Thursday, May 15, 2008

Living My Dream . . .

I’ve changed my mind. As usual. I was all gung-ho to write and market “Annie Investigates: The Column written by a dog about dogs for kids.” But life is happening, and I don’t want to miss a moment spending it behind the computer under a deadline. (How spoiled am I that I can just make up my mind not to try to earn a living?!)

I’ve realized that I like doing things. Lots of things. Things like de-junking, cleaning and re-arranging the girls’ bedrooms. Then planning mini-makeovers for their rooms by painting a little and sewing a lot. Projects give me a buzz. Especially completed projects. Have I ever told you that I designed and managed the making of a set of picket fence beds? True story. This picture proves it. (I tried to get Better Homes and Gardens to market the plans in their magazine, but never heard back. Their loss. Perhaps you’ll see a future post of picket fence bed plans. Would you like that? They’re fairly inexpensive. I completed them in 2000 for a cost of $75 each – and I paid someone $50 to make the end-posts. My husband, dad and brother helped out for free.)

Notice that this bed has two matching head/foot boards. That’s because Lou decided that she wanted to have a “couch” bed. And she wanted to have the two tall headboards (minus the pickets – which really made me sad) so that she could have an arm rest. Despite making Beans livid that I’d changed her bed without her notice, I think that the girls like the change. And I’m looking forward to painting and sewing up cute “couch cushions.”

I’ll post photos when they’re finished. But don’t hold your breath. I firmly believe that fabric needs aging. I choose fabric, buy it, and then let it sit for an average of 2 years before completing the intended project. But as my girls are also on board for this project, I foresee using young fabric.

I hope you don’t mind – I’m going to engage in a little bit of show and tell. You know how I said that I love projects? I made the bedspread on the picket fence bed (there is a matching set), and I made the bedspread and dust ruffle for my own bed (photo below). The fabric for my bedspread was aged about three years. Hence it turned out smashing!

Speaking of smashing, I dispatched two young roosters this morning. (Okay, it was more ‘wringing’ than ‘smashing.’) It was awful watching them die, but I told myself that my Grandmother Glenna would be proud. You might think I’m crass and violent, but let me explain. We wanted to get four baby hens this spring as future egg-layers. When my neighbor said that her son’s preschool class was hatching chicks and I could have as many as I wanted for free, I jumped at the chance. (A dollar saved is a dollar you can spend later for something better.) Knowing that the hatch would be straight run – roughly equal in males and females – we decided to get six chicks, hoping that we’d get at least three hens.

In the end we have four hens but two roosters. As I’m a penny pincher, I couldn’t stand the thought of feeding two roosters to maturity and then disposing of them. I decided that today was the day. Originally I’d intended to use the French method (Off with their heads), but remembered that wringing their necks would work too. Unsavory and detestable as the job was, I feel tough, gritty, and strongly connected to my pioneer ancestry.

In fact, I’ve decided that if more people lived with a pioneer mentality, we’d have a much healthier society. The environment wouldn’t be today’s hot-button issue. More families could afford to have just one wage-earner. Fewer spoiled-rotten children would populate our schools. All this if most people in America practiced the time-tested pioneer motto:

Use is up.
Wear it out.
Make it do.
Or do without.

Easier said than done, of course.

1 comment:

Flashlight Girl said...

You are a project DIVA! Currently I'm reusing-- sewing holey pants into shorts for my boys this summer. It is the true sign that warm weather is here, and the boys are whining for more shorts, AND my funds are limited. I am glad I know how to do this, but would love to know how to make the block quilt on your bed!! Please include patterns/instructions in a future post or email me!