Monthly Archives: August 2010

End of Summer

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Unfortunately, it’s the end of summer vacation already.  It’s been a very busy summer, and a very nice summer and I wish it wasn’t ending already.  I was away from home for about a third of the summer, and spent another week and a half up in my sewing room working on Becca and Emily’s Irish dance dresses.  I finally finished my part and now they need Ann to attach the jewels to them.   I’ll be anxious to see the finished dresses on the pretty dancers 🙂

Jonathan and Sayaka were here last weekend after taking Sayaka’s belongings to Boston where she’s going to attend grad school.  Bubba and Jeremy enjoyed swinging on the swings at church!

Tonight we had an impromptu end of summer cookout and fire at Amy’s house.  She bought some delicious hot dogs at a local meat market, made some pasta salad, and we had s’mores – yummy!

The girls were playing with the Fisher Price Little People that used to be their mommy’s which reminded me that while we were on vacation this summer, we found a FP farm (newer than ours) at an antique shop with a $85 price tag!

Today was Megan’s first soccer game and her team won.  She played defense and played with her mouthguard the whole time 🙂  It was a nice sunny day and we got a little sunburned watching the game.

Yesterday, I went school shopping with Jeremy, Lois, and Peyton.  Peyton got some clothes at Old Navy along with a cool black cat led flashlight.  I got a couple pairs of pants for me too.

Thursday, I took Abby to Pittsburgh for her birthday shopping trip.  This is the first time I’ve taken her anywhere all by herself and I found out she’s a great shopper!  Her only problem is that when she has too many choices, she’s overwhelmed and can’t decide.

Maybe Back to Normal?

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After having trouble with my computer for a couple weeks and not being able to upload any pictures or look at any video without it locking up or being able to play any games on the internet, the motherboard went bad and my computer was not fixable without spending more money than a new one would cost.  I went without a computer for a week or so and then went to MicroCenter near Detroit and bought a new one.  I got one that’s a little bigger than my tiny 13″ – this one is 14″.  I worked with my new computer a little but didn’t have much time since I was working a lot on Irish dance dresses, then we went on vacation for a week and I decided at the last minute to leave my computer at home.

I spent 4 1/2 weeks away from home this summer and am ready to stay home for a while!  I spent a week with Jessica in June while John was riding on GOBA, then I spent a week and 1/2 with her to help her get ready to move then get settled in at the new house. After that, I stayed with Brian and Michelle to work on the dresses for Becca and Emily.  Last week we went to the East coast with Bill and Diane and had a very nice vacation.

We left last Sunday morning after church and drove to Lake George, New York to spend the night.  Monday morning, we drove to Fort Ticonderoga to spend the day. There were a lot of cannons and guns for the guys to look at and some nice exhibits to look at.  I spent some time with a young woman who was demonstrating hand sewing and examined her measuring tape, pin cushion, and thread bobbins.

When we left the fort, we rode on a ferry across to Vermont. It was a neat experience.  We drove on some secondary roads across Vermont and saw many nice homes and lots of beautiful flowers.  We stopped in Montpelier at the visitors center and found out there was a yarn shop nearby!  After visiting the yarn shop, we drove on to New Hampshire to go see Mount Washington.  By the time we got to the entrance of the 8 mile road, we found it was closed until 7:30 in the morning so we found a motel room nearby in Goreham, NH.  We went to Crabby Jack’s Mexican restaurant and had a nice supper.

Tuesday morning, it was very foggy so we decided to drive on to Maine.  We stopped in Bangor and looked through an antique mall where I found a 1986 Fisher Price farm for $85!  Amy has our old FP farm and it’s from the early 1970s – I wonder what price they would put on it?!?

We drove on to Bar Harbor to our motel room and rode the free shuttle bus into the downtown area where we shopped in some of the many little shops.  Then we had a nice supper where I tried to eat lobster – it was really difficult to break the shell apart so I could get the meat out!  I’m glad I tried it, but I think once is enough 🙂

Wednesday morning, we went on a whale watching trip and thoroughly enjoyed it! We saw at least ten whales and the crew of the ship said we saw more whales than they normally see.  It was very cold out on the ocean – the temperature was supposed to be in the 40s  and the ship moved pretty quickly from the shore to the whale-feeding area – so we had to buy some warm clothes and definitely were glad we had them. 

Wednesday afternoon, we went to Acadia National Park to Cadillac Summit, the highest point on the East coast; Sand Beach, where we waded in the ocean and the seaweed; and Thunder Hole, where the surf splashes up from a hole in the rocks. That evening, we went back downtown to eat at the Main Street Diner and to shop some more.  I noticed a lady knitting in one shop and stopped to ask her if there was a yarn shop in Bar Harbor.  She said there was one but it was already closed for the day.  She told me about a shop that would be on our way to our next stop 🙂

Thursday morning, we slept in!  We stopped in Belfast, Maine, where I visited the yarn shop and bought some yarn that was made in Maine.  We continued on to Gloucester, Massachusetts to the visitors center to get information on the area.  After we got settled into our motel room then went to Good Harbor Beach, a nice big clean beach where we spent quite a bit of time wading and walking along the shoreline.  The water was noticeably warmer than the water at Acadia and had much less seaweed. Then we went to eat at Causeway Restaurant, a place that looked like a sleazy bar but actually served great-tasting food.  While we were waiting for our food, Diane and I watched a man devour two small lobsters very quickly!  We could tell he was very experience getting the meat out of the lobster – every movement was quick and productive.

We left Gloucester Friday morning at around 7:30 to go to Mystic, Connecticut to visit Mystic Seaboard.  We spent quite a bit of time touring the Charles Morgan, the last wooden whaler, that is being restored there.  The guide told us many interesting facts about the ship and whaling, which sounds like a very dangerous business.  Most men only went on one (low paying) whaling trip – if they were lucky enough to return home from it!  This ship’s purpose was to process the whale after it had been brought in by one of the five smaller ships that were stored on this big ship.

We also visited most of the exhibits at Mystic Seaboard – the blacksmith, the barrel maker, woodcarver, etc.  They had a small replica of a lighthouse, a drugstore with a doctor’s desk I’d love to have, a church, a school, etc.  We spent some time in a print shop where we got to see some tiny pieces of metal that were individual letters in size 6 font that were used to print flyers and newspapers.  We were told where the terms “upper case” and “lower case” came from – the capital letters were stored in a tray (upper case) that was above the tray (lower case) with the small letters!

We ate supper that evening at Friendlys restaurant and decided instead of spending another night in a motel, we would go ahead and drive home.  We got home and into bed at 3:00 a.m. Saturday morning.  It’s always nice to be home!

I Finally Figured It Out! Maybe…

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My computer had a lot of problems and kept locking up and finally quit working altogether.  The computer guy John took it to said the motherboard was broken.

Then I got a Droid and had good access to the internet and email again.  I hoped to be able to blog from it but couldn’t seem to make it work until tonight when I realized there was an app for WordPress on the market place.  I’m trying it out and hope to be able to add pictures.

This has been a busy month for me.  After attending CPR and first aid class on July 13, I went to Jessica’s on the 14th to help her get ready to move.  After we got to Toledo, I helped her unpack then made some curtains for her new house.  I decided to stay in Toledo an extra week so I could sew Irish dance dresses for Emily and Becca.  I finally came home July 30th.

The dresses have been a challenge for me!  There don’t seem to be patterns available, so I had to use top patterns and add skirts to them.  My next problem was trying to put nonstretchy zippers on stretch velvet.  The fabric puckered when I tried to machine sew AND when I tried to sew by hand.  Finally, I had to get a lining fabric and a tape that would stabilize the fabric.  The job has been easier since then, but VERY time consuming!  There are three tiered ruffles on the skirts which had to be stuffed with netting to give them some body.  It takes hours and hours – pinning, then gathering by hand because there’s too much fabric to gather by machine.  Today I applied two of the ruffles to Becca’s bodice and it looks great!

Now I’ve run out of time to sew and need to get ready to go on vacation out East.  I got a new backpack to hold my new, slightly bigger computer and its paraphernalia.  I’m still in the process of adding the bookmarks I was lucky enough to write down before my old computer crashed.

Now to try adding pictures.  This phone has a very nice camera that takes good pictures – my only problem being that I’m taking pictures outside and because of sunlight and using less background light to save my battery, I can’t see the camera well!

John sent me a couple pictures of Peyton when they were waiting for Lois at her doctor appointment in Altoon.

Today Amy and the girls and I met Brian, Michelle and their girls on their way home from New Jersey.  The cousins hadn’t seen each other for quite a while.