Friday, April 12, 2013

High Tide at Titlow

I wanted to get a picture of Grimmie in front of the Narrows Bridge, so I asked Kate if she'd like to go down to Titlow Beach with me after school. It was a lovely sunny day, but windy and chilly. We went down the beach and around the point toward the bridge.

I had discovered that I couldn't get Grimmie and the background in focus with my 50mm lens, so I thought I might have better luck on a sunny day. It was still tricky.

We ran into some friends who used to be in our ward.

There's a pretty wooded area on the bluff above the beach.

Back down to the water. It was really windy. Grimmie kept blowing over.

Coming back we discovered that we'd been cut off by the tide. There's a spot where the rocks jut out farther, and the water was all the way up. I thought about trying to climb across the rocks (which didn't look easy with Kate and my camera bag), or going the long way around through the woods (wasn't sure how long that would take, and it was getting close to dinner), so I decided to just wade for it. My shoes were already in pretty bad shape anyway, and I'd been saying for months that I needed to get some new ones. So I rolled up my jeans, hoisted Kate up on my back, and waded into the sound. 

Looking back--you can see the place where the rocks stick out into the water. It's only cut off when the tide is all the way in.

Back at the beach entrance, we tried a couple more pictures of Grimmie.

I like this one best! We didn't even have to go down the beach at all. But we had a nice day and a fun little adventure, even if I did completely destroy my shoes.

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Grimmie the Wandering Wesen

I've been busy making this cute little guy for the Facebook Grimmsters group.  We're going to pass him around and take pictures of him around the world. Jaime came up with the idea, Donna made the sweater, and I got to make Grimmie.  It's been a fun project.

This little thrift store piggie sacrificed his bean bag innards to the cause. (Let us have a moment of silence....)

I got some brown suede at Jo-Ann.  Then I dug out my old stuffed animal patterns and found a head to use. This was part of a dog pattern (sort of a Husky type), which I scanned and reduced. (Convenient, that!)

I thought at first that this head was a bit too pig-snouty, so I spent a while trying to come up with something different, but it just wasn't working, so I decided to just go with it.

He looked much better after I got the rest of his face on. (I stuck his head into the sweater to get a picture!)  The hair gave me fits but I like how it turned out. 

Grimmie's pieces coming together. I made his legs out of some jeans that I had decided to turn into cut-offs. (I always wear a hole in the right knee--why is that?)

I did as much as I could on the sewing machine, but toward the end had to do a lot of hand stitching. (We had a productive General Conference weekend--I was finishing up Grimmie and Doug started a new leather project.) I realized that there was no way I could fit the head and the arms and the legs inside the body (for sewing up inside-out)--there just wasn't room.  So I assembled his top and bottom halves separately and  then stitched him together.

Grimmie all finished! You can see the stitches around his middle. He's got polyfill stuffing in his face, arms, and legs, and the bean bag fills up his body and the back of his head.  It was just the right size!

Kate was happy to help me take some pictures of Grimmie outside. Isn't he cute in his sweater?

Kate loves Grimmie.  She knows he's not staying--she will be sad to see him go, but I think she will enjoy following his travels. ( I can make her a Grimmie-friend later.  After I've recovered from this one!)

I took Grimmie down to Point Defiance and got some cute pics... here he is enjoying the duck pond. 

Ah, spring!

Grimmie the Wandering Wesen begins his travels! ("Wesen" is pronounced with a "v" sound--it's German--so it's more of a visual alliteration than an actual one.) Grimmie will be visiting the United Arab Emirates next, and then some friends in Europe. Eventually he'll be going to the Grimm set in Portland. (Norberto Barba's wife Gina offered to take him in for us--assuming they get a third season, which hasn't been officially announced yet, but we are optimistic!) It's great fun to have a group project like this. 

And here are Kate and Grimmie playing together. She cracks me up.

Monday, April 01, 2013

Easter Cousins

We had an especially nice Easter this year, since we got to spend it with family.  Grandma Mary was here for a few days, and then Doug's sister Erika's family came down from Everett Sunday afternoon.  The kids loved having more people around to play with!

We went to a friend's neighborhood egg hunt Saturday morning, but I had also dyed a few of our own eggs, so I put those out after we got back from Church. Gotta get the Easter basket photos, right?

Andy helped.  A couple of the eggs got slightly cracked as he threw them into the basket a bit exuberantly. 

"How many eggs are in the basket, Andy?"

When I was growing up we once dyed some eggs using onion skins, and we wrapped carrot tops around them (tied in place with string) to give them a cool leafy pattern.  (I think my mom saw the idea in a church magazine or something.)   I thought I'd give it a try  this year (not the onion skins, but the leafy part).  I forgot to get carrot tops, but I went over to the woods and picked a few fern leaves to try.  I wrapped them around a couple of the eggs and then tied nylons over them to hold the leaves in place (found that suggestion online).  I did get a little bit of a pattern.  Probably would have worked better if the fern leaves hadn't been so dry.  I'll have to try it again another time!

Aunt Erika and family arrived in the afternoon. (Yay!) Kate enjoyed playing outside with Chloe...

...while Sabin got Doug's crash course in beginning fencing.  I've watched Doug do this with a few of the neighborhood kids before.  He's really good at it and the kids just eat it up.

We had a super-fun game of Apples to Apples (where Sabin won by a landslide).  The kids stayed overnight, camped out in the living room, so they could leave with Grandma in the morning and go back down to their dad's house in Portland.  Kate was a little too excited at having cousins sleeping over,  but we eventually got her settled down.  (And then Sabin was looking for something to read so I hooked him up with Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians... bwa-ha-ha!)

Doug started a new quarter and was back to class bright and early in the morning.  The kids had a little more time to hang out, and then we got some pictures together before they had to go. (Andy looks suspicious.) 

Hugs! Awww!   We all loved having some Cousin Time and Grandma Time.  We're having a reunion (and Erika and Lee's wedding!) in July, and then we get to see all the other cousins too. It'll be great to get everybody together.