Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The Swing and More

How do you like to go up in a swing,
Up in the air so blue?
"Oh I do think it the pleasantest thing
Ever a child can do!"
"Up in the air and over the wall,
Till I can see so wide,
Rivers and trees and cattle and all
Over the countryside"
Till I look down on the garden green
Down on the roof so brown
Up in the air I go flying again,
Up in the air and down!"
-Robert Louis Stevenson

It has been very warm here. At least for Seattle. This morning the house had cooled down to 71 degrees. I opened all the down stairs windows and we are now at 70.
Monday we stayed cool by hanging out in the woods. The kids really wanted a swing- because a rope swing is different from a swingset-so we got some rope and proceeded to make one. Which meant I had to lob the rope up over a branch about 15 high. And get it in the right spot so you wouldn't be on the slant and swing into the tree trunk. I tied several knots at the end to give it some weight and swung it like a lariat. It felt like on of those carnival games. You always just miss it, and there is that big stuffed dog staring and disgusted at your ineptness. Only it was a tree.
I was very encouraged by Natalie, my neice, who kept cheering me on saying "just keep trying. That's how you do something. That was really close." She should be a little league coach or something. Kateri ,on the other hand, was not so optomistic, and cried the whole time about how she wanted a swing and it was taking too long. I was just hoping the kids were staying far back enough so I would not swing the big ball of knots into their heads. I didn't. And with the help of a ladder, a metal wood clamp, and Natalie the swing got done.

Here is Pippin the next day. He wandered out on his own and was swinging away. Naked. Given the lack of attire, this was the best photo I could publish.

Kateri Juarez- I don't think she is taking appointments at this time. Which is good.

I did some more window dressings. Shane tried a blind in here but he didn't like the quality of so didn't put any more in. It has a very pretty view but it gets too much sun and heats up. The new shades don't block so much light as they just soften it. But I like them for now. Especially how they glow in the morning sun. There are two more windows but the sheet was only big enough for two. I have the bottom sheet but that means I will have to do the hem- which are I think my most dreaded part of a garment. That or zippers. Or maybe lining a sleevless and zippered dress.

But I felt very resourceful making the shades. I bought the little spring rods for $3 each. The sheet was from a king size bed but part of it had gotten dyed pink. So I cut it up and there they are. Of course something has to go wrong when I sew- I'm such an optomist-so of course the thread tension kept getting messed up and I had to take out the yards of thread that kept piling up in 1 in of a seam. Then I had to rewind the bobbin because that is what seemed to be causing the problem and I only have one bobbin becasue I bought a whole box of the wrong size. Forutunatley, the fabric was a damask stripe with real, spaced lines. Normally, I don't like stripes because you can tell how far off you were. But these were great as I was only sewing parallel or perpinducular seams. So it made the seams and hem come out quite a bit straighter than I normally like them. I was a little bummed though, when after all the sewing, the iron started leaking rusty water on the fabric. I guess we have had it since we got married. Shane bought it for me because he was tired of having to turn around most Sundays because I was not sure I had uplugged the iron. This one shuts off if you don't move it every so often. But now I guess its time to retire it. I was able to peroxide, vinegar, oxy clean, and bleach my way out of the stain. And this morning they were there, filtering the sun. Looking so pretty in the morning light.
These will be my next project. The actually don't get any direct light but I think the room would feel cozier with some privacy. I'm really excited to go look for sheets. I think I just really like the resourceful feeling I get. I think I get that from my dad. He is the Martha Stewart of mechanics. If he doesn't have a certain tool, he'll weld various metal objects together until he gets what he wants. He made a floor scraper when we were removing the linoleum from the old house. I can't remember what he used but it was great. I think I also get my penchant to reuse containers from his as well. You know those heavey duty plastic jars form Costco for the cashews or whatever. Or the buckets from the powdered detergent with a lid. Most people go out and but containers. But they are really handy for cookie jars, nut jars, nuts and bolts jars. You name it you can put it in a Costco jar. Finally, Shane told me to stop saving them. I had told him how useful they were and he agreed. Then he showed me the 10 or so jars just sitting in the gargage, waiting their turn to be useful. So I have since slowed down on accumulating containers. Now I am on to sheets. Luckily, we have a lot of windows.

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