The Universe and Stuff

Blogs are a funny thing. I come here a few times a week and blabber on about my life. Usually it’s random stuff that I think no one would even be interested in and then… (YAY!)… there are actually people who come along and like the same random stuff as I do! It is so great!

I have been feeling bored and blah and out of sorts this week, then I found out (Thanks M!) that Venus is in retrograde and (Thanks S!) that we will have a second full moon this month! See! I am not just bored and blah and out of sorts for no reason. The whole Universe is working against us! We might as well just crawl right back into bed.

Littlest drew this. Isn’t it terrific?

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I have been experimenting in the kitchen this week and have had 2 successes so far (according to my menfolk). On Monday, I made meat sauce in the crockpot. Thanks Pinterest! The boys had it over pasta but Tom and I had it over spiral cut zucchini. It was SO GOOD! I have tried making zucchini “noodles” before, but sautéed and served with tomato sauce and they were always too mushy. The trick is RAW zucchini and meat sauce to give it some substance. Thumbs up!

Last night we had flank steak marinated in lemongrass and curry. It is my Mom’s recipe and it is delish. For any Vietnamese speakers, it is called bo xao xa cari. Yum.

I like this little verse..

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And this little cat…

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Happy Wednesday, Friends!

Le bored

Hello there. How are things in your world?

This weekend I felt bored… which doesn’t happen often. Not often at all. Clearly I have many, many hobbies and equally many chores to keep me busy, but this weekend I didn’t want to do any of them. It was a weird feeling indeed.

Of course, I did end up doing them because you know, being adult and all, so the house was cleaned and the laundry was washed and the groceries were bought. And well, I guess I also had to practice some piano, and watch Little House on the Prairie Season 1 DVDs, and eat Mexican food, but my heart really wasn’t in it. Le sigh. 

Of course, when all else fails, there’s always cross stitch!

Happiness is… a cat + cross stitch.

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I think we’ve solved the skin color dilemma. I tried DMC 948 which is what most of you suggested and, by George, you are the smartest readers on all the Internets!

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Thanks for the sage advice!

!!!

Hi! Help!

So I went and bought a few more skin color options. What do you think? Any contenders? I know it’s stupid to fixate on this, but it’s what I do.

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It dawned on me that Christmas is only 5 short months away. I really want to make gifts this year, which means I should be starting… now? Do you all make gifts? Do you find that people like that?

My friends and family are used to receiving store bought gifts and my biggest fear is that they’ll open handmade gifts that I slaved over and be like “Oh… neat…” I personally LOVE handmade gifts, but maybe not everyone feels the same way? Thoughts?

On that note, Happy Friday!

See the cloud shaped like an exclamation point?

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Yay weekend!

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The post in which I actually discuss cross stitching (and a bunch of other things too)

So I need your advice. I know my photos suck and the colors aren’t accurate at all… but what should I do with her skin?

To start, I like how ghostly pale she is supposed to look.

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I don’t know. It appeals to my love of the macabre.

But my fabric choice is too light, and the color doesn’t show up, so I used something a little more creamy. Eh.

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I don’t know how I feel about it. These are other colors I have laying around. Peachy? Darker? Sigh… none of them look right! Should I try straight up white? HELP!

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It is so hot here this week. So hot. My goal is to stay inside the air conditioning as much as possible. It’s good to have realistic goals.

We had a very lazy weekend. Littlest and I dropped Biggest off at a birthday party and then walked around the mall while we were waiting.

Littlest fell in love with this chair which is just about the ugliest thing ever.

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He swore that he would come back one day and buy it for his first apartment. I’m apologizing now to his future wife who will be stuck with it some day.

That night, we all went to an antique car show. Biggest, our resident car guy, loved seeing all of them, especially the DeLorean. I have to admit that it was pretty cool as far as cars go… shiny and silvery like a refrigerator!

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Sunday we spent home because… ugh… heat.

There was Lego playing…

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and snoozing…

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and science experimenting…

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and a little pickle making thrown in for good measure.

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And lots of reading!

I finished Gone Girl. It was so disturbing! And she was so insane! And no one was likable! It was a page turner for sure, but too psychologically upsetting for me. I’ll stick to my Little House on the Prairie books from now on, thank you very much.

In the Colonies

Hi Blog! TGIF! Are you all as happy as I am that it’s Friday?

This has been a busy but unproductive week. Here are some tidbits.

I started reading “Quiet” on the train to NYC. It’s a good read so far. Totally relatable.

Yesterday was a glorious day outside, so I walked to the library at lunchtime. This town has the most beautiful library perched right on the river with a little park outside.

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I am probably the only person on Earth who has not read or seen Gone Girl, so I checked out the book. Let’s see what all the fuss was about.

We have been enjoying all sorts of summer activities around here…

Nerf gun battling…

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And scootering.

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We went to a concert in the park. The boys ate all of the snacks before the concert even got started and then got bored and made up games with tin foil balls.

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We also went to our neighborhood ice cream social. The boys loved eating ice cream (maybe I did too) and running around with their little friends and digging in the creek. Ahhhh summertime.

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We finally decided on our vacation which will be to…

Williamsburg, Virginia!

The boys are excited about Busch Gardens and Water Country USA. Tom and I are excited about Colonial Williamsburg. This is right up our nerdy history-loving alley!

As we were talking about the trip, I realized that I have a Williamsburg pattern in my stash! I don’t even remember where or when I got it, but sure enough it was there!

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Maybe I should stitch Williamsburg while IN Williamsburg! Am I crazy fun, or what?!!

Another day… Another post.

Hi Blog. Happy Monday (not!).

We had a delightful weekend. Weekends are the best.

These came out of the garden.

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They might not look like much to you, but they are a pretty big deal. We are not such green thumbs around here.

I got this book, which I am looking forward to reading. Introverts unite!

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I let the boys do a little redecorating, which I am beginning to regret. This is one of their formerly cute shelves. It used to hold vintage children’s books and fire engines now THIS… sigh… boys.

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Proof that Coal might >gasp< LIKE Sammy (a little).

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Proof that Charlie is the softest, cuddliest, fattest cat in all the land.

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I made this Icebox Strawberry Cake from Pinterest. Fresh whipped cream… happy sigh. It was worth it.

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Lest you think that I’ve abandoned my one true love, I haven’t.

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See the creepy lady that is beginning to emerge? There is a little problem. My linen is lighter than the linen that they recommended, so her skin color may not show up. Should I go even paler for her skin so that she is even creepier and ghostlier?

The boys got tired of the “8 Ball Club” upstairs, so they set up the “Hip Hop Club” in the basement. Tom and I were quick to dismantle it because geeeze it was the only quiet kid free area left in the house!

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I practiced the piano, using a new online course.

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And Charlie discovered the dryer.

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How was your weekend?

Here we go again.

First things first… WE HAVE SOAP!

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Soap making is totes fun and exciting. I am dying to try a few more batches and flavor combinations!

In other news, I went out to dinner on Monday with Stephanie and came home with a…

WEAVING LOOM!

Oops. Funny how that works. Stephanie was kind enough to lend me her Cricket Loom, so of course I had to try it out tonight. See how productive I am when the boys are away at camp?

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The initial set up was a bit of a PITA,

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But once I got going, it was kinda fun.

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I learned how to set up the loom and weave by watching YouTube. What can’t you learn on YouTube? It took about 3 hours to weave a little scarf.

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By “little”, I mean dog-sized.

Behold my ever patient model, Coal.

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Looking off into the distance all nonchalant and model-like.

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This is his “I’m a serious high fashion model” pose.

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This is his “spying Tom with his after-modeling treat” pose.

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So marks my first foray into weaving.

Pros:

  • kinda fun
  • super fast
  • better than crocheting (my fingers don’t cooperate with crocheting)

Cons:

  • a pain to set up
  • takes up a lot of space
  • Charlie kept getting into the yarn, so I had to lock him in our room and he got mad and… PEED ON THE BED! OMG! HORRIBLE! HORRIBLE! HORRIBLE! (That might have been enough to end my weaving career.)

Summer fun

Hi Friends! How was your 4th of July weekend?

Ours was action packed! We had some:

Cross stitching with cat time

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Guitar playing with cat time

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Apple pie baking with kid time

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It was our first ever attempt at baking a lattice top pie. I was pretty proud of the results.

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There was also some parade watching with friends time.

When you live around Philadelphia, a parade is not complete until you see some Mummers…

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and the Philly Phanatic.

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There was a lot of hanging out with Charlie time.

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I mean, how can you resist this adorable mug?

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On Sunday, the boys left for overnight camp. What is a bored Mom to do but think up some new hobbies?

First up… Whipped Body Butter

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Coconut Oil + Shea Butter + Almond Oil + Rose= this!

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Next was soap making! That was SOOOO FUUUUUUNNNN! (Thanks to my friend, Linh, for expert advice via text!)

The recipe I used had Olive, Almond, and Coconut Oil in it. It also had a bit of Castor Oil and Shea Butter, but somehow they didn’t make it into the photo.

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I felt like a straight up Scientist, what with my safety goggles and digital scale. Tom helped me with the Lye because that stuff FRR— EEEKS me out!

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Linh recommended the hot process crockpot method which is perfect for an impatient person like me.

Check it out… I’m making SOAP!!!

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Mixing in some honey and oatmeal. Wheeeeee!

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Here’s what it looked like this morning after curing overnight. I am dying to slice it up!

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Are there any other soap makers out there? What are your favorite recipes? Any tips for a newbie? I have a feeling that everyone will be getting soap for Christmas this year.

Stuff

Hello Monday.

I’m running out of things to blog about since I:

1. barely cross stitch these days,

2. am cranky,

3. talk incessantly about my cat.

Stephanie and I did finally make it to dinner and it was FUN!

Drinks on the water = YAY!

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This weekend it RAINED so I stayed inside and worked on hemming curtains for our bedroom. Yes, it only took me 3 years to hang curtains. I like them, but the hems are crooked. How hard is it to sew even lines? (angry face emoticon)

Man hanging things = SEXY!

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The boys turned their room into a private billiards club complete with comfy lounge chairs.

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The eye masks were a nice touch. That’s one classy lounge.

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Luckily they said that we could be members of their club. We spent an evening hanging out and it was indeed quite relaxing and comfortable. They look like first class passengers on a transatlantic flight.

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But the excitement doesn’t stop there. Charlie discovered his shadow! Hilarity ensued.

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The End.

(not so) Deep thoughts

The other night we had the most powerful storm. It caused quite a bit of damage in neighboring areas, but we did ok. After the storm ended, the sky was lit up all fantastic and yellow. It was weird to see a bright yellow sky at 9:00 at night.

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I haven’t been quite as productive this week. In fact, I am feeling downright lazy. It’s nutty how I know something will make me feel better (get up and be productive), but I can’t make myself do it.

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The boys started camp this week. They surprised us by not wanting to go but now that they’re there, they are enjoying it. They are so tan and tired by the end of the day. I approve!

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I have plans with my friend for dinner tonight. She is the type of friend who lifts my spirits and is a joy to be around. The problem is that we are both introverts and have a tendency to cancel our plans at the last minute because the temptation of staying home is so great. So, Stephy, if you are reading this, and you get one of those “Sigh… I’m so tired…” texts from me this afternoon, tell me to snap out of it!

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Happy Thursday, Friends.