Sunday, August 20, 2017

A Complete Waste of Time

I spent the morning driving 75 screws into my subflooring. There was no appreciable difference in the creaking.

75 screws and IT STILL CREAKS.

I am so frustrated! I don't know what else to do except have the subflooring replaced. It will be at least two weeks before I can do that because I have meetings and events at work. So I get to live with bare plywood floors while my lovely new flooring sits in boxes. UGH.

The silver lining is my new washer and dryer are working well.

And I'm looking forward to the solar eclipse tomorrow. It will be more than 90% of totality here. If there aren't too many clouds, it should be a spectacular sight! :)

Friday, August 18, 2017

Nook Does Not Like Change

My new washer and dryer have been delivered. The delivery guys seemed intrigued by the damask paper on the old machines. ;)

I have been catching up on laundry while pulling up the old flooring.

All this activity has traumatized my fearful little dog Nook. She is scared of the new sounds coming from the laundry closet, and she is scared of the new floor. I carried her outside to go potty, and she wouldn't come back in the house. I had to carry her inside. I set her down on a rug, and she wouldn't leave the safety of her "island."


Nook does not handle change well. New = terrifying.

And lest anyone worry... no, I didn't leave her stranded there. After I took the picture, I carried her into the bedroom, where everything is reassuringly unchanged. She is once again ensconced in her nook, where she feels safe.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Up Next...

Or perhaps I should say "down next"... flooring! I came home this evening with a car full of new flooring. :D

After I pull up the old flooring, I will fix the INCREDIBLY ANNOYING creaking subfloor. If I can't fix it, I will have it replaced. One way or another, I will have a silent floor!

Then I can install the new, dark brown/black flooring. It will replace a light oak color flooring and is going to completely change the look of the rooms! :)

I will also be getting a new washer and dryer, though that was not a planned purchase. A week ago, I smelled something burning. After sniffing all around the house, I found the smell was coming from the washer. The motor had burned out. I had actually been expecting the dryer to die because it's been making squeaking noises for a while... but the washer went first.

They're both pretty old. I got them free in 2009 from a coworker who was getting new machines. I paid $0 and got eight years of use... can't complain about that!

The new ones are certainly not free, but I got lucky on the timing. I had received my annual bonus just two days before the washer's final spin cycle.

Somewhere in the midst of installing flooring and catching up on laundry, I need to work on my craft-along project! As a reminder, the theme for August is Food and Beverage. Details HERE.



Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Cabinet Project in Progress 3

Plywood wrapped with ironing board cover.

Legs added to support slide-out ironing board.


Saturday, August 12, 2017

Friday, August 11, 2017

Bats in the Belfry Shirt

Just a quick post to share my awesome new t-shirt. The color appears washed out from the fluorescent lighting, but look at that fabulous bat design! :D


It's a Bats in the Belfry graphic t-shirt from Redbubble. I was hesitant to order it because the front panel is polyester, and I'm a cotton gal. But the back and sleeves are cotton, so I took a chance.

I'm glad I did because I love the shirt! The front panel is very soft; none of the stiffness that you sometimes get with printed t-shirts. The shirt is a typical men's/unisex straight shape, but the slim fit keeps it from looking horribly boxy.

Ordering from Redbubble was easy, and shipping was pretty fast. They have a plethora of different bat designs, and I'm sure I will order from them again.

This is not a sponsored post. I just really love my new shirt.. :)

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Hair Project Completed

I wanted to show the final result of dyeing my regrowth, but I cannot get a picture to accurately depict the color. No matter what I try, no matter which settings I use, my camera INSISTS on making my hair look blue.

This one is more accurate:

The true color is close to this:


Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Hair Project in Progress

Some in-progress pictures are more ridiculous than others. XD

Tonight's project is dyeing my regrowth, and the post-bleach result is pastel silliness.

I've been successful at dyeing my bangs purple. :) Though my natural color is a medium/dark brown, it bleaches out easily. Bleach with 20 volume developer takes it to yellow in 15-20 minutes. And I'm closing in on a dye that produces the shade of purple I want. Arctic Fox Purple Rain is just about the right color.

Most of my hair is still black. After the series of salon disasters, I have given up on changing it to purple. I think I'm going to wait until the regrowth is a few inches, and then try for a purple/black ombre.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Cabinet Project in Progress

Thanks for the comments on my last post. In-progress posts it is! I'll start by posting here on the blog. I typically take project photos with my camera, not phone, and getting them on Instagram is a cumbersome process.

Toe kicks added to bottom of cabinets
Cabinets connected
Supports added to top of cabinets

Supports for what? That will be the ambitious part of this project. More to come!


Sunday, August 6, 2017

A New Project Begins!

I am getting started on an ambitious new project! I'm excited! :D


And on the topic of new projects, I've been pondering...
I usually wait until a project is finished before posting about it. That means more substantive posts, but fewer of them. Would you be interested in in-progress posts? Would you want to see them here on the blog, or on Instagram with the finished project on the blog?


Friday, August 4, 2017

Disguising the Electronics

Electronics are useful but typically not very decorative. My speakers, modem, and router are black and thus not overly conspicuous on my black furniture. Nonetheless, I decided to make disguises for them. Even electronics like to play dress-up, right? ;)

To dress the subwoofer (Can I just say... I love that word! My dorky brain can't help but think of a subwoofer as a less dominant dog. In my house, Indigo is the woofer and Nook is the subwoofer. WOW, I am corny!)

Anyway, to make a disguise for the subwoofer, I used a black cardboard box...

And a photo frame from the dollar store.

I removed the back and the glass from the photo frame. Using acrylic craft paint, I painted the frame black and set it aside to dry. I centered the back on top of the box lid and traced around it with a pencil.

Following the pencil lines, I cut out the rectangle from the box lid.

I turned the lid over bottom side up. To cover the hole, I used a piece of black lace. I duct taped it into place. Duct tape isn't very classy, but it's MUCH easier than trying to glue lace.

I turned the lid back over so the top side was up.

I added the frame. It has little metal tabs which one would normally bend inward to hold the back in the frame. I bent them outward instead, and they worked perfectly to hold the frame in the opening.

Then I turned my attention to the box itself. The box was shallower than the subwoofer. This wasn't really a problem, though, as I didn't need to enclose the entire subwoofer. I simply cut a hole in the bottom of the box large enough for it fit through.

I slid the box over the subwoofer with the box's bottom toward the back and the top toward the front.

And placed the lid on the box.

The router generates some heat, so I did not want to enclose it in a cardboard box. Instead, I placed it in a magazine holder made of filigree metal.

I turned the holder backward so the tall "front" hides the router while the much shorter "back" allows the cords to exit. I used a second magazine holder for the modem.

For the speakers, I made covers that double as candle holders (details HERE). The disguises were complete!

After looking at the pictures... I think I'll shift things so the box is in the center with a magazine holder on either side. I like symmetry.

EDIT:
I made the change. Symmetry!


Thursday, August 3, 2017

Crow Two

I couldn't resist stopping by Michael's for another model crow.

I also got a little spooky house. With a glittery roof. So much of the Halloween stuff at Michael's is covered in glitter!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Lucky Find at Michael's

I've been looking for a (relatively) realistic model crow or raven for ages. What I found were lightweight (foam?) bird-like shapes with glued-on feathers... and glue on the feathers. Big globs of glue. I wasn't expecting heirloom quality, but these looked super cheap.

My luck finally changed! I was thrilled to find decent model crows at Michael's. They are approximately life size, and there are two poses - one with wings folded, one with wings extended. I bought the latter and I think I'll go back for the other.

I don't see them on Michael's website, so they may be in-store only. The cost was $14, I think; I paid half thanks to a 50% off coupon.

Also... I've had several people ask me where I got my spooky tree with purple LEDs.


Michael's currently has a nearly identical tree in store now. It's actually even better because it has bats! :D It's $90, but you can get a 50% off coupon from Michael's website.

Craft Along with GIY: August 2017



During August, I will work on a craft project for the monthly theme. Around August 29, I will post my completed project. You can share a link to your project on that post or at any time during the month on this post. On August 31, I will compile the links on the Craft Along with GIY page.

To participate:
1.  If you're a blogger, add the Craft Along with GIY icon to your post. Link the icon to this page:
http://gothityourself.blogspot.com/p/craft-along-with-giy.html

2.  On either this theme announcement post or my completed project post, leave a comment with a link to your project. You can link to your blog, webpage, Instagram, or anywhere else readers can see it.

Your project can be big or small. It can be in any style, goth or otherwise. The fun is in the crafting! :)

The theme for August is Food and Beverage. As always, you can interpret this broadly:

  • paint a bistro table for your patio
  • make a coffee-themed brooch or earrings
  • sew a dress from cherry print fabric
  • paint a still life of fruit
  • DIY a cookbook holder
  • make a centerpiece for your dining table
  • decorate mugs or plates
  • or literally craft food and share the recipe 

Or anything else related to food or beverage. Creativity is encouraged!

    Sunday, July 30, 2017

    Craft Along with GIY: It Takes Two


    The theme for the June/July Craft Along with GIY is It Takes Two. For my project, I made a pair of speaker covers that double as candle holders.

    First step was to find a box of appropriate size to fit over the speakers. I wanted a rounded shape, so I opted for an oatmeal canister made of cardboard.

    I removed the label, turned the canister upside down, and cut a notch in the back for the speaker wires to go through.

    Next, I cut a window for the speaker cones. Then I painted the top and bottom edge of the canister black.

    I wrapped the canister with black paper. To uncover the window opening, I slit the paper in an X shape from corner to corner.

    Then I folded the paper into the opening and taped it to the inside of the canister.

    I decided to use lace to cover the window. This would visually disguise the speaker cones but not block the sound. Using lace and jacquard, I sewed a band to encircle the canister.

    I wrapped the band around the canister and pinned it in the back.

    I placed the covers over the speakers and added pillar candles.

    To share your Craft Along with GIY project:
    1.  Add the Craft Along with GIY icon to your blog post. Link the icon to this page:
    http://gothityourself.blogspot.com/p/craft-along-with-giy.html
    2.  Leave a comment with a link to your project. If you're not a blogger, you can link to your webpage, Instagram, or anywhere else readers can see it. (Please link directly to the project page.)

    I will compile the links on the Craft Along with GIY page.

    Tuesday, July 18, 2017

    Princess Bane and the Frozen Peas

    I haven't abandoned my blog.

    I haven't been doing much lately because the summer heat drains my energy. I am the opposite of solar powered. I do not tolerate heat well. It makes me feel cranky and gives me a headache. I AM TIRED OF BEING HOT.

    Last week was busy at work. This week will be busy, too... but I might as well be at the office because my home air conditioner has gone kaput. I want to break down and cry. Of everything in my house that could break, the air conditioner is the worst for me.

    No heat? Gives me a chance to wear a sweater.
    No hot water? I can heat water on the stove.
    No running water? I know how to flush a toilet with a 1/2 gallon bucket.
    No internet? I can read books.
    No electricity? I can read books by flashlight or candlelight.

    No air conditioning? I'm miserable. Sweaty, gross, cranky and miserable.

    So I sit here in front of the fan with a cold towel around my neck and another on my legs. To help cool my core, I'm using a package of frozen peas as a lap desk. Aaaaah... cool and refreshing.

    I wish I had 100 packages of frozen peas to sleep on.

    That's how this princess likes her peas: frozen and on top of the mattress.

    Yeah... I think my brain has overheated.

    Friday, July 7, 2017

    Interlude: Dogs

    I hoped to have a project post up by now... but the project turned out to be a total failure. :( I already have a couple more projects in the works. With luck, they will be successful and I'll post about them soon.

    I'll fill the interlude by rambling ad nauseum about my dogs.

    As many of you know, I have two small dogs. Indigo is a brown and tan Miniature Pinscher. Nook is a black Chihuahua mix. They are similar in size and appearance, and they're pretty close in age.

    They both love warmth. Nook's favorite place is "Nook's nook," a kitchen cabinet turned dog bed outfitted with a blanket and heating pad. Indigo will sometimes join her there. They both like to burrow beneath the blanket.

    And that is where the similarities end. Their personalities are completely different. Indigo wants nothing more than to be with her human (me) and is generally indifferent to everything else, even food. Nook has more typical dog interests, including toys and food.

    Indigo is nearly silent; Nook barks, play-growls, and makes all kinds of funny sounds; she even quietly barks in her sleep, which is hilarious. Indigo is clever; Nook is... well, not the brightest bulb in the chandelier. Indigo is bold and fearless; Nook is afraid of everything.

    In almost every situation, their actions or reactions are totally different.

    For example... I let them out into the back yard.
    Indigo quietly stands on the patio.
    Nook madly dashes around the yard for no apparent reason. (Sorry for the loud wind noise on this video!)
    video


    I go inside and pull the door almost closed.
    Indigo waits quietly on the doorstep until I notice her and open the door to let her in.
    Nook enthusiastically scratches open the door and bursts in like a tiny SWAT team.

    I sit on the sofa.
    Indigo lies down on my lap or right next to me, and she demands belly rubs.
    Nook chews on her toy.

    I open the laundry closet door.
    Indigo runs over to see if there are warm towels coming out of the dryer.
    Nook runs to her kennel to hide from the terrifying monsters who live behind the door.

    I put the basket of towels on the floor.
    Indigo jumps into the basket the instant I set it down.
    Nook eyeballs the scary basket from the safety of her kennel.

    I offer each dog a treat.
    Indigo sniffs at it... considers it... sniffs at it again... and if she decides to eat it, plucks it gingerly from my fingers and carries it over to the sofa to nibble at it.
    Nook grabs it and swallows it whole without even pausing to sniff what it is. (After all, if I'm offering it, it must be edible, right?)

    I give them dinner.
    Indigo spends three minutes "burying" her food before deciding whether to eat. If she eats, she daintily selects one piece at a time.
    Nook gulps down her food in a few seconds, no chewing required. (She now has a slow feeder bowl so dinner lasts about four minutes instead of four seconds.)
    video

    I give them a bath.
    Indigo looks indignant and tries to jump out of the tub.
    Nook looks confused and tries to eat the shampoo lather.

    I go into the bedroom.
    Indigo springs lightly onto the bed as if gravity doesn't apply to her. She sits quietly, waiting for me to sit down so I'll have a lap for her to lie down on.
    Nook lines her body up parallel to the bed.. looks up and down a few times to gauge the distance... then leaps sideways onto the bed. Then she stretches out, ready to play.
    video

    Two dogs with vastly different personalities... but I adore them both. Indigo is sweet, cuddly and affectionate. Nook is cute, playful, and hilarious. I may not matter to a single person, but I am Indigo's entire world. I may be melancholy, but Nook's goofy cheerfulness can always make me laugh.

    Bringing these two little ladies home from the shelter was far and away the best decision I have ever made. Hooray for rescue pets! :D

    Wednesday, June 28, 2017

    Returning Soon

    Hello, all! Just checking in to say I will return soon. I hope to get back to project posts in a few days.

    If you are participating in Craft Along with GIY, you can leave a comment with your project link on the theme announcement post or on this post at any time. June's It Takes Two theme will continue into July.

    As always, I appreciate all your support and kind comments. Thanks for sticking with me!

    ADDED: Because of spam comments I have been receiving lately, I have turned on word verification and comment moderation. Sorry... I know that makes commenting more of a hassle. I hope it will be a very short-term situation.

    Wednesday, June 7, 2017

    Random Pictures and Thoughts

    Just a few random pictures and thoughts...

    I don't typically take pictures of my food, but these strawberries were the most beautiful I've ever seen. Almost too pretty to eat. Almost. ;) They were deeeelicious.

    The dogs are enjoying the new landscaping, especially the pea gravel which gets the full intensity of the sun well into the afternoon. Indigo in particular loves the heat. She basks in the sun, and when she comes inside, her fur is practically hot to the touch. Despite this, I have never seen her pant.

    As usual, Nook saw that Indigo had a good idea and copied her actions, joining her in the basking. With those two, it's easy to tell who is the brain and who is the brawn. :) Nook is adorable, but not the smartest dog. Whatever her Chihuahua heritage is mixed with, it's not Border Collie. ;)

    I enjoy the new landscaping, too, though I'm dismayed at the number of weeds that have sprouted up due to the rainy spring we've been having. Fortunately, rainy weather means overcast days, so I've been able to get outside and keep up with the weeding.

    Unfortunately, weeding gets me up close and personal with my yard's insect and arachnid population... estimated at about fifty-two gazillion. :P Ants, spiders, grasshoppers, pillbugs, mosquitoes, and tiny black creatures I call Leaping Speckbugs.

    What's interesting are the vast size and temperament differences between Colorado bugs and the bugs in Georgia, where I grew up. Colorado bugs are tiny and docile compared to the huge, aggressive monsters in Georgia. Colorado grasshoppers are about the size of a pinky fingernail; Georgia grasshoppers are as big as a whole thumb. Colorado ants are teeny and will move away from you; Georgia fire ants are enormous and will rally 100,000 of their closest friends to assault you with painful stings. And while mosquitoes in both places are out for blood, you can see the Georgia mosquitoes coming. Colorado mosquitoes are so small, I first thought they were gnats.

    However, I did find evidence of one big Colorado insect - the molted exoskeleton of a large dragonfly.

    I made a short video of a nighttime lightning storm, from which I captured some cool images.


    That's all for now. I haven't been feeling well, so haven't done much DIY lately. I hope that changes soon and I can get back to posting projects.