Sunday, August 17, 2014

A very productive weekend

Yes it was. Very productive. Brace yourselves...
I think it was the result of a particularly bad allergy week and that I did nothing during the week. Now you must understand something - I. Do. Not. Have. Allergies. No I don't. But about four years ago all of the sudden April and May became very sneezy. Now it seems that I am to be treated to another bout for the month of August. This time the allergy package has a bonus! Itchy eyes. At first I thought I was just having an eye irritation after all of the crying on Monday for the devastating news about Robin Williams. But the irritation did not go away and was compounded with more sneezy for the rest of the week. I must have used about 8 hankies a day because that was all that was in the light colored wash. Practically took up the whole laundry line. Anyway - come weekend time, I had purchased more Zyrtek and the generic Benadrill and it was manageable. Today I seem to be much much better. I sure hope it was a one week thing.

But on to the productivity!
Last weekend! I finally finished the green flowered blouse! Yay! As I said - it was one of those too-many-years-in-the-making projects. Don't let my Omi see the tailoring which is, ahem, well, for her would be unacceptable. You can see the stitchs! gasp! But no one else (I hope) is going to notice.   
I'm happy with it. It fits, it doesn't pucker anywhere weird, and it stayed together when I wore it. What more could anyone ask for? 

Friday: this other blouse was a bit less of a long and drawn out project, but still a relief to be finished. This is the same pattern as the pink and blue blouses from this post
It's my first stretchy fabric success! I think I only had to re-thread my surger once? That's pretty darn good! But I sure did fiddle and fiddle and fiddle on Friday. My Omi would have been much more proud of me for this blouse. Now it fits really well. Think I'll wear it tomorrow. 

In a crazy fit of productivity on Saturday (anything to not think about the allergies) I tackled some more of those projects I've been meaning to do for a while now.  A few years ago, I read an article in some outdoorsy magazine about using recycled umbrella tops for shopping bags. And I thought - what a great idea.  
Between Pedro and me, over the last year we collected quite a few. As a native Californian, one of the natural phenomena in Philadelphia that still surprises me, is the discarded umbrella. Once broken, the umbrella is simply tossed aside. It is not unusual to find their spidery mechanisms sticking up out of a garbage can. More often you find them blowing across the street or somewhere equally inconvenient because the former owner has simply tossed them aside in frustration. I was actually carrying a pair of scissors around for a while so I could cut the top off immediately instead of hauling the whole thing home. I stopped collecting after a while because I really wasn't doing anything with them. 
The bags are pretty easy to make. The article claimed they would also be waterproof because of the umbrella material. I don't think this is true. I made the dark green one back in the winter and have used it to pick up my farm share every week. One week I got caught in a down pour and didn't worry too much because the bag was supposed to be waterproof. Hmmm. The bag was soaking wet and so were the contents. Thank goodness they were just vegetables. 
Not all of the bags have been taken for a test drive yet so maybe some of the other fabrics work better.  This one is from the cutest umbrella I bought in Korea. Unfortunately the wire frame broke as soon as I got it home. But the fabric was so cute I just couldn't throw it out. The bags all have at least one bottle holder, this one has two. The best part about these bags is that you can leave the "closure" on the bag and use that to roll the bag up to practically nothing!

Fits right in my purse!  

I also had two XL umbrella covers.  The stripy one and the beige plaid one. I spent most of the day trying to figure out how to make a yoga bag with matching tote.
 I think I did OK once I worked the math out for the circular end pieces. My allergy brain did not compute the simple C=πd equation. (20in= 3.14d, solving for d the first time I got 9.55.... Good Grief! That's not even possible. Finally the second time I got something closer to 6.5. Much better.)
The yoga mat bag is slightly loose because I like to just roll everything up together - wet towels, mat and everything - all at once. I take it out as soon as I get home and wash and dry everything. The tote bag is a bit smaller than the other totes, but still one water bottle slot and plenty of room for clothing change, or ??? I had every intention of making another one out of the beige plaid material but I just ran out of steam. Maybe I will soon. I'm not really interested in keeping these, maybe I should sell them on etsy? What do you think?
And I don't know why, maybe I was feeling a little guilty that I'd run out of steam - 

 So I made some yoga head bands out of defunct leggings and iron-on butterflies.
  This afternoon I decided to spend my time in my garden.  It is blooming beautifully and I just needed  some time to enjoy it. As an added bonus, I manage to get a really good rough draft of my syllabus finished as well.
This week I'm, hopefully, taking a Mozzarella making class at Reading Terminal! I say hopefully because I'm nervous that not enough people have signed up and it won't run. I'm really excited and shall report back on my success or disaster - however it turns out.

But garden garden garden!
Another chance to play find the mantis:
 Her close-up:
 Teddy bear sunflowers:

 Regular gorgeous sunflowers which need to be protected from the squirrels:

And lastly,
Oh Captain my Captain.... 

I'm so sorry you had to leave us. We will miss you very much. 


Melanie said...

When and what time is the mozzarella workshop? One of my friends found a link online and thinks we can make it at home...but it would be super fun to do it with you!!! I don't know if I can get down there, but depending...let me know!

tara said...

Ah Melanie - Mozzarella class is tomorrow (Aug 20th) 6:30- 8:30. Plenty of time for you to make it down here! A five hour train ride would give you oodles of time to write curriculum... just sayin' - :)