Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Traveling Teacher

It's been another busy week here at Chez Surprise!

The weekend was spent down south for Accademia/Ithra and visiting friends and family.  I drove down to Heide's with Cammie.  We pulled in and had a cuppa and got to bed by midnight.  A3 had a friend staying the night so there was a lot of giggling, but they were shuttered away in her room having a great time.

We woke up early and started getting ready.  And get this:  I forgot to bring my undertunic.  I quickly pulled out one of my class samples for the undertunic class I was scheduled to teach, and quickly sewed it together on Heide's machine, nicknamed "Satan".  It behaved well for me for the duration, so threw all my stuff into the car and we headed over to the happenin' town of Scappoose to teach at the high school.  Heide and her eldest, A1, joined us later in the afternoon to sit in/participate in a dance class.

I taught two classes:  one on Viking Undertunics, which had 3 students and a model, and Bog Coats, that had 8 or 9 students.  There were one or two who didn't show up--possibly one that said, "I'll be there!" and then doesn't show.  I had one or two do that to me and decided that all students need to be pre-paid or I wasn't going to save them a spot.  For some classes, it's not a big deal to add one more at the end, but for others, the teacher needs to have all the kits prepped and assembled.  For Bog Coats, I just needed to have enough handouts printed--the rest of the supplies were brought by the students.  For the most part, the students caught on and had a great time.  I had a couple of students who were doing a lot of "show me that again..."  In the end, they all got it and had a coat ready to sew together (not enough time in the class to do that).  However, it'll be the last time I teach it--I think I'd rather teach a simple rectangular constructed coat that is documentable.  

That night, we got back to Heide's and we had a little stir fry and rice and I made cookies for them.  I've written down the recipe for the cookies 3 or 4 times for her, but she says she keeps losing it, so maybe I'll just publish it right here.  :)
Karen's Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 sticks butter, soft
1/2 c. sugar
3/4 c. brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 c. flour
chocolate chips

After a very restful night in A3's room, we got up to do a little Geocaching and dropped in on A1's senior photo shoot.  We got her some flowers for her pics and even though it was very cold, she kept on smiling and looked fabulous!  We had lots of laughs and several of her pics reflected genuine joy.  This is one of my photos where she was transitioning to the next pose.  We were cracking jokes about how silly those professional photographers talk to models... "Be ze tiger!  Be an angry tiger!  Show me ze anger!"  I guess they were quoting "Zoolander" and some other silly movies (that I haven't seen or remember).

At about noon, we headed down to visit with Mike & Laura and Mr. M.  We went out to lunch at a lovely little cafe about 5 minutes away from their house.  I got a thing with potatoes and chicken sausage that was really simple and GOOOD!  I want to try to recreate that at home.
Mr. M. and Cammie got acquainted and hit it off.  I was still a person of suspicion, so I tried to hold him for a minute and he wanted to go right back to Cammie.  She's just a natural caretaker and friend.

Monday was a long day at Children's again, but it marked the end of the medical trial.  We finished up the short term science experiments for Ben, but still have a couple of follow-up appointments for lung function tests and blood draws.  Kelly took the day off and he drove down after lunch so he could take the afternoon shift and I came home to pick up the girls from school.

After they got into the car, I suggested we do a quick shopping trip.  I promised Cammie a birthday shopping spree and Emma needed a couple things for her cosplay costumes.  It's really blurry, but this is what Cammie selected for her wardrobe.  It included 6 shirts, 3 pairs of jeans and 3 dresses.  We might add a little color to the peach dress since it's almost the same color as her peaches-and-cream skin.  The white frock shirt is really cute and we added the teal shirt underneath, which turns out to be a perfect match.  The great thing is all these pieces ended up being just over $100.  Emma's two items totaled $36 for a pair of boots and pants.  I got one sweater and a couple of kitchen items.  I love that store!

Today was a day of "normal" (whatever that means...) and tomorrow is back to the "abnormal" (more doctor appointments).  But for now...sleep.  Too many late nights and early mornings.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

A Dry Month? Hardly.

It has been 31 days since I posted.  Time flies like an arrow!  Fruit flies like my kitchen!  Well, a few of them do.  Just when I think they're gone, I see one.  Not millions...just one. Weird.

Lots of things happened this last month...

We had a sweet 16th birthday for Emma.  It was a mellow occasion marked with two friends, cake, and pizza.  They just wanted to watch anime and eat sugar and starch, and change into different costumes.  I tried to make an interesting cake, which was a double red velvet with chocolate frosting--yes, that's a full cake mix on the bottom square and a second cake mix for a two-layer circular cake.  With her are Miss E, her bestie from 4th grade, and another Miss E, her new bestie from high school.  New bestie decided not to wear her prosthetic in the evening...it gets heavy, she said.

I finally got my long arm back from the repair shop which needed something like $3,000 in repairs, all of which were covered by the extended warranty I purchased for $400.  Totally worth it!  I'd look it up, but it's dark in the room and I'm tired.  Maybe I'll look it up tomorrow if I think of it.

While I was waiting, I got a couple quilt tops finished and I need to start quilting them.  I'll have to find some backing fabric to finish these.

The school moved its annual Jog a Thon to the fall instead of the Spring, and it eliminated the fall magazine sale.  I like that.  I was getting so tired of foisting stuff on friends and family whose kids were also selling the same stuff.

I went to an SCA event that turned very rainy and muddy.  By the end of Saturday, the river had risen a couple feet and everyone was evicted from the site.  I hadn't planned on staying the night anyway--it's too late in the year to camp that close to the snow line.  My yurt is not Mongolian-winter-ready, which means I don't have it lined with a heavy wool blanket on the walls and roof.  Maybe someday, but for now, it's just canvas.  I have fleece that I can line on the interior walls, but I'd really need a roof liner to keep it really warm.

I got a picture of lovely Bekah by the river.  I don't know why so many of my photos are coming out blurry when it's set on 'auto'.  Ugh.  This is supposed to be a better 14 pixel camera and I'm getting lots of crap photos unless I'm standing absolutely still.  I've gotta find my red instant camera again.

They had an excellent food contest.  I love this pig!  SO cute!  And it looks delicious!  And edible!  Now this event's theme is "Banner War", and you can almost see the banner lying across the pig, but they have another event in the Spring called "Boar's Hunt", which this would be ideal for.  I don't think it'll keep 'til May...

Ben was enrolled in a medical study for a new CF medication.  This means several hospital visits, lots of EKG tests and blood draws.  He's such a trooper about it!  He will be well-compensated.  Since this is a short 2-week study, we'll be done in a few days.  There will be a long study probably starting in February, that he's likely to be enrolled in.  You can also see his feeding tube button, or as I called it, "Baby's First Piercing".  We have to pull it out and put in a new one every 3 months; he's actually due to swap out button now.

Portrait: High tea for dinner!
Bekah and I had a tea party last week, just for fun.  We made cucumber sandwiches, chicken salad on croissants, scones with jam and Devon cream, lox and cream cheese, turkey and swiss rolls, spinach salad, lobster bisque, and of course, tea.  It was a fabulous feast and I had leftovers for a few days.  Bekah folded the napkins all fancy, too!

Tonight we went out to celebrate Miss Cammie's birthday!  She chose the local Teppanyaki/Bennihana place as her restaurant of choice.  Because it was Thursday, Bekah joined us for dinner and a show!  Ben decided to fill in as chef...OK, this was at the end of the meal.  He really enjoyed the show, though it was sometimes loud and bright so he covered his ears.  He enjoys all the silly puns and juggling from the chefs, though.

I tried to get a sweet family photo, but Emma put up bunny ears on Cammie.  The camera, sadly, didn't click when I wanted it to.  This is the next frame, Cammie turning back and saying, "Heyyyy!" while Emma giggled.

Another attempt and Emma hid behind her book.  Ah well.  It's a charming photo of the birthday girl!

As for me, I've been coughing for at least a month since I had my cold.  I have inhalers and cold and cough remedies galore, but nothing seems to work.  Hopefully it'll clear up soon!!