Thursday, June 9, 2016

A pause

I have several projects going at the moment, but no hurry on any of them. Which is good, because we need a Family Sick Day today. So I can catch up on listing some of the things that I have been doing:

From the box of cedar shingles, I used some shingles for flower bed edging--just by pushing them into the ground, thin edge first, in a row. This was in an awkwardly unfinished area next to the house, where a bunch of sand had been put in as fill, so I knew that the ground would be neither hard nor rocky. I was able to push them all in by hand, with some effort. I sowed some wheat berries behind them, which are now sprouting well.

The rest of the shingles, I used to line the closet shelves where we keep our wool clothing and blankets. Not quite as good as a cedar chest, because they're not enclosed, but maybe it will work. In our previous house, we didn't have problems with moths, because the closets were tucked under the eaves and weren't very well-insulated (in fact, they were the insulation) so they got far too cold for moths in the winter. In this house, the closets are all on interior walls. I haven't seen any signs of moths, but I'd rather keep it that way.

We have two metal-framed straight chairs with vinyl seats and backs that we've been using as dining room chairs for forever. (They were $1 each at a yard sale.) The frames have held up well, but the children have been very hard on the seats with their forks, scissors, and picky little fingers. (Hence the seat covers that I made a while back.) I've started the re-covering process by taking off the seats and backs (held on by screws), and prying out the staples and prying open the hooks that held the vinyl on. There was one screw that was rusted in; I kept soaking it with WD-40, and finally got it loose a few days later. New vinyl is going to cost about $25, from the marine upholstery supplier, if the homemade oilcloth that I am experimenting with making doesn't work out.

I also have started deconstructing the dumpy blue rummage sale armchair. It is well-made, with lots of little tacks to pull. I am taking careful notes as I remove the old upholstery.

I finished the clothesline basket a while back; I'm just waiting for a day with good light and charged camera batteries to take a picture of it. It is now in the living room, serving as a container for all the small toys that keep migrating into the room.

I also experimented with putting white electrician's tape on the beige bedroom window frames, but didn't like how it looked. (There are some helpful tips here on how to apply this kind of tape.) I may try taping just parts of them later, in some sort of pattern; first accept, then transcend.

I looked at the paint colors throughout the house, and how other colors look against them. The walls are all very muddy neutrals, not mixes of clear primaries as the "mouse colors" in the Jeanne Dobie book are, so any real color (or wood grain, even) really stands out, but will not look harmonious unless there is some mud in the color. Bah. So far, I have coped with this by using artwork and textile patterns that include a little mud color. But the accepting step is hard:  "This is why we can't have nice colors."

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