August 31, 2011

Things I Forgot to Post About: A Summer Wrap-Up Series

It may seem like I live a very boring life by the way this blog is so lacking in adventures. But as it turns out, I just run a very boring blog. See, I'm really bad at posting about something within a reasonable timeframe. I actually have pictures from the Christmas parade last year which I still have not posted.

So, as a way to bid adieu to summer, I'll do a series of posts: Things I Forgot to Post About. Or rather, Things About Which I Forgot to Post.

This will be Part One.

Golfing

On Father's Day, Kayden and I took Keene to play his first round of golf. We played a scramble so as not to slow down the teams behind us, but we still managed to pick up a mildly annoying fourth player, who turned out to be a golf instructor. Why? Why do they always turn out to be golf instructors?



And, of course, we let the kid drive:





Exploring

One random Sunday, we decided to explore a state park near our apartment. We walked along a river for a while, then found a bridge made from a large tree. We veered off of the trail, crossed the bridge, and started walking back the way we had come, this time on the other side of the river.

Unfortunately, it seems that veering off of a trail was what you should not do in that state park. In our effort to get back home, we came across some deserted campsites, nearly stepped on a bull snake, had to crawl through thick reeds. Yet we still had to cross the river to get back home. This time without the large tree to serve as a bridge. After doubling back for a minute or two, we found the next best thing: two smallish trees to serve as a bridge.


This worked fairly well until it was Maia's turn to cross. Two seconds after this picture was taken, I knew I was about to fall. So I grabbed Maia and threw her from that spot to the ground. She did not like being tossed over part of a river, but with only one wet shoe, I consider that a successful crossing.

Purging the Junk

I've been reading a lot of blogs about minimalism lately. Because I'm impressionable, I decided to drastically reduce the amount of junk in the apartment. And hey, bonus! Less to move!

There was the Rock and Roll Garage Sale at 3 Kings:


And again:


Keene got his first massage, performed by the sexy Luise:


Kort and I braved the heat at the flea market:


As well as the insane roadways, as we maneuvered into our allotted space:


We even did an actual garage sale, though I didn't get photos of that.

Even better than getting rid of all that junk: we barely brought any more junk back into the house. However, we did get a bike for Kayden:


And yet another bike for Keene. We went to the thrift store where we found my vintage Hawthorne cruiser. And guess what we found! No, really, guess!

Another vintage freakin' Hawthorne, this time a road bike:


We have amazing thrift-store luck.

And thus concludes Part One of all the stuff I have not been posting about this summer. Stay tuned for museums, camping trips, and ZOMG! Quicksand!

August 26, 2011

Friday Jumble of Mish-Mashed Stuff

You know how most people say summer is craft fair season? No, you didn't know that? Oh well, they do. However, for me (and most other knitters and crocheters), craft fair season starts in the fall. The weather cools enough so that wearing yarn doesn't seem insane. To prepare for this, I bought--wait for it--a smartphone. I'm finally ready to embrace 2007. Well, not quite. But I wanted the ability to accept credit cards at craft fairs and smartphones are the way to do it. I have to say, this new world is very daunting. "My phone can actually get a virus?!" "Why won't my phone stay charged?!" "You can watch Netflix on your phone?!"

In any event, I'm enjoying some parts of it (namely, the games and the swiping-text feature)...and hating other parts (see above).

So, what other huge life-changes have been going on? Oh, we're buying a house. On Tuesday. Then moving on Friday. And we're totally not ready.


I don't know if you know this, but liquor stores are the best places to get boxes. The boxes are sturdy and a good size. And the store employees are almost always grateful to get rid of the boxes.

Many times, the employees are so nice and helpful that we feel obligated to buy something from them. As a result, our beer-drinking (and tequila-drinking) has increased like three- or four-fold since we started packing.

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Last week was the Cub Scout Raingutter Regatta. This is the boat race which Kayden has done for five years now. He's won some races and lost some races over the years. He even got third place last year.

But this year? First place.


(Note all of the frowny faces around him.)


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In uber-exciting craft news, I listed this piece of nursery decor on Etsy, a first for me.


Right now, it's for sale as just the frame and felt design. However, in the future, I hope to incorporate one of those weird little, animal dolls I sewed a while back, creating a kind of neato 3-D wall hanging.

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Want some music to listen to? In honor of Women's Equality Day, here's Salt 'N Pepa. Tough chicks who objectified men and who paved the way for more female rappers in the mainstream. Love it.



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Finally, here are some random life-pictures:




August 24, 2011

How to Make a Hat-Stand for Less Than Ten Bucks

I hear tutorials are popular on blogs. But I also hear that I don't really know how to make a tutorial. So instead, I will give this a tutorial title, but just show you this cool thing I made. My readers are smart: I'm certain they can figure the specific steps for themselves without proper instructions.

As a hat-maker, I've always struggled to find a good way to display hats for craft fairs. I started out by laying the hats flat on the table. That's a great way for people to not even see what you are selling.

Then I added some of those creepy, white Styrofoam heads into the mix:


Another time, my friend and I tried a stand-up lattice idea. It was a way to show off the hats vertically, but it seemed awfully busy:


Last year, I got the idea of going the shabby-chic route and displaying them on vintage candleholders:


Again, not a bad idea, but the table seemed just a little too shabby, with not enough chic.

A couple weeks, I began thinking again of ways to display those damn hats. I wanted something simple, something bright. Like me, you might say.

I went to Michaels for the materials, though Keene suggested Home Depot would probably be cheaper. Here's what I got:


Wooden "plaques" in various shapes - $2.00-$3.00 each
Acrylic paint in various colors - $.59 each
Wooden dowels - $.99 each
Wooden discs in large and small - $2.00-$3.00 each
Wood glue (already had, but is probably around $2.50)

First things first, I drilled a hole partway through the bottom of the discs, so it didn't actually penetrate the other side. I did this while holding the power drill in one hand and the disc in the other hand. This part scared Keene. But you know, some people just don't take enough risks when it comes to power drills and hands.


When all of the half-holes were drilled, I used what Keene insists is not a hacksaw to cut the dowels into varying heights between 9" to 24" tall. Then I wood-glued the drilled holes, and hammered the dowels in with a rubber mallet:


I also used a level to make sure the discs were level, because that would have been an embarrasing tutorial if they weren't.


Then it was time to paint:


By the by, if you're going to also buy paintbrushes from Michaels, don't go for the cheap ones unless you want little hairs stuck in your paint. I ended up using a clean kitchen sponge after realizing this.

After several coats of paint, the hat-stands were finished! Hooray!


August 22, 2011

One Last Summer Hurrah

If I could improve my business practices in one way, it would be to work on seasonal products in anticipation of the correct season. All winter, I should have been preparing spring products. All spring, I should have been preparing summer products.

Instead, fall is nearing quickly and what am I working on? Summery freakin' headbands.

In any event, though, they're fun and quick to make which fits in with my hectic, non-crafty life right now.





Here's how they look on a head:


I also had some fun working on these ones, though they took quite a bit longer:


I'm really feeling comic books lately. Maybe it's because I finally got rid of the huge box of comics I had been dragging around for three years. I'll be working on more of these captions soon.

Anyhow, they're now for sale on Etsy. Go check them out. Celebrate summer into the fall.

Friday Friday Friday - Fun Fun Fun

Notes from today: this post was intended for last Friday, but Blogger is/was/will always be stupid. So here it is, instead, to kick off your week.

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So, my website was hacked yesterday. Sixty dollars and several hours later, it was fixed. However, the beautiful font that was used in all of the headings and titles is gone. Several more hours and multiple re-uploads and backups later...and, well, it's still gone. If anyone knows about Wordpress themes (and ElegantThemes, in particular) and could possibly help me figure out this pesky problem, I'd love you forever. Seriously. I'll even name a pet after you.

Update: I fixed the fonts issue! Hooray! And now I don't have to promise my love and pet's name to a possible stranger!

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Here is something deep to consider. Last week, I burnt my arm on the rim of a pot while cooking. It created a thin little rainbow burn.

Now, having just been burnt and still feeling the lingering ouchiness, I saw the burn like this:


Keene, on the other hand, feeling no pain, saw it like this:



A matter of perspective, really.

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So, because I'm mostly busy editing a video and repairing my pretty font, I'm going to leave you with some interesting articles I've read lately, all from the website Bored Panda:

Top 33 World's Strangest Buildings

Make Something Cool Every Day

Cinemagraphs

Cool Inventions from the Past

And lastly, here is my newest favorite song: