Posts Tagged ‘crafting’

Cold cold cold

January 19, 2009

This is me these days:

Very cold and a bit resentful. The former because the house just won’t heat up properly, and I wear many layers of clothes, hats, and jackets to preserve my body heat. The latter because we’re paying what I’m guessing is more than Β£200 per month just to run the boiler and I feel that for that money I should be luxuriating in nothing but camisole tops should I choose to. So, due to cold, giving all our money to Scottish gas, and feeling generally lethargic, we haven’t been up to terribly much aside from the odd virus. Remember that song, ‘If we make it through December..’? Yeah, that month for me would be January. At least next month I can eat lots of chocolate and pester James for cheery flowers.

We’re fully back into homeschooling at least. Keeping the kids’ brains busy makes me feel less bad about not going hardly anywhere. They’re about to finish a math text which makes me feel vaguely accomplished. Though to be fair, we’re impatient learners and will have techically done less than 1/4 of the prescribed work as we have no desire to do busy work once a concept is mastered. The fact that I always performed worse in classes that required a lot of pointless scribbling is probably biasing my teaching methods, but we work with what we have..

When we’re not learning, we are doing crafts, building Lego and playing Wii. Oh yes, I got a Wii and Wii Fit for Christmas. You can guess who the only person still without a Wii Fit profile is :P. I’ll get around to it just a soon a I can remove a few layers of clothing without risking frostbite.

Some few pictures from the last month:

A rather badly taken photo of our Christmas spoils. ‘Spoil’ is a fairly appropriate word in this case, as the kids managed to end up with even more this year than usual. I think James wins as gift-giver this year with the boots he bought for me. He had noticed that I had ordered some boots on clearance only to have the order cancelled as they had run out of stock. Seeing that I was bummed out, he then went to Glasgow a few weeks later and managed to track down a pair for me–in the right size, in the right color! It was on this trip that he also managed to snag the Wii stuff. I was so dead impressed, particularly as his normal shopping strategy involves me having to kick him out of the house on Christmas Eve with the bank card.

I did manage to finish his quilt in time for Christmas, the piecing and binding hastily sewn up while he was away on business. The back is seriously amateurish, and the actual quilting was minimal. Fortunately, I had bought a high quality wadding which tolerated my half-assedness well, at least where the quilting was concerned. Technically, this is my first quilt that had a proper wadding and backing, and I found it enormously frustrating. The cotton and the wadding stuck to each other so much that trying to align and smooth them required almost more patience than I could muster. I was sure I must have been missing some key insider tips on making the whole experience zen-filled. Ah well. Also, you might notice the quilt is square rather than a standard bed size. I could pretend that I just like it that way, but the truth is that I screwed up a couple rows of cats and couldn’t bear the thought of picking out all those stitches. Fat quarter quilts are great, so long as you don’t screw up any of your pieces. Anyway, James likes it, or at least is wise enough to say as much. I DO like the cat motif. It’s hard to see, but the fabrics are all very beautiful, and have an asian theme. He picked them himself, actually! His Christmas sweater is almost finished, the knitting on the second arm due to be finished today.


This is one of the cuter advent calendars I’ve seen. James’ mom Anne sent it, and the kids really liked putting it together every day. They even hid little surprises in most of them and made up a game for us to play, which we finally got around to doing the other day. Very sweet.


Oh oh, Mo got me a gorgeous stack of fat quarters for Christmas. We seem to have a decent system–she sends me fabric that is so hard to get here (in person anyway) and I send her British yarn. Her birthday is coming up, and I’m having a terrible time trying to decide what to get. I want to get her loads and loads is the problem because I adore spoiling her, even more so now that she’s about to have her baby.

The cats have been up to the usual naughtiness.


I thought I was very clever repurposing a birdfeed holder for cat food. I forgot to consider the fact that birds aren’t capable of lifting lids of that size. It is now weighted with a jug of juice. I would love to have an immaculately styled home, but it’s precluded by my need to have the house strewn with McGyver-esque naughty cat solutions. The downstairs toilet is the absolute worst. I have, in this tiny room, two cat litter boxes; one open and another huge covered one. I also have to have a big empty plastic bin next to the toilet. Why?? Because Mittens prefers to urinate on bare floor. I suppose I should be grateful that he will at least use the bin, but sheesh. What really gets me is that if he sees that he has peed in the box and no one has gotten around to mopping it up yet, he will suddenly deign to use a litter box. Argh!


Mittens has extreme food tracking skills. We rarely get cat food in the Tesco order (grocery home delivery–a godsend, even if I do hate Tesco), and yet on the recent occasion that I did, he zeroed in on the bag, which was wrapped in another bag, neither of which was leaky, and prompty tore into it. Here James is extracting the kitten from the bag. Being on a diet must trigger some latent desperating hunting skills, or something. Poor fattypuss.


I found the kids these excellent super-challenging dot-to-dot books that are pretty addictive. Mittens even likes to give them a go..


Representative of who is in control of this household.

The kids were invited to a little Build-a-Bear party, which was very cute, have to say.


Funny, it was the adults who thought this part looked a bit dodgy. Growing up twists the mind..


Nyssa went for a typical cat-in-pink-dress sort of thing. Joseph chose a bear and dressed it in slippers, an army helmet, stuck a wee cat to its arm, and gave it a little backpack stuffed with another tiny animal. Hehe. Oh, also Grandpa Mike and Grandma Mel should note that I was serious when I said that Joseph wears his new hat everywhere! πŸ™‚


Lovely robin, very grateful for his food (better be–I buy him premium stuff) and look at how tubby he is, even though it’s midwinter! ❀

Me vs. the Cat: Sewing

November 30, 2008

Mitu has needs. Most of them involve being the centre of attention, particularly when I have things I want to get done, *most* particularly when I have things I want to get done without the addition of cat hair…


whether it’s napping on my very nice Scottish tweed…


or sitting on top of my neatly stacked, and equally nice quilting fabric…


or seemingly trying to open an artery on the rotary cutter. *sigh* He IS pretty cute though.

Halloween–Scotland Style

November 2, 2008

This year we decided to fully participate in Halloween. When we lived in a downtown area, it didn’t really make sense to. Now that we’re in a village, with streets with houses with front doors and porch lights, I thought we’d finally have our first British trick-or-treat.

Difference one: I don’t know how things have progressed in the States, but out here in the Scottish sticks, you’re not necessarily out of luck if you need huge amounts of groceries and don’t have a car. What this means is that we had our Halloween pumpkins delivered, which obviously took away a key aspect of the activity back home–getting to pick them ourselves. No matter, they worked out well enough. Here James is helping the kids plan their designs. That is, he’s trying to explain why perhaps carving a Darth Maul face is a bit ambitious for the amount of energy he had that evening.. I’m glad he was willing to do it, because I still had to sew up a rudimentary costume so Joseph could dress up as the aforementioned Sith.


Even in trying to be scary, Nyssa is incapable of not being cute.


You wouldn’t expect it, but Joseph will play to a camera..

On Halloween the kids were hopping around all day waiting to get dressed and go out. I was still fairly nervous about going, partially convinced that I had heard wrong and people would open their doors to us with utter bewilderment. The plan was to wait until well after sundown, but what I was actually waiting for was for some kids to come to my door first. Joseph pointed out the obvious logical flaw there–what if everyone does the same?? I told him I was fairly certain that no one else would be as out-of-the-know and neurotic as his dear mother. He wasn’t terribly impressed, but at about 6:30 some kids turned up and that was that.


Darth Joseph.


Cute devil fairy? I dunno, it was the best I could find on ebay at the last minute.

So off we went. I was unsure which houses to knock at, so I went with the old standby of only going for houses with porch lights on. This is a bit problematic, as most houses don’t actually have porches, but we made do. Some houses in the village were actually quite decked out in Halloween decorations. And at most houses the kids were invited in by older women who insisted that it was too cold the kids to be mingling about outside. That of course would be huge difference number two. I was strictly instructed as a child to never step over the threshold. Child molesters surely laid in wait if I did. At one house, there were some 20-somethings that had decorated, from what I could tell, their entire house and asked kids in to have a cookie and gave them each a party bag full of treats. I have to assume that this doesn’t happen in larger towns, particularly the unwrapped baked goods and fresh fruit we received (also huge no-nos from childhood–apples can contain razor blades, don’t ya know!).

I had made sure the kids had memorized a couple jokes because I had heard that a remnant from the old Scottish tradition of guising was that some folks expected kids to do some sort of trick–song, dance, joke, whatever. It’s a good thing I did, because that indeed was the norm. My assumption growing up was that trick or treat meant give me a treat from that big WalMart bag of candy or I’ll play a trick on you. This of course was bolstered by that lovely ‘trick or treat, smell my feet..’ rhyme that we all enjoyed so much. The kids’ small efforts were inordinately rewarded, I have to say. Between them, from not more than 15 houses or so, they had earned in excess of 8 pounds. There were also many full-sized candy bars in their stash.


Here they are with some of their spoils.

It was sort of amusing to run into other trick-or-treaters. I did notice that there were no fairies, Elvises, clowns, etc. Everyone was dressed ghoulishly, which I suppose makes some historical sense. I mean, a Tinkerbell wasn’t likely to scare anyone into giving her anything. Since all these kids go to school together, they all wondered, quite loudly have to say, who the heck Nyssa and Joseph were. One surmised that they were those American homeschooled kids he met once at the park, but that was quickly dismissed by his friend. Hehe.

The trick-or-treaters to my house were more confusing than anything. I certainly wasn’t going to make them tell me a joke. The majority of them were teenagers, I noticed. Back home that tends to get dirty looks. At one point I opened the door to a dozen or so teenage boys with horror masks on, standing around with their hands in their pockets. I looked at them, they looked at me. I finally asked them if they might like some candy. Some shuffled forward, some refused, saying that they were good guisers. One asked if I wanted to hear a joke. “Go on then,” I said. His joke: What comes out of your nose at 250 mph? A Lamborgreenie. *sigh* Another kid offered one: Why do you look down the toilet? To see poo. “Wow, that’s crap. Get it?!!” I replied. He just looked confused. Teenagers, eh? Most of the rest were less awkward, and we actually managed to rid ourselves of a big colander full of treats. I was quite impressed, and more than that I know what to expect for next year. I also don’t need to worry myself over the fact that the kids have missed 4 years or so of trick-or-treating–if we stay in this country they’ll be able to go out guising until they leave for university, apparently. πŸ˜›

I hope everyone had a fun and safe Halloween!

Quite possibly..

October 17, 2008

..the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever made. And that’s really saying something. From recent memory, you may recall my Ghetto Yarn Swift. And a lot of you saw the neo-romantic nightmare of a bathroom in my trailer, complete with victorian crimson walls, tiles, and an angel motif. *shudder* This is pretty goofy though–

I look sorta like an X-Men character and my super power is turning into Cookie Monster. The idea was to have cozy mittens to wear in my chilly house that didn’t impede my typing. For this they actually work fairly well. Being palmless, my hand is also not completely useless with the mouse. Now I am the envy of the cats–grippy skin on the underside like them, but with opposable thumbs! Beat that kitties! …

…Or just plant your ass on the hama beads. TouchΓ©, Mitu, touchΓ©.

Having gotten some sleep..

October 15, 2008

..morning deliveries notwithstanding..Ugh. Here are pictures from Nyssa’s birthday!


Nyssa grinning in anticipation of trying her bike.


James is good at this. πŸ™‚


I swear, they did manage to be upright at times.


Victory strut.


Woohoo!


Birthday lunch–PBJ on white and mac and cheese!


Looks cute enough, but it was a Tesco cake. British supermarket cakes are dry as sawdust. I’ve done this a few times. Even M&S is sub-par. It’s not even like I expect the fantastic shortening-laden creations from back home. After a few years of break from making those insane theme cakes it seems I’ll have to get back in the kitchen, so to speak.


Birthday battle. Battle is a recurring theme in my house πŸ˜›

It appears I didn’t really take many photos of her birthday. In a way that’s a good thing–it means things were low key. We’ve all been after that lately.

A few other things..


Harvesting potatoes at the farm yesterday. Kids did good, even with the midgies biting. I’m so itchy today! On the recommendation of Kosmick, Skin So Soft is in the mail!


Tubby cat tummy..in a tub.


James wasn’t home last night, so I made a classic–tuna casserole. Nyssa was less than impressed. Joseph it ate it all up. I ate the cheesy topping :P.


Mittens posing with my new yarn. I ordered some Christmas crafty presents for Nyssa and Mirasol’s (fair trade!) baby alpaca yarn was deeply discounted. I couldn’t resist, as Grandma R had indicated that it was that sort of fibre that made James’ scarf she made so lovely. I have just a skein of each, so they will probably end up as fingerless mittens or something.**Edit..as it turns out, Miski is baby llama. How funny that I didn’t notice *boggle*

Poor Nyssa. I think she’s getting sick. The other day she finally decided what to get with her Amazon money (thank you Grandma MK!) and it came today, but she can’t dredge up the energy to be excited and complains of feeling depressed. A combination of missing James and not feeling well, I think. I’ve got a killer headache myself. Why am I sitting at the computer then? The sunshine is warming this spot, and I’ve got a sunsoaked kitty next to me.

Sale at Purlescence..

October 12, 2008

I’ve had some very pretty Rowan yarn sitting around that I got at a huge discount (as it’s discontinued, meh) and the weather getting cool has reminded me that perhaps something made out of it would be very nice.

I found the pattern Alpine in the Rowan 42 magazine, and was contemplating having to buy the thing (they always cost Β£11 or so) when I came across a link to the pattern for free on Ravelry! If you make it up, note that the last stitch on row 37 should be K1, not K2.

I’ve made up one of the triangles. I think the yarn works rather well, though to get what I’ve worked out the measurements to be, I knitted 4 fewer rows. Shall see how it ends up fitting.

After doing one section on straight needles, my wrists were dying. A combination of too much typing, gardening, and such is just too much for the puny things, and the only 10mm circular needles I have are 1. much too short and 2. MIA. The UK lux knitting webshop Purlescence happened to have a sale on needles, so I picked up a few sets..


Some indian rosewood Colonials, 10mm


Coconut palm Lantern Moons, 12mm.

I got some 10mm dpns as well, as I’m always wishing I had some, some bag handles, a couple buttons..

A few other things..

Mitu shares my feelings about the news recently..

Gratuitous paw shot

We’ve tried to make Mittens any number of bespoke beds. This is what he goes for *sigh*

Or this, aw

The couch is also a part-time venue for war-making. *sighsighsigh*

That would be before they rounded up the pillows and all chaos ensued. This would be the real reason I try to keep non-essential items in the living room to a minimum.

Where’s the Nikwax??

October 10, 2008

I don’t know if you’ve noticed in the sidebar, but there now a link to a little blog I keep for my garden. It’s where I indulge my need to post pictures of robins and roses and suchlike. I made a post detailing the things I ordered from a nursery a week or two ago. Anyway, point is, they all came today. The weather was not good. Very windy in the AM and very rainy in the PM. Before the weather switched over to the afternoon’s downpour I went outside to try to get some of them in the ground. I started with the items going along the perimeter of the house, which was probably a mistake. For some reason, someone thought it a brilliant plan to put 6 inches of pokey red rocks all around the house, even in areas obviously meant for plant bedding. Rocks are not good mulch, even crappier as soil! Also, as the garden hadn’t been tended for a while, there were many stubborn things to be uprooted. We now have several square feet of dirt where I pulled out things that had invaded the lawn. I like naturalized gardens, so long as everyone knows their place! I also found yet another random pipe coming out of the ground. Nobody knows anything about the workings and history of this house as it’s so old so there’s no chance of my knowing if it’s important or not. I managed to get in the salix (mini pussy willow!), the two jasmines, and the australian mint bush (smells gorgeous, truly). I was wet, but doing alright until the rain soaked through my army coat (stupid me, not having waterproofed it..) and water dripped down my soaked hair and into my eyes. I started to dig up more rocks but finally admitted to myself that I had probably best go inside. I tend to get a bit obsessively focused on things, sometimes ignoring good sense (people who know me are probably pointing and laughing :P). So I sheltered the remaining plants reasonably, and gave up for the day. I really hope the weather improves tomorrow. BBC weather is being a tease.

Joseph, my dear child, has developed some interesting Britain-specific quirks. I found him a couple hours ago sitting on the couch with a dozen or so stuffed animals watching Mock the Week, one of the UK’s more cynical current events quizcoms.

So, I have some photos. I may as well post Nyssa’s birthday pictures separately, as there are quite a lot.


In a bid to save money and make Jamie proud I redid an old purse that was missing its handle. I love the tacky owls ever so much. The handle is also in that fabric.


The new stripes in my hair. The lady didn’t want to lighten my hair all at once, so she’s going to do a few sessions of highlighting. That would be the reason for the evil blonde. I dunno, now that it’s got a weird red in it, I don’t hate it nearly so much. My hair is finally growing out as well. The ladies said my hair was a such good shape. I had to laugh. It’s because I never style it and don’t wash it any more than I absolutely have to. It’s nice that there are *some* areas of life where the path to health is laziness.


This just makes me happy. Organized gift wrapping stuff.


Last week we went to the zoo! Joseph took our pictures. Not bad! This is the first time I hauled out the winter coat this season.


What’s this? What poor little thing is the losingest animal today?


Aww..


In the education building. Hmm..


A homeschool mum was nice enough to organize a talk for us on the Budongo chimpanzees and the local villagers.


Carrying things on your head is harder than it looks.


Aw…a stuffed penguin is extra pathetic.


Maybe he misses his friend.


I wonder what he’s thinking about. I find it interesting that he puts his hands between his knees when he lays on his side as I do.


This is a nifty sculpture.


They have just one polar bear.


I heard an enormous amount of screeching and thought the chimpanzees were running riot. Turns out a bunch of kids from a primary school had turned up at the playground. At one point a chimp, who was in the cage adjacent, did come up and yell at them in a ‘hey you kids, get off the lawn!’ sort of way. The photo above is telling. If *Nyssa* thinks people are being too loud…hehe.


Gorgeous male leopard. His spots are visible in the sunlight.


I just don’t know what to make of this. The poor cat was obviously stressed, as he was pacing back and forth endlessly.


That said, they are in a desperate situation. There have got to be some in captivity with those numbers to ensure that they aren’t lost forever.


Another beautiful cat.


Badgerbadgerbadgerbadger…this little guy was so hard to photograph! He just trots and trots all about.


I had never seen a Pallas Cat before. He is just completely charming!


He was even obliging enough to wash his little face while I was watching. He is terribly covetable, I must admit.


A fairly excellent facial expression.


Jamie loves lemurs. We found him a wee one in the gift shop on the way out.


He has such a fascinating face. OK OK, I realize my commentary is lame. I’m no Attenborough. Moving right along..


On the train home, we had to stop for a while on the bridge. That’s always fun. At least I had the leisure to get some pictures of the road bridge.


On Tuesday we went to help at Pillars. Our chore this week was a most excellent one-we got to harvest the rest of the cucumbers and tear down the plants. The kids were very pleased to get to take a few home.


I do so love polytunnels.


I also like an excuse to pass an afternoon in an army jacket, garden gloves, and a weird hat.


I covet this house and its climbing maple-looking plant.


Joseph designed, built, and painted a really fantastic lightsaber. Does this mean I don’t have to buy him one for his birthday? πŸ˜‰


My hopelessly spoilt cats–I’ve made them beds next to me at the computer. Well, it makes them so happy! And I have no shame when it comes to my kitties.

Nyssa’s new room, random things

September 22, 2008

The situation of our house is a bit odd. Our house faces sideways, with a long pie-shaped garden to the front. We look out directly onto the Lomond Hills ahead, and to the right is farmland. At the bottom of the garden is park area with a burn (stream). This is the view when you walk back up the hill a bit and look off to the right.

Looking down at the stream. Our house would be sorta behind that. There’s quite a lot of water at the moment, no doubt from earlier flooding still draining into the Eden.

I did a lot of present wrapping this week. This is Mitu inspecting Nyssa’s birthday present haul from Mum and Dad and Joseph. Dad was so excited for her to have the Lego Hospital (the purple one) that that one’s already been opened, 7 or so days short of her bithday. Sillies.

Apparently I decided that buttons are excellent wrapping accessories. I do love them, I have to admit..

Also wrapped some things to send to the States, because Cody’s had his baby girl, aww. Hers is on the left–I’m not one to stick to baby wrapping paper convention, as you can see. Big brother also needed a present, I decided. Cody also needed a copy of The Twits in Scots. Hilarity!

I’ve discovered the merits of super glue as a lazy-ass alternative to proper measuring and sewing. This is a pencil box I made for Nyssa by glueing fabric onto a microwave popcorn box. Hehe.

Nyssa’s room was basically a box room for the first few months we’ve been in the house. I decided to completely gut it out and decorate it in her chosen style before she came home from her trip with the grandparents. Most cooperatively, Elvis was dressed in Hawaiian garb on the September calendar page.

Another button-fabric-super glue creation. I love the fabric. Nyssa’s already using it, which makes me happy.

If you couldn’t guess the theme already, here’s a big smack of tiki tiki. The Ikea shell light looks sort of insanely lit, not sure why. The butterfly lights are quite nice, actually. I need to stop using my phone’s camera. I was fairly proud of deconstructing the patio parasol and wrestling it back into the required 1/4 of its original size. The floor to ceiling curtains and very, er, bold.

More of that nifty fabric. Bonus hula bear.

This is by her door, so when she comes and goes she can be reminded of what a pretty girl she is. πŸ™‚

This is quite pathetically sad. The blue and yellow smudge of feathers is from a blue tit flying at full tilt into my window this afternoon. I jumped up and saw the little guy in a pile of wings on the grass, shaking his head as though he had those cartoon stars circling above it. I ran outside to hopefully save him from a neighborhood cat-related death, but he had already flown away. Poor stoopy little thing, I can’t imagine the headache he must have.

Girl you know it’s true..

June 30, 2008

ooo..ooo..ooo..my friend is so rad. Seriously, have a look at my birthday present from K!

She has fashioned a bowl and plate and gift box out of a Milli Vanilli double album–that she had in her attic! I’m just so overwhelmed that not only did she make something so freaking cool for me herself, but she would have remembered whatever random conversation we had in which I would have indicated the influence of this band in my formative years. πŸ˜€

Lots of other random things, beginning with:


an instance of cute..


..followed by an instance of WTF McGyvering. Any ideas what this is? The yarn should be a clue. It’s a ghetto DIY yarn swift! How to make: get a camera tripod, a drill, and a gently sloping circular laundry basket. I think you can figure out the rest. Because the tripod is so short, I did also need a small end table. It works stupid well.


I told Joseph to make an ‘unimpressed’ face.

Speaking of unimpressed, I know it’s unhealthy to fan the flames of resentment that ever burn within me, but I need to vent. You’ve all been bowling, you’ve all strategically placed your shopping bags and children to help conceal from the staff the fact that you’ve refused to wear their funky-ass shoes (right? have I become too OCD?), and I know you’ve all latched on to the one special ball they have that is a reasonable weight, doesn’t pop all your fingers when you bowl, and doesn’t smell of mystery grease. Well, you can imagine my ire when the wee boy in the following photo stole my ball! Let’s forget for a moment that the combined children of our party had hoarded 20 or so on our own racks. Why did he have come and take mine?!


Just to rub it in, Turd Boy’s mum handles my ball! Later she had the gumption to come ask for one of our ramps. I plotted ways to save my ball, but alas I’m only inwardly nervy. So instead I creepily took photos of them.


My ball..

So, on to less insane things..

Or not..this cake makes me weep with squee:

Your initial impression of this tool may be as mine, that it looks fairly lame. But pick a couple colors and see what eye candy comes up. It generates a selection of flickr photos that have been labelled as ‘interesting’ that include your choices. Pretty fun. Found a good wallpaper that way anyway.

This article, posted by the Humanist Society Scotland on the positions of various political parties with regard to education, is interesting. I can sum it up fairly quickly. It covers issues such as secularism, religious practice, diversity, ethics, and creationism. Scottish Government’s position: how quickly they’ve learned to speak cop out! Greens, Liberal Democrats, and Socialists: thank you for being mostly reassuring that all in government is not insanity. Conservatives: predictably, ugh. Labour: ha, didn’t bother to comment at all. Telling? *sigh*

It’s almost 3 in the morning and I have a full day of shopping tomorrow. Not the fun kind. The ‘oh shit, this is my last free day before the move’ kind. Where we’re moving everything must be mail order or acquired with the help of public transport. That said, our new ‘shopping town’ is going to be Perth, a definite improvement I’m hoping.

Good news!

June 23, 2008

No, I’m not going to blather on about my house. This is even better! Tiger is back!

Tiger is our wonderful neighborhood cat. He sits inside Tesco to get out of the rain, he suns himself where passersby can admire him, he goes into the boutique downstairs and trods on the cash register buttons, and generally makes loveable naughtiness. Last fall we stopped seeing him and worriedly asked around. The best (and most hopeful) guess was that due to ill health his owners had switched him to a special food and he didn’t like this at all so moved on. The worst was that he had fallen victim during the time that Fife was experiencing a spate of catnapping. Several months went by and we sort of accepted that our little friend was gone–until the other day when James went into Tesco and happily found Tiger sitting inside by the carts! Today when I walked to pick the kids up from drama I saw him too, sunning himself on the pavement. I bent down to chat him up and he performed a series of adorable cuteness tummy rolls. Aw.

Last week I finally managed to get the kids to the dentist. Here I admit how awful a parent I am–aside from the little checks they had while still in primary school, they have never been. Ever. I know this ranks up there with outright neglect, but, well, yeah. Nyssa was verrrry nervous, poor bean. She let Joseph go first (how nice) and saw that it wasn’t that terrible. When it was her turn she got in the chair, and to everyone’s surprise, this is what happened:

The reason the dentist is smiling is that he had just finished stating that Nyssa is the giggliest patient he has *ever* had. If you’ve seen her get going with the giggles, you can probably imagine. The difference here is that her mouth had to stay open and she had to try to stay still. I wish I had gotten a video instead of just a picture.

So, the kids both need a wee bit of work done, nothing serious. That is, I know it’s nothing serious, but they’ll be surely freaking out the morning of. Joseph is also being referred to an orthodontist because of those little bunny teeth of his, bless.

It is still on my mind to post vacation photos and commentary. I’m just a bit tired and lazy busy. I hate to think that it wil take me until we’ve moved to do it, but it just might.

That said, I don’t use all of my spare time to pack. I spent way too much time this afternoon in my pajamas (what) sketching out a quilt design for all those sunny fat quarters I bought for Nyssa back in the States

Have to say, I bought it for the kids (*cough*), but this thing is just darned useful:

Should probably go make dinner. We’re having taco pizza, something we’ve had a berjillion times. Still, when I told Nyssa she managed to act as though it was a novelty she had never heard of, much less eaten. I hate when the kids do that! I have enough reasons to feel like a left-field wierdo already, thank you. πŸ˜›