Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Non-Sewing Sewing Day

I finally got over to my friend's house to help her work on making some new dresses for herself, based on a dress that she loves, but which has seen better days. Before and after having a great ladies-only lunch with another friend, the old dress was ripped apart, fabric for three dresses was purchased, paper pattern pieces with notations were created, detailed sewing instructions were written out, and the Presbytera got a quick lesson on how to make a French seam. Not much actual sewing done but a lot of progress towards what will (hopefully!) be some lovely dresses. I better work, work, work on my own sewing! Can't let my alter ego get ahead of me. I'll just assign all the housework to my daughters. :)

And Kate, we saw this poster at lunch and it made the three of us think of you, our NZ girlfriend. :) I took the picture, Presbytera held the lamp above the table back so I could get a clear shot.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Guilt or Inspiration?

Via Joanne Jacobs, a story about a father who wrote a series of math textbooks for his sons to help them when they were struggling in math. I'm vacillating between feeling guilty, because as a homeschooling mom I haven't come up with much original material on my own to help my kids learn other than some flash cards for German vocabulary. Part of me thinks that it's pretty neat and that I could come up with something similar for my own daughters, if the need was there and it was a field I had a solid background in. This father was an automotive engineer, so I presume he has a pretty good math background. I'd probably do better with some sort of history or perhaps German text. In any case, I think it's inspirational for the idea that you, as the parent, know your own kids enough to really help them when they have problems.

Friday, July 27, 2007


I don't know what's been going on with me lately. I haven't felt myself the last couple of days. I've been sleeping too much, and only doing a minimum around the house. I need something to get me out of my doldrums, but I'm not sure what...

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Late Night Thoughts

Posterboard: $0.39
Pair of jeans possibly ruined when black marker cap came off in my pocket, and now there's a huge marker stain on them: $35.00
Casey Blake's signature: Priceless. :)

The good news: CC Sabathia was back in form, giving up only one run in tonight's game against the Red Sox.

The bad news: The Indians didn't score *any* runs, so we lost the game.

Good or bad news, depending on your view: as of tonight, Cliff Lee was still with the Tribe.

Just for Scottius Maximus: view of the right field seats, as seen from the left field.

Our seats were in the little triangle section furthest to the left, right above the Pronkville sign. Unfortunately, Pronk did not hit any to Pronkville tonight.

The view from our seats.

I was sad that Jason Michaels bugged out first after the game, and didn't sign my "I Like J-Mike" sign. At least Casey Blake signed it, and he signed my daughters' posters too. He was the only one who really hung out and signed stuff tonight. Cliff Lee signed for a minute or so, but then he was there with his little kids. Lots of players were. It was sweet to see Victor Martinez come out carrying a baby carseat in one hand, and holding his other child's hand with the other. I believe I saw Kelly Shoppach with a baby on his shoulder, too.

Cleveland rocks!

Monday, July 23, 2007


I hate to make sweeping "I'm picking up my toys and going home" statements, but I don't think I'll be very interested in watching Cleveland Browns football this year, after this. I don't know anything beyond what's in this article, but Quinn has not even signed with the Browns yet, undoubtedly because he's holding out for an enormous contract. For someone who expects multiple millions, asking $75 or more for a signature just seems like nothing more than pure, unadulterated greed. What kind of "costs" were associated with this event besides the money forked out to Quinn in return for an "exclusive contract" for his signature? I haven't been very into the football scene in years, and maybe this is the norm, but I think it's wrong, especially so for someone who has not even spent a minute officially in a Browns uniform. If this is the standard in the National Felon's League, they can make their millions without my contribution.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

A Day at the Faire

As I mentioned yesterday, today was the day we went to the Great Lakes Medieval Faire. Ah, the Medieval Age, that halcyon time of plastic elf ears, leather corsets, lots of cleavage and put-on accents. Truly, we hath a lovely time. Here are some highlights of our day.

We let our children have weapons. What were we thinking? They aim at the target, with their uncle doing the same.

We got to see some battles on horseback, hand-to-hand as well as jousting.

What's a fair without rides? For a medieval faire, it's only appropriate to have people-powered rides. Here's one I rode with my daughters called the Crow's Nest. A cheerful pirate pushed our seating compartment around just enough so the ropes twisted around the center pole. After a couple times of back and forth to really get the ropes twisted well, we got some good centripetal force going and got a little bit diiiizzzzzy.

Here's a medieval carousel, with a turnstile in the center for somebody to turn, to propel the carousel. I've been on that style of ride before too, actually pretty fun.

Another activity offered for the children was pony rides. The Scientist is finding out all about her pony, while Wildchild smiles graciously at her subjects. Note her lovely tiara. I didn't get a good shot of the Scientist's new necklace/tiara, but she's wearing it as a necklace in her picture.

If you wanted to get around the fairgrounds, you could grab a medieval taxicab ride.

The theme for this weekend was A Celtic Celebration. We missed the Highland Games in the morning, but there was lots of good Celtic music all day, and a lot of kilts to be seen.

Isn't this a big Irish Wolfhound?

I bought two things for myself, a cast stone shelf to hang on the wall, and a wall hanging with a cathedral feel. I can't wait to get them hung up.

It was a super day, spent with family.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Our Sweet Daughter?

After church tomorrow, we're meeting up with my sister-in-law and her husband, and attending the Great Lakes Medieval Faire. I was reminded of when we went a few years ago, and my daughters were each allowed to pick one item to buy from among the vendors. The Scientist was going through a musical phase, and chose a flute made out of wood. Wildchild's choice was a little more interesting. She chose this pretty ring.

Only thing is, it's a poison ring. The stone lifts up, and there's a place where poison can be placed to be secretly deposited into an unfortunate's drink. Perhaps it was just us, but it was weird buying a poison ring for our five-year-old. She liked it, though, and it was what she chose...

Also in the maybe-it's-just-me category, I used to refer to it as a Borgia ring, after the Spanish family notorious for poisoning, but nobody ever seemed to know what I was talking about. Would any of my intelligent readers understand if they heard about a "Borgia ring"?


Lookie! I got this pretty bracelet in the post today from kate5kiwis. I won it because I know what the answer to life, the universe and everything is! :)

I didn't get a chance to help my friend with her sewing. I did get a nice shirt for my daughter made. Gotta work on the skorts to go with.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Sewing Update

First of all, does anyone else have a hard time fitting everything they want to accomplish into a day? Yeah, I'm pretty sure I'm not alone here. Just needed to get that out there.

I have accomplished some sewing! I am in the process of creating a nice tablecloth and matching cloth napkins for our dining table. That part's relatively easy: cut out fabric to appropriate sizes and hem. However, as part of my quest to develop embroidery skills, I am embroidering our family initial onto said napkins. Here's what I've done so far.

It's the first thing I've ever really embroidered, besides some practice stitches. I'm not completely happy with it, but I'm forcing myself to finish it before I move on to the next napkin, which hopefully will go more smoothly.

I worked on it some tonight while at a Panera Bread restaurant with my husband and kids, and about fifty local geocachers from the NeoGeo caching group. Geocaching, for those not familiar with the term, is using multi-million dollar satellite technology to find Tupperware in the woods. :) For further info, please read here. Anyway, it was nice to have something to partially occupy my mind (that usually runs a mile a minute) while sitting chatting with a bunch of strangers (to me), although my husband knew some people there. He and our daughters attended an event a couple of years ago to celebrate another kid's 1,000 cache find! I haven't gone caching with my family much, but I should go more. They'd like it, and it's good exercise. I've just never been much of an outdoor person. Actually, I think our kids would like to go caching more in general. I think the death of our friend who was a serious geocacher made it hard for my husband to go caching for a while.

I'll show you more embroidery as I go on, and I really do need to get some clothes sewn up. I have a new sewing room and some stuff has gotten lost in the shuffle, including a pattern or two I needed... frustrating! In the meantime, I am helping a friend with *her* sewing tomorrow. Should be fun!

Pie Anyone?

Gotta hit the sewing room again today. Will post pics later! In the meantime, let's enjoy a sweet, sweet, sweet Indians win with some Leadership Pie, only this time flung by Garko's roomie Barfield.

Not my video. Lifted it from the Let's Go Tribe blog to share with you.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Grey Day

I don't know how much the weather is affecting my mood, if at all, but I'm feeling very uninterested in doing much of anything today. I did take Wildchild to her Pop Jazz class earlier today, so at least I got out of the house. And I'm glad we're getting a little bit of rain, because we needed it. I have a couple of sewing projects I need to work on; maybe I'll share the results with you later!

Monday, July 16, 2007

From The Duh Department

Just saw this headline: Violence Appears To Be Making Cleveland More Dangerous. Gee, ya think? No, I'm not happy that the homicide rate in Cleveland is up, by the way. I *am* glad Ohioans are allowed to protect themselves and their loved ones with concealed weapons.

Lutheran Carnival Goes On Vacation

Or at least, takes us to some vacations. Pastor Snyder hosts Lutheran Carnival LIV and also highlights a Lutheran Pastor from Down Under. Lots of good reading there!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Ice Cream Weekend

Turns out today was National Ice Cream Day, which was very fitting, considering the kind of weekend we had. Yesterday, my husband took the family to Mitchell's for my birthday. I had the double chocolate chunk ice cream, with really creamy chocolate chunks, in case you're wondering. Later on, Wildchild was playing with a friend and got an invitation to go to Mootown Creamery with a friend, so it was a two-ice-cream-day for her.

Today, Wildchild's friend, the soon-to-be-kindergartener, came over to play, and we had ice cream for dessert after dinner. After Wildchild and I took her friend home, we were going to head over to my friend Presbytera's to drop off some things of hers, and she called and told me they were going out for ice cream and invited us along. How could I say no?? So a big group ended up going out for ice cream. And my husband, not to be left out, took the Scientist to Mootown. Which apparently is like Cold Stone Creamery, only less expensive and bigger servings. Just so you know.

Also cool, Wildchild and I saw two bucks right around the corner from the Presbytera and Chaplain's place on the way home.

Saturday, July 14, 2007


While hanging out listening to the radio after a Tribe loss :(, I found the time to take this quiz I found via kate5kiwis. It takes a while, but it was interesting. Want to see how I did?

Shop 'Til Your Fingers Drop

Since so many of my readers are crafty, and also like to shop, I want to pass on this web site my husband found, Etsy.com. It is a place to buy and sell handmade items, of all kinds. Seems like ebay, only cheaper as far as I can tell. A *lot* of stuff there for sale. Standard disclaimer: I have no association with this company, and I don't even think I know anyone selling on there.

The New Face of News

The Let's Go Tribe blog broke the news that Indians farmhand Jensen Lewis was being called up to the majors, then added extra corroboration by way of... Jensen Lewis' Facebook page, where he wrote "got the call, SEE YOU IN THE BIG LEAGUES!!!!!!" Seeing as my last serious dating days were back in the early nineties, I also found it humorous to read in the comments how "the kids" keep up with their friends' relationship status via Facebook and My Space. Then again, I go to a church where it's not entirely unusual for a conversation to start with "Did you see on my blog that I..."

Friday, July 13, 2007

Happy Friday the 13th!

Today was a good day for me, seeing as it was my birthday. This will be the last year of my 30s! My husband, being wise in his day and generation, and knowing What a Girl Wants, got me this.

I also got this purse.

This was inside, which went with


I'm looking forward to some fun rides this summer. Of course, I also got a lovely greeting card, too. :)

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Women and Work

I was not surprised to see the results of a new study that shows most women would prefer to work part-time. Personally, I prefer to work full-time... from home! :) Teaching my daughters, doing housework, sewing, cooking, are plenty of work for me! But this study goes along with the idea offered by people like the women at the Independent Women's Forum, who also noticed this study, that any discrepancies between the pay of women and men can for the most part be attributed to the fact that women generally prefer to not push as hard on the career fast-track as men. I'm not going to offer any anecdotal evidence about others here; I'm just going to say that I have found my talents and abilities best suited to managing my home, and if I ever do work outside my home, I hope it's not more than part-time.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

School Blues

They're putting back-to-school stuff out at Target already. Amazing, huh? And I'm frazzled trying to pick out curricula for the girls. I'm confused between all the different options, and what would be best. I'm reading reviews and investigating options, and I still can't decide anything. I'll have to by the time our school year starts, I just hope I make the right decisions.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Monday Ramble

It's hilarious that Cindy Sheehan is threatening to run against Nancy Pelosi for Pelosi's House seat next year. I want a stadium seat next to Dr. Luther for this entertainment, and a large supply of Sno-Caps.

Do you think if *you* slapped a co-worker, that you'd still have a job by the end of the day? More likely to be escorted out via security in about five minutes, I should think. Via Ace.

Anyone else ever get stuck hanging around the mall when your husband strikes up an impromptu Pirates game at the game store? Just me? At least I did get a new pair of shoes...

He may be a good pitcher, but I didn't think Dan Haren a likely start for the AL in the All-Star game. I would have thought Verlander more likely. But then again, Leyland seems to be going out of his way to avoid favoritism charges. By the way, is the All-Star commercial stupid, or what? It starts out cute, but by the end when the cable cars run into the bay, it's just dumb. What's the point of that? And my husband also complains that it's poorly rendered.

A Little Scary

Would it disturb you to see a kid doing backflips into a pool about 4 feet deep, where it is clearly marked "No Diving"??? At one point the father was standing there watching the kid dive in. Poorly behaved children are bad enough; kids risking a broken neck are just hair-raising.

Saturday, July 07, 2007


I hate being short and having short arms. The cupboards above our refrigerator are useless to me because I can't reach into them, even standing on our stepstool. And I need a stepstool to make most of the kitchen cupboards functional for me as it is. This weekend rant brought to you by the letter W, as in waah.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Bear With Me Here

I know a lot of you aren't baseball fans, but I know some of you are, and in a way this post is generally relevant. In particular, it's about the Cleveland Indians and how, or why, they're not pulling the fans in, as discussed in this article. In general, though, it's about the family, the limits on the family budget, and what the family does with the budget. Now, our family, except for DH, has already been to an Indians game, for a Weather Education Day and a game. We're also all going to a game later this month; my DH's department at work is having a day out there. However, one of the reasons we're attending both of these games is that we got/are getting good prices on tickets. Yes, I love going to Indians games, and our family is blessed enough to be able to afford things like going to major league baseball games. However, there are other things that we like to spend our money on. As a roller coaster fanatic, a summer is not complete without at least one trip to Cedar Point, when possible. There's been a couple of movies DH wanted to see with the girls this summer. In other words, there's a lot of competition for our family entertainment dollar, and although I have found some of the Indians promotions interesting, it doesn't create extra money in the budget.

For you Clevelanders, one other discussion question. I've heard that the Cleveland economy is bad, that big companies and good jobs and people have been leaving the city, but I haven't seen it personally. Yeah, our family went through a hard time in 2002, but lots of people in lots of areas of the country did then. How are things doing now? I guess I love Cleveland, and I see it as a great place to live. I'll admit the tax situation for the city and Cuyahoga County could be better, though. Too bad someone likely to lower taxes doesn't have a chance in heck of being elected.

Beauty in Many Things

Does anyone else feel like this year's fireworks were the best, every year? We really did see a good fireworks show this year. As I was writing my Independence Day post, I was having a hard time coming up with something profound and meaningful to say, or even a good quote to draw on. As I was watching the fireworks with my husband and my daughters, I was thinking that even though being American may mean fighting for freedom and liberty when necessary, being American can also be just hanging out as a family, with other families around you, eating fair food and watching a really good fireworks display. The big things are worth fighting for so we can have those special, little moments.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Happy Independence Day

Today I'm thankful for the freedoms we have, and for the chance we had to celebrate the day with friends. I'm glad to call this place home.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

If I'm Not Insane Yet...

I probably will be soon after what DH brought home last night!

Monday, July 02, 2007

Seizing the Day

After too long of a time away, I finally really got into my sewing room again, and made a bathing suit top for my eldest daughter. I make their own bathing suits, two-piece but modest (they have to be approved by Daddy.) Although not as modest as these. I think those are a bit over the top, and at that point, you might as well go retro and just do a turn-of-the-century style. Folkwear makes a pattern. Come to think of it, after two pregnancies, I wouldn't mind that style for me... Anyway, it's off to the pool!

Before I go, though, just a quick goodbye to Grover. Most of us were rather fond of him during his tenure(s) here with the Tribe. I hope retirement brings him happiness, and that he's not being pushed out for any of the nefarious reasons listed in the article.