Creature Comforts – Day 26, Survival Mode


Glorious Granny Squares!

Granny squares ready to be added to the blanket.

Ladies and gentlemen, I have officialy entered “survival mode.”

I know I’ve already mentioned that this is the time of the year that is hardest on me. I have 3 volunteer jobs in Girl Scouts – troop leader, troop cookie coordinator, and school representative. This is the time of year when all 3 of those jobs collide. This weekend we’ll be celebrating Scout Sunday at the church associated with our sponsoring school. As school representative for Girl Scouts, I’m one of the volunteers responsible for coordinating this event and the reception afterwards (as well as being one of the volunteers who helps set up the training sessions for girls who want to earn their religioius badges and emblems). I’ve already had 2 meetings this week for Girl Scout volunteers, for a total of 5 hours spent in meetings in the last two nights. Initial orders for Girl Scout cookies have to be submitted this week, so I’m working on that. Cookie booth site selection was this evening, so I’ve now got 6 cookie booths coming up between end of February and mid-March. And the school is having an open house the same day we’re doing Scout Sunday, so I have to man a table for Girl Scouts at that event, then get the school cafeteria ready for the Scout Sunday reception, then sit through Mass (yes, it’s “Drag Your Buddhist to Church” day again!), then help run the reception all on the same day.

And so naturally, today I broke out in hives and had a flare up of joint pain.

This is the time I hunker down and look at all the things I have to do, and I start to pick and choose my battles. I felt great yesterday, and I did ALL THE THINGS that I had on my to-do list. I felt lousy today and did only those things I absolutely had to do, to-do list be damned. The only crafting I got done today was to weave in the ends on some granny squares for the blanket. And that was it. There was no time or energy for anything else.

I hate days like this. But they are a fact of my life, especially at this time of year. Fortunately, I decided to be conservative in my booth selections, so we’re only doing one booth on any given day. But I still have two weekends in a row where we’re going to have Friday, Saturday, and Sunday all tied up with Girl Scout stuff. Somehow, I will survive.

Creature Comforts – Day 24, A Woman and her Couch


Pillows and Blanket!

I am creating the coziest place on Earth!

This is my couch. I have had this couch since grad school, which was almost 25 years ago. We replaced the couch cushions on it last summer, but little else has changed until now. The pillows I had originally made for the couch all fell apart. The various afghans my mother made for me have all been stolen by my children. But the couch abides. It is my couch, and I love it.

Three years ago, I tore my right ACL and meniscus cartilidge, and as a result, I spent almost 6 months straight on my couch, first recovering from the injury, then the surgery, and then the physical therapy. I realized then that I never wanted to be parted from my couch, and that my couch deserved the best of everything I could ever give it. I’m just sorry it’s taken me so long to make my couch such nice pillows and a blanket. The blanket should be done by the end of the week. The Jake pillow was just finished today. Next month, I may add another pillow, a cat bolster, perhaps. I spend a lot of time on my couch, and so it deserves every luxury I can give it.

Yes, I love my couch. Of course, I also love my bed, and it’s late, so I think I’m going to go there now. Good night, couch!

Creature Comforts – Day 22 & 23, Snow Days!

So, how’s the weather been in your area?

Around here we’ve had snow alternating with rain and sleet and more snow. In other words, it’s been yucky. Yesterday, the girls’ school let out early, so I decided we’d do some crafting. There’s nothing more comforting that hot chocolate, cookies, crafting and games on a snow day. I’d recently seen some videos on resin casting with embedded objects and I already had a lot of the supplies on hand, so I decided we could try that! After a lot of set up and preparation and a game of “Adventure Time Munchkin,” the girls and I were able to make these…


Resin casting!

These are NOT muffins! Do not eat them!

The shiny sparkly blue casting is Pixie’s. The pretty red sprinkly one is Princess’. And the thing that looks like sparkly raw eggs is mine.

Before I show you how mine turned out (the girls absconded with theirs before I could get pics), let me explain what Iwas trying to do. I wanted to place some small buttons of breakfast foods in the front of the casting and layer a kitten sticker behind that. Then I wanted to add a layer of pretty yellow glitter, followed by a layer of clear yellow resin. The idea was to make a sort of sunny kitten breakfast scene. However, I didn’t leave anough time between my layers, and this is what I got instead.


Breakfast Kitten!

“Breakfast Kitten Trapped in Runny Eggs”

I like it, but it does look like I embalmed that poor kitten in egg yolks for all eternity.

Aside from the layers getting all mixed up, I think it looks pretty good. I’m wondering if polishing would help clear it up, but I’m not sure I want to try that. I’m afraid I’ll mess it up. I think instead, I’ll do a few trial pieces and learn how to polish on those. For now, runny-eggs-breakfast-kitten looks good to me.

Good night!

Creature Comforts – Day 21, Appliques Are DONE, Dude!


Jake Pillow Appliques!

Yay! Appliques are done! Now what?

Well, they aren’t perfect, but the appliques are done. Once again, I had issues with the satin stitching. Sometimes I couldn’t get the needle to go through, sometimes the bobbin thread would snarl up. A couple times the thread going through the needle just frayed and split during stitching. Honestly, I don’t know if the problem is my needle (I put a brand new heavy-duty needle in before starting this!), or if the problem is the thread (one brand seems to fray more than the other), or if the problem is just my ancient sewing machine.

Actually, I can test that last theory. Princess wants a cat bolster like the one I made for myself at the beginning of the month, and Pixie has a brand new Singer sewing maching. It’s a basic model, nothing fancy, but it’s brand new and it has a drop-in bobbin, unlike my machine. I may try doing this on her machine the next time around.

And that time will probably come next month. Thinking ahead, I want February’s theme to be “Cats.” We have 3 cats in our household, and I have been thinking about making stuff for them. Then there’s the cat bolster that Princess wants, and Pixie probably wants one too. And I have some paintings of cats in progress, so I have plenty of things to work on this coming month.

Fair warning though. Next month Girl Scout cookie orders come. In, so I will be spending lots of time delivering cookies, as well as working at cookie booths. February is the most brutal month of the year for me. Add to it the fact that it’s also the month of Princess’ birthday and things get very crazy very quickly. I’m already having problems posting every night. Next month may get even worse, but I promise, I will do my best, because you know what? These creative challenges matter to me! I don’t know if anybody else really cares, but I do, so there.

Good night!

Creature Comforts – Day 19 & 20, Satin Stitch Takes FOREVER!


Jake Pillow!

These eyes take forEVAR to stitch!

I finally managed to sneak in some sewing time today. I know it doesn’t look like I got very far, but I’ve gotten one eye completely appliqued and the other is half-way done. Doing the satin-stitching on these appliques takes a lot of time. I am getting better at it, but this is not a quick thing to do. I finally got a larger needle (a 110/18) and switched to what seems to be a sturdier brand of thread. I also spent some time this afternoon doing some maintenance on my old Singer sewing machine. That sewing machine was given to me when I was about twelve years old, I think. It used to be set into a table that could be folded up to a small side table when the sewing machine wasn’t being used, but the table fell apart a couple years ago and now I just keep the sewing maching on a folding table I bought from Wally World.

I plan to finish the appliques tomorrow. I don’t know if I’ll get any further than that until this weekend. It’s shaping up to be a very busy week, and next week will be just as bad, so I’m working on projects a little bit at a time now.

Creature Comforts – Day 18, More Granny Squares!

Ugh. I know what you’re thinking. “Isn’t she done with this stupid blanket yet?!” Uh, no. And I apologize for yet another post about the granny square blanket of DOOOOOOM. But I am almost halfway done with this monstrosity. Take a look! 

Granny squares!

Three rows assembled and another in the works!


I did not get to work on the Jake pillow today because the Hubster decided to fumigate the house all day. Everything had to be moved and cleaned and sprayed and let dry and then put back and so the whole house was in an uproar all day. Fun times, I gotta say.

Anyhoo, good night for now! Hopefully I can get the Jake pillow done tomorrow. If not, then MORE GRANNY SQUARES!!!!!1!!!

Creature Comforts – Day 16 & 17, Blanket and Jake

Once again, I have to stuff two days into one post. January and February are brutally busy times for me, thanks to Girl Scout Cookie sales and Scout Sunday activities. I can get the daily challenge work done, but sometimes I get it done so late at night that I’m too tired to write up even a short blog post. So here are the efforts from today and yesterday!

First, an update on the giant, monstrous granny square blanket…

Granny squares!

Granny is looking good!

That’s two rows of granny squares stitched together. The hardest part of this project is weaving in all the ends. Each square has ends to be woven in, and then when I stitch individual squares together to make a strip, I have to weave in those ends as well. That’s a lot of work. However, I spent most of yesterday at a science fiction convention with the kids, and that actually gave me plenty of time to get these two rows all stitched up.

Now here’s today’s work…

Jake the Dog in progress!

I love Jake the Dog!

This is the second pillow I’m making for my couch. I love Adventure Time, and I especially love Jake, so I had to make a pillow of him, because you just KNOW he could be a pillow if he wanted to.

I’m going back to work on the granny square blanket. Hopefully I’ll have more of that and of the Jake pillow to show you tomorrow.

Creature Comforts – Day 14, Granny Squares!

I took a day off from sewing to do some more work on the granny square blanket. 


Granny Squares!

I’m slowly piecing this together!

In my mind, this blanket not only qualifies as a “comfort” item; it’s also a “creature.” Or rather, a “monster.”I started this blanket last year, when I 64 granny squares. That’s a lot of granny squares – 8 different colors, 8 blocks each. It took me forever to make them, and once they were all made, it was summer so I just put them aside for later.

Now I’m finally stitching them all together, and I’m discovering that no two squares are the same size. They all have the same number of stitches, but the size varies (sometimes a lot) between the squares.

What was I doing when I made these granny squares? Was I drinking heavily? Possibly. It was Girl Scout cookie season when I started this project. Maybe I accidentally used two different sized hooks to make this, or maybe my gauge wasn’t quite as consistent as I thought it was. Whatever the reason, I don’t care. I’m stitching this blanket together anyway. I know it will be lumpy and misshapen when I’m done, but it will also be comfy and cozy and that’s all I care about. I will do a better job on the next blanket. But for now, I just want to get this monstrosity finished.

Creature Comforts – Day 12 & 13, Cushy, cozy B-MO!

I was already to post something last night when my iPad ran out of battery power. I thought about posting this morning instead, but then I got caught up in finishing the B-MO pillow. So here is the picture I was going to post yesterday…


B-MO ready for sewing!

B-MO pieces ready to be sewn!

And then today I took this picture!


B-MO is all done!

“Who wants to play video games?!”

You should know, this is the ONLY thing I got done today, aside from yoga and making my bed. It took me hours to get the appliques done on B-MO, but now he’s finally done! And I am going to cuddle up with him tonight and watch a couple of episodes of “Adventure Time!”

Oh, I also took a photo of the cozy purple hat of DOOOOOOM that I finished on Monday…


Giant Purple Hat of DOOOOOOM!!

Doesn’t Pixie look lovely?!

Aaaaaaaaaaaand I did a litle work on this project…


Granny squares!

“Who’s your granny?”

I have a total of 64 squares to stitch together and then I’ll have a lovely blanket that won’t match my pillow at all, but will still feel pretty cozy 🙂

So yeah, I’ve been busy this week. Time to cuddle with B-MO now. Good night!