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Hello, Atlantic. September 5, 2009

Posted by jeninmaine in bebeh, Family, kidlet, photography.
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Good day today. Slept in, way in (like Michael and I having a silent contest of wills to see who will get up first while the two children entertain one another unsupervised in the next room – awesome), though the latter half of that was punctuated by various kid tending it was still nice and somewhat restful. We had a birthday party to attend for one of kidlet’s classmates so we went off to do that in the early afternoon and it went pretty well. We left around 3 pm and it was so nice outside that I proposed to Michael that we go on a little adventure – just get in the car and drive for a bit while (hopefully) Margaret got an afternoon nap rather than going home and trying in vain to get her to sleep while looking out the window at the pristine weather.

She did nap, thankfully, and we drove out to Bath where I showed kidlet Bath Iron Works. You can see a good deal of what is going on there from the road, we were able to look at a couple of ships in cross-section being worked on as well as all the cranes out over the water and a giant blue barge. He was very surprised at the size of it all, I guess one doesn’t really think about just how huge your normal everyday destroyer really is until you have to quantify its height including the dangly bit that’s below the water.

We drove over the bridge toward Woolwich, then turned down 127 toward Reid State Park. I haven’t been there since I was a kid, though we were close to there recently for Keith and Misty’s wedding in Georgetown. Beautiful drive down there. We got there around 4:30 which is perfect beach time for us, being combustible and all. The only bummer were there were A LOT of mosquitoes in any shady areas, which meant the bathhouse and the restrooms. Eugh.

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

We let the kids run around the beach and Mim decided throwing sand in the air was the best thing ever. She only ate a small amount and I pulled the stick out of my ass a little bit so it didn’t bother the hell out of me to see her getting so wet and sandy. They are at the beach, they’re supposed to be wet and sandy, I kept telling myself. Kidlet ended up getting himself drenched from the waist down. Oh well. At least I remembered their sandals. The nice thing about going to the beach is that there’s almost always a haze in the air which gets into your airway and cleans everything out – within minutes Mim’s nose was running like crazy and all of us were sneezing and sniffling, purging all the junk. It’s a nice perk along with the sand and the seaweed and stuff.

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

There was a little group of sand pipers dashing from the waves and then chasing them back out, searching the surf for food. They were really adorable and we were able to get pretty close to get a good look at them. There were also lots of tide pools to splash around in and some very cool driftwood structures people had built up on the beach. They looked like an ongoing community project, one of them was particularly large. The weather was sublime. I definitely, definitely have to bring Joy here the next time she comes to Maine. Spectacular. I tried to get some pictures of the waves splashing for her but wasn’t able to get too close with a daredevil toddler trying to swim to England.

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

I am so thankful that we live in a coastal state and that it’s easy enough to pick a road heading generally eastward and within an hour be looking at the Atlantic. I think we take it for granted a lot, so I try to prod us in that direction whenever I can. Just visiting for an hour or two always energizes me, the ocean is such a powerful thing, awe-inspiring and vast.

Not too many nice days like this left, the trees are already starting to turn so I know those days are numbered. Before we know it we’ll be ass-deep in snow again so we need to enjoy this while we can.

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

Reid State Park 09/05/2009

The times, they are a-changin’. June 13, 2009

Posted by jeninmaine in bebeh, kidlet, photography.
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Last week the traveling carnival was in town, the kind assembled by drunk guys with screwdrivers and then crammed into a tiny parking lot. I’m always fascinated by them, the portability of such a huge and elaborate setup, the way they’re able to shoehorn everything into small and/or awkwardly-shaped spaces. There was a whole village of RVs parked out behind the carnival where we would see the carnies sitting out on their steps in the evenings before the show opened, entire families of them. I wonder what those children think of their nomadic existence?

I don’t trust the big rides, never go on em. The kids’ rides are kind of a joke, too, with safety restraints like pieces of rope loosely cinched around them. We put Michael and Katy on the motorcycle ride which just went round and round for three minutes – kidlet wasn’t too pleased to have some other strange kid seated right behind him. The strange kid looked perplexed, too. He spent most of the ride trying to look too cool to be riding it. Katy seemed mildly pleased at first, and by the end she was so psyched by the whole experience!

Motorcycles

Motorcycles

Motorcycles

Motorcycles

Motorcycles

Neither of the kids were interested in the bounce house – I can’t imagine why.

Bounce house

Mim was a little out of it, suffering from a food coma after a long day playing.

Zoney Mim

Zoney Mim

Would I ever get on this? Not on your life.

1000 Nachts

Kidlet turned down the uppy-downy-spinny plane ride, which had charming machine guns mounted on the front and back for each child.

1_DSC_0085

Kidlet watching the Zipper.

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The last time I ever rode this ride was when I was eleven and had just ingested a large sausage sandwich piled high with fried peppers and onions. I spent the entire ride home staring miserably out the window thinking, “Don’t throw up, don’t throw up,” to myself over and over again.

Zipper

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It was a momentous day – kidlet is finally tall enough to go on rides by himself.

A momentous occasion!

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Lamest. Slide. Ever. Not a single rider was able to make it to the bottom without having to push themselves with their hands. This sucker needed a liberal application of Pledge, stat.

Lamest. Slide. Ever.

Leonard thought lying down would make things go faster. Wrong.

Lamest. Slide. Ever.

Bumper cars

Bumper cars

Fishin

I would love to have a job finding and replacing all the burned out light bulbs on carnival rides.

I am so excited that Joy will be here in two weeks. I can’t believe that the last time we saw her, Mim looked like this:

Teh Bebeh gets into stuff.

And now she looks like this:

Mim, cute yet incredulous

The times, they are a-changin’.

Tha Zippah June 12, 2009

Posted by jeninmaine in bebeh, kidlet, photography.
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I don’t know why but I love taking pictures at carnivals and amusement parks. The tackier, the better. There’s something about having people all around you and the very unique cross-section of society they represent, about the lights and the machinery, the cords running across the ground. The fact that they can set up a facade of a dreamland in a tiny parking lot and then get people to walk round and round in continuous circuits to see everything. It’s seedy and fake and desperate, but at the same time we’re drawn to its twinkle and sparkle even though we know how fake it is.

Well anyway. I edited a bunch of photos from our visit but I need to add tags and captions in Flickr, and I need to write a intelligible entry about it all but it’s too late and I’m too tired so it’ll have to wait.

 

Zipper

 

Sewing and buttons and stuff. May 20, 2009

Posted by jeninmaine in bebeh, Crafty, Etsy, sewing.
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Danger, Will Robinson, danger! The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess is a very fun game. Very fun. I love it long time. I stayed up a bit too late playing it the other night and will need to put myself on a very strict LoZ diet so I don’t overdo it. It’s funny – I don’t play a lot of video games any more, and it’s not because I don’t like them. It’s because I do like them, and I like them so much that I will play in completely irresponsible quantities.

I’ve been naughty – I’ve wanted to do creative things at night once the kids are in bed and decided to play LoZ “just for a few minutes”, which quickly turns into an hour or more. Need to focus. Game is fun but time is fleeting.

I did buy the buttons for Mim’s jumper, I just need an evening where I’m not playing video games when I have the time to get the sewing machine set up to make buttonholes. I figure I’m going to do my sewing all at once so I went ahead and cut out another jumper from this gorgeous batik from the LYS/LQS.

Another jumper

Oh, I love it so much. I’m going to use the same green batik for the inside yoke as I did for the first one.

Ack, my tablecloth is horrible. Oh well…what do you want for $2 at Goodwill?

Since I’m sewing again I once again have lots of scraps. I hate throwing anything away so I try to come up with ways to use as much as I possibly can. Buried in my sewing stuff I unearthed a drawer of button-making stuff, hooray! So I did that.

First, some buttons – the trees are 1″ and the batik are 5/8″ and 1/2″.

Sweetieboos

Sweetieboos

I also used some of the 1/2″ buttons with flat backs to make pretty thumbtacks.

Tickytackyboos

I used Gorilla Glue for this batch – normally I use E6000 or Bond 527 but they both have pretty strong fumes so I thought I might try something new.

Tickytackyboos

The bottle said, “Will expand.” I thought to myself, “That’s probably just for fabric or wood.”

Ha!

I am loving the fabric covered whatnots, it would be a great way to recycle old clothing, too. I’m always looking for ways to reuse stuff. I’ve started reusing my paper coffee filters – I have a #2 cone filter and it seemed stupid (and expensive) to throw out the unbleached paper filters that I use in it after every cup, so I started just rinsing them out after each use and using the same one throughout the day. I haven’t tried letting it dry out and using it the next day, maybe I’ll do that today. In any case I won’t have to buy filters as often.

Two great website links for today!

<a href=”https://www.jcarolinecreative.com/&#8221; target=”_blank”>j.caroline creative</a> – just go look.  It has the covered button stuff and so, so much more.  Love this site.

<a href=”http://www.trueup.net/&#8221; target=”_blank”>True Up</a> – everything about fabric, LOVE this blog.  Also has a great <a href=”http://www.trueup.net/?cat=143&#8243; target=”_blank”>sale alert section</a>.

Up too late. May 16, 2009

Posted by jeninmaine in bebeh, Crafty, sewing.
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I’m bad. I was so jonesing to sew today that I literally daydreamed about it, all day long. I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I got my fabric prewashed and ready to go and was obsessing over it.

We didn’t play D&D tonight (since I wasn’t able to sew last night) but I still wanted to see people so we ended up with everyone over here. It was a bit of a fiasco getting the kids to bed and then I couldn’t zone out and concentrate just on my project because we had company. Don’t get me wrong, I was glad to see everyone, I was just so distracted. At one point Michael suggested we all play a game and the top of my head nearly blew off. I held it together but he sensed something was wrong and asked me in the kitchen, “Is everything all right?” to which I answered, “Do you really want to discuss this here, now?” I think he got the point as he then arranged for the guys to play a game while the girls hung out in the living room and did crafty things while watching a movie.

Still, I ended up doing more movie-watching than working on stuff as I couldn’t give it my full attention. And Mim woke up halfway through and didn’t want to go back to sleep so I held her in my lap for a while.

Once everyone left and Michael went to bed I just dove right in and now it’s 3:43am and he is going to kill me in the morning because I am going to be wiped. I’m so stupid. But still, I wouldn’t have been able to sleep thinking that I had wasted another night, so really, what was the most sane option?

Anyway here it is – the jumper I made for Mim. All it needs are buttons and buttonholes and it’s done, I want to go to the LYS tomorrow to see what they have for buttons. I’ve just got it pinned for now.

Mim's jumper

I wanted to use a different fabric to line the yoke but I couldn’t find a coordinating stripe, so I went with this batik instead. I like the way they go together but are very different.

Mim's jumper

The thing looks huge – I made Large, which was 21-25 pounds, I think, which is bigger than Mim but only looked slightly bigger than a Gymboree 6-12 month jumper she’s just about to grow out of. We’ll see when she tries it on. At the worst she wears it toward the end of the Summer and then I can put it over pants in the Autumn.

I do want to make a pair of matching panties to go with this, I need to make sure I have elastic for them first. I’m sure I do in the bin full of ill-fated diaper supplies that yielded one half-sewn diaper.

I also made this today – I found a free gif animator called UnFREEz and was testing it out so I used these cute pictures of my darling (ebil) girl.

Photobucket

Ok, to bed. Well, after I clean up my sewing machine and stuff.