Christmas Time's A Comin'
And while I'm not going home, I'm still pretty excited about it all. I think I mentioned I've all of a sudden been motivated to do some solo sewing, because in the past I came up with an idea and then relied heavily on my mother for supervision and for part of the actual work. If not all of it. Whereas having a mom who sewed was not the most desirable thing for a 13-year-old ("I'm not going to buy that when I can make it"), 20+ years after that it becomes pretty awesome. I'm all for "I'm not going to buy that when I [or my mom] can make it" now! For Halloween, I had the itch to make Ella an owl costume and then it just kind of snowballed from there. I'm still sticking to easy projects like felt finger puppets and softies, plus I've been commissioned by Santa for the big project of making her a fabric baby carrier for Christmas. I've been learning from my (many, many) mistakes and there've still been some conference calls home, but it's been mostly solo work on my part.
I've been getting to know my sewing machine and am proud to be able to say that I'm no longer sewing on the slowest turtle speed and am not so afraid of sewing my own finger (although we all know I shouldn't get overly confident about that). I've also been getting to know the ladies at the local sewing shop and that always feels nice here. Oh, and I do have to mention that my mom did send me some video tutorials on how to make a bag with a boxy bottom as well as the proper use of a bodkin, so I still am somewhat dependent. But it's still progress from the days when it took me an hour just to thread the machine and fill a bobbin. And it tickles me to no end that Granny is sending me video tutorials. I love them!
In other news, we have a bathtub! Hoorah! I could not be more excited about this, because although I'm aware in this instance I have lost perspective about what constitutes a true tragedy in the world, I just could not develop enough flexibility to adapt to life with that crappy, tiny shower. I know, I know, first it was the gravel in the backyard and then it was the bathtub and you really should feel sorry for my husband -- but now I really will try my best to be content with the house as is. Except for the lack of paint on the walls, but to be fair, that also bugs the hubster so I don't feel too badly about that.
I also have vowed to be more vigilant about my hairy legs now that the bathroom is a more welcoming place. You know it's bad when your daughter says, "Oh, Momma, your legs are so fuzzy," albeit in an affectionate way like she says it to the cat. So yes, you really should feel sorry for my husband, because contrary to what seems to be a popular misconception back home, French women are not at all covered in body hair and from what I can tell it seems to be the other extreme (skirts are popular, even when it's freezing out).
The coolest thing is that the cheap IKEA baby bathtub has now been repurposed into a sled! We did get some snow and Stinkerbella was convinced she was going to go outside and make a giant snowman. Which we sort of did, except it's less like Frosty and more like one of the magi or perhaps Gandalf from Lord of the Rings. And it wasn't so much a matter of her making a snowman as it was me making the snowwizard while she stood around and asked questions. While I am absolutely thrilled that she is chatting up a storm in English I do sometimes wonder if she will end up with poor muscle tone so eventually we gave up on the snowfellow and I convinced her to follow any kind of animal track that we found in the snow. "Oooh, catprints -- let's see where it went!" Any other ideas are welcome but for now I'll just see if she can learn to walk and talk at the same time.