Sunday, June 28, 2009

blog #304 >> This Weekend

It seems like I had a busy weekend, but really I think I just got a lot done.

The garden is all weeded, well I suppose the weeding is never really finished, but at least it's under control.

Here are the little green tomatoes that are starting to pop up on the tomato plants.

This is the monster head of lettuce that volunteered itself from last year's crop.

The strawberries are slowing down, but they also seem to be getting bigger. I've been freezing them all season for jam.

There is the random sunflower growing in the beans that I didn't plant. But I'm excited to see it start blooming.

I think my strawberry rhubarb jam turned out. I'm not really sure yet. It tastes great and I'm happy to say that all of the jars sealed, but it's not set up yet. I read the wrong page of the recipe and added the sugar at the wrong time. But I think it will be alright. The little bit of extra that I put in the frig. set up perfectly. And the jam in the jars is still warm, so it may just need more time. I've made jam before, but I've always made freezer jelly in the past and that's less temperamental. I'm just going to need to be patient and wait until it cools.

Here are the rhubarb slices that I thought looked like kitty faces.

This is my messy kitchen. I think I'll be cleaning sugar off my floor for weeks.

And here is the finished jam!

Let's see... other than making jam, it was Little Miss. Ada's first birthday. She did very well and didn't cry when we all sang to her and she even said bye-bye and waved when people left. She was certainly the queen of the party.

Oh, and this is the giant wasp that was stuck in my window when I got home. You can't tell in this picture, but it was really, REALLY BIG! I've never seen a wasp or bee this big in America. I remember when I was in Czech the bees were enormous and I'd run and get a Czech student and show them the giant bees and ask why they were so big. And they would all just look at me like I was crazy... Well, I guess I am a little, but I do wonder how they got to be so big... I suppose it could be a queen? Maybe? I hope she doesn't decide to make a nest in my window. I'd like to open it tonight.

And finally here is the vintage poodle pin the neighbors gave me. Thanks!

Well, that pretty much covers my random blog post about my weekend.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

blog #303 >> Mrs. Annabelle Witzel

Here she is! Mrs. Annabelle Witzel.
And I finished her just in time for Miss. Ada's birthday.
I've attached the bird softie pattern I made for her just in case someone wants it.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

blog #302 >> The Perfect Earrings

I finally made them! The perfect earrings and it was so much easier than trying to find them. I just needed to make a trip to the bead store. And I was even able to buy just two of everything, so I wouldn't have a bunch of half used bead packages. The whole project cost me $2.80. It was definitely the right way to go.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

blog #301 >> Television Lust

If I ever win the lottery this is what I'm buying...

Years ago I found this beauty at an antique store for $200. And I still to this day regret not buying it. But $200 was a lot of money for me at the time. I was still in high school or maybe it was my first year of college... it's hard to remember. But I didn't exactly have a place to keep, or really a need for a television either. I did happen to have my camera with me though so I took a picture to remember it by...

But look! Now you can buy an atomic television set that's new! In the exact same model too! They're in COLOR, and they're dvd/cable/HDTV ready, and you can customize the colors they come in, and they've even got a remote control!

Only you know when it doesn't have a price on it... it's going to be really, Really, REALLY expensive. I couldn't find a price anywhere on the website but they did say they cost less than the original Philco Predicta of 1958 (indexed for inflation) or as much as a high-end television would cost today. Well, with a little research I discovered that the original cost anywhere between $269.95 - $459.95 depending on the model. So after doing some math on a handy dandy inflation calculator I figured out that $300 in 1958 is roughly $2209.73 today. So, unfortunately that's not a television in my price range. I also really don't need a new television. I have a nice one now, that I hardly watch as it is. But perhaps... someday... I'll buy the television of my dreams.

See offical site here:

Friday, June 19, 2009

blog #300 >> Driving in Oregon - 1953's summertime and I'm ready to get away! I'm ready for a road trip... I wish I had a nice old rusty car again... I wish I had a time machine!

Anyhow, if I went on a road trip in 1953, these would be some of the postcards I'd send you.


Sunday, June 14, 2009

blog #299 >> How To: Make a Skirt
from an Old Coat

Up from the scraps of a ruined coat it rose and took shape and formed... a skirt!

Here is the frumpy old coat I bought at "The Bins" and how I turned it into a skirt and a bag. And they turned out quite nice at that. It was the exact fabric I've been looking for, and I figured this way my skirt was half sewn for me already. Here's the inspiration skirt I fell in love with months ago.

It reminds me of "Joseph had a Little Overcoat" a Jewish tale about Joseph who had an old worn-out overcoat. First he cut off the bottom and turned it into a jacket. Then the jacket got worn out so he turned it into a vest. Then the vest got old and tattered so he turned it into a scarf. When the scarf got old he turned it into a handkerchief. And when at last the handkerchief was no longer usable, he made that into a button. One day he lost the button. And he was so sad that he wrote a song about it. Which just goes to show you, you really can make something out of nothing!


Monday, June 8, 2009

blog #298 >> THE BINS

Today, I broke my Goodwill ban. It had been 71 days, 9 hours and 17 minutes since my last trip to Goodwill. After that trip, I realized they had doubled all their prices and got rid of most of their children's books. Quite frankly, that was it for me. I quit my Goodwill addiction cold turkey; however, I knew I couldn't last. Although there are many other decent second hand stores out there, Mike's and Village Merchants among them, none can compare to Goodwill's ever changing selection. I'm actually surprised I held out as long as I did. But I figured "The Bins" wouldn't be nearly as expensive as the regular Goodwill and I thought they might have moved their old children's books there.
I was right!

"The Bins" is an amazing place!
You could spend all day there and never see the same thing twice. I would get half way through looking in them all, and then they'd bring more out. You just pile your cart up with whatever you want and then you pay by the pound. You don't even have to take the stuff out of the carts. They've got this giant cart scale that they weigh your cart on, and then it minuses the weight of the cart. The more your stuff weighs, the cheaper it is. Fortunately, books aren't included in the cart because they're super heavy. Hard bound books are a dollar and soft bound books are fifty cents. Clothes are a $1.50 a pound and housewares are even less. They also have a great variety of furniture, all as cheap as the dirt they're covered in.

That is the main drawback to "The Bins" it's really really dirty, not so much with visible dirt, it's more... grimy. You can just see it in the air around the people who are tossing the clothes every which way in search for the perfect 70's tie-dye shirt. (Or whatever it is they're trying to find.) At one point I found I just couldn't stop sneezing. I couldn't figure it out at first. I'm not allergic to dust at all, but then it dawned on me... CATS! I'm deathly allergic to cats! They must have dropped off the crazy cat lady's things after she went to live in the mental institute... and that bin I just pawed through with the blanket... that must have been her cats' favorite blanket... Ewww! I saw some people looking through the bins with gloves. And I don't think that's such a bad idea... And I'm not that much of a clean freak. The place kinda makes a person want to take a shower, a bath, and wash their hands and clothes all at the same time. You can buy a plate with the food still on it. And I don't want to know why the books were wet.

Anyhow... here are the goods!

Today I found, an amazing 60's table cloth with blue roses on it. Like most everything at "The Bins" it's got an unidentifiable yellow stain on it. But I've got some Yellow Out and EVERYTHING I bought will be cleaned in some way before I'm done. I also bought a couple of vintage shirts and some retro pajamas with cowgirls on them that I think I'll re-purpose. This is the place to go for buying clothes that you want to alter into something else. I also bought an old plaid wool coat in pretty good shape that I want to convert into a skirt. It will make the most wonderful skirt. It can be my next weekend project. I also bought a couple of neat plates and some mushroomy stationary. I realized when I got home that the light blue 60's overnight case I bought looks just like my lunch box. I mean they're exactly the same. They're the same color, they're the same shape, they've both got two clasps, the only difference is that my lunchbox is smaller. I also got a jar full of fabric covered buttons some of which have trolls on them. Those really made me laugh. I think I'll make more pins to sell on Etsy. And last but not least. I've discovered where the old children's books went. And I was able to pick up a few of my favorites. I'm such a sucker for old books. The old children's books have great illustrations. And old books have such a nice smell...

Anyways, "The Bins" are fantastic and I think I'll go back someday. Probably not for another two or three months or so, I really don't need to drag anything more home. But it's a swell place to treasure hunt.