my own little tree-dition

Hope any Americans out there had a good Thanksgiving. It's my least favorite holiday (more accurately, I hate it to the point of being intolerable on the day), so my family graciously allows me to do my own thing, understanding that I still love them and am grateful and thankful for them.

This year I spent Turkey Day cooking my own little meal, playing with the kitten, and decorating my little mini-trees!

I'm finding some pleasure in changing it up a little bit every year. Last year, the pink tree had a lot of red, brown, and rust tones to the ornaments, and I also got my little $5 white mini tree to go with it. The first year I had it, I was just tickled to have some pastel going on! I called it "earthy pastel."

This year, a strong return to the "earthy" theme, but entirely in neutrals. I apparently got a package of these little burlap bows last year, but it wasn't opened, since I guess my tree was a little more fiery last year. How delighted I was to add a few this year! I've never had anything for the top of the tree and think a bow looks pretty cute on top.

Every single year, though, without fail: TOADSTOOLS.

At the base, my little silver pumpkin and my Jack Skellington Funko Pop from my bestie, E. You know how much I love "Jack's Lament," right?

Anyway, I'm going to see if Target has anything good in the way of mini-ornaments this year to put on the white tree. It's hard to find ornaments any smaller. If I don't find any, I might tie a couple of burlap bows onto it, but they're pretty huge in comparison to it! I still have plenty of holiday decorating ahead of me in the coming weeks, and I have some ornaments to talk about, too.

In other news, you guys, I'm so close to being done with my 2015 ripple, which as you know, is a gift. It's the hugest blanket I or probably anyone else has ever made, yet it still needs to be a foot longer! I can't go get my final skeins of yarn until I get my paycheck, though, or do any Christmas shopping. I would've been done by now if I wasn't so broke I can't buy yarn, so I'm having to sadly accept the blanket probably won't be delivered to its intended before November's over.

In less exciting news, I've had a sore throat the past couple of days. If I get sick, I'm going to be very upset, because I was just sick in September/October, and karmically speaking, I don't deserve it!!

li'l Smokey

My house has a new cat! He's just a little kitten. We haven't had a cat since about 2010, but we're cat people (well, I'm a rat person, but I like cats) and have always had a sense of, "Someday we'll have a cat again..."

Smokey came to us from my sister's boyfriend's aunt who rescues strays. Sister and her boyfriend already have a cat named Hamilton that they found in a Taco Bell parking lot, and not long ago, the aunt found three little kittens, so their house is full of animals. They also have dogs! My sister, sweetly devious, conspired to get us to adopt this one. This consisted of just bringing him to our house and watching us all fall in love with him.

We don't know how old Smokey is (a couple or few months?) but he's just basically the best little kitten ever. He has beautiful brown eyes and this ruffly white fur on his chest. As he is so young, he wants to play a lot and is very energetic, so he's infused our whole house with a perky interest and lots of affection. It is very often you'll hear someone chirp, "Smokey!" because he'll come to you when you call and follow you around like a puppy and we all want one-on-one Smokey time. He's really sweet and gives kisses. Like, he'll come up to your face specifically for it.

He's been here a week but it already feels like he's part of the family.

Also, I'm weirdly... this is strange, but I'm weirdly unaffected by animals most of the time. Rats are my weakness, but I'm bizarrely unmoved by cute animal pictures/videos. Even if I might enjoy interacting with other people's pets sometimes. I don't automatically feel affectionate towards animals or particularly moved to think they are cute, so I am usually just nodding and telling people what they want to hear when they show me pictures of their pets or tell me stories about them. When we adopted Smokey I had some weird anxiety about it. I guess I was just afraid that he wouldn't like me or something. But I've been just as obsessed with him as everyone else!

craft crunch

I started this embroidery (based off this fox print by ChipmunkCheeks on Etsy; I just recreated it by drawing free-hand, which I realize is uncool, but I really like the florals) a few years ago, but it's been lingering with its tail unfinished for a really long time! So long that the original tail I'd drawn in blue water soluble ink had disappeared.

The past month and a half has found me working really hard on my 2015 ripple and I'm almost done -- I'm 4/5ths done, easily! -- but I ran out of yarn on Saturday night, so I had to find something else to work on in the meantime. I haven't done any embroidery in a long time!

I also enjoyably redressed many of my Blythes yesterday morning -- Gavin, Mallow, Drew, Fey, Wisp, and Petaline! Here's Miss P.

Today it's rainy and gray and cool and lovely. Such a moody autumnal day.

video: Treating Blythe Hair

All right, friends. I finally filmed a video about treating Blythe hair, since it's been my #1 video request since before I even really actively began making videos and posted about Very Vicky and Vinter Arden's unfortunate hair situations.

This was a challenge for me to film, and I always knew it would be, which kept me from making it sooner. I knew I needed help. I knew could not film it all by myself, so my younger sister kindly agreed to help me, and bless her freakin' heart for it!

We filmed it in the kitchen at 2 a.m. so as not to bother anyone else in the house, and setup took a good long time. We had two lights taking up space, and two cameras, one on a tripod and one in her hands raised fairly high, and me trying to direct and warn her in advance about what I was going to do so she could be sure to catch it... what a to-do! We did it one take, too, and she did a fabulous job. We had both been apprehensive about whether or not it would turn out at all.

At one point I looked at her and said, "All this prep and working out where the bowl should be and what's in the shot and where to stand... it's so much work for a freaking YouTube video, isn't it?"

Anyway, I couldn't have filmed it, literally, without my sister's gracious help, not only with holding a camera for me, but discussing with me the setup and what was in her shot, being willing to take direction and having so much patience. She helped with the prep and setup as well as the actual filming, and was just basically an angel.

In the end I can only hope that this video is helpful for someone, because I know I am the type of person who also benefits more from seeing something done in real life more than text instructions or even pictures. I also mostly make videos because people have asked me to, so this effort is for those people.

P.S. Wisp looks great, I don't mind saying!!! I'm going to film a dolly dressup with her ASAP!

Lady Gaga - Hair.mp3

I finally brushed out Holland's hair and gave her a treatment.

It had gotten downright wiry-looking, as you can see above in the screen cap from her last dressup video.

It softened it up a bunch after a dip in hot water with some fabric softener. I scrunched it several times in my hand while it was still hot and I was kinda gently squeezing water out, so the curls she's supposed to have appeared out of nowhere.

These were not present before! I didn't take "before" pictures but it was just a gnarly mess. I really did not arrange her hair in any particular way as I left her to dry. I didn't try and form curls or anything. If I had, I might have gotten even cleaner results, but as it is, this girl's hair looks crazy shorter than it did, just because the curls have tightened up! When I put her in her stand, I was like, "She looks so different... her hair is like, an inch shorter...!" So crazy!

I'm inspired to give Lamb (another curly girl!) a refresher dunk, and maybe even Wisp, too! (I know... I have to try and figure out how to film it... I only have so many hands.)