It’s the time of year when everyone is making wish lists and gift guides and I swear it’s catching. When I think about such things though, my mind immediately goes to fancy things I’d like to get for my cats. Which possibly means I’m a crazy person. In any case, I thought I’d share some of my favorite, sometimes extravagant, cat presents I’ve been fawning over.
1. I know Meeme would go nuts over this crocheted jellyfish cat toy.
2. This mid-century styled cat furniture looks nice enough to double as regular furniture.
3. I’m really into this cat teepee but would probably make my own version.
4. This is the nicest looking cat tree ever. I’m not sure who came up with the idea to cover cat trees in the ugliest carpet but we collectively need to put a stop to it. Let’s start here.
5. And perhaps something to show off your cat love like this crazy cat sweater.
Weeks ago I had grand plans for Halloween decorations. I thought it was high time we put some of our strange medical props to use and make our place into a creepy mad science lab. But of course, I got too distracted chasing Endeavour around town this weekend to really get things together. We’ll see what kind of magic I can pull of, but for now I’ve just tackled a couple little projects.
I found the pumpkin and candy corn fabric weeks ago and sewed it into a festive table cloth. It works well since we have a lot of pumpkins around. Since my zombie dishcloth has seen better days, I stitched up a brand new werewolf towel. Had I remembered my science lab theme, I would have made a heart or some organs, but in the end I like the werewolf quite a bit.
For the authentic touch, I have this little squirrel skull that we found on a trail. It’s my first time cleaning a skull and it is wonderful how much nature can do on it’s own (thank you ants and bacteria). I have a few larger bird bones but they’re still a little too fleshy and gross to bring inside and I don’t think my neighbors would appreciate me cleaning them in our common areas.
It feels like October is nearly gone already and we’ve only had a single cool day. I wish time would slow down a bit more. Everything feels like it is flying by at lightning speed and I don’t want to miss it.
This story starts with a chair, a chair my grandfather made for me. I’ve had it since I was a kid and I love it not only for sentimental reasons, but also because it’s so comfortable with it’s giant arms.
Originally it was pink, a dusty pink, girlish fabric I didn’t choose. As a teenager I made the unfortunate request for him to reupholster it with leopard fabric and it’s been that way ever since. Partially because of this fabric choice and partially because of it’s size the chair has been banished from our apartment for most of the time we’ve lived here. A few months ago, I reclaimed it from my mother who had been keeping it for me.
I was determined to make the chair fit in our space and as soon as it was home, I started pulling and peeling away fabric, surprised that the pink was still hidden underneath. I was ecstatic, hoping I could just return it to it’s former glory by removing the leopard. The pink was actually quite nice, though faded it had a circular pattern I quite liked.
I cut and I tore and removed as much leopard as I could, only to discover that only about half of the pink fabric remained. So I was stuck. Then the chair just sat like this for months. Occasionally covered with other fabrics to disguise it’s Frankenstein appearance. I was too intimidated to reupholster it and all the slipcovers we found were atrocious.
But finally, nearly six months later, I bit the bullet and made my own slipcover. I had some “help” from little Weetzie. I made a pattern from sheets, pinned and basted all my pieces together and sewed the whole thing up.
It’s almost like a whole new chair! I’ll admit it’s still a little frumpy, but it’s a vast improvement from being covered with a sheet or in it’s torn up state. When I finally chose a fabric, there wasn’t enough yardage to make a cushion so that was sort of a drag. At least now it looks complete and blends in with our apartment. Mostly I’m just happy I tackled and finished a project that has been on my to do list for months and months. Now if only I would repaint our mantle…
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My mind has felt a little like these random photos recently. It seems to be full of all things, all at once. We’ve been cleaning and organizing our home, getting rid of clutter and taking things out of closets. So many secret treasures are hiding in boxes. The end of summer has been full of birthdays and gatherings and yet I’m feeling more antisocial than ever. I wish fall were here already, the heat makes me anxious. These past few weeks have not just signaled the change of yearly cycles, but also a change in life seasons. New excitement is peeking over the horizon. New challenges are drifting in with the wind. Summer lacked direction while now deadlines are looming over me. Everything all at once.
Even the words I write here are scatterbrained. I don’t have just one neat thing to share. I wish I did. I have been struggling with where I want this blog to go, what I want it to be. It’s just for me, so it can be whatever I want but how much of myself do I want to share? How many of my worries and ponderings do I want to put out into the world? How much self reflection is appropriate for public consumption? I’m still trying to figure it out.
Lately I’ve been addicted to audiobooks. It’s nice to have something to focus on when you’re stuck in traffic or doing the dishes or binding a quilt. At the same time, I’ve been a little let down by my reading selection. I know I should look back to what others recommended before, but I need a sure fire winner. I’m looking for not just something that you think I might like, I’m talking your favorite book, or one that just blew your mind.
On the other hand, even if I don’t like a book as much as I’d hoped, I’ve been enjoying rating and reviewing things on Goodreads. There I can actually give reason behind why I didn’t like a book or why I did, plus others’ reviews help me choose my next book.
Of the books I recently listened to above, I enjoyed The Red Garden and Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking. I am a big fan of Alice Hoffman so The Red Garden was easy to love. Quiet was really interesting, especially as a person who is extremely introverted. It highlighted all the talents of introverted people, but it didn’t really lend any advice to fitting in to the real world. Mostly I really enjoyed learning the history of how extroversion became popularized in American culture.
On the other end of the spectrum, I hated A Discovery of Witches. I only got this one because it was on sale and seemed decent but it was awful all the way through. It grosses me out how mediocre writing is celebrated these days. I demand new ideas! I demand editing! I’m only posting this book as a warning so you do not make the same mistake I did.
I also tried out two books by Jeffrey Eugenides. I have always been a fan of The Virgin Suicides so when The Marriage Plot was released I thought I’d give it a go. I suppose these days I’m maybe too aware of feminist issues for this book to work for me. I wonder if this book also was negatively affected for me by a mediocre audio production. Maybe I’ve just outgrown Eugenides as an author. In any case, I wasn’t a fan of this. Middlesex on the other hand was so highly recommended that I thought maybe it would cleanse my palate. It was certainly better but I think I had the wrong idea about it going in. I did really enjoy about two thirds of the novel, but there was one third that dragged on and nearly made me lose interest in the book entirely.
Ok, so what’s the most awesome of awesome books because I need a real winner right now? What do you think about audiobooks, are you a fan?
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