Wednesday, January 31, 2018

A change of pace

Bev and I spent a couple hours at Barb's this afternoon working on projects.

The only project I had that was easily portable was Vern's Attic so I actually got some work done on it. I had back-burnered it as I wasn't sure just how I was going to handle the lighting for it. When I went looking for the round battery for the light I had originally planned on using, I came across a battery light that would make electrification much easier.

With that out of the way, I was able to start putting up the drywall (matboard). Then I realized that I had to frame around the gable opening so have to do that before I can drywall the ceiling.

But am pleased with what I did accomplish.

Back to the dollhouse as that has to be finished by Saturday but I'm looking forward to finishing this and filling it.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Dollhouse roof

The roof has two coats of blackboard paint and it's looking good. But I think I'll add just one more coat.

The paint instructions call for one coat of paint to be applied in one direction and the second to be applied at right angles. Which I did. But I applied the first coat vertically and the second horizontally. I should have done it horizontally, then vertically. That's why I decided to do a third coat vertically. It just works better.

The trick to doing those three coats is:

a paint tray like this which is sealable during coats:

Don't know where I got it but it's about 4" x 3" x 1" and the bottom is marked PLACON CS04 (made with ECOSTAT Recycled PET).

 I used a 2" foam brush that I wrapped in saran wrap immediately after painting each coat.

Friday, January 26, 2018

For Elizabeth (not mini)

I took all the alphabet pieces from the box I bought yesterday and coloured them on one side with Sharpies (a gift from DD Leanne years ago).

(As usual, I didn't think to put rubber gloves on until after my fingers were stained red...but, oh, well...)

Letters are 1 1/8" tall. The original idea was to have all the vowels red but as I coloured them all, that didn't always hold true.

Took a long time to do and I'm hoping that it will be fun for her, Mom and Dad, to play with.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

I hate shopping but....

today was a great day!

Joanne and my first stop was at St. Albert Michael's where Joanne looked for Snow Writer and I wanted chalkboard paint. Both were out of stock but the salesperson kindly phoned Michael's on 137 Avenue and confirmed they had both.

Next we stopped at Home Depot where I confirmed they had chalkboard paint (but way more than I needed) and Joanne got the sandpaper she needed. As we were headed to checkout, I spotted a bin of Contact Paper and saw a roll that I decided would work on the outside of my three room roombox.

This will allow me to get that project nearer completion.

Next stop was the nearby newest Dollarama. They didn't have what I was looking for but I did find a few things.

I'll pass on the letters to Elizabeth but I'll keep the box to use as an Advent Calendar for DGD Holly this coming Christmas.

Don't have a use for the adhesive mirror sheet (5 5/8" x 6") but I know I can use the 1/4" square (and very thin) mirrors somewhere. For $1.50 I can keep it in my stash. I'm out of the larger Ziploc bags so these will come in handy.

Off to Michael's on 137th Avenue where I got my chalkboard paint and Joanne got her Snow Writer.

I don't often shop at Michael's but I must admit that I find the staff much more knowledgeable and helpful than they were years ago. (In this case, the salesperson found, not only the product that was on the shelf, but dug in a bin under the shelves and found this for me - less than a dollar an ounce as opposed to $2.60 an ounce for the one on the shelf.)

We stopped at the Dollarama by Save-On in St. Albert on the way back from Michael's where I found these pieces for Elizabeth for her dollhouse. Each one has a piece of furniture (pretty much to scale), three small pots of paint and a paint brush. Thought they would give her a sense of ownership to paint them herself.

By the time we got to St. Albert Centre, it was 12:50 and we were just a bit early for an in-store fashion show at Tan Jay - Alia where I had purchased two pair of denim jeans on Tuesday. I had told Joanne about them so showed her where they were (short petite sizes) and she got a pair for herself.

Enjoyed the fashion show (just three customers modelling pieces from the store).

Headed to the Food Court where we had chinese food then headed home.

Incredibly successful day!

Winter has returned.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Hit a small (but not insurmountable) snag

Spent today running errands, including a hair cut. One of my stops was at the paint shop at the bottom of the hill as I had the idea to paint the roof with chalkboard paint so Elizabeth could have fun with it on another level.

They had the wood filler I was looking for but not the chalkboard paint so stalled a bit. Paint for Joy should have the small bottles of it and Home Depot has them plus larger amounts so will have to try them later.

The roof is on but requires some wood filler along the peak then will await getting the paint.

It's coming along slowly but it's coming along....

Sunday, January 21, 2018

A solution !! to the dollhouse roof problem..

My friend and fellow miniaturist, Hoanie Y., called the other day and had a great conversation about what we were working on lately. 

I mentioned that I had been working on cleaning my workroom - mostly so I could avoid working on the dollhouse roof.

In fact, here are two work surfaces all set up to work on projects: on the left is the library project and on the right is the kitchen roombox.

So Hoanie said, "instead of cleaning the shingles off the existing roof, why don't you just put on a new roof with the wood that you bought?"


While I like the fact that the original roof is 1/2" plywood and incredibly sturdy, the shingles that remain simply won't come off easily and even where they have been removed, the surface is incredibly uneven with glue and so on.

Here is the top...
 and here it is from underneath...

It took quite a bit of effort to remove it as it had been glued in addition to being nailed every inch. But I did it!

Leanne and I had picked up a  2' x 4' sheet of 3/16" hardboard at Home Hardware (I think). I cut it down to 38 1/2" in length. The sheet had to be cut lengthwise into two sheets 11" wide. I couldn't do this by myself so I asked my DS Shirley to come over after we visited Mom and she helped me with that cut.

Cut went really well. Until I looked at Shirley who was covered with sawdust from her waist to her toes. LOL So we got out the vacuum and cleaned her off before she left.

Then I noticed that the clapboard on the facade of the house was loose so had to reglue it before I could work on the roof.

Now have one half of the roof on. Some tape and a couple nails to hold things right while the glue dries.

It's a bit late to start cutting the second roof piece so will leave that until tomorrow.

There are some bits and pieces to be cut to finish up the windows. And some cleaning that is best done before the second roof piece goes on.

But I'm hoping this will be finished by Tuesday at the latest.

DS Marie and BIL Rob were here to visit Mom on Thursday on their way to two weeks in Mexico. When they return, I'm hoping that they'll take the house home with them and deliver it to Elizabeth after they get home.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Grandpa's Dollhouse Annual Sale

Message from Liz at Grandpa's Dollhouse.......

2018 Grandpa’s Doll House Daily Deals Promotion Begins!!

Remember the new dates:

Monday, January 15 – Saturday, January 27
Monday, February 12 – Saturday, February 24

We hope you choose to stay with us because we have some wonderful items to offer you this year………..better than ever before.
We have closed our home based brick and mortar store.  We will continue to serve you with our website, but we have many items to clear out
in order to turn the previous store space into workshop space!

To that end, we will be offering MANY Awesome Buys this year There will be a change this year that you will want to know about! 
The Awesome Buys will be offered randomly throughout the promotion.  That means that you should take a look at the site often.  You never know when a great deal will be offered.

If you are new to the promotion, an Awesome Buy is a grouping of items that are offered for sale at amazing prices.  They sell fast so you might want to check the Daily Deals category on our site often on these dates:
Monday, January 15 – Saturday, January 27
Monday, February 12 – Saturday, February 24

We will also have a new contest this year that will involve finding KEYS in photos to win prizes.  I will tell you more about that later.

For now, please go to the site and read the information about this promotion.  It is always good to refresh your memory about the timing of the deals and details you may have forgotten.
I know I had to read them………my “over 50” brain does not retain information like it used to. 😊

See you at 8 pm on Monday for the first email with photos of the first day’s offerings!

Liz Dieleman
St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Small Stuff

Barb R. came down for a visit this afternoon and we got talking about our various projects.

One of hers is an egg that she wants to do a meadow scene in and she wants butterflies for it. I remembered that the Small Stuff website had printable butterflies so I found them and printed them on a transparency for her.

It had been a long time since I visited this site and I had forgotten what a treasure trove of information it is. There are thousands of tips here. If you're not a subscriber to the Small Stuff Digest, you have to join for access but it's very easy.

For printable minis in all scales, click here.

The Small Stuff Gallery also contains some printables, tutorials, creative writing about minis and an inventory spreadsheet.

Be prepared to spend a LOT of time exploring this!

Monday, January 8, 2018

coming along

I put all the brass pieces from DS Marie on the second bulletin board then a bunch of art on the third.

 Most of these pictures were purchased at a sale in Edmonton by Etsy dealers. Many dealers have a picture on their business cards which can be used as mini art. Some have pictures printed as fridge magnets and one (unusual) had the smaller prints on the right hand side. I see another art gallery in my future.

The fourth bulletin board has more Christmas minis.

I cleared off my long folding table, put it away and have replaced it with a card table. This will allow me access to the shelving along that wall. So things are coming along.

When I made my daily visit to Mom today, she gave me about a square metre of very fine white tulle. I don't have any immediate use for it myself but our club project this year is a porch and maybe someone will be able to use it to make a screen door.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Laser poop

I had hoped to be organized enough to post in time for the blog to be on the same day. Don't think that's going to happen.

So this is all on Saturday!

DS Shirley and I went over to Mom's at noon to give her a perm....well, Shirley gives the perm.... I'm just the helper. Left at two and ran some errands and, once home, washed the towels, etc., we had used.

Made a pot of chili and ate.

Hadn't realized that, for some reason, I was so tired that I fell asleep for a couple hours.

So much for all the cleaning and organizing I had planned to do.

But I did manage to get hangers attached to the bulletin boards that Joanne had given me.

The first bulletin board was one for the the "laser poop". The pieces for this were almost entirely from M.E.E. member, Tina. However, there was a bag of laser poop and other things that Joanne had brought back for me from Earth and Tree in New Hampshire. (Took me a LONG time to sort through that!)

From the Earth and Tree bag were these spools. At first, I thought I'd offer them to club members who might have a use for them. Then (light bulb moment!), I realized they would make wonderful lamp bases!

I love those moments when I see something in an entirely different light!

From one big bag, I finally got everything separated and on the bulletin board so it's visible and usable!

Didn't accomplish as much as I had hoped but....

Friday, January 5, 2018

The Book copies in the mail, movie and dinner, bulletin boards, etc.

Finally got the five copies of The Book in the mail - only 6 weeks later than usual 😔

Saw "Downsizing" with 7 miniaturist friends then went out to dinner. Movie was good. Dinner with friends was fabulous!

Joanne gave me the bulletin boards so plan on tackling them tomorrow. So far am planning one for art, one for the brass pieces Marie gave me for Christmas and another for all the laser poop that I have. Will sort through it so it's easier to see exactly what I have.

Need to make some changes in my work room before I can start mini-ing again. I'll take out my long folding table and replace it with the card table so I can get to the shelving on that wall. It'll take a day or two to get everything organized but then I hope I'll be able to get working.

Someone had a lovely antique clock for sale on the bulletin board. I had hoped to buy it to use as a setting for a mini scene but someone must have beaten me to it as the notice was no longer up today.

Since the weather has been quite nice this week, had to get out for groceries before it turns cold again next week. So also have some cooking and freezing to do tomorrow also.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

The Book, "Downsizing" movie and dinner

Yesterday was a bit of a loss as two books called my name so nothing else got done.

I just finished binding the last of The Book copies. Have to package and wrap five of them and deliver two.

A group of us from M.E.E. are going to see the  movie "Downsizing" this afternoon. The reviews haven't been great but maybe seeing it through miniaturist eyes will make a difference. Then we're going to dinner. Company will be great even if the movie isn't.

Joanne has some bulletin boards that she's going to give me as she's not using them. So that will give me more space to sort through miniatures that I haven't put away yet.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

The Book is coming along...

I am SO blessed to have the binding machine that DS Marie found for me at the Put and Take in Peace River. My original binding machine had plastic parts that gave away all too soon. This one has metal parts that will last, hopefully, a long time.

It's midnight and so far, I have finished three of the nine books. Will finish tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

The Book, Great Influenza of 1918

Lot of disjointed thoughts...

So far, so good! Finished printing the remaining copies of The Book and collated them (3 1/2 hours).

Hard to say which way I like printing the books. There is a way to print one book at a time which doesn't entail collating the pages BUT there is no rhyme nor reason to the order in which they print. On the other hand, until now I have always printed the 20 copies and collated them - which, no matter, kills my back.

Doing just the remaining nine meant I could remain seated while collating them which made it a lot easier physically.

Will have to think about it before next  year's book.

While I was collating the last of the pages, I watched "American Experience" on PBS. Tonight it was the story of the great influenza of 1918.

This was of particular interest to me as my paternal grandmother had the flu when she was pregnant with my Dad. She survived and on January 4, 1919, my Dad was born. That winter seems to have been much like the one we are experiencing now according to Dad's autobiography. When Grandma was in labour, "Granny" Whitford (an indigenous woman and midwife) showed up after walking miles and miles in the inclement weather and said she had been called to her.

It all sort of came together for me as "The Book" began when my Dad was dying of cancer. When he was so sick, I would find jokes, poems, quotes, whatever, and print them out and take them to him. At one point, Mom said, "You know, you should put them into a book."

And so I did....and I think this is the 18th copy of The Book.

I'm blessed also that my DGS Jonah was born on January 4.

Happy New Year!!!

Well, I'm certainly off to a poor start to 2018. So much for avoiding procrastination!

While I did get all the copies of "The Book" done for Christmas gifts, did not get the copies done for mailing (usually done by the end of November). So today, I printed the final 9 copies. Now just have to collate and bind them.

So hope to get that done tonight and tomorrow. That will clear up space in my workroom. Then I have some papers to sort and file.

Hopefully then I will be able to put away my unsorted minis and be in a position to actually do some work.