My Blanken World

My world of boys, textiles and moving.

16 and 9 February 23, 2011

Filed under: Boys,Family,Homeschooling — blankenmom @ 11:09 pm
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16 years and a few days ago this circus we call our family, started.  And 9 years ago today, the final monkey was born.  I think it was the ceremonial removal of the booster seat from the car that did it for me.  It was the final one, no more carriers, car seats or boosters.  I’m not sure if I want to dance a jig of independence or rock quietly in a corner over it going so fast? 

Oh – if only I had a dozen more monkey’s behind him!

Either way, it’s here and we had fun.  No school on birthdays, so we slept in, went to Chuck E. Cheese and Costco.  He got a “big kid” camera that he’s been asking for since his last birthday, an Oreo ice cream cake and as said before, the removal of his booster seat. 

We picked up a strange little item at Costco, usually our only excitement is who get’s to pick the “fancy” cheese (we’re “High-class” you know!)  But this time we saw “Chocolate Wine” and for $8, why not give it a try?  I’m not a big chocolate fan nor do I like red wine (I prefer a nice Chardonnay) but I had to try it.  It’s not bad – a bit like spiked chocolate milk, but I’d buy it again for a party.

 

Ahhhh vacation…. February 21, 2011

We don’t really get all that many, unless you include our trips from one home to another, so when we get a vacation, it’s extra special.  The in-laws took us to Disney World and brought our 90-year-old granny along, whom we haven’t gotten to see in a long while.

On top of spoiling us for four whole days, we got to leave work, school, bills, the cold, chores, the thought of losing the house and all our problems behind.  Four days of just being. 

After 3 days of non-stop walking, riding, listening, watching, swimming and entertainment, we were exhausted, sore and some (I won’t name – names *cough hubby*) were a bit grouchy.  It was so much fun! 

The first-born is also now 16!  I can’t believe I let him live this long – heeheehee.  And a trip to Disney World for his 16th – talk about SPOILED!  All he got from us was $100 and some ear buds. 

The fourth-born will be 9 on Wednesday and his usual Chuck E. Cheese is looking a bit pale in comparison to Disney, but he’ll have to make due; they all get the day off for his birthday, so they’re pretty excited!

I learned quit a bit on our trip:

You know, as a sewer/knitter/traveler, you’ve traveled to much when you actually think about measuring your dear, sweet hubby WHILE he’s trying to drive…. what, he’s sitting still!

You know you’re a seamstress, when your checking out the sewing on the characters costumes while they’re doing a musical.

You know your old when you think “MUST all these girls swimsuits be so SMALL!”  (And ladies, really, if you have a daughter old enough to wear THAT kind of suit, you should not also be wearing THAT kind of suit – egads!)

It’s sad when you can’t wait to get home to your blow-up bed, instead of the luxury resort bed?!?!

When people go on vacation, they must leave their politeness at home.  “You’re in the ‘happiest place on earth’ folks – take a break from the anger mobile!”

I also had a realization while flipping through the channels – I’m glad we’re not paying for cable anymore…. there really isn’t anything on t.v. anymore.  I can watch it all on the internet and for free or a whole heck of a lot less – saves more money for fabric! 

And the hubby and I were wondering… when did a whole turkey leg become ok for a meal?  I mean, I know your on vacation, but really, a whole turkey leg?

Gnomes 1 and 2 show you the view from our room.

I did end up bringing a knit project to work on; I thought it was a sweater for me and then realized I brought the hubby’s by accident.  (Same yarn and pattern, different colors, size and amounts)  So I started on HIS sweater and 12 rows into it I decided I hate the pattern, not the design so much, but the way they laid out the pattern.  I have to be looking at three different pages for each row…. bleck.  Definitely not a project I’ll be working on while the boys are up.

The boys were very happy to have a few days off from school; not so much so when they got home and had to start back up, especially when they realized that dad had the day off from work.  *Snicker*

The girls did great with their “sitter”…. they didn’t eat her.  She actually said they were very calm and the cat even came out to meow at her on the last day.  I don’t think she came to the right house?

So now we’re back to everyday.  We’ve recovered, cleaned up and downloaded our pictures.  We’re back to reality and ready to face the real world again, I just hope the in-laws know what a great time we had and how much we appreciated this trip.  It was wonderful!

 

Yay for me! February 16, 2011

Filed under: Boys,Family,Homeschooling,Hubby,Knitting,Pets,Places,Sewing — blankenmom @ 2:01 am
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Yay!  I finished the Aran sweater and just before vacation.  Huge load off my shoulders – I’ll get it sent off as soon as I get back.

I held it up to show the hubby and he cracks up and says – “That’s HUGE”!  Yeah, I know.  My dad’s got a barrel chest – wished I could say the same!

The blurry one to show the texture better.

The non-blurry one to show the size. (It's a little to big even for my good-sized, handsome hubby)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

He doesn't look all that big in this picture, but I can't get my arms around him... look at those cute little boys (This was about 7 years ago.)

 
So now that I’m done, what do I take on vacation?  Something for me or for the hubby?  The hubby had a great suggestion… since he’s not really “a lot Irish”,  he’s more English, I should make up a pattern for him.  And English-Irish sweater; I like this idea!  I can’t do it RIGHT now, with everything going on.  But I can certainly be looking out for good stitch patterns that would suit him.  Excellent idea!
 
I haven’t gotten to work on my outfit, but I plan on doing that once we get back.  Especially since I’ve gotten the sweater done. 
 
The boys are very excited over vacation, although they don’t know where we’re going yet.  We just told them that the grandparent’s are visiting.  This should be fun!  Plus, they love that they’re getting out of school.  I don’t often give them days off; usually their birthdays and Christmas.  I’m so mean!  But what’s the perk in homeschooling if we can’t take a day off, here and there, when needed. 
 
The girls however, are less than excited.  They know somethings up, and their “dog sitter” came today to meet them.  They were both cordial, after treats were properly dispensed.  We’ll see how this goes?!
 
 
 
 

The hubby’s home and he brought a visitor… February 12, 2011

Filed under: Hubby,Knitting,Military,Navy,Officer,Pets,Sewing — blankenmom @ 9:39 pm
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YAY!  The hubby’s home, life can go back to normal – or something like that.  And he was nice enough to bring his “friend” the cold home with him.  He got home after everyone was in bed and already this morning everyone has “the funk”.  Even with our new visitor and his giant bag of laundry, I’m super glad he’s home!  (Yeah, yeah – it was only nine days, I have to work my way up to the 6-9 months somehow.)

The boys are enjoying the MRE’s dad brought home.  1500 calorie meal, chock full of chemical goodness!  The fact that you can warm it in a bag, wash your face with it, get your “Mocha” on – all that and a piece of gum – is just to much to resist for them.

Mmmm - who couldn't resist!

I made a new discovery while trying to get my outfit to fit right this week.  (I hope I’m not the only person with this problem)  I discovered that one side of my rib cage is bigger, by about 1/2″, which shouldn’t be an issue with most clothing, except this outfit has no ease, which explains why it didn’t want to fit right.  After adjusting for this odd factor, it’s fitting much nicer now and I’m just working on the finishing touches.

I put the Aran sweater aside for a while to give my hands a rest.  Then I’ll get it sewn together and out the door!

We’ll be leaving on vacation with the in-laws this week and I’m trying to decide what knitting project to bring along.  I would bring a sewing project, but hauling my sewing matching all over tarnation is not my idea of a vacation.  Besides, I hope to be so busy that I’ll be too tired to work on anything, but I still need something for the ride there and back.

We’ll be gone for a few days and it will be the first time I’ve left “the girls” for this long.  I’m feeling a bit ridiculous for worrying this much about dogs!  We have someone coming to watch them, I just hope the Oly Monster behaves herself.  I don’t need a call from her (the dog watcher, not one of the dogs) saying she can’t get in because the dog is going to eat her!

Tonight I’ll be making a third attempt at dying a shirt.  Why people insist on giving me *gag* pink clothes, is beyond me.  I am determined to make it orange.  The first try it came out a nice shade of bright orange, but in a darker room I noticed it didn’t dye correctly and blotched.  My second attempt to re-dye it I added a bit of grey to it to make it more of a burnt orange and the color came out beautiful, but those blotched spots REALLY showed up this time.  Tonight I’ll be removing the dye and starting over, blotch free.  This poor shirt may not take much more abuse!

For the next few days I’ll be washing and packing, washing and packing, so no sewing and stitching, bummer!

 

New sneakers! February 9, 2011

Filed under: Broken/Repaired,Dentist,Hubby,Knitting,Navy,Navy,Sewing — blankenmom @ 1:51 am
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It was the hubby’s birthday on Monday and he got to celebrate down south by sleeping in a “tent” and get pricked, and prick other’s with needles while learning EMT training for triage.  Isn’t that what ALL dentist’s do for their 35th birthday?

I also got to inform him that for his birthday, I had to buy new shoes for myself; yes HAD to – don’t look at me that way!  Turns out, my sneakers (I prefer tennies/tennis/tenny’s? – but I’m not sure how to spell it right?) of six years, finally decided to give out.  I mean REALLY, I’ve only worn them 12+ hours a day, everyday, for the last 5+ years – sheesh!

They were good to me, but it was time.  He might have to be the one to toss them – memories you know. *snicker*

And could you believe it – not ONE pair of orange shoes!  Ok really, I don’t want all orange, but there were only a select few with bits of orange and they just didn’t work for me.  I found some great little sneakers in my 3rd favorite color, teal.  They were a good color, fit right and are supposed to “magically” make my second-butt lift itself back to where it belongs.  Hmmm – I’ll keep you posted on that one….

And, since when did shoes come with dvd’s?  I think I’m getting old when I need instructions included with my shoes?

Left: My new *snazzy* shoes - Right: My poor tired out, well loved shoes

 

Other than that, I’ve been decently avoiding any real work while the hubby’s gone.  I did manage to *finally* find our SSC’s – talk about a load off mom’s back!  The hubby gave me two projects and they’re both halfway done, we wouldn’t want to get to carried away!  The tickets for vacation will be ordered this week and I’m hunting down the part needed to fix the shades we technically broke, but didn’t really.  REALLY!  the part was brittle – I swear!  I just pulled on the little string and *SNAP*! 

I did get the whole Aran sweater knitted, and now I just have to put it together.  I want to get my outfit done first and before the hubby get’s home, but as you can see, I’m working very hard on it!

Hey – I still have 2 1/2 night’s left!

 

The day before – February 2, 2011

The hubby is leaving tomorrow for a few days.  I usually enjoy my “mini-vaca”, where I do all the things he tells me not to do while he’s home.  It usually entails knocking out a wall, building something large or a massive gardening project that he doesn’t really want.

I think he’s safe this time.

We’re in a rental, so knocking out walls is a no-no.  We’re getting ready to move so putting in a garden, or gardening at all in February is not an issue – mind you, it was 75* here today, *snicker*.  And I can’t build anything to large, since it’s a pain to move.

So what’s a girl to do, to get into a little “handy-girl” trouble?

I have some paperwork to hunt down and some tickets to order for when he get’s back – that’s boring “wife stuff” though.  I’ll be working on my outfit from time-out and my sweater, but that’s  “seamstress” stuff.  I have some school paper work to fill out, but yet again, that’s boring “mom stuff”.  There’s a window to repair, cabinets to be adjusted and shades to be removed.  Hhmmm –

I want to take my tools out, I want to get dirty, I want to be sore the next day, I want a little burn on my cheeks (the one’s on my face, thank you very much!).

Nine days after all, is a decent amount of time to get in a good project during the wee hours of the night, after schoolwork is done, after the boys need me, when “mom-time” is over (at least as much as it can be).

I’ve put 5 tons of dirt down in one day, built a cabinet to act as my sewing room and then a year later, moved it downstairs to suit me better.  I’ve repaired a bathroom and re-repaired a bathroom, there has to be something good I can get into?

 And my FAVORITE so far –

Knocked out the wall, pulled out all the weird stuff they had previously stored behind the wall, re-insulated and installed shelving and drawers.

Knocked out the wall, pulled out the straw insulation and added new insulation and put in shelving.

 

So,tonight while we finish packing.  And somewhere between folding laundry, working out, enjoying my knit night and getting in that extra hug before the hubby leaves in the morning, I’ll be searching the net, some books and my mind for some good trouble to get into!

Any suggestions?