Oh Crap, it’s Friday isn’t it?

And I suppose that about tells you how my day has gone.

Have some photos.

Now that the baby is almost one, I’m trying to get back into the meatless Fridays. Naturally, I forgot to eat lunch. Then I found this Snickers, and it was like God spoke to me. And He told me to eat something and stop snarling at my children. So I did.

Then I made onigiri stuffed with salted salmon for dinner.

Julian is suspicious.

But it ultimately met with his approval. The shiozake did at least.

Earlier today I was sitting relatively peacefully, enforcing the ‘do your bloody schoolwork before I eat you alive’ rule, when I was struck by inspiration so violently that I jumped in my chair and knocked over a pile of crap. The inspiration was to use some small individual coat hooks horizontally as curtain tie backs. I even had just enough oil rubbed bronze spray paint left to give them a coat so they matched the rest of the curtain hardware.

And they’re PERFECT.

This is why I never throw anything away. Nothing is quite as demoralizing as realizing you now have the perfect use for something that you threw away in a misplaced frenzy to live an unachievably orderly life.

Okay, this is from earlier in the week, but I have acquired a hanging wall file and a pretty bulletin board in my quest to turn my corner into something that approaches a functional work space. The basket has potential. I might get one or two more.

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A Fauxdori Cover

Well, I just got laid flat for 3? 4? days by norovirus. And this was going so well too. I suppose it couldn’t be helped. Let us hope that no one else gets sick, because that was an absolutely vile experience.

Since I need something brainless to talk about today, I thought I’d share my new fauxdori travelers notebook-esque with y’all.

Traveler’s notebooks are kind of expensive, and they tend to use a weird notebook size, and I’m not super keen on the whole ‘lots of little notebooks held together with rubber bands’ business. But I love the covers themselves, and I desperately wanted a similar style cover for the soft cover Moleskine notebook where I back up my brain. When I found myself with some Amazon and Michaels gift cards after the Christmas dust had settled, I decided to make one.

Amazon provided me with a 12″ square of scrap upholstery leather in a rich brown. But it was impossibly floppy, nowhere near sturdy enough for a notebook cover. And I didn’t really want to go through the merry go round of ordering different kinds of leather to see what ended up being stiff enough to work.

Instead I elected to stiffen the leather I had by soaking it in molten beeswax.

Himself thought I was absolutely insane at first, but the results spoke for themselves.

I double threaded the book with teal elastic, so I had two strands to hold my much larger notebook securely in place. And instead of the lead wire crimp seal that a regular travelers notebook would use, I just knotted the elastic in the interior of the cover.

To replace the seal aesthetically, I cut up a cord bracelet of tiny Saint Benedict medals to get the beads. One medal got threaded into the elastic at the top of the spine and another was threaded onto my big notebook’s bookmark, both as a weight and because I just really like those tiny medal-beads.

Last, but most important, I added two more 2mm holes punched in the front cover about 1cm apart horizontally, then slit the leather between them. This lets me hook my beloved Lamy securely onto the notebook and mostly prevents me from losing it.

As a finished product, I really think it’s perfect. The beeswax has left the leather sturdy (and waterproof), but it also has a sense of not being too proud to get banged about. It’s not a notebook too proud to work. It keeps track of my pen. The colors make me happy. The medals remind me to pray. And it smells lovely.

And all of this very tangible pleasure in the physical object of the notebook turns out to be very important when it comes down to actually using it regularly, but I’ll talk about that another time.

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A Day at the Museum

Today was insanely busy.

I got up, got David’s schoolwork lined up, and told him that when he was done with that we could leave for the natural science museum. Then I bundled the smaller two into the car. We ran a quick errand, grabbed breakfast on the go, and scrambled to get to Raphael’s speech therapy.

Speech therapy was my last true moment of peace and silence.

After speech, we ran a second quick errand, then hurried home. David had completed his school work, dressed, and packed water bottles and snacks for the trip to the museum. I cycled them through the bathroom, crammed everyone back into the car, and headed for the museum.

Five minutes later we turn around because I had forgotten a stroller. *sigh*

Stroller obtained, we ate pavement for the museum. We arrived and had approximately an hour to spend there before we had to head to the lab. So we went to the dinosaur exhibit, which Raphael has been begging to visit again for weeks now.

Raphael is terrified of the dinosaurs, the megalodon shark jaws, and generally anything bigger than a starfish. We had to carry him squawking past the Diplodocus, in spite of him being perfectly well aware that it was a plant eater. (Raphael knows the characteristics of all the dinosaurs better than anyone else in the family.) And he was outraged when I chose to go examine the biggest T Rex to see if it was a cast or real.

David and I had fun examining the dinosaurs and deciding which were real fossils and which were casts. We later encountered our favorite docent (the one who wanders around offering to let kids touch fossilized dino poop), and he was super impressed that we called them ‘casts’ and not ‘fakes’.

Megalodon jaw. From the back you can see the extra rows of teeth, waiting to replace any that fall out, which I think is extremely cool.

But then the fossils were done and we were out of time. Off to the lab!

At work, the facilities are doing something to the emergency power feed. This has required us to transfer all our -80C and -20C freezers that are currently on the emergency feed to go onto regular feed overnight. I rearranged my work week special to accomodate this. (And I’ll be heading in early tomorrow morning to oversee their restoration to the emergency power circuits.)

We arrived at the lab, I walked into my office with all three boys in tow to discover that the Surplus people had come and taken away all our chairs. Not the chairs that were specifically labeled as surplus. All the chairs. The office was chairless. Well. I got a handle on that, got the boys settled, got some files that I needed to work on at home transferred, and set about moving the freezers.

By the time the facilities guys came, I had all the freezers except the two enormous -80C freezers transferred. I can move those by myself, but I can really use a hand getting them out the door because it takes some maneuvering not unlike getting a large sofa up a small stairwell. But we got those moved, I made sure that everything was maintaining the correct temperatures, and then we headed back to the museum.

While I was moving freezers, I texted Himself and told him he was on his own for the evening. It turns out today was Thursday (I tend to lose track) and on Thursday the Children’s Museum has free admission from 5pm to 8pm. It’s rather expensive, as musuems go, and not as interesting to everyone, so we don’t go much. But since we were in the area at the time free admission started why not? Himself could really use a quiet evening on his own.

Dinner was had and then we spent the last 45 mintues the museum was open walking through the new Weiss Hall of Energy, which was amazing. It’s very kid friendly too, lots of hands on activities. We had just found the pipeline pig race (pipeline pigs are used to clean a pipeline between loads of different substances) when it hit closing time. We’ll have to go back another day to finish exploring.

Then we walked over to the Children’s Museum, which is only half a mile, and I hate parking there anyway, so why move the car. My big two children promptly vanished into the melee, with Raphael occasionally remerging to beg for ice cream.

Eventually I gave in and opted to spend the last hour of our evening at Amy’s, eating an indecent amount of ice cream. And by the time we got home, they were all asleep.

So. It was insane. But it was a good good day.

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