Monday, October 29, 2007

Going & Blowing

"Going and blowing" was just a nice way of saying that I've been running around like a chicken with its head cut off the past few weeks working on my various projects. I'm very proud to note that I actually finished one! I know... I know... people who know me are in complete shock!

A friend had given us his daughter's old furniture which she'd outgrown. It includes a headboard, small bookcase and a bookcase with toy box attached. I started in on the headboard. I wanted to refinish it to more closely match my old dresser that I have in the kids' room. The first pix of of the headboard is after my first coat of stain on the main body, or rather what was SUPPOSEDLY a staining shortcut...NOT. We bought the stain and poly together. This is not a good thing for me cause, as you can see in the first photo, I had a WEE bit of an issue with the running. Of course, working on it at night didn't help my ability to see the runs in the first place. Had to sand them out and give it another the daylight this time. You can see, in the first pix the original color of the pieces there on the roof as it I didn't work on it until last.

The finished headboard... Okay, so I've completed 2 projects. The quilt on my daughter's bed is one that my great-grandmother made for me when I was young. I had to make some repairs to the backing and give it a MAJOR washing as it suffered some damage and was embedded with a TON dirt after being in the tornado that hit our home years ago. My last visit to the folk's home had me helping to clean out the storage building where I found this quilt (and one for my brother) in a bag up in the rafters still waiting for repair. It cleaned up exceptionally well and is now being put to use again and that makes me very, very happy.

As for other projects in, that list is never-ending but I've got some that are further along today than they were a week ago.

We have a group of gals that get together once a month to work on a project in one another's yard. We call ourselves "Garden Hoes". Our first project was to create a flowerbed around Rose's mailbox. To make things even MORE interesting, I was nominated to paint Rose's mailbox to make for a complete makeover. Well, that was weekend before last and I'm STILL not done with the mailbox. I'm close...just have to do the flowers on the second side. I've made the numbers thicker so they are easier to see. Have learned that I can NOT paint flowers. HA HA... Anyway, here is the mailbox (one side anyway).

Got a little more work done on my little bit of "Eden". Pictures will probably come along before too long to show the progress there. I want to get a bit more in the ground first.

Frogged a sweater so I could recycle the wool for a sweater I'm wanting to knit for my son. Got the yarn measured and balled up so that was a nice task to complete. NOW I just have to redesign this one sweater to fit my needs/wants and get knitting on though I don't have enough I'm knitting already.

Lastly, at least I think, we dug up one of the flowerbeds next to the house, lined it with bricks and moved the outdoor bar over and just made it a much nicer looking area. ALSO, by the bricks being there, my dogs will no longer be digging up that area. Slowly but surely, we are getting the house looking a little nicer...on the outside at least. Also started filling nail holes and prepping house for painting, which I'm hoping to get done within the month.

Whew! It was a fun and busy weekend. At least I finally have some FOs (finished objects)!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Baby It's Cold Outside

Okay, so there are many places much cooler today than Austin, but considering just yesterday I was wearing flipflops, shorts and a tee and sweating, 55 degrees today is burrrrrrr-nilly. I'm more looking toward the remainder of the week's 70-something weather.

Friday, October 19, 2007

My Little Eden

Wow, I'm back and it hasn't been a month or more. I just couldn't wait to share some pix of recent projects (outside, anyway). These first two pix are of my little "Eden" I'd referenced in the previous post. Unfortunately, the pix here show a couple of the panels down as we had to remove them to back the Jeep in to tow out the tectonic plate which you can see in the middle of the bed. Ended up having to break it into four pieces before we could get them pulled. I kept waiting for someone from the other side of the world to pop up out of the hole we created and say, "HELLO!". It was a huge rock. Anyway, the panels are back up and I'm now working on laying down cloth, spreading mulch and getting my plants in the ground. I'm so very happy with my little plot of garden space. No dogs to dig up and eat my plants. No little fingers to pluck the first blooms off anything that flowers.... Of course, it has much to go before it is as beautiful as it is in my head, but it will get there.

Okay, so in one of the previous photos you can catch a glimpse of the candy cane house. Here is our sample swatches of the colors we are looking at painting the house instead. I can barely wait to get the thing painted. Oh, in case you were wondering, the "winning" main color is one that is right between the two you see in the pix. We also redid the lower flowerbed. Dug up all the plants, leveled and lay down landscape cloth and coverd with pea gravel. I TOTALLY love the end result. Of course, keeping little ones from moving all that gravel will be a challenge but...

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

From Candy Cane to "Normal"

So when we bought our "handy-man" house a year ago I noted that one of the first things (okay I admit, my list of 1st things to do was QUITE long....STILL IS) I wanted was to paint the house to a "normal" color scheme. The thing looks like a candy cane. White house with bright red trim. If I lived at the North Pole, I could see me being the envy of all my neighbors BUT here in Central Texas it stands out horribly and I have hated the color combo since day one.

That said, we FINALLY chose our new paint colors for the house. Selecting the trim was much easier than choosing the main color. We ended up slapping a quart of a couple different shades on the house and living with it for a week before deciding, just today, that we are doing the third color option (which is between the two "extremes" we'd tested. I'm sooo excited, I want to go home and begin prepping the house for painting immediately. Unfortunately, we've got a busy week and busier weekend ahead of us so I must continue to be patient.

Since I can't jump right on painting tonight (hubby has to go get the paint first), I'm going to work more on my BEAUTIFUL garden that my dad helped my DH build for me. Well, they built a nice big fence around what WILL be my little plot of garden. Between the kiddos and the dogs....let's just say my home was not a place plants looked forward to residing. There have been more casulties than successes to date but now I've got an area just for my plants that I'm working on putting together.

Still knitting....just plugging along and hoping SOME day I'll have a FO to share. In the meantime, my KH Secret Theme Swap partner over in the UK FINALLY was able to rescue her package from the hostage situation it has been in as a result of the postal workers going on strike there. URG. The theme of her package I put together was "Dragons" and included one pattern of my own design. Yipppeeee! Of course, I'm knitting that thing as much as I can to make sure I don't run across any glaring screwups in my writing of the pattern.

Here's a pix of the stitchmarkers I'd made for Stacey Jean. The backdrop is a skinny scarf I knit up for her and along side the stitchmarkers is a pewter baby dragon (unfortunately who is laying down in the pix). I think (I hope) she liked it as much as I enjoyed putting the package together for her. I'll admit I almost gave up a few times and/or opted for a different theme but am pleased with the overall package and the pattern I designed for her.

As if that swap weren't exciting enough, I'm hosting a Winter Wonderland Swap on KH as well. We have about 55 of us signed up thus far and it is looking to be another fun and, hopefully, successful swap. Yarn, pattern, stitchmarkers and something hot to drink... Sounds like a winner to me!

Gotta run... projects projects projects!!!