Friday, January 30, 2009

Renovations, etc

The renovation of the office/sewing/study room continues. We've been busy - the closet is cleared of the items that were stored there; closet doors have been painted; carpet and padding have been removed, rolled, and taped; and the electrician and floor refinishers have been called. You can also see how the walls turned out. The pics are a little washed out because the sun is shining. Here's some new pics:

Here's the corner in front of door. The vents have been painted and put back on the wall. Not sure why he choose to paint them white but that's Ok. You can see just a little bit of the hardwood floors here. The area to the left of the vent is the only place on the floor where there is a patch. It will have to be repaired.

The trim has been installed around the windows. The windows in my house are all over sized. I like that it lets lots of light in but it is challenging when it comes to curtains. Here you can see where the original closets were when this was two separate bedrooms.

Here you see the narrow end of the room. The closet doors look like they are leaning on that freshly painted wall but there is a towel in between the wall and the doors. The cedar closet is cleared of everything but the remnants of the carpet. Next trash pick up is next week. So, it will most likely remain there until then. Again, you can see a little bit of the floors. There are a few nail holes, staple holes, the one patched area, and a couple of loose boards. Overall the floor is in really good condition. It does look like it has the original "very worn" finish but that will be taken care of soon.

I'm waiting on the floor refinisher to show up to check out the floor and give me estimates. I'm beginning to feel like I've been dumped for the day. He said early afternoon about 1 and it's now 2:30. Granted we had horrible weather earlier today but he could at least call and let me know what is going on. I really wanted this guy to do my floors too. He did the rest of the house and he does excellent work. We'll see what happens.

I'm still just dreaming of sewing. I did manage to make it out to JoAnn's yesterday and get the Vogue jacket pattern that I was wanting. I couldn't hardly wait to read the pattern and see how the jacket sent together. I was disappointed to see that the pockets are fake. All jackets need pockets, don't they? I also picked up a McCall's skirt. Don't remember the number, but it had 4 different versions on it.

Happy Sewing

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

and I thought yesterday was bad....

I really spoke too soon when I called yesterday "ICKY". That label belongs to today. Yes, it started early this morning with a 5am call from the school saying there was a 2 hour delay. (Yes, it was really 5am.) Followed 45 min. later by another phone call saying school was cancelled. Oh, why did I give the school my home phone number? I really thought it was a good idea at the time but I didn't know that they would be calling so early in the morning. Needless to say, we all sleep in this morning. I can't remember the last time I slept till 8am. I did assist in clearing the driveway today. It was an heavy icy mix of stuff and took a long time to clear. It was raining the whole time and I was soaked by the time I finished. It started snowing about an hour after I was finished. The daily winter routine has started.

There wasn't much done today in the renovation room. I think everyone was too tired. We vacuumed a bit and moved a few more boxes. Yes, one shelf is almost cleared and you can see the floor. I did remember to call the floor refinishers today and called our real estate agent for recommendations on electricians. A little progress.

Still no sewing, just dreaming. Every box that leaves the closet has to be examined. I'm finding all kinds of stuff I had completed forgotten about. I worked today, too.

Happy Sewing!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Another icky day!

Woke up this morning to more snow and a phone call from the school district that there was going to be a 2-hour delay. I don't mind the delay but I did mind the phone call at 5:45. I couldn't go back to sleep. So, I put my coat on and went out and to help shovel the driveway. I didn't actually help much because I could not locate the second shovel. A little bit of exercise.

I did make it to Curves this morning. I normally go on M-W-F schedule but there wasn't any school yesterday so this week I will go T-Th-S. I hope the weather cooperates. I really prefer going early.

I also moved a few more items from the closet today. Slowly, the items are being moved to the basement. Oh, I just realized I forgot all about calling electricians and floor refinishers today. Guess, I need to make a to do list and follow it. Otherwise, the rest of the room will be done and we will be waiting.

I thought that I would share a favorite crock-pot recipe today (one of my son's favorites). It is an adaptation of a recipe from one of the TV chefs:

Chicken Stew
(serves 4 to 6)

1 small onion, chopped
2 stalks of celery, cut into bite-size pieces
1 or 2 carrots, cut into bite-size pieces
salt & pepper to taste
1 - 14 1/2 ounce can of tomatoes
14 1/2 ounces of chicken broth
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
2 chicken breasts
1 - 15 ounce can organic kidney beans, drained (rinse if not organic)

Put all of the ingredients in the crockpot on low for 6 - 8 hours. Shred the chicken when ready to serve.

I serve this over egg noodles or brown rice or mash potatoes.


Monday, January 26, 2009

Renovation, etc.

The renovation continues to progress - the walls are finished, the trim around the windows Is going up as we speak, closet doors painted, and I have started clearing the closet. The clearing also including washing fabric as necessary. So, of the fabric had dust from sanding on it. I still need to call an electrician and floor finishers. Of course, I will be continuing to clear out the closet. I really have too many sewing related items.

Happy Sewing!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Renovation update, etc...

The room redo is still progressing. The ceiling in the bedroom has been finished. Here's the pics that I promised:

This is looking in the doorway. The green wall is the one that was so rough that it required a skim coat on the entire wall. DH did a wonderful job, don't you think? Oh, by the way, the paint is wet.

This is the wall to the right as you enter the room. It was marked with the previous renovation date.

DH happily painting.

These are first time shown pics of the other side of the room. I'm still standing in the doorway. The wall with the windows is approximately 22 feet. There is my lovely closet which is just waiting to be cleared and a new closet organizer added. The closet is the length of the part of the room and about 5 feet deep. There were a couple of holes in the wall to the right of the window. Again, DH did a wonderful repair job.

Wall to the left of the door and left of the closet. This is where the inventory for my business will be stored.

You know it's cold when the cat is lying next to the fireplace. I was there too going through patterns and DVDs.

I'm still dreaming about sewing. You would think that I wouldn't have a problem finding time to make pjs but I still haven't found it. Tomorrow morning, I have an appointment to get my microwave fixed. I think that will be a good time to work on cutting out the pjs for DS. I still need to add additional length to the pant pattern. Cutting out will most like take the most to time.

I've been looking for pant patterns for my son. I don't understand why no one makes clothing patterns for boys. DS is tall for his age which generally means that is pants look way to big if they are long enough. I would like to be able to make him some pants that aren't so big. If any one knows of any patterns for boys that are well drafted, please let me know.

Happy Sewing!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Renovation update!

The room is still progressing. I thought that I would be painting but DH has taken over. The walls have been primed and look wonderful. As a family, we decided on the "green" color. Today, my son and I picked up the wall paint, the ceiling paint, and the trim paint. Ouch! When did the paint get so expensive? I should have taken pictures this afternoon so that you could see how wonderful the walls look after being primed. Too late! DH has started painting. Let me tell you, they are green. So, I ran and grabbed the camera so I could get some shots. I know that it will darken some as it dries. I'll post pictures tomorrow. Oh, I will be having an electrician in to put in a new circuit or whatever is recommended. I have to find an electrician. I hope that we don't regret the starting of the painting before electrician does he stuff. The reason for the electrician is that the circuit that the outlets is on seem to have a lot of other parts of the house on it (most of the upstairs lights, some of the other outlets on the second floor, some of the outlets on the main floor, and most of the outlets in the basement). I don't want someone to plug in a vacuum cleaner when I have my machines on. I would be an unhappy Momma if the circuit blew while sewing/embroidering or my machine started doing something weird during an embroidery.

My to do list is:
1. call an electrician
2. call someone to finish the floors
3. clear the closet
4. finish painting (ok, so this is DH most likely)
5. remove carpet & padding (DH might let me do this)
6. remove staples from the floors (I bet DH lets me do this)
7. paint trim boards
8. paint closet doors (twice)

Once floors are finished:
8. install trim (seriously, DH's job)
9. 2nd coat on trim
10. put up fans & lights (DH's job)
11. paint door (more decision here)
12. put in new closet organizer (not purchased yet)
13. new curtains for the windows

If you can't tell, I'm getting really excited about this room getting finished. My little 5 x 5 space is OK but a little small.

Happy Sewing!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

It's still cold but...

It's still cold here but warmer than the past two days. It was -9F when we got up yesterday. The fireplace was on all day and it never got warmer than 67F. Spring will be here before we know it.

The room is ready to paint. Yes, next week I will be taking over, priming the walls, and finishing clearing the closet. Yesterday, I went and picked out paint colors. I picked approximately six colors and brought home paint samples. Since I know that the floors will be a natural oak and the new cabinets for the room will be of similar color, I used the floors in the living room to see how "ocre" color will look. It was ruled out immediately as too close in color. That put me down to two colors - Great Green and Raindrop. I said that I might still yet go with the blue but the green is such a calming color. I think I need to go get some samples and paint some boards so I can get a real feel for the colors.

On the sewing front, I really did want to get the pjs made but haven't progressed very far. The fabric has been pressed and that is as far as I got. Well, I did layout the pants on one piece of fabric to see if there would be enough fabric for both a top and pants since the fabric was 60" wide but there wasn't. Maybe today, I will get them cut out. I know once they get cut out that the sewing will be fast even without using the serger (yes, I'm still missing those tools to change needles).

Ok, off to change clothes and help clear the driveway.

Happy Sewing!

Friday, January 16, 2009

It's been a busy week.....

It's been such a busy week that I didn't realize that I haven't posted since Monday. Wow! Where did my week go?

I'll start with renovation news. DH has been working very hard. The walls are almost finished. I think what is remaining is hole repair. He's been fixing and sanding all week. The baseboards have almost all been removed and the tack strip. Upon removing one section of the tack strip, a patch in my lovely oak floors was discovered. EEK! That adds time and $$ to having the floor finished. Of course, we won't know what the entire floor looks like until I cut up the carpeting and pull out the padding. There are also many other decisions that need to be made.

On the sewing front, I am getting ready to start sewing up some more flannel pjs. Other pair for my son and a pair for myself. I've been putting off the pjs for me until I lost a little more weight. I finally decided to make the pjs and I can buy more fabric if I really do loss the weight. It's just fabric. So the goal tonight is to get the little boy pjs cut out. I think I can, I think I can.....

The weather has been tremendously cold. When we got up this morning, it was -6F. A little bit chilly. That is what made me decision to make the pjs. It's cold. Tomorrow we'll have a heat wave at 20F. Really, I don't mind the cold that much as long as my fireplace is running or the electric throw is on. I do enjoy watching it snow.

I saw yesterday that the new spring patterns have arrived. There was very little that interested me this season. Following is Simplicity jacket 2307. It's a cute jacket.

Here's Simplicity 2697. I really like this blouse pictured.

This McCall 5815 jacket is also cute:

Here's is Vogue 1100. The jacket and the blouse are both really nice.

Looks like the jackets have it for spring. I don't know if I will get any of these patterns but these are my picks. I'm sure that I've overlooked some really cute pattern.
Well, off to see what else I can get into tonight.
Happy Sewing!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Renovation and ramblings.....

The room renovations continue. DH is sanding as I type. We just keep finding things - cracks in the ceilings, the newish closet wall wasn't taped and mudded correctly, and lots of other spots that were not mudded and sanded correctly. There has been lots of skim coating going on. All of the walls have had the glue removed and washed twice. A third washing on all the walls will occur when we're ready to paint. I still need to completely empty the closet. We want to put in a new closet organizer. However after seeing how badly the walls are on the room side of the closet, I'm dreading really looking at the closet. I know that DH will want everything perfect. I need to start looking for an electrician. I want my own circuit in this room for my sewing equipment and computers. It might be nice to get a couple of the outlets off of the switches, too. The "wish list" could get really long. In the next week or so, I will start gathering paint samples to see what shade of green or ochre(?) that I would like to have. I can change my mind and run with blue. We'll see what happens.

On the sewing front, there hasn't been anything other than dreaming. I have been reading my new magazines and books when I take DS to his karate class or math classes. I have a UFO that I would really like to finish and there is a contest running at Pattern Review. Maybe I'll join it just to give myself that extra push to finish. Oh, I did do something sewing related this week. I purchased several new feet for my new sewing machine and some new designs. Well, I can dream...

Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Things are progressing.....

The sewing room is progressing. DH has been working diligently and I've been assisting with some of the clean-up. He seems to have more energy than I do right now. He finished the hard part of removing the border using the steamer. However, he also decided that he didn't like the trim around the windows and now I do not have any trim. Oh, well, it will look good when it's done. Today, I picked up the little bits of the border, removed the remaining filing cabinets, and moved a few other things from the room. The closet still needs to be emptied. I'm running out of room to put all of my excess sewing stuff. I've been putting it in the basement but I have a kitty that I'm afraid will decide that it makes a great bed.

On the sewing front, I've been too busy to even think about any sewing. I do have a couple of projects planned - flannel pjs for myself and my son. Both should be a quick, easy projects and very satisfying. Not only that it will make nice little dent in that fabric stash. The 8-9 yards of flannel take up a lot of space.

That's it for now. I still have a lot of work (as in my business) to do tonight.

Happy Sewing!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

We're Home! etc, etc, etc

We finally made it home last night after 2 long days of driving. The kitties were happy to see us even though both were a little bit skiddish. Both kitties have been happy and purring today. The stack of mail was huge but there were a few goodies in among the bills, magazines, and newspapers. The new Threads was there. I have flipped through it and the article on Perfect Proportions looks like it will be interesting. There was a new book - Seams to Me. Again, I have flipped through it. There are several interesting projects in the book. This book appears to be written for a beginner with lots of information on the basics. The last item that I found was a Hot Patterns pattern - Prudence Blouse. I purchased this from an individual. I'm looking forward to using this pattern. This is the first Hot Patterns pattern that I have and I'm hoping that I like the pattern.

Well, has everyone made their New Year resolutions? I have made a few regarding sewing:

1. REDUCE the stash... Since I have been working on moving the sewing room and guest room around I've realized just how much fabric that I own and it's a little bit too much. Some of the children's prints will be listed at Pattern Review.

2. Sew more... The last 3 years has found me spending very little time sewing but I plan on changing that drastically this year. With the purchase of my new sewing machine, I have lots of things to learn.

Really, I guess that is it for sewing. My other resolutions are exercise more, and lose a little more weight. Both of these were on last year's resolutions and I feel good about the fact that I did both. However, I know that I need to bump it up more if I want to continue down the weight loss path.

DH is working in the new sewing area. The sander has been going. Before we let on our trip, he began working on the wall that had the most problems by putting on a skim coat. I will start washing down the remaining walls and working on removing the dreadful border.

Well, that's it for now.

Happy Sewing!