A Useless Guide to Sewing Stockings

I grew up with one giant red stocking. My grandmother made it for me 🙂 It’s red felt, and has some reminants of glitter glue on it. Back when we were little and Santa was as real as real could be, it felt like a darn tooin’ miracle to walk into the living room Christmas morning and see those stocking filled with goodies.

Stocking LoveActually, it still does. My parents have been pretty awesome with that tradition. Though they’ve always said how the stocking my grandmother made were far too large. It’s been in my head for a while. The thing is, we could go out and buy new stockings – but Lulu made these all by herself. How can you replace homemade memories?

Well you cannot replace them. But I was thinking to myself, and decided that Zsolt and I need little stockings that we can take with us wherever we may be for the Holidays, be it Canada, Hungary or the moon. So, I decided to sew us Christmas stockings.

Stocking Z and C

Here’s my how-to-list for making Christmas stockings, from someone who really cannot sew.

1) pick out pretty material. I picked mine up from a shop called Fabrications in Hintonburg.

2) Pick out some soft stuff to add to the material. Only do this is if you want to make your life more complicated. Sewer Beware, this is a time-adder to the project. Though I do think it is worthwhile. I picked up some raw felt from the knitting shop Wabi Sabi in Hintonburg.

2.5) Watch a Youtube video on how to use a sewing machine . . . after you find yourself one. You can also handstich, but be prepared to take forever.

3) Figure it out!

Forget patterns, I Lady McGuivered it by just piling the materials on top of one another, did some pinning and cutting out a vague, large sock-like shape. This resulted in several errors and a lot of repining. Each sock is unique, because I’m terrible at planning. So one is really wide, and the other is really tall.

4) Sew it all together somehow. First I almost sewed it backwards. Then I ripped that out and started again. Except the edges were raw. So I cut a strip to cover that up. Eventually I resorted to hand-stitching certain sections that somehow estocking for Zscaped the chomp of the sewing machine.

5) The details matter. Seconds before I was about to cut into my felt for the Z and the C lettering, once again about to freestyle the letters – I thought, hey, why not print out a letter and just trace it?

 

I did, and it turned out beautifully. Because these stockings are meant to be life-long stockings, I didn’t just glue on the letters, but instead stitched them on.

And voila! Lovely Christmas stockings.

No matter how meandering and ridiculous the process, they got there in the end. I’m quite pleased.

And speaking of being pleased. I’m focusing on enjoying life a bit more this month. After the puddles of misery throughout November with waiting for & receiving scan results, I wanted to stop being sad all the damn time. That is my big goal for 2015 that I made during my parents workshop.

So, that means a few big changes that I’ll talk about later, but also one pretty important one I’ll talk about now.

I signed up for National Novel Writing Month, and finished the 50,000 in one month! It felt incredible and bizarre. At the start of the month it really seemed impossible, but by the end I was rolling. If I could give myself time to write 2000 words a day, do you realize how much I could write? TONS.

2014_winner_certificate

So, what I’d really like to give myself this year to help make life more liveable is the gift of TIME.

TIME to do what I love. TIME to clean my apartment. TIME to write 2000 words. TIME to get together with friends. TIME for my writing podcast. TIME to exercise. TIME to play.

That means shaving off time from other things. It means a bit of change and letting things go that I have wanted to do, and still want to do. But at this point, I think what really matters is just finding a way to not cry so often. Silly things like Christmas stockings are part of that.

So there you go, a useless guide for sewing stockings, and the gift of time. That’s me. That’s all I have to say about that. Happy holidays. 😉


Happy pictureSpeaking of fun, we had a really good time recording our latest podcast over at our writing show. Here is a link if you feel like having a listen as you wash dishes or something. 🙂

My Reading from Blog Out Loud

Not so long ago, the Ottawa International Writers Festival had welcomed Lynn’s Blog Out Loud event to their venue. I was lucky enough to be chosen to read at the event. Well, now you can see the reading – ifyou like. 🙂 There are some great blog posts read during this evening, so I encourage you to watch the whole video and do feel free to watch the other segments. If you want to skip ahead, I come onto the screen around 16:45 and read an old blog post “Riding the train in Hungary

The video has been acting a bit wonky, so I’ll add the click-to-link here as well: http://vimeo.com/111226494

You might like this, and, “SPIDER CRISIS!” Another post written late at night.

Oh my goodness, it’s getting late! You know what that means? Time for another rambling middle of the night blog post!

Except this week I’m keeping it very short, and possibly sweet if you enjoy this sort of thing. So, obviously Bumpyboobs is my little home on the internet. Many people reading this blog have their own little homes on the internet. We know how important these spaces are – these are the spaces in which we can say what needs to be said, find support, bring our own take on hot topics, begin conversations and much, much more.

Sacred spaces. 🙂

Oh blogging, I do love you.

Anyhow, this week I want to share another project that I think we can really relate to. Over at my new second home online . . .or would that be my third home after facingcancer.ca and fourth after SisterLeadership and fifth after twitter . . .

Hmm. ..

Anyhow, my new thing is OttawaWrites, which isn’t truly focused just on Ottawa. It’s a podcast for writers, simple as that. And this week I had the loveliest interview about creating social change through writing. And what better community to share that conversation with than BLOGGERS?! OR, those who read blogs and quietly think “I’d like to share my story too.”

The nice thing here, is this interview is about an Alternative Media Assembly workshop – writing for social change, and that is going to be live streamed on Saturday. You can catch the streaming here from anywhere in the world: http://psfaltmedia.tumblr.com/livestream

(In the meanwhile, here’s the podcast chat about writing for social change)

alexisshotwell

In this interview, the lovely Alexis Shotwell explains how she wants to make writing accessible for everyone. She also talks about writing for change – and so importantly, how an advocacy piece of writing isn’t simply a rant, but will leave the reader with takeaways to consider, be it questions, or suggestions, or guidance, etc.

So I think this might be perfect for many of you writers (and to-be-writer) who have a message to share. Therefore, I’ll link in the podcast, and if you like go giver ‘er a listen.

Enjoy!

(P.S. I am in the forest this week at a retreat. We’re reworking a client’s website/blog and focus, so went away from the world to really slow down and focus. Zsolt is alone at home fending for himself in terms of food. Thank goodness for takeout, otherwise I think the man would starve! MMUH to my man, if you are reading this post! )

Oh lord, now it’s 11 pm and the room may…. be spinning…just a little. So, this post is over. I’m tired.

Back to bed!

P.P.S. I’m staying in the basement of this cottage, and there is a really big spider on the wall right by the bed. OH MY GOD, it just flew through the air toward me! OPERATE ELIMINATE SPIDER IS ON!

P.P.P.S. It was a fly. I wasn’t wearing my glasses. In any case, it’s been taken care of. eep.

Good night! (Don’t forget to listen to that podcast if advocay in writing is your kinda thing. Even if you aren’t in Ottawa, they will be live streaming the talk this coming Saturday – so everyone can catch it.)