Friday, December 11, 2015

You'd Better Watch Out

It was sunny and light enough today to support photos so here are a few for ya. First up there's some results from our big cleanup and paint project:

Granny's sewing machine table got cleaned up and polished - and then I returned the plants which of course are not particularly beneficial to the finish. Oh well. Many years ago we used to keep a fish tank on top which was much worse! The Christmas cactuses are blooming madly. They love spending their summers outside. The big one in front is about 40 years old.

Obviously I love house plants. Heh. The new wall colour (called "Sour Candy") is less yellow in person but it's kind of changeable. The old colour was more peachy but this is like a pale gold. It picks up the light - or lack of it - and becomes warmer or cooler depending.

Hah! I caught my own shadow there. This 100-year-old oak veneer sideboard in the living room was a surprisingly intense clean-out project all by itself. We've ignored its contents for so long! It had family and holiday photos and slides, school yearbooks, VHS tapes of shows like Star Trek DS9 (and we have nothing to play them with), my childhood stamp collection, old camera accessories, dead batteries and other detritus. After an entire afternoon's walk down memory lane, three bags of paper recycling and a bunch of garbage were chucked and now there's space to breathe. We even bought a couple of bins for the photos though we didn't try to sort them. Maybe one day. Or not.

So lovely to see the sunshine! We've experienced one rainstorm after another for weeks now and it's so dark at this time of year anyway. Our dining room buffet is even older than the one in the living room (circa late 1800's) and much larger. I washed each and every dish that went back in it, eliminated some stuff and now it all fits much more conveniently. I even washed down and waxed the old brass lamp and cleaned the stained glass shade (made by Thom, as most of the stained glass in our house). Poor Scheff, my very large Schefflera arboricola, hasn't yet been decorated for the holidays though of course it still retains several from last year! Thom did get our Winter Lights up on the newly repainted stair railing though.

See? Genuine 1960's curlycues! Well, this is just a hint of all the hard work that's been going on around here for the last month. And then...I caught a cold! Flat on my arse. Perhaps my old bod's way of telling me I need a break? And there's still a couple of boxes of tchotchkes left to sort through and all taking up space in my dye studio in the basement.

Speaking of which, 4-50g skeins of sock yarn and the 4 scarves that I managed to hem are currently stewing in an alum mordant bath for future dye sessions. I missed my Spectrum Study Group yesterday (stinkin' cold germs!) so I didn't get to play with eco-dyeing. Yet. As soon as I'm felling better though.

Oh, and I never did show you the slight differences with the yarns from two different dyer's polypore dye baths. I'm not sure this photo helps! The fresher mushroom gave more gold while the older dried one gave a more clear yellow. Though it looks kind of pink on my screen. Subtle and not particularly dark on my alpaca/tencel/bamboo yarn (alum acetate mordant). Some of this will be overdyed to give me more colours for a future sweater project.

Right now I need to defeat the cold bugs and get on with things. We've committed to feeding the Thundering Hordes for Christmas this year. As I've mentioned many times, I'd much rather cook a full on turkey dinner for 30 than buy presents for them! So. Much. Happier.


pao said...

Oh my goodness, what a beautiful home you have, Louisa. And so much work you've been up to, too. Glad I'm finally back in the bloggerhood to see what's going on. A lot! Hopefully you won't have to go through that level of cleaning and sorting for another 47 odd years, right?!

Louisa said...

Why thank you, hon'! Most of our stuff is either old or even older still. It obviously holds up much better than new! Gee, you almost got to visit in person last summer when you were visiting Vancouver. Too bad the timing didn't work out.

Sharon in Surrey said...

My Christmas & Easter cacti are blooming their little hearts out too. Only one of them got outside for the summer this year - still had too many knee bending problems to take the BIG one out & put it under the patio table. But, next spring they'll get new dirt & one big container to share. Isn't it nice to spruce up your place??? I like the older wood furniture with fat new cushions & beeswax or lemon oil polish. It just says cozy & warm to me. Time to haul the junk & spruce up my own place!!!

Louisa said...

Glad I can encourage you, Sharon! You were the one to encourage me to put my cactuses outside for summer. Before that I didn't get nearly as many blooms.