Sunday, May 31, 2020

Day 74 - Scrappy Sunday

What do you get when you clean out your scrap fabric drawer and run the sewing machine all day? 12 different colors of scrappy blocks waiting for a project. A non-quilt project.
Next up comes the white fabric strips. Or maybe muslin strips. It's still a work in progress so I haven't quite decided yet.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Day 73 - The Early Bird

Not only does the early bird get the worm, it gets kitties fed and a 6 AM sunrise picture taken through the kitchen window.

Friday, May 29, 2020

Day 72 - Foster Kitten Friday

Welcome to another week of Foster Friday. This day is always the best of the week because I get to show off my little foster babies. (The kitten kind, of course.) 

Schools may be closed all around the world, but Kitty School is open at my house. Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme have been learning lots of great lessons as they move from three week old kitties to four week old kitties.
Please sit down, children.
Boys and girls, what did you learn in school today this week?

*Bottles are good. You get yummy food in your tummy and lots of one-on-one time with Foster Mama. She gives you plenty of loving and even helps clean your face. 
Getting tired.
*Recess is fun! Foster Mama lets us have supervised play on her couch.
*Couches are a great place to climb.
*Eating off a saucer is...well...interesting. We like stepping in it and licking it off our paws the best.
*We like eating food from a spoon, too. Yeah, it's messy but oh-so-good.
*We're getting to be big kids because Foster Mama is teaching us to eat out of a bowl.
*We found out bowls are messy, too.
*But we are learning to clean ourselves! Did you know only a tongue and paw are needed?
*Toys are fun. We'll get more toy lessons next week.
*Scratching posts are also fun. I still need lessons on this one, too.
*We learned the louder we talk, the faster Foster Mama listens.
*Naps are great when you're snuggled with ones you love.
Yep, a great week for us all. See you back next week for another Foster Friday!

Want to help contribute to the work I do with foster kittens? I have an Amazon wish list right here. These are the things I use again and again, year after year. With daily laundry and frequent cleaning, items have to be replaced often. I’d love anything you’d be willing to send my way!

If you need even more cuteness, along with reasons why you should be a foster parent, check out the video I made a couple years back.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Day 71 - Find the Difference

I grew up with Highlights magazine for kids. There were several regular features each month, with one of them being Find the Difference.  It had two pictures and you had to find what was different between the two. Today’s Deb's Pic a Day picture is my own Find the Difference. It came about because of the Two is Too Many day we had a couple weeks back.

Can you see it? (You can ignore the dirty stove and crooked towel.) It was hard work getting it installed all by myself (go me!) but I think it’ll be worth it. I know it’ll be so, so, so much quieter than the last one we had. 

Things will be even more improved with another Find the Difference day coming up soon so stay tuned...

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Day 70 - More Than Sunshine on my Shoulder

As I was enjoying the warm sunshine in my backyard lounger while the kitties were sleeping, I had a visitor. With my swimsuit straps down, Little Miss (or Mr.?) Ladybug paid me a visit. Landed on my shoulder and set for a spell.
No tan lines on either one of us. 

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

How to Sew Quick and Easy Reusable Paper Towels - Tutorial Tuesday

If you find yourself cleaning your home more than usual these days, I have a project to help cut down on the number of paper towels you're using. These reusable towels are not only workhorses but are decorative as well.

For this project you will need:
Disclosure: Deb's Days is a participant in affiliate advertising programs designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to affiliated sites. This means that, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase. Your purchase helps support my work in bringing you new sewing and crafting content.

You can find the step by step how to tutorial for the reusable fabric paper towels right here:

Monday, May 25, 2020

Day 68 - Bottle Washing Sunrise

My four bottle baby kittens slept through the night last night. It was the first night I didn't have to do a 2 a.m. feeding. Woo hoo! Although without their nighttime feeding it meant they were hungry at 5 in the morning instead. It takes a while to get four of them fed and cleaned up. Blankets rearranged. Litter box cleaned. And babies put back to bed.

And bottles to wash. 

Little tiny bottles with an itty bitty bottle brush. After the kitties were back asleep (lucky them) I was washing those bottles at the sink. That's when I looked up and got the beginnings of a sunrise.
It's been a while since I've been up this early in the morning but it's definitely an improvement from having to be up in the middle of the night.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Day 67 - Memories of Prime Rib

I do love me some prime rib. I don’t eat it all that much anymore and haven’t even mentioned it on the blog for years. In looking back, I did write about it (and take a picture of it) almost exactly seven years ago. It was May 27, 2013, and of course we were on a cruise ship. It was the night our daughter got engaged. (You can read about the night's dinner here.)

But now I’m talking about tonight’s dinner. While we didn’t have prime rib, we did have prime rib. See it here?
Looks like a potato chip, doesn’t it? Well, it is. A prime rib and horseradish chip. And they are amazing!
Thank you, WinCo, for making these chips at the low price of $1.58 a bag. All the flavor at a teeny tiny fraction of the cost of real prime rib.

I don’t like potato chips but I think I do now!

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Day 66 - A Harry Potter Sewing Saturday

I remember the day very clearly. It was our umpteenth state of the 43 we hit that summer. The summer of the Idaho to Maine and back tent camping road trip. It was July 21, 2007 and we were in Mitchell, South Dakota to see the Corn Palace. But we had to take care of something at the store first.

At 19 years old, kiddo had been a Harry Potter fan half her life already. Road trip or no road trip, she was going to get her hands on the series’ final book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on its release date. We found it at the grocery store and headed back to the hotel with it, where Little Missy read all afternoon and stayed up the entire night reading the whole book.

Now that's she's married to a Harry Potter fan, the interested definitely hasn't waned. When we all went on a Caribbean cruise we stayed extra days in Florida not so they could go to Disney World but so they could go to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando. (I didn't even know such a thing existed.)

So when she asked for another face mask to wear at work - a Harry Potter one - I wasn't surprised.
She picked out the specific fabric.
And asked I make something for her husband, too.
And something for their dog, Baloo.
And don't forget something for their cat, Petri.

On this Saturday, Harry Potter sewing was my task of the day.
Mask? Check. (Finished it earlier this week.)
Bandana for her hubby when he's mowing lawn? Check.
Scarf for Baloo? Check.
Pillow for Petri? Check.
Now if she can just explain to me what the heck all the words on the fabric mean. I don't even know how to pronounce them!

Friday, May 22, 2020

Day 65 - Foster Kitten Friday

I am so excited for the return of Foster Friday. With the shelter being closed because of the pandemic I was certain I wouldn't get the chance to do any fostering this year. While having multiple cruises cancelled made me sad, having my foster season cancelled broke my heart.

But no more. We've got kitties!

Since they are baby babies - all weighing under a pound each - I got to pick their names. Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme. Sound familiar? Like Simon and Garfunkel's Scarborough Fair! It's taken them a couple days to settle in but they are doing great. As trying to corral four of them is a little hard, right now they're spending most of their time in their pop up pen. (It's like a playpen but for animals. It's this one here on Amazon.)

At first they just snuggled up in their little bed but then they started wanting to escape.
Potential prison escapees.
Alert the warden. We have Sage over the wall.
They took to the litter box well and are liking their gruel. Gruel is how we transition them from formula to real cat food. It's a canned cat food/jar baby food/kitten formula mixture put into a bottle. It's messy but it fills their bellies and helps them grow big and strong.
Thyme went after it so much he twisted off the lid
and dumped it all over me.
Parsley thinks it's pretty darn yummy.
I attempted to try and get them all into the same picture. It didn't work so well. 
Rosemary says hello.
What, one kitty is missing? Oh yeah, he stepped on my phone with my camera open as I was trying to get them lined up on the couch.
Who just took 18 pictures? Someone with a gray belly!
Want to help contribute to the work I do with foster kittens? I have an Amazon wish list right here. These are the things I use again and again, year after year. With daily laundry and frequent cleaning, items have to be replaced often. I’d love anything you’d be willing to send my way!

As hard as I tried to put them in order (Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme) I had to give up. Herding cats is like, well, herding cats.
Left to right: Sage, Rosemary, Parsley, Thyme.
 A very Happy Foster Friday!

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Day 64 - Being Aware

It was six months ago that we circumnavigated the globe by air, sea, and land.

But now our world has gotten so much smaller. It looks like it’ll be oh-so-tiny for us for a while so when we do get out (like with today's dr. appointment for Ed) I try very hard to be aware of my surroundings. Of new things. Of old things I’ve never seen before. 

If not for the awareness I would have missed these beautiful red hot pokers standing tall and proud just down the street from us. I'm sure they’ve been there in years past but I wasn’t aware enough to notice.
You can ignore the dirt spots on my car window.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Day 63 - Frankenstein Mask Making

Today I felt like Frankenstein working in his lab. (Except I was working with fabric and creating new face masks and not a monster.)

As my daughter is back to work full time she’s finding wearing a mask eight hours a day bothersome for her ears. While I planned on making some ear savers for her, I decided on a new design instead. Why? Well, Ed needed a back up mask, too. Since he’s the one-handed man, I needed to do something similar to what I made him last time. But the ear parts on the last mask were bothering him. And then I had one mask I had made myself with old elastic that wasn’t fitting right. Then I had an inquiry about a mask for one-handed folks so I figured I might as well roll all of those things into one.

Skip the ear savers I made.
Make a pleated mask like this one I made.
But add a nose wire like this one I made.
With fabric measurements like I used on this one.
Not with the ear loops I made here.
Do one with the Harry Potter fabric my daughter requested and one with the fabric my hubby requested and several more fabrics for someone else.
With lots of elastic.
And a camera rolling for one of them so I can possibly use it for a Tutorial Tuesday. 
While working around the schedule of four little bottle baby kitties who need their foster mama.
Just call me the mad scientist.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

How to Make a Clear Vinyl Bag - Tutorial Tuesday

If you're looking for a decorative bag to hold all those items you need to take with you when you leave the house nowadays - mask, hand sanitizer, wipes, and spray - today's Tutorial Tuesday project is for you.
Homemade Clear Vinyl Pouch Bag Sewing Project

For this project you will need:
Disclosure: Deb's Days is a participant in affiliate advertising programs designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to affiliated sites. This means that, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase. Your purchase helps support my work in bringing you new sewing and crafting content.

You can find the step-by-step how to directions for making this homemade clear vinyl bag sewing project right here:
Looking for mask patterns? I've got ya covered right here!

Monday, May 18, 2020

Day 61 - Almost Like Christmas

I would cruise 365 days a year if I could. But there are two things holding me back:
  1. Our daughter. She lives in the next town over and one of my favorite things in the world is hanging out with her.
  2. Foster Cats. After we had to put our kitty down several years back I started taking in foster kitties. Whenever we’re home, I get baby kittens who aren't yet old enough to adopt and help them get big and strong and ready for adoption. 
As we all know there is now a third reason I’m not always cruising. The dang pandemic has shut down the cruise lines. It’s also shut down hanging with my daughter and shut down the local feline shelter I work with.

But today one of those things changed. Yes Virginia there is a Santa Claus and yes Deb, kitties still need temporary mamas. While the Simply Cats shelter is closed to the public, they did have something for me. Well, somethings - as in more than one.

Here's a peek at just one of the little bottle babies I'm transitioning from formula to gruel. Messy, messy. But oh so cute.
All is right with the world when you have this
little one staring up at you on a rainy Monday.
Want to help contribute to the work I do with foster kittens? I have an Amazon wish list right here. These are the things I use again and again, year after year. With daily laundry and frequent cleaning, items have to be replaced often. I’d love anything you’d be willing to send my way!

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Day 60 - Definitely Not Dew Kissed

As I was picking kale in the garden I got a handful of squishy wetness. Could the leaves have been kissed by the morning dew? Nope. Maybe the day's rain had collected in the leaves? Nope.

Nothing but disgusting ickiness. Gross, nasty aphids.
Where are my ladybugs when I need them?

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Day 59 - Two is Too Many

I typically skip breakfast. Occasionally I'll have some Greek yogurt when I get up but for the most part I usually head into the sewing room first thing in the morning. I'll work a while and then come break time eat the yogurt. But today when I woke up I was feeling like I wanted a breakfast burrito. We had the spicy Mexican chorizo. We had the eggs. We had tortillas and cheese.

We also had a husband who decided he was making himself bacon and eggs at the exact same moment a wife was cooking her breakfast at the stove.

At the old stove with not all burners working properly.
Under an old oven hood with a fan that makes a horrendous racket.
On what used to be nonstick pans. He Who Shall Not Be Named long ago scratched the heck out of them, turning them into stick pans.

Under normal conditions having two people cooking separate breakfasts at the same time in front of the stove would be difficult. Add in weeks of living under stay at home orders? Having those two people doing it with the barely working burners, a noisy fan, and crappy pans? Yeah, not so good. I think I see some new purchases in my near future to make kitchen life more manageable. (Probably should keep the hubby, though.)

But despite the morning hiccups, the breakfast burrito was pretty darn good.
Yeah, that's a Halloween plate. Don't judge.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Day 58 - Don't Be a Duck

I had to run out today to pick up a prescription. Thankfully Rite Aid now allows you to prepay for them online so the drive up pick up was a quick and painless transaction. But as usual, between the time I left my house and the time I returned, I witnessed behaviors of people indicative of us not all being in this together. Yeah, it's every man for himself out there.

So when I saw a bumper sticker speaking to me when I was sitting at the stoplight I had to take a picture. It's the round one on the left - the one that definitely doesn't say Don't be a duck. But it does say Don't be a d*ck. (Update: I found the sticker on Amazon here. It actually is quite cutely decorated.)
Dang I wish my phone took better pictures!
On a happier note...actually maybe more of a sadder note...Shutterfly occasionally sends emails reminding me of my memories from years ago. Here was today's emailed memory from six years ago, sailing under the Golden Gate Bridge on a cruise ship.
Someday again, I hope. Just not any time soon.

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Day 57 - The Quilt Continues

I thought the hardest part of the “Timeless” quilt (AKA the Procrastination Quilt AKA the Fabric Headache Quilt) was behind me.

Over the last month I have:
Picked out all the fabrics.
Traced all the pattern pieces.
Ironed yards and yards and yards of fusible web onto the fabrics.
Cut out each individual fabric piece.
Ironed all the fabric pieces into their proper places.

It has been a huge undertaking and a very time consuming project. One requiring the utmost patience and persistence on my part. But now comes an even harder part - putting it together with a backing and some batting. Oh yeah, then there is the quilting that needs to be done.

Too bad I can’t just leave it as it is right now.  While not yet a true quilt it almost looks like one, doesn’t it?

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Day 56 - Inconsistencies Will Be the Downfall

It was last week when I wanted to go back into hiding after one day's experience. I had been in the parking lot when Ed was in the medical clinic and watched an extraordinary number of people go in and out the doors with no face coverings and no observance of social distancing. That was followed up by a visit to the home improvement store to pick up some weed spray where, while waiting in line, I again watched and again saw numerous people ignoring social distancing recommendations. And very few masks. It was that day I was on the verge of wanting to stick my foot out as people walked by. I figured if someone was close enough to me to trip over my foot then they were too darn close and they deserved to fall. I came home never wanting to go into public again.

But then we did. We've been doing grocery pick-up since March but sometimes you want to be the one to pick out your own fruits and vegetables and not leave it to someone who doesn't care much about what your celery looks like. Having not been inside a grocery store since our weird visit day there back in March, it was time. So we headed to our local Winco grocery store this week and were pleasantly surprised. Most people with masks and plenty of social distancing. And even a group of young people without masks were being very considerate and moving their cart (and bodies) when around the rest of us older folks. Made me think maybe things will be okay.

Then came the doctor's appointment. They called us ahead of time, letting us know they aren't having patients wait inside the waiting room. Just call us when you arrive and we'll come and get you from your car when there is a room ready. Sounded like a great idea to us.

Until the receptionist came out to the car with the standard paperwork to fill out. On their clipboard with their pen. Did she drop off the paperwork and leave? Nope. She leaned into the car, talking us through it. With no mask on. Seriously, we are going to all this trouble and then someone working in a doctor's office isn't considerate enough to wear a mask when she's talking to us less than a foot from our faces? Grrr.

It's disheartening to see the inconsistencies happening around us. Yep, time to go back into hiding. With no more doctor appointments until next week, we'll stay right where we are. With us both being high risk we just can't, well, risk it with all these people and their behaviors.

The only good thing to come out of the appointment (other than Ed being good to go for two more years!) was the roses out in front of the car while I waited for him. I even captured the reflection in the car hood.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Make a Scrap Fabric Matching Game for Kids - Tutorial Tuesday

It's Tutorial Tuesday and today I have a project to keep your kids busy during this no-school pandemic times. It's an easy sew project using some of your fabric scraps.
Easy Homemade Fabric Matching Game for Children from Fabric Scraps

For this project you will need:
Disclosure: Deb's Days is a participant in affiliate advertising programs designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to affiliated sites. This means that, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase. Your purchase helps support my work in bringing you sewing and crafting content.

You can find the step-by-step how to directions for this easy homemade scrap fabric matching game sewing project right here:

Monday, May 11, 2020

Day 54 - Mask Makin' Mama

Give this mama 30 minutes and she can pop out five face masks for her daughter who started back to work today.
For those interested in knowing which pattern I used, I went with my No Pleat Face Mask and added a nose wire like I did in the Pleated Face Mask with Nose Wire video.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Day 53 - On This Day

So today when no kids can hang out with their moms unless they are already quarantined together, I might as well pretend I’m on a cruise ship. Alcoholic drink in hand and flip flops off.

Happy Mother's Day to us all.

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Day 52 - Saturday Smorgasbord

Today was a smorgasbord of a day. Not food wise, but to-do list wise. I jumped from one random task to another.
In the order of completion, today I:
  • Unpacked the suitcase. When we came home from our February cruises we washed our clothes and proceeded to repack some of them. We even replenished our toiletry kit. We thought we would be heading right back out onto ships for several more weeks of warm weather cruises. That clearly didn't happen, and for some reason I just haven't been able to bring myself to unpack everything again. As we now have warm weather here some of the things in the suitcase were needed, and since there is no travel in the near future for us, it was time to empty it completely. Sad.
  • Cleared my sewing workspace of the fabric headache quilt. I've made some great progress on it, but I need to set it aside for a few days before I finish all the iron-on applique. Ugh.
  • Pulled multiple fabrics out of my baskets and texted photos back and forth to kiddo. Her store reopens on Monday and she needed some more face masks. She's been using the no-pleat one I made and likes it so much she wants more of the same style instead of using the store-provided masks. We now have five fabric choices, approved by her.
  • Cut up the box from my new lounge chair and put it into the recycling bin. The box was huge and the cardboard sturdy. It was a tough job.
  • Soaked up a generous amount of Vitamin D in said lounger.
  • Did a load of laundry and hung it on the clothesline outside.
  • Shaved both our heads again. Just like I did a couple weeks back, we went behind the shed and I used the clippers to cut our hair super short. No more waiting three months between haircuts in this house anymore.
  • Showered to remove loose hair.
  • Did another load of laundry to wash the hair out of the clothes and hung them on the clothesline, too.
  • Had another pizza picnic, this time from Domino's. And this time Ed even let us use the card table instead of having to share our tiny picnic ant TV tray.
  • Worked on figuring out some kind of flower decoration to go on the kitty cat wreath I made our daughter earlier this year. I'm not quite sure what I'm doing with the flowers but I'm kind of liking the direction I'm heading with my practice pieces. 
A random but productive Saturday.

Friday, May 8, 2020

Day 51 - Chair Hog

If you’re a cruiser, you most likely know what a chair hog is.  For those who don’t, a chair hog is one of those people on a ship who scope out a lounge chair in the morning. Not only do they find the best one, they proceed to put things on the chair to hold it until later in the day. Sometimes they even pick out three or even five chairs to hold. You’ll see a flip flop going onto one chair and the matching flip flop onto another chair. A beach bag will go onto another lounge chair, a book on another, and a hat on another. And then the person disappears for hours and hours. I spend a lot of time at the pool when we’re on a ship so I get first-hand views of their work. I’m definitely not a fan of chair hogs.

But I am going to become a chair hog. At home, that is. With my new lounge chair in my backyard, I will be leaving my stuff and coming and going as I please. Now if I could just train someone to come around to take my drink order...

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Day 50 - A New Evening Treat

We’ve survived the longest month ever, March. We’ve survived the second longest month ever, April. Now we’re onto May. Woo hoo! Warmer weather, flowers and trees a bloomin', birds chirping, and ice cream cones at night.

Ice cream cones? Yup. If you remember, in April I spiced things up by making these mystery treat bags for us to share every evening. Well, now we’re doing ice cream evenings.

Pre-pandemic if we wanted an ice cream cone we’d drive a couple blocks down to Burger King for their dollar vanilla cones. Once the stay at home orders began our ice cream cone trips ended. Since we never ever keep ice cream in our freezer we figured we’d just have to give it up.

Not so fast.

For the first time ever we have three different ice creams in our freezer and ice cream cones in our cabinet. (Thank you grocery pick up!) Instead of choosing a random treat bag during those between dinner and bedtime munchies cravings we will have an ice cream cone.

A fun way to spice up our evenings. (Yeah, we're kinda boring people.)

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Day 49 - A Tree Transformation

As today was a stormy day and I had plenty of catching up to do on the fabric headache quilt, I wasn't much interested in going outside to take a picture of a tree. But you-know-who loves his tree and loves that the color isn't quite yet green and wanted a picture of it. So today's picture, taken through my sewing room window, is for my husband the tree man.

At least it looks better than it did 41 days ago.