The Last Minute Costume

Finally getting a chance to post about my oldest son, J’s, Halloween costume.  He had a pretty clear idea early on what he wanted, so I only needed a few more bits to make it happen on Halloween day.

After I finished the little guy’s Ninjago outfit there was not a lot of time left. So I had to abandon my earlier ideas on how to finish the cape that J wanted.

He was wearing a black micro fleece pull-over and pants for the first layer, so my big concern was that he be visible in the dark. Granted our small town doesn’t have a lot of traffic, but I consider it betting against the odds to send anyone out at night in dark clothing.

He really like the sparkly green fabric that looked a bit like reptile scales. I was thrilled because the metallic reflective nature of it would increase his visibility.

So I did some quick measurements for length and width, then cut out basically a U shape with the top edge of the U being the selvage on one side.  Sat down at my serger and created a blind hem style casing along the selvage edge. Threaded a 14″ length of 1/4″ elastic thru the casing and tied a knot.

Presto, first layer of cape. And a scrap off one of the corners from the remnant as his  “eye patch” since the fabric is fairly sheer.

J also wanted an over layer made from the holey fuzzy black fabric I had bought.  At this point I’m down to about 35 minutes til they need to leave for the Halloween party.

Grab the fabric, black corded elastic, toggle closure, and the ever handy safety pins.

There are 2 yards of fabric and J is only 4 1/2 feet tall. Okay, fold it nearly in half.  Run the elastic thru the holes in the fabric (handy that). Gather up fabric on elastic and slide toggle into place. Knot ends of elastic so the toggle doesn’t fall off.

Place the double layered cape on J over the green sparkly cape.

Pull up top layer and drape about head and neck to create a hood. Use safety pins to secure into place.

With 10 minutes to spare, he is good to go. Mom is a hero again. Yay!

“You are the best Mom ever!” – My payment.

My husband took the boys out to the party and then trick-or-treating whilst I stayed home to greet goblins at our door. He said J wore the entire cape for the party, but the top black layer was too heavy (hey that is 2 yards of fabric) once he was outside.

So he was even more visible, because the green cape was on the outermost layer of his costume. That works!

Surprise Package!

One of the fun thing about being a designer/blogger is that every once-in-awhile yarn company’s will send a box of yarn and other goodies.  This is a great chance to review new products and swatch with new yarns to see if they will fit in with one of my designs.  I knew that Red Heart was sending me such a box, but had been so busy with work and family stuff it had slipped my mind.

So I was very pleasantly surprised today when the FedEx truck came and it was a box for me (instead of my beloved, who gets lots of boxes for work stuff).

Inside was this wonderful tote bag full of all kinds of fun stuff.

There are knitting stitch markers, chain for counting off stitches or rows, yarn cutter, knitting needles, crochet hooks, new issue of Crochet Today magazine, Susan Bates and Red Heart product catalogs and…..

Yarn!

More about all this fun stuff once I get caught up on some patterns.

Five Things

Often times it seems so complicated when thinking about how to keep healthy, but there are really only 5 things that you need to remember to maintain good health and avoid injury.

Listen to Your Body

Our bodies are always communicating with us if we listen. Discomfort is the body’s first voice. It is only after you ignore Discomfort  for far too long that your body resorts to Pain (its version of shouting). Of course Pain hits us at many levels…basicially the sooner you listen to your body and make changes the less Pain you have to suffer thru.

Breathe

Respiration is the one thing you really can’t stop doing. But so many of us breathe shallowly and our lungs never fully inflate. Breathing deeply through your nose sets up a wonderful chemical chain reaction that allows your body to relax and your muscles to recover from their hard work. It also promotes good digestion.

Hydrate

Our bodies are made up of approximately 98% water. I once had a client explain to me this was the reason we don’t need to drink lots of water. Quite the contrary! We lose water when we breathe, thru sweating and thru our gastrointestinal tract. If that water is not replaced frequently we can quickly find ourselves headed toward dehydration. Even mild dehydration can make you more vulnerable to injury. So be sure to drink at least 10-12 eight ounce glasses of water each day, and more if you are sweating heavily or engaged in strenuous physical activity.

Eat Well

We truly are what we eat. Our food provides the building blocks for repairs and for the energy to run all our systems.  Eating healthy, nutrient-rich foods gives you the raw materials for recovering from mild injury and preventing further injury.

Sleep

If you’ve ever experienced insomnia or staying up too late and having to function the next day, you know how a lack of sleep can impact your brain. But are you aware of how much it impacts your muscles and overall health? When our energy levels are at the low-end we are more at risk for injury. Most people need a minimum of 8 hours solid sleep to function at their best. Anything less than that is generally not adequate.

So, pay attention to these five things and you’ll have more injury-free time to enjoy crafting and the other pleasures of life.

As we Wait

Well, today is all about Voting, then the long wait to see how the various ballot issues and races turn out. I’m crocheting away on super secret projects between driving folks to the polls, so can’t share pics of those.  Instead it is time for some doggie pics, cause I think she is super cute, and we all could use a bit of comic relief right now.

My sweet girl, Kenna taking a nap. Notice how the trim is missing on some of her cushion? That is because she can be Ms. Destructo at times.

Pink paw pads on a white footsie (wow! somebody needs a pedicure).

Early morning belly rubs.

Pretty pink spot on her chin (it’s a doggie beauty mark).

#1 reason it is hard to take her picture….she wants to “get” the camera.

A friend mentioned that I need a “puppy” category. I went with “Doggies” though, since I foster more than puppies and technically Kenna isn’t a puppy anymore (though she will always be my puppy, sort of like how my sons are still my babies).

Happy Election Day dear readers, I hope you’ve had a chance to vote and are now entertaining yourselves until the results come in.

Time to Vote

Okay folks, I generally try to stick to crafting and health subjects in this blog. But today, I’m going a bit off-road.

This coming Tuesday, November 6th is Election Day.  Over the years many of our country’s men and women have made the ultimate sacrifice to guarantee that our country’s freedoms are safe, one of those being the right to vote.

In 1920 women were finally granted that same franchise with the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution.  Personally I was able to vote for the first time in 1981 and voted in my first Presidential election in 1984.

If you live in one of the “Battleground States” or an area that has a hotly contested race for a local, state or federal seat you are very likely utterly sick of political ads. I sympathise, I live in Colorado and have taken to not watching regular TV.  Everything is recorded on my DVR so that I can fast forward thru the ads.

But no matter your annoyances with the ads, it is very important to go to your local polling place and cast that ballot. Voting is more than a right, it is a privilege and a responsibility.

It is an important way to make your voice heard in how government works, from your local towns and counties to the national stage.  It affects our lives in myriad ways, even ones that might seem small, from the quality of education for our children to the pot-holes in our roads.

Vote in order to be sure that our government is one that is “of the people, for the people” and not just the people with the most money or the corporations that are attempting to buy the legislation they want.

Find out everything you can about the candidates and issues for your area, as well as on the state and federal levels and make the best decision you can. Most polling places have “practice” ballots available, or you can find them online, to see what other issues you may be asked to vote on.  If you need help finding your polling place check your State’s website or you can go to this website to look it up.

Colorado has early voting, so my beloved and I voted October 23rd (where the nifty sticker in the picture came from), on Tuesday I will be helping folks get to their polling places.

So if you haven’t voted and you want the right to gripe about how government is handling things, then it is time to Vote.