Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Seriously annoyed...

At an inanimate object. My sewing machine. I think it's dead/dying. I could probably send it in for repairs, but I'm pretty sure the cost of repair would at least equal the thing's value. If I were a car insurance company, I would total it based on that figure. Sewing is an absolute chore, which sucks because besides testing out how I like quilting (which so far is about a 7 of 10 - don't love the prep of cutting, but loving my finished quilt top), I have at least one Halloween costume to make. The boy has chosen Optimus Prime, which we're going to fashion out of stuff we have. Miss G wants to be Supergirl, which we don't have and I haven't seen in stores (haven't looked online yet, though). Miss S wants to be Snow White. No, Cinderella. No, Snow White. Lucky for her, we have gorgeous dress-up dresses for each, so she doesn't have to decide until Halloween.

But I'm going to sew the Supergirl costume (Baby is undecided - by me, that is - so I might stick her in something the other girls wore, or make her something. Not sure yet). And if my machine is as annoying as it was yesterday, I'm going to scream.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

My experiments...

I conducted two experiments (although I'm sure they wouldn't hold up to scrutiny, being minus a control group on at least the second) today.

The first one involved laundry. I have a sensitive-skinned bunch, so I normally use scent-free, dye-free detergent. But something in the water or the washer at our new (to us, really quite, quite old) house leaves the clothes smelling funky no matter how quickly I get them from washer to dryer. I've tried scented detergents for Tom's clothes. It helped a little. Today I tried vinegar in my rinse cycle. Nothing came out of the dryer smelling like pickles, so it's already better than I feared. As to how fresh-smelling, they were okay. I think the concern is long-term. If we don't wear something right away, it smells. I have to assume it's the water here (we're on a well, don't know if that would matter - I'm a city girl living in the country - this is all new to me).

Final results on the laundry experiment (which did have a control group - one wash in free and clear with vinegar, one in scented with vinegar, one in free and clear sans vinegar and one scented sans vinegar) will be determined sometime next week.

My other experiment was chocolate. Yes, I've had chocolate before. I'm practically an expert on chocolate. But I've been trying to lose weight and working my butt and I've been so good about not snacking or having too many sweets (after about a two-week weaning period). Today I tried a handful of M&M's and...freak, they're what's missing in my life. I could have finished the LARGE sized bag. But I showed restraint and put them away.

So the results of that experiment show I can actually eat a little bit of chocolate. My hypothesis (that I would eat the whole bag but was extremely on edge and didn't give a crap) was wrong.

Friday, September 18, 2009


everything's kind of crazy at Casa Christy right now. We've finally sold our old, which is good. But we settle in 6 days and I still have the inspection repairs to get finalized. It should all be done by this time Monday, but for now, I'm going crazy with worry and keeping which repairman is coming when.

DH and I are the leaders of the Bear Scouts for our oldest this year. I've got the year pretty well set up, but getting everything together every Tuesday is making my brain crazy.

I'm also the co-leader of my oldest girls' Daisy troop. But I'm not really in charge there and it's making me a little crazy. I'd like to get the year set up the way I have the Bear year set up (weekly lesson plans, complete with what materials I need and minor homework assignments - sort of reconsidering my longtime statement that I never want to be a teacher).

My house is a bigger wreck than usual - I've been sick since we got back from our busy, busy weekend last week. I've gotten next to nothing done. I need to get up and fold the laundry, but, well, tomorrow's football day, so that's my plan for watching a few games and chilling out on the sofa.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Like I need a hole in the head...

That's how I need another hobby. Seriously. But I'm thinking of taking up quilting. Last time I considered a new hobby it was jewelry-making/beading. It lasted for a month. It just wasn't me. I still have all the stuff for it. I already like to sew, so this could be something I like. But making a dozen rag quilts last Christmas didn't go so well. I still, all but one. Three are finished, but they go to siblings and I felt weird giving two of the siblings their quilts, but not the third (whose quilt remains unfinished to this day).

I love to read hobby blogs and so many of the quilting blogs I read are just gorgeous. I get obsessed with stuff like this. I read and read and shop and shop (window-shop, that is). I think I'm obsessed with the couch to 5k stuff too. I'm still doing it, which is good. But I'm getting frustrated that I haven't lost weight yet. I don't know. I guess I just need to be patient. I definitely feel stronger and healthier, which is probably more important right now.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Desperately seeking routine...

Well, actually, I'm not that good with routine. I prefer to have a frameworkroutine with mix and match parts. I need to get into some sort of routine now that school's started, especially once Miss S goes to preschool next week.

I"m really overwhelmed by the clutter in my house right now. I just have stuff. And no place to put it. And at least half of the stuff is not mine. Which means it's either kid stuff (which I do take responsibility for, at least somewhat) or Tom's stuff (which I try not to touch so I don't have to answer the "where did you put..." questions). I just don't know where to begin.

It's come to my attention lately that I'm a perfectionist. And I hate the idea of failure. So if I think something's not going to be perfect, I generally don't try or at least only half-heartedly.

My goals for September - declutter, establish a cleaning routine, one digital page/day, complete one knitting project, get organized for Christmas (list-making). I'm sure more will follow. Something that I shouldn't do, but probably will sometime this fall is try my hand at quilting. I don't know if I have the patience/perfectionism for it, but as I get older all that stuff is easier.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Mini-review: Secret History of the Pink Carnation

Let me just sum up my feelings about this book with this: I stopped reading halfway through - not to skip to the end like I do with most books, but to order the next one in the series. I liked it that much.

To begin with, my impressions of the book from the blurb and cover were completely mistaken. I thought "stuffy book about stuffy people. Blech." I want to like books that are "quality" fiction, but usually I don't. Well, that's not true. If they're well written, I don't really care what they're about. I just don't generally like really sad books (like the one I was tricking into reading last night - more on that later), which seems to me that the book club types usually are.

So I thought it was a take-off on a book that I'd never read and never wanted to read and thus, I wouldn't like it. Like all the Jane Austen take-offs. Some seem fun and interesting, but I can't bring myself to read Austen (mainly because the books have the tiniest print and I just can't read it - maybe I should make that eye doctor appointment).

And it was, in fact, sort of based on the Scarlet Pimpernel, which gets points for using one of my very favorite words inthe world. Scarlet. My middle daughter (as in middle of my three daughters, but third in line) was almost middle-named Scarlet because I love that word so much. Another of my very favorite words is vermillion - probably not a coincidence that they both describe my favorite color.

Misconception #1 - Despite being initially based on a book that I hadn't read and will never read, I wasn't lost in any way. The Scarlet Pimpernel was a very distant reference. This book was very much self-contained (well, as much as the first in a series can be - I just mean it didn't depend on my knowledge of something before it).

Misconception #2 - This was not some stuffy book. This was a romance novel. Shuffled in the pages of a chick lit novel.

I read it in a day. From cover to cover. Which is unsual for me because usually I get too impatient/bored to not skip to the end. Some books the ending tells me to go back and read the rest, some I just put down right then. Can't wait for The Masque of the Black Tulip.

In short (I mean in long and rambling), highly recommended if you like chick lit and historical romance.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Couch to 5K - Day 3, Week One

First off, I am in no way a runner. I have no intentions of running a 5K (though I reserve the right to change my mind about that as I get further into the program). I don't like to sweat, I don't like to exercise.

But I need to lose weight. I weigh the same as I did the day I went into the hospital to deliver my fourth child. She's almost 15 months old. My experience with my other three was that I didn't lose weight while nursing - in fact I couldn't lose weight until I stopped. Well, Miss V still nurses on occasion (maybe once every other night), but I'm hoping it works anyway.

I decided on the couch to 5K as my exercise routine because I wanted something intense but that didn't take forever to do. A - I get bored very easily and can't finish an hour long workout - not because I can't physically, I just can't stand that long doing one thing that usually isn't that interesting to start with. B - the less intense exercise I've been doing (albeit sporadically) hasn't done crap for me.

So I just started. Then I found some podcasts (though the Ullrey podcast is the best of the ones I've tried). And I've done it for three days now. My next goal is to work on my eating habits. I have a tendency to snack a lot, especially at night. I'm hoping that if I see some results this week, that I'll be inspired not to snack endlessly.

I'll try to update on my progress weekly. I'm not sure if I'm going to start week 2 on Thursday or if I'm going to do week 1 one more time. My first time I only made it halfway through (got bored and tried to run too fast too soon).