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Diane
25 February 2017 @ 08:00 am
It's been forever and a day since I've posted up the new offerings in my Etsy shop, and some special requests made for fun, and given the last post, I think it's time for something a bit cheerier. So, here's what I have been up to for the past year, plush-wise:

I've been busy!Collapse )

Current project is making a dolphin hand puppet for the two D&D friends mentioned previously in this post, as they are going as Archer characters to a convention this next week. I don't watch Archer, but it's hard to turn down a request, as more often than not, I learn I can make things I would have never thought I could make! It's been fun, and a nice diversion from dwelling on Lincoln being gone. I still miss you, my silly fluff.
 
 
Current Mood: awakeawake
 
 
Diane
20 January 2017 @ 10:50 am
I'm not sure how in-depth I'll go with this, because the past month hasn't been very easy, but I also feel I ought to write things down, to perhaps someday have a better idea just what happened. The short: on Wednesday, January 18, 2017, we had to put our silly fluffy cat, Lincoln, to sleep.

The long.Collapse )
 
 
Current Mood: draineddrained
 
 
Diane
17 October 2016 @ 11:15 am
Well, the storm they doomed and gloomed about turned out to be mostly nothing. Sure, there were a few downed trees (including a tree in my parents' flower bed, so now my mom grieves its loss), and at least one casualty (NEVER go outside near trees in a windstorm!), and a truck had its cab crushed in by a falling tree (and yet, the driver walked away without injury), but overall, not worth all of the hype the media had for it. Oh well. I guess we'll be stocked and prepared for any future storms, which will happen eventually, since this is just the beginning for us.

In any case, I didn't want to take any chances with working on the Milgasia plush prototype in case we did lose power, so what better way to spend a Monday morning?

 photo milgasia_plush_01_zpsk9hx2pzu.jpg

I'm honestly surprised every aspect of the test pattern worked out, from his too skinny tail tip, to his horns. I must finally be learning!

 photo milgasia_plush_02_zpsybs2l9mp.jpg

And now I realize I forgot to stitch in his nostrils! Easy enough to fix, but it will have to wait, since the bitty baby boy is awake from his nap, and wailing to be rescued from his crib. Duty calls! For now, Milgasia shall protect my bookshelf.
 
 
Current Mood: awakeawake
 
 
Diane
08 July 2014 @ 05:22 pm
Long time no post, and it wasn't even intended! I've spent the past few months busy with something, be it sewing a ton for a pioneer trek, or working out in my garden. I really wish I had taken progress shots.

Well, the pioneer trek came and went a couple weeks ago. It was grueling, especially since I was in the thick of female woe, but my sewn clothes performed well, and all of the hiking I did pre-trek meant not a single blister! Also, expensive sleeping bags are so worth it when they don't soak up rain water while one sleeps blissfully unaware at night. :)

I'll have pictures in August, when our designated photographer gives us DVDs of what he took on trek.

The garden goes much better than expected, all things considered. Five of my eight tomato seedlings died before ever making it outside, but at least one has gone to town growing this past month. It is about two feet tall now, and has almost a dozen blooms in various states. Another has a few blooms but is only about a foot tall, and the last is trying to reach a foot, but we'll see what happens.

The peppers are another story. I accidentally killed them by overwatering them, so I tried again with a fresh batch of soil and seeds. It's been over a month without so much as a sprout happening. I think it's time to give up and make preparations for this next winter. Oh well.

To get over my pepper failure, I planted green beans, carrots, and dill. As of now I have a few baby green beans happening, with many more blooms to go, quite a few happy carrots, and little poofs of dill. It's fun to go out every day and see how everything is doing.

Last but not least, when I was at the hardware store about a month back to get a bucket for the pioneer trek, I decided to try my luck with pumpkins since I ended up with extra space in the garden. I planted four seeds, but only one sprouted. I had to baby it along at first (we kept having heavy rain and wind, which destroyed a lot of my raspberry canes), but just this morning I saw the tell-tale twisty-turny ropey vines starting to grow from the main plant. I may have pumpkins this fall after all. :D

Life in general goes well. I made new friends at work, even while having to say good-bye to a long-time coworker who left the military and went back home to Texas. It's fun having a not-so-secret work hiking group, and I found out my yard is great fun for said coworkers' dogs, which is great. Lincoln and Ralph have acclimated well to the outdoors, too, and now spend most of the day outside when I am home and can let them do so. It's wonderful seeing Ralph and Lincoln play in the yard.

I'll keep it at that for now. Summer came on time this year, which means a lot of weeding and general yard care has happened, and I am tired! Time to kick back and relax for the evening, before jumping back into it on the morrow.
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Current Mood: tiredtired
 
 
Diane
20 February 2014 @ 01:27 pm
This might have to become a new thing for me on here, as I'm really getting into taking care of my own place. At least mostly… Cleaning things isn't so exciting (but I do like what comes after), but I am stoked about the yard!

A few weeks ago when I was still getting ready to be married and running errands with my mom, we went to Costco and I saw a most beautiful sight: baby fruit trees! I grew up with an orchard, and even though I didn't always enjoy harvesting the fruit (I HATE pie cherries), I always enjoyed having fruit on hand.

Fast-forward a few weeks to being married (the other day), and needing to make a grocery run. Until we get things organized, I can only go to Costco with Husband Man in tow, so we did just that. And to my amazement, there were still a lot of baby fruit trees! $12 is a pretty great price for being able to grow your own fruit, so we came home with a baby Rainier cherry tree. We couldn't plant it that late at night, so I resigned myself to going to work the next morning. What with the nasty wind and rain storms we've been having, I was thinking it might be a few days before I could plant the baby tree.

Well! As it turned out, about an hour before I was to get off work on Tuesday, the clouds all but left, leaving me with very soft ground to work with. So, one quick run to the hardware store later (I needed a shovel!), I set to work digging a hole in the front yard! …only to learn that the two big brown spots on the lawn are where huge trees were cut down and the stumps were ground down to about a half-foot under the lawn's surface, so they'll not be viable tree-planting places for another year or three.

Not to be deterred, after some reading up on good places to plant trees where there are existing root systems (however dead), I walked a few paces away from one of the buried bark piles and sunk my shovel into dirt. I have to say, digging holes was one of my favorite things to do as a kid, so it felt pretty great throwing all of my weight into the shovel this time in order to dig a hole for the waiting baby tree. Made struggling with the long hose worth it, really. (I'm quickly learning that being short and dealing with long, new garden hoses must make for comedy gold for any spectators.)

Once I had a deep enough hole, I placed the baby tree in its new home…and then it didn't feel right just chucking out the grass that I had displaced, so I used it to create a cover around the roots of the tree. I'm glad I did, as the next morning we awoke to frost, so it was somewhat reassuring knowing the baby tree has some protection against the cold. (Doesn't hurt cherry trees are supposed to be pretty tolerant of cold, too.)

It feels really silly, but every time the wind has picked up, or even late last night when the rain came back with a vengeance, I keep peeking outside at my baby cherry tree. I really want it to thrive and do well, so I keep checking it. I actually wanted to post all about it the other day, but I didn't want to gush all about it only for it to keel over and die, so I've been waiting to see signs of life. When we initially brought it home, it was covered in buds, a few just starting to open, revealing baby leaves. Well, this morning I walked outside and saw that more buds are starting to open, so I'd say that's a good sign!

 photo baby_cherry01_zps0dc8e8b8.jpg

Here's my silly baby tree that I am so happy about. It has liked the fact that it has been getting plenty of sun since I brought it home (better than being kept in a warehouse for the past month or so), and it seems last night's torrential downpour didn't overwater it, either. At the moment the tree stands a bit taller than I am. From what I have read, no trimming should happen its first year, but come next winter, I'm supposed to cut the branches back pretty far. Almost makes me feel bad.

 photo baby_cherry02_zps0bd7a767.jpg

Here's a closeup of some of the leaves starting to open. It's almost stupid how happy this made me to see, but there's just something about taking something and helping it to thrive. Plus, in a few short years, provided the neighbor's slightly older cherry trees cross-pollinate it, it ought to give us delicious fruit!

 photo baby_cherry03_zps6682dfb5.jpg

And here's a quick photo of the front of my house, complete with stupid hose, and Narnia-esque lamp shadow. We need to do something about the lamp, as its concrete base is all busted up and just sitting there, not keeping the base protected from the elements. Might get rid of it, but it is pretty nice having a light source in the front yard at night…

I'm pretty happy Spring is coming, too. Might actually break down and get another baby fruit tree if they are still available. I'm not sure if the neighbor's trees will cross-pollinate mine, plus homegrown fruit is the best! And sweet cherries are also the best candy one can get their hands on, when it is freshly picked from the tree. Gah, waiting a few years for this tree to be old enough to bear fruit is going to be hard! For now, I'll keep babying my baby tree and watching it grow. And maybe I'll get it a buddy soon.

For now, I ought to do exciting things like laundry and scrubbing up the toilets. Whoo.
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Diane
While our government plays, I've been keeping myself busy with work. Be it selling dog food, or willing my sewing machine not to skip stitches, I've been pretty busy. One of the sewing requests took me from my realm of safety, as they wanted a Manticore that was 20 inches long. After a couple of weeks figuring out how I would do it, once I got down to it this past week, this is what I ended up with:


Special Request - Oversized Manticore Plush
by ~IchibanVictory on deviantART

Is it perfect? No. Did it turn out better than expected? Yes. Would I make more? ...maybe. I need to rework the face and belly, but overall the buyer was happy, which is what matters in the end!

Now I need to go to the fabric store and hope they still sell that color of fleece, else Manticores just became a critically endangered species!
 
 
Diane
22 August 2013 @ 02:39 pm
Well, he took his sweet time coming, but yesterday morning my older sister's baby boy finally decided it was time to come out into the world. I've yet to see him, but so far he seems a rather quiet child compared to his siblings. I can only hope he'll be a help to his parents, and not quite so troublesome as his siblings. Time will tell.

As for the other, my younger sister is due soon, so we're not ready to move past new baby glow just yet.

But, in other news, we had an inspection done on the house yesterday, and so far everything seems really minor as far as repairs go. I think the only thing we'll really need to be doing is updating the innards of the house, but one step at a time to accommodate our budget. I must say, while shag carpeting is outdated for obvious reasons, it was really comfortable to lay down on after being out in the heat for over an hour. We may lose its cozy feel, but that's what rugs are for! ...right?

So, still waiting to hear the final word on the house, but all signs continue to point to YES as far as being able to actually purchase it. Then it'll be happy fun times repainting the inside as the first step of making the house nicer. (And visiting places like Craigslist or IKEA to properly furnish the house.) The next few months are going to be an adventure!

Aside from those big things, life continues onward. I've really cut back on buying games to try and get more money into savings (so no Mario & Luigi RPG for me!), but I did get Ducktales: Remastered for the Wii U the day after release and I've been playing it in my spare time. Ducktales was never my favorite cartoon - not to say I didn't like it! - but it's been fun to catch up with the characters again, and since I never got to play the original NES game, I finally get to see what all this using a cane as a pogo stick is all about. And I like it. I like it a lot. Also a great game for the little relations to watch, as the characters are bright and well-animated, so it really captures their attention.

I need more classic Disney platformers in my life, especially from the NES era, methinks. Maybe if the game sells well, this will entice Capcom, Wayforward AND Disney to look into polishing up more of the classics I never got to play!
 
 
Diane
21 July 2013 @ 12:29 am
Why aren't I in bed?! Oh, that's right, because CREATIVE SURGE!

The other day I got an order for a Displacer Beast, then the next morning I got another order for a Displacer Beast, so Displacer Beasts have been on the brain. They actually came together a lot faster than normal (proof I am bonding with my new sewing machine at last), and then it was a very slow day at work today (allowing me time to do a rough sketch pattern idea), so…

Cue the Displacer Beast's natural enemy!

It yips, yaps, and is Lawful Good!Collapse )

In other news, Disney recently (FINALLY) released the second-half of season two of Gargoyles, but ONLY for Disney Movie Club members. This prompted me to finally join since I've been waiting for the latter-half of season two for years, so I've been marathoning it for the past few days. Even though they basically slapped a cover on a DVD case and crammed three DVDs onto the same peg (why??), the quality of the show is fine, and there is zero editing! Color me a happy fan.

Now, if you'll excuse me, it's time to read through the comics again, as they take place right after season two. Let us never speak of season three! ;) (Okay, we can, but I never saw all of the episodes, and they were very different. Greg Weisman wasn't involved, it wasn't a true season of Gargoyles, blah blah blah.)
 
 
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
 
 
Diane
10 July 2013 @ 01:37 pm
My sister the educated art student had a tablet she no longer needed, so in an odd way we're doing a trade; I get her old tablet, she gets my old sewing machine. Somehow, we'll both gain more skills in an area the other is better at. Somehow. (This also means more space under my sewing table once I give her my beloved Kenmore.) It's taken a few days for me to get around to it, but in the hour I had before work today, I searched online for a manual and a driver so I could use it, and here's the end result:

 photo tablet_test_zps1b0cf3c8.png

I know, nothing impressive, but this is amazing to me! I haven't drawn in Photoshop in forever since I could never make my lines curve enough. (Flash has been a lifesaver for that.) Turns out the quality of the tablet, and no doubt skill of the artist has an impact on this, because this was much less painful to draw! I think this will make for a worthy trade... :D

And one of these days, I need to put it to use updating the banners for my Etsy shop. And then, I need to get back to drawing in a more realistic style.

And don't worry, brendala, I'll drop my old tablet in the mail tomorrow. Unlike the one I got, you'll be getting everything it came with, including the oh so snazzy box. It was great to learn on. I hope you have a lot of fun with it. :)
 
 
Diane
Disney's version of the Lone Ranger came out on July 3rd, but in some freak occurrence, Kitsap County released it a day ahead, which means I got to see it early! I think I've said before that the Lone Ranger is my favorite 'super' hero of all time, so I was of course stoked to see it. I grew up listening to the radio show (thanks to my mom, who also grew up a fan), so I went to the movie with these expectations:

-The William Tell Overture
-Someone asking, "Who was that masked man?" or questioning his mask in some way

What I got was pretty different, but there are potential spoilers aheadCollapse )

I might have to make plush versions of Silver and Scout soon. :D
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Current Mood: happyhappy