Friday, October 29, 2010

All Hallow's Eve

Remember my to-do list earlier this month? Well it is time to see how we did turning this:
Emily in random thrift store prom dress
 into this:
Glinda, Good Witch of the North

We have one very important guideline when it comes to Halloween costumes - they have to be fashioned from a thrift-store find. No store-bought here. Emily actually decides on her costume the day after Halloween. And then she changes her mind 15 times.  Just in September of this year she went from Vampire to Peacock to Witch-with-a-fancy-hat to Glinda.  Once we select the "raw materials" for her costume, though, she is locked in.
She was pretty thrilled when we found a ball-gown style prom dress for $3.00. It started like this:
Every night it changed little by little:

Until it was all ready for her school parade this morning:
I was thrilled to find a roll of clear vinyl in the remnant's rack at JoAnn's Fabrics.  It was perfect for the wand and tall crown:
Emily...I mean, Glinda, looked great marching with Supergirl, a few princesses, and one or two cowboys.
There's nothing quite as challenging as a wedgie buried under a ball gown.
And this weekend we can look forward to some tricks and treats. Could you deny these pretty blue eyes?
Happy haunting!

Friday, October 22, 2010


There has been someone new flitting about our house lately. She is rather small, has a lot to say, and is capable of making very big messes. Would you like to meet her? Then please allow me to introduce you to:
Natalia Sassypants Gatlin Bear Madison
After weeks of cleaning Honey's litter box on a daily basis, Emily accumulated enough points to get her very own kitty. We chatted for a couple of days about the responsibilities of a pet owner and spent some time looking at photos on the website of a local shelter. And after what seemed like an eternity to Emily (but was actually only two days) she and Ben went to pick up her new kitty.
Emily took great care in choosing her outfit for adoption day
 Emily's first choice actually fell through, but I don't think she minds.
 She was slightly displeased with the rather plain "Natalia" as a name, but she managed to jazz it up a bit for the adoption paperwork.

As for the kitty, she was right at home within the first 24 hours.

 She loves her new mama and her new toys.
She also loves to play in her litter box - ewwwwww.

Unfortunately, we have someone who does not love Natalia.
Honey, sulking atop the mattresses in my workroom.
Hopefully it is just a matter of time.

Natalia chilling behind a door while Honey hisses in the wings.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

No 'Poo, week whatever

One of my friends and readers (Hi Tiffany!) recently mentioned that my posts have inspired her to give up shampoo so now that it is week whatever-it-is I thought I'd post a status update of my own hair situation. First, a quick recap because it has been at least two months since I last reported on my no 'poo-ness.

Back in April I stopped using shampoo and conditioner. By week two I was ready to call my new regime a success. In August I won the support of my hairdresser.

And then I moved to Tampa. For weeks I could not figure out the problem, but boy did I know there was a problem. My hair constantly felt like it had been dipped in wax. Even freshly washed, my roots would be plastered to my scalp and the ends would be all frazzled. It was awful. But fear not, Internet. I did not give up! I did reaearch instead.

Turns out, it is the incredibly hard Tampa water throwing a wrench in my no 'poo plans. (On a side note, I think it is also the source of some truly horrendous cystic acne.) If you have hard water a possible solution is to install a water softener. But we rent our home, and I do not have an extra $1000+ lying about. We might still consider getting a filter/softener to install just on the shower head. In the meantime, though, I have been using distilled water for rinsing my hair. I also caved and bought a bottle of conditioner.

So here is there hair I've been working with lately (on a day I did some actual heat styling):

I did, however, recently stumble across this enjoyable blog and will soon be putting her boiled baking soda experiment to the test. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Busy busy busy

I've been pretty bee-like lately which is why it has been a week since you last heard from me. I have about a thousand things to do and at least a hundred I want to tell you about.  Alas, I still only get a daily allotment of 24 hours. I thought perhaps I'd share some of my to-dos with you so you can help keep me accountable.

1. I need to turn this:
into this:
in time for Halloween.

2. I have to make chair pockets for Emily's classroom.

3. I am still working to make NPJ Design headquarters look less like this:
and more like:
Heather Bailey
4. I'm always working on unique designs for this place:
Plus I need to honor my pledge.

5. Because she earned it, we'll be taking Emily to get another one of these:

I once read you should never put more than five things on your to-do list lest you get overwhelmed, but I'm pretty sure you guys all know my list is never limited to just five things. I mean there's the cooking and cleaning, homework with Em, blog reading, blog writing, techniques to learn. See? Bee-like.

But you know the best part of being busy? It makes it even better when I take a break for a moment like this:

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

When did first grade become so complex?

E: Ugh, Nicholas. He just bothers me.
J: Oh? Why is that?
E: Because he thinks I'm his girlfriend.  I want to tell him I am an independent woman, but that seems mean so I keep ignoring him so he'll go away.
J: Gosh, it seems like it is more mean to ignore him without telling him the problem. Maybe you could tell him you are an independent woman but thanks anyway and you'd like him to stay just your friend.
E: No, mom. I'm pretty sure I'm going to stick with ignoring him.