Working Wednesday: April 18, 2018

I’m working on the disaster area that is my kitchen and actually making progress.  It’s not clean yet, but it’s not as horrifying as it was.  This is Kitchen Week, and I figure if I just keep at it every day, I can have the sucker clean by Sunday.  At which point it will be Living Room Week.  The problem is, I shut down when it gets truly cold and dark, so I’ve got four months of hermit slobbishness to clean up.  I can do it.  Probably.  .  And I got a lot done on the afghan I started in November of 2016,, so there’s that.  And I fixed a hole in the first act of Nita.  I worked.

So what did you work on this week?

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90 thoughts on “Working Wednesday: April 18, 2018

  1. I finished (this short but extra-intense bout of, at least) radiation yesterday so I need to work up the courage to talk with my lead oncologist about increasing my chemo pill back to its pre-radiation levels. The radiation was just for my two largest tumors, so the chemo pill is supposed to be helping hold the others steady. He halved my dose when I got miserably sick the other week, and I’m not looking forward to going back to the full dose. However, it’s better than the alternative, I suppose.

    In the meantime, I’m working on reclaiming as much life as I can, cleaning out my closets, and trying to train for a 5k to raise money and awareness for women’s gynecologic cancers (see bit.ly/cancerpenguins to learn the common symptoms — most boil down to “see a doctor if there’s anything weird with your lady bits and lady times!” Note–I am not asking for cherry donations. Simply getting to lurk in these comments and read the books you all recommend is more than enough!). Pre-radiation I was able to do the 5k in about 55 minutes with a lot of effort, so I want to get back to that. I did also schedule a reward massage for myself for tomorrow to motivate me to try today and not just collapse on my couch with a good book and the latest Supergirl and Black Lightning episodes!

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    1. I agree with see a doctor for any suspicious twinges of lady bits. I had a pain off and on for a long time and would go to the doctor but nothing was found until the last time I went. Long story short turns out I had a tumor on my ovary and had ovaries and fallopian tubes removed. I’ve graduated this year from going to the center from semi-annual to annual follow up visits. Always look forward. I watched the last 45 minutes of the Boston Marathon (from the comfort of my home) to see the determination of the runners in all that nasty cold and rainy weather especially the women’s winner Desiree Linden, actually the cameras focused on her more than the men. Go for it!

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      1. I’m so sorry you went through that, but encouraged that you *got* through it, if that makes sense.

        The marathon runners are super human to me!

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    2. For awhile I was getting chemo once a week, so I’d go in and get in the IV after school and then by the time I got home, my friends would be at my house with a party (music and cards and laughter) and it would get through me the immediately-after. It’s important to treat yourself because you deserve it, to laugh and forget. I also found out that pot helps tremendously with the nausea. Best of luck with everything.

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      1. Friends are amazing at coping with thd crap parts. One is flying in from Canada and asked if she could drunk clean my apartment. She sounded so excited, I silenced my pride and said yes. I’m in awe that you worked through chemo. I did that the first time, and by the end was literally crying from exhaustion. This time I’m under strict orders to be on disability other than a few freelance assignments that feed my soul and to just focus on my health. My inner type A chafes at the lack of productivity…

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        1. I was deep in denial that there was anything wrong (Stage 3 colon cancer? yes, there was something wrong), so I went back to work early and just kept going for four months and then once day, I crashed. I do not recommend this process. You’re doing the smart thing.
          Also I was teaching junior high art, and the kids all knew, so I sat down a lot,and they brought me things. Wonderful kids.

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          1. I’m grateful that you had wonderful students. I think I was in denial the first time I went through chemo, hence pushing until I cried in exhaustion. But hearing the words “it’s in your lungs” made it deadly serious and much, much scarier. It’s not surprising most of my books and television since then have been comfort reads or withdrawals from reality!

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          2. Comfort is really important since stress can speed things up. Good for you for going for comfort.

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    3. Wow, chemo AND a 5k. Sending all the energy vibes your way. Except for the part where you relax into the massage (saw what you did there. that’s so smart).

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      1. Thank you! I’ll be proud if I complete it. I just want to be worthy of everyone who has donated. Even though I know a lot of the most promising research right now won’t help me directly, knowing that there are better screenings and ways to find these cancers much, much earlier when there’s a better shot at full recovery fills me with joy. I want others to not have this fight, or at least have a much easier fight.

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    4. So glad this bout of radiation is over. I know it was really tough. I’m so impressed that you’re going to do the 5K. In truth, I find you remarkable. Hang in there!

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      1. Thank you! During my first bout of chemo, I was like that. During my in-patient chemo they would insist that whoever was visiting me would force me to shuffle slowly around the circular wing and other friends would pop over during their lunch break to force me outside and keep me from falling on the slowest-ever walks around my tiny block. Thankfully I then was on a medicine that allowed me to recover a lot for a few months and the chemo pill doesn’t yet seem to be as bad as the infusions. I hope that you have a lifetime remission.

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    5. Good Luck with the chemo! And the five k! And thank you raising money for women’s gynecologic cancers! I have one friend battling ovarian cancer and another fighting cervical cancer! One’s in her thirties and one’s pushing thirty! Keep up the good fights!

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      1. Oh, good luck to your friends. I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer when I was 30, shortly before my wedding. If either of them ever want to talk with another adult dealing with this crap at this age, please let me know and I’ll get you my contact information. My website should be linked to from my name. Stupid Cancer has also been an awesome help.

        It’s this weird in-between age where no one else in the waiting rooms, except for the parents of kids with cancer, appear to be your age. I never wanted kids, thankfully, but part of withdraws when friends talk about trying to get pregnant. I snapped at one on a bad day when she complained about hating her uterus and wanting to yank it out. I apologized profusely once I got over my snit, but she still looked horrified and hasn’t repeated that uterus-yanking desire around me…

        And I couldn’t imagine not trying to raise money. I’ve benefited from living as close to an amazing research hospital and having a friend at NIH who helped me get an appointment with the top uterine surgical oncologist in the country because all of her colleagues said they would go there if they or a loved lady had a tumor that presented like mine did. I need to pay some of that luck and kindness forward. One of the best meds I’ve been on was only approved within the past few years — that’s me directly benefiting from really recent research. Plus, selfishly, based on statistics I need research and a breakthrough if I want to read the next Crusie book whenever it comes out. So, ultimately, it’s a very very selfish act.

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    6. Good luck with the chemo! I can’t even imagine how exhausting it must be, but have close family who’ve gone through similar cures so I have a tiny idea at least. Kick the cancers butt! I hope you’ll feel better soon. <3

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  2. I am finished with a resin and leaf collage. I used a very heavy duty aluminum tape to create a dam for the resin layers, and that tape will not peel off. So I’ve still got to either find a way to have it sawn off, or sanded off. Eh. The whole thing was a learning process. I couldn’t get a photo that was decent, but in person it looks like a pool of water with leaves in it. The upper layer of leaves cast shadows on the ones below.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/Bhtf3fYnsiC/

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    1. Have you tried using alcohol? I don’t know however if it would do something to the resin. There is also Goof Off but again whether it would react to the resin is something I would worry about. Another thing to try is to get one of those razor blade scrappers for cleaning paint splatters off glass and very carefully try to scrape and edge off and see if that can get it off without scratching the resin.

      I am always screwing up with adhesives and working to get them off. I have a new marble counter from which periodically I need to remove etching marks and have discovered the wonders of 1000 and 2000 grit sandpapers for getting sanding marks off smooth soft surfaces.

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      1. Oh. And there is always the miracle solution – boiling water. Repeated applications of it to the duct tape might soften it enough to get it to start dissolving. If you have some resin cured on some scrap that you don’t care about, you could try some of these on it to see what happened before you accidentally messed up your collage. It came out beautifully. It would be a shame to damage it.

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        1. Eucalyptus oil does wonders with getting paint and glue off things. And it clears the nose while you’re doing it.

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    2. I think it’s beautiful in the photo. Would it be possible to just cover the aluminum tape with gold leaf, or even copper foil a la stained glass?

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      1. I was figuring if I can’t get it off, I could attach thin pieces of stained wood for a frame.

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        1. Have you ever tried modeling clay as a dam? I think that’s what I used when making a “stained glass” picture out of poured sugar in cooking school. It peeled off fairly well.

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  3. I’ve been doing my proof-reading, and also worked on exhibition pieces last week – which I now need to finish. But going through the mess of a contract for my house purchase (for the third time) took over. The vendor’s solicitor refuses to amend it and has also not supplied many pieces of information/answers to queries, which we’re waiting on. I really don’t know if it’s going to work out. The delays are costing me thousands. Nothing else that grabs me has come on the market. But I’m feeling bullied; and I can’t afford to agree to provisions that may cost me loads more money in future.

    I need to sit down with my solicitor and talk it through, but she’s waiting for the outstanding queries to be answered first.

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      1. They’re fuckwits. The system here doesn’t help, but if they’d employed a competent solicitor and generally acted professionally, I’d have been in months ago, along with at least two other buyers. But three people (a father and daughter, plus another buyer) have gone ahead regardless. They may have just needed to move, not wanted to lose a sale on their old house, or had an equally useless conveyancer: I don’t know.

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  4. I’ve mostly been working on not freaking out with the (mostly good) stuff that’s being thrown at me.

    After saying on Sunday that I had two weeks to get Billie Jean (rescued stray pregnant cat) used to me before she gave birth, I woke up Monday morning to find the first of five kittens in the cage. See picture at Instagram. (And ignore the dirty cage — BJ’s too freaked to let me clean, and I don’t want to stress her too much.) I’ll work on kitten-face close-ups for next #workingwednesdaypix

    And after mumbledy-forever years, I signed a contract with a literary agent yesterday to see if I can get some traction for future books with a larger publisher than my current one (and my current publisher is being very supportive of this step in my career).

    And, while it wasn’t my work alone by any stretch of the imagination, I did my little part in the work that led yesterday to the first-ever treatment for my rare musculoskeletal disorder being approved by the FDA yesterday!

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    1. Oh, excellent on the kittens and agent and new treatment stuff. I can see the stress level there, but such good news!

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        1. Now I want a kitten. I can’t have one with three dogs (and I’d adopt an adult at this point anyway) but I still want a kitten.
          You did a good, good thing there.

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        2. Oh my gosh, all the fluffy love in that picture! I wanna shrink down and crawl in for a nap myself.

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  5. My eyeballs are tired after reading all the television comments this week, but thanks to whoever recommended to watch for Sandra Oh in the series Killing Eve on BBC, I’m looking forward to it.

    After making meatballs for over 50 years I’ve changed the recipe up by adding a chunk of mozzarella cheese to the center of each ball for a surprise.

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  6. We put down new flooring in the laundry room! It was touch but it’s done but for the edging. Need caulk. Don’t wanna buy it.

    Today we are moving some stuff around and cleaning the room. I also am going to get a call about a very simple freelance job. Yay! And follow up with a client about payment on something else.

    Money! Progress! Woo!

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  7. This morning I’m mostly working on staying awake. XP I’m also working on finishing the mandala baby blanket in time for the baby shower this weekend (I’d post pics but the mom follows me on Instagram, so I’ll have to save them for next week). Also gardening (I gave away so many extra seedlings this week, which was lots of fun) and choir rehearsals for our concert Sunday afternoon… I can do it all, right? *flails*

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  8. I made several screencap comics, 3 of which were putting Brooklyn Nine-Nine quotes on PoI images.

    I did an Asparagus-Turkey breast-egg fried rice, and a potato-egg-spam-peas-carrots breakfast hash. The former lasted 3 servings, the latter lasted 6.

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    1. I read “breast-egg” and thought, “I suppose a sunny side up looks like a breast. It takes me awhile sometimes.

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    2. I hate to tell you how long I was wondering what a breast egg was…maybe another cafe latte will get me going properly?

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  9. All the wallpaper is removed from the closet and the walls washed and all the loose paint scrapped from the ceiling, i. e., there are only patches of paint still adhering to it. Now if I can figure out what to do with woodwork with its 90 year accumulation of peeling latex and oil paints.

    It may be possible to convert it into a studio/painting room. It has a window and excellent indirect light and is about 4 1/2 feet wide by 7 feet long and the shelf on one side is easily 7 feet up so my easel slides right under it. I had stopped painting with the remodel going on because there was no place that I could risk messing up anymore. My husband thinks this is a great idea and is encouraging me to take an expensive (which is why I hesitate – I am not that great of painter) plein air class to get me started again.

    And there may be room to fit in my stone sculpture easel which has lived out side for years and is one of the reasons I have two stone pieces that I stopped working on (It rains 7 months of the year). This one is iffier. Two easels might be pushing my luck. I will need to be able to move around a bit and maybe have a stool in there also.

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    1. Go for it – it’s about doing it, rather than your judgement of the results. If it makes you happy, it’s definitely something to invest in.

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  10. The neighborhood banded together, and we won! Even as I stood at the microphone addressing city counsel, I thought of another, better way to go with the research, so save for next time. Meanwhile, a beautiful large old house that dominates and is the neighborhood soul stays intact. And so does the sprawling leptospermum tree I helped protect.

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    1. *I accidentally posted that ^

      I gave my two weeks notice! My family is moving from cold, dreary Missouri to sunny Tampa, where I will start a different, better, scarier job. It’s exciting but also terrifying.

      The great thing is that we will still live on the water (going from a house on a river to a house on a lagoon). We will be five minutes from the beach and we can kayak or swim every day! We are REALLY looking forward to spending more time outside.

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  11. I have been painting jeans jackets this week and having a lot of fun with it. I think I will use them for a show I have coming up in June, which is unexpected. I was planning something else entirely.

    And I went to my County Commissioners Office this morning and talked to the gentleman who also happens to be on the board of the library where I work. We’ve got some uncomfortable things happening lately. I don’t know if it will do any good, but I feel better for taking action, even if it makes life difficult for me for a while.

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    1. Ooh, pix please (if it won’t interfere with your show). I have no painting ability, but am feeling the urge toward unique clothes instead of mass-produced “fast fashion.”

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      1. But it’s not showing up on my WorkingWednesdayPix feed. Perhaps the website (which I use) isn’t as reliable as the app?

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          1. It’s still not there, Lupe. Did you use #workingwednesdaypix ? I notice someone had used just #workingwednesday, which wouldn’t feed in.

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          2. Just checked: there are thousands of #workingwednesday posts, which is presumably why Jenny chose the longer hashtag for us.

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          3. Yep, I searched for variations on Working Wednesday until I came up with WorkingWednesdayPix. Nobody had that one.

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  12. I am giving myself a week off of heavy work after realizing I was Bone Tired. I did make three salad-ish preparations over the weekend and actually cooked dinner on Monday (this is rare on work nights). There is a remote chance I might do some weeding in the pollinator garden this evening. There is also a non-remote chance I might be back on the couch with the remote!

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  13. I finished putting borders on the orange and gray quilt, so now it is time to send it to be quilted. I’m feeling pretty good about how it’s looking so far. And the old adage is right – better finished than perfect.

    Back in February when it was warm, my husband and I tackled the wild growth on our public facing street. We stacked up a lot of debris – including 15 yr old growths in the crape myrtles that we thinned. This past Saturday was the time that weather and other activities came together and we loaded it up and carted it to the dump. I feel so much better now that chore is done!

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      1. Beautiful!

        I’ve mostly been working on writing. My WIP is actually a romcom (or a contemporary romance with humor, depending on what you want to call it). It took me forever to get into it, but it is finally zipping along and I should have a long enough partial to send to my agent in the next few days. Then I just pray she likes it…

        And that we can then find an editor who likes it enough to buy it…

        I am still doing some cleaning/clearing/rearranging to kitten-proof a house I thought was already kitten-proofed. (Not even close, at least with the Wild Bunch, apparently.) The most recent thing was moving the bin of small potatoes (harvested from my garden last year and starting to sprout a bit) from the kitchen counter to the mudroom, where the kittens don’t go. In the middle of the night, one of the little monkeys got on the counter, dug under the cloth protecting the potatoes, and then threw a potato on the floor where all three of them chased it around until I got out of bed and confiscated it. Sigh.

        Not sure this link will work, but here’s a picture of Koshka, my lion boy. https://www.instagram.com/p/Bf7ABkKlHf-/?taken-by=deborahblakeauthor

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  14. Well, drama from me as usual. My latest rescue, Oreo, (https://www.instagram.com/p/BhuvYWWjkgF/?taken-by=sixmcgeorges) had to have surgery to get her patella back in place today. I was antsy all day. then I got word that she’s fine and the animal surgeon’s office staff want to keep her. She’s the ticket, they said.

    After I find out she’s okay I drop an entire pizza face down on my filthy floor. It’s my daughter’s pizza. Drama and more drama. She’s refusing to eat anything I make. Well heck. She’s old enough to make her own food. Stinker.

    My question is why dump it after I know everything is okay? Shouldn’t everything be fine now? I’ve never dumped a pizza before. Luckily dogs like cheese and sauce. I didn’t have to clean… I need to clean and it would have been a really good excuse.

    I’m down to the last two chapters on the ghostwriting project. Going to whizz through them and get this off to my client. Money, money, money.

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    1. The relief, probably, and you relaxed too much?? That’s how it always goes for me. I keep it together until immediately after the crisis, when I implode.

      Good luck with the last two chapters. 🙂

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  15. I am heading over to my new house now to clean. This has been the never-ending saga of a short sale. I made the offer last August, we closed April 6, and they finally finished the funding and everything on the 12th. Then today there were more papers to sign because they’ve already sold the mortgage. Sigh. So my work right now is mostly cleaning and scrubbing. A different type of disaster than yours, Jenny.

    I’m also nearly done with a cable wrap out of a lovely wool crepe of autumn colors. If I can post a photo here when I finish it, I will. I’m about 2/3 done.

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  16. I recovered from the crud. It caught me early in March, and I’ve spent six weeks utterly exhausted, but m on my 4th day of no naps needed and it’s amazing how much I can get done. I was sleeping 10-14 hours a day there for a while. Thankful that I have the flexibility to do that. Nasty viruses this year.

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  17. All right I KNOW(!) it’s Thursday but yesterday was too packed with things to do. I was so exhausted when I came home that Fiancé offered to cook, and that says a lot.

    I had a friend over from Sweden for four days, a girl some 5 years younger than me. I tried to teach her how to make pasta au gratin, but I ended up doing most of the job because we differ too much in kitchen skill. We made Swedish chocolate balls together though, which is basically just mixing butter, sugar, porridge oats (dry ones, not already porridged 😉 ), cacao and a bit of water or coffie (or rum or baileys or anything else that’s fluid)together to a sort of dough, rolling bite-sized (or larger, smaller, whatever) balls of it, rolling the balls in some topping (like shredded coconut or, what we also did, hagelslag [Dutch chocolate sprinkles]), put them in the fridge for a while and then eat yourself sick. They ended up being very chocolaty, for she didn’t really measure things when she put in the cacao powder, which meant we had to add more sugar which in turn meant I had enough after approx. 1 ball, but still. Tasted like home.

    I had the ambition to also make raspberry and white chocolate muffins while she was here, but it just didn’t work out. Maybe I’ll make some later this week.

    I didn’t finish my rabbit or cow from last week, but I gave my visitor another of my previously decorated savings-animals: a cat. I put some photos of it on Twitter earlier today:
    https://twitter.com/shassmusic/status/986897059512029184 (I hope the link works)
    I haven’t made the cat myself, it’s a terracotta cat I bought at the Creativity Fair about a year ago. I only do the foam- and silk clay decorations, which means the stripes in this case. For me it’s almost therapeutic to do this, giving each savings-creature its own colour and design. They all end up different, with different patterns and colours and, sometimes, bows or other extras. What all the cats have in common, however, is that I never give them eyes. I think they have character enough without. Some of the other saving-animals already have eyes (that you can feel) in their base design or just don’t feel right without, but the cats feel good this way. For me. Also, creating creatures without eyes has been a bit of my… “trademark” ever since I started making clay figurines during art class at school when I was 14. So for instance I have one blue dragon here at home without, but I also have two with, so it depends a bit on how things “talk” to me while I create. Does that sound nuts? Like, I can have as many plans as I want when I start with a lump of clay, but it’ll “design itself” as I go. Last time I tried to make a dragon it ended up as a pig… I can never tell on beforehand.

    I’ve also started to feel the itch of wanting to sew plushies again. I have these wild ideas in my head of cuddly huggable creatures sown by hand…. I really really really want to do that. If I can find someone who can help me get started.

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    1. No worries about it being Thursday. I’ll probably get my stuff up this weekend.
      Have you looked on Pinterest for stuffies? There are usually free patterns on there.

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      1. I haven’t, but I’ll ask somebody sighted to check things out for me 🙂 Thanks for the reminder!
        I decided not to let my dreams die again this time, so I sent a message to a friend yesterday after writing my comment and asked her if we could go look at/touch fabric next time she comes visiting. She said yes, so hopefully my cuddlies-visions might get somewhere this time. So happy!

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        1. Oh, hell, I forgot about your eyes. I’m sorry (I get really tired of reminding people about mine.) Good on the excellent friend, too.

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  18. It was my birthday yesterday, so I let somebody else do the work on my hair:

    https://www.instagram.com/p/Bhwew0gA95f/?taken-by=larkinplarkin

    (the blue/navy highlights really aren’t reading well in that “after” picture, but I assure you they are there!) None of my work was photogenic (teaching, interviewing potential Principal candidates–yes, our principal quit right before spring break, effective immediately–and grading papers).

    I also got Birthday Breakfast from son & husband, and steak/flowers/cupcakes/fancy cheese for Birthday Dinner. Yum!

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