Monday, October 19, 2015

It's been a while

...since I posted.
I have several posts waiting in the wings, but I've been so crazy busy I haven't had time for blogging. I'm starting to realize that busyness in a fact of life — my life, anyway. And also that, although I do have a limit (after which I turn into the Grouch), I rather thrive on busyness. Perhaps thrive a little too strong a word, but I like being busy, and a lot of the busyness is self-imposed.
What I've been doing:

  • Writing! I just got done with a short story fairy tale (12,000 words), with an Arabian feel. It's a combination of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp (two really weird original fairy tales, by the way), and something else entirely. Now that that's finished, I've returned again to my Arthurian Chronicles and writing 500 words a day before checking my email (that's a good way to make yourself write past the tough spots, by the way). Aaand I'm working on query letters when I get the chance, so that I can submit a book of five fairy tales for publication. Eep! It's really exciting and nerve-wracking also. I've come to the realization, though, that God knows I'm submitting and preparing to submit, and if he wants me to get published, I will. And if not, I won't. He can use rotten query letters and oh-so-perfect ones may come to nothing.
  • Acting! It's fall and that means school, and school means Drama season! This semester we're doing senior-directed one-act plays. I'm the Fairy Godmother in Cinderella (more on that in a minute) and Charlotte Mulliner in The Unpleasantness at Bludleigh court. I've never been in more than one play at once. I'm also an extra in two plays, another first for me. It's a lot of fun, but I'm currently scrambling to find a 1920s English every-day kind of dress for Charlotte (which means I'm rifling through my closet whenever I have a moment and I'm searching Pinterest for Downton Abbey day dresses).
  • Memorizing! In addition to my two different parts in Drama, I also have a lot of vocabulary for Advanced Biology/Human Body/Anatomy class. 
  • Reading! I just finished Old Friends and New Fancies (review coming as soon as ever I can write it), and I'm currently reading Minding the Manor: The Memoir of a 1930s English Kitchen Maid. I saw it on the shelf when browsing the library and immediately knew it was something I'd be interested in. 
  • Studying! Happily, I finished all my maths last year (unless I unthinkingly decide to take calculus...). That leaves me with Advanced Biology, Government, History (currently Elizabethan age), online French, and various other little things. Soon we'll be reading Hamlet, also. Last Wednesday I took the PSAT. My mother just informed me I might not know my score for over a month!?!? Not that it really matters, but there's just a suspense in not knowing how any test went.
  • Playing! That sounds as if I'm really into board games right now... I could have said "Playing Piano" but then it wouldn't have fit with my one-word description, and "Musicing" just doesn't sound right. I've been steadily working on The Wedding at Troldhaugen by Edvard Grieg for over a month. It's ten pages long and I love it. I just started Mozart's K282 Sonata. It's cool that I can finally play actual songs that the composers wrote, and not an arranged version. I never thought I'd be able to.
  • Sewing! As mentioned above, I'm the Fairy Godmother in Cinderella. Funnily enough, the Author and I made a video rendition of Cinderella together, where I played the fairy Godmother. The characters are rather different, however...  Anyhow, I felt like being a junior in high school, acting in two plays and spending one long day out of town every week wasn't enough. Therefore I decided I should have an elaborate costume. Great idea, right? I had this very clear image in my head of an eighteenth-century fairy godmother, and even though I figured that would probably be hard, I decided to google the idea, and found this:
Incidentally, I did NOT know that the fairy godmother in the new Cinderella movie (which I just saw and very much endorse) was dressed in eighteenth-century clothes.

So, I searched my closet and found a very 80s prom dress, which I found at a garage sale a few years ago. At that time I had very few old-fashioned dresses, so something so like a ball gown couldn't be passed up. 
It also had a weird diagonal flap running across the front, and a giant rosette on the left shoulder. Although I did nothing more to it for a year and a half, the asymmetry and strangeness of those two features bothered me enough that I immediately cut them both off.

The sleeves were very weird; they were puffed, but also wrapped, and for the style they fell too low on the arm.
The neckline was also very high. The waistline and bodice were the closest thing I had to an 18th century dress, however, so I nervously removed the sleeves and cut down the neckline. I traced the a straight sleeve I had in my closet, cut it out, pinned it on, and altered it as necessary. My sewing machine is having problems, so I hand-sewed the neckline and both the sleeves, then attached lace.

Worn with a hoop skirt, loaned from a good friend.

It would have been perfect if it had been a paler color, white perhaps. But if it was white I probably wouldn't have bought it, as I don't as a rule wear the color.

I'm also working on tailoring a jacket given to me by a friend (a post on that as soon as I can finish it).

Oh, and I mentioned being out of town one day a week? That's because I get to help babysit this adorable little one:

Yup, that's my niece. Nine months old tomorrow. Eek! 

I make no promises, but my schedule gets rather less busy when October is over (until we start having dress rehearsals for the plays), so I intend to be around here rather more often. 
Au revoir,
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  1. Wow you seem really busy, makes me want to start being a little more productive.

    1. Sometimes being busy means being unproductive, too, though, because you just go from thing to thing without finishing anything.

  2. This is making me nostalgic for the days when I actually spent time sewing things. Then I grew a little bit, and suddenly I am actually able to find things that fit fairly often, so suddenly my sewing machine turned into the local dust hotel. *sigh*


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