Fun fact: Today and tomorrow are los dias de los muertos, the days of the dead, celebrated in Mexico. Today we remember los angelitos, the infants and children who died before reaching adulthood. Tomorrow we remember those who died as adults. But it’s a festive time, not a time for mourning.
OK, so who’s bright idea was it to let me have a hot glue gun??
It’s my own damn fault, really. The original plan for the ornaments I have stitched for my in-laws and my ‘rents involved getting some fabric, sewing it to the stitched part, and stuffing with polyfil. Needless to say I was concerned I was going to screw it up.
Then I was looking on About dot com’s cross-stitch forum, and someone suggested the mounting board that’s got foam to it. Another suggestion involved just framing my ornaments in little decorative hoops.
So last night I went to Michael’s looking for said decorative hoops, and only two of the ornaments I have made would have fit in the sizes they had. And the weight of the hoops I liked would have been too much for a Christmas tree, fake or real.
But Michael’s did have the mounting board with foam to it. I got that, and a hot glue gun (which was 40% off because I pretended that Kurt left my 40% off coupon at home, and the clerk took pity on me and used hers) — one of those dual-temperature ones so if I ever want to do lace I can.
I came home, tried to cut the damn board with my utility shears, and when that didn’t work Kurt got out the Dremel and put a cutting blade on it. I had POWER!!! Of course, I nearly cut his fingers off to while I was swinging the Dremel around, but at least I could cut the damn board with it. Then I rounded off the corners for some of them, and used the hot glue gun to fasten the fabric to the back.
This is where I acquired three burns on my right hand.
Aida cloth has holes in it. This is so that your stitches are square, and everything comes out pretty.
This means that hot glue seeps through the holes really easily.
Hot glue is HOT!!!
Just thought you should know.
So I hope my in-laws and my ‘rents appreciate my handiwork. I have burns to prove I’d do anything for their Christmas happiness. :o)
Speaking of holidays, everyone knows yesterday was Halloween. And everyone knows that Halloween is a time for the kiddies to get dressed up as fairies and devils and ballerinas and policepeople and small woodland creatures to go out and beg the neighborhood for candy.
The two groups of kids that knocked on my door got the candy part down, but not the costumes.
The first group that knocked on my door startled me, and completely forgetting that it was Halloween I answered the door. I found three young kids, no older than 10, saying, “Trick or treat” and expecting candy. The first problem is I hadn’t bought any candy (the one year we did, we got a total of two kids at our door). The second problem is, I wouldn’t have given them candy even if I had it!!!
None of the kids wore a costume.
I can somewhat understand some of the older kids (our area allows children up to the age of twelve to go trick-or-treating) not wanting to dress up because it’s “silly” or “goofy.”
But these kids were no more than ten, too young to be that cynical and jaded to think that all Halloween was good for is a few more cavities.
I was saddened by that. I can remember taking my brother out on Halloween and seeing all the cute costumes that folks of all ages were wearing. A lot of the parents in our neighborhood would dress up to hand out candy or to take their kids out trick-or-treating.
One year, I’m thinking my brother was around six or seven, making me a junior or senior in high school, and I was about a half mile from the house in our neighborhood when I ran into this kid I’ve known since third grade named Arthur.
Arthur and I go way back because for Christmas during my second grade year I got a Pound Puppy from our live-in babysitter, and I named him Arthur. Then when this kid Arthur moved into the district in third grade, everyone teased me about liking Arthur and naming my favorite stuffed animal after him.
But the stuffed animal came before the kid.
Anyhow, so I ran into Arthur a ways from the house (I’m not sure what he was doing since we were too old to go trick-or-treating), but he ran up to me all excited and began to tell me about this awesome house I had to go check out. He kept going on about how cool it was, and finally I asked him where exactly this house was.
Come to find out, it was my house.
See, that year Dad thought it’d be cool to dress up. He wore this caftan type thing he brought back from the Middle East YEARS ago when on one of his many Mediterrean cruises while he was in the Navy, and somewhere he got this mask of a really old, wrinkly man. Then he parked our 1931 Chevy truck parallel to the porch so you had to come up the driveway to get to the front door, and go around the truck. There my father sat, all dressed up, on the running boards to the truck, with his traffic light that he found at a car show blinking red, yellow, and green. I guess he’d yell at the kids to scare them, and make them come up to him to get the candy.
Dad had a great time that year.
And that’s what Halloween is all about. It’s not the candy. It’s the fantasy — dressing up as something you could never be, trying to stay warm in the crisp fall air, and bonding with your neighbors because they’re out and about that night with everyone else, instead of staying behind closed doors, shut away from the rest of the world.
It’s a shame that the only magic Halloween holds for kids now is how many pillowcases they can fill with candy.