Thursday, January 26, 2017

I Like Thursday: Guinea Pigs

If you've read my blog at all, you know that I like guinea pigs.  (If you haven't, you'll figure it out from all the links and videos I have in this post!)

My mom was allergic to cats; Dad disliked dogs.  So I was never going to have a "normal" pet when I was a kid.  The pocket pets were all cute and I thought rabbits were neat - but guinea pigs talk to you.  It was the first thing I liked about guinea pigs, and from that point I was sold.

I like that they have conversations.  Boy, can they talk!  They burble, they complain, they speak their mind.  Eclair once told the entire vet's office at the top of her lungs that she was being manhandled and it wasn't to her liking.  Here's a few of the sounds I've captured over the years:

Monday, January 23, 2017

Snow Ball

My legs are still stiff from dancing the better part of eight hours straight on Saturday.  I can't believe my poor old half-sole shoes survived.  Whee!

I think it's been five years since I last attended the Peterborough Snow Ball.  It's a marathon contra dance - 12 hours of live music and dancing split between four callers and bands.  I made it through three of them (callers/bands, not hours) before my feet gave out (I got kicked and stepped on in the last set - an unfortunate combination of others' enthusiasm and my inability to move out of the way).  My pedometer clocked over six miles and it's notorious for not tracking dancing very well.  I'm figuring I covered at least twice that distance.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Nothing but Nose

I have a lot of short-strand hay, which doesn't stay put in the hay racks.  However, it's great for stuffing handfuls into a paper lunch bag.  Such happiness!  I've lost sight of Wedgwood twice now (OMG, she's not in the cage - where is she?!?!) to discover her buried in the paper bag.  She actually fits!  I'm amazed.

Wedgwood focuses on the hay, but Boadicea enjoys punching holes in the bag.  Then I walked by the cage to discover Wedgie out in the open, but no Boadi.  Where could she be?

Wait - is that a nose?

While I'm talking about Boadicea, how about a health update?  The crying and spotting have stopped.  It's been days since I've heard a whimper.  Before that, it had been less frequent, happening only once every day or two.  While doing a food journal for her, I suspected the pain was gut related.  On a whim I started giving her some of my daily probiotic.  Either that did the trick, or perhaps it was an illness that she got over.  Either way, I hope I haven't jinxed myself (and her).  I'm just glad she's feeling better.

She's lost a bit of weight, but is still heavier than when we adopted her.  I'm still getting used to seeing the scale under 1kg.  As long as she stays this weight and keeps her loafy figure, it's all good.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Footwear Upgrades

Quilting has been on hold as I work on some other projects.

I have a pair of rag wool socks I wear around the house.  I love them, but they're finally starting to fall apart, even after adding leather to the bottoms.

I found a beautiful a pair of hand knit ankle socks on Etsy.  Not wanting to wear out the toes and heels of these, I spent some time adding leather bottoms.  They're really comfy - I hope to have them for a long time.

Monday, January 16, 2017


A new box of hay arrived earlier in the month.  The top part of the box has lots of short-strand hay, which easily pops out of the hay rack and hay-band I use.  Boadicea and Wedgwood have been dumping the hay all over the top level of the cage.  (It sometimes accumulates on the second level as well.)

It's a mess, but I'm the only one that has a problem with it.  I found Wedgwood happily ensconced in the middle of the pile.  In fact, it looks like she tried to bury herself in it.  Ah, if only it was a deeper pile.

Wedgwood was so happy and relaxed at where she was, she didn't even blink as I hovered over her to snap photos. 

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Purple Presents

I never know what I'll come home with whenever I meet up with family.  It can be food, books, newspaper clippings.  I'm often giving them stuff, too.  (There's a table near the front door that often holds an item or two awaiting the next get-together.)  In December I attended the family Cookie Party anticipating bags of cookies, but that's not all I ended up with.  Bonus!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Casserole Clasp

I made a casserole carrier for myself several years ago.  Love it.  It was designed for a 9x13" pan but my 10" springform pan fits great, too.  The carrier gets a fair amount of use.  I've been using a twist-tie to keep it closed.  It's does the trick, but I wanted something a little stronger and a little prettier.

So I made myself a closure from a bit of fabric, a scrap of batting and a snap.  It slips through one handle and remains attached to that.  To secure the cozy, the end wraps around the other handle and snaps to itself.  I have instructions on making the casserole cozy - this post is to go with it.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Out on a Limb

I'm starting to lay out my next project - an applique tree.  I have a bunch of the leaves ready to go, but I'm struggling with the tree itself.  First one was too small.  This one is too big.  At least I have a ton of brown packing paper to cut up to see what I like.  I decided the original color I wanted for the bark is too red.  I love the fabric, but it's not going to work.  So I'm down to a coffee brown or an orangy brown.  (I have them both on the trunk.)  I'm hoping there's enough of whichever I pick to be able to cut the trunk and branches all as one piece.

I see a lot more drawing and cutting in my future before I get to sew.

Sharing with Linky Tuesday and Scraptastic Tuesday.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Veggie Wine Charms

I kept the gold tone memory wire and made another set of wine charms.  This time, it's vegetables.  I'm sure the pigs would approve:  eggplant, bell peppers, pea pods, carrots, lettuce and corn.

My first ear of corn was too small, but I should have stuck with it - it grows once the husk gets added.  I like the bell peppers because they're so colorful.  Hard to say which is my favorite.  I really like how the set turned out!

Thursday, January 5, 2017

I Like Thursday: The Tea Edition

I've been loving (liking?) the I Like Thursday posts over at Not Afraid of Color.  Every week I read them and think:  I need to do this.  But there's so much other stuff I'm doing.  Besides, what would I write about?  I sat there, mug of tea at hand... admiring my mug... and suddenly this post pretty much wrote itself.

1.  I like my guinea pig mug.  I happened upon a crazy sale for a design-it-yourself 15oz mug (less than $10, including shipping).  I selected a handful of guinea pig photos and voila!  One of my favorite mugs.

2.  I like (and cherish) my teacups.  I inherited most of them from my grandmother.  She'd be so happy that I am using them.  One has cracked so I can't use it anymore, another mysteriously broke.  I've been given a few more as word gets out about my collection.  Many of the cups have stories - where they came from, why they were bought.  Always a pleasure to use when I host a tea.

3.  I like my loose leaf tea from Virtuous Teas.  It's a great little hole-in-the-wall shop and the staff are always so nice.  I received a gift certificate to this place nearly 20 years ago - and have been going there ever since.  I've moved further away, so I don't get to visit so often; I buy online.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Dope on a Slope

I walked by the cage the other day and found Boadicea like this - just sitting there, staring off into space.  Made me think of me of Halfway Down by A.A. Milne.

It's difficult being a pig of very little brain.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Guinea Pigs and Carrots

When I made the sets of guinea pig earrings I bought several kinds of studs and hooks.  I had ideas on what I wanted to make for dangle earrings.  However, my fingers couldn't seem to create what I dreamed up.  I love wearing hook earrings, but I seemed to be better at making stud earrings.

I was about to give up making a dangle guinea pig earring until I hit upon the idea to have them holding something.  Carrots seemed appropriate.  I know Boadicea and Wedgwood would agree. 

They're fairly heavy - at least compared to the little earrings I usually wear.  At nearly an inch tall, there's a good chunk of Sculpey in them.  I made two attempts at a smaller version, but the guinea pigs refused come together until they were this size.  It's funny how artwork can take on a life of its own:  they were this size or not at all.  I wasn't going to win this argument.

I am simply happy to have finally made a pair like this after so many failed attempts.