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October 2004

October 31st, 2004 — 5:38pm

October 2004

Oct 31 — Yesterday I started work on a new dress using my Romantic Dress Pattern. I made a toile out of muslin, which fits quite well. I had to pinch in some extra at the sides, and enlarge the armholes a bit, but other than that it’s fine. So today I cut out the bodice and sleeves from the lovely olive-green plaid cotton I got for cheap ($1.50/yard!!) at the big sale at JoAnne’s. Sewed most of the bodice together. I’m piping the back and sleeve seams and the neckline. I’ve never done any piping before but it’s looking really good so far!

Oct 30 — Played a lot of Harvest Moon today. What a great game!!

Oct 29 — Today I gave up on “Olivia Joules and the Overactive Imagination”. Great title, boring as all-get-out. Henry and I played “Intimate Settlers”, a two-man variation of Settlers of Catan. Fun!

Oct 28 — Received the last disk of “The Way We Live Today” and watched the whole thing on my laptop in Henry’s room. That was a pretty good series. It was very well-made, good acting, costuming, and all. My only complaint is that the music was annoying and heavy-handed. And Trollope is… well, Trollope :) You just can’t expect as good a story as you would from, say, Jane Austen or Elizabeth Gaskell.

Oct 27 — Haven’t been feeling all that well. They put me on too much replacement thyroid hormone and I went slightly hyper again — enough to make me feel crummy all the time. Sigh. Now I’m on a lower dose and expect to feel better again someday.

Here’s a photo of my new Molly Apron (so called because I copied the green plaid apron that Molly Gibson wears in the BBC production of Wives and Daughters).

Oct 26 — Henry took photos of my new red linen dress and my brown Molly Apron so I’ll post those soon! Also we did the grocery shopping today, and I made pumpkin muffins and pumpkin soup for dinner, yummy yum yum! Dan was in San Jose all day. It’s supposed to rain tonight again, yay.

Oct 23 — We went to the Escondido mall. Horror. I hate malls, and I hate that one especially! But Dan bought me some hazelnut godiva chocolates so that made it somewhat more bearable :) Watched “Connie and Carla” tonight which was a disappointment. Don’t bother. If you want to see Nia Vardalos, just watch Big Fat Greek Wedding again.

Oct 21 — Finished my red linen dress! It’s so lovely. Here’s a photo that Henry took. There is brown grosgrain ribbon around the hemline, too. I adore this dress. Linen is great! It frays easily, so I zigzagged around every single piece before I started sewing, but other than that it was a breeze to work with.

Oct 20 — I bought “Jump Start Typing” for Henry, cheap from amazon, and, now that we’ve figured out how to make it easy enough for a beginner, he likes it a lot! I made a copy for myself to use on my computer, too :) I type very fast but have to look at my fingers. I think if I work with the Jump Start program for a while, I’ll be able to touch-type! I tried to teach myself on a typewriter (remember those?) when I was a kid but it was sooooo boring. The Jump Start software is pretty fun :) Worked on my red linen dress today, while Henry watched the new Bionicle movie. I got the lining sewn in over the waist seam, and hemmed the sleeves and trimmed them with ribbon, and measured and pinned up the hem.

Oct 19 — The first disk of the first season of “All Creatures Great and SMall” arrived yesterday, so Henry and I watched the first two episodes today, after we did all the shopping and everything. Ahhh I love that show. So soothing, so British. Tabatha is visiting and it’s so nice to have her here!

Oct 17 — Here’s a photo of my 1910 tea gown, which I made recently using the pattern from

Dan took the photo last weekend at Guajome. I love this dress! The pattern is really intended to make a more fancy long gown, using layers of chiffon or similar lightweight/sheer fabric for several overskirts of varying lengths. But I wanted an every-day dress so I used 100% cotton seersucker, cut it to a sensible mid-calf length, and skipped the overskirts and sash. And I cut the bodice inset on the bias — I love bias-cut plaid. I think it turned out beautifully!

Oct 16 — Took myself to the library this morning and got several good-looking books and a few new audiobooks, including a couple of Lemony Snickets and a Jeeves and Wooster for Henry :) This afternoon Dan took me to Yardage Town and I spent some of the birthday money that Mom gave me on 3 1/4 yards of linen for a new 1910 dress. It’s a sort of rusty/tomato red. Maybe light cranberry. Also got some brownish ribbon to decorate the bodice inset, a zipper, and hem facing so I’m all set to make a new dress. I washed and dried my fabric already so I can start sewing tomorrow!

Oct 15 — H and I finished Wives and Daughters and then watched the first two Jeeves and Wooster episodes on the lates dvd from Greencine. I’m still kind of tired today, ugh, so it was nice to not do much. I’ve got another big block of Dan’s quilt done — that’s the good thing about sitting around watching movies.

Oct 14 — Henry’s still got a bit of a cough and I’m not completely well either, so we stayed home from Park Day and Karate, and watched Wives and Daughters together :) I put it on while I was working on Dan’s quilt, and Henry got really interested, so we watched the first three episodes before I had to go teach a student.

Dan and I went to bed early and watched three episodes of Venture Brothers on his laptop — the space station one, the one where Brock meets the Bionic Man and Bigfoot, and the one where Dr. Orpheus shows up and Brock gets stuck in the Joy Box. Fuuny stuff!

Oct 12 — Finally feeling more like myself! We did have a good weekend — Henry stayed with us and on Sunday we all went to Guajome park for a few hours. I modeled my new blue dress and Dan took lost of photos, and then we got the tripod out of the car and got some family photos! It was a lovely day — warm but not hot, with pleasant breezes and autumn smells.

This morning I had to see the endocrinologist and get a whole bunch of bloodwork done again. Luckily Wilson, my favorite lab guy, was working today. It barely hurts at all when he draws blood. Then we did all the grocery shopping and put the food away and now I’m catching up on my email and blogging, heh.

We’ve discovered a fine new TV show. It’s called “The Venture Brothers” and it plays on Adult Swim, the late-night block of shows on cartoon network/cartoon planet/something like that. It is _not_ a cartoon for kids! It contains some very adult content, so be warned. It is also hysterically, screamingly, rewind-and-watch-that-bit-again funny. Dr. Venture is a self-centered, mad-scientist type. His two sons, Hank and Dean, are average 1950s-style teens. Dr. Venture’s Arch Nemesis, The Monarch, is extremely insecure. The Monarch’s girlfriend, Dr. Girlfriend, has a rather husky voice. :) Dr. Venture’s secret-agent-type-bodyguard, Brock Samson, is everything you’d want in a bodyguard, and is voiced by Patrick Warburton (“Putty” from Seinfeld), who is perfect. We’ve seen three episodes so far, each funnier than the last. The most recent episode, “Tag Sale — You’re It” was so good we saved it in the TiVo so we can watch it a few more times. :)

Oct 07 — Still sick. Ugh. Yesterday we went to Julian for a homeschool field trip to an apple orchard, which was wonderful. Long drive, very exhausting. I’ll describe it in more detail when I feel better.

Oct 05 — Grocery shopping this morning, them put everything away, then cleaned all the counters very well and got rid of some more old junk. Then laundry and lunch and more housework, and now I’m going to hem the sleeves and hem of my blue dress!

Oct 04 — Last night I came down with a sore throat, ugh. It hurt a lot all night, but by morning it was just a little bit tender and I felt run-down. So I slept late, but Henry and Dan got up early and watched SpaceShipOne win the prize! After I got up, Henry helped me with the housework — we did five minutes in each room, including mopping and vacuuming, and now the house is nice. Then I mostly rested and played Harvest Moon until evening when i had a student. Also we stopped by the fabric store so I could get a zipper for my dress, and this evening I installed it. Kirsten and Marcos came over for some computer help tonight but Dan had a work emergency and had to go back down there and didn’t get home til 11!

Oct 03 — Happy birthday Kathy! Hope you have a wonderful day :)

This morning I started my 1910 dress. I ran out of tracing paper, so I taped the pattern to the sliding glass door and then taped newspaper over it, so I could trace off my size. I went for a size 14. Then I made a muslin and fit it, and, surprise, it fit almost perfectly right away! I had to use 3/8″ seam allowances and pull one half of the back a little snugger at the neckline. Then I made the bodice (cutting the center panel on the bias). Then I cut the skirt panels, seamed them, gathered them, and attached them to the bodice. By the end of the day I had an almost-complete dress! Amazing. It’s a lovely pattern and goes together so easily! After all the trouble I had with my brown dress, it was such fun to go from start to almost-finished in one day! All I need to do is hem it, hem the sleeves, add the zipper, and hand-stitch the lining into place over the waist gathers.

In the afternoon I put on my brown dress and we went outside so Dan could take pictures! Here’s a nice one :) He took several really good ones and is in the middle of photoshopping them to make the colors just right. I’m not going to add it to my crafts page until all the photos are done. As you can see, I had to add a seam up the front of the skirt because my original version had a placket in front, but it looked bad. So I got rid of it with a seam :) The neckline and hem are edged with bias tape. The sleeves and waistband are unbleached muslin. I ended up lowering the waist by about 2″, and making a size 16 ( I think, whatever I made for Chloe) with some width taken out in front and darts at the back neckline. The darts let me have room in the back without letting the neckline gape. Also had to enlarge the armholes in the lower front. It was a ton of work, but now that it’s done I’m very pleased! Oh, the lovely brown cotton was a gift last year from Dan’s mom!

Oct 02 — Got up early, finished Henry’s felt Pikachu (He needed a tail), and drove H down to SD. On the way back, we went to the Sprint store so Dan could pick up his replacement Treo 600, then after we got home I sewed and sewed and sewed. I _finished_ my brown dress! I had to make a back skirt placket, attach the skirt to the waistband (forming pleats in back), sew the waistband lining in, hem the sleeves, add the bias tape trimming to the neckline, and attach the hook-and-eye up the back. Oh I hate sewing on hook-and-eyes, ugh. But now it’s done, yay!!!!! It’s so lovely and fits perfectly. Dan will take pictures tomorrow, I hope.

Tonight we watched “The Madness of King George” which was really good!

Oct 01 — Henry really likes his new Pokemon LeafGreen game — he played for hours today while I was sewing. Nice quiet morning. We didn’t have to go anywhere until it was time for his piano lesson and karate. I have a new gameboy game too — “Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town” which is extremely fun! I played for an hour and a half during karate :)

When I got home I found that my order from Lacis had arrived! I ordered some 1/4″ steel corset stays from them last week. They shipped quickly and provided me with tracking information that let me see the progess of my order from office to warehouse to packing and shipping — very convenient! Tonight I sewed the stays into my corset (I just used bias tape to make boning channels, quick and easy but they’ll wear out soon, I suspect) and I am so happy with it! It fits well and gives the proper shaping for my old-fashioned dresses, and it is far more comfortable than a modern bra, now that the bones are in it. Isn’t that surprising?

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