvious feature of the Turken is the lack of neck feathers. In its place is skin the same dark red as the comb and wattles. Females are like this, too, but they lack the pretty tail feathers.

We got Buddy Boy from the Longmeadow Rescue Ranch in Union, Missouri. He had been there since last summer when he and his flockmates were confiscated. I don't know the circumstances, but I do know that all the rest of the flock had been adopted, but Buddy Boy was still there.

I had been watching him off and on for a while; several months, in fact. I'd go to the site to see if he'd been adopted and time after time, he was still there. Last week I got this really strong urge to see if he was still available and if he was, to adopt him. After my experience with Jeb and his temper, I wasn't sure I wanted to try this again. However, I prayed about it, and still felt led to give him a home.

Buddy is great with the girls. He must feel he's in chicken heaven. He was in an 8-by-10 kennel with two ducks and a goose, I think. There were only 4 other chickens there, one light Brahma rooster and a pair of banties. He and the Brahma didn't get along at all, which isn't really uncommon for roosters, so they had been separated from each other.

We gave him a few minutes when we got home so that he could get used to the presence of other chickens and catch his breath from the shock of the ride home and his new environment. I couldn't stand it any longer so I let him go. He and the hens hit it off right away and they have taken to each other incredibly well. He is gentle with them, never attacking them or forcing himself on them when they're not in the mood for his affections. He is also very mellow with me. He looks at me, watching me closely, and keeps his distance, but doesn't charge or attempt to attack me at all.

The first night I went out to check on them before I went to bed and he was on the top roost with some of the other girls, all snuggled down in between the two most dominant hens. They've shown him the ropes and he seems to be adjusting well. In exchange, he has made them happy by his presence and the protection he offers to his ladies.

I haven't figured out one of their little oddities; the girls pulled a few of his feathers out Saturday and yesterday. He didn't object at all. I'm thinking maybe it's their way of testing his health and making sure he's an appropriate guardian.

This morning I took them some old banana bread and he called them to it, watching to make sure they all had some before he took a few bites. He did the same with the lettuce I took them about an hour ago.

I'm really glad I took a chance and gave Buddy Boy a new home. I know the people at the Rescue Ranch only have so much room and sometimes the birds or other animals have to be euthanized if there isn't enough room for all of them and one or another has been there a long time without being adopted. A lot of people don't want roosters. They either have enough already or just want the hens for eggs. Still, he has made my hens much more content. He's quite a gentleman with them and they aren't as stressed as they were with Jeb here. He's at least 2 years old; quite possibly older. I think maybe it's a split between his innate temperament and the fact that he is no longer a teenager.

I look forward to seeing my pretty new rooster for a long time to come.

For anyone looking for a pet of any kind, try the Humane Society or other shelters in your area. The animals there deserve a chance to have a loving home and a place where they can feel they belong. All 3 of our cats were rescues as well, and if I ever get another pet, you can bet it will be a rescue.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

my winter dresses

This is my most recently constructed jumper. It's from a pattern I've used before but when I used it the first time I gathered the skirt instead of using the pleats. It turns out the pleats are far more flattering and I like the fit much better.

I made this dress before Christmas. The cotton is heavyweight so it works well for wintertime. I was unaware of how heavy it was when I ordered it off the internet. It would not have worked well for a quilt but it was great for a winter dress.

This jumper I made about a month ago. I got the fabric from a thrift store for $3. The pattern is extremely simple. However, I didn't have enough fabric for the facings so I used some broadcloth I had lying around instead, and I had to do without the pockets and the ties. Still, it is very comfy and warm.

This dress I made after the blue one above. I wasn't sure I liked the cuffs on the blue one so for this I used elastic in the sleeves instead. I'd rather use the cuffs. They're not as snug and don't slide up the arms as easily.

All told, a nice winter wardrobe when added to my skirts, mock turtlenecks, sweaters and sweatshirts. The addition of a flannel half slip and leggings or longjohns and warm socks is about all I needed.

Now I just need to work on some more summer dresses.

Monday, March 3, 2008

more goodies

The pics above are of one of my triangle headcoverings. I have two of the blue ones. One has white lace and the other has beige. I have one that is white with blue flowers, and I have one that is an ecru tone on tone print with beige lace. I like them and wear them most days.

This next covering is a rounded short covering. I wear this one to church when I go or when I'm in a mood to cover more of my hair. I modified the triangle I'd made and played with it a bit till I found the way I liked it. I only have this one in navy with white lace.

This covering is for long and/or thick hair. My daugter's hair is extraordinarily thick, like my sister's, and it is hard to find something that she can wear over it for chores or whatever that won't be too tight or come sliding off. This one has two snaps underneath and the effect is that the hair doesn't touch the neck until about the level of the neckband on a t-shirt.

This is the new bra I made today. It is modified from the pattern I bought and while it fits me better than the first one did, I am still having trouble with cup size. I am thinking of just sticking with the leisure style bras since I don't wear things that are revealing enough to worry about bra straps showing anyhow, and I'm not active enough to worry about support or what have you. I'm trying another pattern in the next few days and that will determine whether I just switch to the leisure patterns or if the other pattern will work better for me.

I promised hubby I'd go to be early so I'd better toddle off. Tomorrow is supposed to be nasty so I can spend lots of time sewing. I have lots of ideas already.

Blessings to you and yours...

Sunday, March 2, 2008

in the thick of sewing

I finally got off my butt this week and made a leisure bra and panty set. I've had the patterns for oh, I'd say a good two years or so, and I hadn't done a thing with them until last week. I do that; I'll buy patterns I know I want to use eventually but it may take several years before the urge strikes me to make that specific item. All I need to do then is find where I put the pattern, locate the fabric I got to make it up with, and I'm set.

Part of it is that the adjustment to my Methadone dosage has given me the ability to sew more than basic straight seams again. My pain level is lower, and I'm sleeping a bit better. Both of those things help a lot when it comes to concentrating on 1/4 inch seams, layers and layers of slick slippery fabric, and the agony of stretch needles.

The first pic is the bra, obviously. It was pretty simple to make. I am going to modify the next one by moving the hooks over to the edge of the front piece instead of 1/2 inch or so inside. I don't like the way the ends stick out and if the hooks are right there that won't happen.

The panties are from the same pattern company but they required a bit more finagling since I have no backside to speak of, a larger than ideal abdomen due to size and weight loss, and the fact that I am not a tall large woman - I just got the large part of the equation down, not the tall. I altered the backside both widthwise and lengthwise, and added a bit to the tummy to make it more yielding, and then shortened the waist a bit so they fit me instead of some Amazon I never met.

It's nice having panties and a bra that were not only made just for me, but that actually fit me. They are made of a nylon or satin Lycra with stretch lace elastic. They do have the obligatory white cotton crotch for cleanliness and absorbency issues. Only 3 pattern pieces and much easier than I thought. A couple more pair and I won't need to look at the instructions at all. The same with the bra.

I'm waiting on stretch lace elastic to come in but I'm not seeing any. I'm starting to wonder if I ordered enough or if I need to get more.


Abby and I checked out a different church this morning. The music was on key if a bit boring, which is an improvement. I just didn't feel like the people were there because they wanted to be, but because it was expected of them, and that makes me uneasy. Some of the things the pastor said bothered me. I'm not sure I'll go back to that one. There are several others we can try out in the area. Now that we're able to visit more of them, we can take our time and let our spirits lead us to the right one for us. It may take a while. The churches out in this area aren't at all what I'm used to and I'm going to have to do some adjusting, too.

I guess I should go take a nap. I'm really tired. Blessings and have a good week.