Thursday, October 30, 2008

Grandma Gets Down for the Count

The wonderful thing about being with grandkids is you get to love them, kiss them, spoil them, play with them, snooze with them, deal with their moods (well, maybe that part isn't so wonderful), and most grandparents will say that sending them back to mom and dad is also a wonderful part of grandparenting!

I spend the weekend with my grandkids last weekend, and all those wonderful things happened. The mood part was easy for me to deal with--I HAD MY OWN HOTEL ROOM! The nights in the hotel room next to me weren't so good, with three little kids who all awoke at different times of the night, demanding their parents' care to get through the night. Grandma slept through it all.

The little darlings also brought something with them that they shared with Grandma--the stomach bug! #2 had it Thursday night, #1 had it Saturday morning, and thanks to them Grandma went down for the count on Tuesday afternoon!

Now this wasn't the terrible ravaging kind of thing that makes you think dying is a better option than living through it, but it did make things rather uncomfortable for a few days. I came home from work and a hair appointment thinking it was freezing in the house (NOT-it was 72). Then my tummy went between raving hunger and total rejection of the idea of eating. Then---well, I won't disgust you with the rest of the details.

I was fine, or almost fine the next day, so set about a very long day of work with many things on the agenda. Not lunch, but snacks and easy on the tummy foods. Wednesday night was the first regular feeding in a couple of days. BIG MISTAKE!

Luckily for me, today is a day off from work. I'm lounging around, trying to rid my body of that icky feeling, and staying close to the "necessary" room. Hopefull this will pass soon, because I have a bunch of things to do today.

It isn't usual that this Grandma is down for the count, but I'm certainly not up to my usual vim and vigor. Hopefully it will pass soon. I have costumes to make!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Grandma Gets Down

Grandma Dancing

This past weekend, I went to a family resort hotel to meet with my son and wife and three boys. The main feature of this resort hotel is that it has a huge indoor waterpark attached to it, and families go there year round to play in water. It has many slides of all sizes, and water from 0 feet 0 inches, to about 4 feet deep, and many, many play areas for kids of all ages, ADULTS, ALSO! As you can see, a lot of water gets dumped out on the patrons about every 2-3 minutes, with a rush of air whooshing by you if you aren't under the downpour of water! Very exciting.

This weekend was especially fun-filled, because the resort had a lot of family activities with the Halloween theme. Kids were encouraged to bring their costumes, and they got to trick or treat by walking through a fun house of 6 rooms created by the hotel staff, all with famous movies as their theme for costuming and decorating. Nemo, Pirates of the Carribean, Harry Potter, King Kong were some of the most memorable ones. The kids were given a large goodie bag filled with Halloween goodies to take home. Then they had a story time in the lobby, followed by an actual dance in the same space!

Well, this grandma hasn't been to a dance in quite some time! Maybe my old Saturday Night Fever dance routines needed a little brushing up, but we had fun! We danced to at least 3 of the numbers! Then the littlest grandson conked out on his daddy's chest, and the others wanted to go back to the waterpark.

So grandma after "got down" in the lobby, she then "got down" on the couch to babysit the sleeping grandchild, maybe throwing out a couple of ZZZZZ's herself! I'm so willing to babysit, especially sleeping babies, he made one little sigh, but was out like a light the whole time! It was a very good night for everyone in our group!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Sleep Number--35

Here he is, lounging in his favorite spot, the right side of the sleep number bed, sleep number set at 35, his favorite.

Too bad this is the side of the bed that the owner prefers, also her favorite sleep number. But when that side of the bed is empty, Mr. Kitty will definitely take it over! Even when the maid comes in to make the bed, he persists until the blankets are spread over him completely, then he meows for help finding his way out.

As kitties get older, the number of hours of slumber they spend each day increases. The 24 hourly Eat-Play-Nap cycle shortens into mostly an Eat-Nap cycle, with maybe a couple of eat play cycles thrown in. Mostly, it is nap. This guy is getting on in years, at 11 now.

We can see where the favorite places are in the house for these naps, because whereever he spends a lot of time is covered with a thick coating of fine blonde fur. The green chair in the living room, the one he has claimed for his own by scratching up the side of it, bears the marks of many hours of lounging. Two dining room chairs in the hall also are preferred perches, at least for short naps. The bed in the spare bedroom is warmer, it is in a south facing room, so that is where afternoons are spent. And if there are newly laundered dark clothes folded but not put away on the Sleep Number bed, they definitely need christening with fur, so they will be marked.

While he is healthy, he is definitely showing his age. One way I can see him slowing down is his ability to jump up on to the sink. Since he was just a little furball, his preferred method of getting fresh drinking water has been to drink out of the faucet in the bathroom sink. Now, he has to think once, twice or three times before he makes the leap up. It is a ritual to request this drink every time I use the bathroom. If I ignore his request, he'll make me pay by a quick nip to the calf to remind me that he is thirsty. Or it is just his way of staying in control of every situation.

This guy is my guy, he'll seek me out when I stretch out in a comfy chair for a nap, showing his love and devotion by Kneading, something cats do as a remembrance of their infant years, it is a sign of love. How wonderful to show love by digging your claws in rhythmic beats to your loud purrs right into the flesh of your beloved, usually on the upper chest. What's not to love of a fur shedding, nipping, meowing ball of adoration who wandered into my life about 11 years ago?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Dogs will eat anything!

The M & M's have three pets, two kitties who are somewhat antisocial, and a big dog, we'll just call her MDog. MDog is a big tail that wags the dog everytime she sees a friends, and the tail elicits furious barking when a foe appears. I'm glad to be on the friend side of this arrangement, because she has bulked up to be a rather big shepherd/lab/some other big dog type of critter. The lazy life of laying around all day, and eating at will has put quite a few pounds on her frame since she was adopted.

Last night was no exception! MDog stuck her nose near my plate while I was eating, hoping for a quick taste of my dinner. I shooed her away, so she went off to contemplate her next food approach. That came after dinner, when a long-planned bonfire/marshmallow roast put some delicious some-mores in the hands of preschoolers quite in her reach to snatch and run. Chocolate makes dogs poop funny, so we tried to put a stop to that by putting the preschoolers on the playground equipment to eat while the owner tried to corral the dog and put her inside.

This was no way to stop a dog on a mission to maraud human food! While we were outside and she was inside alone, she managed to sniff out the cooling gingerbread cookies on the counter. Since this dog is long as well as wide, standing up to steal the cookies was no challenge for her, and about half of the cookie batch was wiped out in one gulp!

Then when we came in, there she was, eating the cat food!

Now her potential poop and her breath were very un-dog-like. I left before the results of her binge eating became evident. NOTE TO OWNERS: Have the Resolve ready for the carpet, and be ready to open the door to let her out a couple of times during the night! Maybe then this event will pass without damage to the house, and further insults from MDog!

Holes in the Closet

No, they aren't actual holes in the walls of the closets, just new spaces in which to hang/store/gather/save/hide things! You see, yesterday was a big clothing drive at my church. And it was recycling day at my house.

I had totally forgotten about the clothing drive, but had a start with some things stashed in the downstairs storage closet in plastic bags. Also, a box with cast-offs and shoes had been sitting on a bench in my bathroom for God knows how long, waiting to be recycled to someone who could use the stuff. So after Mass, I saw fellow parishioners hauling stuff into the hall, and I knew my next hour would be filled with busy activity to gather stuff for this drive.

In an hour, I came up with 15 heavy bags with clothing, blankets, pillows and other stuff that will never be missed, but nicely made some HOLES IN THE CLOSET! I know that my main closet is thinner, because I emptied 23 shirt hangers in that closet alone!

Now my drawers can close without shoving, my drawers in the spare bedroom are empty (well a couple of them, at least). The closet downstairs has space under the clothes to put more stuff, and some plastic storage boxes are empty! What does that mean? SHOPPING!

No, perhaps redesigning my storage plans could help the situation of stacked shoe boxes in the main closet, and those persistent luggage pieces stored overhead that keep falling on my head might find a new home.

In addition to this purge, I recycled two trunkloads of bottles, cans, papers and cardboard. New day, new start collecting junk and treasures. And today is trash day to boot!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Trivial Pursuit

The game Trivial Pursuit came out maybe 20 years ago, many of you have played it. It joined many a game like that, most notably the TV show Jeopardy, testing participants knowledge of the least of important knowledge, trivia! I hardly ever miss Jeopardy, and if I do, I'm unhappy about it.

In the 90's the idea of having a night where sweeping out the cobwebs of your brains for a couple of hours to dredge up what trivia you remember became popular. It was a fun way of getting like minded people together, those who basically would have been sitting in front of the TV with nothing else to do. Well, maybe I shouldn't make such sweeping judgements of trivia night participants, because these events usually do bring together a very diverse crowd, and the more diverse the group, the better your team has as a chance to come out on top!

I have friends who met and married playing trivia. They met on a chat room on the internet that brought trivia buffs together. Once they got together (in location and through vows), they presented many an awesome trivia night for local residents. They always formed a very formidable trivia team with some friends--they were known all over the local area and feared for their prowess. I was very seldom asked to be on their team--I definitely was a lightweight in contributing to my team, and that was well noted by these friends.

But, I've been a participant on many trivia teams. I'm usually asked as a substitute, because I do have some diverse interests that could be helpful, but my interests are NOT sports, movies, Oscar winning actors or actresses, pop music, or politics, which are usual trivia night categories. I was asked last night because there was an 8th seat at the table that would go empty if I couldn't come, and maybe I could contribute one or two answers.

Well, last night, I hit the trivia jackpot! The first category was Oscar winning movies, I think I guessed one out of 10. I thought, "Here we go again, another night of dozing through the evening!" My "date" for the night, the blogger known as This D*mn House, was awesome! She answered the questions more than once before they were even asked! We howled at her note pad, which contained answers to future questions. The next category was spelling. TDH is a writer, so this was a no-brainer for her! I contributed one English teacher answer--superlative for stellar, which is most stellar! We flubbed up on "septuagenarian", I have 5 more years to master that one before I become one!

Then I hit the trivia mother lode. They asked you to find cities based on their longitude and latitude coordinates! Well, I had spent a great deal of time teaching 5th and 6th graders how to do this many years ago in my life as an elementary school teacher, so we ruled on that one. Got talked into one incorrect answer, and we had no clue on one other vague one, but we did that well and quickly.

We ruled on the category "Denizens of the Deep", where we had to identify pictures of fish. Luckily, I had often studied the Department of Conservation guide book to pick out some local species. Then we all knew the clownfish aka Nemo. The rest of the fishies came from the menu at the local seafood restaurant, and I came up with the name mahi mahi for the ugliest fish on the paper! We scored 10 out of 10 on that one!

Since this event was held in a Catholic High School, and the majority of the participants had gone to the school, the category "Saints" should have been good for us. I'm a former Catholic School principal, and we talked about saints every day! But we stunk up the room big time on that category. How can you keep all those Italian saints straight in your mind? All those Francises and Thomases? Not good for us at all! Guess that table with all the nuns got all those correct!

I think we got a perfect 10 score on a couple of others, though. We had fun with a category that had colors in the names of the answers. I came up with the name of a song--famous violin piece of music--everybody knows it is "Orange Blossom Special". I spit that one out before they even played one note! We got 1 wrong on that category, because TDH identified a famous but obscure mob group as the Lavender Hill Gang, not the Purple Hill Gang. IT WAS THE SAME SHADE OF THAT COLOR, COME ON, GIVE US A BREAK!

For the first time in my life of being a team member of a trivia night team, I walked out with my chest held high, having contributed more than my usual 2 answers to the night's endeavors. We scored 83 points, also my best showing on a team that had a breath of a chance of winning. The winners scored 94, that is awesome 94 out of 100--Whew! They were hard to beat!

Besides the trivia, we had lots to eat, at least 3000-4000 calories of cookies, brownies, chip and dip, popcorn and free drinks! We were all starving once we got there, since the drive-through stop to Jack In the Box hadn't filled all the corners of our tummies (we stopped there ON OUR WAY to the Trivia Event!) We also had lots of fun. Monkeygirl's friends from high school knew me as Mrs. Monkeygirl! They read Monkeygirl's blog, also This D*mn House's blogs. Check them out if you haven't seen them lately. On the way home, we checked out This D*mn House's DIY projects in person, albeit in the dark, but we got to see the finished product in reality. Her work is very nice, very professional and she is doing a great job making her little nest very attractive.

It was a fun night, and maybe my breadth of knowledge can be useful at times. I'll have to give those Trivia night coordinators a little more cash next year, and maybe we'll hit the mother lode of good categories again! And maybe we might even win!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A Classic For Our Times

Aren't there things that just make the season for you? I say it can't be Christmas until I hear the theme music from "Charlie Brown Christmas", and it can't really be Halloween until I see "It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown".

Now, during the past few years, it isn't that easy to find these kinds of former blockbusters on TV on a regular basis. Reality rules on most tv channels, and this is pure fantasy. So I took the bull by the horns and bought the DVD, ostensibly for the M & M's to watch, but really for Grandma to fulfill her October dream.

It is funny, that crude animation designed and recorded decades ago somehow looks funny next to Pixar's "animation near to photographic quality" movies. And the funny bits were somehow lost on a 4 year old trying to understand why the dog was flying and being shot at on top of his doghouse. He just didn't get the subtleties of '60's humor. Guess he hasn't seen many World War I movies, where single seater planes fought eye to eye with the enemy. Was it really that long ago that this was first published? Yes, dear, it was 1966. Whew, how time flies.

I often say there are certain things I must do to properly celebrate the season, and as I said before, this is the one that lets me feel like Halloween has been properly introduced. Then I can get out the costumes, the decorations and plan for the candy basket and feel in the spirit of things. So I showed it to the grandkids the other day. They were unimpressed, but I loved it! There's still a piece of kid in me that says it isn't Halloween without the Great Pumpkin in your life.

P.S. HINT: Don't plan too far ahead on that candy basket, a mistake which I made. It has been emptied once, and refilled and is dwindling fast in this house, with Halloween over 2 weeks away. The only answer is to plan on filling it with candy that you DO NOT LIKE. Then it will stay filled until Halloween night when you can give the nasty stuff away!

Part-Time Job

Part-Time Job--what does that mean to you? Does it mean you spend part of the time at work? Or Part of the time at home, maybe an evening, or an occasional late afternoon, doing your own thing? I haven't decided which description fits this job I currently have.

My original concept of a part time job was that I would go to work for a couple of hours and then come home to have the rest of the day to do what I needed to/wanted to do. This description sort of fit what I have been doing for the past three years. But about a year ago, I was approached about taking over as coordinator of the program of teaching in which I spent part of my time doing. I officially took over that role in May, 2008. Since then part time has been redefined for me!

Does going in at 8:30 a.m. and coming home at 5:45 p.m. sound like the job is part time? Does attending three afternoon meetings in a week, one emergency meeting the next week and still nothing resolved sound like part-time work? Does grading papers until 10 p.m. at night sound like a part time job? The only thing that even resembles the part time part of this is every month when the paycheck rolls in!

My job seems to have been redifined for me, thinking that as coordinator, I must be given enough jobs to do and responsibilities to accomplish to make my part-time pay worth while. My predecessor made things look so easy, why did I think I would be able to do this job?

Right now, I'm looking for another teacher to work with us. That has been fun and interesting, getting to talk to some very talented people. One beautiful candidate was teaching in our department! Weren't we lucky that the boss remembered in her resume that she taught our brand of English as a Second Language as well as English comp? Yes, we were!

So, in these economic tight times, I guess I should be glad to have a part-time job. My days are full, the people are wonderful, and my only wish about this part time job is that I really had enough hours in the day to do all that I am expected to accomplish. But it keeps me off the streets and out of the department stores, so that is good.

Monday, October 13, 2008

It's a Small World

Have you ever said that? I have said it so often, and the reason why is because I lived and worked in a small Midwestern town for about 10 years. The people I met there were wonderful people and I loved working there. (See Previous blog August 14, 2008, "Good Friends Together Again" about my experiences last summer when I went back to visit.) And I keep bumping into them, or people who know them, wherever I go!

This small town has a lake community near by with a resort-like feel about it. The lake is big enough to feature water sports like boating, fishing, water-sking. It draws people from the big city to move there because it is about 100 miles away, and not as crowded as some other bigger lake resort communities in our state. Many people who own property there use it only on the weekends. I loved spending my weekends there. I felt like I was going to a nice hotel every time I went there. I made sure the maid (me!) made the beds and did the dishes before we left, so it would look nice when we returned!

We really enjoyed our time there, but for the late Mr., it wasn't a good fit. He wasn't the resort type or a boater (he never did drive the boat to my satisfaction, he drove me nuts because I thought he was going to run into stuff.) One summer, I spent all my time down there, and I got very good at driving the boat, including launching and docking it all by myself. He hated it, and would never go out on it. So we gave up on the resort lake living after about 6 years, and found a place a little farther out in the country, with 160 acres of trees and a small 5 acre lake of our own. To him, this was heaven.

It was odd, but one summer we went to Door County, Wisconsin for a short vacation. I think I met more people from my state while on that vacation, and so many of them had ties to this lake community we had lived in. We said over and over, "isn't it a small world?" I even met my best friend from grade school, high school and beyond, who I hadn't seen in a while, she and I both came out of two adjoining stores at the same time, to meet face to face! Now that's a small world!

Well, yesterday, I had another of those "small world" experiences. I was attending the final performance of Move Over Mrs. Markham, and as I went in to sit down, someone called my name. I looked up and here sat a couple I had known from my small town experience! He was one of the first people I met and worked with outside of the school where I was principal, because he was a caterer, and he catered our first big dinner benefit for the school the first year I was there. Since he could cook for a crowd, whenever the cook got sick, he filled in, and we ate well!

Now, how did he get to the performance of the play I costumed? Well, his daughter and son-in-law are two of the people who are organizers of the players group that put the play on! I had met these people, but had no idea of their relationship to my friends from Small Town! We just looked at each other over and over, saying "I can't believe this!" It was so good to see them and talk to people who I knew and loved to work with while I was in my Small Town experience years.

I had known that his wife was a former professional actor/singer. She still has her beautiful voice and good looks. I think that the two of them were involved with the creation of this theatre group way back when, before anyone of us had moved away from the big city to Small Town. He knows some of late Mr.'s cousins, because this group was launched at a Catholic Parish near where late Mr. grew up, where a lot of the cousins lived. Again, what a small world!

It is always good to see friends that late Mr and I made while we lived in Small Town. We loved that community, and they returned their love to us over and over, especially when he got sick. I think I'd be happy if I were still living there, because I still have so many good friends who live there. But life leads us down a road we know not where it will end up, so we'll just have to deal with that. I wouldn't want to be far away from my grandchildren or kids, so where I ended up is best for me. But it is always good to go down memory lane with my good friends from Small Town, USA, where the people are the salt of the earth!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

M & M's at the "Fee-a-tre"

The M & M's are getting to an age when they can sit still to watch things like movies and shows, and not cause the rest of the audience to grumble and complain. Boy M is 4-1/2 and Girl M is 3-1/2. Boy M has gone to the fee-a-tre (his pronunciation) with grandma a couple of times. One such event was to the big fancy venue in our city to see "Go Diego Go". He often comments about his trip to the fee-a-tre to people who he has just met, so it must have made an impression on him. He launched into a full description of our experience to my brother-in-law and sister, this was at least 3 months after he experienced it. So I know he must have been impressed, because he is normally shy with people he doesn't know well.

Well, the show "Beauty and the Beast" was a perfect venue to take the M & M's to, because I was pretty sure it would hold their interest for at least half of the show. Girl M was totally mesmerized during the first half, at least until the inevitable "I've got to go potty" came up. But that was handled quickly before the big number in Act 1, "Be Our Guest" with all the dancing, somersaulting, twirling dinner objects started their routines. Boy M was wiggly, but he loved seeing the Beast every time he came on. We were lucky to have front row seats, with no one else in the row or in front of us, so they could wiggle, squirm, kick the seats and bother no one except Mom and Grandma.

The first act is long, about 1-1/4 hours long. It lays the story of the two potential husbands for Belle, Gaston the hunk, and Beast--the Prince turned Beast. This was a little tough for the little wigglers to endure, but a nice intermission and a walk around the fee-a-tre to visit the little girls/boys room, a quick shared drink of soda, a trip to the drinking fountain seemed to be all that was needed. The second act was more action packed, with the wolves attacking the Beast, Belle and the Beast finally interacting and beginning to fall in love, Garcon deciding to get the Beast and kill it, the fight between the townspeople and the enchanted objects in the castle, and the inevitable showdown with Garcon and the Beast. Garcon gets tossed out of the window of the castle, only to be seen again at curtain call (to cat-calls and boos), but the Beast is mortally wounded, and Belle professes her love for him. Then the amazing transformation began, quite well done and with great special effects -- a raising floor panel lifts the Beast, amid lots of smoke and lights. Then the he turns and steps off the platform as the prince, right before our very eyes! So, the last 10 minutes of the show captured their interest greatly, and they both sat quietly on my lap watching the whole spectacle!

I was very proud of the fact that neither had to be carried out having a tantrum, and they were both quiet for most of the time. Boy M was processing the whole story during the entire show, and kept asking me questions in his clear, high soprano voice, so I hope the next row back wasn't disturbed. Girl M can get pretty head strong about wanting to leave or do something else, but she endured. The entire show lasted over 2-1/2 hours with intermission, and they got through it. Passed a great big hurdle for Grandma, because I was pleased that it went as well as it did.

As we were leaving, the Prince and Princess (Beauty and the transformed Beast) came to the lobby in their costumes. Girl M got to talk to the Princess, The "Princess" icon is one she loves and she always wants to dress like a Princess. Boy M, being a little bit shyer, just watched as his little sister boldly spoke up.

I hope this will be the beginning of a whole new venue of entertainment for them. And it certainly is fun for Grandma to share her love of theatre with these darling little ones.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

English Teachers

Those two words conjure up concepts that would make us all shudder. Musty stacks of books, ungraded papers, debating the meaning of onomatapoeia (or some word none of us have ever heard or care to know about), this is what I think when I say the word English Teachers. But, unfortunately, I am one of them.

Now, my title as ESL teacher (when I flash those words, rarely does the listener know what it means, so I'll explain right now, it means English as a Second Language) by definition means that I'm not in the high lofty realm of the medieval literature teacher, or the Russian novel as metaphor for life teacher. I'm teaching about sentences.... "capital letters start sentences, periods at the end, sentences are not one page long" type of teacher. And I should talk about run-on sentences, as I just broke up a long run on in the previous two sentences in this blog!

Well, when a bunch of English teachers get together to co-author a document, things can get right ugly. Add a couple of liberal arts deans to the mix, and we have more brain cells in one room than should ever be put together without something deadly happening. That is where I have found myself in the past few months. I've been working with some people to craft a document to present to the VP of the college, who will decide on changing a placement test for our ESL students.

The words were flying yesterday. We spent a long time on one word! Discussing the nuances of the meaning, the message the word presented, did we want to give that impression? The word was "admit". Did someone admit to have an opinion that was counter to the prevailing opinion? This generated a flurry of emails, lots of suggestions, and finally, the sentence that contained the offending word was thrown out of the document completely.

The poor dean who was in charge of this melee kept her cool. She is a former Air Force Colonel. She told me one day that each day as she dresses, she dons her flak jacket (figuratively, I hope!), so she can take it. She doesn't bark orders, but listens attentively and tries to work toward consensus. She has done a remarkable job chairing this task force while corraling so many brain cells, all swirling around in the room trying to outdo each other.

So perhaps after about 20-30 hours of meetings, 100's of emails, and some odd action research (did we ever think we would have to take 2 placement tests pretending we were students who didn't know a shred of English?), we may be finished with our task force project. If our intrepid dean can somehow synthesize all those wonderful clear???? ideas that were generated in our last meeting, and we can all agree on it, then we are finished with our task. Then the report will be given to the VP, hopefully not to be filed in the circular file, and the appropriate action taken.

This is how a publically funded college is run. Lots of paper, lots of task forces, lots of meetings, e-mails flying back and forth, passing recommendations to the VP and Pres, and hopefully some type of positive action as a result. Only time will tell whether the work will bring some kind of move, and we will get our new placement test.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Gaston and LeFou

The concurrent play to "Move Over Mrs. Markham" was "Beauty and the Beast", which was put on by a theatre group that I first started my costuming career with.

Beauty and the Beast also went on stage Friday night, and I got to see it on Saturday evening. Gaston was awesome in his tunic, complete with black tights, high boots and a pompador hair do. LeFou was hilarious with pratfalls, blackened teeth and the silliest grin. The costumes looked wonderful on them. With all of LeFou's falls from grace, the costume seemed to hold its own as durable!

The other costumes for this play were absolutely awesome! I think one lady was responsible for many, if not most of them, and they were just fabulous. They give awards each year for various categories of community theatre, and I hope this show is nominated, because they are serious contenders for the top award in costuming.

I did see some retreads from "The Music Man" last year's production. These were costumes I made, but they were just bits and pieces here and there. One character wore his knickers, I think this was his third show in the same knickers! He was my son in Music Man, so I was particularly attuned to what he wore! All the men in this play wore knickers, so there were probably a few more that I made that were prancing around on stage.

Absolutely excellent, you guys really did great!

No Blog, No Sleep, No Time, Whew!

The blogspot has been ignored for an entire week. It wasn't the only thing that was ignored! The dirty dishes in the sink, the cat who meowed for a day for a refill to his dish, the newspapers, the pile of folded laundry at the foot of my bed, all were languishing and waiting for Sew What? to finish putting the final touches on costumes for "Move Over, Mrs. Markham".

Anyone who is involved in theatre knows that tech week is akin to Hell Week for the frat boys and sorority girls. You are run from sun up to sun down finishing up the final details to get this show on stage, looking good, no wardrobe malfunctions, all props in place, actors knowing their lines, and the microphones working correctly. One by one, we attacked these various issues, and by Friday night, the show opened to a small but very enthusiastic crowd.

During tech week, my bosses saw fit to schedule three, count them THREE, afternoon meetings. Two were with district personnel about a big grant we are participating in, and one was called by the college president, hello, you'd better be there, and they will take role! I tried my darndest to get into my accountant to lament the national disaster on the stock market, and finally made it on Friday afternoon. All of this was complicated because I had to throw in alternative routings for each of these meetings and play practice, because of presidential politics! In other words, the meetings and theatre were at the other end from my house and work, with the site of big national political things going on in between! And two nights in a row! Our one actor got caught in the traffic jam when the President came to town, and they shut down all the roads!

This week, besides making more scraps on the floor of my sewing room, I made 2 pair of boxer shorts, one for the "decorator" and one for the lady who runs around half of the play in her sexy nightie. She is like me, I wouldn't want to be on stage for an hour without protection of some cute underwear, so I accomodated her comfort level, and made a cute pair for her. One day I was called into service as an upholsterer, making the "oval bed" more finished by adding upholstery to the base of it. The main male character came to me the night before dress rehearsal, showing me the brand new pants we bought for him to wear with a hole in the side seam AND a broken zipper! Oh, how I hate replacing zippers. Especially when I am so very tired.

But, Thursday night, at about 12:30, all the costumes were finished. We had all gotten about 5 hours of sleep each night, no naps all week in the afternoon (I did not snooze during the meetings, although it was mighty tempting.) By Saturday morning, I was exhausted, and spent at least 6 of the daylight hours snoozing the time away.

So, each night when I returned to the roost at midnight, the last thing that was on my mind was blogging. Sorry, Sew What? I have ignored you, and I will not do that again, I promise!