Monday, October 21, 2013

I am not a huge fan of the creepy and nasty parts of Halloween, but I love any excuse to dress up, so I deal with it. I love creating costumes, and some years I have done in the neighborhood of 20 full costumes in the weeks before Halloween. The single WORST trend in costuming, though is this:

Also presented in this VERY crude (but sadly accurate!) video:

So, I was SUPER excited to find this site: Take Back Halloween "A costume guide for women with imagination". The costumes are all no-sew and (supposedly) easily replicated through found pieces or handily linked supplies. (The site itself doesn't sell anything; they just source the goodies for you.)

But here's the best part: these costumes are AWESOME. They have costumes that are refreshingly imaginative and detailed, drawing from historical figures, folklore, ancient religions, and a little of everything, really. In fact, you will get quite a history and world culture class just by reading through their site! YAY!

Friday, October 11, 2013

One of the things I love about General Conference, is knowing that the people I love, however scattered they may be, are sitting somewhere listening to the same words! Most of all, I love listening to the inspired messages of true Men & Women of God, who have given their lives in service to what they believe*.

My news last week was boring, because it was just being up to my eyebrows in canning. I see people who can quickly and gracefully, but I don’t seem to be one of them. Anyway, it was boring--even being here, and much worse to describe! I canned chicken (from my own flock), potato/carrot/celery soup base, hot pepper jelly and salsa. I got my garden cleaned out and ready for winter. I still need to do my flower beds. I have to finish winterizing both beehives this weekend. Yes, you read that right--BOTH hives! My friend Dave gave me his beehive, since they are moving across the country! YAY! (about the beehive--not the move, we will really miss them!) He has a very different kind of hive than I do, which I have been wanting to try, so it will be interesting to compare. I won’t move it up here until spring though, when it is lighter (because they eat all their honey stores) and they aren't defensive (because they don’t have any honey stores!).

Last week My Favorite Gentleman came home on Thursday night, so that on Friday, he was able to load up the truck (and BigGirl, LargeBoy & my youngest brother R) for their annual camping trip. I was planning on a quiet day watching Conference--with just Sister V & SmallDaughter, then the campers getting home around 6 for the guys to leave for their cookout before the Priesthood session. They had a great time, in spite of the rain (beautiful weather before and after!).

In the morning I ended up with most of my seminary class here (4 teen boys + mom + adorable baby sister, 8 months, very smiley!), and we were smashed into the office to watch on the desktop because my laptop died the death. And then, the campers came home at 3, soaking wet. We borrowed a laptop for the afternoon session (thankfully--there is NO WAY we could have fit another person--let alone 3--into the office!).

My Favorite Gentleman, Brother R & LargeBoy left for the Priesthood Session and Cookout, then, the seminary boys ended up being HERE for the Priesthood session, with parents & adorable younger sibs. Although it was not at all what I had planned, it was a good day. And I did manage to get the chicken in the pressure cooker--eventually. I worked on a project while I listened to conference--I crocheted a scarf for a dear friend, and I was pleased that it turned out really nice, especially since I don’t remember crocheting anything since college! I also untangled and rolled 2 pillowcases full of yarn that I had to was because it got wet and nasty in the basement.

On Sunday, I had to drive My Favorite Gentleman to his workplace, and we took SmallDaughter with us. As we drove along a road we don’t use very often, she saw the Farm Market, and said “there!”--pointing and gesturing! She remembered that TWO YEARS ago, we took her there for their hay maze and giant slide! I wasn't stopping on Sunday morning, but on Wed, we went into town early (BigGirl was setting up for Young Women) and I took SmallDaughter over--she had a great time!

The Wed activity was a “Virtual Road Show” for the Stake, and they filmed a pretty dang hilarious video! I must see if I can get a finished copy. Yesterday, BigGirl & I tended sweet Baby Girl, which was pretty exciting--BigGirl did a quick cleanup of the living room to get it safe for a crawler! SmallDaughter had riding, and the weather was SUPER perfect!

This weekend holds Seminary Inservice (for me), a Stake Youth Activity (for the yoots), and on Sunday--BigGirl is giving a talk, I am doing Sharing Time and we have Sunday Seminary afterwards. I need to get everything prepared today.

We are also pretty excited for our Netflix movie that comes today---the new version of “Much Ado about Nothing” filmed by Joss Whedon in 12 days, casting all of his friends! WOOT!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Some smells are hard to describe

I have to keep reminding myself of how much life has improved!!

SmallDaughter has had some great cognitive growth--I would say in most areas of development, she is definitely in the three year old range. She has also grown over an inch since April--big news for the girl who didn't grow at all for 3 years! That makes her about the size of the average 7 year old. It is easy to forget that chronologically she is almost 13. It is still bitter-sweet to see girls younger than she is that are doing "typical" things, but she is so cute and funny--and herself, that mostly I am just glad to have her.

I was planning to give her a bath tonight. Bath time for someone with Compulsive Skin Picking is NOT easy--she is fully clothed for the majority of the bath, then we cut the tape and take off the gloves, shirt and pants just in time for the final rinsing (or she picks the sores on her legs and elbows until her bath water is the color of Hawaiian Punch).


In the early afternoon, when I went to see what she was doing (silence is golden for some people maybe, but for me it is deeply suspicious!) the reason came clear--she was skating around the bathroom floor on the contents of a bottle of strawberry shampoo and a bottle of Old Spice Body Wash. LOTS of soap. So the bath came early! Still, I think that was the first (or at least the biggest) dumping incident of the week. There have been points in time where I would have traded a year off my life for just one, fairly easy to clean up incident!