Sunday, December 14, 2014

Curtains and baby surgery...

Watching another one of those financial videos inspired me to ask about my auto insurance yet again.  This time, this year, I had very specific questions regarding low mileage policy options, line item changes, and eligibility to be re-rated (a new policy written).  The person in the office with whom I have worked for the past four years is leaving, but her replacement treated me far better than in my last two years of my asking how to lower my insurance.

Bottom line, my coverage is being increased to more a comprehensive level (I had dropped below recommended levels to save money in previous years), my deductibles have been lowered from $500 to $250, and my policy price dropped $166!!!

It is far too easy to take the path of least resistance, to not go through the effort to call about all of your policies and all of your plans on a regular basis to check to see you are getting the best rate or paying for only what is needful.  I think this is especially true when you have tried in years past and not gotten anywhere.  But I think it is important to be a good steward of the resources you have.

[And to forgive yourself when you are not ... like buying really impractical (unbelievably tasty) cheddar cheese because it was sitting out for tasting when you went to get your natural sea salt at the specialty food store.]

On another positive financial note, I am getting a sewing machine!  [I still fear I won't be able to figure it out.]  You see, I called my interior designer mother because I determined that I would first have a round of Amos' baby surgery and start tackling those curtains.  I measured the windows and then called.  I called because I wanted to know what length I should make the curtain on the door to the airing porch.

[Is not the whole draping extra fabric thing just aesthetically horrid??]

You see, in the solarium, the curtains in there all spill to the floor. I do not care for that, but knowing that they are serviceable, not unattractive curtains, I have never had a single thought of replacing them.  However, I did want to properly size the curtain on the door window.  I just did not know if I should make the curtain for the door window longish or have at the bottom of the window, as I did on the back door and basement entrance door.

My mother, somehow, knew about my thoughts about the sewing machine (I don't remember telling her them) and asked if I was going to get it.  I said that I decided against spending the money and was going to try and sew the five curtains by hand.

Five?  What about all the long curtains in the solarium.
Uhm, nope.  I'm fine with them.
But I loathe how they look in the lovely home you've made.
Me, too, but that's like another twelve curtains to sew.
What if I buy you the sewing machine?

So, if I promise to shorten all the solarium curtains to just off the floor and promise to fit the curtains in the guest "suite" windows first (more unattractive drapage seen in the photo above), my mother will happily fund a sewing machine.  I just need to go buy bobbins and thread.  And learn how to use it.

[Ah, how hard temptation struck at that moment, thinking about having a small table and chairs out on the airing porch!!]

The too-long curtains in the servants' quarters bother me the most, because I see them more.  However, I made the promise.

When I moved here, other than in the solarium, every single window in the house had a different curtain, even windows in the same room.  It was as if the seller went to a rummage sale and grabbed a bunch of curtains out of a bin for $1.  They were all externally mounted, too, for which I also care not unless you have a true drapery accent to a window.

My attitude toward curtains is less-is-more.  So, I've had the same collection of lace shears since college.  All of them originally were full-length panels.  Over the years, many have been shortened to fit the windows of places where I have lived.  Any time a long panel was shortened, I kept the piece cut off to use on another potential window.  Sorting through all my lace shears after I moved here, I was able to find enough for all the windows except for the guest suite and then promptly went out and bought additional tension rods so I could hang them all.  [If you need any external mount curtain rods, I still have a few dozen in the basement.]

For the basement windows, remnant pieces of panels were pinned to the rod for over two years.  Last year, I sewed rod pockets for them by hand.  UGH.  And I ignored the rest of the un-fitted curtains.  All but one are regular fabric.  [Lace shears are great for hiding crooked hand stitches.]  Now.  Now!  My interior designer mother, who has surprisingly held her tongue about the sad state of the upstairs windows, will be happy.  Me, too.

Once the sewing machine arrives.
And I figure out how to use it.

Despite all the down-sizing I have done, I saved most of those horrid curtains to use as drop cloths for painting.  A few were tossed after said use, but I still have some folded in a box on the basement shelving.  How convenient is it that I have plenty of free practice material??

After discovering that presentation, I watched it many, many, many times and made that page of notes in case others want to watch it, too.  If you noticed the timestamp of the post, I essentially lost myself in the study of lamenting as worship all night long.  So, yesterday, I was rather tuckered out.

I did fetch milk.  Then, since Joann Fabric is conveniently next door to Walmart, I ventured in there to learn all about thread and bobbins.  The two saleswomen were very patient and a cadre of old biddies who were listening to all my many fears of failure gave copious amounts of advice on learning to sew.  Obviously, I will not remember what they said.  But two offered coupons to me so that I could also get the scissors that I did not know I needed.  The saleswomen picked them out for me.  Apparently, pretty scissors help with sewing.  Free pretty scissors.  All those women really were kind and supportive.

Bleary eyed, after coming back home and starting some laundry, I did little else before falling asleep late afternoon.  Amos was rather accommodating about staying in bed from then until this morning, save for trips to tend to bodily needs and fetch fresh ice packs.

I find it ... odd ... that I have to parts of my body that begin to seriously malfunction when I am over-exhausted.  The muscles (I think they are the culprit) in my right leg begin to fail and my right knee becomes ... loose.  My upper and lower leg bits do not always move in sync and there is great, great pain.  Now, my knee is not the only signal that I am in trouble.  My right thumb begins to hurt, at the base of it on the top.  The pain was so bad that I was astounded at the difference between morning and evening.  Now that I slept 12 hours and napped three, my thumb and knee are back to normal.

Weird, eh?

Having caught up on the missed sleep, today I girded my loins, got out my grandmother's sewing box, and took care of all the babies that I had relegated to the top of the bookcase in the living room to keep them safe from further harm.

This past week, Leslie bought Amos a new baby for his birthday.  I cannot figure out if it is Elf Baby or Christmas Tree Baby or some combination thereof.

Amos has kept his new baby close, dragging it about the house and tucking that monstrosity beneath him.  Despite having such comfort close to him, my beloved fluff ball hounded me every single second I sewed on his other babies.

It is very, very, very difficult to replace squeakers and sew up holes when you have a puppy dog nosing and licking and generally trying to rescue his baby the entire time you are working on it.  After repair work that took twice as long as it should, Amos now has his beloved Gorilla Baby, Heart Baby, Goblin Baby, Reindeer Baby, Raccoon Baby, and Bumblebee Baby back in his loving care.

Oh, the things puppy mommas do for their fluff balls!

On a completely un-related note, I found a chicken recipe I am just dying to try.  However, it requires bourbon.  Despite all the different types of alcohol I have purchased for recipes, I still do not have bourbon in my bottle collection.  What is bourbon?  How do you go about selecting a brand???

Chicken with bourbon mustard sauce ... doesn't the thought of that just make your mouth water???

1 comment:

Mary Jack said...

Wishing you the best when you start learning to sew! :)